Tumblr making inroads in Asia
While Facebook continues to rule social networking with over 1.35 billion active monthly users, its growth is actually failing to keep pace with a number of other networks, according to the latest statistics recently released by GlobalWebIndex.
According to GWI, Yahoo-owned Tumblr has demonstrated the largest jump in active users over the last six months with a growth rate of 120%, outstripping Instagram, Twitter, YouTube, Pinterest and Facebook, with Mark Zuckerberg’s platform itself growing by only 2%.
Tumblr’s penetration in Asia still lags behind the big four social networks, although according to Uttam Chopra, Senior Product Manager for Yahoo APAC, the platform is continuing to make inroads.
We recently sat down with Chopra, who oversees custom branded experiences and monetization of Flickr, Tumblr and Yahoo Groups, to get his perspective on Tumblr’s growth in the region, and how brands may seek to leverage it in their marketing plans.
What demographic is Tumblr typically best suited to?
Tumblr is best suited to the millennial generation. It’s basically people who are around their teens all the way up to their early 20s. That’s true of Tumblr, not only in Asia, but globally. These are people who have a lot of opinions, are not afraid to share them, and they want a platform that is completely unrestricted, and you will find a lot of that on Tumblr.
What’s unique about storytelling on Tumblr, as opposed to other platforms? And how does this kind of storytelling affect brands, in the way they approach creating Tumblr content?
Tumblr is not restricted to one media type. You can put up videos, photos, write articles and include user-generated content. There are a lot of different avenues for you on Tumblr as opposed to any other social networks. It is a completely open blank canvas. As an advertiser you can actually go and customize Tumblr exactly to your requirements.
One of the great examples is with Heineken where they have gone out and done something that they cannot achieve on any other social network. Red Bull is another good example.
Does the fact that “it’s not about you” on Tumblr – whereas it’s all self-centric on Facebook, Instagram, etc – affect the potential for cross-platform integration, when it comes to branded content?
That’s a really interesting question. Tumblr is actually made for sharing content that you value with other people. Social networks in general, if you look at Facebook, are meant to be on what I like. That’s the different way of how to look at Tumblr – it’s supposed to be “here’s what I have to share, and here’s what I value.” And I do believe that certain brands can actually include that and use along with the other social networks.
What is Tumblr’s plan for Asia?
Without doing any promotion, Tumblr does have a pretty big following in certain Asian countries. Singapore has a large number of people on Tumblr and a lot of communities. The same is the case with Australia, New Zealand and the Philippines. We just want to get the conversations going about Tumblr, understand what people expect from it and see where it goes from there.
What’s your perspective on the future of online content?
I would actually take it a level further and not say online content. Let’s look at it as digital content, and content marketing for digital.
Currently all platforms use algorithms to define you as a person. What’s going to happen over a period of time is those algorithms are going to become a lot more sophisticated and you will find content streams which are tailored just for you. And that is something that we are doing at Yahoo right now, which is having a home page that understands you and gives you content that you like.
Brands’ advertising is changing – it’s about adding value and making you have a real connection with my product instead of telling you what my product does. It’s about telling you what my product means to you. That’s what we can look forward to with content marketing.