Pinterest Gets Serious About Advertising

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Pinterest is known for its effectiveness for driving high-converting traffic, and particularly for retailers. A study by MillwardBrown revealed that 96% of active Pinterest users have used Pinterest to research and gather product information, 93% have used Pinterest to plan for purchases, and 87% have purchased something because of Pinterest.

Today’s Pinterest announcement of their first wave of ads API partners is the third of a three-part series of announcements related to Pinterest’s API program, the Marketing Developer Partner (MDP) program.

The first announcement (4/27) was focused on the content publishing partners and only mentioned that the advertising API was being developed and that there were some “unnamed” partners testing the ads API in beta. The second announcement (5/18) was related to a number of new ad products Pinterest was making available, some exclusively through the ads API – but the ads API partners remained “unnamed”. Today named the first wave of ads API partners: Adaptly, 4C, Ampush, Brand Networks, HYFN, Kinetic Social, SocialCode, SocialFlow.

Adaptly for one, has integrated Pinterest advertising into its technology which will offer its clients the ability to plan, deploy, optimize, and report on paid media campaigns across Pinterest, making Adaptly’s platform the only technology today for media buying across Pinterest, Facebook, Twitter, and Kik. Marketers can reach new audiences beyond their existing Pinterest followers by promoting pins on their Pinterest board through paid media. These advertisements are called “Promoted Pins.”

Through Adaptly’s technology, marketers can manage every aspect of a Promoted Pin campaign. The Adaptly platform offers a number of key advantages which include the ability to create and edit multiple pins and campaigns in bulk; the ability to discover, create and optimize a large number of keyword terms; and the ability to organize and report on performance information in flexible and customized ways.

Adaptly was part of a limited beta of the Pinterest ads API for several months prior to today’s announcement. As part of the beta, Adaptly developed and tested its Pinterest advertising features in advance of making it generally available. Early users of Adaptly’s Pinterest solution include brands like King’s Hawaiian, Framebridge, and WedPics, as well as agencies like The Richards Group.

I asked Adaptly President Sean O’Neal a number of follow up questions:

G: Pinterest has made several announcements over the past couple months, including the release of new marketing solutions and last week’s ads API partners. What does this all add up to?

O’Neal: Pinterest has positioned itself as a serious advertising player. They have made a number of smart moves over the past several months, introducing key ad products to round out their offering beyond the existing CPM and CPC solutions. With the addition of cost-per-engagement, mobile app installs, and the commerce-enabled pin, Pinterest offers most of the primary media bid types. They now have a full suite of ad products which can attract marketers of every size and with any objective – from upper funnel brand advertisers, to lower-funnel direct response marketers who are focused on driving online conversions.

G: Does Pinterest steal ad dollars from Facebook and Twitter?

O’Neal: We don’t think Pinterest necessarily steals budgets from players like Facebook and Twitter. It’s a totally unique marketing solution which may actually capture budgets from search engines and other “intent” channels, and has the potential to further diminish the role of magazines and catalogs. Total investment in digital continues to grow, and within that the investment in autonomous marketing platforms like Pinterest is also forecasted to increase. Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest and Instagram should not cannibalize each other – this sector as a whole will continue to expand.

G: Pinterest seems like a great place for retailers, but can it work for other advertising categories?

O’Neal: Although Pinterest is naturally a powerful platform for retailers, it is really a place for any brand who wants to get in front of consumers during their journey of discovery. Pinterest is place to explore anything – where to eat, what to drive, where to go, what to wear. There are Pinterest advertisers in virtually every vertical.

The original article can be found in SocialMediaToday.