Hi. I'm Rick. I write, advise, and invest.
And it made the Obama for America Tumblr community … an actual community. With all the benefits that can come along with it. The Tumblr wasn’t so much a mechanism of persuasion as it was a brand ambassador — the brand, in this case, being a president. The real power of social, Olin points out, isn’t just sharing; it’s getting people to ask their friends to do things — “because that’s so much more powerful than for us to ask less engaged people to do it.” That kind of action-by-proxy means something slightly different on Tumblr than it does on Twitter and, particularly, on Facebook, where users are more used (and more numbed?) to traditional brand messaging. The sincerity of the platform encourages a special kind of engagement. If Facebook and Twitter — not to mention TV and radio — represented something more like the Big Tent approach to campaign communications, the one-size-fits-most strategy of politicking, Tumblr offered an inverse proposition: the niche, networked.
Rick Webb, marketing and revenue lead at New York-based Tumblr, said in a statement: “We couldn’t be happier with the early success brands have had using Tumblr to tell their stories, and we’ve been honored to work with some of the most creative and talented agencies around the world.”
Super excited to get this program off the ground. Danielle and Alexis did all the hard work!
The great service Timehop reminded me this morning that it was one year ago today that I announced my departure from the agency I co-founded with several friends ten years earlier, The Barbarian Group.
A year is such an interesting time measurement. It is arbitrary, based on planetary geography. It’s a good unit of time to measure long term progress in life, but it’s also a fleeting moment, especially as more and more of them go by.
So what have I done in the last year? How do you measure progress?
It’s been a good year. I’ve stayed busy, but I’ve gotten rest. I’ve been on a fair number of boats, which is always good. I’ve started new things and seen the fruition of efforts from other things.
Do I miss Barbarian Group? Yes, all the time. Do I miss advertising? I don’t feel like I’ve left. I miss my old coworkers. A lot. I’ve met some amazing people this year, but those Barbarians - they sure were great.
But I can say it’s probably been the happiest year of my adult life.
Forget Instagram’s billion-dollar payday. Forget IPOs, past and future, from Facebook, Groupon, LinkedIn and the like. And ignore, please, the online ramblings of attention-hungry venture capitalists and narcissistic Silicon Valley journalists with the off-putting habit of making their inside-baseball sound like the World Series. Their stories, to paraphrase Shakespeare, are tales told by idiots, full of sound and fury, but signifying very little about the impact of technology on most of our lives.
While this is probably directed to my ilk, I take no offense. Most people, including myself, don’t particularly know what they’re talking about with this deal. And we’re all guessing on the future impact of technology.
But do feel compelled to point out to you that the Facebook-Instagram deal is significantly bigger than the World Series by every conceivable measure: economic, number of people effected, societal, cultural. The most profitable world series ever raked in about $50 million in ad revenue and attendance revenue: 1/20th the economics of this single deal. The largest viewership ever totalled 25 million: 1/40th the number of people involved this deal. Americans spend about 12 times more time per year on Facebook than they do watching even a 7 game series. Even in terms of games, Zynga makes forty times more money per year than the World Series does. Most of that is on Facebook. Though sadly they do not have a baseball game yet.
With all due respect, the World Series is child’s play compared to this deal. A poor metaphor.