Everyone has heard of Facebook and Twitter, but for some reason Tumblr is often overlooked. However, if you are looking to promote content online, you need to start taking more notice of Tumblr because there are loads of SEO benefits in using Tumblr as a Social Media platform.
How Does Tumblr Work?
Tumblr is a network of millions of user-generated, personal Web sites. It's part blogging platform (like Wordpress, Blogger or Posterous) and part social networking service, letting users create and post their own original content. Written entries, photographs, video clips or links to other Web sites -- you can share all of these things with your friends and followers. Users subscribe to as many other users' pages as they like, which show up on the user's feed, or Dashboard. It's also possible to give "notes" to other subscribers in several forms -- you can reblog someone's content on that user's Tumblr site, "like" it, or reply. To further the social aspect, authors can opt to post their Tumblr entries simultaneously, or at least link to them, via other services, such as Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.
Tumblr refers to itself as a platform for short-form microblogging, also known as tumblelogging, a name that predates Tumblr itself. As of 2012, Tumblr hosts more than 64 million "tumblelogs." More than 13 million people visit Tumblr a month, most of them with their own active blogs. Each day, 25,000 new users sign up for the site, and altogether, 71.6 million new Tumblr blog entries, photos, videos and audio files are posted each day. Although you don't have to be a registered user of Tumblr to read others people's Tumblr blogs, you do have to be registered.
How to Use Tumblr?
Tumblr is a microblogging service that has recently become one of the foremost social mediasites on the Internet. If you're interested in learning how to use Tumblr but you don't know where to begin, simply follow the steps outlined in this article and you'll soon be on the fast track to being Tumblr famous.
- Go to Tumblr to sign up for an account. You will need to choose a username, which will act as your display name on the Tumblr dashboard, as well as part of the URL of your blog ("yourusername" dot tumblr dot com). Your username is not permanent, however; you may change it at any time by going to your blog settings.
- Get to know the seven different types of posts. These types are varied to allow your best approaches to be put forward; you may even like to try each style over time. The seven types of posts are as follows:
--Text. A text post consists of plain text. Images, hyperlinks, videos, and some HTML-based widgets can be added. The raw HTML of the post can be edited.
-- Photo. A photo post consists of a single image accompanied by a brief description. Photos can be uploaded from your PC, or you can use the URL of an image already on the web.
--Quote. A quote post consists of title text (the quote) and a single line of body text (citing the origin of the quote).
-- Link. A link post consists entirely of a single piece of descriptive text, which is linked to the website or webpage being described.
--Chat. A chat post is used to share a snippet of conversation.
--Audio. An audio post consists of a single .mp3 file (be it a music track, podcast, etc.), which can be played via a Flash music player. Only one audio post is permitted daily.
--Video. A video post consists of an embedded video, which can be uploaded from your PC or imported from websites such as YouTube or Vimeo.
What Are the Benefits of Using Tumblr?
- Follow people and get your own followers. Followers are fellow Tumblr users who subscribe to your blog. Whatever you post will appear on their dashboard. When you follow other Tumblr users, their posts will then appear on your dashboard. If a person you don't want following you does so, you can block them. The more followers you get, the more chance you have of getting your posts reblogged and liked.
- Like and reblog. If someone likes your post so much that they want to share it, they can reblog it. If someone reblogs one of your posts, their followers will see it on their dashboards. If someone doesn't want to reblog your post, they can 'like' your post. You can reblog and like the posts of others. All posts are rated with the "notes" they get. With each 'reblog' and 'like,' the posts increment one note.
- Understand messages. If you allow access to your Ask box, you can receive questions from anyone who uses Tumblr, as well as anonymous visitors. Your answers to these questions will be posted to your blog, for all of your followers and visitors to see. You can also send fan mail, which is similar to asking or submitting something to someone, but more focused on giving positive comments to another person about their blog.
- Queuing and drafts. If you wish to publish a string of posts while you're offline, you can add the posts to your queue and choose at which intervals of time they'll be published (for example, every 15 minutes). Alternatively, you can appoint a certain time at which the posts are published, including date and time. These features are helpful if you're going on holiday and still want to blog, but won't have an Internet connection during your vacation. Drafts, meanwhile, allow you to save a post online; you can then finish the post when you next log onto Tumblr and publish it whenever you wish.
- Customize your Tumblr. The Customize page gives you access to all of the under-the-hood settings for your blog and is split into several sections.
- Post your own original content. To optimize the quality of your posts, ensure that text is well-written, images are relevant, and you keep to the theme of your blog, if you have one. The most popular Tumblr users are those who dedicate their blogs to a certain purpose. Add relevant tags to your posts, so that users searching for a certain topic are more likely to stumble upon your blog. It's also a good idea to cite the sources of things you did not write/create, or you'll be accused of plagiarizing. To protect yourself from plagiarism, type the URL of your own blog in the 'Source' box on the sidebar of the post composition page. Ensure that your material is interesting, and post at least once a day, or your followers will get bored with your inactivity and may even unfollow you.
The main benefit of Tumblr is that it is really easy to use. It does not require that you have any technical skills in order to be able to start blogging. It has a very easy user interface that most people can figure out in a matter of minutes at which point all you have to do is start writing whatever you want on your blog. One of the other benefits is that unlike most other blogging sites they don't worry too much about the length of your posts so if you want to have a post that is just a couple of sentences long that is an option.
Another huge benefit of using Tumblr is that you can customize it to meet your needs. One of the problems with most blogging sites is that you have no choice over how the blog looks. If you are using the blog for business you are going to want it to look similar to your website, this is something that you can do with Tumblr. Even more importantly you can have a custom domain on Tumblr which means that you are not required to use one of those awkward subdomains that you have to use on most other blogging sites. You can have a domain that people will remember and associate with your company.
Tumblr also offers the huge advantage of having a built in source of traffic. It is not just a blogging site but it is a whole community. That means that people will go to their home page and use it as a way to find blogs that they are interested in. This will really help to bring in a lot of traffic that you would otherwise not get. In addition because of all the links that will point at your blog from the other pages on Tumblr you will find that your blog tends to rank a lot better in the search engines which brings in even more traffic.
The last benefit of Tumbler is that it is free. While this should not be the main concern if you are using it for your business it is something to consider. Most companies when they start online marketing find that they need dozens of different sites and the cost really starts to add up. Being able to have a presence on a site that gets a lot of traffic and not having to pay for it is certainly beneficial for most businesses.
What Type of Content Does Well on Tumblr?
You can post all kinds of content on Tumblr, but there are some types of content that do better than others. Despite Tumblr’s popularity, content marketers need to carefully consider certain issues prior to incorporating Tumblr into their content marketing strategy. Your target audience (or at least an economically viable segment) should already be using Tumblr in order to establish meaningful engagement. And though brands may be able to repurpose existing material for use on this platform, providing the type of content this audience wants is no easy task. But, as a general rule, visually appealing and easily consumed content performs best with this audience; thus, content formats that involve photography, design, and other creative endeavors typically do well.
Before building your branded content strategy for Tumblr, get a feeling for what works by visiting some popular Tumblr blogs. The 100 Best Tumblrs of All Time, 30 Must-See Tumblr Blogs, and The Best Tumblr Blogs of 2011 provide a good overview. You’ll notice content that is short and sweet generally works best. While there is quite a bit of original content on the platform, plenty of Tumblrs reblog other people’s content, often adding their own opinions to give it a unique perspective, which makes it an excellent vehicle for putting your brand’s spin on relevant, curated content that will appeal to your audience.