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Recently, Pinterest acquired VisualGraph, a company that develops object recognition and visual search software. Many believe that the acquisition suggests a move towards enhancing Pinterest search capabilities and improving the user’s ability to find specific images.
But what does this really mean for the future of Pinterest? And how will it affect the way you use the social media platform to promote your brand and appeal to prospective clients?
What Is VisualGraph?
If you’re reading this blog post, you’re probably already familiar with Pinterest and what it does. But what exactly is VisualGraph?
VisualGraph is a two-person company that develops image recognition software. More specifically, it creates technology that connects images through face recognition, object recognition, and shape/color analysis, among other things. This technology can specifically be used for things like product recommendations and pornography filtering, both of which are appealing for Pinterest.
Pinterest said that the company “will help us build technology to better understand what people are Pinning. By doing so, we hope to make it easier for people to find the things they love.”
What the Acquisition Could Mean for Your Small Business
At this point, it’s too early to say for certain how the union between Pinterest and VisualGraph could affect your small business. What is clear is that Pinterest is looking to better serve its users by allowing them to search for topic-specific images—which can also make it easier for your prospective clients to find you!
More specifically, VisualGraph will better allow Pinterest to optimize image discovery and Pinning. That means increased user engagement, which also makes it easier to integrate seamless ad serving (something the site plans to do later this year). This should also mean:
- Better search results
- Improved content recommendations from users
- Enhanced ability to organize and understand content
By making the site easier to navigate through visual search, Pinterest is essentially enabling individuals to use the platform like a shopping site. Just by participating in Pinterest like you already have (or by starting a Pinterest campaign if you haven’t), your content will reach a better targeted audience of prospective clients—which could mean more visits to your website and potentially more leads as well.
This will also give you the opportunity to produce more relevant ads—Pinterest is currently developing a strategy to focus on ads and the image recognition software by VisualGraph will give them the tools they need to match ads with users who Pin similar content.
Denny Maloney, CEO and co-founder of Pinterest analytics firm Tailwind, says it best:
“Pinterest is more of a discovery engine than a search engine, but I believe visual search could be a hidden gem of the Pinterest business model. Just as with Google or Bing, search on Pinterest tends to indicate users have a strong commercial intent. In many cases, search traffic over time leads revenue generated from pins to occur later in the pin’s life, even if it sees a good deal of viral sharing soon after being pinned.”
What’s Next for Pinterest Search?
Pinterest’s acquisition of VisualGraph isn’t the social media site’s first attempt at improving search functionality for its users. In fact, the company acquired Livestar in March to help users find local recommendations and also redesigned article pins to provide more relevant information. And it doesn’t end here!
It seems that with time Pinterest will only continue to enhance its search results and improve the user experience. It may not be able to compete with the likes of Google, but as it continues to improve, it will provide a large resource for media search that can’t really be found anywhere else.
So what’s next in the development of Pinterest search capabilities?
According to Maloney, we can expect to see the release of the site’s promoted pins ad product this year, as well the addition of many more third party tools that can help businesses better adopt the platform. Maloney also expects to see continued localization efforts and refined methods of organizing content that’ll make it easier for you as a business owner to display images and products and for your clients to view them.
At Blue Corona, we recommend remodelers, landscape designers, and companies with visually-oriented products take advantage of Pinterest as it grows in popularity and as a search platform. If you don’t already have an account, start by creating one. To get the most out of the site, be sure to:
- Place the ‘Pin It’ button on the product pages of your website
- Optimize your profile with relevant keywords and locations
- Create relevant, keyword-rich titles for your boards
- Optimize each Pin with relevant product descriptions, prices, keywords, and locations
- Optimize your images
- Use high quality photos
Don’t have time to implement a social media strategy that will make the most of Pinterest? Let us help! ShareThis reports that content sharing on Pinterest has increased by 58 percent in the last year and it’s only expected to continue growing in popularity. At Blue Corona, we can help you take advantage of these statistics and represent your brand in this highly targeted community of prospective clients. Contact us today to get started!
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About The Author:
Blue Corona is a data-driven online marketing company with offices in Gaithersburg, MD and Charlotte, N.C.
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