Pinterest Advertising Guide

Pinterest Advertising: The Ultimate Beginner’s Guide

They’re finally here! After a long wait, Pinterest Ads are now available in Germany and Austria, too. By enabling this feature, Pinterest offers you a whole new world of options for pinning your business to success.

In this blog post, we are showing you the different ad formats that are available, along with the differences in campaign goals and how to optimize tracking of Pinterest Ads. You will also learn how to set up Pinterest Ads through our step-by-step guide, plus some nifty tricks for a successful start.

Why looking into Pinterest is worthwhile

Sure, there’s Instagram and Facebook. But Pinterest? Still, many businesses overlook the social network in their Social Media strategies, even though Pinterest had 250 million active users per month in autumn of 2018, and growing. A large number of users focuses heavily on certain pins in order to find inspiration for shopping. And even those not actively looking for it end up finding things they want to check out on their next shopping trip. According to their own stats, Pinterest is 33% more effective than Facebook in bringing traffic to your online shop.

Pinterest Traffic Shopping Sites
Pinterest is a traffic generator for your online shop. (Source: Pinterest Business)

Up until now, German and Austrian companies had the disadvantage of paid Pinterest Ads not being available in their countries. This is about to change, and there might be a newly heightened interest in the platform very soon.

Are you new to Pinterest? You’ll find all the information you need to get started successfully in our blog post “Pinterest Marketing 101: Everything Companies Need to Know”.

An overview of various ad formats

Similar to other platforms, Pinterest offers a variety of ad formats. They all grow your reach by showing up in topic feeds, the home feed, and in search results of the selected target group. At the moment, four different ad formats are available.

1. Promoted Pins

Promoted Pins are the basic version of Pinterest Ads. They look like regular Pins but are marked as being advertorial content.

2. Promoted Video Pins

The video format is very successful on Pinterest as well. In addition, content can be shown in more detail by using video clips instead of regular Pins.

3. Promoted App Pins

Promoted Pin Apps are specifically targeted towards companies that sell their own apps. They offer the opportunity to download your app by simply clicking on the respective ad – no detours necessary.

4. Promoted Carousels

Everyone who is familiar with Facebook Ads is probably well aware of the carousel format. We are talking about a Pin that consists of 2 to 5 pictures or cards that users can swipe through directly in their feed. They can also tap on the carousel and view the pictures in a larger format. Every picture can be linked to an individual landing page, which makes Carousel Pins ideal for promoting several products or services within just one story.

Types of campaigns

Selecting a campaign goal determines which Pins are available to you and how billing works:

  • Brand awareness: If you want to increase your brand awareness, you will be billed per every 1000 impressions.
  • Video impressions: The same is true if you use videos to increase your brand awareness.
  • Traffic: The aim of traffic campaigns is to direct Pinners to your website. Accordingly, on this plan, you are billed on a per click basis.
  • App installation: If you are looking to have as many people as possible downloading your app, you have the option of billing per click or installation. You can choose between “Completed app installation” and “Traffic to your download page”.

Your Targeting Options

Pinterest Advertising Targeting Options Interests
Pinterest allows you to select target groups according to interests.

At the moment, a limited number of targeting options are available in Germany and Austria:

  • Demographic data: Select your target group by gender, location, and language.
  • Interests: By adding topics that are relevant to your brand or products, your Ads will be shown to Pinners who have shown interest in Pins with similar topics in the past. You can choose bigger topics, such as “health” at the top level, and then add further, more detailed topics such as “diet and nutrition” or “weight loss” to that greater topic.
  • Keywords: The Keywords option is used to reach users who are searching for a given word on Pinterest. A variety of matching options increases targeting precision. You can also come up with negative keywords and thereby exclude certain words from the search results.
  • Remarketing: You can get in touch with clients who have already been in contact with your company or your contents. You can choose from customer email lists, website visitors, users who have interacted with your company’s Pins, and users with a large overlap with valuable target groups (“act-alike audience”).
  • Devices: Choose whether you want your ads to be displayed on all devices or only on certain ones, like iPads, the Web, or Android Mobile.

Targeting according to age is only available in the USA right now.

The more you know about your target group, the more successful your marketing will be – on Pinterest, Facebook, or Instagram. Download our e-book “The Psychology of Social Media Marketing” for free right now and learn how to provide your target group with exactly what they are looking for.

The Psychology of Snapchat Marketing

Download our eBook and learn about the psychological principles that keep Snapchat’s community going, and how this affects your marketing strategy. To ensure an in-depth and thorough approach, we’ve also included the interviews of 5 Snapchat experts. Find out why your brand should be on Snapchat, what content works best and which tools to use.

Creating campaigns – A step-by-step guide

So you have decided to work with Pinterest Ads. Then your first step is to set up a Business Account – you can do so with just a few clicks. In order to start a campaign, follow these steps:

  1. Click on “Ads” in the top left corner of the Ads Manager, then click on “Create an ad”. You can also simply click on “+” on the top right.
  2. Decide on a campaign goal.
  3. Select a previously created campaign through the search bar, or enter the name of a new one.

Pinterest Advertising Campaign Details
If you prefer the carousel format, you can decide on using it right at the start of setting up your campaign.
  • Define a spending limit through “Daily Budget” or “Lifetime Budget”. This step is optional.
  • Create a paused campaign by ticking off “pause campaign”.
  • Select a previously created group of ads, or create a new one.
  • Define your target group. Through “Create a new target group” you can, among other things, focus on clients on your customer list.
  • Concerning your ads’ placement, “All” is selected by default on Pinterest. Alternatively, you can select “Browse” or “Search”. In case of the former, your ad is displayed in the Start Feed and with related Pins, in case of the latter, in the search results and related Pins. Generally speaking, “Browse” works better for targeting according to interests, and “Search” for targeting according to keywords.
  • In the next step, you can add interests and keywords. For optimal results, Pinterest recommends adding at least 25 keywords.
  • Enter a budget and schedule. Set a daily spending limit via selecting “Daily Budget”, or a limit for the entire duration of the campaign by selecting “Lifetime Budget”.
  • Enter your maximum bid for “Optimizing” and “Delivery”. Ticking off “Accelerated” instead of “Standard” allows for a quicker spending of the budget. This might result in your full budget being spent before your campaign is planned to end, but it will never be exceeded. This option is worth a shot if you want to make a big impact in a short amount of time.
  • Finally, select Pins for your campaign, or create new ones. Equip them with a name and an URL. Note that these Pins must not be saved on secret boards, or show third-party videos or GIFs.

How Pinterest’s bidding system works

On Pinterest, ads are being delivered to your target audience in the same manner as on Facebook: through an auction. The highest bidder does not always win the prominent ad space, because two more factors are being taken into consideration:

  • The various ads’ respective chances of success.
  • Quality and relevance of ads for the target group.

This means that not only the amount of money you want to spend matters but also how well your ad fits the target location. Nonetheless, your bid shouldn’t be too small, or the chances of your ads being displayed often will dwindle. Pinterest offers you guidance in the bidding process by informing you how well your bid is doing in comparison to others (too low, suitable, or too high).

It might very well happen that you are paying less than your original bid for your ad since Pinterest is only ever charging enough to outbid the next closest bid in an auction.

Tracking with Pinterest Tag

By clicking on “Analytics” in the top left corner, you get a first impression of your campaigns’ efficiency, including all clicks, the engagement rate, and CPC. Select any given campaign to receive more detailed information about it.

Additionally, you can use a Pinterest Tag for tracking. This Tag is a piece of JavaScript code that you can integrate into your website in order to enable the tracking of 9 conversion activities:

  • PageVisit: Views of primary pages, such as article or product pages
  • ViewCategory: Views of category pages
  • Search: Search queries on the website
  • AddToCart: Articles that have been added to the shopping cart
  • Checkout: Completed transactions
  • WatchVideo: Video views
  • Signup: Registrations for products or services
  • Lead: Downloads and contact requests on your page
  • Custom: Customized events

Learn how to set up your Pinterest Tag in this video:

Tips for successful campaigns

Once you have set the framework for your campaigns, your ads’ success is primarily determined by your Pins. The following tips will help you reach your goals.

Value quality

Attention-grabbing visual content is the prerequisite for getting Pinners to click on your ads. Use pictures in portrait orientation, ideally in a 2:3 ratio, and pay close attention to using high resolution and a professional appearance.

Provide Action

Lifestyle pictures and videos are the be-all and end-all on Pinterest. Therefore, be sure to show your products or services “in action”.

Include text

Considering images are at the center of Pinterest, you still shouldn’t neglect words. Text overlays with a Call to Action may increase your sales by 6 per cent, according to Pinterest. Signal words like “new” enhance your ads’ effectiveness even more.

Use really good descriptions

Descriptions are the place for giving valuable added information to your users and incentivizing them to click once and for all. The first 30 to 60 characters are most significant, since the rest may potentially not be displayed in the feed. Pinterest also recommends to mention the name of your brand right at the beginning of the description, in order to increase brand awareness.

Use How-to videos

Create ads with added value for other Pinners. How-to videos, along with Storytelling videos, are particularly successful, according to a study by Pinterest.

For some industries, Pinterest Ads are particularly promising

Pinterest Ads can be valuable to companies from a variety of industries. However, some topics are especially popular on the platform – traditionally, Health, DIY, Fashion, and Beauty products. In general, companies that can display their products or services in the form of pretty images have an advantage over those who can’t. With a dash of creativity, however, Pinterest is also a great fit for insurances, financial service providers, or lawyers.

Pinterest Ads are especially useful for increasing your reach and approaching people outside of your community. The fact that Pinners spend more money on shopping than other people, according to a recent study, is an additional reason for trying out Promoted Pins. It’s key to have high-quality Pins, and first decide on who you want to show your ads to, and where. This way, you will be able to make the most of your plus in reach.

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