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Tumblr for Small Business

Image-heavy social networking sites are becoming a more popular form of online content creation. Sites like Instagram, Tumblr, Pinterest and others are well-known and often used among different demographics, allowing users to view and post creative images and video content.

The micro-blogging platform Tumblr can be ideal for small businesses because of its ease of use for sharing video and image-rich content, and for engaging a younger generation of consumers. Similar to Pinterest, Tumblr lets users focus on the creative and visual aspects of a brand. The site is also similar to a blog but encourages the use of fewer words for more digestible posts.

You may be unsure on whether to add Tumblr to an existing online marketing campaign, but Tumblr can be easy to integrate with other accounts and is growing very quickly.

Should Your Business Create a Tumblr Account?

Tumblr is a good option for businesses that deal with any form of design and/or visual content, such as companies involved in design, photography, travel, retail or advertising. The site is oriented towards innovative, beautiful, funny or eye-catching images and graphics.

Because of its casual nature, the site allows you to easily show off your company’s personality and interact with an online audience. The demographic of Tumblr tends to be a younger and more urban audience, with a less “professional” tone than sites like LinkedIn, allowing businesses to show a more creative side. Because of this demographic focus, however, it may not be the best investment of time for a business that is targeting an older audience.

How to Create a Tumblr Account

Tumblr has a fairly simple setup process. Simply direct your browser to www.tumblr.com, enter your email and create a password and a username. Your username will also be your Tumblr URL (such as www.yourname.tumblr.com), so be sure to select your username carefully. You should stick to your business name, or it should be something short and catchy that is consistent with your brand (this will be easier for current and potential customers to remember).

Once you set up your account, you can then customize your Tumblr. The site offers many nice, professional options, including Basic (free) and Premium (paid) themes. You can customize these designs with your brand colors and logos. You may also choose to purchase a theme from another site (like this), or you can hire a graphic designer, which can be found through personal recommendations or on a freelance site like Elance.com.

Then you can start posting. Tumblr has seven posting options available through your dashboard: Text, Photo, Quote, Link, Chat, Audio and Video. Just click what you want to share and upload.

How to Use Tumblr to Improve Your Brand

To get the most out of Tumblr and use it to improve your brand, you need to integrate the site into your larger marketing plan. Focus on your company’s marketing goals, whether that is branding, education, awareness or something else.

Keep these other tips in mind when creating your Tumblr:

  • Posts should be short and creative. This makes it easier to get and keep your audience’s attention. If you do write longer posts, space these out among shorter ones.
  • Avoid too much self-promotion and direct marketing. Remember that people come to Tumblr to be entertained, educated and inspired, not to read about your brand.
  • Link to your Tumblr on your existing social networks, blogs, website, etc. This will help drive traffic to your new online outlet. You can also have pages on your Tumblr that redirect to these websites as well, so visitors to your Tumblr can easily find you on other places on the web.
  • Use tags when sharing content. Link to relevant terms and include important keywords so your posts will come up in searches on the site.
  • Focus on building your creative brand, ideas and “personality” on the site. Browse the Tumblrs of brands that you respect to see what type of content you should post and how you can develop personality without straying too much from your message.
  • Put someone experienced in charge of managing your Tumblr. Your Tumblr approach should be unified with the rest of your social media strategy, so you want to make sure the person in charge is managing all social media accounts. If necessary, posts can be scheduled ahead of time, so all of the content can be pieced together at once and then scheduled for the week.
  • Invite people to follow your new Tumblr in person, through your other social networking accounts and via email.
  • Follow other brands and customers, and make an effort to reblog or like their posts. This will help you build engagement, get ideas, network and get feedback.
Starting a Business?
Join Docstoc's 100% Free Quick-Launch Guide to Starting a Business! Curated Exclusively by the Editors of Docstoc