Wednesday, November 12, 2014

Rise of Pinterest: The Freelancer Fast 50

SYDNEY, Australia: Connecting with eCommerce and a focus on original visual content has become critical for Social Platforms as we deep-dive into Pinterest’s meteoric rise in the social market; this demand for original content delivers a surge in creative and content jobs; Apple breaks what appeared to be Android’s unshakeable dominance with the launch of the iPhone 6;and Microsoft appears set for a resurgence; as everyone is left asking, “What has happened to eBay? What will we expect to see from Alibaba?” This quarter’s Fast 50 has seen data scientists review 295,259 online jobs showcasing the global trends affecting businesses and pulling apart what is driving their budget decisions. The Q3 results have been dominated by massive increases in Social Media jobs, up a collective 63% on Q2. A plethora of product releases pitched squarely at eCommerce advertisers, including an expansion of the long-awaited Promoted Pins, has seen Pinterest jobs skyrocket. Meanwhile, the launch of the Apple iPhone 6 has finally ended 7 consecutive quarters of Android dominance - but will it last?“In business and technology, it is common to see the underdogs suddenly rise up and knock the incumbent out of the top spot which, in turn, shakes up the industry and changes consumer perceptions and the business landscape. This Fast 50 shows Pinterest, Apple, Microsoft and Alibaba all making moves, some game changing and disruptive, jostling for a top position. As a result, business owners are changing perceptions and shifting where and how they invest to grow their businesses,” CEO Matt Barrie remarked.

Pinterest’s meteoric rise is shaking up social networks and what they mean for business. The visual bookmarking platform is finally making moves to monetize through the expansion of Promoted Pins, and the results have been astounding - a massive 1065% increase to 1480 in related jobs, as eCommerce advertisers see encouraging results. Key product releases in the last few months, pitched squarely at small business advertisers, include an overhaul of their analytics platform, self-service ads, a news tab to push out fresh content, search-prioritized Rich Pins and more.What started out as a platform many critics dismissed as an unremarkable site for scrapbooking has managed to build itself up into one of, if not the major player in the social media arena. While Pinterest’s user count is relatively low at 70 million, its user base hits a lucrative niche - 80% of Pinterest’s user base are women. But the secret sauce that has advertisers salivating is engagement of its user base - the average Pinterest user spends 98 minutes per month on the platform. Drilling down the stats even further, the numbers grow to astronomical proportions. Pinterest users have created more than 750 million boards which include more than 30 billion individual pins, with a staggering 54 million new pins being added each day. If you needed any more convincing of Pinterest’s power, during the holiday season in 2013, Pinterest accounted for nearly a quarter of all social sharing activity. Pinterest is second only to Facebook among social networks when it comes to driving traffic to websites. They’ve also just hired one of Google’s high profile media partnership managers, Robert Macdonald and have ex Facebook’s Director of Monetization (2006-2010) Tim Kendall on board. Kendall, a key figure in Facebook’s highly successful monetisation strategy, has bullishly claimed Pinterest will be bigger than Facebook and Google. We expect the amount of Pinterest-related work, from image production, to ads, to community cultivation to be a mainstay in the Fast 50 for many years to come. Google+ has also enjoyed a dramatic resurgence, increasing 532% from 269 jobs to 1699 jobs this quarter and Google AdWords has had a smaller yet still significant increase of 22% to 1238 jobs. This is related to the release of their Partner Playbook that acts as a best practice reference for their ‘partners’ to get a lot more engagement using Google’s platforms. And 2856 jobs respectively, and Android is up 9.1%. What is certain from this is that the race is still close. With Apple clearly following trends set by Samsung, HTC and friends, it indicates that consumers are potentially going to be a lot less loyal to one platform and they may shift as new hardware is released.
Is Microsoft set for a resurgence? It seems like the Microsoft stack is really heating up. Both SQL Server and are up by 259% and 179% to 1076 and 1935 jobs respectively. Has the appointment of new Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella, with his focus on cloud computing, reinvigorated the company seen by many developers and consumers alike as old-fashioned and out of touch? In July 2014, he sent around an internal memo detailing his vision for the company’s future, highlighting his vision for a Microsoft that focuses on “Productivity and Platforms” – is his vision starting to take hold?What has happened to eBay? Alibaba? Is the online trading powerhouse feeling the pressure after Alibaba’s strong debut? With the dust still settling after the record-breaking Alibaba IPO, eBay has announced that they are spinning off PayPal debt-free. At the same time, eBay jobs on have dropped 14% this quarter. Does eBay have structural or brand problems? Has eBay stopped innovating? Is the eCommerce titan about to hit an iceberg, with PayPal fleeing in a lifeboat?Alibaba’s IPO has formalised the rise of a new eCommerce titan and presented a stark challenge to incumbents eBay and Amazon. Stay tuned - 2015 could herald one of the greatest business battles in history. Can eBay survive the Crocodile on the Yangtze and The Everything Store?

About Freelancer®
Quadruple Webby award-winning is the world’s largest freelancing and crowdsourcing marketplace by total number of users and projects posted. Over 13.6 million registered users have posted 6.6 million projects and contests to date in over 700 areas as diverse as website development, logo design, marketing, copywriting, astrophysics, aerospace engineering and manufacturing. Freelancer Limited is listed on the Australian Securities Exchange under the ticker ASX:FLN.

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