You might think with several kinds of social sites, shopping sites, comparison, review sites, and not to forget, blogging sites… Why would you want to continue to find and use new or alternative sites once you’re already comfortable with the ones you’ve been using.
So here’s to Tumblr. If you haven’t used Tumblr yet, don’t worry, you will want to as soon as you’ve read this post!
Similar to WordPress and Twitter in many ways, but vastly different in its approach. Tumblr is a micro blogging platform that is host to over 80 million blogs. On that fact, there lies some great potential for exposing yourself to other users and marketing your assets, whether for fun or for business, on a platform that is a little less formal than its peers.
Like with all social media sites, the usefulness of Tumblr is really down to how you think you may benefit from it, what you would like to get out of it, how you plan on showing value in your post, and most importantly, deciding on whether it is a personal or business account for marketing purposes.
Tumblr is used by people from various professional backgrounds. Many are there to blog their life stories away, and others who want to create a branding experience. Whatever the case may be, you’re sure to take away some fantastic experience, inspiration, insight and ideas into the lives of other users who use this site to communicate.
The team at Tumblr have made it extremely easy for anybody to sign up with very little effort. All you have to enter is your email and password. Following that, you can begin by setting up your profile and blog along with the image you want to use to represent you.
Also, add a good username. If you’re worried about not getting your favourite username, don’t worry too much as you can always change it at a later date when you have found a more suitable one.
What happens once you’re in
Tumblr allows you to do several different things once you have logged in. You can create, edit and also delete pages on the go. The Pages are a great place to add some general information about you, your business, your project including contact information.
You can also choose between using standard design for your pages or custom design which differentiate from the rest of your blog.
When you find blogs that you like, you are able to follow them by clicking on the upper right follow button. Once you follow a blog, any updates made to that blog delivers an update to your home feed. People who like your blog can also choose to follow your blog.
You can see who’s following your blog and you can also choose to show or hide the followers of your blog if that’s what your prefer. The show and hide feature is available on certain blog themes only.
It is wise to select and use a good avatar (picture) of yourself or your business brand logo depending on what you’re using Tumblr for. Tumblr is quite flexible and you can tailor each blog in different ways.
You can create blog posts of various types such as; a text post, a picture post, a quote, a link, a chat post, an audio post and a video post. You can use them in combination of text and media, but the beauty of Tumblr is that it helps you to deliver timely posts in bite-size chunks of information.
Social media is about connecting. On Tumblr, like other social sites, a way to connect beyond ’likes’ and ’follows’ is by direct messaging. You can send direct messages to other users with a maximum of 500 messages in one day. In order to stop spamming, you can only send a message 48 hours after following a users blog.
There are two other great features that raise the level of engagement and interaction on Tumblr – Ask and Submissions. These have to be enabled through the settings of each specific blog.
The Ask feature allows people to ask you any questions they have whether about your work, a particular post or a project. When answering, you can choose to do so publicly via your blog posts or privately via direct messaging.
Submissions is almost like guest blogging, but without all the intricacies. If the submission feature is enabled, people can submit posts to your blog. You are always notified of submissions as they would require your approval prior to being published, and so, there’s no risk of content being published on your blog without your permission.
The way posts are created and scheduled is absolutely fantastic on Tumblr.
You can Queue posts in order to publish the various posts over time. You can Backdate posts to change the order of the post on the blog itself. You can make a post Private, which means only you and other admins can see the post. The more obvious, Scheduling a post, whereby you set the date and time of when the post should be published.
The dashboard is what makes Tumblr standout in many ways over WordPress. Then again, they are two different types of platforms used in different ways. Nevertheless, Tumblr has a very simple dashboard and each section simply works!
You can immediately start using the dashboard within Tumblr to engage and interact better with the people you follow and the posts you like. There are buttons that you will find at the top right of all the posts that enable you to like and re-blog and hence, open up the channels for communication and engagement.
Part of what makes Tumblr what it is is people using it to tumble across posts that they would re-blog or like. By doing so, they are curating and filtering posts that interest them the most.
The great aspect about Tumblr is its versatility and diverse content. With over 80 million blogs, most with very artistic, creative and somewhat inspirational content, you can only imagine the kind of blogs you will come across. The value and benefit really comes from discovering new blogs that appeal to your senses.
So how do you discover blogs that may relate to your tastes? You can search at the top using the Tag feature. These are tags that are managed by people and grouped into searchable blogs per tag.
For example, you may be interested in Fashion and everything to do with fashion. Go ahead and search using the fashion tag and there you will see any blogs that are related to fashion. This is a great way to find followers and likewise, gives you the ability to re-blog the posts that you like.
Keep your eye on the Spotlight section too. Here you will find blogs that have shown great promise in delivering exciting content to the reader. The spotlight section is auto-created by Tumblr and its bots. Also, known as ‘Tumblrbots’, its prime job is to serve up fantastic blogs with inspiring content.
If you want to get featured under the spotlight, a great tip would be to offer unique, creative and absolutely original content or text with something great to say. This way, you raise your game and opportunity to also be featured in the spotlight.
Don’t be lonely, get connected!
Social media and blogging is about getting connected. So, once you have set up your Tumblr blog it’s time to get connected with people. You can do this by first, seeking out people you already know on Facebook and Gmail and getting connected to them.
On the right side of the blog, click on Find Blogs followed by People You Know and there you will see Facebook and Gmail. Get each of them authorised and off you go. Hopefully, one day Tumblr will add other social integration channels.
At the same time, as mentioned above, you can go to the Spotlight tab and click on your interests as found on the right side and find people to follow and connect.
On the Go
Updating and posting on the go has never been easier. Tumblr offers two types of mobile apps to explore and share from anywhere – iPhone/iPod and Android.
The mobile apps are indeed very powerful albeit a little simpler. Nevertheless, they offer the same functionality and flexibility that you see with the desktop browser version.
This guide is by no means a full compilation of all the treasures hidden behind Tumblr, however, it will definitely give you a good start to what is a great platform to launch your ideas and inspiration on.
If you are a seasoned Tumblr blogger or not, can you share some alternative tips on how to connect with others and produce a standout blog?