Pinterest is stepping up its efforts to lure influencers to its platform with a new set of Instagram-like features. The company is introducing two new features for creators who want to have a more permanent presence on the platform: Story Pins, its version of Stories, and “creator profiles,” which allow influencers to show off their work.
Story Pins, which is available now to a select group of creators, look a lot like Stories on other platforms. Users can post photos and vertical videos with overlaid text and voice-over narration. But unlike other types of pins, Story Pins don’t need to link back to an outside website. But unlike Stories on other platforms, Pinterest’s version isn’t ephemeral.
Likewise, creator profiles allow influencers to highlight their projects — via Story Pins — not just the content they've already pinned. And users who follow creators can comment and react to their stories.
Despite being one of the last social platforms without a dedicated space for vertical video, it makes sense that Pinterest would want to adopt the format. Many of the creative endeavors people most associate with Pinterest — recipes, crafting, decorating — lend themselves to casual, first-person video. For example, a food blogger may want to offer a behind-the-scenes look at their latest recipe, while a fitness buff may want to show off a workout.
At the same time, it’s difficult to imagine that influencers would choose Pinterest over YouTube (where they can monetize their videos directly), Instagram (where their following is more established) or TikTok (where the right clip can go viral much more quickly with the help of the app’s algorithm).
But Story Pins could offer a boost to creators who are already established in their niche. Though the company for now isn’t offering monetization tools directly, Story Pins comes with analytics, in case a creator wants to strike their own brand deal, and allows them to direct traffic back to a blog or online shop.
What’s not yet clear is if or when Pinterest plans to make the feature available to all its users, not just the “creators” who can attract a bigger audience. The company has historically taken a more cautious approach when it comes to misinformation and other issues so the slow rollout isn’t much of a surprise.