Marissa Mayer And Yahoo Haven't Screwed Up Tumblr Yet

Marissa Mayer Hasn't Screwed Up Tumblr Yet
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NEW YORK, NY - MAY 20: Tumblr founder David Karp (L) laughs after a news conference with Yahoo! CEO Marissa Mayer (R) following Yahoo!'s acquisition of Tumblr in Times Square on May 20, 2013 in New York City. The internet giant Yahoo! purchased the blogging site Tumblr for $1.1 billion. (Photo by Mario Tama/Getty Images)
NEW YORK, NY - MAY 20: Tumblr founder David Karp (L) laughs after a news conference with Yahoo! CEO Marissa Mayer (R) following Yahoo!'s acquisition of Tumblr in Times Square on May 20, 2013 in New York City. The internet giant Yahoo! purchased the blogging site Tumblr for $1.1 billion. (Photo by Mario Tama/Getty Images)

Eight weeks after sealing the deal to buy Tumblr, the image-heavy blogging platform popular with young people, Yahoo CEO Marissa Mayer said on Tuesday that growth continues apace.

"When we look at the amount of content that's being generated, it's staggering," Mayer said during a webcast earnings call with analysts and investors, noting that there are 75 million posts and 250,000 new blogs created each day on Tumblr. She added that the new blogs are "largely being driven by new user signups."

Her comments come against the backdrop of concern that Yahoo may alienate Tumblr's core user base, and the site could go the way of Geocities, a huge Yahoo acquisition left to wither and eventually shut down.

In announcing the $1.1 billion acquisition of Tumblr, Yahoo promised "not to screw it up."

But the number of daily posts Mayer touted on Tuesday is in line with numbers that Yahoo released when it announced the acquisition. Although it's only been a couple of months, it doesn't appear that Tumblr's users have ditched the site en masse as many threatened to do. At least not yet.

Tumblr makes the number of blogs and posts on the site public, and last week, Which-50, an Australian business analysis startup, noted that people have added 4.2 billion new posts and 14 million new blogs since Yahoo bought Tumblr. This represents an 8 percent increase in posts and a 13 percent increase in blogs.

(In press materials announcing the May acquisition, Yahoo didn't reveal the number of new blogs created daily, and a spokeswoman for Yahoo would not disclose that number.)

The number of posts and new blogs, however, only tell part of the story, said Martin Pyykkonen, a senior research analyst at Wedge Partners in Denver.

While the numbers Mayer touted were good, Pyykonen noted that Mayer didn't talk about engagement -- how much time people were spending consuming content on the site.

"It may be getting a lot of new bloggers and a lot of new people creating posts, but what about the people looking at content? How has that changed since you closed the deal 8 or 9 weeks ago?" Pyykkonen asked.

Engagement, of course, is an indicator of how much advertising Yahoo can sell on Tumblr. While the company has made no secret of its intention increase advertising on the site, Mayer emphasized in the earnings call that when it comes to Tumblr making money, "material impacts from a revenue standpoint" will come next year.

For now, Tumblr's continued success may be in Yahoo's hands-off approach.

"She's letting David Karp run the business as it is," Sameet Sinha, a senior analyst at B. Riley & Co. said, referring to Tumblr's 27-year-old founder and CEO. "And when she feels there's a right way that Yahoo can monetize the content and incorporate Tumblr content onto Yahoo, then the cross-pollination will begin."

Before You Go

1
Advice To Job Hunting Women
"Find something you're passionate about and just love. Passion is really gender-neutralizing," Marissa Mayer said on Martha Stewart's "Women with Vision" television series in 2011.
2
The Pie 'Isn't Big Enough'
"Right now is a great time to be a woman in tech, but there's not enough women in tech," Mayer told a CES2012 panel hosted by CNET. "[I] worry a lot of times the conversation gets really focused on what percentage of the pie is women. And the truth is, the pie isn't big enough. We're not producing enough computer scientist. We're not producing enough product designers. We need a lot more people to keep up with all of these gadgets, all of this technology, all these possibilities."Mayer also commented on the stereotypical culture within the tech world: "There's all kinds of different women who do this. You can wear ruffles, you can be a jock, and you still be a great computer scientist or a great technologist, or a great product designer."
3
Tangible Technology
"There's just huge growth and opportunity. [T]he fact that the technology is now so tangible in our everyday lives, I think, will inspire a lot more women to go into technology -- and I'm really heartened by that," Mayer said for the MAKERS "Women in Tech" interview series in 2012.
4
Internet Empowered
"I consider myself incredibly lucky to be present in a moment in time when this wonderful and powerful medium, the internet, is empowering geeks -- and especially female geeks -- to express and pursue their passions," Meyer said in a 2012 acceptance speech at the Celebrating Change gala. She had just won the International Museum of Women's first-ever Innovator Award.
5
Geekin' Out
"People ask me all the time, 'What is it like to be a woman at Google?' I'm not a women at Google; I'm a geek at Google. And being a geek is just great," she said in an interview for CNN's "Leading Women" series in 2012.

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