Tumblr is one of the most exciting destinations in the blogosphere. By combining blogging and social networking in a single package, it stands out from the crowd as a platform that is truly unique. But the fact that Tumblr is so unique makes having success very challenging. Approach it like your typical social network or blog site, and you could end up with disappointing results.
Thinking about integrating Tumblr into your blogging or social media marketing strategy? Before you make the move, read this tutorial so you know how to get started and make an impact with your efforts.
Step 1: Create An Account
Getting started with Tumblr calls for you to set up an account. You will be asked to create a username and password, and connect those credentials to a valid email address. Once your account is confirmed, you can change your Tumblr URL as by default, it will be named after your username. If you have your own domain, you can set it to point to Tumblr’s server.
To change your URL or use your own domain, click the “Settings” icon at the top of your dashboard, click on the name of your account, then make the necessary adjustments in the “URL” section.
Step 2: Build an Attractive Blog
Like many blog sites, Tumblr blogs are based on templates, better known in the blogosphere as themes. Luckily you have plenty to choose from, both in the form of free and premium options. Note: Premium themes are typically more visually attractive, but with a little knowledge of CSS or HTML, you can tweak your theme enough to give it a unique look all its own.
To access your theme options, click the “Settings” icon at the top of your dashboard, click on the name of your account, then click on “Customize” in the “Themes” section. From here, you can choose your theme and even edit the raw code to customize the look and feel.
Step 3: Build Your Network
In the world of Tumblr, your presence is only as strong as your network. Needless to say, getting out there and connecting is crucial. The easiest way to start building this network is to follow other bloggers. Ideally, you want to connect with like-minded bloggers you have something in common with. You can begin by using the built-in search feature, which allows you to browse published posts based on tags. If you’re lucky, some of the people you follow will follow you back.
Step 4: Post Interesting Content
When it comes to the importance of solid content, Tumblr isn’t all that different. In fact, if you really want to build that strong network, this is probably the best way to go about it. So what type of content should you be posting? Well, that depends on you and your audience. You can’t go wrong with a well written post, but just know that Tumblr has a strong visual component. Photos, GIFs, and video tend to be very popular with this crowd. Also, if you want people to find your content, make sure you tag it with relevant keywords.
Step 5: Connect to Existing Sites
Do you have another website or blog you’re running? If the answer is yes, then you should definitely integrate Tumblr into the mix. This step couldn’t be easier for those who have a social presence thanks to a feature in your account settings that allows you to post everything you publish directly to Facebook or Twitter. Even if you do not enable this option, manually sharing your posts is easy enough on just about any site.
Step 6: Stay Active
Finally, we have a cardinal rule shared by both the blogosphere and the social web — the importance of staying active. This step is arguably even more important for Tumblrers when considering that everyone you’re connected with probably already has enough to keep them busy. Fortunately, there are plenty of ways to stay active.
You could, for example:
- Reblog interesting posts
- Comment and like other posts
- Encourage others to submit posts on your blog
Create brief posts using the “Quote”, “Link”, “Chat”, or “Audio” features on the dashboard.
With such a plethora of interesting features, it’s no wonder that Tumblr is among the hottest topics in both worlds of blogging and social media. And while it has been going strong for a few years, something tells me this hybrid publishing platform has much more to show. Don’t neglect the important steps in this tutorial when you go to build your Tumblr empire!
Francis Santos is a writer for Benchmark Email, a best practices event marketing company.