Pinterest’s newest creator-first feature, the Story Pin, was the center of attention at their first-ever Creators Festival. In a session outlining “best practices for breaking through the feed,” Pinterest Fashion Creator Lead Jeana Kim-Timmons details four key strategies to consider when building a Story Pin to make content shine.
1. Build a narrative from beginning to end
Unlike other platforms, a Story Pin is, very literally, a story. As Kim-Timmons explains it, “Story features on other platforms are designed to show you what people are doing, whereas Story Pins on Pinterest show you how people are trying new projects and ideas.” Story Pins are a creative medium for building tutorials, recipes, and more. Organize them with a clear beginning, middle, and end to create a logical flow and encourage viewers to watch until the end.
- Begin with a preview of the finished product. Grab and hook the viewer’s attention with a teaser of what they can get by following the tutorial—this can be anything from a fully-plated dinner recipe to a styled outfit complete with all the accessories.
- Fill the majority of the pages with a step-by-step tutorial. This should be the longest part of the Story, and include all relevant details such as ingredients or supplies, visual demonstration, and any extra notes or tips.
- Showcase the satisfying final payoff. Show off the finished product in its full glory. This is the time to slice the cake, tour the renovated room, show the outfit in movement, display the artwork, and more.
- Finish with a CTA. Utilize the conclusion to tie this Story into a larger narrative. This Story Pin fits within a Board as a whole, and directing a viewer to follow it can show them the entire picture.
2. Make content with clear context
Story Pins appear in searches, so content with a specific context often gets repeated traction over time. Pins can trend any time, regardless of the date which it was posted. Keeping content timeless or evergreen in nature is key to ensuring its indefinitely long lifespan. Certain storylines will always be relevant, and they usually fall under either everyday situations (routines, hobbies, and wellness) or occasions (parties, celebrations, and holidays).
In fact, occasion-based content is a great way to expand your typical following and reach. In a later segment, Erica Chan Hoffman of HonestlyWTF notes, “Bridal does really well for me on Pinterest, which is a type of content that I don’t necessarily produce very much on my blog. But it’s given me opportunities to work with bridal companies, and to produce content for them.” Exploring the many different contexts for content on Pinterest is an opportunity to reach new audiences, and make new partnerships.
3. Create a visually appealing design
One of the most important elements of any Pinterest content is the aesthetic. A Story Pin is a part of a larger narrative, and since Story Pins do not disappear, it is worth taking the extra effort to plan. The overall theme should be cohesive, but the aesthetic can be anything from rustic farmhouse to minimalist monochrome. While imagery is paramount, text should not be overlooked. It should take up no more than 30 percent of an image, but it appears in a search—so plan accordingly when strategizing for SEO.
An example of an exceptionally well-curated aesthetic on Pinterest would be that of Raiza Costa, the talented pastry chef who hosted the Baking Break segment of the festival. Her content is filled with bright primary colors, pop prints, and modern retro design, making her gorgeous desserts shine.
4. Use internal CTAs to drive engagement
Pinterest encourages creators to utilize internal CTAs, which keep all actions and interactions within the platform. While Instagram Stories usually conclude with a CTA to “swipe up,” which links to an external landing page, Story Pins decisively exclude this feature. Kim-Timmons explains that the “immersive, action-oriented format” is “designed to help you tell your full story on Pinterest.” As a result, any and all CTAs are limited to: Follow, Comment, Save, React, or Try. Try is a Pinterest-specific feature that allows followers to share their experience trying a project, including photos and tips for others, which can be valuable for creating long-lasting content that continues to engage a community and consistently trend over time.
Story Pins are still in beta, but Pinterest encourages creators to reach out and request early access. There is a waiting period, so submit a request as soon as possible to save a spot in line. In the meantime, check out a few sources that Pinterest recommends for creators, including the Creator Community and the Pinterest Business Site, or watch the full recording of the Creators Festival.
While Stories are nothing new for most platforms, Story Pins are a complete reimagination of the feature. In the true spirit and style of Pinterest, they have transformed standard Stories into something entirely new and unique. Now, with more ways than ever to make content in the platform, there has never been a better time to create, inspire, and influence with Pinterest.
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