Pinterest to Jump on the Ad Bandwagon

For those who are unfamiliar with the website, Pinterest is a social platform that is based on photo sharing.

The concept of the site stems from a scrapbook, where the users create a number of different pin-boards and select various pictures from around the site (or the web) and post them on to their boards.

Users can interact with one another by ‘re-pinning’, commenting or liking each other’s pictures and boards.

The site was launched in March 2010 and in 3 years has built a user-base of 46 million people from around the world and was most recently valued at $2.5 billion.

Last week CEO of Pinterest, Ben Sibermann, announced on his blog that the website is now running trial ads.

Pinterest is one of the last social media portals to join the growing trend of monetizing websites but promises that it will not be tasteless or dishonest like many other websites.

The scrapbooking site will take the lead from other social media platforms such as Facebook and Twitter and will be creating ‘promoted pins’. Sibermann mentions in the blog post that when an ad is posted on the site, it will be marked clearly so that the site’s users are aware when they come across paid-for content. In addition, he promises that each user will only be shown ads that may be of interest to them.

He continues by explaining how this is still in the first stages and they will be looking to improve many aspects with user feedback. He continued and emphasized that there will be no “flashy banners or pop-up ads.”

As users of Pinterest have grown accustomed to their ad-free space, there is concern that there may be a backlash from the users if this is not carried in the least obtrusive manner possible.

There is another perspective on the matter, since Pinterest is used as a scrapbook, many users have created pin-boards that are themed around consumer items that they would like to purchase also known as ‘wish-lists’. This could be a point of interest for many of the business wishing to advertise on the site.

The trial run will be centered around ‘promoted pins’ that show up in the search option rather than directly bombarding the Pinterest users with ads on their homepage.

The business that are taking part in this trial run are a limited number and have already been selected.

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