Apr 08 The Best Brands to Follow on Tumblr
Tumblr—it’s the often overlooked microblogging platform that made headlines in 2013 after Yahoo! acquired it for approximately $1.1 billion. With 226 million blogs, 460 million monthly visitors, and a highly active and young user base creating engaging content on a daily basis, it’s no wonder Buzzfeed can’t keep its hands off of Tumblr (as seen in the chart below, provided by Priceonomics.com).
Tumblr’s wide appeal is unmistakable, and its potential for creating viral content is only growing. Because of this, marketers are eager to hop on the bandwagon in order to reach these coveted younger audiences. But which brands have crafted successful blogs that stand out from the crowd on Tumblr? Here are some of the best ones that you should be following:
AT&T’s The Mobile Movement: http://themobilemovement.tumblr.com/
In an unlikely partnership between AT&T and Vice Media, The Mobile Movement is a video campaign that highlights the central role that smartphones play in millennials’ everyday lives. The Mobile Movement has its own Tumblr, which is divided into various categories like #tbt, #mobilelove, #mobilelife, and #textart. The branding in posts is subtle and at times almost non-existent—usually, it is only a post’s tags that reveal it is an AT&T/Mobile Movement initiative. The blog is quirky, fun, and full of gifs and emojis that focus on the intertwining of our lives and smartphone technology that resonates with all of us, making it the perfect fit for Tumblr’s younger demographic.
Nike Women: http://nikewomen.tumblr.com/
While it’s barely a month old, Nike Women has taken to Tumblr and hit the ground running (pun intended). With an array of vibrant gifs, colorful photos of neatly organized tennis shoes and other “fitspirational” posts, Nike Women is strategically appealing to a niche community of female athletes, aspiring runners, and proud gym rats that is very active on Tumblr. While the blog is still in its infancy, I’m eager to see more from the fitness brand in the future.
Calvin Klein: http://calvinklein.tumblr.com/
Calvin Klein is a great example of how fashion brands can thrive on Tumblr. Its mix of sleek and sophisticated style with a dash of sexiness (it is Calvin Klein, after all) is what makes this blog so visually appealing. Calvin Klein has tapped into an already existing community of style enthusiasts and lifestyle-focused fashionistas who will love and engage with the variety of content CK’s Tumblr has to offer, including behind the scenes exclusives, photos from the runway, sneak peeks of upcoming collections, and models during photoshoots. Ultimately, Calvin Klein uses Tumblr as means of building brand identity rather than a sales pitch opportunity.
Who would have thought that global technology giant IBM would even consider having a Tumblr? It’s a seemingly odd fit, but you would be surprised at just how informative and engaging the blog is. It provides a glimpse into “the culture of innovation and philosophy of design” that shapes the company. What makes the blog particularly successful is its ability to make complex ideas easier for the average person to understand and consume through brief, digestible content. With a variety of categories you wouldn’t expect from a major IT corporation, like Cognitive Cooking, hilarious How Not Tos for midsized businesses, and fascinating Predictions for the future of technology, IBM has framed itself as approachable, transparent, and human.
Taco Bell: http://tacobell.tumblr.com/
Taco Bell already has an established presence on social media and Tumblr is yet another platform for the fast food restaurant to share original content and interact with its passionate fans. One unique aspect of Tumblr that Taco Bell has done a great job of utilizing is the ask feature, where users can ask questions or submit general comments that blogs can answer privately or publically. Taco Bell receives a large amount of asks from users, and never fails to leave a witty reply. When Taco Bell added the Quesarito to its menu, it didn’t reveal it outright on Tumblr: instead, it prompted users to play 20 Questions to guess what the new exciting item was. The questions flooded in, and Taco Bell seemed to have a lot of fun answering each one. The brand is very in touch with its younger demographic and it recognizes Tumblr is a great place to reach this audience.
It’s important to note that most, if not all, of the blogs mentioned here have put advertising dollars behind sponsored posts (these are posts that appear in Tumblr users’ feeds regardless if they follow the blog or not). Regardless, these examples prove that with sound reasoning and a focused strategic approach, brands from a variety of industries can succeed on Tumblr and are worth learning from as the channel continues to grow.