written by
AlexShi

Pinterest is on the market, will it be a dark horse on social platforms?

saas ad spy tool 9 min read

1. Advertising industry intruder

After 9 years of establishment and more than 250 million monthly lives, two-thirds of them are female users. After encircling such a group of users with quality (realization potential), Pinterest does not want everyone to regard it as a social platform. Define yourself as a productivity tool that helps users plan their dreams.
This positioning is quite worthwhile. Think about it, so far, the vast majority of 2C (and recognized success) Internet companies on the market either rely on tools to start (such as search, e-commerce), or believe in the platform as king (such as news, long/short video) , social).

Pinterest is a bit out of the ordinary: it doesn't consider itself a purely picture social platform (even if everyone says it's a picture social platform), and it doesn't allow itself to be a search tool. Pinterest clearly has a dream that wants to meet the dual needs of users' emotions and functions.
Because of the first-mover advantage of Google, Facebook, and Amazon (such as user search habits, a broad user base, complete advertising infrastructure, and complete behavioral data), Pinterest must confess its weakness in advertising. In the prospectus, the company also revealed its ambition: For the company, the next biggest opportunity is to promote the development of visual search advertising and visual e-commerce.

With regard to the perception of the advertising industry, Ben Thompson's understanding is quite in place. He believes that the core task of this line is to lead (spoof) consumers through a thing called "ad funnel."

This "ad funnel" is divided into three layers: awareness, consideration, and conversion.

Television and radio are quite effective at the level of “consciousness” because they have the widest audience and the longest time spent in it;
In the “consideration” phase, past newspapers can often play a major role because the coupons and discount information above can induce consumers to make purchase decisions;
Coupled with retailers' offline promotion, shopping mall promotion and other means, most consumers who come to this step are easily "transformed" into loyal customers.

However, as soon as Internet advertising appeared, it directly aimed at the bottom of the funnel, thus achieving the first subversion of traditional advertising channels. why? Because users search for related products on the Internet, they often cross the “consciousness” and “consider” stages, and have a considerable probability of “transforming” into customers.
In this session, early Google almost completely monopolized the search advertising market, so it enjoyed the first dividend.

However, at this time, there is still an unresolved problem in Internet advertising. It does bring accurate users and maximizes “transformation”, but it is difficult to help advertisers at the top of the “ad funnel” (ie “consciousness” stage). .

So everyone suspects: If you can't let a wider group of people know their brand, and can't expand the potential customer base on the top of the funnel, what if you achieve a more accurate "transformation"?

Faced with this problem, Facebook's solution is to use the Newsfeed ad slot and Instagram video ads to domesticate the consumer's brand "consciousness", and then redirect them to the "consider" and "conversion" stages.

This gameplay has also been borrowed by Google. To a certain extent, YouTube's Newsfeed design for Facebook (although thanks to Google Brain's algorithm recommendation) is also aimed at solving consumer brand awareness.

With the widest audience, the most ad slots, and more accurate advertising, Facebook and Google have stabilized Yahoo, Twitter, LinkedIn, Yelp and other small advertising platforms for a long time.

But this stalemate seems to be being broken by Pinterest.

At the stage of instilling consumer “consciousness” and “considering” purchases, Pinterest attempts to seamlessly connect user-created content with content that may motivate purchases through computer vision technology, allowing brand advertisers and retailers to The content of the advertisement is balanced with the content of the platform itself.

2. A maverick social platform

If you have the habit of reading the New York Times, Wall Street Journal and other mainstream international technology commercial media, you will find a magical thing: you can hardly see anyone talking about Pinterest. Hype and all kinds of PR news are so little that people forget the existence of this company.

Part of the reason is its functional design and positioning. Pinterest is very unlike a typical social platform: it doesn't leak user data to third-party developers like Facebook, nor is it hacked like Twitter, or even serious content review issues like YouTube and Tiktok. Advertising marketing, we all know a lot of advertising spy tools, of course, mentioned here [Bigspy] a free advertising spy tool, said BigSpy AD spy accumulates data that is huge, including Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Shopify ads and constantly updated,
It has 10,000,000+ Ads, 3,000,000+ Advertisers, 55,000,000+ Products, 300,000+ Stores. This is not an advertisement, just a friend who needs it can experience it.

It has been iterating slowly and slowly over time. For example, users want to simplify the operation with the excellent visual recognition function of the Pinterest platform. It really only adds Pinterest Lens function to help the camera discover new things and make the phone smarter.

For example, Sarah Tavel, who now invests in Benchmark and is responsible for products at Pinterest, once mentioned the “user banking” theory that is widely recognized within the company. They regard the trust of users as bank deposits, and the products cause users The burden and harm is to withdraw money from this bank.

In order to live up to the trust of users, they always keep their bank deposits far faster than withdrawals. And there is such an empirical indicator: five positive user experiences are required to make up for a single bad experience. This means that to ensure that the "user bank" is functioning properly, you need to accept a fairly expensive exchange rate.

In addition, the company's management did not disclose or explain the company's affairs in its personal capacity, and its CEO even set its own Twitter to be private.

It is such a company that has no discussion of heat at all, and has won many fans by this slow and stable method.

3. Short-term value of Pinterest listing: boosting investor confidence

There will undoubtedly be a big year in 2019. Share the first trip to Lyft, the video communication tool Zoom, the picture social tool Pinterest has surfaced, and if there is no accident, Uber, Slack and other companies will also hand over their listing answer.

However, Lyft, which was listed on the beach, has fallen more than 25% in less than a month, throwing a blockbuster to latecomers. Many investors are worried that this is the epitome of the fragmentation of the primary market valuation bubble, which may shake the confidence of the company and the followers.

Fortunately, Pinterest for C-end users and Zoom, a communications tool company for B-side users, have largely dispelled the haze that lingers in the hearts of everyone.

Many people may not have heard of Zoom. It has been smashed by Microsoft for a long time. According to Recode, Microsoft has been trying to buy it for years, but it has been because the price has not been discussed.

For Microsoft, this acquisition is of course valuable. It acquired Skype for $8.5 billion in 2011, but it has been difficult to truly realize Skype's business for a long time. It is probably worthwhile to use Zoom to enhance the synergy value of office products.

However, the Zoom party has never accepted the price set by Microsoft, and this decision seems to be quite sensible now. The last round of financing before its listing took place in 2017, with a US$1 billion valuation and a $100 million investment in Sequoia. The valuation of the listed roadshow is about 9 billion US dollars. The current reason is that the profit level, the high growth rate, and the subscription business are widely recognized, causing the stock price to soar by more than 70%.

As for Pinterest, this social platform, which was launched at the same time as the iPad, has long been a violation of Wall Street. There are two reasons for its increase of more than 20% on the first day of listing:
First, Pinterest's user growth rate is not sexy enough, but the advertising business's expansion pace is still good (2018 year-on-year growth rate of nearly 60%), compared to Lyft, a burning company, is already a good choice.
Second, it has been two years since the last time the same company ( Snapchat) went public. So on a certain level, it also enjoys some attention premiums, which is a helpless choice for investors to bet on new social opportunities.

Lyft, Pinterest, and Zoom, three typical technology companies, have clearly tried the preferences and enthusiasm of the current overseas IPO market. In the face of this market, which has always been dominated by fundamentals and emotions, the performance of the three companies is the mapping of investment sentiment.

4. The long-term significance of Pinterest's listing: a way to represent the Internet?

Nir Eyal (author of the book Hooked: How to Build Habit-Forming Products) discussed a question before: The next stage of the Internet will go where? (Where is the Web Going?)

He attributed the driving force behind the continuous development of the Internet to interactive mode, because the way products and users interact changed, so user behaviors and habits will change simultaneously. And there is a general trend: the user's ability to understand information, processing speed and exchange difficulty are gradually decreasing.

The direct impact of this trend is to drive the prosperity of UGC, so more users have the ability to create rich, more valuable content. According to this logic, we can understand the position of many Internet platforms from the two dimensions of content production difficulty and UGC ratio:

Looking from left to right, the above picture shows us the development trend of the Internet platform. With the continuous evolution of interaction methods, the difficulty of content production is decreasing, and the proportion of UGC is getting bigger.

If we want to predict where the next phase of the Internet will go, we should first look at what happened to the past Internet platform.

The above picture shows three changes to the Internet platform. Simply put, from Web 1.0 to Web 3.0, the interaction between Internet users and information has been changing: from initial delivery to sharing, to current collection and consumption.

First look at Web 1.0, an era of information delivery, a small number of professional content producers provide one-to-many services, the vast majority of users mainly based on web browsers to obtain information.

When it comes to Web 2.0, social media has begun to exert its strength. Especially for the social platforms represented by Facebook, the launch of Newsfeed has greatly improved the user's ability to share information. In the process, the vast majority of ordinary users had a sense of participation for the first time, so they also began to participate in content creation and dissemination.

For now and foreseeable future, perhaps the Web 3.0 phase. Because of the previous preparations, Internet content is no longer scarce, and simple information transmission and information sharing are hard to produce freshness. As a result, platforms such as Twitter and Pinterest have emerged because they have found and better satisfied the new demands—information collection and consumption—and these social platforms have not responded, and these platforms have begun to have their own barriers.

Image and video socialization has made Instagram to some extent (the reason behind it is multi-dimensional). If you really get to the second half of the social gathering and consumption of information, Pinterest may be the dark horse! ! !

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