Pinterest group boards are one of my blogging “secret weapons”. When used properly, group boards can drive massive traffic back to your blog, your opt-in freebies, and your products or services.
I get a lot of questions about Pinterest group boards, both from other bloggers and my coaching clients. Questions like…
“Once I’ve found the right group board, how do I actually go about joining it?”
“What kinds of things should I be pinning to group boards, and how often?”
“When is a good time for me to create my own group board? How many followers should I have?”
Because group boards are one of the major ways I’ve grown my Pinterest account, my email list, and my blog traffic, today I want to share with you everything you need to know about creating, joining, and utilizing group boards.
Once you know how to find, join, and use group boards, you’ll be able to exponentially increase your traffic coming from Pinterest. To give you some “real life” numbers, over the past few months Pinterest has increased from bringing in only 16% of my blog traffic, to now bringing in over 70%.
You can achieve those numbers too! And Pinterest group boards will be your best friend when it comes to doing that.
But first, what is a group board?
A group board is one with multiple contributors – AKA, more than one person can pin to it. You’ll know it’s a group board because it will have a little grey icon of two people in the bottom right corner, like so:
Why Should I Join Group Boards?
The benefits of group boards are two-fold:
#1. Group boards typically have a high number of followers – anywhere from 1K to 50K and beyond.
This means when you pin your original content (your blog post pins) to group boards, they’ll be seen by a lot more people. And this, of course, will increase the number of re-pins and click-throughs to your website.
#2. Group boards are amazing “Source Boards”.
Because the group boards you join are directly related to your niche, each board serves as a super-curated feed for you to pin from. All you have to do is click over to the group board and you’ll have hundreds (if not thousands) of pins that are perfect for re-pinning to your own boards.
Plus, because group boards are monitored by the board’s “owner”, irrelevant and/or unattractive pins are removed. Basically, each group board is a gold mine of relevant pins for you to share to your own accounts and boards.
Which group boards should I join?
The perfect Pinterest group board will meet the following 4 criteria:
#1. It’s directly related to your blog’s niche.
e.g., If you’re a travel blogger, don’t join a fashion group board. And vice versa.
#2. It has a decent number of followers.
Ideally you want to join group boards that have more followers than your account does. Again, this will help you put your pins and content in front of more sets of eyes.
#3. It has a decent number of contributors.
If only 3 or 4 people are pinning to a group board, the feed can get clogged up pretty quickly. You won’t be able to pin your own content to it as often without looking like you’re “stealing the show”.
To see how many pinners are contributing to a group board, click over to the board and look in the top right corner. There you’ll find the group board creator in the circle on the far left, along with 2 other accounts that were the most recent to join the board. Next to that you’ll see the number of other pinners contributing besides those 3.
#4. It has a high re-pin rate.
This last one is super important. What do I mean by re-pin rate? I mean the average number of re-pins each pin on that board gets. If the average re-pin rate is only 1-2 re-pins, it’s probably not worth your time to join that group board.
How do you determine the re-pin rate for a group board? That’s coming up next!
How do I find relevant group boards to join?
This is where my favorite site ever, pingroupie.com, swoops in to save the day. Although there are definitely other ways to find group boards on Pinterest, this method is my favorite by far.
Pingroupie is basically a search engine for Pinterest group boards. You enter in a word or phrase that’s related to your niche, hit the “Filter” button, and you’re presented with a list of relevant group boards that you can join!
For example, look what comes up when I enter the keyword “blogging” into the description field on Pingroupie:
Not only does Pingroupie provide a clickable list of group boards related to your niche, it ALSO gives you some important statistics for each group board, including:
• Number of collaborators
• Number of followers
• Re-pin rate
So the hard work is done for you! Pingroupie makes it a cinch to find group boards that meet the criteria we talked about above, which is why I love it so much.
How do I Join Group Boards?
This is where things get slightly more tricky, but don’t worry – I’ll walk you through it!
To join a Pinterest group board, you must be invited by either the group board’s creator, or by another pinner who’s a collaborator on that board. Depending on how the creator has set up the board, sometimes other members will be able to send invites, and sometimes they won’t.
So how do you secure an invite?
Start by reading the board’s description, right up at the top underneath the board’s title. This description will often include instructions for obtaining an invite. These typically include:
#1. Following the group board, OR the entire account of the board’s owner.
The owner will always be the pinner on the left-hand side of the list of contributors, which you’ll find in the top right corner of the board. Click on his/her image to visit their profile and follow their account, if necessary.
#2. Send a message or an email to the owner, OR leave a comment on a recent pin asking for an invite.
Messages on Pinterest can only be sent between accounts that follow each other, so this method is becoming less common. However, sending an email request is still very popular. If that’s the case, the group board owner will leave his or her email address in the board’s description.
If they ask you to leave a comment on a recent pin asking for an invite, here’s a quick and easy way to do that:
• Click to the board owner’s profile
• Click on the section called “Pins” just under their bio
• Click the most recent pin in the feed (top left)
• Scroll down and click “Comments” to expand that area
• Leave your comment in this section
• If possible, use the @ symbol to tag the board owner in your comment
Not sure what to write in your comment or email when asking for an invite? Here are a few things you need to include:
• A quick greeting and introduction
• Your request and the name of the group board(s)
• The email address you log in to Pinterest with
Invitations to group boards can be sent in one of two ways: either using your Pinterest account name/handle, OR using your email address. This is why you should always include that email address when you ask for an invite.
Here’s an example of an email I might send to the owner of a group board I want to join:
My name’s Krista, and I run a website called Blog Beautifully, where I share blogging, email list, and Pinterest tips for bloggers.
I would love to join your “_______________” group board on Pinterest!
Here’s the link to my Pinterest account.
And my email address is firstname.lastname@example.org, if you prefer to send invites that way.
Thanks so much!
Simple, to the point, but effective!
How to Accept an Invite
Your invite will arrive one of two ways:
#1. In your email’s inbox.
#2. In the Messages section of your Notifications on Pinterest.
To get to your Messages section, click on the speech bubble in the top right corner of Pinterest, then click into the Messages tab.
When you see the invitation, all that’s left to do is click “Accept”! Sometimes it takes a few days for group board owners to get back to you – especially if it’s a very large and active board – so give it time if you don’t hear back immediately.
What if there aren’t instructions for joining?
In that case, it’s likely that the group board owner isn’t looking to add new contributors at this time. If you really want to join, there’s no harm in sending an email or leaving a comment on a recent pin asking for an invite. But just know that you might not hear back.
Most of the time if I come across a group board that doesn’t have instructions for joining, I just move on to the next one. There are plenty of fish in the sea!
It seems like I have a LOT to say on this topic, so rather than keeping you here all day, I’m going to turn this into a two-part series. In the second post, we’ll cover:
• How many group boards you should join
• What you should pin to them and how often
• How and when you should create your own group board
• How to set rules and manage your group board
Click here to read the second post in this series!