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Pinterest Ads: Can You Name The 3 Most Common Mistakes to Avoid?

Pinterest Ads: 3 Mistakes Marketers Must Absolutely Avoid

There’s no doubt that many ecommerce businesses have profited from the pandemic in 2020. Many of us were home bound and we had to make a major shift in how we shopped. And because of that the online world boomed. Pinterest was one of the lucky ones. 

But here’s the thing. As more and more advertisers flocked to Pinterest over Facebook you can assume that also drove up the level of competition for eye balls on Pinterest. Pinterest organic reach is more difficult than ever before which means if you want to reach your target audience as quickly as possible you will have to combine your organic activities with paid Pinterest ads to boost your content. Those paid Pinterest ads are called Promoted Pins, its Pinterest’s lingo. 

New, Fresh Relevant Content is No Longer Enough (Pinterest ads help)

I’m going to be very frank with you. Ever since Pinterest went public in April 2019 engagement metrics have started to go down dramatically. No matter how much fresh and relevant content you’re producing on Pinterest it’s just taking forever to get more clicks to your website. You see in the past you could click on the image and Pinterest would take you directly to the website where you could learn more or buy the item. It was instant, quick. But today, you literally have to click on the website link. You have to look for it. So it’s an extra step a user has to do. It’s not intuitive. That extra step is affecting the number of clicks you may have gotten used to getting in the past.  They have probably gone down.

Why You Can’t Afford NOT to Invest in Pinterest Ads

Listen, even if you know the secret to Pinterest’s forever changing algorithm just marketing on Pinterest organically is not enough anymore. Today the bottom line folks is you gotta invest in Pinterest ads. All my clients do. They have to. This is how Pinterest is now setting themselves up because they are a public company and are now driven by the profits of Pinterest ads.

Pinterest Ads / Promoted Pins Gives You a Lot of Data That You Won’t Find in Organic Content

The beautiful thing about the Pinterest ads is that you’ll be able to use the reporting data to make improvements better and faster to increase performance. You’ll be able to determine your best keywords, the best images for your vertical, who and where your biggest audiences are and more. You’ll get more data from investing in ads than you would have ever gotten from only growing your account organically. 

And that’s a good thing. 

More data faster = better decisions faster = more click throughs and sales faster.

How to Get The Most Out of Your Investment

Before you invest in Pinterest ads there are a few things you need to know so you get the most out of your investment. Managing Pinterest ads can be a pain in the butt. I kid you not. It’s complex, there are a lot of “rules” and best practices to learn so if you hate numbers plus analyzing every metric and then creating strategies to improve performance then Pinterest ads will be nauseating for you. Many brands (probably most) have simply done Promoted Pins incorrectly because of the complexity and then they wonder why they didn’t get any traffic or sales from Pinterest. 

With that in mind here are three big mistakes businesses make with Pinterest Ads:

1. They are not set-up correctly

To ensure you are working with the right data and information you must set-up your website correctly. If not the consequences can be very damaging to your investment.

a. You must have a Pinterest business account

Click here if you do not have one. It’s free to join.

b. Install the appropriate Pinterest App

You can do this here for Shopify. If you’re on Etsy, or an Amazon seller and the likes you won’t be able to set-up much since you need to have your own website. Certainly you can still buy ads but you have fewer options vs Shopify.

c. Billing

Ensure your company’s credit card and other information is up to date for billing purposes in your Ads Manager business profile, after you have installed the tag. You are not billed unless your ads campaign is launched (turned on) with your consent.

d. Install the PINTEREST TAG on your website

Tag Implementation: This link gives you a crash course on the Pinterest Tag and its implementation. This is the algorithm that is used to monitor the in and out flow of data to the relevant website and helps us analyze and optimize your ads campaigns. 

Check to make sure your Pinterest tags are working correctly.  

e. Pixel/Tag Placement

You must add the necessary event codes in addition to the base code.

Once again here is the implementation guide. Please be sure to generate your new Pinterest Tag # and update the YOUR_TAG_ID in the code to the 13 digits of the tag ID.

You should have this installed at least a week before any given launch to ensure proper functionality.

If you installed the Pinterest tag manually and want to use the Shopify app instead, you should remove any tags you manually installed before setting up the Shopify app. Make sure to remove the base code, Checkout code, and AddToCart code. You can only have one tag in an account.  If you run with 2 tags you will very likely create false metrics in your reports and that is not going to be good for performance optimization decision making.

By making sure you only have one correctly operating tag on your website it ensures that your reports will be accurate. 

Click here to follow the process. 

f. Apply to the Verified Merchant Program

A blue checkmark on your profile and pins letting people on Pinterest know you’ve been vetted. But more importantly Pinterest will always push those businesses that have been approved. That’s important! Click here to apply.

2. Being too conservative with your investment & making changes too fast

Many advertisers assume that you can just invest any amount and expect to get the return you had hoped for. I wish that was the case.  It is not.

Regardless of the size of your business, you need to start with at least $25 a day for Pinterest ads. I bet you didn’t know that. 🙂 That is the bare minimum for monthly campaigns. Why?

The more you invest the more data Pinterest can fetch faster which allows you to make better decisions about improvements faster which in the end gives you a better ROI.  If you invest a small amount like $10/day it might take a month for Pinterest to gather enough data for you to analyze and use to make optimization decisions.  Few will be patient enough to let a month go by and do nothing.

You see many don’t realize that Pinterest actually takes 14-21 days to just read your data, learn who your audience is, what keywords, interests and images they prefer etc. They call it the ramping period.  The Pinterest algorithm needs to learn your business, learn who in your audience is most likely to convert and what you are trying to accomplish.  Some people get impatient and go in before the 14-21 day learning period is over and make changes.  That tells the Pinterest algorithm to start all over again at day zero.  Soooo many people do themselves a disservice by not waiting for the process to unfold before they start fiddling with changes to get more click throughs. 

3. Unrealistic expectations with Pinterest Ads

When I speak with business owners the first thing they say is “I want to invest $ and I expect to get X back ASAP”.  That’s great.  I get it.  I own a business too. However, with marketing and especially Promoted pins on Pinterest it’s not as simple as that.

First of all, you have to choose the right campaign.  There are 3 main types and you need to know which one at this time is right for you. For example, you’d never want to just automatically choose a dynamic re-targeting campaign especially if you don’t have enough OF THE RIGHT TYPE of audience. Advertisers assume they should go with re-targeting to make immediate sales.  Ah wrong. You want to make sure for example that you have enough people in “add to cart” or “checkout” before you can successfully re-target.  If you don’t have the right numbers to begin with then you’re not going to see any results and you might mistakenly believe Pinterest ads don’t work.  When the truth is you didn’t set things up correctly and or give it time to work.

You have to determine realistic expectations from the start.  Should you start with a focus on more traffic, or should you start with converting traffic to add to cart or should you start with sales?  

And you need to know how Pinterest ads work and what they are capable of before you can realistically and accurately set expectations for yourself or any agency you hire to help you.  What you achieved on Facebook or Google’s ads is not relevant when starting out with Promoted Pins. They are different platforms, they work differently, track differently and each has their own time frames.

Factors to consider when setting expectations:

  1. What is the length of your buying cycle?
  2. How much would you pay for a click to your website?
  3. What is an impression worth to you?
  4. What is the cost of your goods?  $30, $300, $3000 – it makes a difference.
  5. How intense is the competition?

These are just some of the questions we will ask you to help you formulate realistic expectations and develop a strategy to achieve them on Pinterest, with the eventual goal of making more sales and getting a great ROI. If you’re struggling with Pinterest ads contact me for a 20 minute free strategy call. 

Pinterest ads

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