The demise of the brand site was predicted back when MySpace was still a thing. Few brands have gone through with it, however, settling instead on a brand site complemented with social presences.
Tofu brand WestSoy is an outlier, beginning the process scrapping its tofu site in favor of a presence on Tumblr, where it’s sharing celebrity GIFs and anti-genetically modified food infographics. WestSoy is in the midst moving over some brand site features, like its recipe finder, to complement the more light-hearted Tumblr fare. Once the migration is complete, WestSoy will pull the plug on its brand site, www.westsoytofu.com.
“There’s a huge community of vegetarians and vegans as well as a large overall food community on Tumblr interested in culinary trends,” said Michael Goose, who heads up WestSoy’s marketing.
WestSoy is unique in another way: You won’t find it on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Instagram or any other social platform. With Tumblr, the brand hopes to reach a younger, college-aged user base — which, as it happens, describes 46 percent of Tumblr users, who are between 16 and 24.
“The bigger brands are on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram,” said Leslie Hall, president at ICED Media, which is working with WestSoy on the move. “We have an opportunity to be a bit more savvy and conversational within a specific target audience.”
And Goose isn’t worried about not having Twitter and Facebook to promote and spread content. “We didn’t want to be another ‘liked’ brand,” he said. “We wanted to be something that people find on their own. When you type in ‘tofu recipes’ or ‘vegetarian recipes,’ you’d search and maybe land on our page. We wanted people to have an adventure finding us.”
The brand will also be using Tumblr influencers to help spread the word. For its Tumblr launch, WestSoy partnered with a popular vegan blogger, Brittany of Garden-of-Vegan to post recipes during the month of December. So far, the first sponsored recipe post (which WestSoy reblogged) has more than 1,300 Tumblr notes. WestSoy’s own Tumblr posts have only a few notes, by contrast, though the page is only a little over a week old.