I’m not embarrassed to admit how many times a day I look at Pinterest. It’s on the home page of my lowly iPhone 5s. It hovers there, all red and white, begging me to click on it. And when I do, oh what a wondrous world of exploration! Immediately I see Pins my friends have pinned. And behold, if Pinterest couldn’t get any better, there are Pins that Pinterest picked specifically for me! Well done Pinterest. You hit the nail on the head again. After I peruse my homepage and catch up, I am free to expand my cookbook, find a great workout or build a dream vacation. Pinterest, you sincerely hold my heart.
I understand, this may seem to be an extreme reaction to an app that is really just a small, organized search engine. But, to me, a 26 year old female, it is the ultimate past time. And Pinterest is aware of their power. Now it begs the question, how do they capitalize? If you are an avid Pinterest user like me, you have noticed the sponsored ads. However, if you are like me, you will agree that these sponsored ads are almost undistinguishable from other Pins. And therein lies the genius of Pinterest.
While brands may feel invasive on social platforms like Facebook and Instagram, Pinterest remains an integrated platform. The fact is, a pair of Madewell jeans may appear on my homepage as a “suggested pin” or I may run across Madewell jeans because I searched “how to wear worn in denim.” Either way, I feel I discovered the pair of Madewell jeans. So, as a consumer, I don’t feel I am buying into a marketing tactic if I purchase a pair of jeans because I found it under “Summer Denim Must Haves 2015.” I will energetically scan Pinterest “Suggestions for You” and make purchases off of sponsored pins because, to me, they still feel organic.
So hats off to you Pinterest. Use your power wisely. Capitalize off of your audience but do not overstep your boundaries. Respect that your viewers use Pinterest because they like to discover. If Pinterest can maintain the balance of collaboration, discovery and tactical ad placements, I think they will more than succeed. But, if nothing else, they will win my business.