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How to Use Reddit for Marketing

Reddit for marketing featured image
Reddit is a powerful marketing tool, but it's tricky to master. Image credit: Brett Jordan

Reddit for marketing is a powerful tool. There’s just one problem. Redditors hate marketing. If you go on Reddit and act like a marketer, you will not be successful. There are ways to be successful on Reddit, but is it worth the trouble? What’s so special about Reddit?

As social media platforms go, Reddit is fairly unique. More than any other channel, its users spend time online because they are passionate about a particular topic. This is an incredible opportunity for marketers.

However, this also poses certain challenges. Unlike Facebook or Twitter, you can’t simply post content and hope for the best. Rather, you need to actually provide something of value to users.

Here’s everything you need to know about marketing on Reddit.

Should You Use Reddit for Marketing?

Reddit is called “The Front Page of the Internet”. Things tend to go viral on Reddit before they do anywhere else, making Reddit the trend setter of the social media world.

Part of what makes Reddit so appealing is the same thing that makes it a difficult marketing platform. Redditors are passionate about the site and the content they see. Threads are posted in subreddits.

Registered users can read and contribute to the subreddits. They can also vote them up or down. The most popular content will be shown at the top of the thread. You can also filter the content that you see based on categories like hot, new, and rising.

Platforms like Facebook essentially only show your content to the people that are following you already. This can make it difficult to gain traction, especially if you don’t have a large advertising budget.

Reddit allows your posts to be seen by anyone who passes through, which gives you a much bigger shot at going viral. When a post becomes very popular in a subreddit, it can make it to the front page.

There’s a phenomenon called the “Reddit Hug of Death”. This is when a Reddit post becomes popular and drives so much traffic to a website that it crashes.

Reddit Stats

Reddit has 5 billion page views every day, and 2 million visitors each day. This is a huge audience if you can successfully tap into it. You also have access to a worldwide audience, as Reddit is used in 196 countries.

With 6,000 active subreddits, you should be able to find one that pertains to your business. It is important to note that young men are by far the largest demographic on Reddit. Men are twice as likely to use Reddit as women, and most users are between the ages of 18-29.

If this is the demographic you are targeting, it is well worth being on Reddit.

Reddit for marketing stats
More than 50 million people use Reddit every day. Image credit: Oberlo

The Rules of Reddit Marketing

Before you begin posting on Reddit, you’ll need to know the rules, both written and unwritten. It is extremely easy to get banned on Reddit, and your website may be completely banned as well.

If it seems you are spamming the site in any way, you will get banned. You can also get banned from subreddits, even if you are within the Reddit rules, because subreddits are moderated by individuals. You can get banned for:

  • Only posting links to your blog,
  • Posting duplicate content on different subreddits,
  • Asking for upvotes,
  • Posting someone’s personal information,
  • Illegal activity.

Beyond these official rules, there are several things you’ll need to know in order to market effectively on Reddit. Here are some of the key points.

Do Your Research

Before you begin posting on Reddit, you’ll need to do your research. Find a subreddit that fits in with your business, and lurk for a while. See what kind of content the Redditors in the thread like.

When you do post, you need to be sure that it is interesting and fits the theme of the thread. Your first posts should be about building an audience instead of making sales.

Be a Redditor

This is key to being successful on Reddit. Of course, you want to post your own content, but don’t just post your content. Be a regular Redditor more often than not. Posting interesting content will gain your karma points and a good reputation on the site.

You should only post links to your own site once every few weeks. It can be tempting to see an increase in traffic and want to post several links to your site, but it will likely backfire. You should only post a link to your own site in one out of every ten posts.

They will check your post history to see if you are simply trying to promote your own site.

Get On Their Level

Redditors are a more intellectual crowd than you will find on other social media sites. They will quickly see through anything that isn’t genuine, and they appreciate smart content.

Tactics that work well on other sites, like click-baiting, will get you downvoted off Reddit in a hurry. Appeal to their intelligence, and you will build a loyal following.

Have Fun

Reddit users are intelligent, but that doesn’t mean they are always serious.

There are plenty of funny threads on Reddit, and you shouldn’t be afraid to show your own sense of humour. Witty or tongue in cheek humour performs well but fails and other types of hilarity are popular as well.

Titles

Titles also perform differently on Reddit than on other sites.

Longer informative titles get more views than shorter ones on Reddit. This lets people know what your thread is about. Reddit users want to feel like they are engaging with real people, and an informative title can make them feel more connected to the poster.

Reddit title length stats
Your title length on Reddit is critical. Image credit: Foundation Inc

Upvotes

Since upvotes have so much control over your Reddit fate, you may be considering creating fake accounts just to upvote your posts. This doesn’t work.

You need authentic active accounts for an upvote to stick for more than a few hours, so creating fake profiles is a waste of time. It will also get you banned if you get caught, and you most likely will.

Upvotes can change your links from do not follow links into dofollow links. The threshold seems to be five upvotes, but it may vary slightly from thread to thread. Links posted in comments work this way as well.

Text Posts Vs. Link Posts

A link post is simply a link to an external site. Link posts are the best way to gain more traffic.

Text posts are a post that is text that you write. You can make the post as long as you wish. Generally, you’ll want the post to be an in-depth resource. It should have dofollow links and be interesting enough that people actually want to read it. Text posts will result in more links.

Subreddits

To be successful on Reddit, you should be posting in two different types of subreddits. First, are the ones that are highly relevant to your business. However, the more specific the subreddit is, the less active users it will have.

These people should be very interested in your posts, but there won’t be nearly as many views as there are in a larger subreddit. That’s why you should also post in some larger subreddits.

How to Market on Reddit

Next, it’s important to think about what you actually want to get out of marketing on Reddit. There are two key opportunities here for marketers:

  1. Finding great content ideas,
  2. Distributing your content effectively.

Let’s take a look at each of these in turn.

Audience Research and Content Inspiration

Ask any marketer, and they’ll tell you that one of the biggest daily challenges they face is coming up with great content ideas. The more technical or niche your industry is, the harder this becomes.

Effective content marketing always revolves around information which solves your customers’ problems. When you can create an information resource which solves these problems, everything else falls into place.

In other words, any time someone asks a question relating to your industry on Reddit, you’ve found yourself a potential blog article or piece of video content.

Once you’ve established yourself as a trusted Redditor, you can even directly ask your audience for what they’d like to see you publish content on next.

User Generated Content and Viral Marketing

As we noted earlier, one of the great opportunities of Reddit for marketing is that its users are highly interested in specific topics. You can use this to your advantage with both user generated content and viral marketing.

Engage with trusted Redditors in your niche, asking them to review, demo or mention your products. People tend to trust the reviews of their peers more than marketing messaging, so this is an incredibly effective way to distribute your marketing content.

Reddit is also one of your best opportunities to go viral, as this is often where online trends and memes begin. However, it’s important to be careful here, as this strategy can easily backfire, and create negative online PR.

If you’d like help with any aspect of your digital marketing strategy, contact ProfileTree today.

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