Talking Tumblr Native & Mobile Ad Formats

Tumblr is a highly engaging social network comprised of users who create and share content from personal, influencer, or brand blogs. This platform supports many different types of content including pictures, animation, text, music, videos, links, and audio - all of which can be shared with those who follow a brand’s Tumblr account. When a user views content in their stream as they scroll, they have the option to ‘Like’ or ‘Reblog’ the piece.
And they do - the network’s audience is a passionate and highly interactive one. The average user spends at least 16 minutes on the site, there are 80 million+ pieces of content posted per day, and 169 million+ unique users login world-wide during any given month. Moreover the user base is largely skewed towards the Millennial demographic, despite popular belief that it caters only to teenagers, making the network that much more attractive to a large number of advertisers.

Image Courtesy of Tumblr

Additional benefits of posting content on Tumblr include:
  • Longevity potential for stories to live on via reblogs
  • Control over your content (read: no character limits!)
  • Easy integration of content from other platforms like a blog, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn, and more. 

Enter Tumblr Ads
Since its purchase of Tumblr in May 2013 for $1.1 billion dollars, Yahoo has been working to take advantage of the network’s wide reach and recently rolled out a number of ad products aimed at increasing message engagement, reach, and branded Tumblr follower bases. The ads, called Sponsored Posts, are completely native, placed seamlessly as a post within the rest of the content in a user’s stream and sold on a unique impression basis instead of engagements (with the exception of Sponsored Radars and Sponsored Spotlights, discussed below). Pricing the posts this way ensures a large reach regardless on the engagement rate of the post, which can inhibit the total number of impressions achieved when set to a cost per click pricing scheme. 

Tumblr Ad Formats
Sponsored Mobile Post
Tumblr’s mobile app is the fastest-growing use of the platform and Sponsored Mobile Posts allow you to share any kind of content with those users. The ad’s format on mobile devices takes over the entire screen, so users see nothing else but your post. Furthermore, the app facilitates engagement by making it easy for users to ‘Like’ or ‘Reblog’ the piece, or to take the next step and follow the Tumblr account.
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Sponsored Web Post
Similar to the Mobile Posts in that this ad is a way to share any piece of content with users on their dashboard, except Web Posts display the ad only on  desktop devices. Web Posts are the largest ad unit available and with the majority of Tumblr’s user base operating on desktop computers, they have the potential to receive millions of daily impressions.
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Sponsored Radar

Brands can now advertise on the most desirable placement on the Tumblr Dashboard in the form of a Sponsored Radar. Traditionally, the Radar is reserved for the most original and creative posts from throughout the community and is one of the most visible sections of the site, receiving upwards of 120 Million daily impressions. Pieces of content that make it to the Radar historically drive huge increases in both blog traffic and engagement. Due to its highly competitive positioning, these ads are sold on a total impression basis. 
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Sponsored Trending Blogs

Trending Blogs are the latest product release from Tumblr Ads. Created for any Tumblr account in need of additional followers, these are designed to introduce your brand to the community and come with a convenient ‘Follow’ button at the top of the ad for easy engagement. No additional assets are required to build these ads, the content is simply pulled in from the Tumblr profile, making these the easiest ads to set up. Trending Blog ads are currently available on mobile devices only.
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Sponsored Spotlight
The Spotlight is an editorially-curated list of favorite community blogs from 50+ different categories. Since this is an ideal place to discover cool, new blogs to follow, Sponsored Spotlight ads are ideally for marketers looking to increase follower count. The ads are featured at the top of any category of your choosing, and should feature an image that adequately represents your brand with some quick copy introducing yourself and explaining the benefits of following your account. The ads are charged by added-value only, and sold on a week-by-week basis.
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Targeting & Measuring Tumblr Ads

Currently, advertisers are able to target based on user gender and location, down to state, city, and select DMAs. Because of the targeting offerings and Tumblr’s place as a platform for wide reach, these ads are not presently recommended for niche audiences unless brands are only looking for a large number of impressions for general awareness. 

Tumblr ads come with an advanced Dashboard Analytics tool which pulls in impression, engagement, and reach information individually. These analytics can help inform marketers which type of content generates the strongest reach and engagement levels and assist in improving overall content, as well as campaign, strategy. Analytics can be broken down into three main areas:
Campaign – View real-time results on each campaign and piece of content, viewing Reach, Likes, Reblogs, Follows, and Impressions. 
Competitive – Keep an eye on your competition by tracking user engagement on up to three competitor blogs
Location – Take advantage of Tumblr’s global user base while maintaining control of campaigns by utilizing country-by-country reporting tools

The Future of Tumblr Advertising
With the rise of native advertising and Yahoo’s support to turn a profit, Tumblr could very well see a surge in Sponsored Posts in the future as more brands brave the new waters of this network. Growth will be due, in party, to the clean way ads are integrated into the overall user experience as well as the draw of content longevity opportunities, but also because of TV’s “second-screen” effect. 
Taking a leaf out of Twitter’s ad playbook, Tumblr recently asserted that their social network garners almost 2X more TV Show mentions than the microblogging site, especially in the days following, which further reinforces their longevity benefit. While Tumblr doesn’t yet offer the TV Conversation Targeting that Twitter boasts, this is something to watch out for from Tumblr if they want to be a bigger player in  multi-screen campaigns. 

Want more social ad info? 
LinkedIn Ads blog post
Instagram Ads blog post



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