Spend a few minutes on Pinterest and you are bound to come across one of them – the vertical or long collage-style pin, specifically if you are browsing for recipes, DIY projects, instructions, and tutorials. If you have no idea what I am talking about, here’s an example (Source: DIY Ready).
Notice the long style with each step outlined within the pin itself?
Or here’s another (Source: I Heart Naptime).
Recipe pins tend to use this style more often than other types of pins because of the ease with which they can display each step along with the finished product in one long image.
I am sure you now understand what I am talking about, right?
Now back in the days when I was using Pinterest purely for pleasure (and not business) honestly, I did not give these pins a second thought!
They looked nice, stood out from the crowd – you know because they fit the Pinterest display style perfectly and, I guess I was more inclined to click on them because they kinda displayed all the info I was looking for within the image itself. Or at least they showed the initial and final products in one long pin to give me an idea of what I can expect to see once I clicked through.
Notice the reasons I just listed above which would make me click on one of those long pins as a casual browser. Even without putting much thought into the whole process, I was still inclined to click on them, right?
Therefore today’s DIY lesson is based on how you can create these vertical or long collage-style images for Pinterest using the simple online photo editor called PicMonkey.
Yes, you can also create them using Photoshop (something which I am currently in the process of learning because I have signed up for Adobe’s Creative Cloud) but I will share my experience using PicMonkey because it is so simple to learn and use (yes, you can actually create a pin in about five minutes) and not everybody knows how to use Photoshop (keeping in mind all you non-designers out there).
And the example I am going to use is to display some content from my ebook – 6 Surefire Ways to Make your Website More Pinterest Friendly. I wanted to create a long style pin to give people a sneak peek of what they can expect to find in my ebook. (If you’d like to grab a copy right away, sign up here).
Now, you can create any type of collage you like using this method. As I mentioned earlier, recipes are an excellent choice!
You can also use the style to display;
- Step by step tutorials or before and after pics (if you are into DIY projects and crafts).
- A photo collage (if you run a photography business to give your target audience a sneak peek of your photography style). Here is an example from Praise Wedding online magazine.
- Your design/branding portfolios (if you are a creative entrepreneur). Here is an example from Elle and Company.
- Behind the scenes of photoshoots or pretty much anything behind the scenes – packaging, learning a new skill or brainstorming your ideas with a client that you want to showcase to your followers. Here is an example from Click it Up a Notch.
And again this is not an exhaustive list. These are just some ideas I came up with right off the bat to give you an idea about how you can put this tutorial to good use.
So, let’s get started, shall we?
Head over to PicMonkey.com and click on “Collage”.
If you hover your cursor over “Collage”, PicMonkey will display the locations from where you can pick your photos. Choose your location and upload your photos.
If you click on “Collage” right away (without the cursor hover) PicMonkey will assume that you want to upload the photos from your computer and open up a window.
For this example, we are going to work with three images. As you can see in the screenshot below, this is what your screen will look like once you have selected and uploaded your photos. You can continue to add more photos if you like by clicking on “Open Photos”. You can also remove a photo if you don’t want to use it in your collage anymore by clicking on “x” on the top right corner of the image.
Resize your canvas to make it Pinterest friendly.
You will notice that PicMonkey opens up a 2000 x 2000 pixels square canvas by default.
However, for making sure our pin displays perfectly within Pinterest we need to change the width of the canvas to 735 pixels. (735 x 1102 pixels are the ideal dimensions for displaying a pin within the Pinterest feed but we will use a longer version here – the height will be greater than 1102 pixels because we will not be able to fit in our three images if the height is 1102 pixels or less). For now, I will leave the height at 2000 pixels.
In order to change the width of the canvas, click on the lock icon towards the right (to unlock the fixed proportions) and enter 735 in the first box. Your canvas will now get resized to 735 x 2000 pixels. Don’t lock these proportions just yet because you might have to make some adjustments to the height (2000 pixels) later.
Select your collage layout.
As you can see, PicMonkey displays a layout by default. But you can change this if you like.
In order to select a new, pre-designed layout click on “Layouts” on the left and choose your preferred layout. Once you apply a new layout, you will notice though, that your canvas gets resized to the 2000 x 2000 size. So you will need to resize it back to 735 x 2000 pixels as mentioned in the step above.
Tip: In order to avoid this, go ahead and select your layout first (after you upload your photos for the very first time) and then resize your canvas.
However, for the purpose of this tutorial I am going to follow a different approach. Since I want my images to display one after another vertically, I will begin with one long, blank canvas.
So, after resizing my canvas to the Pinterest friendly size I will click on the “x” button for the two smaller cells on the right leaving me with one long cell to work with.
Add your images.
In order to add your images to the collage, all you need to do is drag and drop them into your working cell. Therefore, I will go ahead and add my first image to the cell.
For the second image, after you drag it over to the cell, you will notice that an insert bar will show up beneath the first image. Place your cursor over the bar to add your second image to the cell and so on.
Continue dragging and dropping your images one after another to place them within your collage.
As you can see in the screenshot below, I have added all three of my images to the working cell. But I still need to resize my collage (adjust the height) a wee bit so that all the content within my images display properly.
In order to do that, I place my cursor at the end of the collage and drag it down to the size I want. You can also drag it up from the top of the collage or even resize individual images by clicking on the “Edit” button.
Add text, overlays etc. to your collage as you like.
Now that your images are in place, go ahead and add your text, overlays, etc. to your collage according to your needs (towards the top, bottom, center however you like).
To do this, click on “Edit” and PicMonkey will open up your collage within its editor. Add your final touches (colors, text) to your collage here and save it. And that’s it! You’re actually all done!
In my case, I don’t want to add any text because my first image already contains the required the text – 6 Surefire Ways to Make your Website More Pinterest Friendly. I will only reduce my background spacing to zero because that is how I want my final image to look (this needs to be done before you hit the “Edit” button for further edits).
Related: Six ways to make your website more Pinterest friendly (plus an infographic to help you pin better and a free ebook)
Bonus tips to help your long pins get noticed even further
- Don’t make your pin too long! If your pin is too long, it will get cut off within a user’s Pinterest feed. He/she will have to click on “Expand Pin” to see its complete content. Having said that, according to my research, a height of 1800 – 2300 pixels is a good size.
- If you are adding text to your collage, add it separately as a header, footer or at the center. This will make your text stand out and be more visible rather than adding it directly onto your image. See the example below (Source: Pinch of Yum).
- Its no secret anymore that a lot of your readers might be browsing through their Pinterest feeds on their mobile devices. Therefore, once again, make sure that the fonts and colors you choose look good on a mobile device. For example, choosing a text size/color which people can read even when they are using their mobile devices.
- Try and keep your pins (long or otherwise) as homogenous as possible so that your readers can easily identify them within their feeds.
- And lastly, don’t forget to brand your pins using your logo/website name!
Super bonus tip
And now, here’s a super bonus tip! (Drumroll please…).
Has this ever happened to you? You click on a long, pretty pin on Pinterest but when you actually land on the blog post, the image that you clicked on is nowhere to be found within the post body!
For example, take a look at this post from Wonderlass. The post talks about a blog + life planner. Now, of course, there are many pretty pictures to pin within this post but if you click on the “Pin it” button on your browser, this is the page that pops up. Notice that these two pink images are missing from the actual blog post.
The trick? Adding a hidden image to your blog post to be pinned on Pinterest!
Now, why would someone want to do that, right? Two reasons.
- Turns out that sometimes, your long image, even though it might look great when pinned on Pinterest looks rather silly within your post body, because it is, well, too long. For example, when you want to share a step by step DIY tutorial or a recipe.
- You can create multiple, different pins to promote the same blog post. Just like in the example above where you see two extra pink pins promoting the same product/blog post.
So, how can you add this “hidden image” to your blog post? Follow the steps below.
Add the long, pinnable version of the image to your post. You can add it anywhere you like. But it is better to add it right after your post’s featured image to make things easy for you.
Head over to your text editor.
Add this piece of code to the uploaded image. The “IMAGE CODE” part is already present. All you need to do is add the “div” part.
<div style=“display:none;”>IMAGE CODE</div>
And that’s it! Your image will now be hidden in the original post but when someone tries to pin your post’s images using the browser button it will show up.
Liked this post? Don’t forget to share it on social! If you wanna pin this post, use the Pinterest friendly image below for the best results.
Have you ever created a long collage-style pin for your blog post? What tools did you use? If not, did you find this tutorial useful? Let me know in the comments below.