by Donna Amos | Featured Contributor
Advertising on various social media channels requires a different approach for each channel. Google+ handles things differently than Facebook or LinkedIn; and their audiences vary. If your audience is mainly female and attracted to visual demographic categories like fashion, home decor, or fitness, you’ll likely find them on Pinterest. 80% of Pinterest users are female. 88% are between the ages of 18 and 54.
Therefore, you should build a quality profile and use it to connect with your audience there. Pin visually attractive links to your profile boards. But, Pinterest offers a great advertising option called promoted pins. This can not only grow your following faster but also send more traffic to your website. Below are the five basic steps to constructing your own Promoted Pin Traffic Plan on Pinterest.
These basic steps will get you started, but you should spend some time exploring and experimenting with the many options. Discover what works best for you and your business. No two companies will benefit from the exact same combination of choices and settings. Build your own profitable plan on these foundational steps.
Step 1: Choose from Two Promoted Pin Types
Before you begin using Pinterest ads, spend a lot of time working inside the ads manager. Be sure to convert your existing Pinterest account to a business account for a few extra features. Within the ads manager interface, you’ll see that you have two options for your promotion type.
- Build Awareness– Promote brand awareness and boost views of your videos.
- Drive Consideration– Drive traffic back to your website.
Choose the option you want, give your campaign a title, and enter a budget. I always recommend starting small as you experiment with advertising. Begin with $30-$50 total budget. You can always increase it later if your efforts are successful.
Now you must choose a pin to promote in your advertising. Click the red button, which will show you all the previous pins on your account. Click one of those to select it. If you chose to boost engagement, one of your previous pins would be fine. To drive traffic to your website,
create a new pin, pin it to one of your boards, then return to the ads manager and choose it for your ad campaign.
Step 2: Set Up Audience Targeting
Pinterest ads targeting is similar to what you find on many other PPC platforms. There are two sections you’ll need to fill out: interests and keywords. Interests is much broader in scope, which usually isn’t ideal for PPC campaigns. However, if you’re just trying to build a following while targeting a general audience, it can work.
If your ad campaign is intended to drive traffic to your website, you should focus on the keyword section. Type in keywords you want to target in the search box of this section, then click any of the grey keywords that appear to add them to your campaign. The keywords you select will appear in blue at the bottom. Searching the site is one of the main ways that users find content, so you can get quite a few impressions on popular keywords. When someone searches for any of the keywords you select, they may see your ad, depending on your budget and settings.
You can also choose other targeting options besides keywords and interests.
- Locations – Choose over 210 specific places in the United States
- Language – Target specific languages
- Devices – Target desktop users or specific types of mobile users
- Gender – Target males, females, and/or people with unknown gender
Targeting only works well when you narrow down the potential audience so that it consists of your target demographic. But, avoid targeting so narrow that you only have a few hundred targeted users in your audience. You should choose targeting guidelines that represent your best possible client audience.
Step 3: Budget Considerations
Initially, you set a low total budget while you experimented with the ads and site. At this point, you must set your maximum CPC bid before the ad goes live. Often, you won’t have to pay this amount; sometimes far lower. But, after a few days, if you’re not getting the results you expected, increase your bid to allow more potential target users to see your ad.
Step 4: Track and Analyze Your Ad Results
Many want to skip this step because it’s boring. It isn’t as fun as creating the ad or choosing a targeted audience. But, if you don’t track your ad campaign results, you’ll never know whether advertising is actually profitable for you. And, you’ll never be able to increase the effectiveness of your ads. You won’t know what works and what doesn’t.
Pinterest provides some basic analytics for your ads. It covers all the basic stats like impressions, clicks, CPC, and total amount spent. So, you can keep up with how the ad performs. For conversion statistics, you will have to go to Google Analytics and set up specific plans for tracking what you consider to be a conversion from your Pinterest ads.
Step 5: Keep Experimenting
Even really experienced advertisers don’t get everything right on their first try with a campaign. Or even the second or third. That’s why tracking your results is so important. Once you have a set of baseline results, it’s a good idea to start split testing different promoted pins.
Try different variations of:
- The pin picture
- The ad headline
- The targeted landing page
Keep trying different variations, tracking your results, and optimizing your campaigns until they become profitable. Even when you achieve a winning ad, continue to optimize it as much as possible. And of course, when your ad is doing well, scale up its advertising budget to take advantage of the ad’s popularity.
Pinterest is a huge social media site, and advertising on it is still a process of experimentation. You can create and run a profitable promoted pins campaign on Pinterest. It just takes persistent experimentation and optimization to hit the right combination of factors.
What are your tips for using Pinterest promoted pins for advertising? Share your wisdom and experiences with us in the comment section below!
Donna Amos is passionate about helping Solopreneurs grow their business using everything digital and publishing. She has 30 years experience in sales and marketing for small business. She believes the best gift you can give another is a word of encouragement.