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Pinterest offers new ad solutions

News, 20 May 2015

SAN FRANCISCO: Cinematic Pins and buying inventory on a cost-per-engagement basis are among the new options being offered to advertisers on Pinterest, the fast-growing visual sharing network.

Tim Kendall, Pinterest's general manager of monetization, described the new ad solution set – which also includes targeting features and inventory buying on a cost-per-action basis – as "comprehensive".

"These solutions map to any marketing objective," he declared.

The Cinematic Pin is essentially an animated version of the existing Promoted Pin which only moves when the user is scrolling or has tapped on it. Several launch partners have already been signed up, including Banana Republic, Gap, L'Oreal, Nestle and Target.

"We have tested this extensively with users," Kendall told TechCrunch. "What we heard was, 'auto-play ads are interruptive, and this is so much better because it keeps me in control'."

"We didn't even bother testing auto-play [based on the response from our users with this product]," he added.

At the same time a new pricing model will allow marketers to only pay for Promoted Pins based on engagement, such as re-pins, clicks and close-up views of Promoted Pins.

They will also be able to pay for Promoted Pins only if users act on them, by downloading an app for example.

While all these options will be made available on a self-service basis, Pinterest is developing its in-house creative ads team to build Promoted Pins as well as providing insight and analytics for brands.

This all marks a significant step forward from the start of the year when Nate Elliott, principal analyst at market research firm Forrester, thought the platform had only limited application as a marketing tool, although he also suggested the data it held had "the potential to drive more sales than Facebook's data".

That's because they are posting content about things they may be interested in purchasing, whereas on other sites users tend to post about what they have already purchased.

"Our users use Pinterest to plan their future," stated Kendall. "We get access to a unique set of information that other services don't have."

Data sourced from TechCrunch, Ad Exchanger, Wall Street Journal; additional content by Warc staff