Named Promoted App Pins, Pinterest’s new feature allows advertisers to purchase app-install ads within the site and enables iOS users to download the apps without leaving Pinterest.​

The platform rolled this update out yesterday (28 March), available via its self-serve platform and API partners. In native-ad style, Promoted App Pins will appear on the site’s boards in the style of normal pins – in what it hopes will be minimal disruption to the user’s content browsing. 

The move emphasises the mobile-focused approach Pinterest has taken since – as reported by Adweek – over 80% of its users take to the platform from their smartphones; the group’s head of products, Mike Bidgoli, called Pinterest a “very mobile-first product, and hence, it lends itself well to app installs.”

Playing catch-up

App-install ads aren’t new and Facebook and Instagram have been making them a success within their own walls. Advertisers using mobile app ads on these two platforms saw a significant boost to their downloads with an increase of 196% in the last quarter in 2015 as well as a 155% rise in spend on mobile apps in the same period, according to a report from Kenshoo.

Pinterest is also optimistic: the app pins had been tested in collaboration with approximately 100 brands running mobile campaigns including Glu Mobile, Ibotta and Stash since July last year. Pinterest claimed that 70% of advertisers involved in its testing achieved their goals using Promoted App Pins.

“One cool thing is that it not only worked for the core categories like food, style, beauty,” added Bidgoli, “but it also worked for personal finance, automotive and gaming.”