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PINTEREST

Pinterest Adds Influencer Guidelines to Encourage Positivity

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Pinterest Inc.

plans to introduce a set of guidelines that influencers must adhere to when they post on the platform, as it attempts to preserve its reputation for a more positive user experience than much other social media.

Its so-called Creator Code will prompt anyone using the platform’s Story Pins, which let users share multiple video clips and images in a single post, to post content that is kind, sticks to factual information and practices inclusion, among other commitments.

Social-media companies have been investing in tools to encourage output from influencers, whose contributions they hope will help draw more users and generate more engagement. LinkedIn, the professional networking site owned by

Microsoft Corp.

, last month unveiled a “creator mode” setting for users who want to post original content on the platform.

Facebook Inc.

also said in March it would offer a free publishing tool for people who want to create websites or newsletters. And

Twitter Inc.

in February revealed plans to offer a subscription option for content producers.

But social-media operators also have an interest in making sure their most prominent content creators don’t contribute to unwanted material like misinformation on their platforms. Companies including Facebook’s Instagram and Google’s YouTube, for example, maintain policies for influencers who generate money on their platforms.


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Pinterest, with its image of a relatively safe space for users, has attributed some of its growth in the past year to last summer’s advertiser boycott of Facebook over how it handles hate speech and other unwelcome content on its platforms.

Pinterest’s Creator Code is partly a response to events of the past year, when misinformation spread widely online, said Minnie Bredouw, creative director at Pinterest. The company wanted to give influencers information to help them understand nuances in the content they create for the site, and feel both encouraged and accountable for following the rules, she said.

The new code reinforces the company’s existing community guidelines and standards, the company said.

Pinterest said it removes, limits or blocks the sharing of content that violates its policies, as well as accounts, individuals, groups or domains that spread it. Because every Story Pin is reviewed by a person and machine-learning technology, Pinterest can gauge content subtleties and enforce the Creator Code on its own terms, according to executives.

“It is really to empower creators, so they understand how they can create on Pinterest in the best possible way,” said Colleen Stauffer, global head of creator marketing at Pinterest.

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Pinterest is adding other features, including the ability for influencers to remove user comments from their posts and a reminder to users to be positive before they add comments, a technique known as nudging that has been used on other platforms. It also announced a $500,000 Creator Fund to work with influencers to post on the platform, with a commitment that 50% of the creators whom the company works with come from underrepresented groups.

Enforcing a code of ethics gives brands an extra layer of assurance that ads won’t appear next to content that doesn’t align with their own policies and values, said Gabrielle Blitz Rosen, founder and chief executive of Townhouse Digital LLC, a digital marketing and social-media agency.

“This code of conduct and relationship with creators is something we’ve seen on other platforms, but they are promoting kindness in a way that’s beneficial to creators and to advertisers,” Ms. Rosen said.

Write to Ann-Marie Alcántara at ann-marie.alcantara@wsj.com

Copyright ©2020 Dow Jones & Company, Inc. All Rights Reserved. 87990cbe856818d5eddac44c7b1cdeb8

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PINTEREST

Better Buy: Facebook vs. Pinterest

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These two social media companies are competing for ad dollars.

According to eMarketer, 81% of internet users worldwide use social media each month. Notably, that figure is up from 78% in 2019 as a result of pandemic-driven digitization.

Not surprisingly, that trend has been a tailwind for social giants like Facebook (NASDAQ:FB) and challengers like Pinterest (NYSE:PINS). And given the enormity of the digital ad market, both of these tech companies should continue to grow in the years ahead.

But which stock is the better buy?

What we know about Facebook

Facebook operates several social media platforms, including Facebook, Instagram, Messenger, and WhatsApp. It generates the vast majority of its revenue through the sale of ad space across those platforms, as well as on third-party apps and websites.

A group of young people interacting with smartphones, while various icons (i.e. camera, email, shopping cart) are displayed above their heads.

Image source: Getty Images.

Last year, as the pandemic drove people online, growth in monthly active people (MAP) accelerated. At the same time, 79% of MAP were also daily active people (DAP), up from 78% in 2019 and 77% in 2018. This indicates an uptick in engagement over time.

In the first quarter of 2021, 3.45 billion people used one of Facebook’s platforms on a monthly basis. Notably, the pandemic-driven increases in engagement continued to hold, as 79% of monthly users also signed in daily. And the average revenue per person (ARPP) increased 29% to $7.75 for the quarter.

In total, revenue jumped 48% year over year in Q1, driven by a 12% increase in the number of ads delivered and a 30% increase in the price per ad. That represents a meaningful acceleration in top-line growth compared to the company’s performance in recent years.

Metric

2018

Q1 2021 (TTM)

CAGR

Monthly Active People

2.64 billion

3.45 billion

13%

Revenue

$55.84 billion

$94.4 billion

26%

Free Cash Flow

$15.4 billion

$24.2 billion

22%

Data source: Facebook SEC filings. TTM = trailing-12-months. CAGR = compound annual growth rate.

While Facebook’s growth has been solid, investors should note that revenue has increased more quickly than free cash flow. This reflects Facebook’s weakening operating margin, which has fallen from 45% to 40% over that period.

Even so, Facebook is the leading social media platform worldwide. Over 2.7 billion people use at least one of its products every day — that’s roughly one-third of the globe’s population. That incredible scale has helped it capture 25% of the U.S. digital ad market. Only Alphabet‘s Google has taken more market share.

Going forward, if Facebook can avoid legal trouble, I think it still has room to grow.

What we know about Pinterest

Pinterest takes a different approach to social media. Rather than connecting friends and family, it’s a tool for inspiration, planning, and action. Pinterest has also gone to great lengths to build a positive environment for its users. Most social platforms can’t make the same claim.

Smiling woman interacting with smartphone.

Image source: Getty Images.

Pinterest’s growth strategy has focused on bringing more inspiring and shoppable content to its platform. For instance, it doubled down on video in 2020, enabling brands to engage consumers with dynamic stories and tutorials. Pinterest also made it possible to switch to shop mode from search, and it introduced the verified merchant program, helping consumers identify trusted sellers. In both cases, this simplifies the transition from inspiration to action, increasing value for consumers.

Those efforts also drove record growth in 2020: Pinterest added over 100 million monthly active users, and during Q4 it saw a sixfold increase in the number of businesses using shopping ads on its platform. That boosted average revenue per user (ARPU) to $4.26, up 12% from the prior year. Notably, Facebook’s ARPP was $32.03 in 2020, more than seven times higher than Pinterest’s.

In general, Pinterest has delivered solid financial results over the last few years.

Metric

2018

Q1 2021 (TTM)

CAGR

Monthly Active Users

265 million

478 million

30%

Revenue

$755.9 million

$1.9 billion

51%

Free Cash Flow

($82.6 million)

$230.4 million

N/A

Data source: Pinterest SEC filings. TTM = trailing-12-months. CAGR = compound annual growth rate.

As a caveat, investors should be encouraged by the company’s strong performance in 2020, but they should also expect growth to slow in 2021. As the pandemic abates, people will probably spend less time online.

Even so, Pinterest has plenty of room to grow its business, especially in international markets. Given its execution so far, I think the future looks bright for this social media company.

The verdict

Facebook has achieved incredible scale, dwarfing Pinterest. It’s also much more profitable in terms of absolute dollars. That makes Facebook a formidable competitor.

However, Pinterest has also managed to differentiate itself. Its platform is often a safer environment for brands, since ads are less likely to appear beside hateful content. Additionally, people come to Pinterest looking for inspiration — in other words, they come to Pinterest with the intent to shop. That makes it a better place for marketers to spend ad dollars.

Finally, Pinterest is growing more quickly and its ARPU is several times smaller than Facebook’s ARPP. That means Pinterest has plenty of room to expand, which should create more upside for long-term investors. That’s why Pinterest is the better buy.

This article represents the opinion of the writer, who may disagree with the “official” recommendation position of a Motley Fool premium advisory service. We’re motley! Questioning an investing thesis — even one of our own — helps us all think critically about investing and make decisions that help us become smarter, happier, and richer.

Trevor Jennewine owns shares of Pinterest. The Motley Fool owns shares of and recommends Alphabet (A shares), Alphabet (C shares), Facebook, and Pinterest. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

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PINTEREST

The World’s Most Popular Wedding Destinations, According To Pinterest

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Blue coloured medina in Chefchaouen, Morocco.

According to Pinterest, Morocco is the number one place users want to plan a destination wedding.

getty

Throughout the Covid-19 pandemic, Pinterest has been there to help us travel the world vicariously, find inspiration and share tips for visiting places that might otherwise be off limits to visitors. Now, as more people around the world are vaccinated and travel begins to make its inevitable comeback, the popular social media site is once again serving as a place to organize ideas for dream trips including epic honeymoons and destination weddings in beautiful places the world over.

A recent study by Money.co.uk, a financial site based in the U.K., revealed the most commonly “pinned” wedding destinations around the world and in the U.S. that people have created Pinterest boards for.

Here are the results for the most popular wedding destinations around the world, by country, according to Pinterest users:

1. Morocco, with 1,001 dedicated Pinterest boards.

2. Greece, with 1,000 dedicated Pinterest boards.

3. France, with 999 dedicated Pinterest boards.

4. Italy, with 998 dedicated Pinterest boards.

5. Mexico, with 997 dedicated Pinterest boards.

6. Bali, with 996 dedicated Pinterest boards.

7. Ireland, with 990 dedicated Pinterest boards.

8. Australia, with 984 dedicated Pinterest boards.

9. New Zealand, with 981 dedicated Pinterest boards.

10. Fiji, with 979 dedicated Pinterest boards.

11. Canada, with 978 dedicated Pinterest boards.

12. England, with 977 dedicated Pinterest boards.

13. Ibiza, Spain, with 975 dedicated Pinterest boards.

14. Scotland, with 972 dedicated Pinterest boards.

15. Thailand, with 960 dedicated Pinterest boards.

16. Spain, with 956 dedicated Pinterest boards.

17. Portugal, with 889 dedicated Pinterest boards.

18. USA, with 821 dedicated Pinterest boards.

19. The Bahamas, with 732 dedicated Pinterest boards.

20. Wales, with 725 dedicated Pinterest boards.

Here’s a look at the results for the most popular wedding destinations in the U.S., according to Pinterest users:

1. California, with 1,003 dedicated Pinterest boards.

2. Colorado, with 1,000 dedicated Pinterest boards.

3. Florida, with 1,000 dedicated Pinterest boards.

4. Hawaii, with 1,000 dedicated Pinterest boards.

5. Virginia, with 998 dedicated Pinterest boards.

6. New York, with 997 dedicated Pinterest boards.

7. Texas, with 996 dedicated Pinterest boards.

8. Georgia, with 994 dedicated Pinterest boards.

9. Washington, with 993 dedicated Pinterest boards.

10. Arizona, with 988 dedicated Pinterest boards.

11. Maine, with 985 dedicated Pinterest boards.

12. Oregon, with 981 dedicated Pinterest boards.

13. Utah, with 978 dedicated Pinterest boards.

14. Montana, 977 dedicated Pinterest boards.

15. Maryland, with 976 dedicated Pinterest boards.

16. Ohio, with 973 dedicated Pinterest boards.

17. Tennessee, with 968 dedicated Pinterest boards.

18. Minnesota, with 949 dedicated Pinterest boards.

19. North Carolina, with 943 dedicated Pinterest boards.

20. Michigan, with 938 dedicated Pinterest boards.

To get the results, the folks at Money.co.uk counted the number of public Pinterest boards associated with several keywords related to weddings and popular U.S. and international destinations. Pinterest users created boards for locales ranging from tropical islands and beaches to bustling cities as well as a blend of coastal and landlocked states, while Colorado, Florida and Hawaii tied with 1,000 boards, respecively. The study also focused on current trends, with Harry Potter, vintage, earthy, natural and farm themed weddings taking the top five spots for themed weddings, as well as popular wedding dress styles and bridal bouquets.

If you’re planning a destination wedding, pay attention to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) travel guidelines—as of this writing, all international travelers need to provide negative Covid-19 test results before they’re allowed to re-enter the U.S., whether or not you’re fully vaccinated—and stay on top of local health and safety protocols regarding mask-wearing and social distancing wherever you go.

All details and policies mentioned were accurate as of press time.

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PINTEREST

Pinterest launches ‘You might just surprise yourself’ campaign

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Pinterest has partnered with creative agency, Droga5 to launch its latest campaign ‘You might just surprise yourself’, exploring how the platform can expand people’s interests in ways they never saw coming.

To kick things off, Pinterest has released a TV ad in the UK, managed by agency Media Hub. The integrated campaign will run across the US and UK including high impact out-of-home, along with audio, podcast, and provocative social ads.

Directed by Yann Demange, the campaign’s hero film ‘Discovery’ – filmed in Mexico City and Los Angeles – takes the audience on a fast-paced journey of exploration focusing on one woman’s discovery before branching out into an unbroken, energetic thread of other characters’ experiences. 

A series of 15 films take this premise further, exploring the surprising leaps and ways people can expand their interests. These include a home chef discovering the fusion of burgers and sushi and a teenager trying his hand at flame nail art.

To expand the campaign across all media channels, high-impact mural out-of-home installations have been commissioned in London, New York, Chicago, and LA, along with high-impact media placements and unique brand partnerships to reintroduce the brand and spark inspiration in new ways. 

Pinterest has formed its first ever partnership with CRWNMAG, a hair and lifestyle culture magazine for Black women and NTWRK, a mobile-first video shopping platform that seamlessly blends entertainment and commerce.

“People need a place to dream, to explore and to visualize their future. Pinterest is the open invitation to try something you’d never thought you’d try. Our campaign demonstrates that Pinterest is a place where you can find a never-ending array of surprises – a place where the more you explore, the more you discover,” said Director of Marketing for Europe at Pinterest, Louise Richardson. “We want to bring people the inspiration to create a life they love and often that means inspiring you to try something new and giving you the confidence to try more, whether you succeed and it’s beautiful or you fail and it’s hilarious.”

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