The Complete Guide To Pinterest For New Bloggers

The Complete Guide To Pinterest For New Bloggers

How I Grew My Pinterest to 500k Monthly Viewers In Under Six Months

Last week something amazing happened, I hit 500,000 monthly Pinterest viewers! I have been blogging for under 6 months so this was a really exciting milestone for me. Pinterest for new bloggers is a must and I have really reaped the benefits of this awesome social medial site.

When I hit that 500k number I went on Instagram to talk about the milestone and got SO MANY RESPONSES! I get a lot of ideas for blog content off Instagram responses and direct messages so I knew that I needed to dedicate a blog post to this topic. Usually, my Instagram audience is excited about my lipstick color or the food I am cooking so this subject matter was an exciting new blog topic.

Pinterest for Bloggers

Lets Rewind.

When I first started blogging I thought well I know Instagram, that’s easy, but Pinterest is going to be tricky and really its been the complete opposite experience. The big difference between Pinterest and Instagram is Pinterest rewards you for your efforts and well Instagram, not so much. The Instagram algorithm and tricks of the app change at a much more rapid speed than Pinterest does, making Instagram tricky to keep up with. To be completely honest, when I first started blogging I thought Instagram would be the only social platform I would use to market my blog.

I have based my career in the B2B marketing world so I have a pretty good understanding of SEO and using social media to generate leads, what I have never used in a professional setting, Pinterest. Prior to blogging, I used Pinterest maybe once every 3 months. I got married just over a year ago, I had a very unique wedding so even for wedding plannng, Pinterest was not a tool that I used. 

At this point in my blogging career, about 75% of my monthly blog views come from Pinterest. It is a necessary blogging tool and I am here to help you use it better. I’m going to be so transparent here, Instagram does not equal blog views for me. I have done some awesome networking and have amazing interactions on Instagram but that still doesn’t equal blog views for me. I currently have 4500 Instagram followers and if I get .05% to read a new blog post, its a good day. Maybe once I have access to the swipe up feature that number will change, but who knows.

Let’s Talk About What I Did To Get These Results On Pinterest.

Quick Note: At this point I have never paid for pin promotion, it’s not something I am against just something I have yet to do. If you have paid for pin promotion, I would love to hear how that worked out for you.

Consistency

Like anything in life, you must be consistent. I love to go on Pinterest at night time when I am watching TV with my husband and just pin away. On average, I am pinning about 300 new pins a week. 300 new pins might sound outrageous but once you start that pin number adds up fast! I try to mainly pin things similar to my blog posts from that week. If I have blog posts that week about home decor and fall fashion, I’m going target those two topics.

Use Hashtags

I really thought hashtags were just for Instagram but that’s not the case. The first big influx in monthly viewers I saw was when I began using hashtags. I read once that you must use between 4 – 8 hashtags for every pin, so that has been my rule of thumb.

Why are hashtags so important? 

When users search for something, the newest pins that include that hashtag in the description will show up in the results in chronological order. However, pins without hashtags will appear in order of most popular pins as opposed to chronologically. So hastag it up!

 Claim Your Website

A few months back I was cleaning my house and listening to Jenna Kutcher’s Goal Digger podcast with Yuka Ohishi (Episode 166). Yuka is an International Programs Manager at Pinterest and her insight was SO impactful to my Pinterest strategy. I learned on this episode of the podcast that, ” Pinterest rewards content creators who bring valuable pins from their own sites”. So claim your site, start pinning from it and Pinterest will reward you. After I claimed my website I saw a dramatic increase in viewers from Pinterest. If you are unsure how to claim your blog, Pinterest explains that here.

Join Relevant Group Boards

Until I was invited to contribute to my first group board I had no idea Group Boards were a thing. Being a contributor on a group board is a great way to expose your content to a brand new audience.

Learn from my mistakes – most people would be embarrassed to share this but who cares. I want to teach from my successes but also my failures. This past month I was removed from as a group board contributor and I immediately knew why. I was constantly adding pins to the group but I was no longer repinning other contributors, a big no-no. Obviously, this wasn’t a malicious move I honestly just forgot to do it. A good rule to follow as a group board contributor is for every pin that you add, repin one pin from the group.

Repin Your Content

Get in the habit of constantly repinning your own content. Self-promotion is mandatory in the blogging world, be your blogs number one fan! Here are a few guidelines that I follow when it comes to repinning.

  1. Multiple times a week I go to the Analytics Overview Page and I repin my most popular pins from that month. 
  2.  Every Month I go to my blog and repin my blog post from the previous month. Sometimes that content is topical and doesn’t make sense for the new month, but if it does make sense I make sure to repin it.
  3. If I see a pin is doing really well, I repin it to a new board to diversify the audience. For instance: If I see a pin with a sweater outfit is performing well on my fall fashion board, I will repin it to my fashion board.

Use A Scheduling App

I use Tailwind and have found great success with their tools.  My tailwind is set up so even if I don’t manually pin that day Tailwind will automatically pin anywhere from 12 – 17 pins per day. Additionally, I took advantage of the free month on Viral Tag but did not find their services as useful or rewarding as I did Tailwind.

While on the topic of tailwind, use their tribes! Tailwind gives you a free month to use their tribes, take advantage of it! Tailwind tribes are very similar to group boards, its a great way to get your content in front of new audiences.

Analytics!!!

Numbers tell a very important story, so pay close attention to your analytics. If my analytics say I had a high-performance Pinterest day, I write down whatever I did to experience success that day and recreate those actions at a later date. Additionally, if one of my pins do exceptionally well I will then create future blog content similar to that pin. Example: I normally blog about affordable fashion BUT my top 5 best-performing pins were all makeup or skincare related. If I did not pay close attention to my analytics I would not have seen the popularity of these topics.

My best performing pin to date is the drugstore makeup dupe pin below. If you want to see more makeup dupes you can find those here, here and here.

Pinterest Tips For Bloggers

But Heather, I don’t have time…

Okay now that you see my long list of rules and tools you are probably thinking to yourself oh my gosh, what a time commitment!!! The action items may look intense but great Pinterest results can be achieved in 5 – 10 hours a week. Some weeks I have more free time to dedicate to the success of my Pinterest but most weeks, I spend a quality 5 hours a week increasing my Pinterest traffic.

I am such a new blogger and am really learning every day but I think its great to hear the perspective from all types of people on their blogging journey. I hope this list gives your Pinterest and your blog or business the traffic that it deserves. If you ever have any questions regarding Pinterest please feel free to email me, hatonthemap@gmail.com

Lets be friends! Follow me on Pinterest and Instagram

Winter Fashion Trends That I Am So Excited About

Winter Fashion Trends That I Am So Excited About

A new season is upon us, time for new fashion trends, right? Well, at least I think so. I am not a fashion trend forecasting expert but I love to find the cutest trends for every season and translate those trends into outfits for the everyday girl.

A few of these winter trends are continuations from fall but I am beyond excited they are following us to winter because a world without animal print is a world I’m not ready for. If you read my fall trends post then you know I have been excited about pleats, leopard print and leather for a while and I am ecstatic that these trends are following us to winter.

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I recently posted on Instagram my own take on these winter trends. This winter white chenille sweater and velvet shoes will be on repeat all winter long. who knew velvet sneakers were a thing? I didn’t and I don’t know how I lived without them.

When searching online I could not find a list of winter trends that was targeted at someone like myself. All of the trend posts that I read were for high fashion, big budget ladies and well that just is not me. In an effort to stay true to my roots, this post is for all of those ladies out there whose Saturday nights might be spent at a local dive bar and their clothing budgets are much more conservative.

Because of where I live (Hello, beautiful Palm Springs) I do not get to wear traditional winter clothes on the daily but the good thing about my list is all of these trends have an option that is appropriate for us ladies who live in a more mild climate. If I am going to be completely honest, I am not a big fan of the cold. I love to visit the cold for a weekend and then rush back to my warm, sunny home.

Note: If you see something below that you are interested in always make sure to click on the link for accurate pricing. When I link on my blog sometimes the images do not display the sale price.

Now let’s get to my favorite fashion trends this winter

Velvet

 

Leather

 

Animal Print

 

Faux Fur

 

Silver

 

Tweed

 

Rust

 

Pleats

 

Winter White

 

Capes

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The Best Drugstore Dupes: Estee Lauder Double Wear Foundation

The Best Drugstore Dupes: Estee Lauder Double Wear Foundation

Earlier this year I finally listened to all the hype and purchased the Estee Lauder Double Wear Foundation and let me tell you my life was forever changed. I’m always on the lookout for new foundations to help give the appearance of flawless skin and Estee Lauder Double Wear Foundation does all that and more. Before I purchased the Estee Lauder Double Wear Foundation I normally wore the Makeup Forever Ultra HD Foundation or It Cosmetics CC Cream, I love all of these products but nothing compares to the Estee Lauder Foundation.

Estee Lauder Double Wear Foundation

As much as I just went on about my use of high-end makeup brands, let’s get one thing straight, I love drugstore make up. I exclusively use drugstore mascara and most of my lip products are from a drugstore brand.  But as it turns out I am a bit of a snob when it comes to foundation, if you haven’t read my favorite foundation blog post, it’s a good one.

Okay, story time – the day before Thanksgiving I was at Marshalls looking for a new pair of boots to wear over the long weekend. When I was checking out the girl in front of me in line was staring at me and said, “Can I ask you a really random question?” I of course smiled and said yes. She proceeded to ask me what foundation I was wearing, she told me she was a makeup artist and was very impressed with how perfectly the foundation fit the texture of my skin. Such a specific compliment, but I will take it. I was even more shocked because I wasn’t wearing my normal Estee Lauder Double Wear Foundation, I was wearing Revlon Color Stay and couldn’t believe I was getting complimented for it.  I ended up telling her about how I am trying all of the Estee Lauder dupes and at that moment I made a believer out of the Revlon Color Stay Foundation.

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In this picture, I am wearing an Estee Lauder Double Wear Foundation dupe and LOVE the flawless finish.

Since I wrote the post on the best foundations, I have been searching and testing all foundations that promised similar things as the Estee Lauder Double Wear Foundation and have finally narrowed my list down to the top four.

 

Okay, Let’s get to the dupes.

Revlon ColorStay

I love how this product has formulas for both normal/ dry skin and combo/ oily skin.

 

L’oreal Infallible Pro-Matte

 

 

Maybelline Super Stay Full Coverage

 

Rimmel Lasting Finish Breathable Foundation

The biggest difference between the Estee Lauder foundation and all of the dupes is the amount of product needed. When using the Estee Lauder foundation you can literally use 3 drops for complete coverage with the dupes you have to use a lot more product to get the same coverage but with the costs difference, it is OKAY!

I have tried all the foundations listed above and I definitely have a favorite and a least favorite.

Favorite: Revlon ColorStay. It is the one foundation that is closest in texture and staying power as the Estee Lauder Double Wear foundation. When I use this product I do put tons on but it looks good and it has some serious staying power.

Least Favorite: Rimmel Lasting Finish. This product starts out great but it quickly begins to fade and quickly shows every imperfection on your face.

If you have tried any of these Estee Lauder Double Wear Dupes? If you have, what was your experience?

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Skin Care Routine for Dry Skin: Products & Routine

Skin Care Routine for Dry Skin: Products & Routine

Dry skin, an issue most people face during the cooler months. Now that I am knocking on 30’s door I feel like my skin is becoming noticeably more sensitive and dry when the seasons change. This blog post has been a long time in the works, I have been working on it for weeks because I wanted to ensure all products were the tried and truly the best for dry, sensitive skin.

When I was 15 years old I started using anti-aging products, it probably was younger than that but that is the age that I remember receiving my first complete kit of anti-aging products. When I was that age I wanted to be Katie Couric when I grew up so I knew it was important to preserve my skin. In my opinion, you are never too young to start a proactive skincare routine. The most important aspect to maintaining youthful skin is SPF and moisturization, two things acceptable for all ages. It’s so important to keep my skin care routine really locked down because I like my makeup to look flawless and you can’t achieve flawless makeup without flawless skin.

On top of dry, sensitive skin, I also have very fair skin. I use SPF every single day, doesn’t matter the weather or my sun exposure, I always have it on! If your skin is darker than mine, SPF is super important to help eliminate preexisting scars and unwanted dark marks. I got in a really bad car accident when I was 17 that left me with over 40 stitches on my face, from that point on I did everything in my power to keep my face protected from the sun when outside. All the extra measures I took seem to have really helped, all of my scars have pretty much disappeared. 

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Skincare Routine for Dry Skin

For some reason when the weather changes my skin goes crazy. Any issue I have with my skin intensifies by 10 folds. My skincare routine is very important to me, VERY important.

Not only is my skin dry it’s also very sensitive, it gets irritated really easy and hates most skin products. Occasionally, I break out in these very painful rashes around my eyes, not exactly sure what it is but it also happens regularly to my dad. With all of my skin issues, there are a few brands that I swear by; Aveeno, Aveda, First Aid Beauty, and Dr. Dennis Gross Skincare (his stuff is a bit more expensive, but worth every darn penny). I know if I purchase a product from one of these brands that my sensitive skin will be happy with the results. 

My skincare routine:

Daily:

Every day I wash my face in the shower with Aveeno Absolutely Ageless, if my skin is super dry or irritated I use  Mad Hippie Cream Cleanser. Post-shower, I immediately put a face oil on; I switch off between Argan Oil and Rosehip Oil, both are super hydrating and affordable products. I really hate the smell of Argan oil so that is one downside. After that oil I put on a Vitamin C Serum, vitamin C has done wonders for my complexion, it has brightened my skin and has reduced the appearance of scars and any other issues. I like to let those products settle into my skin before I put on my daily moisturizer. For daily moisturizer I use the Aveeno Absolutely Ageless Daily Moisturizer, honestly, I should work for Aveeno because I love their products SO DANG MUCH. This moisturizer is great not only is it the perfect recipe for dry, sensitive skin, it also contains SPF 30, most daily moisturizers only have SPF 15. The combination of the face oil, serum, and daily moisturizer really seem to keep my skin hydrated all day long

Pro Tip: When putting on skin products always start with the most lightweight product and work your way up.

Every Night:

I never, ever, ever sleep with makeup on. I can be completely exhausted, walking into my house at 2AM and will promptly remove all makeup from my skin. I wash my face with the same Aveeno product I use in the morning, apply one of the hydrating face oils listed above and then top with Belif- The True Cream Aqua Bomb.

Weekly:

Multiple times a week when I am home catching up on housewives I will put on the Aveda Botanical Kinetics Intense Hydrating Masque and let my skin soak up that goodness. Its an all natural, moisturizing mask that seems to brighten my skin and add some deep moisture to my skin. 

At least once a week I like to do an at-home peel of some sort, I switch off between the two listed below. The Divine Skin Peel is much more affordable but the Dr. Dennis Gross Peel delivers much better results. Once I have done the peel I immediately put on a sheet mask, your skin absorbs the sheet mask best when your skin is a clean slate.

Divine Skin Peel: I bought this one on Amazon and I love it!! It’s a mild, at-home peel. It does require some planning around because when you use this product you are supposed to stay out of the sun and not wear make up the next day.

Dr. Dennis Gross Alpha Beta Extra Strength Daily Peel: These are expensive but I am not kidding when I say they are worth every last penny. The first time I was introduced to these a makeup artist in San Fransisco used these prior to doing my makeup and it felt like I had brand new skin. Two days later, I went back to work and one of my coworkers asked if I had a facial. I can’t sing the praise of this product enough!

 

 

Sheet Masks – I like to use masks with one or more of these ingredients:

Hyaluronic Acid 
Collagen
Vitamin E
Honey
Rose Petals

 

Monthly:

When I lived in Birmingham I was getting a twice a month facial and it was MARVELOUS!!! Now that we live in Palm Springs that is no longer in my budget. I’ve gone down to an every other month kind of schedule. I love a deeply hydrating facial, I think estheticians are magicians with those magical hands of theirs. 

Pro Tip: If you live near an Aveda school they offer CHEAP facials. The students have to do X amount of supervised hours so they offer amazing facials at a very discounted cost. The Birmingham school felt like a very upscale day spa and was always the highlight of my week when I went to visit.

My lifestyle is pretty healthy, full of healthy fats and tons of water. Drinking tons of water seems to really help my skin, I know 64 ounces is the recommended amount of daily water intake but I drink about 100 ounces of water a day. I will say if one weekend I drink a bit too much wine or bourbon my skin will immediately feel drier than normal.

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Skincare Products for Dry Skin

I have not yet invested in Botox but I am absolutely not against it. I have always said when I hit 30 I was going to do it, I am turning 30 later this year so we will see if I actually go through with it.

Is your skin dry and frustrating like mine? What’s your go-to skincare routine? Next, I am going to do a blog post on the best foundation for dry skin because I have tried every dry skin foundation and have read every article on the subject, I feel like a true professional at this point.

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Favorite Fall Outfits: Casual & Affordable Style

Favorite Fall Outfits: Casual & Affordable Style

This blog post has LONG been in the works, I have been browsing and shopping and returning clothes for weeks now in order to complete five perfect fall outfits. I am so excited to share my favorite fall looks that are real outfits all ladies can wear. I wanted the outfits to reflect my very casual, California style while also being at a price point that everyone could afford. These casual fall styles will be the perfect attire to drink beer in at an Oktoberfest or hit the pumpkin patch with your kids. Whatever activities your fall consist of these outfits will keep you stylish and comfortable all Fall long.

It’s also very important to mention that not one item listed below is over $75. I follow a lot of style bloggers and the outfits on their posts are full of pieces I would never splurge on, $250 for a pair of jeans, NOPE!

If you have been falling along on my Instagram, I have spent this past week vacationing on the central coast of California. The central coast of California is a must-visit destination for all ages and vacation interests. We stayed in the sleepy little town of Pacific Grove, which is just south of Monterey, CA. This coastal town had the perfect cool temperatures to bust out all of my favorite fall clothes that I was dying to wear.

Once you begin to scroll through this pictures you will notice a few trends.

1. I love a bodysuit! I think it looks so flattering and is a perfect layering item under a light jacket or sweater.

2. Leopard is my absolute favorite print of the fall season. Its funny, I am actually not much of a print girl, my closet is full of neutral items but leopard has really caught my attention this season and I hope it stays for a while.

3. I am obsessed with high rise jeans, specifically this pair! I have a super long torso so I feel like high waisted jeans help ensure that I always feel appropriate.

Five Favorite Fall Outfits

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Fall Outfit Ideas

But come on, can you get over how cute this leopard belt is? OBSESSED!

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Casual Fall Outfits

A wrap is such a nice fall accessory, so perfect to just throw on real quick.

Will an oversized sweater ever go out of style?! I sure hope not.

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If there is one thing I believe every twenty-something needs in her closet, it’s a leather jacket! This faux leather jacket is great for all seasons and is such a nice, quality item for a great price.

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This Free People bralette has been spotted all over my Instagram, if you don’t own it yet, run and buy it now! I love love love it!
What are some awesome fall fashion pieces that you have added to your wardrobe this year? Next piece I am buying is for sure a long cardigan, I need one in my life! Any good recommendations?
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