A few months ago, my cousin found an image of mine that I’d taken of my dog, Pepe, on a Facebook page with over 100,000 likes. Hot dog!
While I was gratified by the hundreds of likes and comments (yes, my dog is adorable), I did kick myself a little for not having watermarked the image. Had I done so, I could have included my company name and even my website address.
Aside from the fact that Pepe’s insisted on a raise and a better office, no harm and no foul. Even though I didn't get credit for it, I really didn’t mind that my image was used to entertain and ultimately raise the Facebook Page's “talking-about-this” score -- it was for a good cause.
But, what if you made your money off your art, and an uncredited share like that felt more like stealing than a commentary on your dog’s cuteness?
Or, what if you bristle at the thought of people pinning and repinning your images on Pinterest, where the only way you get credit is if someone properly links to you as the original source and the pinners click through to your site?
This is where watermarks come in!
How to Create a Watermark for a Pinterest Image
Using an image-editing program that allows you to adjust transparency, create your watermark. It may be your business name, logo, URL, or a combination. Generally, it should be one color (usually white), have a transparent (not solid) background, and not so busy that it makes looking at a watermarked image completely unbearable!
No image-editing software? That’s okay. If you have an image with a transparent background (as in our logo, shown above), we can adjust the transparency and remove the color in the next step. Even if you don’t, you can still make a super-simple watermark -- no software required.
For instance, PicMonkey gives simple directions for adding a watermark, assuming you have one all ready to go. If you don’t have an image to use, you can create one right in PicMonkey!
No need to log in -- just upload the image you need to watermark by hovering over “Edit a photo.” You can then click to upload or just drag a photo there.
Then, if you have your own watermark image, you can:
1) Click the "Overlay" (butterfly) button.
2) Select "Your Own" and upload your watermark.
3) If you don’t have a watermark image, you can use text. To do so:
Click on Text.
Choose a font.
Type your text over the image.
Adjust the size of the font with the Text control box.
Adjust the size and position of the text box by dragging the corners or the entire box, respectively.
Still, you might have an image without enough transparency and maybe too much color. No worries!
While you still have your overlaid image or your added text selected, grab the color selector and drag it all the way up to make it white (or stop somewhere along the way if you prefer). Then, give the watermark the customary transparency by dragging the “fade” slider up until you are satisfied with the results.
If I’d done that with my image of Pepe, I could have had all sorts of dog-lovers coming to our site. Who knew it would be so popular?!
Another Way to Get Some Credit on Pinterest
If your readers are pinning using the Pinterest bookmarklet on Chrome, the Alternative Text you put on the image will become the default pin description. You can include your Pinterest username here to increase chances that people will see the original source of the image. Most people don’t bother editing the description of pins.
Originally published Dec 13, 2013 4:00:00 PM, updated March 15 2019