What is it that really sets Pinterest apart from other social media platforms, in the eye of the advertiser? Sure, trends and posts spread fast with the re-pinning feature, but Facebook and Twitter have sharing features that are just as effective, don’t they? Maybe it’s the personal boards and power-users that have promotional ability above the typical user? Then again, maybe not. Sites like YouTube and Tumblr have had similar capabilities for some time now. No, the reason Pinterest is a smart investment for advertising funds are the search ads it has recently been focusing on.
Search ads are among the most effective advertising methods of the digital world, and contributed nearly half of all digital revenue in 2015. However, more than 95% of that revenue came from Google alone- and while Google is still the undisputed king of the search ad, there’s a lot of room for other companies to move into more focused niches of search based advertising. Pinterest has recently begun to capitalize on this void, and its already existing structure leaves it ideally suited to this task.
Pinterest has over 150 million monthly users, and the focus is on how these people are interacting with the site. Due to its structure and user culture, Pinterest is most commonly used as a planning tool and source of inspiration. This has caused it to become a product driven site that isn’t marketing it’s own products. It’s visually based sharing mimics the displays of a store. Since most of the searches made on Pinterest are for unbranded products or services, the display the user sees could be for any ‘store’ they prefer, even ones they have never heard of. When combined with its primary user base of young to middle-aged women (the same demographic to hold the majority of buying power in the US) the search function becomes one of the most efficient advertising focuses available.
Pinterest has started to capitalize on this golden egg of theirs, and in the last month they have begun rolling out a series of features designed to enhance the effectiveness of targeted advertising in their search results. Features, according to a recent article on AdAge, include a keyword search and shopping campaigns akin to the product listing ads done by Google. To ensure this is done in the most beneficial way possible, Pinterest has partnered with leading digital advertising firm Kenshoo and influential brands. These include Target, eBay, and Home Depot, all of which are involved with early testing. Pinterest’s advertising tools have been rapidly increasing in number, and are something the advertising world will continue to watch develop.