How to Use Pinterest Ads 2020

Have you ever wondered how Pinterest works for businesses? Aside from Facebook, Google, and Instagram, most businesses are also engaging consumers using Pinterest by posting fascinating images and colourful infographics that promote deals and new products. The most important part is, like other social media channels, Pinterest can help create brand awareness and can possibly facilitate website leads. 

If your target market is doing research before buying your services or products, then there’s a high chance they are using Pinterest in that process!  It’s a Platform built for research; you can “Pin” blog articles, images and products and save these as “Boards” that you can store your favourites for whatever topic you are researching.  We see this commonly used for things such as wedding planning, party planning, meal planning, recipes, content planning and heaps more!  Pinterest has fast become one of the worlds largest search engines for it’s clever functionality and usability for consumers and business owners alike.

In this article, we will be guiding you on how to put up your business on Pinterest. Let’s start pinning!


How to advertise on Pinterest

As from the 250 million users of Pinterest, more than half of these Pinterest users have made a purchase after seeing business content on the site. With this number, you can say that this is really an effective platform to drive awareness. It’s no wonder a lot of businesses are jumping into Pinterest. Curious now?  Here’s the 11 step-by-step guide on how to set up your Pinterest campaigns.


Step #1: Get a Business Account

First things first, you need an account! If you already have an account you can easily convert it to a business account or you can create a new one for your business. Upon creating your business, you will need to give some pieces of information, such as business name, details about your business, your email address, website etc).


Step #2: Install the Pinterest Tag

Before starting your campaign, you need to install the Pinterest Tag. With the Pinterest Tag, you will be able to measure how effective your ads are at sending traffic to your website including checkouts, sign-ups, and searches.  If you have a WordPress, Shopify or Squarespace website, there should be plugins or apps that allow you to do this quickly and easily.


Step #3: Choose your Campaign Goal

Now, to start your campaign, you must go to and enter in your objective. It is important to choose the right objective because it will determine how you bid in the ad auction and what ad formats are available to promote. Always remember to choose the objective that reflects your business goals.


Step #4: Create an Ad Group

Ad Groups will help you manage multiple goals within a single campaign. This is like a container of your Promoted Pins. Each ad group can have a different targeting and assigned budget.


Step #5: Choose your Target Audience

In this step, you’ll be setting the parameters for the audience you would like to reach. This will be based on their gender, location, language, and device. Note that if your campaign objectives are traffic or awareness, you should use a broad targeting strategy to avoid low click volume.


Step #6: Add Interests and Keywords

By adding interest and keywords, you can expand your targeting. This will ensure that your ads are reaching those you targeted to relevant searches and interests.

Keywords can also be a great help by using a minimum of 25 words.


Step #7: Select Ad Placement

There are two primary choices for your ads to appear, it can be in “Browse” and “Search”, but if you have enough budget, you can go all placements default.

Browse Placements: Your ads will appear as people browse their home feeds and related Pins.

Search Placements: Your ads will appear in search results and related Pins.


Step #8: Set your Budget and Schedule

In this step, you will set up your budget if it is a daily or a lifetime budget. The daily budget will set your daily spending limit. For the lifetime budget, this is the total amount you want to spend between your start and end date. Take note that you need to be careful in what you add here, you cannot edit this later on.


Step #9: Optimization, Delivery and Determining your Pacing

This part is also known as your target CPM (Cost-per-Mile) rate. Start by setting a maximum bid for your ads, the minimum bit must be above $2.00

Pacing will determine how your budget is spent over the length of your ad group. It ensures that your overall spend aligns with your bids. There are two types of pacing options, Standard and Accelerated.

Standard: The budget is aligned to your bids across the lifetime of your campaign.

Accelerated: The budget is spent as quickly as possible, meaning, faster delivery of your budget and faster results.  

Also, take note that Pinterest will never spend over your daily or total budget caps, but accelerated pacing may drain your budget before your campaign end date.


Step #10: Pick your Promoted Pins

Now, you can pick to add Pins to your ad group! Each group ad should include two-four Pins. You can either create new Pins or you can pick Pins that you’ve added before. Assign each Pin a name and a URL.


Step #11: Monitor Campaign Performance

Like Facebook, Pinterest also has Analytics on the Pinterest Ads Manager dashboard that measures the performance of your campaign. You’ll have access to the overview of all campaigns and key metrics, including total clicks or impressions; engagement rate or CTR (Click-Through-Rate), average ECPM (Earned and Non-Earned Cost-Per-Impression), ECPC (Effective Cost-Per-Click) and total spend.

Click on a specific campaign to view its performance details.


How to Optimize your Pinterest Ads

Now that you have set up your account and posted your first Pinterest campaign, you need to monitor its performance. 

  • Open Ads Manager and Review your Current Performance

Log in to Ads Manager and it will bring you to the overview page. This will give you the whole view of your campaign performance.  Click on the objective you would like to optimize. Once clicked, you’ll land on a reporting view, a detailed breakdown of a variety of different metrics.

To review, select “overview” to see metrics that are tied to your campaign objective. Pinterest itself will highlight the results that are relevant to the objective you selected for your campaign.  You’ll see CPM (cost per impressions), CPV (cost per view) reporting if your campaign goal is Brand Awareness or Video views, but if Traffic or App Installs, you’ll see CPC (Cost per Click) or CPI (Cost per Install) reporting.

You can also customize your reporting table by clicking the pencil icon. By doing this, you can only see the metrics that are important to you. You will be able to edit your views, save a report, override an existing reporting view or set a default reporting view. If you wish to see the report that you have previously created, select your report name from the “table” drop-down menu.

  • Optimize your Campaign

Optimizing can be a bit complicated but with your goal in your mind and a solid understanding, it can be easier than what you think. 

If you feel like you’re not spending enough of your budget, these tips can help you up to your volume.

    • Optimize or expand your targeting: Check if you are not missing an audience and you’re targeting all devices. Also, use Audience Insights for new opportunities to reach people who are interested in your content.
    • Increase your bid: To see if you’re competitive with how other advertisers are bidding, check your bid guidance at the bottom of your ad group page.
    • Choose which conversion you’ll count: Conversion is where your money is because this where the true value of your ads is ultimately measured. Pinterest will report conversions for engagements, views, and clicks. Decide for yourself which of these conversions you want to count.

      Note that conversion on Pinterest is a bit confusing because if I click your ad on April 1, but then I purchase on April 22, the conversion will appear on April 1.
    • Look for ways to increase your clickthrough rate: You have to make sure that your traffic ads have .55% CTR (Click-through-Rate). Any less than this percentage you are paying more than necessary for clicks, this means that you may be paying more than you need for conversions. Any more than this percentage, you’re getting a deal.

      Also, to avoid low CTR, make sure that your Pin is high-quality and impressive (as detailed in our creative best practices), contains a call to action and that the content of your Pin resonates with the audience you’re targeting.

      For CPM (Cost-per-Impression), if it’s low, try multiple images. Let them run for weeks and then turn off the ones with a lower CTR and higher CPM.


And, that’s it! It is important to understand what each click, impression, and conversion is worth to you. I hope you can use these guides and tips to get the result you want over time.

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