Read Analytics and Data Analysis Blog News » Blogging Marketing Analytics, Marketing Analytics Books, Marketing Analytics Interviews, Tumbleweed Marketing Analytics Articles » Tackling Tumblr Blogs with Thord Daniel Hedengren
Bloggers and blog marketers may use Tumblr, WordPress, Blogger, Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, and LinkedIn for building audiences and creating online communities. However, there are advantages and disadvantages to every social networking platform. Thord Daniel Hedengren is the author of Tackling Tumblr: Web Publishing Made Simple, a book published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd.. In his book, Hedengren provides tips for bloggers who wish to use the Tumblr micro-blogging platform for blog or website marketing. Recently, Hedengren shared some Tumblr tips from his Tackling Tumblr book with Tumbleweed.
Thord, it’s been almost 6 months since we spoke about your Smashing WordPress: Beyond the Blog book that is published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd. But now I’d like to ask about another book of yours, Tackling Tumblr: Web Publishing Made Simple, also a Wiley publication. I have questions about Tumblr generally, specific Tumblr tips in your book and your comments about how small businesses might use Tumblr. So, here goes.
Question 1: First of all, what is Tumblr? What does it cost to use it? And why have you chosen to write a book about Tumblr? Your other books cover WordPress.
Hedengren: Tumblr is an awesome blogging platform that makes it really simple to share posts, photos, quotes, videos and whatnot. It is very straight forward and easy to use, with a social component as well. I guess that, and the fact that there are so many users (over 45 million blogs as we speak), made me tune into it.
Question 2: The world has Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, WordPress, LinkedIn, and Blogger, to name the most well-known social networking platforms. What are the top three things that Tumblr can do that other social networking platforms can’t?
Hedengren: Tumblr is a little bit of all of these, and not really a competitor per se, other than in the time you spend online, in my opinion. Instead, Tumblr offers something different, with a combination of social features (liking, reblogging, even Asks) and the fairly powerful publishing platform that it is.
Question 3: Is the user or audience base on Tumblr different than Twitter, Facebook, or YouTube? Is Tumblr better, for example, for creative types who wish to market art, writing or photo portfolios to ad agencies?
Hedengren: Hard to tell really, it is a huge user base, not a niche one. But it is fair to say that a lot of Tumblr users enjoy posting photos and videos, and then reblog other people’s content. The ease of publishing, and the possibility of an additional audience thanks to the reblog feature, is one of the key features. That’s why it works so well for photographers for example, they get more eyeballs on their photos this way.
Question 4: You speak about creating multiple Tumblr blogs on page 27 of your book. Why would someone do that?
Hedengren: Let’s say you’re a cat person, and all you post is photos of your cat. Then you find your old great grandfather’s journal from World War I, and you want to repost his thoughts. That would probably clash a bit with all your kitty posts, right? Since it is so easy to create new Tumblr blogs you might as well if you want to branch out.
Question 5: A Tumblr user may post several types of content on a Tumblr page – images, text, videos, links, and audio files. But let’s focus on “quote posts” and “chat posts” that you discuss on pages 53 and 55 of your book, respectively.
a: What are quote posts, and how might a business use them?
Hedengren: The most obvious one would be testimonials, but it is also a way to broadcast your company’s key values.
b: Can the source (i.e. video, book) be cited directly beneath a quote post?
c: What about citation styles? Can someone choose the citation style (eg. APA Citation Style) for referencing a quote’s source? Or is there a standard citation style that should be used on Tumblr?
Hedengren: Well, you can alter it a bit in the theme, but most themes will stick to the standard citation style used on Tumblr.
a: Can the chat post feature embed live feeds of discussions with others elsewhere on the Internet – on MSN Messenger, for example – in a Tumblr page?
Hedengren: No, it can’t. It is just for transcripts.
b: Let’s say a chat post discussion references a website – your http://tdh.me/ site, for example. Can a link to it be created from within the chat post in Tumblr?
Question 6: Page 106 of your book mentions “connecting” Tumblr with other social media sites. So, could I feed Tumbleweed Marketing Analytics blog comments from a certain post – or category of posts – to a Tumbleweed Tumblr page? Does Tumblr work well with WordPress in this way?
Hedengren: Yes, you can connect with any RSS feed and push that to your Tumblr site. Feeding posts from a WordPress site using this method works perfectly well.
Question 7: What’s the difference between a “comment’ and an “ask” on Tumblr. Is it similar to the distinction between a Facebook “like” and “share”?
Hedengren: Not really. A comment is comments as we know them (usually powered by Disqus on Tumblr). Asks on the other hand, are direct questions to the Tumblr blog owner, who can choose to answer and publish the question and answer as a post on his blog.
Tumblr and Small Business
Question 8: Your book’s Chapter 8 – Beyond Blogging With Tumblr – contains a great section about using Tumblr for small business marketing.
a: When should a small business use Tumblr – rather than a static web page – for marketing itself? Does it depend on the business’ content to be posted, products or services, or its marketing goals.
Hedengren: It is more a matter of how you want to communicate, and if you want to keep updating your site. If all you want to do is post some information about your company then a Tumblr blog isn’t ideal. On the other hand, if you would like to offer a flow of content, information or photos or news or a little of everything, then by all means give Tumblr a go.
b: Does a Tumblr page perform better than a static website on a search engine (eg. Google, Yahoo!, Bing) search engine results page (SERP)? Assuming, of course, that both have been properly optimized with search engine optimization (SEO) techniques?.
Hedengren: Not really, this is one of Tumblr’s weak points actually.
c: Can you briefly describe two creative ways in which a small business has used Tumblr to conduct a marketing campaign?
Hedengren: I’ve seen coffee shops put Tumblr to good use, posting both information about recently imported beans, along with some photos and “favorite coffee drinks” posts. This makes the visitors connect more with the coffee shop and since these things sprout everywhere, this site made them stand out. Another great example is a local tattoo artist who posts photos of her tattoos. So simple, so reblog-friendly. Brilliant.
Ordering Your Tackling Tumblr Book
Question 9: Where can someone purchase a copy of Tackling Tumblr? Can you include links to where someone can purchase it online? In Canada and the US, which bookstores carry it?
Hedengren: Most bookstores who carry Wiley’s books will be able to at least order Tackling Tumblr. There are links to various editions on Amazon available on my store page: http://tdh.me/store/ – shopping there also has the benefits of helping to pay for my coffee addiction.
Question 10: Do you have any other books planned?
Hedengren: Always! I recently finished Smashing WordPress: Beyond the Blog, 3rd Edition and right now I’m wrapping up an ebook about publishing with WordPress in Swedish. I’ll most likely do an English version of that one as well. We’ll see after that, but the idea is to play around a bit with the ebook format and release a couple of shorter books in various topics this year. That, and writing that novel I’ve been dying to tackle for three months now…
Thord, Tackling Tumblr: Web Publishing Made Simple is a wonderful book. Tumbleweed small business readers will find your insights about Tumblr valuable. Thanks for taking the time to speak with Tumbleweed about Tumblr.
Thanks a lot, and thanks for having me again!
Marketing Ideas: Blogging Marketing Analytics, Marketing Analytics Books, Marketing Analytics Interviews, Tumbleweed Marketing Analytics Articles · Tags: microblogging, Smashing WordPress: Beyond the Blog, Tackling Tumblr, Tackling Tumblr: Website Publishing Made Simple, Thord Daniel Hedengren, tumblr, Tumblr for small business