Pinterest Is Climbing the Social Ladder In Some Major Ways

September 8, 2016

Ahh, Pinterest.

DIY projects, tired tattoos, and cupcakes that belong on the Food Network. It’s the site that brands tend to stray away from probably because this all they think of when they imagine advertising on Pinterest.

But here’s the thing, brands, Pinterest is so much more than wedding pins and overly complicated recipes. It’s on the verge of becoming the next Amazon and with its recent updates in the past two months, the social platform is showing no signs of letting down.

Get in Loser, We’re Going Pinning

Pinterest introduced shopping to its site a little over a year ago, but now there’s even more to get excited about and more excuses to shop, baby. 

Pinterest added suggested items and a virtual shopping bag so that users can collect multiple Buyable Pins into one place before purchasing, now either on the app or desktop website. I know what you’re thinking: “So what? They’re just like any retail site now.” Baby steps, people.

This is my bag, baby. 

These little additions are not even the coolest part. The social media/retail site has made some pretty high-tech advancements including Visual and Camera Search.

Visual Search allows users to shop for items within a pin. Say you find your dream couch in a pin of a living room setting. You can now alert Pinterest that you want this perfect piece of furniture and it will search for it among Buyable Pins to display that couch or the next best one. Well, dang, that’s pretty freakin’ awesome.

Technology is wild. 

Still not impressed? After you’ve purchased your dream couch, you’re hanging out at some friend of a friend’s house—let’s call her Vanessa—and you see a lamp that is the perfect compliment to your recent faux leather investment. It’s a little awkward to just ask Vanessa, who you barely know, where she got her lamp. Use Camera Search (coming soon) to snap a pic for Pinterest and it will find a Buyable Pin of that lamp or one similar to it. You can basically buy whatever your heart desires/your wallet can handle.

Targeting Game On Target

While all of these new ways to shop are impressive, they don’t really exhibit how Pinterest helps advertisers. The social platform also announced the new ways it will be targeting pinners.

Similar to Facebook, after users browse products on a retail website, an ad or more properly referred to as a Promoted Pin, will appear among other pins on Pinterest later on. Still creepy, we know, but a little less invasive in the mixture of pins.

Pinterest knows I was looking at MAC products not too long ago. They’re luring me in.

Pinterest also launched look-alike targeting, which allows brands to advertise to users who “look similar” to their target audience. For example, a pinner searching for “Cake Recipes” is likely a part of the same target audience as someone who purchases Betty Crocker Icing. They would be more likely buy this promoted pin in their “Cake Recipe” search rather than in a search for “DIY Invitations.”

Lastly, the social media platform now permits brands to display a promoted pin to users based on if the users recently came across the same brand’s ad on their phone or if they subscribe to the brand via email.

These are huge steps for Pinterest. To make sure all of their grounds are covered with these improvements the company acquired the Math Camp Team and hired previous Snapchat Executive Gunnard Johnson, introducing the role of Head of Measurement Science and Insights. Both of these new hires will help Pinterest introduce better, more enhanced marketing and more products. They have already created an impact with the announcement of videos and the acquisition of Instapaper.

With all of these advancements, will Amazon ever lose to Pinterest? With products, potential social media dominance, and a search engine to the niche corners of the internet, it’s on the road to being a close second.