Jaws dropped around the media industry when U.K.-based social-data-intelligence company Pulsar released a study showing that Tumblr is driving more social TV engagement than Twitter.
More specifically, the study showed that when looking at social posts about specific shows through an 11-day window (that spanned the five days before until five days after an episode aired) Tumblr outperformed Twitter, and by a nearly 2:1 margin.
Source: Pulsar Study on Tumblr vs. Twitter Social TV Mentions
What’s more is that the study notes that while Twitter remains king while shows were airing on TV live, the Twitter effect quickly died after the show ended whereas the conversation on Tumblr had a much longer tail and in fact, social tv posts increased on Tumblr by a whopping 31% in the hour after the show had aired.
Tumblr's Social TV Activity actually increased after a show had aired.
One important note here is that the study focused on entertainment content and especially shows with cult followings which are known to be huge on Tumblr. Specifically, the shows they studied were: ”Sherlock,” “Supernatural,” “Pretty Little Liars” and “Sleepy Hollow.” Had the study looked at live sports events or breaking news, I think that the results would be drastically different. That being said, the study does point out some things that make for some key takeaways:
- TV content already has a following on Tumblr – this is something that most media companies should embrace more than they are.
- Content owners and Twitter users alike only look at Twitter as the live platform. There are some missed opportunities here to use Twitter as a platform to “bridge the gap” between episodes and to create a longer tail for particularly buzzy content. How often are you using the ICYMI call to action in your Tweets? If the answer isn’t today, you are missing a major opportunity.
- Facebook is the elephant in the room – one wonders how they would have fared in the study (although I have my own opinions informed by data I have seen within our customer base).
So What Are YOU Doing on Tumblr?
At SnappyTV we talk to pretty much all of the leading media companies here in North America and many more around the world. And what is most surprising to me is that very few of them are actually doing much on Tumblr. I think there are a few reasons for this, but most importantly, the most popular media type on Tumblr, by far, is the Animated GIF. Most companies have not figured out a way to work creating Animated GIFs into their existing workflows so their Tumblr strategy remains dormant.
We’ve even worked on projects with hired gun professional GIF creators that get called on during big awards shows and events to create GIFs as fast as humanly possible (or was before us). That being said, one of the industry’s best kept secrets (at least we like to think so) is that we have built out a robust set of tools to transform the Animated GIF authoring experience from something that a highly paid, highly specialized person had to do, to something that anyone can do.
American Idol uses SnappyTV to live blog gifs to their Tumblr blog. See it in action here: http://americanidol.tumblr.com/post/83769903129/look-whos-back
What’s more is that we have a deep integration with Tumblr and posting to your Tumblr blogs is as easy as posting to Twitter and Facebook. So if you already creating and sharing videos, images or Animated GIFs created in SnappyTV on Twitter and Facebook, adding Tumblr as a destination is just one more click.
Sharing to Tumblr is fully integrated into SnappyTV products.
Of course just sharing content to Tumblr blindly with no strategy isn’t automatically going to work. Just like Facebook and Twitter, Tumblr also has its own nuances and ways that users interact with the service.
One easy, but important thing to do before starting, is to search for your particular shows on Tumblr and see what your audience is already doing. You may already have a built in audience ready and waiting for your to engage with them. Figure out what hashtags they are using and who your key influencers are.
Once you are ready to take the plunge and get started with Tumblr, here are some good resources:
Stay tuned for more posts to come on my other key takeaways from the Pulsar study. And as always, if you want to learn more about our Tumblr Integration, Animated GIF creator or anything else, do not hesitate to reach out at firstname.lastname@example.org.