MENGUIN PART 2: PINTEREST
Prior to working with Social Fulcrum, Menguin had experimented with Pinterest ads with moderate success. However, they encountered the common challenge with paid media channels: they couldn’t cost effectively increase their spend. Menguin needed the platform expertise offered by Social Fulcrum’s digital experts to help them effectively leverage what they believed could be a very successful advertising channel for them.
THE SOLUTION AND RESULTS
With over 100 million users that are 2x more likely to buy than the average internet user, we agreed that Pinterest was a source of untapped potential for Menguin’s customer acquisition strategy. Pinterest is an extremely powerful advertising platform because it relies on search, however, unlike Google, users are rarely search exactly what they’re looking for. Pinterest users create boards around interests and hobbies–using it as a testing ground for future decision- making. The ability to target users who are in the market for your product, but not specifically looking for it (a mindset we refer to as “parallel intent”) makes Pinterest especially interesting for Menguin, as brides searching for wedding planning ideas is a common use case. With proper targeting and optimization, Menguin can use Pinterest to reach users exhibiting intent to purchase.
To begin, we generated an array of audiences based on keywords related to weddings and began the process of strategic audience, creative, and message testing. Within the first two weeks of testing we managed to reduce the cost per lead by 79% and discovered that “aging” contributed approximately 17% to this reduction. The phenomenon of aging is unique to Pinterest and serves the interest of advertisers as it’s the process in which Promoted Pins garner delayed conversions or checkouts, lowering your cost per acquisition over time without spending additional budget. For example, say a bride is looking for tux ideas on Pinterest and sees an ad for Menguin, she’s interested, but not quite ready to think about outfitting groomsman at the time so she pins it to her “Wedding Planning” board. Four weeks later she returns, clicks the ad, and creates a Meguin account. Her conversion of account creation is attributed to the date the ad initially ran even though it happened a full four weeks after her initial action on pinning the ad. Aging is critical for advertisers to understand as it means current data is not indicative of future performance and can easily lead to incorrect optimization. Our analysis showed that optimizing for the aging effect would continue to drop to cost per lead overtime. As you can see the the graph below, our predictive analytics proved to be correct.
In order to achieve this success, we took our learnings from the initial rounds of testing and began to scale our efforts–turning our primary focus to optimizing bid and budget between audiences. We discovered the “Tux” and “Wedding Fitness” audiences to be the initial top performers and focused spend there while continuing to test additional audiences. We took a closer look at creative within the “Tux” audience, and found that one pin in particular performed extremely well and began to receive approximately 40% of the daily budget (within the audience) while maintaining an efficient cost per lead. To capitalize on the success of this image while avoiding creative exhaustion, we created multiple variants of the text overlay–as we’ve found this strategy to be an efficient way to lower the $/lead within an audience.
- CTR — increased from 0.11% to 0.14% — because of Pinterest’s broad match algorithm (search terms are matched to broader categories, rather than to the term itself) and the popularity of the wedding category on the platform, CTR always stayed around the 0.11% to 0.14% range, as our terms matched to broader categories we were trying to avoid (i.e. the low intent audiences, wedding venues, wedding dress, etc.). This made bid optimization very tricky (and made it that much more difficult to drive down CPC!) and thus making budget allocations all the more important.
- Decreased cost per Create Account by 88% over 5 months.
After collecting a significant amount of data we were able to conduct down funnel analysis across platforms to determine which platform was most efficient at generating leads that converted to paying customers. As you’ll see in the graph below, Facebook leads converted at a higher rate at the top of the funnel, but the conversion rate decreased as leads move further down the funnel. On the other hand, Pinterest users were less likely to convert at the top of funnel, but garnered a higher rate of lower funnel conversions (ie. account creation and checkouts) than Facebook. We believe that Pinterest’s impressive down funnel results are dues to that fact that Pinterest is saving platform and results improve over time. Additionally, Pinterest’s pixel last for 60 days versus Facebook’s pixel which only measures conversions up to 28 days post click/view.