Pinterest Advertising Guide: What To Know Before You Launch

6 min readDec 9, 2020

So, you’ve decided that paid Pinterest ads are worth the spend for your business — what now?

Well, there are a couple of things you’ll have to consider and prep before your campaign draft transforms into a live Pinterest ad. Here’s our guide for mindfully getting through the pre-campaign launch process (you’ll thank us later!).

Get Your Pinterest Ad Account Ready To Roll

You won’t be getting far without creating an Ad Account first. Assuming you already have a Business Pinterest account (if you don’t, you’ll have to create a brand new one here!), head over to your Business Hub. You should see a drop-down menu titled “Ads,” with everything you’ll need to run your paid campaigns.

Make sure you have your billing information handy to fill out the “Billing” section of that menu. To view or adjust your account settings at any time, go to your Ads page, click the menu item at the top of the page listed as “ Analytics”, you’ll be able to filter through all of that information, and even filter through your top pins based on the different criteria available.

Get Your Bearings In Pinterest’s Native Analytics Platform

Over the past couple of years, Pinterest has been expanding their insight sharing abilities. Now, they have their own native hub for organic and paid content.

When it comes to engaging with a post on Pinterest, users can take several different actions: they can save the pin, follow the external link, review the pin close-up, leave a comment, etc. On the Analytics page, you’ll be able to filter through all of that information, and even filter through your top pins based on the different criteria available.

If you’ve already been posting organic content to Pinterest, make sure you take a look at your progress before launching any new paid campaigns. It’ll help you set expectations for your paid efforts, so you can gauge how effective your spending actually is. We recommend toggling through your analytics, setting data benchmarks for the key performance indicators of your choice.

Get To Know Your Keywords

Pinterest functions like a visual search engine-but like any search engine, you need to utilize the written word to find the images you’re looking for.

Luckily, Pinterest made a keyword search tool part of their ad creation platform, where you can easily search for keywords and see how many posts currently exist under those criteria.

However, even before you get to the ad creation process, we recommend doing some digging using Pinterest’s search feature first. That way, you can actually see the type of posts you’re up against and use the recommended text that appears to further flesh out your list of keywords.

Once you’ve gathered your handy list of search terms, you can not only plug these into the keyword section during the ad creation process-you can also use these to help write keyword-focused copy for your organic and paid content alike!

Get Your Visuals On Point For The Visual Search Engine

Like we mentioned before, Pinterest is all about the visuals-and text on these visuals is actually more than welcome.

Something you may have noticed about Pinterest ads: many of them use graphics with clear, vibrant, easy-to-read, and hard-to-miss text. And sources say that this might be the best formula for creating ads that truly get users’ attention. Here’s some inspiration you might recognize from the Altos Pinterest:

Here’s a short list of attributes to consider when creating graphics that are engaging and informative all at once, making them perfect for an application like Pinterest.

Simple yet compelling headline

Ditch the click-baity copy and focus on providing a brief, accurate preview of the content users can expect when clicking on your ad. We find that the best headlines tend to put into plain English what value the ad will provide the target audience. Something along the lines of “10 Ideas For Effective Pinterest Graphics,” or “How To Create Click-Worthy Pinterest Visuals.”

Clear, vibrant background image

Make sure that the image you choose doesn’t clash with any overlaid text. Keep in mind that your image text will need to be easily read on both the desktop and mobile versions of the platform.

Your brand name or logo

Some may argue that this will set the ad apart from organic content, but we believe that a discreet touch of branding isn’t distracting and could actually do wonders for brand recognition.

Call To Action

Again, focus on the value that your ad is offering visitors. Will they get valuable advice? A free downloadable template? A helpful tutorial? An extra nudge never hurt anyone. If you have the space for it (be careful not to crowd your visuals with too many different elements to look at), consider adding a brief CTA that hints at these valuable side effects.

One last word of visual advice: don’t be afraid of a little trial and error. Test out which graphic formats work best for you by distributing your ad budget between different iterations of the same pin in a single ad set. Once the results roll in, you’ll be able to see which pin pulled in more impressions, engagements, close-ups, etc. It’s just a matter of finding which look really clicks-or, more importantly, earns clicks.

Explore Your Next Steps With Altos Social

There are a ton of different moving parts that, together, make up a successful paid social media campaign. And because most of us aren’t made of money, it’s in your best interest to do as much preparation as you can before throwing your advertising dollars at an unprepared, under-researched ad set (which is pretty much just like throwing those dollars out the proverbial window).

That’s why we believe the prep work we described above is just as important as the actual campaign set-up process. But if you’re curious about the final hurdle before getting your paid Pinterest campaign launched, you’re invited to become an Altos Social Maximizer and gain access to our exclusive library of social media resources. In it, you’ll find a step-by-step walkthrough for transforming your Pinterest campaign from just an idea into a published ad driving traffic to your website.

Click here for more information about our Social Media Maximizer -and happy pinning!

Written by Megan O’Keefe | Content & Social Media Specialist at Altos




We are a digital marketing agency specializing in web design and development, eCommerce, search, and social media marketing.