Old El Paso

Taking a new approach to Pinterest ads pays off

The Mexican food brand ran a campaign to promote their new taco shell flavor, lifting awareness by 7% and intent by a whopping 10% with their max. width video Pins.1

lift in consideration intent
lift in aided brand awareness

Their goal

Driving awareness and purchase intent

Celebrating 80 years of taco love in 2018, Old El Paso has been inspiring modern Mexican food at home since 1938. Today a division of General Mills, the brand has a long and storied history in the annals of American food. In 1969, Old El Paso became the first brand to advertise Mexican food in the US. A year later, their products were standbys in the first Mexican food sections that appeared in supermarkets.

Old El Paso’s taco, burrito and fajita dinner kits, salsas, enchilada sauces, seasoning mixes and other products help at-home cooks around the world get dinner together with minimal preparation and cooking time.

For this campaign, they wanted to drive awareness and purchase intent for their new product: Stand ‘N Stuff Hint of Lime taco shells. Fried with a flat bottom, the shells can stand on their own to get filled with all the fixings. Hint of Lime is the newest flavor variety in the popular product line.

Katie Herr, Brand Experience Manager
Old El Paso
Without the insights from the Pinterest team, I don’t know that we would have considered doing anything different with this campaign. We’ll definitely be doing more product-focused Pins going forward and more video.

Their solution

Using insights to find a new strategy

Old El Paso looked to Pinterest specifically, as they knew that 70 million Pinners are actively engaging with food and beverage content on Pinterest,2  and among them, 72% of food and beverage weekly Pinners have made a purchase based on seeing content from food and beverage brands on Pinterest.The team knew they wanted to expand beyond traditional step-by-step instructions on how to bring taco night to life, and Old El Paso recognized that Pinterest is a strong awareness platform that could help them highlight their new product launch.

To promote their Stand ‘N Stuff Hint of Lime taco shells Old El Paso also tried a new, insights-driven approach. They developed a series of Pins that put the spotlight on the shells themselves, a departure from the recipe content they’d been running. The new campaign Pins featured images, standard video and max. width video, all suggesting reasons to try to new shells as well as serving ideas. The creative’s bright colors and fresh flavors clearly stood out in feeds.

Old El Paso used keyword and interest targeting to reach the right audience, and ran a Kantar Millward Brown Brand Lift Insights study to measure the results.

Their results

Max results from max. width video

Old El Paso’s entire campaign resulted in a 2% lift in aided brand awareness, a 4% lift in Pin awareness and a 3% lift in consideration intent.4

Max. width video alone delivered an impressive 7% lift in aided brand awareness and a whopping 10% lift in consideration intent.5

Advertiser tips

  • Keep innovating. For the Old El Paso team, recipe Pins always performed well, but the new, product-focused approach set a new bar.

  • Definitely try video at max. width. Old El Paso wasn’t sure how it would work for their audience, but wow. Did it ever.

  • The team learned that Pinterest insights are a goldmine for helping brands stay ahead of what’s trending.


1Old El Paso data, 2018

2Pinterest Ads Manager, US, October 2018

3GfK, US, Pinterest Path to Purchase Study among Weekly Pinners who use Pinterest in the Category, November 2018

4Old El Paso data, 2018

5Old El Paso data, 2018



North America


Products used
Promoted Video