An Introduction to Tumblr Marketing for Bloggers

Tumbler marketing for bloggers

Tumblr isn’t the first social network that comes to mind when you think about marketing your blog. Or even the fourth or fifth, for that matter. Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest, YouTube– yes, Tumblr, not exactly. 

But, Tumblr has immense potential as a marketing channel. It is both a social network and a blogging platform. If you already have a blog, your Tumblr presence can boost your visibility and send more traffic your way. The platform has over 200 million blogs publishing 80 million posts per day. 

No matter how you plan to use Tumblr, it can make a meaningful difference to your efforts at growing your audience online.

Quick Tumblr Stats and Facts

Tumblr is a hybrid platform for microblogging and social networking. A huge advantage is the ability to reblog or repost content from other bloggers (like the retweet function on Twitter). 

Over 48% of Tumblr users belong to the Gen Z cohort, born between 1997 and 2015 (source: Wall Street Journal). If you count young adults among your blog audience, Tumblr is a worthy marketing channel. 

And, Tumblr is ranked #1 in social sentiment towards brands (source: Tumblr). If you can effectively engage your Tumblr followers, you’ll be in a better position to earn their loyalty. 

Tumblr has a blanket ban on adult content. Should your blog deal with any risqué subject matters, go through their guidelines to clarify whether you can use the platform. 

Before You Get Started on Tumblr

Before you sign up with Tumblr, define what you want to get out of the platform and revisit your ‘blog’s brand’ – what exactly is your blog is all about, who it is for, and why it exists.

Tumblr blogs that revolve around specific niches and sub-cultures tend to attract the most attention and build loyal communities. Therefore, having a clear message and concrete values matter on this platform.

You can choose from different post formats such as text, photo, audio, video, link, quote, chat and GIF. That said, engaging visual content and blog posts perform especially well.

Tumblr is not an out-and-out marketing channel. It is a place to create awareness about your blog and build relationships with your audience. 

Tone down your marketing messages and leave the sales pitch out of your Tumblr posts. Instead, focus on connecting with people and providing them something of value. The more you build trust, the more likely your followers will advocate for you and exchange value with you. 

Bloggers and brands use Tumblr as their top-of-the-funnel platform to build awareness and sow seeds of trust. So, suppose you make money writing smartphone accessory reviews on your blog. In that case, you should first position yourself as a resource for interesting, helpful information on topics related to mobile accessories. 

You can also use Tumblr to experiment with different types of content and, along with other research findings, improve your overall content marketing game. 

Creating a Tumblr Account

Sign up with your email address

Sign up on Tumblr

Tumblr will help you build your feed. You can skip this step if you wish

Build Tumblr feed

You will then be taken to your dashboard, which displays the live feed of the recent posts from the blogs you follow. You can like (heart icon) the posts, reblog them to your Tumblr blog, or reply to posts.

Tumblr dashboard

To get a taste of Tumblr, you can type in your niche or anything related to your blog. A search for smartphone covers brought up the results seen below. All of the likes, replies, and reblogs that a post has received are known as ‘notes’ on Tumblr. They appear at the end of each post. More notes are indicative of a higher engagement.

Tumblr search results

Start Posting

The dashboard is the default logged-in view, and this is where you create and publish posts.

Click on the icon for the type of content you want to post. Clicking on the text icon will open a post form. 

Hashtags or tags, as they’re called in Tumblr, help users to find blogs to follow. Adding relevant tags will help your posts get in front of the right audience for your blog. 

Once your post is ready, you can share it or schedule it to go out at the chosen time. Tumblr allows you to queue up to 300 posts at a time and publish up to 50 posts on the same day.

Tumblr post

Customize Your Tumblr Blog

Upload a photo, choose an accent or background, and select a theme to make your Tumblr distinctive. There are different options to manage your account. You can let people ask questions, allow messages from Tumblrs you follow or don’t follow, and automatically set up sharing posts on Twitter. 

Tumblr profile page

Affiliate Marketing on Tumblr

As previously mentioned, Tumblr is a platform primarily for creating brand awareness and building an audience rather than a marketing channel. 

Even so, you can include affiliate links in your Tumblr posts, and they won’t be blocked or removed. 

Popular affiliate marketing niches on Tumblr include home décor, travel, real estate, web hosting, and beauty. 

That said, you should avoid relying solely on Tumblr to promote your affiliate offers and steer clear from adding too many affiliate links. It can alienate your audience. 

Exploring Tumblr

The compass icon clues you in on trending topics, and staff picks. You can filter the content by text, photos, GIFs, video, and ‘asks,’ Asks can be used to ask a question on Tumblr.

Using the ask a question feature, you can do market research, collect opinions about a product/service you promote on your blog or gain a sense of user sentiments about a topic or news event. You can ask questions either publicly by displaying your username or anonymously.

Tumblr has a simple interface. You should have no problem getting to grips with its features and functionality quickly. As with any social media network, the more you use it, the more familiar you will get with everything it has to offer.

Tips to Grow Your Following and Boost Blog Traffic

As emphasized previously, Tumblr marketing for bloggers is about creating quality content that engages users, reblogging valuable content, and replying to their posts. 

Here are some ways you can build a loyal community on Tumblr, which in turn can translate into traffic and revenue for your blog. 

  1. 1
    Get a custom theme and domain name to make a good first impression.
  2. 2
    Great content wins on Tumblr. Post quality content to increase your chances of being reblogged. 
  3. 3
    Short bursts of content do well on Tumblr, but the occasional long posts help you show up on Tumblr and Google searches. 
  4. 4
    Queue your posts for publication at different times of the day. The more you post, the more your chances of attracting a bigger audience. 
  5. 5
    Choose relevant tags. While Tumblr allows you to add up to 30 tags, it indexes the first 20 only. 
  6. 6
    Follow popular accounts in your niche based on the number of notes their posts attract and the number of followers they have. 
  7. 7
    Network with creators and request to submit your posts to their blog. You can return the favor. 
  8. 8
    Reblog posts that strike a chord with you. If your connections from other social networks are on Tumblr, connect with them and reblog their content. 
  9. 9
    Leverage cross-posting. Link your Tumblr to your Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and other social networks. 
  10. 10
    Use the ‘ask’ feature strategically. 

Start Today

Tumblr’s engaged audience and positive social sentiments can make a real difference to your blog’s marketing results. Familiarize yourself with the platform and experiment with different strategies to discover what works best for you 🙂

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Theo McArthur

Theo McArthur has been blogging for more than 20 years and has extensive experience with WordPress, content marketing, and affiliate marketing. In 2016 she launched the video training course, 'Blogging for a Living', and has taught over 22,000 students how to set up their own successful blog

Get the Step-by-Step Video Training Course and Start Your New Blog Today :)