Predictions season is coming, which means you can expect to read an array of opinions on what to expect in digital marketing, what trends to watch, and which platforms to be active on. Getting in ahead of the pack, this week, we’re publishing our predictions on what’s coming next for all the major social platforms in 2018 – we’ve already covered Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Snapchat, and today, we’re covering LinkedIn, and in this post, Pinterest.
So what does the Pin network have in store for us in the coming year? Here are our predictions.
Pinterest in 2017
While it’s nowhere near as big as the other players, Pinterest has continued to carve its own path in 2017, adding in new tools – in particular, Pinterest Lens – to boost its use case, while also reporting a jump in users to 175 million monthly actives (up from the 150 million reported last October). The platform will look to build on that in the next year, with more tools to underline it’s online shopping capacity.
Improved Buyable Pins
As Pinterest continues to evolve, it’s moving away from its ‘social network’ roots, and more towards becoming an eCommerce platform. Part of this development has been the evolution of its in-stream buying options, and in 2017, Pinterest has added a range of updates on this front, including improved buying processes and advanced ad types which focus on guiding users to conversion. In 2018, Pinterest will look to further advance their in-stream buying options, making it as easy as possible for users to discover products and make purchases without ever leaving the app.
Updated Taste Graph
One of Pinterest’s biggest developments of 2017 has been their ‘Taste Graph’, an expanded collection of categories and options based on Pinterest user behaviors, enabling improved ad targeting based on consumer trends. That provides significant opportunity for marketers – and as Pinterest continues to evolve its understanding of user trends, you can expect the Taste Graph to evolve into a more functional, specific targeting option which will better enable advertisers to reach the right consumers at the right time with the right offers.
In some ways, the Taste Graph seems to pale in comparison to Facebook’s advanced ad options, but don’t overlook it. Pinners come to the platform with very high purchase intent, and their Taste Graph is a reflection of this – meaning it’s not just a range of related interests, it’s shopping and product focused, making it, potentially, a much more valuable targeting tool.
As noted, one of Pinterest’s biggest developments has been their image-recognition fuelled Lens tool, which enables users to search Pins by simply taking a picture of any object. The next level of that could be the ability to not only search for items, but to also use AR tools to overlay specific products onto your real world scene. Ikea recently added similar with their new ‘Place’ app – the tool recognizes the dimensions in a room then uses that to overlay furniture or other products, enabling you to see what they might look like in your home. It’s kind of the reverse of Lens, enabling you to place items, rather than use them as the source for a search. The tool would fit perfectly into Pinterest’s core focus, and would utilize similar functionality as Lens.
Improved Profile Options
Pinterest may also need to provide more options for user profiles to enable further customization and presentation options. An example of where Pinterest might look on this is their recent interactive Haunted House promotion for Halloween. In the application, you’re able to move through a virtual house, clicking on various items to get Halloween ideas. Pinterest may look to provide a similar showcase option for businesses, enabling them to showcase their products in a more complete setting. They may also look to update the basic presentation of Pinterest profiles to allow for the creation of more immersive business experiences, boosting presentation options.
As noted, while the other social platforms get more focus, Pinterest continues to move along its own path, and build a solid business through their expanding network. Pinterest is also interesting in that their development resources are much more limited, yet they’ve still been able to utilize the data they have to come up with tools like Pinterest Lens. Similar to Snapchat, Pinterest has a knack for innovation, and for catering to their audience needs – and as they do, they continue to enhance their business model, and provide a viable option for more marketers.