In February, Facebook reported only 16% of a company’s fans will see a branded post in their newsfeed organically. The announcement was made in an effort to gain traction for Facebook’s new reach generator that guarantees 50% of fans will see a branded post each week. The caveat: marketers have to pay for the increased exposure.
In order to supplement Facebook’s organic reach potential, brands are starting to migrate to a number of different social properties. With that goal in mind, many are beginning to see value in the customizable blogging platform Tumblr to increase their brand’s social footprint.
The move makes sense when viewed through the lens of the larger social-trend stratosphere. Over the last decade, social media use has evolved from the long-form content creation platforms of the early 2,000s, (think Blogger) to short form content vehicles like Facebook and Twitter, and finally to push-button curation sites like Pinterest in 2012. Tumblr allows for a healthy mix of the short form content made popular by Facebook coupled with push-button curation via “reblogs” of content found across Tumblr’s vast ecosystem of over 60 million sites.
Tumblr’s size is large and growing. The platform’s number of blog posts doubled in size from Oct. 2011 to March 2012 topping 20 billion total posts. While that is an impressive growth trajectory, possibly more intriguing is the engagement level of Tumblr’s community. On average, Tumblr users spend 1 hour and 38 minutes on the site per month, second only to Facebook when comparing the average monthly use per visitor of the major social networks (Twitter, Pinterest, LinkedIn, MySpace and Google +).
Beyond engagement, brands are also beginning to see the opportunity Tumblr presents in terms of organic discovery potential. The platform allows for simple push-button sharing across a myriad of social channels. If a user likes a piece of content, they can easily seed it to their own Tumblr community and/or share it across a number of other social properties including Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest. In addition, the platform’s built-in tagging system allows for increased SEO and simple categorization of content; a feature not available on Facebook or Twitter.
Brands like Coca-Cola and Adidas have led the charge onto the platform. Taking advantage of Tumblr’s highly customizable interface, they’ve created a branded environment where they can seed out shareable multimedia while also reblogging UGC discovered within Tumblr’s community; ultimately allowing for a unique two-way sharing relationship not seen on other platforms.
The migration of brands to Tumblr should be an interesting trend to watch in 2013. As companies continue their never ending quest to reach more consumers, Tumblr should present itself as an intriguing and viable option.
Jeff Beck is a Social Media Coordinator for Razorfish. Follow him on Twitter for a lot of noise about college football and/or swaggerific finds on the Interweb.