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As many of you know, Pinterest stated earlier this summer that the Pinterest algorithm was changing again and they were de-emphasizing group boards. For many bloggers, group boards were a significant part of their Pinterest strategy, so this was a huge deal!

As a new Pinterest manager (3 months in), I have a strategy for using group boards that I wanted to share. Check it out to see if it can work for you!

My Thoughts on Using Group Boards

From what I understand, a popular strategy that many bloggers used was to join huge numbers of group boards for places to share their pins. They would then rotate their pins through these boards and get significant traffic from them. While most group boards had a policy like pin one of someone else's pins to your own boards for each pin you shared of your own, many bloggers relied on having their pins seen by other group members' followers.

When Pinterest said they were changing the algorithm so that a pinner's pins would only be shown to that person's followers, it caused significant concern for many people. Some wondered what they should do, some pinners abandoned group boards altogether, and some owners of group boards just stopped their group boards.

While no one has said that you should stop using group boards completely, there have been clear signs that there needs to be a shift in strategy for group boards. As with everything, it is so important to maintain a balanced approach in your Pinterest strategy. One should not rely completely on group boards to grow a website. Plus, pinning to so many group boards takes too much time. Group boards should work for you, not the other way around!

So, when you consider all of these things, is using group boards still worth it?

I say yes... with conditions (there are always conditions, right??)

My Strategy for Using Group Boards

The days of pinning to every group board you can and expecting your page views to grow by the millions are gone. I doubt it ever worked quite like that #becausepinterest but I'm making a point here!

The first part of my strategy for using group boards is to carefully select group boards that fit the niche I'm working in. One of my clients is a registered dietitian with very specific dietary restrictions in her recipes. I only apply to group boards that fit very closely with who she is and where her recipes fit.

I also consider how many bloggers currently pin to the board. I don't want her amazing content to be lost in a crowd. While it's important to post to an active board, you don't want a board that gets thousands of pins a day. Those boards move too quickly, and pins don't have the opportunity to be seen by board members or followers.

Another part of my strategy for using group boards is to be a considerate group member. Following the rules of the group board is my first priority. I pin equal numbers (or a greater number) of other people's pins to my own boards as I pin of the pins I'm pinning to the group board. I also avoid pinning big numbers of my own pins all at once. It's important to remember that it's not just my own board, so I try to help maintain the mix of different people's content.

A third part of my Pinterest strategy for using group boards is to spread out when I pin to group boards. I use  Tailwind to schedule my own pins and client pins.  Within Tailwind, I use board lists and intervals so multiples of the same pin do not appear in a row in my recent pins. I don't know if it really makes a difference, but I think it looks spammy when all the recent pins are the same in a pinner's profile. I'm not likely to follow that person, and I definitely don't want to be that person!

I also spread out how often I repeat pins when using group boards or my own boards. Maintaining a good mix of content on boards is important, so I don't repeat pins more often than once a month. I think contributing a variety of quality content is essential to being a considerate member of a group board, and it's good Pinterest strategy.

The final part of my strategy for using group boards is to pin quality content from other group board members. Since Pinterest is a combination of creating quality content and curating quality content (say that five times fast!), I have found group boards to be a great place to find content for my boards. This helps develop a reputation as a niche expert, and it can help improve visibility with other board pinners. They are then more likely to view and/or pin my content. This can lead to brand visibility with their followers. Plus, their interactions with my content can boost pins in the Pinterest algorithm, which can lead to increased visibility across all of Pinterest. It's a win-win situation!

Summary

To sum things up, here's a recap of my strategy for using group boards on Pinterest:

  • Carefully consider the group boards you use - Stay within your niche and stay away from group boards with thousands of members. You want your pins to be visible, not lost in the crowd!
  • Be a considerate group board member - Follow the rules and give back as much or more than you get. #rulestoliveby
  • Spread out when you pin to group boards - Don't be spammy. If you need help with spacing pins out, using board lists in Tailwind (affiliate link) is super helpful!
  • Pin quality content from other group board pinners - Group boards, especially niche boards, are a great place to find content that matches to your audience. And with Tailwind, it makes it so easy to batch-schedule pins and keep your Pinterest account growing. 

If this Pinterest strategy seems overwhelming, I do offer Pinterest management services that fit with any budget. You can check out my services or schedule a FREE consultation. You can also feel free to reach out to me with questions or comments. I love working with people to help them develop what works for them on Pinterest!

Now it's your turn! Do you use group boards on Pinterest? How do they work for you? Did I leave out any important strategies for using group boards? Leave a comment below or on my Facebook page!

Until next time,

owner name with logo, website, and tagline for May Virtual Assists

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