- Pinterest is looking to "rebrand" its identity, at least for revenue-purposes by convincing marketers it’s more a search marketplace than social media platform.
- The perception it has to overcome is of the network as simply an online scrapbooking tool.
- The shift in focus comes after research found Pinterest trailed Facebook, Instagram and Twitter for sales conversions, despite a recent addition of a "Buy it" button that allows users to shop directly on the site.
Its users might see Pinterest as a social media network where they collect and share pins and pinboards, but the company wants marketers to view the platform as a space for product search and discovery to hopefully grab some search marketing revenue. Tim Kendall, Pinterest’s head of monetization, said the platform isn’t used to connect with people like other social media platforms, such as Facebook, but instead is a “catalog of ideas” that users search.
One reason Pinterest would like to be seen as worthy of search marketing dollars is that search still gets the largest portion of digital ad budgets accounting for over 45% of all U.S. digital ad spending in 2014, according to eMarketer.
Pinterest also trails its social media competition in sales conversions according to research from ChannelAdvisor. Facebook led all platforms by a wide margin at 64% combining U.S. and U.K. results. Twitter came in second at 19% and Instagram third at 9%. Pinterest lagged in fourth at 5%, although it performed better in the U.S. than the U.K.