How to use Pinterest for Business for your Digital Marketing
A case study with KPIs and Insights
Have you tried Pinterest for Business in your digital marketing mix? If not, then it is about time to get familiar with this new platform. In this article I want to share the insights and results from a digital marketing campaign we conducted for our clients. At the end you will find a list of Frequently Asked Questions we received after our webinar, where we introduced this case study.
Your additional resources: Below you can find
- The complete video recording from the webinar.
- A series of podcast episodes about this topic.
- The presentation slides from the webinar in a swipe-able format.
- The Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) from the webinar and management briefings.
If you need help with your digital marketing strategies, contact our digital marketing agency. We are here and happy to discuss your requirements and provide ideas, strategies and tactics to help you achieve your goals.
Application of Pinterest in local Healthy Nutrition and Lifestyle Industry
Our client is a locally well known brand in the sector for healthy nutrition and lifestyle. The brand is quite strong and enjoying increasing awareness. We worked with the client previously to get their website ranked in the top 1-3 positions in search engine results.
For this project the client approached us about a new educational event series. The owner of the business was looking for a way to increase event registrations from potential clients with a high affinity for the major product lines of her business: healthily lifestyle, healthy nutrition, mental and physical health.
Why we chose Pinterest for Business for this campaign
When we narrowed in on a suitable mix of platform, channel, creative and targeting we also had Pinterest on our list. This was a highly controversial topic. Why? Pinterest had not yet been tested for local marketing and event based conversions. Also, it was not clear we if were able to build up and target an audience is a short period of time.
For any campaign you always need to ask the key questions:
- Can you find the key target group on Pinterest?
- Is there enough inventory i.e. potential customers looking for what you have to offer in the timeframe you are looking for?
- Can you generate conversions?
- Can the campaign surface demand efficiently, i.e. at acceptable cost per acquisition (CPA)
On the other hand, Pinterest offered something very unique which could be helpful for this particular project:
- An audience which is looking for inspiration
- Visually oriented content search, which aligned well with the quality and type of content we had.
- And after some research we also surfaced an audience which matched the affinity categories of products and services.
Pinterest Campaign Performance – Case study results
After the initial sprint of two weeks we saw already encouraging results in terms of build up of the Pinterest audience:
- Total audience size: 130’000 members.
- Interacting audience: 2’400 members.
- Conversions: 95 conversion events.
- Engagement rate around 2%.
The efficiency of the Pinterest for Business campaign revealed promising results:
- CTR: 16%
- CPC: € 0.67
- CPA: € 4.21 per conversion
- Close-up rate: 1.9%
- Click-to-closeup ratio: 16.3%
- 8 times more mobile users than desktop PC users.
- Surprisingly few tablet PC users.
- 2.5 times higher engagement rate of mobile users.
- High affinity with the brand and content.
Pinterest Marketing Campaign Insights and Key Takeaways
On Pinterest demand can be surfaced very quickly and efficiently. The audience build up produces results fairly quickly. This enables you to check early if there is a good match between the audience and your ideal target group.
Local, regional targeting is possible but still somewhat limited. Unlike other platforms like Facebook, at the moment you cannot target customers very precisely based on their geographical location. We invented some work-around tactics to narrow our targeting as much as possible.
The engagement rate and click rate may be somewhat low. This is still in line with results we see on other platforms for initial campaigns. Continued optimization of creative, copy, call-to-action and benefit proposals can push this boundary.
Keep an eye on the “Click to Close-up Ratio” to pick winning Pins! This is not a KPI that is reported out of the box by Pinterest. But you can easily calculate it yourself. You can do this when you decide which Pins to keep and which to remove from the campaign.
Mobile friendliness is key: Make sure to optimize both your pins and your landing pages for mobile user experiences.
Pins with rich data convert higher. In the sample campaign for our client we implemented structured data (aka schema) to surface rich data right into the pins. This turns out to be favourable for the creative and content and it also produces higher engagement rates.
Retargeting: You need to pay special attention to keep your audience engaged. Unlike in other platforms the membership duration of our audience is set to one month (Update: This was true at the time of the study. Meanwhile you can set the value to up to 540 days). At the time of this campaign this could not yet be changed. What means that your audience declines after one month if you do nothing.
Watch the Pinterest Case Study Video
Swipe through the Presentation from the Webinar
FAQs – Frequently Asked Questions from our Pinterest Marketing Webinar
The Pinterest click and conversion funnel is slightly different from other platforms. There is an important step: The customer browses through her feed and boards or she is using the search function to find new inspiration.
When an image or video looks interesting she is clicking on it. This is called the close-up. This is an important step in the funnel. Your combination of creative, content and targeting needs to be optimized for this step.
When the content looks interesting and she wants to learn more, she clicks on a link which leads to the landing page.
On the landing page she might convert, e.g. purchase a product, register for an event or sign-up for mailing list.
In our test campaign we tested different campaign types. First we created an awareness campaign. Then we added a conversion focused campaign. And after we had a significant audience we launched a retargeting campaign.
For these initial campaigns we did not produce much additional content or creative. We just used existing content we augmented (e.g. through structured data for recipes).
The next level are video based campaigns, which can accelerate your reach and conversion significantly.
Besides the size and composition of your audience I recommend keeping an eye on conversion and efficiency metrics such as CTR, CPA and the ratio of close-ups to click-throughs. These metrics are available from the Pinterest campaign report. They should be monitored frequently at the beginning to ensure you are betting on the right tactics.
The ratio of close-ups to click-throughs is an indicator how well a pin performs. A high performing pin attracts the attention and entices the user to close up to learn more. This can be a swipe through, watching a video or reading the recipe of the pin. The CTR, click-through ratio tells you how many users who saw the pin clicked on a link which takes them to your website. A pin with a high ratio of clicks to close-ups does a better job in taking your interested audience to your website. We used this simple filter to bet on the higher converting pins and weed out lower performing pins.
A community is defined as the number of Followers on your Pinterest account.
An audience is defined as the number Pinterest users who saw or engaged with your content on Pinterest.
In the campaign situation with our client we started from scratch. In other words: we did not start with a community we could build on. Instead we created and built up an Audience rapidly. We used this audience for target potential customers with suitable content.
That means you do not have to wait until you have a lot of followers. You can target an addressable market immediately. We chose this tactic because otherwise it would take forever and we could not help our client meeting her campaign objectives.
Here is in this example from IKEA Germany you can get a sense of the size of the audience (5M) and community (132k Followers).
First of all you need to have the basics in place: a mobile friendly website or landing page. Your pins need to be mobile friends. That means they must be easily readable for example. You can also create pins which are swipe-able on mobile devices. Then we implemented structured data (schema) on the website. Pinterest can detect these schema and pull the information right into the pin – nicely formatted. This is enriching and augmenting the content. For example, we used structured data for healthy nutrition recipes. These showed up very nicely in the pins. It turned the normal pin into a so-called “Rich Data Pin”. And of course the Pinterest algorithm loves these pins as well!
We found that mobile devices (smart phones) are much more important than tablets and desktop PCs. There were 8-10 times more users with mobile devices. Also the engagement rate of smartphone users was 2.5-3 times higher.
While Pinterest is not yet capable of very detailed local marketing, it can be used for targeting a local or regional user audience. You can use the targeting options in Pinterest. Also, producing content which is more relevant for the local users plays an important role.
This question is about membership duration. The Pinterest audience membership duration is one month. We tested this in our first campaigns and found that the default and only option at the moment. Maybe that is changing in future. On other platforms the retargeting audience membership can defined more flexible, for example up to 540 days.
But the one month membership also makes some sense for marketing on Pinterest. Here you find an audience which is looking for inspiration for something they want to do shortly, for example remodelling a room, cooking or preparing presents.
Check out my blog post about remarketing dynamics.
Follow us on Pinterest
In this case study I shared some of the insights and early results from Pinterest for Business campaigns. Pinterest offers a new way and opportunities for digital marketing. With the right marketing mix and campaign configuration you can build an audience with a high affinity to your brand, products and services.
If you need help with your digital marketing campaigns, check out our digital marketing agency WITTIGONIA digital.
Let’s talk about your specific requirements and how digital marketing ideas, strategies and tactics could help you and your teams.