I've been fascinated, and slightly horrified, by their pivot away from social functionality and towards a vision of a neutral bookmarking site.
It's not that I'd want Pinterest to be more social in and as an end itself, but rather because I think it better incentivizes people to create good quality content, and it makes it easier to discover things I want to find.
There's very little ROI for cultivating a public image on Pinterest, so few people put much effort into doing it. At the same time, people who have taste similar to mine are a much better way to find things than any algorithm Pinterest has ever released. And yet, they keep emphasizing algorithmic recommendations while disincentivizing people from publicly expressing their taste and making it harder for me to follow people I like.
And then there are the ads, which, as a bunch of other commenters have pointed out, tend to be really far out of line from anything I've ever expressed interest in. It's just off-putting to see a bunch of low-quality ads for tacky crap in the middle of my feed of minimalist interiors.
Maybe they have something up their sleeves, or maybe I'm very different from their target user. Otherwise I just don't agree with their product direction.
This seems likely to be an inventory issue more than anything else. Fine-grained targeting requires fine-grained ads which requires a sub-linearly scaling sales team.
It's not something you'll hear unless you're in the know, but there is a pretty high level of animosity towards Pinterest in most retail marketing departments. I love Pinterest, so it was surprising to learn when we started this work, but it boils down to: 1) traffic from Pinterest ads show very poor quality / engagement. 2) Pinterest has not been a good partner - they've actively "snubbed" a number of big labels. There are even a few major retailers who "deleted their Pinterest". 3) Organic Pinterest basically doesn't work, so they won't even put an intern part time onto managing their Pinterest account. Even one of their top retailers, Nordstrom, appears to use a bot to post to their account.
When your ad dollars don't show ROI, people spend elsewhere. And if your main customers aren't engaging your platform, that's definitely trouble too.
So yeah, a ton of fear mongering on here. I'm long on Pinterest.
Yep, I could not have said it better. Pinterest is now intent on serving us up predigested pap, while at the same time serving us up more literally to advertisers. Item: It's impossible now to discover who else likes a pin that you love. It's bewildering, it's a sea-change, and it effectively renders Pinterest useless to me now.
My bigger concern is yours, that Pinterest will lose its human touch by removing social features. The new tried-it feature seems like a promising new foray into making Pinterest social again in a way that's uniquely Pinterest. Time will tell.
"There isn’t a user-generated component on the platform, so people aren’t here to learn about what they’re friends are doing. They’re there to plan their lives. And people plan their lives through content that brands produce.”
This sounds completely wrong to me...
However, I know I'm at least somewhat atypical in my spending habits & life planning, so it's hard for me to judge.