You may not be paying it much mind, but Pinterest continues to grow, and become an increasingly important product discovery tool for its 250 million active users.
Indeed, Pinterest's focus has gradually shifted away from the social media elements. Pinterest identifies its mission as "to help people discover and do things they love", and it's now far more focused on product discovery than facilitating direct interactions. And with 175 billion Pins on its network, and evolving direct buying and search options, it's hard to ignore the potential of the app for a range of business.
Add to that the fact that 90% of weekly Pinners use the app to make purchase decisions, and you can get some perspective on the potential, which still, many brands are not tapping into.
And as with other visually focussed social networks (Snapchat and Instagram specifically), Pinterest is also seeing significant adoption of influencer marketing. That makes sense - in order to make your posts stand out on these platforms, you need to understand what works, and what doesn't, and no one knows that better than the people who are using them every day, and adapting their skills based on platform tools.
Recognizing the growth and potential in this area, Pinterest has this week announced that it's opening up its API tools to third-party providers to help facilitate improved influencer discovery and connection.
As explained by Pinterest:
"Starting today, we’re opening our content marketing API to third-party influencer marketing platforms to help brands and influencers collaborate more effectively, and create exciting new things on Pinterest. Businesses can gain visibility into key stats like monthly views, followers, impressions, clickthroughs and saves. This access eliminates guesswork for companies looking to identify influencers to create authentic branded content that resonates with their audience. Influencers can use these platforms to simplify the process of connecting with brands who want to hire them for Pinterest campaigns."
Pinterest's research has shown that influencer marketing on the platform can be highly effective, with 92% of Pinterest marketers who've partnered with influencers generating positive results.
Kicking off the new initiative, Pinterest will partner with digital marketing platforms AspireIQ, HYPR, Influence.co, IZEA, Klear, Mavrck, Obvious.ly and OpenInfluence, enabling each of these tools to help brands locate and connect with relevant Pin influencers (or 'Pinfluencers' if you will. You won't? Ah, no problem).
As noted, Pinterest, while not as big as some of the other social platform options, is still growing, and the opportunities to connect with highly engaged, purchase-minded users is significant. It won't be a fit for all brands, but partnering with relevant influencers could certainly be a great way to maximize performance, and get a real sense of its potential for your offerings.
You can get more information about Pinterest's new API tools and options here.