Pinterest is aiming to continue its metamorphosis from social media parvenu to Internet super-site with the introduction of advertising across its network. The pinning site was originally lauded for the more authentic, personal feel of its user experience – which made it so appealing to users and such a tricky network to penetrate for brands – so it’s not clear how fans will react to this shift towards a more commercial model.
Pinterest’s CEO, Ben Silbermann, announced the changes last week, saying: “We’re going to start experimenting with promoting certain pins [because] it’s so important that Pinterest is a service that will be here to stay.”
It’s not the first move towards monetisation that the site’s owners have made, with product pins for e-tailers already being introduced. You can read more on these here.
How the introduction of ‘promoted pins’ will affect the overall experience of Pinterest isn’t yet clear, the site has already approached some specially selected brands to help get the ads working well before a full rollout. Silbermann has promised that paid content will be tasteful, transparent, relevant and iterative. With traffic to the site growing steadily since its popularity blew up in 2011, one thing does look certain – Pinterest will be around for at least a little while longer!