I mean, I thought I did, don’t get me wrong.
I thought it was tacky, and douchey, and ruined my browsing experience. I got ranty about it. I lamented it.
But I’m pretty sure I was wrong.
The promote this post features have a couple of key things going for them. First, they’re only visible to people who are following anyways, and second, they’re affordable enough that anyone can use them, but also expensive enough that no one is going to use them on every single post (except stupid people with too much money / brands).
But those people are going to learn fast, when the unfollow button comes into play. It’s self correcting, and there’s no algorithm assuming it knows what you care about.
You have. To follow. The user.
Basically, Tumblr has an approach that I’m kinda loving, the more I think about it and the more I experience it.
Because Tumblr isn’t selling ads. Tumblr is selling a slight improvement to the chances your content will be read. If you aren’t generating compelling content, no one’s going to follow you, and no one’s going to see your highlighted or pinned posts.
I realized this today when I found out about something I would have otherwise missed. It wasn’t an ad. It was content I find legitimately interesting. The pin was a service in that second, not an irritation.
So, pinned posts might work. The tiny, content driven radar ad might work, too.
Because the core focus on anything in relation to generating revenue that Tumblr has done, is that anyone who wants to leverage the platform has to be a user first.
That’s probably the smartest starting point I’ve seen, even in the relatively small world of ‘native ads’.
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