Pinterest's promoted pins preview ads to come

Pinterest CEO Ben Silbermann reassured users that promoted pins won't be "flashy banners or pop-up ads."

Pinterest has added several new features this year to improve the user experience.
Pinterest has added several new features this year to improve the user experience.

You knew it was coming. Pinterest is testing promoted pins in what is certainly a preview of how the company will make money from all those carefully curated food photo collections.

Pinterest CEO Ben Silbermann in an email to users on 19 September said the image-rich social network will experiment by promoting just a handful of pins in search results and category feeds.

"For example, a pin for a Darth Vader outfit from a costume shop might be promoted in a search for 'Halloween.' Nobody's paying for anything yet--we want to see how things go, and, more than anything, hear what you think," Silbermann wrote in the email, which was later posted to Pinterest's blog under the heading, "Planning for the Future."

In his email, Silbermann said: "I know some of you may be thinking, 'Oh come the banner ads.' But we're determined to not let that happen."

Pinning for profit

The future of Pinterest is profit--at least, that's the goal. Like other services of its ilk, Pinterest began as a desktop-only social network focused on building users. The company has spent the last year retooling its look, adding new features, and crafting a mobile-first strategy.

Pinterest is incredibly popular with retailers, both as a forum for displaying their wares and as a tool for finding out what's popular with shoppers.

Silbermann said as much when he spoke at the AllThingsD conference in May.

"We think there's a direct link between the things people think, the things people do, and the things they buy," he said. "It's explicit."

The three-year-old network now faces the challenge of monetising the images its users find beautiful or inspiring. Promoted pins could be the answer. Silbermann promised pinners that the promotions will be tasteful, transparent, relevant, and "improved based on your feedback."

"No flashy banners or pop-up ads," he said. "We'll always let you know if someone paid for what you see, or where you see it."

Pinterest hasn't begun testing promoted pins yet, but the rollout starts soon.

Join the CMO newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.
Show Comments

Supporting Association

Blog Posts

For marketers, data is the customer

In this cluttered environment, effective marketing is all about the delivery of relevant, personal content where and when a customer is most likely to engage with it. However, only 21 per cent of marketers currently believe they’re achieving this. Why?

Corinne Sklar

Global CMO, Bluewolf

An analyst, a creative and a technologist all walk into a bar…

It’s time to get rid of departmental silos. Not just talk about it. Do it.

The hidden cost of organisation silos

How do you design and deliver exceptional customer experience in an organisation that still behaves in functional silos?

Graham Winter

Australian psychologist and author

Awesome piece Brad. Agree strongly on the "lack of available talent to operate them"

Chris Brinkworth

How to choose a customer experience management platform

Read more

Interesting article Nadia, Beacon technology helps the advertisers to provide more accurate location based relevant advertisements on to ...

Bfonics Global

Adshel to deploy beacon technology across outdoor advertising panels nationally

Read more

Tell a story for me in this great article is the most important for me. It ties in with the company events, product evolution and how to ...

Hitesh Parekh

What Marvel Comics has taught us about marketing

Read more

I do not get it...?Why would anyone pay extra for something they can make (copy the ingredients as listed for a mogul) themselves using ...

Girl Downunder

Domino’s Pizza Mogul puts product creation and marketing in consumers’ hands

Read more

eHarmony, is a 15 years old obsolete site and a HOAX, based on a big scientific fraud, only sustained by big marketing budget.The normati...


How eHarmony’s date with data has lifted customer conversions

Read more

Latest Podcast

More podcasts

Sign in