Forbes asks Brian Solis if Tumblr is Yahoo’s Next Big Mistake

Yahoo! acquired Tumblr for $1.1 billion (Image credit: AFP/Getty Images via @daylife)

Stuart Newman and Monique Lewis of Forbes reached out to Brian Solis to discuss the fate of Yahoo’s acquisition of Tumblr.

The company is in good hands under Marissa Mayer, Yahoo’s CEO since July 2012, according to Brian Solis, principal analyst at Altimeter Group. She will aim to grow the company and on Yahoo’s Tumblr page went as far as to promise “not to screw it up.” As a Google alumna she has seen several successful deals and that experience should help.

Solis is “confident in Mayer’s intention of upholding and cultivating Tumblr’s unique value,” but based on his experience using Flickr and Delicious he remains a little skeptical of how well Yahoo will manage the Tumblr brand and community.

Tumblr’s value lies in its young audience, extraordinary engagement levels, and the volume of traffic and content, Solis said, which is important for Yahoo, a brand traditionally associated with an older demographic. “You can’t buy ‘cool’ but you can draft it until you start to earn a sense of guilt by association.”



Brian Solis is a digital analyst, anthropologist, and also a futurist. In his work at Altimeter Group, Solis studies the effects of disruptive technology on business and society. More so, he humanizes technology’s causal effect to help people see people differently and understand what to do about it. He is an award-winning author and avid keynote speaker who is globally recognized as one of the most prominent thought leaders in digital transformation and innovation.

Brian has authored several best-selling books including What’s the Future of Business (WTF), Engage! and The End of Business as Usual. His blog,, is ranked as a leading resource for insights into the future of business, new technology and marketing.

Contact Brian



  • Brian Solis, Future of Business Forum, Oslo
  • Brian Solis, Future of Business Forum, Oslo
  • Brian Solis, Future of Business Forum, Oslo
  • Brian Solis, Future of Business Forum, Oslo