How to Post Videos on Pinterest

Haley Durkee
February 6, 2020
Last Updated On
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Video killed the radio star, but could its BFF actually be social media? Content in motion is quickly gaining steam as a top-tier medium for digital advertising. Pinterest may have been late to the party, but the addition of native video for business profiles has propelled the channel to the forefront of marketers’ minds. Get up to speed on how to post videos on Pinterest to optimize for reach and conversions on the visual channel.

Why Choose Video?

The first question you need to ask is whether or not your product or service would look good in action. For most brands, the answer is a resounding yes. Motion makes it easy for consumers to imagine a product in real life—and the more they can picture it, the more inclined pinners are to make a purchase. Alternatively, for publishers and media companies, a quick video is an effective way to tease your content and incentivize that coveted click. The effectiveness of video is even higher on a channel like Pinterest because the majority of content in the main feed is static. Movement draws the eye toward it like Beyoncé on a red carpet, and who doesn’t want to be Beyoncé?

The Basics

Before you post a new video, make sure you have a Pinterest Business Account set up. While anyone can pin from other sources, only verified businesses can add native video content into the feed. All you have to do is find the big plus sign on the homepage to create a pin. Next, upload your video and use the slider to find a cover photo. Pop in a snappy title and description, then select “choose a board” to organize it into whatever category you’d like. Finally, enter a link for pinners to go to when they click on your vid. Hit publish and voila—it’s live.

Tech Specs and Best Practices

Once your creative vision is realized, focus on the technical specs of the upload. Lo-fi video is great but only works as a style when it’s done intentionally. The wrong file type, size, or codec can take a post from lo-fi to low impact. It’s like trying on clothes that look great in the changeroom but not at home. The clothes themselves could be fantastic, but the change in lighting makes you see them differently. Think of your video formatting for Pinterest in the same way—if you want content to appear in the feed as envisioned, you need to show it in its best proverbial light. That means your specs should be a combination of the following:

File Type: .mp4 | .mov | .m4v

Encoding: H.264 | H.265

Max File Size: 2GB

Video Length: 4 Seconds - 15 Minutes

Recommended Aspect Ratio: 1:1 (Square) | 2:3 (Vertical) | 9:16 (Vertical)

Copy also has an impact on video performance. Because Pinterest operates primarily as a search engine, adding a couple of keywords into your title and description helps pinners find it organically. There is a copy character count (100 for the title and 500 for the description), but most people will only see the first 50-60 characters in their feed. Use this space wisely.

A technical detail to keep in mind when posting video is the sound. People pin whenever inspiration hits, which could be in a circumstance where sound isn’t an option. In this context, visually driven content is your best bet. If sound is an important element, adding captions for any dialogue is a great way to grab pinners’ attention and help them understand your message in a way that’s significantly more accessible.

Promoting Video Content

When your Pinterest video finds its audience, boosting it to an even larger one is an opportunity to optimize for ROI. Similar to the process for other social channels, promoting a video on Pinterest is as easy as clicking a button. What separates it from the others is that promoted content can actually be sized up, so it not only reaches more feeds, it also stands out in a big way. If you do plan to promote, consider this when you’re formatting—paid content can have the unique aspect ratio of 16:9, so having a backup file of that size comes in handy.

Pinterest provides a lot of flexibility for brands to customize how a video is promoted, so your content can be used for anything from awareness to conversion campaigns. You get to choose if it shows up in search results, in-feed, or in the “more like this” section of a related pin. To narrow your target even further, select a specific audience, keyword, or interest to associate with. These options give marketers the easiest route to the people they genuinely want to reach to maximize conversions.

Measuring Success

Ready to get pinning? Give yourself a refresh on Pinterest metrics to best understand what’s working and what needs a second look. Once you get the hang of it, pinners will be crazy in love with your content.

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