Since 2010, Pinterest has been helping people find DIYs, recipes, products they love, how-tos, and thousands of other things. It’s both a creative outlet and marketer’s dream – both of those mean you can make money on Pinterest in a variety of ways.
But, here’s the thing about making money on Pinterest, they know how powerful the platform is, and they have actively been making changes to protect their user’s experience. There have been changes with affiliate marketing, running contests, etc.
That’s not bad. It means less spam, so the content is getting better for everyone.
And even with those changes, there are still 100% legitimate, non-spammy ways to make money on Pinterest.
There are opportunities for bloggers, virtual assistants, affiliate marketing directly through Pinterest, and more.
Here are 9 ways to make money on Pinterest in 2019:
1. Become a Pinterest virtual assistant
Pinterest virtual assistants can help bloggers, social media influencers, and online business owners optimize their Pinterest accounts. Your tasks might include:
- Creating pins
- Creating a pinning schedule
- Doing keyword research
If this sounds like something you’d be interested in, the Pinterest VA Course covers all of those things, plus how to find, land, and retain clients. The course is taught by two badass ladies, Gina Horkey and Kristin Larsen, who have already helped hundreds of bloggers and online entrepreneurs grow their businesses.
Click over to the Pinterest VA Course to learn more about the course and hear from some of their students.
They estimate that the average client is worth $500 a month – so a great side hustle to make money on Pinterest.
2. Make money on Pinterest as a blogger
Bloggers, like me (even I’m on Pinterest), use Pinterest to send traffic to our sites. It’s just one of several different strategies we use to grow our readership.
If you have a blog and want to make money on Pinterest, here are a few things you need to do:
- Create boards that are related to your blog. For personal finance bloggers, you might have boards for debt payoff advice, money-saving ideas for families, best budgeting apps, etc. Every niche and blog will have slightly different boards and pins.
- Create a freebie and pin it. Free offers are lead gen for bloggers. You give something, and in return, you get an email address. This is about trust, so make sure it’s a high-quality offer.
- Bring new readers to your site with your pins. Every time you publish a new article, create a pin for it.
- Pin other people’s pins. Interacting with your audience is a big part of blogging, and it’s just as important on Pinterest as it is on Facebook or Instagram.
None of those things are direct ways to make money on Pinterest, but they bring people to your blog. It increases your ability to make money with affiliate links, display advertising, and selling your own products.
It takes bloggers a lot of time and energy to do the things I brought up in that last point, even more time and energy to do it in a way that sees real results. This is why many bloggers hire Pinterest virtual assistants to manage their Pinterest accounts.
3. Do affiliate marketing
One of the many changes Pinterest has made over the years has to do with affiliate marketing. At first, they let you do it, then it was banned in 2015, and now it’s okay again.
Affiliate marketing is when you partner with companies to promote products and/or services. The company gives you a unique link (affiliate link) that you insert in your posts, and when a reader clicks on that link and purchases something, you get paid a little.
When you’re creating and pinning a pin, you’ll add your unique affiliate link in the URL. However, Pinterest does not allow URL shorteners, like Bitly or TinyURL.
Before you can start affiliate marketing with Pinterest, you’ll need to:
- Grow your following
- Pin on a regular basis
- Boost your monthly views
I’m going to give you tips for doing those things at the end of this article, but remember that monetizing your Pinterest account takes time, just like blogging.
4. Pinterest can drive traffic to your e-commerce site
If you have an e-commerce site, whether it’s through Shopify or Etsy, Pinterest can help you make money by increasing traffic to your site. Again, it’s not making money directly through Pinterest, you are leveraging Pinterest’s powerful search engine.
You would use basically the same strategy bloggers use, and Pinterest VAs can be a huge asset.
5. Gain a skill from Pinterest and monetize it
Another way to think about Pinterest is as a huge learning library. You can learn how to decorate cakes, build furniture, make origami stars, etc., etc. What if you got serious about learning a new skill, whether that’s creating something or providing a service?
Depending on what you’re selling and where, you can use Pinterest again, this time promoting your business.
6. Contribute content to brands
For big brands and large companies, coming up with compelling pins is serious business. For the small guys who lack those huge teams, they still need people to help create pins, and they’ll pay you to do it.
You’ll need to have strong creative skills, possibly a unique style in how you create your pins and will need to be building up your own Pinterest account so brands can find you and see your style.
With a successful account of your own (that’s your number of followers + number of monthly views), brands may pay you a flat fee to curate a board that would appear on both your profile and theirs.
8. Do a joint promotion with a brand
This is when a pinner works directly with a brand to create pins that promote their products. It can be product placement things, like “10 ways to repurpose Coca-Cola cans” or “5 epic Airbnb vacations.” I don’t know if either of those brands does joint promotions with pinners… this is just an example.
To make money on Pinterest through a joint promotion, you’ll need a successful account and be able to create really awesome pins, which would include:
- The concept of the pin
- Brand placement
- Design of pin
9. Teach people your Pinterest strategy
When you get really good at any of those ideas above, the next step is to make money on Pinterest by leveraging your knowledge.
If you managed to find several brands to work with you, other pinners will want to know how. Created a number of successful Pinterest campaigns for different clients, give people that knowledge.
You can monetize your Pinterest knowledge with courses, ebooks, coaching, etc. Having a blog will help you share your journey and reach other people who want to do the same.
If you don’t have a blog yet and are interested in starting one, Launch That Blog is a free service that:
- Helps with the installation and set-up process of a WordPress blog
- Teaches you how to use it
- Helps you make it look awesome
- Makes sure you have the essential tools ready to go
The only thing you need to pay for is hosting, which is only $2.95 per month through Bluehost. Seriously, that’s it. Click over to the Launch That Blog page to learn more about the service and bonus freebies.
Tips for making money on Pinterest
No matter how you decide to make money on Pinterest, these tips will help grow your monthly views and increase your following.
Create eye-catching pins
Pinterest is a visual tool, so you’ve got to make sure your pins stand out and look good. If you’re doing it as part of a business strategy, then using a free tool like Canva will help you make creative, professional looking pins.
Know how to describe your pins
Pinterest is a search engine like Google, so you want to describe your Pins using searchable keywords. Don’t just make it a bunch of hashtags.
Interact with other pinners
Pin other people’s pins, click their follow links, etc. Pinterest is a search engine, but it’s also a social media platform.
Make sure you have a business account
Before you can reach out to any brands for partnerships, affiliate links, etc., you will need a business account. Business accounts are free and give you access to analytics, among other things.
Use Tailwind to schedule pins
Tailwind is a marketing app that was created just for Pinterest and Instagram. It can help you with analytics, promoting Pins, but one of the things it does really well is helping you create a pinning schedule.
It costs $9.99 a month, and most bloggers I know who use it for their own Pinterest strategy swear by it.
Have a press or media kit
Media kits tell potential partners key facts and statistics about your blog, business, or Pinterest following. Having a media kit is one of the easiest ways to tell people what you can offer their business.
You can use Canva for your media kit too, and it should include:
- A short bio about you and your business
- A list of your services
- Number of impressions and/or following
- Information about your audience
Always be transparent about your partnerships
If you are using affiliate links or partnering with brands in any capacity, you have to let your audience know. The FTC has clear guidelines about this.
Follow Pinterest’s guidelines and best practices
To stay on the up and up as you make money on Pinterest, respect the platform by following their guidelines. You can find Pinterest’s Community Guidelines here, and it’s for both business account owners and personal users.
Learn about changes to the platform
Pinterest has changed a lot since they started in 2010. Those changes can affect the way you earn money through Pinterest. To learn about them, read emails they send and check out Social Media Today.
My final word on making money on Pinterest
I’m going to end with this… don’t just make money on Pinterest.
I really do think Pinterest offers a lot of different opportunities to earn money, but diversifying your income is the best way to protect yourself and your business when they make changes.
The platform already offers a huge reach, and it continues to grow – Pinterest now has over 256 million users, and approximately 50 million of them were added last year. I think it’s safe to say that Pinterest will continue to be around for a while and opportunities will just keep growing. But, looking at other income sources is just basic personal finance.
You can diversify with another side hustle, and for online business owners, make sure you’re increasing your traffic in other ways, like using Facebook ads to increase your blog traffic.