Pinterest’s Promoted Ads Power The Re-Pin

Bob Gilbreath, AhalogyPinterest has finally launched the beta version of the Promoted Pins ad product it first promised last September. As flashy as a Pinterest-related ad unit might seem, however, brands still need results.

As if on cue, social media marketing company Ahalogy, working with AcuPOLL Precision Research, conducted a study showing that Pinterest users tend to be less reachable through traditional media outlets. They watch up to three fewer hours of television than non-Pinterest users, and 43% of them use Pinterest in lieu of reading magazines. Another 39% use Pinterest instead of traditional search engines like Google.

Because of this high level of engagement, Promoted Pins have a decent opportunity to go viral – a focus for Ahalogy, said CEO Bob Gilbreath. The vendor uses a scheduling algorithm that decides when to place the pins and monitors results.

“For our clients where we are doing earned optimization, we work to get a high re-pin rate,” he said. “If we get to that viral re-pin rate, an escalating number of people (way beyond follower count) could see that pin in the following days.”

Re-pin activity, Gilbreath said, will determine the brand “winners and losers.”

“The winners will be the ones that have content that’s so great that it earns two or three times the additional traffic from re-pins,” he said.

Another benefit for brands whose Promoted Pins get re-pinned is that, according to a Pinterest spokesperson, those redistributed posts won’t appear as promotional messages. “It just becomes an earned pin,” the spokesperson said.

Pinterest, for its part, is working with a small group of advertisers like and Kraft to run the ad units on its desktop and mobile sites. The social network expects some initial campaigns to run for at least six months and will attempt to optimize Promoted Pins to generate the earned activity that Gilbreath mentioned.

The spokesperson said Pinterest is keeping things simple by offering Promoted Pins on a CPM basis at first, and would not specify pricing.

It’s easy to see why the re-pin activity is so valuable. Certainly, generating two to three times the impressions is good in and of itself, but Pinterest users also use the platform to influence their buying decisions. Fifty-two percent of daily Pinterest users activate the app in-store, for instance.

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