Promoted Pins are content pieces on Pinterest (called Pins) that are advertised through Pinterest’s ad platform. Promoted Pins are for businesses that produce consistent content and would like to attract a new audience. Promoted Pins produce increased audience engagement, higher conversions, and a boost in traffic from Pinterest users.
Once you start to use Promoted Pins as part of your advertising strategy, you may find that you need some expert advice to assist you in managing your Promoted Pins or optimizing your campaigns. Consider using Fiverr to hire an expert on Pinterest to help you maximize your Pinterest Advertising efforts.
How Promoted Pins Work
Pinterest is a visual social media platform that works like a web-based bulletin board, allowing you to save individual pieces of content, called Pins, into specific buckets, called boards. Pins are images that link to blogs, products, or websites outside of Pinterest. Boards are the way to categorize Pins, and typically have a similar theme.
Promoted Pins work by allowing you to select a Pin, choose a target audience and a budget, and then advertise that Pin by paying for additional Pinterest users to see it. Promoted Pins run on an auction system, called a pay-per-click platform.
Pinterest has two different places that ads can be seen. The first is in the home page feed, which is seen by users who are browsing on Pinterest. The second is in search results on Pinterest, if the words used in a user’s search match keywords within the ad.
If you set up your Promoted Pins correctly, you could see close to an ROI of $2 for every $1 spent on Promoted Pins. Additionally, 93 percent of Pinterest users use Pinterest to plan future purchases (of both products and services), so using Promoted Pins to consistently be seen by Pinterest users can dramatically increase conversion rates.
If you’d like to learn more about other types of Pinterest Advertising, read our article Pinterest Advertising: What It Is & How to Do It.
How to Set Up Your Promoted Pin Campaign
Setting up a Promoted Pin campaign in Pinterest requires setting up a Pinterest Business Account, setting up a Pinterest Advertising account, researching your target audience, determining your Promoted Pin campaign goals, and selecting a campaign budget.
Here is how to set up your Promoted Pin campaign in 12 steps:
1. Set Up Your Pinterest Business Account
In order to run Promoted Pins, you have to have a business Pinterest account, which involves entering your business name, website, and brief description within Pinterest. Having a business Pinterest account not only allows you to run ads on Pinterest, but it will give you access to analytics through Pinterest as well some branding options like featured boards and a website link.
Here is how to set up your Pinterest Business account:
Go to the Pinterest Business Portal
Navigate to the Pinterest business portal and select “Sign Up.” This will direct you to a form that will ask you to enter your email, password, and business name. You will want to use your business email account. Doing this will be helpful if you ever need to contact Pinterest support for help or answers to questions. If your email is not tied to your website domain, you may have to further verify your identity.
Enter Your Business Information
Now you will want to enter your business information into the form to create your business account. Your business name is the name that will show up on your Pinterest profile and any Pins that come from you.
Before entering your company name as your business name, consider someone who is looking on Pinterest for what your business does. What would they type into the search bar to find you? Since Pinterest is truly a search engine, it’s important that you choose a business name that shows what you do, so that you show up for people are searching for your business.
Pinterest allows you to change your business name at any time, so if you want to change it later, you can. Keep in mind, however, that selecting a business name that describes what you do won’t eliminate your branding; you will have a logo, colors, and a website link as part of your profile as well. If you have a short business name, you can include it in your Pinterest business name, along with what you do.
Next, enter your business information, such as email, and website URL. Then click “Create Account.”
Below you will see an example of how this will look to Pinterest users. This company’s name is Sacramento Street. But they choose the business name “Caitlin Flemming | Sharing interior design, style, what inspires me in my daily life.” This account for a California-based interior designer has grown a following of over 4 million people and 1.4 million monthly viewers.
2. Set Up Your Pinterest Advertising Account
Now you will need to set up your Pinterest Advertising account. To do this, simply go to ads.pinterest.com. This will allow you to enter the information needed to establish your Pinterest Advertising account. Once you have that entered that, you are almost ready to start running Promoted Pins.
3. Understand Who Is on Pinterest
Part of running Promoted Pins successfully is understanding your target audience on Pinterest. Spend some time searching and scrolling on Pinterest to see what is being Pinned and who is actively Pinning. Take a few notes so that you remember things that stand out to you and that you might want to use as inspiration in your Promoted Pins campaign.
Know Pinterest Users’ Demographics
Pinterest isn’t just for ecommerce, lifestyle brands, or bloggers. In fact, it has played a part in the growth of counseling companies, consultant firms, financial companies, real estate agencies, and even law firms.
Here are some key statistics about Pinterest users:
- The median age of a Pinterest user is 40.
- One in two millennials use Pinterest daily.
- 40 percent of Pinterest users make $100,000 or more a year.
- 81 percent of active Pinterest users are women.
Given these statistics and your research, determine the demographic makeup of your target audience, including their interests. This will be necessary when picking your audience for Promoted Pin campaigns.
4. Determine Your Promoted Pins Goals
Before you begin advertising, clearly define what your goals should be for your Promoted Pin campaigns. Decide what you want to achieve by using Promoted Pins, and what you would like your ROI to be.
Here are some common goals for your Promoted Pins:
- Increased website traffic
- Email list growth
- A boost in sales/revenue
Make a note of your primary goal(s), as these will determine the kind of Promoted Pin campaign content you run.
5. Define Your Promoted Pin Audience
When you are creating an audience for your Promoted Pins, it is important that you know who they are and what they might be interested in. Your goal is to define what audience will be interested enough in your products or services that they will click on your Promoted Pins. The best way to do this in a clear way is to build a customer profile. You can read more about how to build an in-depth customer profile in our article here on How to Create a Customer Profile.
Here are some key steps to building out the right Promoted Pin audience:
Collect Audience Demographic Information
You should know the age, gender, location, and income of your target audience. This will not only inform your campaign parameters, but also the kind of content you promote. As you piece together your customer profile, ask yourself:
- What’s your customer’s average age?
- What gender is your customer?
- What part of the world do they live in?
- What is their average income?
Explore Audience Interests
Customer profiles also include user interests. You want to determine what types of content will attract your audience to your Pinterest content. To do this, you will need to get creative, but try to answer these questions to narrow down your audience a little more:
- What are their values?
- What are their hobbies?
- What are they passionate about?
- What kind of lifestyle do they live?
Keep clear notes of this demographic and interest information so that you can target the right audience with your Promoted Pins.
6. Create Your Pins
Promoted Pins take the form of a graphic that you will Pin to a Pinterest board, so you will need to determine if you have the ability to create these graphics. You might want to look at a tool like Canva to see if you can create your own pins. But, if you or someone else on your team can’t create these Pins, you might want to think about hiring an expert graphic designer from a place like Fiverr.
If you are creating Pins yourself, keep these guidelines in mind:
- Make Your Images Attractive – Pinterest is a visual site, which means that creative, attractive, eye-catching Pins almost always perform the best. Always use high-quality images.
- Check Image Dimensions – Keep in mind that the composition and ratio of the images and color contrasts play a critical role in getting the attention of your audience. 600 x 900 pixels is ideal.
- Never Put a Call to Action (CTA) on an Image – You will include the call to action in the description of your Pin, but not in the image. Pins that include calls to action are often not approved by Pinterest, including those that don’t see a much lower click-through-rate (CTR).
7. Create Your Campaign
A campaign is the portion of your Promoted Pin that is focused on a specific objective or goal. Promoted Pins and Ads are terms that are interchangeable when you are creating your campaign. To create a campaign, click on the + button from your profile and select “Create Ad.” Then you will choose your campaign objective, which is your goal for this campaign.
The campaign holds the rest of the elements of your Promoted Pins campaign, including your audience and the content of the Promoted Pin itself. Also, inside the campaign, you can have different ads or Promoted Pins, along with different audiences, but each of the ads and audiences will be nested under the same campaign and have the same overall objective.
Here are the different campaign types and goals in Pinterest:
- Traffic Campaign – Traffic campaigns send people from your Pinterest ads directly to your website. You pay per click.
- Awareness Campaign – Awareness campaigns aim to get your business in front of new eyeballs on Pinterest—people who have not heard of your business before, do not really know what you do, or are not already interested in your brand. You pay per 1,000 impressions.
- Engagement Campaign – Engagement campaigns are designed to encourage Pinners to interact with your content within the Pinterest platform by saving or clicking your Promoted Pins. You pay per engagement action.
- App Install Campaign – Run this type of campaign to get more installs for your app. You can choose to pay by install or by click. When you pay for installs, the Pinterest algorithm adjusts your bid daily (within the maximum you set) based on the likelihood of install. When you pay for clicks, the ad is optimized for click traffic, like a normal cost-per-click campaign.
- Video Awareness Campaign – This is like an awareness campaign, but using Promoted Video Pins. You pay per 1,000 impressions.
Determine Your Campaign Budget
When you are setting up your campaign, you can set the lifetime budget. This cannot be changed and is meant to keep money spent on a specific campaign within a set budget. Later in the Promoted Pin setup process, you will be able to set a daily budget as well.
For example, if you have $500 to spend on Promoted Pins for getting 1,000 app downloads, and that is all that you can ever spend on reaching this goal, you might want to put this limit in your campaign lifetime budget.
Experience suggests that unless you know for a fact that you have an unchangeable budget for your campaign, you will want to avoid setting a lifetime maximum in this step.
Choose Your Placement
Pinterest will let you choose whether you want your Promoted Pins to show up only in search results, in the feed when users are browsing on Pinterest, or both. For best results, choose both search and browse. This will allow you to target potential customers through their interests and with keywords that they might use when they are searching for specific content or products.
8. Select Your Audience’s Interests
Interest is the broadest way to target your audience with your Promoted Pin. You can target something as broad as “beauty,” but you can also drill down to a more specific category like “Korean skincare.”
9. Choose Your Keywords
Keywords are the words that your ideal customer would use to search for your services or products using the Pinterest search bar. The process of adding keywords to Pinterest in the posts and for your Promoted Pins is called keywording. It means adding specific words from your niche or target market that allow Pinterest users to find your content.
Highly relevant keywords that you use in your ad will be the only way your Promoted Pin will be found in search. The interests you selected in the previous step will show up in the Pinterest feed of those who have shown interest in those topics, but carefully selected keywords are how your Promoted Pin will show up in a Pinterest search.
Pinterest’s ad platform will offer some suggestions when you start choosing your keywords, but a tool like the Pinterest Keyword Tool can help as well.
As you can see in the example image below that came up when searching for “vitamin C serum,” the following Promoted Pin was displayed:
Other keywords that would have also brought up this Promoted Pin include broad terms like “skincare” and specific terms like “allure serum.”
10. Set Your Bid
Now you will set your bid, which is the maximum amount you are willing to pay for each desired action (click, engagement, or impression) from a user on Pinterest. This is simply entering the maximum amount you are willing to pay for each action in the given box. By bidding on your ideal amount, you are put into an auction with other advertisers on Pinterest.
The minimum bids for Pinterest are:
- $0.10 Cost-per-Click – You are charged your bid amount each time someone clicks on your Promoted Pin.
- $0.10 Cost-per-Engagement – You are charged for each like, save, or share of your Promoted Pin.
- $5.00 Cost-per-Thousand – You are charged each time 1,000 people have seen your Promoted Pin.
The auction process for setting up ads can be confusing, but it simply means that you only pay the amount needed to top the next-highest bidder, so you won’t be charged your full maximum bid unless it’s required. This system is called a “second-price auction model” for ad bids.
11. Select the Pin You Created for Your Promotion
Now you will choose the pin you created previously to be your Promoted Pin. Double-check your description to be certain that you have included relevant and audience-specific keyword options. Then simply select it and then click “Order” to submit your Promoted Pin campaign for Pinterest approval.
Approval usually takes less than a couple hours. The only time Pinterest rejects a Promoted Pin is if it is against their terms of service. Once approved, your Promoted Pin will go live.
12. Track and Optimize Your Promoted Pins
After your first three full business days of using Promoted Pins, analyze your Promoted Pins performance. Start by going to clicking on “Ads” in the top left corner of your Pinterest account, and see what your reports look like. Be sure to review impressions and engagement to see if your campaign is hitting the right goals.
Optimizing your Pinterest Promoted Pins campaign means spending less to meet your traffic, click, or sales goals. But optimization means only changing one element at a time, so that you know if it worked to increase your campaign’s effectiveness.
Keep in mind that to get a true picture of analytics, give your Promoted Pins at least three full business days or one full weekend before you start to evaluate your overall results.
Pinterest suggests testing these different categories to see if you get better results:
- Ad creative (this is the actual pin)
- Bids and budgets
- Audience targeting (interests and keywords)
- Products or product presentation
Tweak Your Pin/Creative First
Always start by refining your creative, which is the graphic you created for your Pin, first. Often, just tweaking this to make it more attractive or have less text on it will create the results you are shooting for.
Also be certain that the Pin you are promoting is mobile-optimized. Be certain that you are within the ideal dimensions, which are 600 x 900 pixels. Check that the description in your Pin is vibrant and descriptive. Lastly, make sure that your description has a clear CTA, like “Learn More,” “Show Now,” or “Buy.”
Also, if you are selling products, be sure that you show your product in your Pin—and multiple products where possible. You can try to show different products that fit a similar theme, or the same product in different styles.
Expand Your Targeting
One simple way to get better results with your Promoted Pin is to increase your overall available audience. For instance, if you do business in both the U.S. and Canada, expand your targeting to include Canada too. If you’ve been targeting one gender, try targeting everyone instead; since targeting on Pinterest is based more on someone’s behavior (using interests or search keywords), this is an easy way to be seen by more people.
Increase Your Bid
If, after you have implemented the changes above and let each of them run for about three complete business days, you are still not hitting your goals, you can increase your bid. By doing this, you can be certain that your bid is competitive enough to reach as much of your audience as possible, within your budget.
Monitor Engagement and Conversions on Desktop & Mobile Devices
Eighty percent of Pinterest users access the platform from their mobile devices, so a large portion of your conversions will happen on mobile. Be certain that you look at the reports from Pinterest for both desktop and mobile when you are looking at your results. Pinterest says that mobile users contribute more towards engagement because repinning is higher on a mobile. Remember that repinning can eventually lead to conversions and sales.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
Is a Pinterest Business Account Free?
Signing up for a Pinterest business account is free. This will give you access to the reporting and analytics for Pinterest Business. It only costs money when you run ads on Pinterest. You can find out more about how to set up your business account in this article: What is Pinterest Marketing and How to Do It.
What Do Promoted Pins Cost?
Pinterest charges based on the type of Campaign Objective you choose. While you can set a campaign and daily budget, the minimum bids for Pinterest are:
- $0.10 (Cost-per-Click)
- $0.10 (Cost-per-Engagement)
- $5.00 (Cost per Thousand)
Find out more about Pinterest Advertising by reading What Is Pinterest Advertising and How to Do It.
How Do You Promote Content on Pinterest?
If you want to promote a specific product or service, use Promoted Pins. If you just want to increase overall visibility and organic traffic, create a marketing strategy for Pinterest. You can read more about that by reading The Ultimate Guide for Using Pinterest for Business.
Promoted Pins are a way to advertise your business to a new and active audience primed for conversions. Promoted Pins are for businesses that want to increase the awareness of their products or services or want boost their sales via a social platform. Promoted Pins help boost traffic to your website, expand your email list, and increase your customer base.
You might find that it is time consuming to manage all the elements of a Promoted Pin campaign. In that case, consider hiring a Pinterest expert or Pinterest Ads Manager from Fiverr to help ensure that your Promoted Pin campaigns are powerful, results-driven, and effective.