Pinterest isn’t always the first social media platform that comes to mind for advertising, but it’s a worthy addition to your social media marketing strategy. 

Is Pinterest Advertising Right For Your Business? 

Using every social media platform and trying to excel at all of them isn’t the best digital marketing strategy. How do you know if Pinterest should be part of yours? The industries that succeed the most on Pinterest include

  • Fashion
  • Health and beauty products
  • Home decor
  • Food and beverage

On other social networks, brands are seen as interrupting the experience. On Pinterest, people use it to discover new products, making it the most natural fit for brands. Keep in mind that the majority of Pinterest’s 444 million monthly active users are women ages 25-44. If that’s your target audience, advertising on Pinterest is a no-brainer. 

A stylish woman holding shopping bags

Benefits of Pinterest Advertising

Advertising on Pinterest also gets you more value for your ad spend than other social networks. 

  • 2.3x more efficient cost per conversion than ads on other social media platforms
  • 2x higher return on ad spend for retail brands, compared to other social media platforms

Pinterest users are looking to shop anyway and the ads aren’t complicated. That means your ad spend works harder with them. 

Types of Pinterest Ads

Like other social media platforms, Pinterest ads come in many formats for different purposes, placements, and visuals. 


This is the simplest Pinterest ad format: a single image that leads to a link. Here are a few tips to make a good one: 

  • Use a vertical image
  • Make your brand the focal point
  • Include your logo
  • Add text overlay
  • Optimize your caption
  • Check the links

A single image Pinterest ad from West Elm featuring a series of pottery dishes

Standard Ad Specs: 

  • Format: PNG or .JPEG
  • Maximum File Size: 20 MB
  • Aspect ratio: 2:3 or 1000 x 5000 pixels
  • Title: Up to 100 characters
  • Description: Up to 500 characters


Video ads stop scrolling pinners and get them to look at your ad a little longer. This is how to make the most of them: 

  • Hook them in the first few seconds
  • Choose the right length
  • Pick a strong cover image
  • Optimize your caption

A Pinterest video ad from Food 52

Standard Width Video Ad Specs

  • Format: .MP4, .MOV or .M4V
  • Encoding: H.264 or H.265 
  • Maximum File Size: 2GB
  • Aspect ratio: 1:1 (square), 2:3 or 9:16 (vertical)
  • Video Length: Minimum 4 seconds, maximum 15 minutes.
  • Title: Up to 100 characters 
  • Description: Up to 500 characters

Max-Width Video Ad Specs (Mobile Only)

  • Same as above, except aspect ratio must be either 1:1 or 16:9.
  • Shown to mobile users only.


Shopping ads use the same format as standard ads, but the difference is that they lead directly to a link to purchase the product. 

A shopping ad for a Fi smart collar


Carousel pins include multiple images. Users can swipe through them to see them all. 

A Carousel Pin from Joybird furniture

Carousel Ad Specs

  • Format: .JPG or .PNG
  • Aspect ratio: 1:1 or 2:3
  • Maximum File Size: 32MB per image
  • Quantity: 2-5 images per carousel ad
  • Title: Up to 100 characters 
  • Description: Up to 500 characters


Collection pins have one main image and three smaller images.

A collection ad for The Citizenry's Colombia Collection. The image features two handbags of different sizes

Collection Ad Specs

  • Option 1: Hero/featured image: .JPG or .PNG, 10mb or less with an aspect ratio of either 1:1 or 2:3
  • Option 2: Hero/featured video: .MP4, .M4V or .MOV H.264 or H.265 format. 2GB maximum. At least 4 seconds long, 15 minutes maximum. Recommended aspect ratios: 1:1 or 2:3.
  • Secondary image assets: .JPG or .PNG, 10mb or less. Minimum of 3 images and maximum of 24. Recommended aspect ratio of 1:1, although can use 2:3 but they will show as 1:1.
  • Copy length: Up to 100 characters for title and up to 500 for description. Description only shows in organic collection Pins, not ads.

Idea Pins

Idea pins are multi-page pins that are similar in format to stories on other social media platforms. However, the difference is they don’t go away.

  • Video first
  • Make original content
  • Show some personality
  • Fill out the details page
  • Aim for crisp, clear quality

An Idea Pin from Cause We Can Events, a Nashville-based event and wedding planner

Idea Pin Specs

  • Aspect ratio: 9:16 (minimum size 1080×1920)
  • Format: Video (H.264 or H.265, .MP4, .MOV or .M4V) or image (.BMP, .JPG, .PNG, .TIFF, .WEBP). Maximum 20MB per image or 100MB per video.
  • Length: 3-60 seconds per video clip, max 20 clips per Idea Pin
  • Copy: Maximum 100 characters for the title and 250 characters per slide in a text box.
  • Safe zone: To ensure text and other elements are viewable across all devices, keep important content this far away from the borders of your 1080×1920 image or video:
  • Top: 270 px

How to Create your Pinterest Ad Campaign

Here’s the step by step guide to creating a pinterest ad campaign: 

Create a new ad campaign from Pinterest Ads Manager

The first step is to create a campaign from Pinterest Ads Manager. 

Set your campaign goal

Pinterest’s Ads Manager has five campaign objective options: 

The Pinterest Campaign Objective page

Brand Awareness

This is the first step of the conversion funnel: get your name out there and build awareness of your products. 

Recommended ad types: standard ads, shopping ads

Video Views

The only goal for video view campaigns is to get as many eyes on a video as possible. These could be product promotions or general videos about your brand story. 

Recommended ad type: video pins

A background composed of "play" icons


Consideration campaigns are all about earning those sweet clicks. To do that, the idea is to encourage people who are already aware of your brand to take a closer look. 

Recommended ad types: collection ads, carousel ads

A big cursor next to a button that reads "click me now"


Conversions campaigns are all about taking that final action. This could be a purchase, a subscription, an appointment, or whatever makes someone become a customer of your business. 

Recommended ad types: shopping ads, collection ads, idea pins

A background with arrows

Catalog Sales

Catalog sales campaigns are a subset of conversion campaigns specific to ecommerce businesses. The goal is product sales. 

Recommended ad types: shopping ads, collection ads

A hand holding a fan of 100 dollar bills

Enter ad group details

Once you’ve selected your campaign type, it’s time to create your ad groups. Ad groups allow you to run different ad types related to the same goal side by side. 

Select your targeting

Like most other social media advertising, Pinterest lets you target ads to your audience based on the following characteristics. 

  • Automated targeting
  • Demographics
  • Interests
  • Keywords
  • Customer lists
  • Actalikes
  • Pinterest Dynamic Creative

The Pinterest targeting details page

Pick a budget and schedule

Pinterest ad spending is on a bid system. You’ll notice that they cost less money than other social media ads. 

  • Building brand awareness: $2.00-5.00 for 1000 impressions
  • Boosting engagement: $0.10 – $1.50 per engagement
  • Driving web traffic: $0.10 – $1.50 per engagement

The Pinterest budget and schedule page


Select a Pin to promote

This is when you create your ads including the image, destination link, caption, and more! 

Pinterest Advertising Best Practices

Here are a few miscellaneous tips to make your Pinterest ads the best they can be. 

Make your brand the focus

The product or service that you’re promoting should be the focal point of each pin. 

Include your logo

Tasteful placement of your logo is essential for brand awareness. Place it so it’s there and noticeable, but doesn’t hit viewers over the head. 

Add text overlays with calls to action

A text overlay helps your pin stand out on users’ home feeds. 

Optimize your images and copy

Use the recommended aspect ratios so images show up right in the feed. Compress images so they load quickly, even on mobile devices. 

Your caption should add context to the image. Using relevant search terms and hashtags in the caption will give your promoted pins an SEO boost. 

Stay on top of trends

An important part of any social media strategy is paying attention to trends in your niche and piggybacking on them to get more eyes on your content. 

Spend on what works

At the beginning of your Pinterest advertising endeavor, try different ad types and targeting tactics. Then, track the Pinterest Analytics and metrics on the Ads Manager and continue using the ad types that work best for you.

From building a website to building a digital marketing strategy, Sav wants your business to succeed online. Start building today to find out how. 


Luca Harsh

Luca Harsh

Luca Harsh is an in-house content writer for Sav. They live in Chicago with their cat, Polly. Yes, Harsh is their real last name.