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Pinterest brings its visual discovery tech to advertising

Tyrone Stewart

Pinterest visual searchPinterest has used the visual discovery technology that it showed off in February, with the launch of its Lens, Instant Ideas and Shop the Look features, to bring visual search to advertising.

The photo-sharing platform will bring Promoted Pins to the ‘over 250m visual searches a month’ it sees. When a user spots a product they like the look of and runs it through an image search, Pinterest’s machine learning technology identifies the object and shows the user similar products.

Now, these similar products will also include relevant Promoted Pins – meaning the user can have the opportunity to purchase the product at a time when it is at the forefront of their thinking.  

When a potential customer spots a table they like the looks of on Pinterest, visual discovery helps us recognize the style, textures and shapes that make it unique,” said Umesh Unnikrishnan, head of product for search ads at Pinterest, in a blog post. “We can identify it as a “rectangular, mid-century modern dining table,” and show similar products that match the look and feel.

“We help people find your ads in the very same way, connecting people to products they like the looks of, but don’t quite have the vocabulary to describe.”

In addition to Promoted Pins arriving in visual search, they will also now show up in Instant Ideas and amongst the related Pins in the ‘more like this’ section.