​Pinterest opens Sydney office, looks to win over local marketers

CMO chats with the social media platform's new local chief about how the company is scaling up resources to meet user and marketer demand

Carin Lee-Skelton
Carin Lee-Skelton

Pinterest has opened an office in Australia and is busy scaling its teams to meet and grow advertiser and marketing demand from local businesses.

This is Pinterest’s third office in the Asia-Pacific region after opening a Singapore office in July 2019 to service Southeast Asia and India. Its Tokyo office opened in 2013. The Australian office will be led by newly appointed country manager, Carin Lee-Skelton, who has managed sales organisations at Pinterest over the past four years in the UK. She will be focused on growing Pinterest’s work with brands in the two countries.

Pinterest launched advertising in Australia and New Zealand in 2017 and recently started building a team to work with local advertisers in various industries locally, partnering with brands such as Myer, Domain, and Woolworths. 

“Over the past year, we’ve been meeting growing advertiser demand by scaling our teams where we’ve launched ads such as in Australia and New Zealand, as well as expanding our ads business into new markets,” said  global head of sales at Pinterest, Jon Kaplan. “With Carin’s proven industry knowledge and years of experience driving results for brands on Pinterest, we’re looking forward to further developing the opportunities for businesses in Australia and New Zealand with a local team under her leadership.”

Lee-Skelton told CMO APAC is one of its fastest-growing regions, with millions of people using the social media platform each month, delivering an increase of more than 50 per cent over the past year.The company boasts of about 300 million users globally.

“Our ads offerings are now available to businesses in 19 countries, three times more than last year, but it’s still early days for our international expansion. We’re excited to finally have a home base in A/NZ as demand for our service grows in the region,” she said.

“Our objective globally is to grow the user base, and give everyone inspiration to create a life they love. The more people using the service and the more content is generated, the more it will grow. We also want to demonstrate businesses can achieve increase engagement with audiences by using Pinterest to share content and provoke action."

Lee-Skelton described Pinterest as a "virtual discovery engine", and said the ambition is to educate businesses, creatives and publishers on how they can be using the platform.

"Pinterest provides inspiration right through to doing, and it’s very personal for our users. It’s not about what friends are family are doing, it’s about something they’re going to do," she continued.   

Pinners in the two countries save nearly 4 million ideas to Pinterest each day, giving businesses a chance to reach people when they’re considering what to do or buy next. In many instances, users don’t yet know what they want a buy or do when they come to Pinterest, Lee-Skelton said.

"In fact, 97 per cent of searches are unbranded, yet they are coming with intent. Eighty-three per cent have made a purchase based on content they’ve seen on Pinterest," she said. 

“Given we have 200 billion ideas across  four billion boards, users are coming to us with purpose, so they expect to see branded content. It’s a great opportunity for marketers to tap into people early in decision-making process, when they have a discovery mindset, as it makes it easier to take them through the funnel.”

Follow CMO on Twitter: @CMOAustralia, take part in the CMO conversation on LinkedIn: CMO ANZ, follow our regular updates via CMO Australia's Linkedin company page, or join us on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/CMOAustralia.  

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