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27 Brilliant Bloggers Talk About Tumblr


Brilliant Bloggers is a bi-weekly series here at NMX where we look at the best posts from around the web all surrounding a specific topic. Every other week, we’ll feature a brilliant blogger, along with a huge list of more resources where you can learn about the topic. You can see more Brilliant Blogger posts or learn how to submit your link for an upcoming edition here.

This Week’s Topic: Tumblr

I feel like those of us who use WordPress and Blogger sometimes treat Tumblr like the red-headed stepchild of blogging platforms. It’s true that there are definitely a lot less…shall we say professional…bloggers using Tumblr, but there are also some really cool Tumblr blogs as well as people who very successfully supplement their main WordPress/Blogger blog with a Tumblr blog.

So today’s Brilliant Blogger is all about Tumblr. How are bloggers using Tumblr? What are some best practices and tips for this platform? Why Tumblr over WordPress and Blogger? All this – and more – can be found in this week’s list below!

Brilliant Blogger of the Week:

10 Useful Tumblr Tips That New Users Need to Know by Bakari Chavanu

Never mind that this post is over a year old. If you’re new to Tumblr, it’s the perfect place to start. The author of this post, Bakari Chavanu, writes,

I’m absolutely hooked on Tumblr. I found my way back there recently, and in two days I managed to post 45 blogs – some reblogs, some quotes, a few long form essays, and lots of image posts. I don’t know what the appeal to Tumblr is over other similar blogging sites such as Posterous or WordPress, but I’ve caught the Tumblr bug and I have learned some things that might not be so obvious to those who are new to the fastest growing  microblogging site.

His tips are the beginner’s guide that Tumblr so desperately needs for new users. If you’re used to using WordPress or Blogger, using Tumblr isn’t going to come naturally. But once you do start using it – especially after checking out Bakari’s tips – you’ll find that it really does become second-nature in a hurry.

If you love his post, don’t forget to follow Bakari on Twitter at @bakarichavanu.

Even More Brilliant Advice:

  1. 5 Tumblr Tips for Microblogging Success by Megan O’Neill (@maoneill)
  2. 6 Tips for Tumblr Beginners by Anna Attkisson (@akattkisson)
  3. 10 Tips for Awesome Tumblr Theme Design by Joshua Johnson (@designshack)
  4. 11 Tumblr Tips for Power Users by Christin Erickson (@christerickson)
  5. 60 Brands Using Tumblr by Jason Keath (@jasonkeath)
  6. A Complete Guide To Tumblr by Cameron Chapman (@cameron_chapman)
  7. Build Your List on Tumblr by Rebekah Henson
  8. Change your URL Tumblr by Tumblr Academy
  9. How To Choose a Good Tumblr Name by Tumblring (@tumblring)
  10. How to Gain Followers on Tumblr and Blogger by Isabelle Wuilloud
  11. How to Make Money on Tumblr by Sara Hottman
  12. How to Make Money with Tumblr by Tumble Guy
  13. How to Start Using Tumblr by Erica Schrag (@ericanschrag)
  14. Impressive Tumblr Customizations by Jad Limcaco (@designinformer)
  15. Love Tumblr Themes? 3 Questions To Ask Before Installing One by Darnell Clayton (@Darnell)
  16. PiercingMetal & Social Networking: Tumblr by Ken Pierce (@piercingmetal)
  17. The 10 Benefits of Using Tumblr For Your Business by Social Media Magic (@smmagic)
  18. The 10 Most Amazing Free Tumblr Themes by Simon Slangen (@simonslangen)
  19. Three Tumblr Tricks by Henry Cooke (@henrycooke)
  20. Tips for Using Tumblr for Small Business Brand Marketing by Yo Noguchi
  21. Tumblr Guide 101: Tips And Tricks For Building Your Site, Posting And More by Thomas Houston (@thomashouston)
  22. Tumblr Tips for Writers by Jason Boog (@jasonboog)
  23. Tumblr Tips From Tumblr’s Founder by The New York Times
  24. Tumblr vs. WordPress vs. Blogger: Fight! by Damian Roskill (@Droskill)
  25. WordPress vs Tumblr by Jerson Calanuga
  26. WordPress vs Tumblr – Choosing the Right Blogging Platform for Your Clients by Robert Bowen (@rob_e_bowen)

Did I miss your post or a post by someone you know about Tumblr? Unintentional! Help me out by leaving a comment below with the link.

Next Brilliant Blogger Topic: Podcasting Gear

I’d love to include a link to your post in our next installment– and if you head to the Brilliant Bloggers Schedule, you can see even more upcoming posts. We all have something to learn from one another, so please don’t be shy! Head to the schedule today to learn how to submit your post so I won’t miss it.

Tumblr Reaches 10 Billion Post Mark


As TechCrunch writer MC Siegler logged into his Tumblr account this morning where he operates his personal blog from, he noticed a little something at the top of his dashboard. It read “We’ve just hit our 10 billionth post! Thank you so much for being a part of this awesome journey”.

The number 10 billion is amazing in and of itself, but the fact that they went from 1 billion to 10 billion posts in just one year is phenomenal. In 2007, Tumblr launched as the first microblogging/sharing platform.

Here are some other impressive numbers:

  • Just last July Tumblr was seeing 1.5 billion pageviews a month and now they’re at at billion
  • Tumblr says they are now at 28.5 million blogs, doing around 36 million posts a day
  • They are about to close on a round of funding that should value them near $1 billion

Some features of Tumblr include hundreds of themes to choose from, the choice to create your own themes, mobileability, custom domains and the ability to post text, photos, quotes, links, dialogues, audio, video, slideshows, and more.

Do you use Tumblr? If so, tell us what you love about it! Also, be sure and read Allison’s excellent post on The History of Blogging. It’s a very interesting read to see where everything came into play and where we are at now in the blogging world.

Users Spend Nearly 16% of Time Online on Social Media


Online users spend 16% of their time on social media, up from only 8% four years ago, says a new report by comScore. In 2007, social networking represented about 1 out of every 12 minutes spent online, while today that number is more like 1 out of every 6 minutes. This number doesn’t surprise me. I just wonder how long it will take until it’s 1 out of every 3 minutes.

May Online Time Social Media

The other big finding in the study is the changing face of social media. Myspace was the social networking leader up until mid-2009, when Facebook finally pulled ahead and continued it’s upward growth. Today it is the 4th largest web property in the U.S. with 157.2 million visitors in May. Perhaps even more impressive, Facebook’s average U.S. visitor usage has grown from 4.6 hours to 6.3 hours per month over the past year! Quite the opposite, the amount of Myspace visitors has declined by about 50% in the past year.

Other sites in the running for the share of social media space are Linkedin, Twitter, and Tumblr, each showing record highs in May. LinkedIn had 33.4 million U.S. visitors, Twitter more than 27 million and Tumblr came in at 10.7 million. With this growth and the mass of people joining these sites at a record pace, who knows what the next few years will look like!

Meet the Blogger: Tara Wright, Cheapskate Mama


Meet the Blogger is a feature here at the BlogWorld blog where we introduce you to some of newest bloggers in various niches. Today, we’re talking with Tara Wright, who blogs at Cheapskate Mama. Check out her interview below, as well as the full list of Meet the Blogger interviews (including instructions for participating).

Allison: Thanks for talking with us, Tara! Tell us a little about you and your blog.

My name is Tara Wright and I started a deal blog in November of 2010 called Cheapskate Mama. I am a stay at home mom of two young boys with an unused elementary teaching credential, a flaming passion for writing and research, and an incredibly supportive husband and family. Cheapskate Mama is a resource for people like me. By that statement I mean people with children, financial struggles, bills up to their ears, or even just a desire to scale back without complete deprivation. I have readers who are moms and dads, grandparents, aunts and uncles, college students, and others who are none of the above. I strive to make all of my deals as simple as possible by refusing to make a reader jump through ten hoops to save 50 cents. Therefore, most of my deals are retail buys with directions for replication online or in-stores as opposed to coupon match-ups and grocery deals. I love to save at the grocery store as much as the next person, but grocery couponing is not my area of expertise and it requires more “hoops” at times. My tagline is Full Price Makes Me Angry. I am not kidding–it really ticks me off. That anger acts as fuel to help me find a solution for myself and others like me.

What initially attracted you to blogging and why did you choose to blog about coupons and deals?

I have always been a shopaholic, but having children quickly made me realize that my frivolity could have an effect on the extent to which we are able to provide for them. With a strong desire for financial stability that did not depend on how many trips to Target I took that month, I knew I needed to make some changes and reprioritize. When I started to fuse my determination with a natural online research obsession, I realized that I knew so many other moms just trying to make ends meet that could truly benefit from my deal hunting tips but could never afford to dedicate the time to do it themselves. Anyone can do what I do, there is absolutely no “secret” involved, but who the heck can afford 8 hours a day to scour the web or has the ability to drop everything and jet to the store to confirm a huge deal rumor? Not many of the people I know. So I started to do it for them. I created a Facebook Fan Page right before Thanksgiving to expose my favorite Christmas shopping deals and hot tips and within a week or so, word had spread and I had a little cult following. After hearing good feedback and some success stories, I decided to jump on it and bought the domain name CheapskateMama.net to start a blog.

Most people start a blog and then move to building social media profiles, but it sounds like you started the other way around, by sharing deals on Facebook and then building a blog. One of my biggest problems with Facebook is that I find it difficult to move people from there to a blog. Can you share some tips with us – how did you get your Facebook readers to move to your blog?

I did do that, didn’t I! To be perfectly honest, I had no idea what the potential was for Cheapskate Mama when I first started. It really was to take it away from my personal profile so I wasn’t clogging the news feeds of my FB friends on one of my really good “hunting” days. Once I created the fan page, I was actually shocked to see people get as excited as I did for 75% off diapers and whatnot, so it really made me feel like I had something there. It was tough for the first few weeks to really pull people away from the familiarity of Facebook, but I had to learn not to “give the milk away for free” so to speak. Once I started posting teasers with a link to my site and kept the details solely on my blog, it got easier. In addition, I occasionally love to use bribery– I mean incentives 😉 A deal blog is the perfect spot for a giveaway or contest, and I try to have them regularly to thank my readers for their support and loyalty. Currently I am running a 1,000th post giveaway, and they have to visit my site for the entry link, but they can score additional entries for commenting on Facebook, retweeting, or reblogging VIA Tumblr.

I do seriously love the power of Facebook for my type of blog, because a hot deal can spread like fire when people can’t help but share with friends. Because that is where I started, I will always nurture the connection with Facebook fans. My blog is my home though, and Facebook and Twitter are like my vacation homes.

What made you decide to use Tumblr rather than WordPress, Blogger, Typad, or any of the other older content management systems from bloggers?

A couple of weeks ago, one of the mom bloggers I follow on Twitter stated that she was annoyed to have to write any more than 140 characters. And so it is in our new world–people want the info, they like it to the point, and as fast as possible. Everyone is looking for clean and uncomplicated, and as a “micro-blogging” platform, in my opinion, Tumblr is just that. With Tumblr, I can get a post out with a link and a pic in under 2 minutes if necessary–if a deal is hot, I don’t want to take ten steps to post it.

When I search through Tumblr, I find the most amazing, artistic, funky, and sometimes weird content. I consider myself to be a little kooky, artistic and “out there” sometimes, so I feel right at home. I am very happy with my choice, there are some fabulous Tumblr blogs and I hope to be at the top of them someday soon.

What’s the single most important lesson you’ve learned so far as a blogger?

I have to remind myself daily to stay true to my philosophy and not pay attention to what others are doing. I see the biggest coupon and deal bloggers throwing up 20 posts a day and it makes me doubt myself, my content, and whether I even belong. I am a little guppy in a wide sea! But then I remember something I learned from Gary Vaynerchuk. For it to really be your passion, you have to stay true to yourself–people can sense the BS a mile away.

What blogging topics do you hope to learn more about in the coming months?

I am currently playing around with some frugal grocery shopping with NO coupon tips and features plus budget recipes, and I would also like to start a regular “deal mission” post, where a reader can submit an idea for something they’d like to buy at a deep discount and I will exhaust my resources to help find the deal. One day soon, I will get up the courage to post a little vlog too. But it will have to be on a day that I actually get dressed and have good hair.

Thanks for the interview, Tara! Readers, make sure to check out Cheapskate Mama, like her Facebook page, and follow Tara on Twitter @cheapsk8mama.

Overheard on #Blogchat: Domain Ownership (@bworthey)


Do you participate in #blogchat? Every week, this weekly discussion on Twitter focuses on a specific topic and bloggers everywhere are invited to join in. Because I often have more to say than what will fit in 140 characters, every Sunday night (or Monday morning), I post about some of the most interesting #blogchat tweets. Join the conversation by commenting below.

(Still confused? Read more about #blogchat here.)

This week’s theme: Open Mic! (It was also a day later this week, due to the holidays)

A question I’ve been asked often from new bloggers is this: do I need to purchase my own domain name? This week, one of the #blogchat tweeters wondered the same thing:

bworthey: So do you think one can “make it” with just the freebie blogs or does one need their own domain, etc.?

I’ll ask you one question, which sums up my feelings on this topic before discussing it more. Of all the blogs you read and enjoy, of all the blogs out there make six figures for their owners, of all the blogs you admire – how many of them have a free domain name?

I’ll let you think for a moment.

Personally, I can only think of one that is super successful – Seth Godin’s blog, which is on Typepad. Maybe soe of you can name a few others, but in all honesty, 99.999999%* of successful blogs have their own domain names.

Of course, that also depends on your definition of successful.

Not everyone needs a domain name. I recommend a WordPress.com, Blogger.com, etc. domain name to people who are brand new to blogging, since it gives you an absolutely free way to see if you’re going to stick with it. You can grow an audience on a freebie blog. You can even make some money. It’s a great way to test the waters.

But on the flip side, here are a few things to keep in mind:

  • It’s hard to get the respect of other bloggers if you use a free site.

It’s not like other bloggers are trying to be snobby. It just says that you aren’t really serious about blogging as a profession as much as your own domain does. The cost is next to nothing – seriously, I’ve seen hosting deals for like, $3 per month, and domain names cost less than $10 per year. It’s hard for me to believe that you’re serious about earning money with your blog if you can’t invest $45 into a business…for the entire year. That’s $3.75 a month.

  • You get lumped in with “diary bloggers.”

There’s nothing wrong with using your blog as a personal diary. That’s how I got bitten by the blogging bug in the first place, after all, and I know some people who still really enjoy journaling online. That said, if you want to take a more serious approach, it’s hard to be successful with a blog that’s just you talking about your life. Unless your life is crazy for some reason, it doesn’t really work because people don’t find it entertaining unless they know you. But I digress. Diary bloggers, as I’ve taken to calling this group of people, generally use free sites, since they aren’t concerned with building their blog – they just want a place to vent. Whenever I see a free site URL, I immediately think that it is likely this kind of blog. Sometimes I’m surprised with a well-designed, interesting, informative professional blog, but that’s not the first thing that comes to mind. So, you’re starting from behind.

  • Your URL is harder to remember.

It’s just bad branding to have a free-site domain name. People will forget to add that little bit to the end and be confused when looking for your site. Sure, the hope is that they’ll subscribe to your RSS redd or bookmark your homepage or something, but that doesn’t typically happen on someone’s first visit. With your own domain name, the URL is more memorable.

  • You’re bound by TOS.

TOS – the dreaded Terms of Service. Whatever free service you use has something that you have to agree to when you sign up. They can really limit what you do, from the themes you can use to the ability to put ads on your site to the type of content you post. Lack of freedom stinks, especially as you grow. And yes, they can and will shut you down if you don’t obey the rules. I’ve seen it happen.

  • You can’t control downtime.

Every blog has downtime. Every blog. If you own the domain name and pay for hosting, you’re more in control of when that happens. Sometime hosting gets spotty (especially with a $3 plan), but you can do upgrades and such when you traffic numbers are low, and you can also put up a message to let your visitors know when you’ll be back. Early this month, Tumblr went down for several hours – and by several, I mean like 18. In a row. And what if they didn’t come back? Or what if some of your posts were gone when they did? You’re using a free service, so it’s not like you can demand your money back or something.

  • Your own domain name is better for SEO.

I’m not a pro at search engine optimization, but I do know that if I’m searching for my name, AllisonBoyer.com will win over AllisonBoyer.worpress.com. Sure, you can work on building links and using keywords to boost your search engine rating with a freebie blog, but think to yourself – when you search on google, how often does the result you click on happen to be one of these blogs. It’s rare, right? I know it is for me, anyway.

  • You own domain name is more attractive for advertisers, buyers, and partners.

You just don’t seem as legitimate with a free site. Advertisers are less likely to approach you and even less likely to say yes  if you approach them. I think twice before buying a product from a blog that’s hosted on a free site. Other bloggers are less likely to want to JV with you. People are less likely to want guest posts from you or to do guest posts for you.

Bottom line: Can you be successful if your site is on a free host? Sure. But is it likely? I’ll leave you to answer that for yourself.

*That’s an official stat. That I made up.

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