Check Your Source on Pinterest for Better Visual Marketing

What is the “Secret Source” on Pinterest?  It is the list of all the pins that have been pinned from or originate from your website.  In this post we will look at what it is, why it matters and why you need to check it regularly for better Visual Marketing.

Pinterest | Visual Marketing | Socially Sorted | Sunshine Coast | Australia
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If you follow this blog, you would possibly have come across my guest post over at www.amyporterfield.com titled “The 10 Commandments of Using Pinterest for Business”.  If not then check it out and pay particular attention to Commandment Numbers 2 and 4 as they talk about the “source” of pins. Let's call it the Secret Sauce that will help you to take your Pinterest efforts to another level with better Visual Marketing.

I won't dwell on the importance of the source of a pin here. Suffice to say if you read the article above you will come to understand my passion for protecting the source of your own pins (and out of courtesy, those of others) as much as possible.

But I will say this:

  • in the case of your pins, checking that you have clearly identified the source (with a few tricks like a watermark and a correct description) helps pinners to source them back to your website…and your products and services.
  • in the case of the pins of others, well, let's just say it is best to preserve copyright and pin with the copyright of the original owner/source in mind.

What I do want to focus on is one clear action you can take to regularly check your most popular pins, engage with others and get feedback about the “shareability” of your content.

Checking Your Secret “Source”
  1. Enter the following into your address bar:  www.pinterest.com/source/xyzwebsite.com – For example, if I was to check my website I would enter:  www.pinterest.com/source/sociallysorted.com.au.  Use whatever your website address is (without the www).
  2. A page will come up showing all the pins that have been pinned recently that had their origin or “source” on your website.  Obviously this is super cool, because it is a quick visual overview of all the ways that Pintrest users are interacting with your content.

Here is an example of my Pinterest “Source” Page today. This is just a snippet of the whole page as I can scroll down through many pins.

Pinterest | Visual Marketing | Socially Sorted
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By entering www.pinterest.com/source/sociallysorted.com.au I can immediately see recent pins that are sourced from my website. This is a great overview of the images that are currently popular.

As you can see, my latest post is featured with the photo of the little green toy soldiers, and a few months on, the 10 Commandments Infographic is still pinned regularly).  Other posts come up and it helps me to see what is popular from my website for “pinners”….then I can go and do more of that. Time to do another infographic methinks!

Here are some things you can consider when you are using the “Secret Source”:
  1. Store all “original” graphics on your website to show that they are yours!  Just posting them to Facebook doesn't really give you a home base for them. By posting them to a designated images/quotes/infographics page on your website, when they are pinned, the source link will lead back to your page. If someone clicks on the image they will visit your page.  This is great if the image is directing them to products and services.  It also gives you a chance to grab their attention and keep them on the page for longer.
  2. Add information to your image page that welcomes the person and entices them to investigate further. Maybe there is another page on your blog that you would like them to visit?  Put a link on there – give them a call to action.  The biggest issue with Pinterest traffic is that it can be quite flighty – people come to see the image and to see the source of it. What can you do to keep them to have a play on your website?
  3. Take time to add a great description on your Pin.  Add a short description first (keep it short, especially if posting to Twitter) and at the end, add your full url so that your website is included in the description.
  4. Visit your Source Page (using the URL above) regularly. Take the time to scroll through and “like” any repins from others. Also make some comments on repins such as “Thanks for Repinning”.  This will encourage engagement with other users.  Engage as you would on Facebook. Just be wary of not commenting too much in one session – Pinterest has been known to freeze commenting rights if you appear to be doing it too quickly or too much (perceived as spamming). Also remember that some of the pins on there will be yours so you will need to scroll through to find the ones that are from others.  I would also recommend you click over to their Pinterest account and follow people that are relevant.
  5. Edit your url by clicking on Edit Pin and check that it goes where you want it to go.  If you have it stored on your website on an image page, then that may be where you want to send people.  Or alternatively you can change the URL to send someone to your homepage, or a particular post or page.  Always, always check the source of the pin in this way.  Please note:  If you read the article above, you would know that I am a big advocate of checking the source of every pin you repin too.  Some unsavoury people like to change the original source of a pin and replace it with their own website. You can usually tell when something dodgy is going on. You should do one of two things: refuse to repin it, or report the pin.  
  6. Take the time to put watermarks on your most important images.  Look at the following image from my beautiful friend Kim at Like Chocolate for Women.  Kim has added a watermark to the poster they had designed for their business. This was for the benefit of marketing their business and specifically worked for Pinterest.  Adding a watermark helps to counteract any “dodgy” re-sourcing of pins that goes on from time to time.  At least if your pin source is altered, it will always have your website or company name on it.
Pinterest | Visual Marketing | Like Chocolate for Women | Socially Sorted | Sunshine Coast | Australia | Social Media Strategy |
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Note the addition of the website on this poster – this can be clear, opaque and loud and proud or faint and added just as a watermark. It keeps the “source” of your pinned image at all times, no matter what.

There you go! These are my main tips for getting some secret source on Pinterest (and on your website).

Let's play the follow game!  Are you on Pinterest?  Leave your Pinterest name/link below with a comment so that we can follow each other!  Socially Sorted is on Pinterest at www.pinterest.com/sociallysorted – see you there!  

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Donna Moritz

Visual Social Media Strategist at Socially Sorted
Donna is a Visual Content Strategist and founder of Socially Sorted, listed by Forbes as a "Top 5 Social Media Blog You Need to Know About in 2019". Donna helps brands leverage the power of visual storytelling and content strategy in their business. Her content has been featured in publications such as Forbes and Entrepreneur Online and she is a contributor to Social Media Examiner. Donna speaks about digital and visual content for the marketing and tourism industries internationally.

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13 Comments

    • Donna Moritz

      Ha ha I like that Robbie – though it’s pretty simple, not too much magic this time! Happy pinning!

      Reply
  1. Maureen | OrgasmicChef

    I checked mine and I didn’t get very many but I know there are more because I belong to a group who pin each others stuff. I checked another person’s source and I was listed once but I’ve pinned a lot of her recipes. Am I doing something wrong?

    Reply
    • Donna Moritz

      Hi Maureen – I guess it would depend if you are talking about “original content” stored on your website or part of a post or blog post, or repins. If it is original content that is pinned from your website it should show up there…You said checked on the source of someone elses page and you can only see yourself listed once. It is usually a long feed so you could scroll down and I don’t think all pins are there forever. If you are repinning other people’s content that is fine. It might not be perfect either, as with all social media platforms they may miss some. Thanks for sharing!

      Reply
      • Maureen Shaw

        Thanks, I think it gives a bunch and then gets tired 🙂

        Reply
  2. Krishna Everson

    Gawd! This is so awesome! I checked my sourced pins, and was honored to see you had shared one of my blogs (thankyou), and I had completely missed that! I can really see the power of this, and the potential for sharing and most importantly interacting. This has been a mammoth ‘aha’ for me. Thankyou for continuing to enlighten us with your amazing knowledge!

    Reply
    • Donna Moritz

      You are very welcome. It is definitely one that I like to go back to…and you are right, it is a great way to work out who to engage with on Pinterest! And yes, it is always nice to see that someone has shared your pins, as the notifications in Pinterest move so quickly that you can’t catch them all – at least the source page is one way to look at one part of the stats easily!

      Reply
  3. Cas McCullough

    Great post Donna. I always make sure I put my copyright info on each image I design now and I’d suggest all designers and photographers do the same. I am really happy for my images to be pinned, so long as the copyright info is not removed.

    Reply
    • Donna Moritz

      Absolutely – sharing is what we all want, but respectfully and with acknowledging the source!

      Reply
  4. Lisa Murray

    Thanks Donna, I always add my website to my images, but glad to know about the source tool – fantastic!

    Reply
    • Donna Moritz

      Lisa! Great to see you here and great that you add your website to images – I love your pinterest boards. So many awesome quotes and words of wisdom – a touch of bliss! :o)

      Reply
  5. Veronica (Roni)

    I don’t know Donna…while I get the concept & think it’s brilliant, the application all sounds like a foreign language to me!! I think I need prep school…I’m so not a natural at this stage :))

    Reply
    • Donna Moritz

      ha ha Roni, I think you are doing better than most people on social media! Pinterest is actually quite fun to play with and pretty simple and perfect for food blogs! Pictures and Food were meant to be together!

      Reply

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