A brief overview of Tumblr and how you can use it to stay connected with the students in your ministry.
Tumblr’s biggest growth is among young people—20.3 percent of Tumblr users are in the 12-17 age group and 29.3 percent are in the 18-24 age group. That, combined with the fact that it’s quick and easy to use and has a lot of options for offering diverse social media content, may be all the reason you need to get active on Tumblr with your youth ministry.
You can use Tumblr much the same way you use a Facebook page or blog, namely by posting a consistent stream of diverse attractive, multi-media content, like pictures, videos, quotes, etc. In general, posts on Tumblr are a lot shorter than on traditional blogging platforms, but other than that the options are endless. You could use it for daily devotionals, reports on events, a training blog for youth leaders or whatever you like. Be sure to use the community aspect to your advantage by liking or reblogging posts from others.
What’s cool about Tumblr is that if your students are on it, they can easily share your content. Being a witness to their friends becomes very easy when all they have to do is repost something you have posted on your youth ministry’s Tumblr blog.
It doesn’t rank nearly as well in search engines (mainly Google) as, for instance, WordPress.
You have far less options for customization. This can be an advantage, though, especially if you don’t need much or aren’t that tech savvy.
Comments aren’t automatically installed; you’ll need to use Disqus to allow comments on your posts.
You cannot self-host a Tumblr blog; it’s always hosted by Tumblr itself. You can use your own customized URL, however.
Tumblr only knows one author (with the corresponding password), so it’s not possible to set up multiple admins or authors. You can, however, create a secondary blog, which you can turn into a group Tumblr.
In youth ministry since 1999, Rachel Blom is an author, blogger and a resource for those trying to share Christ with youth through Youth Leaders Academy (@RachelBlom).