Recently I’ve been playing around with Tumblr – a social blogging platform — to experience what it’s all about.
I like to think of Tumblr as a love child between Twitter and WordPress. It’s just hilariously easy to set up and start blogging. Tumblr is also a platform where posting frequently – like you do on Twitter – is acceptable. This is after all a platform where short form posts are the norm.
Unlike WordPress, Tumblr is a social network that allows you to follow other blogs, like other posts and reblog interesting content. Your Tumblr blog is also hosted on their servers, and customisation options are limited compared to what you might be used to on WordPress. Sure you can change the theme, but that’s about it.
Publishing on Tumblr
When you first login and see your dashboard, you’ll immediately notice the different forms of posts you can publish.
By looking at the publishing options it becomes clears that Tumblr is not a place to write anything north of 400 words. It’s not forbidden, but when you start following other blogs you’ll see that short posts and visuals are the way to go here.
Building an Audience on Tumblr
Tumblr is a social network, which means you can follow others, and people can follow you back. You also have the chance to Like and Reblog interesting content, similar to Twitter’s Retweet and Favorites.
In order to get those Reblogs, you need to Tag your posts appropriately. That’s essentially how to build an audience on Tumblr, because tags are what people use to discover new content on a certain topic.
How Can Startups Use Tumblr
But because your blog is hosted on Tumblr’s servers, there will always be a chance that they might go down. Making your blog inaccessible at time. Paul Stamatiou goes into more detail about why you should avoid Tumblr in this blog post.
Nevertheless, you can still use Tumblr as something supplementary to your main blog if you like.
Say you’re pushing out at least one lengthy blog post on your WordPress blog. And one day you find a post you want to share and comment on, but not go into too much detail and ask others what they think. In that case you can use Tumblr to publish a link post and attach your thoughts to it.
Another example is how Twitter uses it for sharing company news (see Twitter).
Generally whatever you publish on Google+ and Facebook can be used on Tumblr. The advantage here is that you reach a different audience.
So, is Tumblr right for my business?
I’m afraid you can only answer that question. But to get you started, you can check out some statistics I gathered for a blog I did for Cuutio, see Which Social Network Is Right For Your Business