Even though Tumblr isn’t as desirable to marketers and business owners, it does not change the fact that Tumblr is a huge social media player, with more than 420 million users. However, Tumblr can be more difficult to work with than other social networks like Facebook or Twitter . Tumblr is primarily populated by millennials and has a strong sense of community that focuses on humor, social justice and artsy content. Businesses who are looking to create a Tumblr account for their brand need to make sure that they are a good fit for the platform, and avoid simple mistakes that can make your followers angry and lead to wasted time, effort, and money.
Here are a few of the most common guidelines to live by if you plan to market your company on Tumblr.
1. Don’t forget about the community.
One of the biggest mistakes businesses make is not understanding the voice of the Tumblr community. Tumblr is a highly visual and inspirational platform, with a hefty dose of humor and snark. We see a lot of companies posting content that’s too brand specific and very promotional, thus resulting in minimal (almost non existant) follower engagement. Our recommendation is that business owners take a while to observe what’s working and what’s not, spot trends, and learn which type of content performs well. Based on that data create your campaigns around what you have learned, and you should see a positive impact resulting in higher engagement rates.
2. Avoid auto posting your content from other platforms or third-party apps.
Probably the biggest mistakes we see businesses make on Tumblr is that they’re posting to it just to simply have a presence on it. Quantity over quality mentality is a huge mistake that business can make across all social media platforms, but is seems that Tumblr gets the majority of the “we don’t care” auto posts. When you’re posting content via third-party apps or simply reposting something that was originally shared on another social platform you’re offering your followers no real benefit. Remember, followers are people too. Before you post new content ask yourself “is this something related to my users, and would I enjoy reading it.?”
3. Reblogging is a good thing.
The biggest mistake committed on Tumblr, as we tell all our clients, is using the platform in a selfish way by just posting your own content. Do not forget that Tumblr’s key point of difference is the reblogging feature. You can get away with a strict output strategy on platforms such as Facebook, Instagram and Twitter, but this will not work with Tumblr. Any brand, company or business that just posts things will be most likely ignored by the community. Reblogging things creates friends, and lasting relationships between other followers who may return the favor by reblogging your content on their accounts.
4. Don’t post about current news.
Tumblr isn’t a go-to news source for readers, as followers are usually engaged by interesting, funny and colorful content versus some boring CNN news story. Companies can succeed by getting their information out using insightful and well designed infographics, and then linking to their desired news story. This way you provide the best of both worlds, you create insightful content for the viewers, and users who wish to read more will follow through to your site, thus increasing your organic traffic.
5. Using trending topics the wrong way.
To keep it simple, keep your brand or company from conversations you don’t understand. This usually happens when a social media managers use hashtags in a funny way without fully researching the conversation taking place around that particular tag. Tumblr is a platform known for a high level of social activism. The users are mostly young, passionate people, who care about current social issues and use hashtags to bring in more users into the conversation. If you use the wrong tags, you will basically end up looking like a fool, and that isn’t a good image for a company who wishes to acquire new customers.
6. Keep it clean and don’t share anything offensive.
Remember that Tumblr posts last forever. Yes, you can delete your own posts after the fact, but you absolutely cannot delete any reblogs from followers or other users. This is why you need to steer clear of offensive humor that may jeopardize your company’s reputation. Carefully analyze the different ways a message could be interpreted, because even the most well intentioned updates can backfire in a horrible way.
7. Hashtags are not to be overused.
Don’t overlook hashtags, but don’t spam them either. Usually the sweet spot is 5 to 6 hashtags, because spamming your audience with too many tags will turn them off forever when they realize that all you’re doing is seeking attention for your company. Remember, people are following your brand to get access to valuable, relevant, interesting, funny, informative content. Don’t give them any reason to doubt that relationship. Happy followers will return the favor by becoming your long time customers.