Are you trying to find an honest tailwind review but every review on the internet seems like a promotion for Tailwind to get you to buy through an affiliate link? It’s annoying, isn’t it?
Because even though the review feels legit, you’re still not 100% sure it’s authentic since there is something to be gained from the post.
Well, rest assured. I am not a tailwind affiliate. There are no tailwind affiliate links here.
In fact, I’ve used tailwind for two years, consistently, to grow another website and I want to share with you the good and the bad about tailwind so you can make a conscious choice before signing-up.
In addition, I’ll explain why I stopped using it this year (2020) and my results. (Manual pinning is actually not as bad as they make it sound like…especially that now Pinterest wants you to pin fresh and fewer new pins!)
Tailwind was the only obvious alternative after Boardbooster shut down. Boardbooster was a scheduler that most bloggers used to schedule and re-share pins. Unfortunately, it shut down after Pinterest policies about duplicate content changed.
Full Disclosure: This page contains affiliate links. If you decide to purchase through my links, I’ll receive a commission. But you won’t pay more.
When I joined tailwind, I wasn’t sure what to expect, so I followed tips and tutorials inside this Pinterest course (which I recommend to everyone who’s serious about Pinterest).
Tailwind Best Features
Here’s what I really loved about tailwind:
The scheduler: I’m a visual person and I really loved seeing my pins scheduled with the date/time they’re going out. When you hover on the pin, you can see the time it’s scheduled to be published as well as to which board.
Tailwind tribes: I really loved the tribes. Tribes are similar to group boards. When you request to join, and you’ll either be automatically approved or wait until the tribe admin approves you. Then, you can share your pins with members of the tribe, as well as schedule tribe members’ pins to your scheduler (to mix it up with yours).
This surely gave my pins more exposure. When a tribe member shares your pin with their followers, your pins get more exposure that way.
Tailwind Facebook page tutorials: What great thing about Tailwind as a company is that they truly care about their customers. Whenever there is a new Pinterest update, they make sure to create a training or tutorial, or even interview a Pinterest staff to address the latest changes.
Yes, you don’t need a membership to take advantage of their training, but as a member, you’d get notified I guess. You can also just enable notifications on their page 🙂
The Smart Guide: If you’re just starting out with Pinterest and you’re not sure what guidelines to follow, tailwind has updated the dashboard with a tool called the Smart Guide. This tool monitors your activity, pinning frequency to ensure they are aligned with Pinterest’s best practices.
A lot of newbies go on a pinning spree to grow their new boards. Pinterest made it clear that duplicate content is not encouraged. They want fresh new pins.
So pinning a lot, and pining the same pins is considered duplicate content and can trigger the spam filter to block your account. So if you’re not sure how to go about this, the tailwind smart guide can be helpful. In addition, Tailwind is a Pinterest partner so they’re always updated with the latest best practices.
What I Didn’t Like About Tailwind
Below are things I didn’t like about Tailwind or tools I ended up not using. It may be different for others, but I’m just giving my personal opinion and how it affected my blogging business. I understand if you disagree. But this is a review post so here’s my honest review…
Not using all the features I paid for: After the latest Pinterest changes about duplicate content, I ended up stopping all my Smartloop scheduling.
The SmartLoop is the tool that automates the pinning of popular pins. Like a set and forget pinning tool. And that was kind of why I joined tailwind…to automate my pinning process.
I was concerned these pins getting flagged as duplicate content (which they’d be) and I ended up abandoning the tool and just scheduling new fresh pins that I made. (this goes into the reason why I left tailwind also, which I’ll talk about below).
I understand it’s not tailwind’s fault that Pinterest best practices changed, but the membership cost didn’t go down, so I ended up paying for a tool I wasn’t using.
Confusing: The first time I looked at the dashboard, my eyes were going everywhere. It’s super busy with data, images, texts, and boxes and it can be overwhelming.
The tribe’s dashboard is really overwhelming and confusing. It can also take forever to load.
So I’m not a big fan of that. I expected this tool to make things easier, not to overwhelm me even more.
Analytics: I followed all the tutorials in the world about tailwind analytics and it’s still not clear to me. Yes, I understand how many followers I gained but things like the engagement score, virality score, and engagement rate don’t make sense because there is no baseline.
I am not sure how to set goals if I don’t know how high those numbers can get.
So I haven’t been relying on Tailwind analytics because they haven’t been helpful. I like to just use Google Analytics to see top pins and then figure out how to make similar pins.
Why I decided To Not Renew My Tailwind Membership
Now I want to share why I decided to not use Tailwind anymore. I am not discouraging you to not use tailwind. I do think this tool has its place. But, I want to discuss the other side of manual pinning and why I decided to go that way. You can use this information to make your decision 🙂
Pinterest latest best practices favors fresh new pins
After Pinterest shared their new best practices, I started making fresh new pins for blog posts. I focused on the following things:
- Pin quality: better images
- Pin title: working on the title to include the keyword in bold clear letters
- Full descriptions optimized for keywords of the blog post
Focusing on keywords and less pinning truly changed my Pinterest results. And this was also more aligned with my goals…
… I want my pins to constantly bring in traffic, not just go viral then die off.
When you’re constantly pinning all day long, you’re focused on the short-term traffic. When you’re putting more effort into creating high-quality pins, you’re focusing on the long-term.
I started manually pinning 1-3 pins per day. Yes, this may seem low for you but it’s been working for me! When I pinned more, I noticed zero improvements.
This confirmed that Pinterest wants fresh new pins (and not so much a lot of pinning of duplicate pins)
I’m not scheduling that much anymore
Since I was making fresh new pins (and I’ve been using the Pinterest scheduling tool!), I wasn’t sure why I had to keep paying for Tailwind. I was pinning mostly my pins and if I can just schedule them directly to pinterest…why pay for a scheduler.
As I mentioned before, I wasn’t using the Smartloop feature anymore so this was a big reason why I left.
I love being on the app and seeing new updates
When I was using tailwind, I was barely on Pinterest. And this is actually bad!
I know that we all want to just automate and not have to do things ourselves, but if you’re focusing on Pinterest as a source of traffic, it’s your responsibility to learn this app really well and be up to date with all the changes first-hand. I’m not sure why we’re discouraged from that.
I started noticing a lot of cool features when I was on the app, like adding the tags when uploading a video pin. You can just add a video to see these tags and get keyword ideas, and use these keywords for image Pins!
I also started looking into my boards more. I found new ways to improve them…
… I noticed some boards didn’t have proper keywords, and a few were almost empty. I didn’t pay attention to any of this when I was mostly on tailwind.
I also really enjoy creating pins and so I don’t find this to be too much work. As I mentioned before, when you’re focused on using tailwind as a search engine and focus on keywords, your pins will rank for a long time. I have pins that have been doing really well for over 2 years!
Once you get to the top, you’ll stay there for a long time (if not forever! Let’s hope!).
I’m more conscious about my pins and analytics
Now that I’m spending more time on Pinterest, I’m seeing how pins are doing. I can see the recent pins and how much engagement they got.
I used to never pay attention to those things. It’s a good way to see which pins are doing really well, and in which boards. You can then model those pins to create more like them!
If you schedule a bunch of pins to Tailwind, you’re not taking the time to analyze them, especially if you’re scheduling too many every day.
I also didn’t like the Pin Inspector tool on Tailwind. I have to make so many clicks to get the data I want (which discouraged me to even do it).
And I still can’t find how many clicks I got from the pins. It only shows me repins. On Pinterest, it’s so easy to get this data as soon as you log in (you can see all the recent pins, engagement, repins, and click-throughs)
I hope this was helpful. I really like Tailwind, I don’t want this post to feel like I’m hating on the product.
It can be very useful for beginners. I feel like many bloggers have a negative opinion about manually pinning (and I understand that promoting a scheduling tool may have something to do with that), but for me, I found that I really enjoy manual pinning.
And as I mentioned before, Pinterest has a scheduling tool also!
My plan right now is to continue with manual pinning. So far, I’ve been seeing higher traffic (more than ever). I grew my traffic to 200k from 20k with manual pinning.
For some reason, I feel Pinterest loves manual pinning (but I’m not sure). I’m going to continue to experiment and keep tracking my results. If things keep going up, I’m going to follow the data!
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