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Pinterest; Pinners Vs. Promoters

Pinterest has been making improvements for the last year or so, adding analytics, changing the layout and search options and it’s all for the good generally. In May they started working with a small group of advertisers to test promoted pins in the US. The idea was the make promoted pins more relevant to individual pinners and as a byproduct, help advertisers understand how the ads were affecting their business. Next month, Pinterest will be updating and explaining their plans within their privacy policy.

There are a few things in the pipeline to help improve Pinterest for advertisers, one thing will be to give them a deeper understanding of how their promoted pins are doing; how often people are seeing them and then how many people are buying after having seen the promoted pin. Whilst useful to advertisers, the way this information could be used could be irritating to a pinner.

On one hand you have advertisers who saw that they promoted a pinned product and sold 25% more, and so continue in the same vain of promoting that pin to continue selling more; a viscous cycle. On the other hand you have pinners who are trying to create mood boards and collect inspiration, who keep seeing the same product appear because they once liked the brand who are selling said product, but aren’t particularly interested in that product. Pinterest hopes to incorporate the information advertisers share with them, to help show pinners relevant pins that aren’t random or distracting, however, comments from pinners have stated that they are already starting to see art they aren’t interested in and products they don’t care for, showing up in their feeds.

This seems to be a pattern within all social media platforms; promoting what advertisers want to show, that fit within certain elements of the users interests, but are too general to be directly interesting most of the time. However, Pinterest allow a way to combat that, a simple solution within user settings: ”Do Not Track”. Do Not Track, or DNT is a privacy setting you can set in most browsers.

Pinterest say:
”We support DNT because we think it’s really important that you have a simple way to control how your info gets used. That’s why in addition to giving you a number of ways to choose how pinterest uses your data, we honor DNT as a signal for how you wants us to use data collect outside of Pinterest.’

It will be interesting to see how Pinterest goes forward with this information and what will happen to user feeds. If successful and all pinners are happy, seeing other platforms go forward with the same privacy policy and advertising set up, would be a refreshing and inspiring foot forward in the social media world; helping to maintain a consistent user retention within platforms that could otherwise experience user decline in years to come through exploitation of information.