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Back in June 2012 Tumblr creator David Karp and his team publicly announced a more focused attempt at getting advertising on people’s dashboards. 

One of the first brands to trial the paid service was Adidas, however it is definitely not the best as proven by the low amount of ‘re-posts’ it receives.

Below is a list of five brands using Tumblr well, but first a look into what a popular Tumblr user, Georgia Gore, thinks of more advertising and more brands on the social network... or net-twerk, as some Tumblr users like to call it.

After seeing TJ Maxx's Tumblr and Mastercard Teen's Tumblr has your view of brands on Tumblr changed, and are you more likely to shop at TJ Maxx or apply for a Mastercard Teen account?

I think that I would definitely follow the brand's blogs and if they posted stuff that I felt suited my 'style' or interested me, it would definitely attract me to shop there.

Especially if I didn't know a lot about the brand, then their Tumblr account would probably make me want to be involved with the company.

What would be the easiest way for a brand to accumulate a large amount of active followers on Tumblr and gain a lot of notes?

They could also advertise it in store and build with existing customers. When you buy something in Gilly Hicks, they say "Don't forget to follow the Gilly Hicks girls on Twitter," and it can make the consumers curious, as it did with me.

If you could tell brands one thing about Tumblr, what would it be?

I would tell them that it's important to have a variety of content, and don't get too hung up on the commercial side and make their blog seem overly 'sell sell sell' as that won't attract their target market and could do more bad than good. 

Clearly from the interview we can see that these brands below are using Tumblr correctly. They are blending in original content with advertisements and aren't alienating or pandering to the teen audience.

Lexus

Lexus interweaves stylish shots of models like Jessica Stam and GIFs of positive quotes, with metallic coated hybrids to both sell the brand and sell the image that goes along with it. Glamour.

The Bling Ring

Despite the fact the site has now been reduced to a solitary image and quote, in its prime the site was the blog of the character played by Emma Watson and drummed up interest among its key demographic.

Tumblr even got a shout-out in the movie finale with Emma Watson telling users to ‘visit her blog’ followed by the URL.

American Apparel

Artwork, attractive models and American Apparel go hand in hand, resulting in a stylish Tumblr plastered in raunchy images, perfect for a raunchy brand.

Havaianas

With images of Jack Kerouac in an Instagram-esque filter and photos of Jennifer Lawerence (J-Law is a Tumblr queen) holding an Oscar, this brand perfectly follows Georgia Gore’s earlier tip: "Don't get too hung up on the commercial side."

Doctor Who

In a world where every celebrity, TV show and movie has its own fandom (Gleeks, Directioners, Little Monsters to name a few) it’s no surprise that the brand that best connects with its users is a fandom leader, Doctor Who.

BBC America created the Tumblr and since then it’s blown up with ‘Whovian’ fan art and promos for upcoming episodes.

In conclusion...

Tumblr may be becoming further commercialised following the takeover by Marissa Mayer’s Yahoo (she’s been referred to as Satan by multiple users) and the launch of in-dashboard adverts, but unless a brand is willing to drop its suit and tie front like Lexus and the other listed brands have - you won’t have much luck on the teen super-site that is Tumblr.com.

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Published 14 August, 2013 by David Olshanetsky

David Olshanetsky was the (teenage) intern at Econsultancy.  Follow on Twitter @BTWOMGLIKEYAH.

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Comments (4)

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Gia Orsini

Will there be more Tumblr content posted? I'm interested now.

almost 3 years ago

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Corey Hammond

Is it possible to get a screenshot of "The Bling Ring Tumblr" before it was adjusted to just the quote and photo of Emma Watson and Leslie Mann? A great article regardless.

almost 3 years ago

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Jessica Gates

I'm pleased to see more articles about Tumblr sprouting up. I'm curious what criterion were used to determine "a popular Tumblr user"? I think it would be advantageous to have opinions and interviews from more than just one prominent Tumblr user; although, for the length of your article I see how this was appropriate. I would love to see a more in-depth version of the ideas you pose here, that delves into statistics and specific examples of good Tumblr posts, rather than just ideas. Still, I agree with and greatly enjoyed your article. Thanks!

almost 3 years ago

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David Olshanetsky, Student at School

@Jessica

I selected her because she has a popularly followed account that I enjoyed looking at.

I did create a longer interview, but I thought it was too long to post.

I might publish the full interview if it is of any interest.

almost 3 years ago

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