As of 2014, Tumblr featured nearly 164 million blogs and over 70 billion posts. However, Tumblr is quite different from Facebook and Twitter. Tumblr features content that can be based around text, photos, videos, GIFs, or links to websites. Because the platform is a bit different than some of the other social media microblogs, not everyone knows what to do to create a valid presence on Tumblr. However, some brands totally get Tumblr, like these five companies.
MasterCard created a gallery called “Artful Inspirations” that showcases only the things that make life good. It also has utilized the platform as a storytelling device, such as following one person's trip to Hawaii minute-by-minute. If that doesn't make you want to grab your credit card and head to the islands, not much will.
2. Home Depot
Home Depot had a successful Tumblr ad campaign with a post on its microblog "Design My Style." It received 30,693 "notes" from Tumblr users on the post, which was of a framed wall garden. This was brilliant marketing because people who love gardening or crafts will likely buy the items to make this project at Home Depot.
However, Home Depot does another really smart thing on its Tumblr blog. It uses the same colors, logos, and branding as it does in its stores and all its advertising. This creates brand recognition across multiple platforms.
Ford Motor Company uses the image portion of Tumblr to really send a message. After all, they say a picture is worth 1,000 words, and Ford proves it really can be by posting images of things such as a 360-degree view of a few of its models. Ford keeps it simple, not adding a lot of text, but letting images and video it shares speak for themselves.
This is a smart strategy since 64% of adults in the United States own a smartphone and some are completely dependent upon their mobile devices for Internet access. Because screens are smaller, these people tend to skim what they read. Photos are ideally suited for targeting mobile device users. They also seem to be a younger crowd, since 46% of Tumblr users are between 18 and 24 years old.
4. J. Crew
J. Crew does a brilliant job of utilizing the platform on Tumblr. The social media site is particularly well suited to fashion brands because of the visual component of fashion.
What J. Crew does that is unique is to create a headline, such as "New Rules of Business Casual." It then provides a short intro with a link to more on that topic for those who love to read. This link goes to the blog on the J. Crew website, driving traffic. On Tumblr, it offers some photos so you can get a quick idea of the rules all in pictures.
5. The Museum of Useful Things
The Museum of Useful Things sells unique items that make life better or easier or allow you to complete tasks faster. Basically, it is just excited about its products and how they make life easier or more interesting, so it posts pictures of the products being used and a short bit of text about that item. Another thing The Museum of Useful Things does is using big, beautiful images that capture the eye.
If you haven’t tried Tumblr as part of your promotional strategy, this is a platform that is growing each year where you can reach a younger audience of customers you might not otherwise have been able to reach. Study the platform, get to know the audience there, and try your hand at a few posts.
Adrienne Erin is a freelance writer and designer based in Pennsylvania. She has been passionate about career development ever since her college years — all four of which she spent interning in her college’s career center. Now that she is her own boss, she shares the practical advice that she finds works in her own life. To see more of her work, visit her design blog.
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