We’ve been in Pinterest from almost the beginning.  The platform seemed like a very cool way of presenting information that google hasn’t figured out yet.  And honestly, I’m surprised Google hasn’t tried to buy them yet.  With that said, we were asked a great question today about how we would use the site for Paid Ads — in particular, with regards to Automotive.

Pinterest is a Top 12 Digital Property

When we consider the different ad platforms, we do a periodic check to see who’s dominating the web.  At this point, there isn’t a great tool for mobile, but for desktop, we like to use Similarweb and you can see that Pinterest has over a billion visits a month; so we would take it seriously as an advertiser.  Here are some other metrics to consider:

  • average visit duration: 4 minutes and 48 seconds
  • pages per visit: 4.77
  • bounce rate: 47.93%

Pinterest by Country

For American advertisers, you can trust that Pinterest is higher than other top sites like Google.com ( US), YouTube (20.60% US), or Twitter (27.45%).  It is also sometimes fascinating to see what the secondary countries are like in Pinterest’s sake, it’s Brazil, India, China and Turkey.  For Google.com, it’s Brazil (again as a #2), the UK, India & Canada.  For YouTube, it’s Russia, then Brazil, the UK and Japan. And for Twitter, it’s Japan (a very high 2nd btw at 13%+), UK, Brazil and Canada.

Pinterest Audience Interest

You can potentially gauge the type of visitors to the site via their audience interests and the  affinities,  I’d argue:

And those affinities include:

Pinterest Affinities

  • games
  • design
  • shopping
  • reference
  • video
  • software
  • sign
  • music
  • english
  • business
  • news community
  • international news

among the usual suspects.

Audience Insights on Pinterest

Historically, the population on Pinterest has been women.  You can see it with the gender distribution for the past 30 days (we’re assuming):

women vs men on pinterest

And correspondingly, the categories that seem to resonate with the audience on Pinterest are:

Pinterest’s Top Categories and Interests

Top 10 Categories on Pinterest

  1. home decor 68%
  2. diy (do it yourself) & crafts 56%
  3. art 55%
  4. entertainment 54%
  5. food & drinks 54%
  6. education 53%
  7. beauty 48%
  8. women’s fashion 45%
  9. design 39%
  10. sport 37%

Pinterest Age Distribution

The largest audience is definitely younger on Pinterest.  And the older people are, the less likely they are using the platform.

Top DMAs (Designated Market Areas) on Pinterest

Top Platforms Pinterest Users are On

Users are primarily iPhone owners.

Automotive Data on Pinterest

“Vehicles” is the 21st most popular category on Pinterest

w/ 15% of the platform’s audience interested in cars and automotive.

Top Vehicle sub-interests on Pinterest

As listed, they are:

  1. cars
  2. motorcycles and scooter
  3. aircraft (I’d argue is NOT automotive)
  4. exotic cars
  5. truck
  6. campers and rv
  7. watercraft (again NOT auto)
  8. suv
  9. vintage cars
  10. motorcycle
  11. luxury cars
  12. boats (not auto)
  13. auto services & repair
  14. classic cars
  15. sports cars
  16. car and motorcycle design
  17. concept cars
  18. super cars
  19. vans
  20. muscle cars
  21. convertible
  22. off road truck
  23. yacht (again not auto)
  24. scooter
  25. bus
  26. travel trailer
  27. station wagon
  28. tow truck
  29. rv
  30. 4×4 truck
  31. city vehicles
  32. bond cars
  33. all-terrain vehicles
  34. car accessories
  35. jet ski
  36. coupe
  37. new cars
  38. construction vehicles
  39. used cars
  40. hydraulic cars
  41. sedan

Auto Case Studies on Pinterest

So, it appears that Pinterest doesn’t like to always keep the data on their site or on their blogs, but you can see from older posts that Pinterest has seen OEMs and others leverage it for its power.  Since posts and sites might be ephemeral, let me just place these details here and give credit to the source.

  • Pinterest users are 28% more likely to buy new cars within 90 days of release.

  • More than 6 million people absorb auto-related content via Pinterest.

  • Pinterest users are 31% more likely than non-Pinterest users to purchase a new SUV after a new release, and 13% more likely to purchase a new truck model after a new release.

  • 57% of Pinterest users who pin about auto-related topics every week use the social site to find auto-related products when searching for a new car purchase.

  • 62% of Pinners made vehicle purchases based on the content they viewed from car brands on Pinterest.

And the content from the 2nd bullet point comes from adweek.

Pinterest Users Are 28% More Likely to Buy New Cars Within 90 Days of Their Release

Toyota’s promoted video campaign for its Avalon hit a 53% average view-through rate

You have to get through the paywall at adweek to get the data and the rest of the story.  And unfortunately, the 1st and 3rd sources were taken down from earlier.  I do remember seeing them and now wish I would have copied and pasted them here.  The 2nd, 4th and 5th are all behind the paywall.

Another story from mdg advertising highlights some great data titled “Why Pinterest Is Perfect for Reaching Auto Consumers”:

Pinterest has established itself as a powerful marketing channel for a wide range of verticals, from home goods to hospitality, but many automotive brands remain reluctant to engage fully on the social network.

This hesitancy stems from the belief that the Pinterest audience is less likely to be interested in the automotive category.

In truth, people who use Pinterest are more likely to be curious, early-adopter auto consumers. According to an Oracle Data Cloud analysis based on new vehicle registration data, Pinterest users are 28% more likely than non-Pinterest users to buy a new vehicle within the first 90 days, 31% more likely to buy a new SUV model after a new release, and 13% more likely to buy a new truck model after a new release.

In addition to being engaged, the Pinterest automotive audience is large. According to ComScore data, the social network now reaches half of all adults in the United States who plan to buy a car in the next six months.

Why is there such a huge disconnect between the perception of Pinterest users and the reality when it comes to the auto category?

Largely, it’s rooted in the idea that Pinterest is a female-dominated platform and that men are a more important target demographic for vehicle marketing.

The first part of this assumption is correct: some 80% of Pinterest users are women. However, the second part—that women are not a key audience for automotive marketing—is flawed and outdated.

A recent analysis showed that there are 1.4 million more women than men licensed to drive in the United States, 62% of new cars in the US are purchased by women, and women were responsible for buying 7.7 million new vehicles last year.

According to Ashley Ritter, a social media manager here at MDG Advertising who works on the automotive vertical, “In the past, it was unheard of to connect women with car buying, but the times have changed and women are taking the lead in the early research phase, as well as the final decision-making process.”

Given that women are increasingly driving the purchase of vehicles, and that Pinterest reaches 83% of women ages 25–54 in the United States, the social network’s audience is immensely valuable to auto brands.

Moreover, in addition to being a key channel for targeting women, Pinterest is also effective in reaching wealthier and younger auto consumers. High-income and well-educated audiences are twice as likely to use the platform and it reaches more than half (54%) of all Millennials.

What’s important for auto brands to understand is that Pinterest isn’t just valuable because of its demographics. The nature of the platform—visual with easy-to-share Pins and Boards—makes it perfectly suited for learning about auto brands and models.

As social media manager Ashley Ritter says, “With Pinterest’s visual-centric approach, there are countless opportunities to showcase a new vehicle’s features and focal points in a way that creates a seamless flow in a user’s feed.”

Automotive audiences are well aware of this usefulness when it comes to discovering, researching, and even deciding on vehicles—more than 7 million people already engage with auto-related content on Pinterest and 62% of auto Pinners say they’ve made a purchase based on seeing auto content.

Not surprisingly, savvy automotive brands are picking up on this behavior and utilizing Pinterest more and more. A good example is Toyota, which recently used the platform to showcase its 2019 Toyota Avalon to Gen X and Millennial audiences.

The carmaker’s multi-faceted campaign included both organic and paid elements and incorporated a wide variety of short-form videos and images to highlight different features of the new vehicle. There were Pins showing the Avalon racing a powerboat to demonstrate its Sport+ mode, doors being opened using an Apple Watch to showcase its remote-access capabilities, and audio of the gas being hit to flaunt its engine-sound enhancement option.

Toyota USA2019 Toyota AvalonFollow On

The 2019 Avalon Pinterest campaign was highly effective: it garnered millions of impressions and had a 53% average video view-through rate.

What’s important to note is that this success did not come from simply transferring an existing social campaign to Pinterest. Toyota developed the campaign exclusively for the network, utilizing its platform-specific tools, such as Promoted Pins, and following its best practices, such as adding a text overlay to each Pin.

We’ve seen the same when working with clients—Pinterest can be an incredibly powerful marketing tool for brands, but tapping into its full potential requires tailored tactics. If you want to connect with Pinterest users, you must take into account the platform’s many nuances, ranging from how brand accounts function, to the ways in which people share content.

Ultimately, Pinterest has a highly valuable user base for automotive brands and can be a key marketing channel. However, the platform has a unique audience with unique behaviors, so engaging on it effectively requires taking unique approaches.

Success stories in other verticals are here on Pinterest.

The rest of the top categories on Pinterest (after sport):

  • (11th) travel 36%
  • (12th) gardening 34%
  • (13th) health 32%
  • (14th) wedding 30%
  • (15th) event planning 28%
  • (16th) electronics 27%
  • (17th) parenting 25%
  • (18th) animals 20%
  • (19th) quotes 19%
  • (20th) architecture 18%
  • (21st) vehicles (aka automotive + boats + motorcycles + aircraft) 15%
  • (22nd) men’s fashion 11%
  • (23rd) finance 4%
  • (24th) children’s fashion 3%
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