December 24, 2021 66

How to Make Money with Affiliate Marketing on Pinterest in 2022: $41 254 in 1 Month

You might have heard of Pinterest as a platform where people share DIY, design, and fashion ideas. Though, Pinterest is much more than that. Besides being a social media platform, it is also a search engine. And like with other social and search platforms, you can earn money with Pinterest. By the way, many marketers include Pinterest in their "toolbox". Pinterest allows you to expand your marketing strategy. However, like with any platform, you need to learn specific for the platform features, instruments, and tools to be successful. One more key parameter for any marketer is the audience. All these aspects we’re going to cover today. Off we go.


Pinterest: Platform — Development — Statistics

Pinterest is an image sharing and visual search engine designed specifically to enable discovery and saving information ("ideas") in the form of pinboards. As of August 2020, Pinterest had more than 400 million active monthly users.

If you are unfamiliar with Pinterest, here is the brief review.

Pinterest includes:

  • Pins. Pins are uploaded or linked to blogs/websites images. Pins can be "repinned", saved to other user’s boards.  
  • Boards. Boards are dedicated to specific topic collections of pins. Boards can be divided into sections.

Pinterest users can follow and unfollow each other. The home feed represents a collection of pins from other users and boards followed. Important for affiliate marketers: home feed also includes promoted pins.

In 2015 Pinterest users can search with images instead of words. In 2017 a "visual search" was introduced to help users search for specific elements in images and direct users’ similar content within the Pinterest database (Pinterest lens, Shop the Look, Instant Ideas). In 2018 Pinterest introduced "Product Pins" which replaced "buyable pins". In 2019 Pinterest added "product catalogs and personalized shopping recommendations with the “more from [Brand]" option, showcasing a range of product Pins from the same business." Recently Pinterest launched Shop-the-Look Ads that allow advertisers tagging up to 25 items in an image and rolled out a "Shop" tab for business profiles so that users can shop directly. In 2020 Pinterest launched the "Today" tab for the home feed. "Today" tab shows the most trending pins.

Interesting fact: in 2012, 83% of all Pinterest users were women; in 2016, the part of female users was 60%.  In fact, Pinterest is still considered as a platform appealing mostly to women.


Pinterest Statistics that Might be Useful for Your Marketing Campaigns

Let's take a look at some Pinterest statistics that might be useful for your marketing campaigns:

  • Pinterest reaches 83% of all US women aged 25-54. This category of Pinterest users is called "Deciders" because they are responsible for 80% of family purchases and "control more than 50% of the wealth in the US."
  • 85% of female Pinners (aged 25-54) use Pinterest for planning major life moments (small and big). Pinterest for them is a platform for inspiration, generating ideas, and planning. For comparison, the same parameter for Facebook is 53%, and for Instagram — 44%. Small moments include recipes (67%), workouts (35%), and parties (34%). Big life events consist of vacation planning (1 in 2 Pinners) and home design (43%).
  • 67% of the Deciders use Pinterest for brand-led browsing and ideas. 52% of the Deciders spent at least $500 on beauty products in the past six months. They discover new products on Pinterest.  
  • 40% of US dads use Pinterest to research, plan and shop for fatherhood. 80% of them said that they found new products on Pinterest.
  • In 2018 Pinterest witnessed a 450% increase in fathers searching for DIY projects.
  • 52% of millennials use Pinterest monthly.

  • 28% of marketers use Pinterest. The number is continuously increasing as many businesses and marketers realize the advantages of the platform.
  • 97% of Pinterest searches are unbranded. This means that users intend to open new brands, products, and solutions, far beyond well-known brands.

Pinterest Ad tools

In 2013 Pinterest launched its advertising program in the form of "Promoted Pins". Promoted Pins are shown to users based on individual interests, activity on Pinterest, or visits of advertiser’s websites or applications.

There are two ways to make an ad on Pinterest:

  • Quick and simple. You can make an ad from a Pin using the Pinterest app or via the Pinterest website on desktop.
  • Advanced.  Pinterest Ads Manager helps to create and optimize your campaigns.  

Pinterest Ads help you to get your content and products in front of a broader audience. Pinterest Ads Manager allows creating, editing, and managing Pinterest campaigns.


Pinterest Ads Step-by-Step

  1. Create a new ad. Open Pinterest Ads and click "Ads". Next, go to "Create ad".

  1. Select a campaign goal. Decide on what is the most important for this Pinterest campaign. You can also make a draft of your campaign. Select "Pause campaign": you can create a campaign, review all the details and save it. You can launch the campaign later.

  1. Enter ad group details. You should name the ad group, where your Promoted Pins will be saved. This way you get more control over the budget, targeting, and dates.

  1. Select your targeting. In other words, you select categories of Pinterest users who are the most likely to get interested in your ads. You can choose targeting based on audiences (behavioral insights, existing customers), keywords (ads will be shown to pinners who search for specific topics), interests (your ads will reach users based on the types of boards they’ve created, the Pins they repined, etc.), demographics (gender, age, language, location, etc.), placements (ads can appear in search results, as users browse, or both variants), actalikes, and expanded (when you enter interests and keywords, Pinterest Ads will automatically suggest other possible interests and keywords following the content of your ad). Besides, there is an automated targeting when Pinterest will promote your ad based on details from the Pin. Hence, the ad will be shown to the people potentially interested in your product or a service.

  1. Budget and schedule. As an advertiser, you set the budget and duration for your campaign. Ads can be paid for views, clicks, or engagements. Here you select the start date for your campaign. End dates work better for seasonal campaigns. Next, enter the budget. You choose a lifetime to use the budget evenly over the selected dates; the budget is adjusted based on how much there is left to deliver. You select for what action you want to pay: views, engagement, or clicks.

  1. Pick a Pin to promote. Select Pins that are doing well to reach even more people. Pinterest Analytics might help to see which Pins perform well. Don’t forget to edit the Pin name and check the URL for your Pin.
  2. Review and promote. Review all the details, make sure your ads are ready to go, and click "Launch".  
  3. Set up your billing info. Note that Pinterest accepts credit cards only from specific countries. Check the full list here. Important: if billing info isn’t set up, the details of your Promoted Pin won’t be saved.

  1. Pin review. Naturally, your ads will be reviewed to make sure they comply with Pinterest Ads Policies. Usually, it takes up to 24 hours.
Do you have a Pinterest profile?
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Pinterest Ads Formats

There are 5 Pinterest Ads Formats:

  1. Standard
  2. Video
  3. Shopping
  4. Carousel
  5. Collections


Case study 1: Noom's advertising campaign on Pinterest

"The health and fitness app turned trial users into paid subscribers".

Noom app offers free trials to new customers, but the target is to get loyal subscribers to the paid app. After several advertising campaigns on Pinterest, the team focused on the conversion campaign "designed to convert people from free to paid memberships." Within the framework of the campaign, Noom utilized Pinterest’s conversion optimization tools, which helped to manage the budget and efficiency of the advertising campaign.

As a result, Noom got a 4x increase in conversions. Sam Wheatley, Director of Growth Marketing, noted, "Conversion optimization really focused our ad spend where it did the most good. The new optimization feature has taken our acquisition campaigns to the next level."


Affiliate Marketing on Pinterest: Step-by-Step Guide

To make an affiliate marketing campaign on Pinterest, you need an affiliate offer that you will promote. Where do you get an affiliate offer? There are two variants: directly from the brand and via affiliate networks (some networks require having a blog or a website). You can make money with affiliate marketing on Pinterest without your own blog/website, the same as with any other affiliate campaigns on other platforms.

Still confused and don’t know what to begin with? Join industry-focused forums to get updated information about some affiliate networks, read about other marketers’ experience and case studies, and share your own ideas. Warrior Forum, BlackHatWorld, WickedFire are among the best marketing forums. However, you may find many other useful platforms.

Back in 2015 affiliate links were banned on Pinterest (affiliate links were considered as spam); hence, many marketers got Pinterest as a marketing tool out of their heads. Good news: later the ban was removed.

Choosing a vertical to work with sometimes can be challenging. Yes, the offer might be very attractive, but all seasoned marketers recommend considering your traffic source in the first place. Today we discuss Pinterest as a platform for promoting affiliate offers. Below you can find the most popular verticals on Pinterest:

Category Number of followers

Home Décor

60.5 million
Art 54 million
Travel 52 million
Photography 47.1 million
DIY & Crafts 45 million
Design 44 million
Technology 38 million
Quotes 35 million
Food & Drink 31 million
Humor 29 million
Gardening 27.2 million
Tattoos 27 million
Animals

25 million

Education 24 million
Hair & Beauty 21 million
Health & Fitness 21 million
Architecture 20 million
History 20 million
Celebrities 16.5 million
Kids & Parenting 14 million
Men’s Fashion

11.1 million

Weddings 10.2 million
Geek 6.9 million
Women’s Fashion 5.8 million
Birthdays 4.8 million

Key Steps to Generate Traffic from Pinterest

  • Sign up for a Pinterest business account. Pinterest states that  a person/business that intends to use Pinterest for commercial purposes “should create a business account and agree to business-specific TOS.” Business profiles can be linked with a personal profile; one personal profile can be linked to four business Pinterest profiles.  Moreover, a business account provides you with access to Pinterest Analytics, which is pretty useful when you use the platform for affiliate marketing. One of the Pinterest Analytics benefits is access to the data about your viewers, including gender, age, location, and device.
  • Create keywords-based boards and fill them with pins. You may create your own Pin or use (if available) a pre-made pin from the brand you promote. It is highly recommended to use several pins for the promotion of any affiliate offer to attract different users. When you post a Pin, use your individual affiliate link in the Website section. However, Pinterest’s policy forbids using link shorteners, such as Pretty link or Bit.ly.

You will need a detailed description for your Pin, so use 2 or 3 relevant keywords. You’d better choose one main keyword and several additional. Make sure your principal keyword is present in a Pin title, Pin description, your blog post title, and blog post URL. This way, your Pin is optimized for high ranking; therefore, it is more likely to be shown to Pinterest users who search for your keyword. Now you understand why Pinterest SEO is of utmost importance. Do not forget that Pinterest is a search engine.

Save affiliate pins to the most relevant boards (with keywords in their titles/descriptions). Avoid multi-vertical boards because the Pinterest search engine considers the nature of your Pin based on keywords, images, and boards.  

  • You may go with Rich Pins for your blog/website (optional).
  • Join group boards (within the same vertical). As experience shows, a major part of clicks will come from pinboards. Pinterest boards resemble Facebook groups. You can create your own boards and use already existing (group) boards. Again, keywords-based titles and descriptions are crucial; otherwise, people won’t find your boards and pins.
  • Pins should be unique, catchy, and clear. You need more clicks on your Pin, so you need to make it appealing to Pinterest users. Long and vertical pins work a long sight better than square and horizontal pins. Sizes 735 x 1250 or 600 x 900 do quite well. There is no single rule for the dimensions. The title should be very clear: specify what problem you offer to solve (for example, “How to earn money with affiliate programs on Pinterest”). Pins in warm colors, particularly red and orange, are considered more appealing than pins in blue and green shades.
  • Pin regularly and apply TTO tactics. TTO stands for traffic, trust, and offer. First of all, you generate traffic to your pins and boards. Second, you build trust by keeping off spamming methods. Third, the main pins should contain relevant affiliate links (offers).

You can also create favorite and wishlist boards where you save pins of items you like (marketing resources, clothing items, beauty products, etc.)

To level-up your affiliate marketing campaigns on Pinterest you may create a presale content. Yep, you’ll exert additional efforts, but the result pays off in the long run. One of the tested methods to boost your campaigns is the content in the form of reviews. For example, "Top 20 reviews of …" It will look like: "Top 5 reasons why you should choose *** as your night cream" or "10 advantages of ***". You should be specific with reviews. I mean, do not just list reasons, but back up all listed benefits of a product/service with detailed explanations and facts. Another option for pins is to show how people can benefit from your product. Success stories and images "Before/After" bring excellent results in terms of marketing and promotion.

Give a look at how Nike promotes Women’s Training Nike Dry Tank on Pinterest. I honestly admit the screenshot is from my phone; I really liked the pin (and the tank top) and saved it.

One more example of a successful pin is from Doris Leslie Blau Antique & Vintage Rugs. They bring 7 New Interior Décor Trends That Will Be Huge in 2020 by DLB. I’m sure that most of the design variants will include vintage rugs from DLB. Despite the lack of recommended warm colors (red and orange), the pin is well-designed and looks just awesome. Unobtrusive and stylish marketing.

Screenshots, statistics, and infographics work very well. Actually, the idea is very simple. When you provide readers with valuable content, they trust you. When they trust you, they buy products/services that you recommend. Many marketers report an increase in traffic and conversions by running advertising campaigns on Pinterest.  

Interesting fact: 55% of Pinterest users turn to the platform to discover fashion and style products; 90% of weekly users say that Pinterest helps them to make shopping decisions.


DOs and DON’Ts for affiliate marketing on Pinterest in 2021

DOs: 

  • Pins should stand out, so make them vertical and long.
  • Warm colors are dominant; they attract users and encourage them to click on your pin.
  • The description should be clear and not too wordy.

DON’Ts: 

  • You must make a disclosure that you are an affiliate. Otherwise, you’re breaking rules and might be penalized. The easiest way to disclose that you’re an affiliate is to add #affiliatelink, #ad, or #sponsored hashtags at the end of Pin descriptions.
  • No spamming. You don’t like being spammed, so other people don’t like it too. Introduce your product, show it and tell its advantages instead of a haunting sale.
Let’s reveal secrets. Have you ever used spamming to promote affiliate offers?
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Useful Instruments for Affiliate Marketing on Pinterest

  • Canva. This free tool helps you create professional-quality designs for social media posts, prints, documents, videos, etc.
  • PicMonkey. It is an online photo editor that is capable of taking your images to the wow-worthy level. There is a free trial.
  • Deposit Photos. Pinterest is a visual platform, so you cannot underestimate the power of high-quality images.
  • Crello. Crello offers tons of pre-made templates eye-catching pins. You don’t need to have design skills, just customize the existing templates using multiple instruments and tools.
  • Placeit. One more multi-functional and handy Pinterest image-maker with loads of aesthetically attractive templates.
  • DesignWizard.  Helps you create impressive videos and image designs.
  • TailWind. It is a very useful app for Pinterest scheduling. It automatically pins at the best time for more engagement, reach, and website traffic. Additionally, the app accelerates your Pinterest growth with Power-Ups: you can join TailWind tribes so that you can pin to specific tribes with relevant content. TailWind is an official Pinterest and Instagram Partner, so no worries about the safety of your account.  

Case study 2: Ezra Firestone

Ezra was one of the first marketers to appreciate Pinterest Ads functionality for e-commerce business. As "the whole point of Pinterest is for users to search and make lists (boards) of the things they want… there’s nothing better than that: a large group of people with disposable income telling you exactly what they want by searching for it."

Pinterest Ad platform represents a great combo of "query-based visibility" (ads are shown to users based on users’ searches) and contextual visibility (targeting by demographics). Ezra also noted that he liked a native advertising system on Pinterest, when ads blend in within the platform, so paid ads aren’t very disturbing or annoying.

For the Pinterest ad campaign, Ezra decided not to go with a lead generation. The objective of lead generation campaigns is to make a list of leads. Later these lists are used for e-mail campaigns. However, lead generation campaigns don’t make money. Ok, there are solutions, like sales sequences, but they require extra time, effort, and energy. So, Ezra set his choice on a traditional direct response advertising campaign. He intended "to generate customers right away."

According to official data from Pinterest, Ezra was getting 17 cents clicks, though the marketer noted that "the number of visitors he received from Pinterest ads was double what Pinterest said". Actually, he was getting 9 cent clicks.

Ezra spent $775 for the Pinterest advertising campaign and earned $21 969. Google Analytics was used to track URLs for the promoted pins to track back the number of sales and visits from the Pinterest ad campaign. Ezra commented, "We have not seen this level of high-quality traffic since Google Adwords way back in 2003."

Interestingly, the traffic from Pinterest ads was spending almost 3 times as much time on Ezra’s webpage as his Facebook ads traffic, and it was converting 5 times better.

The most interesting is still coming.  As you see in the case study title, he made $41 254, but analytics shows $21 000.

The screenshot above shows Google organic sales and direct sales. But Ezra states that he "had no direct traffic or Google organic traffic before he turned on this campaign. None. Zero." During the ad campaign, he got 5-10 sales from each source. As he says, "This means people are seeing my ad, remembering it, and then coming back later to search for me and buy from me."

What was the response funnel? Here is Ezra’s secret: "I didn’t send people from Pinterest directly to my website. Instead, I sent people from a promoted pin to an article engaging them in a story about my brand and products. From there, the interested prospects clicked through to my e-commerce store." And here is the funnel:

Yes, Ezra sent people directly to the e-commerce store without a long-form sales page. This is the formula of his success: "This is a straight-up direct response; from an ad right through to a sale no followup sequence in place whatsoever. NO email opt-ins, retargeting ads, nothing. It’s just a simple article engagement page to an eCommerce store."

In fact, he considered the possibility to turn on retargeting to pick up an extra 30% in sales (as his usual rates in case of using retargeting ads along with sales funnels). Ezra also mentioned that this funnel wasn’t only for Pinterest ads. He used it on Facebook and Google too. Yet, it was the best funnel he’d ever created for direct response advertising.  


Conclusion

Pinterest is a platform for everyone. You can make money with affiliate marketing on Pinterest both with and without a website/blog. Multiple Pinterest possibilities seasoned with analytics and creativity provide you with multiple opportunities to top up your bank account.

An interesting fact: the main female audience on Pinterest typically makes over $75 000 a year, and 10% of Pinterest users make over $125 000 a year. Now you see the purchasing power of the Pinterest audience and don’t want to slip the chance to drive traffic to affiliate offers via Pinterest and earn your affiliate commission. The combo Pinterest + Affiliate marketing can be very lucrative.

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