Tips to Create a Popular and Effective Pinterest Contest

For anyone running a business it is important to have some type of social media marketing plan using the various social platforms, and one of those platforms is, without a doubt, Pinterest.

Research has shown that the average user stays on the site for 90 minutes! This is huge for marketers and you want to develop a way that you can use this to your advantage.

Create a Contest as Part of Your Pinterest Strategy

If you’re trying to generate buzz, build a list of email subscribers, spread awareness about your business or your product, an effective way to accomplish this in Pinterest is to create contests. But for your contest to be successful and meet your goals, there are a few basic guidelines that you will need to follow.

Let’s take a look at some of these.

Pinterest Determine Your Goals or Objectives

If you don’t know where you’re going, you’re not going to get there. You absolutely must have a goal or objective in mind when creating a contest. Are you trying to get more people on your list? Are you trying to drive traffic to your website or blog? Or maybe you are about to launch a product and want to generate some buzz before the launch.

You want as many eyes on your contest as possible, don’t you? Write your goals down so that you stay focused on them.

Pinterest Decide on the Type of Contest

Different goals require a different type of contest; therefore, you must choose the type best suited to meet your needs based on your goals. You can’t use the same contest to get feedback, drive traffic, gain followers, etc. That just won’t work. You need a different contest to meet these different objectives.

Pinterest Obey the Pinterest Contest Rules

Failure to adhere to Pinterest’s rules just may get your account closed, and you don’t want that to happen. Don’t be careless or lazy… you must read the rules about contests and follow them to the letter. If in doubt, it’s always better to err on the side of caution. In fact, you should email their support desk if you have any questions.

Pinterest Make it Easy to Join Your Contest

You should eliminate barriers to entry for your contest. Generally speaking, people are cautious about giving up personal information and do not like filling out too many form fields. You just need a name and email address to send a digital prize.

The more information you ask for, the more people are going to be put off. It’s better to get them into the contest first then ask for additional information from the contestants later on if it’s necessary. Don’t ask for more than what you need.

Pinterest Make Your Prize Attractive and Targeted

Your prize should be targeted specifically towards your intended audience. If you offer overly generalized prizes such as cash or electronics, you are going to attract people from all over the world. Most of them will never buy what you’re selling because they’re only interested in the prize you’re offering.

Make your prize something that is related to your niche. Maybe offer your products or services for free. The prize winners may be so impressed that they become customers for life, and that’s a good thing.

Pinterest Don’t Be Shy

This is not the time to be meek and humble. Go ahead and ask for shares and repins. Tell everyone to share your contest. The more buzz your contest generates, the better. There is only so much that you can do on your own.

Pinterest Encourage Participation

Encourage your contestants to create boards for your contest so that people will be able to join your contest from their boards. If you can do this, your contest can easily go viral. You could offer an additional incentive for those who do create boards for your Pinterest contest.

Pinterest Cross-Promote Your Contest

You should get the word out about your contest on your blog, through your email, on Facebook and other social media. The more people know about it, the more will join. It’s a numbers game.

Pinterest Make Your Contest Attractive

You want your contest to be eye-catching and attractive. Design beautiful graphics yourself or hire someone to do it. People tend to judge a contest by its appearance so you want your contest to look its best.

Pinterest Make Your Contest Mobile Friendly

Millions of people surf the Internet from their smart phones. Make sure they can join your contest from their mobile device. If you neglect this, you’ll be leaving a huge chunk of your potential customers out of the game.


Contests are a great way to engage with your audience. Contests are a great tool to drive traffic and there is always the possibility that your contest can go viral. You just need to plan it out well, deliver on your promises and stay well within the rules of conducting a contest. Take a Pinterest contest for a spin. You might never look back.


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