Can You Use Tumblr to Market Effectively?

One of the biggest internet buyout of the past year was Yahoo!’s acquisition of Tumblr. What they plan to do with the social media site is hard to guess, but it has obviously caused a lot of conversation about the site and what it means to the online businesses who market there. Much of the conversation about the sale turned to how online markets could use the site. In the past year or so since the sale was made, things have changed for the site. That is simply a normal course of action with any company that gets bought up bay a larger company. Some things are bound to change. That leaves many online marketers wondering if anything has changed in regards to Tumblr being a decent marketing tool. It’s a valid question when there are already plenty of other social media sites calling for your attention due to how useful they are to online marketing. So let’s take a look and see how Tumblr works for businesses as a means to promote their products.

First of all, what would you say Tumblr is for? If you ask many different people you might get a few different responses. These are likely to include:

  • A free site for blogging
  • A means for people to post things they don’t fully understand just to show how cool they are
  • Where people upload pictures of their food
  • A place where gifs and memes are regularly dumped
  • A hive of negativity where posts are routinely destroyed

While all these have some semblance of truth to them, the reality is much more complex. Tumbler is a lot of things to a lot of people, and that means that its use varies from company to company, especially if that company is seeking to use it as marketing tool.

Now many companies will tell you that Tumblr isn’t professional enough for their purposes, but that’s not a stance that will be healthy for every company to adopt. For many, Tumblr still serves a particular marketing purpose, and it would be a shame to waste it.

There are actually a number of different companies who use Tumblr successfully to promote their products and make their brand more visible. These include Audi, Calvin Klein, Target, eBay and more. What gets these companies excited about marketing on Tumblr is the way it appeals to the under-25 demographic. Those who have been disappointed or disillusioned by Facebook and other social media sites are heading to Tumblr to find something different. Some users make use of multiple social media sites, including Tumblr, to connect with their network of friends.

Tumblr has transformed from a niche site into the largest blogging platform on the web. There, popularity is based on which community you are a part of, and communities are tied together by the things they like.

What Purpose Does Tumblr Serve?

All this may still leave you wondering what the purpose of Tumblr is and how it fits into the social media channel paradigm. It manages to offer something that feels like a cross between Pinterest, Facebook and WordPress. It has all the sharing options of major social media sites while allowing you to blog in a bigger and more robust way than many of those sites permit. On top of that, it appeals to visual people by making images one of its primary focuses. Where hashtags have become ways to find content that is related to one another through Facebook and Twitter, they don’t actually work on Tumblr. Instead, users have to find like-minded people by searching for content they enjoy. How the Site Affects Marketers There are thousands of new users signing up for the site each day, which opens up a wealth of customers for marketers to reach. There are few platforms growing as fast. This is really only the beginning.

Some statistics show Tumblr is achieving impressive member numbers, huge daily traffic, and is a hit among users with a college education. That’s a key demographic for marketers, as they are the most likely to have spending money. Perhaps most impressive of all is that the vast majority of the site’s users are accessing the site from home. That is the ideal spot for marketers to reach them since they have more time to spend on the site there. Statistics also show that once content lands on Tumblr, its lifespan greatly increases.

Will It Prove Useful for Your Company?

While Tumblr does have plenty of features to boast about, each company does have to consider if adding another social media platform to their marketing efforts is worth the trouble. Here is how you can determine if Tumblr is right for your business. If you think you can do well on Pinterest, then you can do just as well on Tumblr. You can use images of your company, products or services to promote what you do and reach a larger audience. If you need to reach out and affect a larger demographic, Tumblr may be the perfect place to do that as well. You can use the site to share things you might not share elsewhere, so if you have some products you aren’t getting leads from in other places, you may want to try them there. Just make sure that if you do make the move to Tumblr that you do it the right way. You can’t treat it like every other marketing effort online. You have to tailor your marketing content for the site and its key demographic.

Keep in mind that you don’t have to appeal to everyone on Tumblr. There is actually a diverse group of people, since millions use it. So find what works for your company on the site instead of going for the broadest possible appeal. Also try to appeal to people as a person and not as a company. This is a social media site, and people are looking to network and find friends with common interests there. Present yourself in that way, and you are bound to be far more successful than if you are just shilling a product.