Pinterest is one of those up-and-comers in the world of social advertising.
The image-based social network doesn’t divulge audience numbers, but comScore pegs it at around 60 million monthly active users (MAUs).
Of course, that’s not quite the volume of Twitter’s 271 million MAUs or Facebook’s 1.3 billion, but it’s still nothing to sneeze at, especially as activity on branded Pinterest pages affect in-store merchandising and promotional decisions. Just ask Nordstrom or Vineyard Vines.
There’s a marked difference in how Pinterest works with marketers. Both Facebook and Twitter have invested so heavily in advertising and marketing products – CRM matching programs, retargeting, video, trusted partner programs and ecommerce tools – that it’s fair to say they’re each building internal ad and marketing tech stacks, designed to extract value from consumer activities within each social network’s walled garden.
“A lot of sites want to keep you on the service for as long as possible,” said Joel Meek, head of Pinterest’s online sales and operations. “We want to take you off of Pinterest, go on that trip, redo your living room or get the clothes for the party you’re going to. We want to see a lot of action.”
Pinterest views itself as a discovery portal, through which consumers might find inspiration to travel, create or buy products they weren’t actively considering. From there, Pinterest tries to direct those users away from its own platform to the branded sites where they can purchase.
This goal informs Pinterest’s current marketing product build-out, from an analytics and reporting dashboard released in late August to Promoted Pins, a paid media unit still in beta (there’s no timeline for a general release).