Audience participation! It’s the worst. It’s basically asking the audience to do your job. I AM SORRY THIS WILL MAKE THIS HOUR BETTER I PROMISE. Raise your hand if: You use Tumblr already You want to use Tumblr personally You’re wondering how to use Tumblr for your company or client
I started in 2008 because it was new and cool and the friend of a friend of a friend was dating David Karp and had some beta invites. Instagram didn’t exist and nobody I knew used Twitter so this is where I kept every single stupid thought that crossed my mind, and every single selfie before they were called selfies.
I’m a Tumblr Hoarder. WTF does that mean? It means when I have a good idea, or just an idea, my first order of business is to lock down the Tumblr URL. It’s my version of a copyright. Also, I have a lot of bad ideas.
I started this Tumblr in 2012, about 6 months after my boyfriend was diagnosed with a brain tumor, had brain surgery, was diagnosed with brain cancer, and became my husband. Initially, it was really just meant to be a way for me to remember all of these intense things that I was experiencing. Then, it became an outline for my first book (which I have about 2 months to finish) Tumblr really turned out to be the ideal platform for this unintentional experiment.
You have a lot of choices when you start a blog. Wordpress. Blogger. Medium. Squarespace Livejournal. Myspace. The notebook you keep under your bed. Those are all great choices. A Tumblr is (typically) a short-form blog, often characterized by tons of Gifs posted by emo teens. But (duh) you can use it for much more. Here’s why I think it’s special.
Tumblr is centralized on discovery. The user is predisposed to SOCIALIZE CONTENT. 1. Tumblr starts with your dashboard. Similarly to Twitter, you don’t need to write a thing in order to get use out of Tumblr. Accounts you follow show up here: it’s like your Facebook newsfeed, only filled with the interesting things you actually want to see. 2. Tags at the end of each post work just as they do in Twitter: you can search and discover new content this way. This is a key part of having your content discovered. If you’re in Tumblr right now, check that function out. 3. The currency of Facebook is a like: the Currency of Tumblr is a reblog. This is a way to collect content you love, and how your own content will be shared through Tumblr. GOOD CONTENT RULES ON TUMBLR. Your content isn’t consumed on your site, it’s consumed through the dashboard. Good content will find it’s audience through tagging and reblogs. 4.Tumblr plays well with other social networks. You can automatically tie your Tumblr to Facebook, Twitter. You can publish your instagram photos to Tumblr. Don’t get too carried away though, it’s annoying. 5. Inbox: Have a blog you love? You can send them a message directly. Want to solicit posts from other people? That’s a built-in function of Tumblr, those posts go here. 6. Radar: find what’s hot on Tumblr here (much of this is sponsored content, but still cool).
Seriously, if you want to set one up right now, it takes thirty seconds. I’ll wait. Just shout if you are doing it.
You don’t need to know a designer or a developer to get a pretty decent looking page set up. They’ve got plenty of great free themes, but if you want to put down $19-$49, you can get something specific to your needs (ecommerce, your band, your photography) They’re all customizable. It’s easy to add Google Analytics because you can easily customize the HTML.
Publishing is simple: you’ve got just 7 options, that automatically format for you. This means that if you want something to show up as just a quote, selecting that option makes it appear in the way you want it to appear in your followers’ feeds. Bonus: they have a Spotify and Soundcloud function built right in, so you can share your favorite music…legally. You can also publish to ANY of your blogs from this one page. You can track who follows you, and your most recent activity (who reblogged what) Tumblr Spotlight: the best content (or paid content) makes it to the top
Posting through the app is incredibly simple—and you can publish to any Tumblr with one login. Bonus: each tumblr has it’s own custom email address that creates a post.
I’m not alone in my obsession. Tumblr is just 6 years old, but it’s has an incredible trajectory. There are 26 tumblrs for every human in our state. You might want to double check my math on that but the point is: THAT IS A LOT OF TUMBLRS. Yahoo! Owns it – nice move, Marissa Meyer
Tumblr isn’t just a social network, it’s a social network that hold’s a user’s attention. Per visit, Tumblr engages users for longer periods of time than Facebook. http://mashable.com/2012/11/28/social-media-time/ http://mashable.com/2013/04/17/users-stay-longer-on-tumblr-than-facebook/
The average lifespan of a post on the following social networks is determined by the average length of time it takes for the content to fall out of users’ newsfeeds and stop being interacted with: http://socialmediatoday.com/laurenproctor/551673/lifespan-facebook-post-22-hours-and-51-minutes http://marketingland.com/your-facebook-posts-lifespan-may-be-shorter-than-you-think-50-of-post-reach-is-achieved-in-30-minutes-55720 http://moz.com/blog/when-is-my-tweets-prime-of-life
This post by the website Funny or Die generated over 14,000 notes (combined reblogs and likes) over the course of its life. Only 25% (3,500) of these notes occurred within the first 24 hours of the post’s life. Because Tumblr is a true blogging platform, it allows search engines to index content and show posts with relevant tags within search results, expanding our content’s impact beyond Tumblr users. 90% of my blog’s traffic comes through Google search (the saddest searches in the world). Tagging has connected my blog with a broader audience.
Before Pinterest and Instagram, I had Tumblr digitally scrapbook my entire life: what was I seeing, thinking, reading, listening to from 2008-the present? It’s all in here.
Find and follow your favorite memes. Laugh until you cry in public.
Tumblr is FULL of inspiration. Plenty of your favorite Pinterest pins probably started here.
Tumblr makes collaboration EASY Add multiple users to a blog Use the built in submit function – just check the box Use the email address to let other people post on the fly This started out as a funny list of posts. Now it’s a book in more than one country. My version of this was a dating site called RedFlags.tumblr.com where my friends and I could share all their worst dating stories. Some are really, really bad. But we don’t have a book yet.
Before you judge me, this is password protected. Also, any one of our family members can submit a photo, video or note about their time with Ralph directly from their phones. As a result, we have a pretty comprehensive record of the high points of his time on earth.
We had kind of a whirlwind wedding, but I still wouldn’t change the way we did this: We embedded a google form for RSVPs. Ustream was embedded so anyone who couldn’t make the wedding could watch it live It took under a half hour to get all of these details set up.
When I have a funny idea, or really any idea, I make a Tumblr for it. This is babyglares.tumblr.com – it’s, ya know, pictures of babies glaring at you. WHICH THEY DO ALL THE TIME! If I were smarter, I would have thought of Rich Kids of Instagram
This is the t-shirt my husband was wearing when he had a seizure that eventually revealed his brain tumor. Eventually, this little tumblr is going to sell this t-shirt.
Sure, if you’re lucky. You’ll see Google Adsense on some of the more popular Tumblrs, and a significant number of the most popular Tumblrs have become those “books” that people usually keep somewhere near their toilet. If I knew how to get rich of Tumblr, I’d be rich already.
Beautiful images do really well on Tumblr – publishers of beautiful images got hip to the Tumblr game and made their own. National Geographic’s Nat Geo Found posts long-lost images, that you can actually buy. It’s a real treat to see what their posts will be. The Life and Time magazine Tumblrs are also treasures: beautiful, iconic photography
Target Style and J.Crew are just two examples of brands whose company blogs are hosted via Tumblr. Target: puts together magazine-worthy beauty + fashion content Jcrew: digital version of their catalogue/style guide. Feels very editorial Betty Crocker: BettysFamily.tumblr.com Coca Cola fun, on-brand content BMWUSA insidery
Trolli makes gummy candy. Their new broadcast pieces are pretty nuts, but the weirdess translates really well on tumblr. Why? Because good content will find it’s audience.
Did anyone go to the Tumblr MIMA event this past winter? Their ad model is different, in that the content you produce is your ad unit. You’re not making something different just to post as a Tumblr ad. Your content is meant to be promoted it self. Tumblr Radar brings the hottest parts of Tumblr to the sidebar in your dashboard. Brands can pay to get into this spot. Same with the spotlight area, which is a directory of the most enlightening parts of Tumblr. Big shift from buying ad space to drive OFF the platform to your site. You’re paying for your content to be a part of the consciousness, for brand affinity, not for clickthroughs to purchase. That makes sense for some brands.
I’ll Tumblr for ya.
Oh my golly I regret this title.
Nora McInerny Purmort
Senior Manager, Social Media
Life Time Fitness
I’m very tall
*Confident guesstimate, not actual math.
Founded by David Karp
Ranking by Quancast
Tumblrs in existence.
Of your favorite memes
come from Tumblr
It’s a rabbit hole.
In a good way.
•Facebook – 10.1 minutes (6.75
•Tumblr – 14 minutes (1.5 hours/month)
•Twitter – 2.8 minutes (21 min/month)
Your content has a longer
•Facebook = 22 hours, 51 minutes
•Tumblr = Posts can live for days, weeks
or months thanks to tagging and
•Twitter = 18 minutes
• The “reblog” action in Tumblr
creates additional posts around one
piece of content
• Search engine indexing surfaces
posts with relevant tags within search
results, so your content goes beyond
What would I do with a Tumblr?
Oh my goodness, so many things!
Could we buy ad space?
Nora’s hot Tumblr tips.
• Tumblr is only as good as the Tumblrs
• Tag. Tag. Tag. Tag. Tag.
• Search and connect. Send fan mail.
Reply and reblog.
• Open the “submit” and “ask me”
sections to let people connect with you.
• Want your Tumblr to be bloggier?
– Installing Disqus comments is easy
– Code is available for Pinterest, Facebook and