Three Tips to Build Your Tumblr Presence (from one of their former VPs)

Rhudy & Co. continues its conversation with former Tumblr Vice President of Support Marc LaFountain to discuss how organizations large and small can best use Tumblr.

Review part 1 of this three-part series here.

Q. How can you take advantage of Tumblr on the go?

A. We offer a free iPhone app and a free Android app. We also support mobile email posting.

If you look in the settings on a blog in Tumblr, you will see a secret, private, email address that will look like a bunch of letters and numbers at Anything that gets emailed to that address becomes a post. We also offer call-in audio posting. You can call a toll-free number and you can record 90 seconds of audio and that can become 90 seconds of audio on your blog.

Marc LaFountain Q. What makes Tumblr stand out from other social media sites?

A. I think the first thing is that Tumblr is not necessarily about your personal life. If you want to blog on Tumblr as Jonathan Rhudy you can. If you want to blog on Tumblr as Rhudy PR you can. If you want to blog on Tumblr as PR Guy and no one really knows who you are or where you are, you can.

I think being able to blog with whatever identity you wish on Tumblr and being able to blog with mltiple identities if you wish has always been a very powerful and core part of the experience.

I think the other thing that I really love about Tumblr is that it’s very media rich — you aren’t limited to 140 characters. We offer seven different types of posts, so you can easily post video, audio, text, chat, quotes and links. It’s very easy for you to express yourself.

Q. Are there any tips you share with new Tumblr users?

A.  Sure.

Post original content: Be a source for really great, original content

Post frequently: Your blog should feel like a vibrant, current place

Engage: Follow, like, reblog, reply, ask, submit

Q. What’s your advice on the best types of content to share?

A. I think it will vary on what you are trying to do and who your audience is. If you are doing a personal blog, you have to think about your personal audience and letting your personality and your interests shine through.

If you’re doing a blog for a business or for a brand or a product, then you have to worry much more about staying on message and asking, “Is this about my company, my brand, and my product?” 

If you are blogging about a specific issue, you have to look at the kind of feedback you are getting, when your posts are getting things, what posts are getting followed and liked and reblogged and replied to the most and the least, and what kind of feedback are all of the social features of Tumblr giving you. 

Q. Do you ever get overwhelmed with all the information out there? How do you handle it?

A. I do. I have almost this compulsive need to stay on top of my dashboard feed, which I realize is probably very unhealthy. It’s a huge glut of information when you’ve got tens of millions of posts coming in and you’ve got tens of millions of users. 

I try to use track tags on Tumblr and filters and alerts on mail and all kinds of tools on our help desk system to help kind of control the flow and to make sure that I am seeing the stuff that is most relevant, most interesting and most pertinent. 

Q. How would you describe the radar function and overall dashboard on Tumblr?

A. The dashboard is where:

1. you create and edit your posts, and

2. you view the posts of the people you’ve chosen to follow.

You can also interact with other members by liking, reblogging and replying to them. The radar is a part of the dashboard where we feature posts that are especially witty, funny, interesting, innovative, compelling. It’s our way of showcasing some of the amazing stuff happening in the community.

Tune into Part 3 of our interview with Marc LaFountain to learn more about how corporations use Tumblr and how the startup makes money. 

Jonathan Rhudy plans to use the "secret email" way to start posting more content on his Tumblr feed.