Diving into the Pinterest earning reports is a great way to find out about the health of the company, future direction hints and more.
Stock reports aren’t that fun to read, but you do get a little sneak peek into where the company is headed and what their goals are.
Before we dive in, let’s set a reminder of Pinterest’s mission:
Our mission is to bring everyone the inspiration to create a life they love
Opening words from the Pinterest Q4 earnings report:
“Pinterest is where over 400 million people around the world go to get inspiration to live their best lives. They come to discover and bring to life ideas for their daily activities like cooking dinner or deciding what to wear; for major commitments like remodeling a house or training for a marathon; for ongoing passions like gardening or fashion; and for milestone events like planning a wedding or a dream vacation.
Our users (who we call Pinners) often don’t have the words to describe what they want, but they know it when they see it. Images and video can communicate concepts that are impossible to describe with words.
On Pinterest, people discover inspiring and personalized visual content, which we call Pins. Pins are created when Pinners, creators and businesses make new content for or save existing web content to our platform. Pins are saved and organized into collections, which we call boards and sections. Browsing and saving visual ideas on our service helps Pinners imagine what their future could look like, which propels them from inspiration to action. Pinterest is the productivity tool for planning your dreams.
Dreaming and productivity may seem like polar opposites, but on Pinterest, inspiration enables action and dreams become reality. Visualizing the future helps bring it to life. In this way, Pinterest is unique. Most consumer internet companies are either tools (search, ecommerce) or media (newsfeeds, video, social networks). Pinterest is not a pure media channel; it is a mediarich utility.
Pinterest is also unique because we’ve designed it to be an inspiring platform, that we foster through our policies and product development — for example, Pinterest has banned political and weight loss ads, developed inclusive beauty search functionality and launched compassionate search for Pinners seeking mental health support.
This work is foundational to our mission because we believe people are less likely to imagine their future and bring it to life when they feel self-conscious, excluded, or unhappy. It also creates value for businesses and brands on the platform (including our advertising partners), who have the opportunity to showcase their products and services in an inspiring environment that we believe is conducive to building an emotional connection with consumers.
Pinners can choose between two different Home Feed experiences: Browse or Watch. The “Browse” tab is Pinterest’s traditional inspiration feed (consisting of a two column grid featuring a variety of Standard, Video, Product and Idea Pins), while the “Watch” tab is an immersive feed of full-screen, auto-playing Idea Pins.”
Okay, we’ve set the stage for the investors to understand what Pinterest is.
Next came the…
Letter to Shareholders – basically a pretty slideshow to get the investors excited
A summary of what’s included:
- Highlights from Pinterest Predicts 2022
- Categories of who Pinterest sees in their audience – Advertisers, Creators, and Pinners
- A push for creators to create Pinterest TV
- Creator highlight – Oyin Edogi of the blog SweetLikeOyin (part of the first cohort of the Creator Fund, a new program to elevate creators from underrepresented communities)
- Financial highlights from 2021 – Q4 revenue grew 20% YOY to $847 million!
- 2021 review and goals for 2022
2021 Review from the Q4 Pinterest Earnings Report
In a quick summary, Pinterest focused heavily on creator-led content and video. They built the tools inside the platform for creating and publishing short-form video by creators. Product launches included the Watch tab, Takes and Pinterest TV.
They also made important investments in shopping, expanding to 13 international markets and making it easier for Pinners to shop right within the app. They also tried to make it easier for merchants to upload their catalogs and started piloting a seamless checkout process, which they’re hoping to evolve in 2022.
They also launched the beta for Creator Rewards, a program designed for creators to earn money for developing original Idea Pins.
However, 2021 also brought some challenges to the platform. As pandemic restrictions eased, people began doing more things outside their homes and spending less time at home, which they believe led to lower engagement in some cases.
I thought it was really interesting that they noted this about seasonality:
“We have historically experienced seasonality in user growth, engagement and monetization on our platform. Historically, we have had lower engagement in the second calendar quarter and industry advertising spend tends to be strongest in the fourth quarter. We did not experience typical seasonal trends in 2020 and 2021 due to the COVID-19 pandemic. We do not know when we will return to our typical seasonal trends in the future.”
2022 Goals from the Q4 Pinterest Earnings Report
As we have seen coming, they expect to scale the distribution of Idea Pins! They also want to continue developing a more personalized, full shopping experience, as well as helping merchants find the “right” buyers who are ready to purchase.
They want to focus on improving the efficiency of their ads marketplace and are planning to make investments that will provide more value to mid-size and small, managed advertisers.
They’re also working hard to make Pinterest a positive platform on the Internet. They plan to continue to invest in content safety and aim to build publishing tools that focus on inspiration rather than social comparison.
This is the super long 10-K report. It’s about 162 pages. Not light reading and perfectly suited for your nighttime sleep aid. It’s a lot. And a lot of legal jargon.
After all that, here’s what I think Pinterest wants:
- To compete with the short form video of the world (think Instagram Reels, TikTok, etc)
- More creators to create ON the platform
- More advertisers to see the advantage in using Pinterest
Will all this happen? Not sure.
Let us know what you think about this recap of the report by sending us a DM on Instagram (@simplepinmedia). We’d love to hear your thoughts and feedback!
In the meantime, keep using Pinterest to grow your business.