On 10 July 2020, Pinterest published a comprehensive overview of its newest algorithm update and how it controls and balances out the content that appears on the home feeds of users. Instead of purely relying on user engagement, Pinterest will now be showing a more diverse range of content.
This a fresh take on Pinterest’s algorithm distribution. It is all in the name of making Pinterest more diverse and user-friendly. This is what Yaron Greif, Pinterest engineer, had to say about the new changes:
“Every day millions of Pinners visit the home feed to find inspiration on Pinterest. As a member of the home feed ranking team, it’s my job to not only figure out what relevant pins to show Pinners but also to make sure that those Pins will help maintain the health of the overall Pinterest ecosystem. For instance, relative to ranking just for relevance, we might display more newly-created Pins to ensure our corpus doesn’t become stale, or more video Pins to surface actionable ideas from creators.”
Now, Pinterest will not only display content that users have already shown an interest in, but it will also be highlighting and recommending other types of content.
For starters, more video content would be shown to encourage more creators to create their own. Video content generally gets more engagement, and the new update means that videos will be given a boost. Content creators must now consider different types of content to maximize their reach on Pinterest.
Pinterest calls this new system “controllable distribution” which “replaces those hard-coded constants with a system where business owners can specify a global target for the percentage of impressions by content type.” This means that the system will be looking for ways to maximize the showing of different types of content while respecting individual users’ preferences.
This new update will not only diversify news feed content but will also highlight creator representation across the platform. Pinterest does this in response to #BlackLivesMatter protests which, among other things, calls for the equal representation of black creators in all platforms.
It will enable Pinterest to highlight different types of content without largely impacting the experience of users across the platform.
Implications for Marketers:
Marketers would need to reassess their approach for digital marketing across Pinterest. The diversification of the feeds would provide more opportunity to experiment and test out how new types of content would do. Marketers can use this new update to their advantage to reach both users that are part of their target market and users that are not on their target market.