Tumblr, from the point of view of Forbes et al, is an “untapped market place.” This was bound to happen, but can we stop from being exploited? While change is hard for us tumblrers (we grumble at minor UI tweaks), infiltration by the mainstream will be even harder to manage and navigate. But ads are coming.
I see two solutions. 1) Accept that we will be inundated with advertisements. Or 2) collectively resist.
I choose resistance. I love my tumblr community. I trust them - a rare thing these days. I admire them - a human trait we need more of in this digital world. I am inspired by them - Every. Single. Day.
I bust my ass in my work life - I’ve written over $10 million in grants, peer-review for a climate journal, publish climate science, travel to Europe for business, mentor students at Vermont Law among others, am in unbelievable amount of meetings and webinars, and do countless other things that fry my brain to a crisp. Tumblr helps me keep sane.
Marketers ravaged Facebook. And look at it now, it’s become an overflowing trash-bin of hopelessness. (Thank the electronic gods for AdBlockPlus).
Now I read we’re next?! No. You shall not pass!
This is how the article concludes:
it’s already achieved a massive scale of highly engaged consumers eager for interesting content and marketers are starting to succeed on the platform. Now is the time to take advantage.
We are not a market demographic. We are friends having fun. We are contributing, trying to better ourselves self-sufficiently.
So fuck you Forbes.
Yeah, I whole heartedly agree with this.
I wish tumblr wanted $10 a month from each of us. But they don’t. We are for sale. If you’re not being charged for something, you’re the one being sold. That’s the way it is online.
If it weren’t for the community here and the bookmarklet, I’d be on Google+ right now. I’m not joking.
I’ve been a Tumblr user for years and am a huge fan of this platform. I love the content and the beautifully simple user experience. And while I don’t participate all that deeply in the community myself, the smart, funny contributions from all kinds of folks really make this place what it is. I don’t want Tumblr to become awash in ads, either.
But I’m also a marketer.
I agree that there are huge problems with the ways in which many brands approach social media marketing. I don’t know that Facebook is exactly an overflowing trash bin of hopelessness, but bad marketing makes for bad user experiences — and that’s not good for anyone (yes, advertising checks get cashed, but eventually, if the experience is bad enough, users will move on — and with a bad taste in their mouth about the platform and the brand).
There are ways to go about digital marketing that don’t suck. Take Red Bull, for instance, or Digitas client American Express’s UNSTAGED series. These programs create great content and experiences that people can share across their social networks — generating the kind of organic buzz marketers dream about. Do they take a lot more time, thought, effort, and money than throwing up a few Facebok posts and promoting the hell out of them? Of course. But they’re worth it because they provide value — which is absolutely essential.
When I talk to a brand about joining Tumblr, I talk about content, not advertising. What can they bring to the table? If it’s something good, I think everyone wins — users, the brand, and our beloved Tumblr. That’s the kind of marketing I can (and do) get behind every day.