Understanding Reddit for Your Business

understanding-reddit-for-your-business

When you hear Reddit, what is the first thing that comes to your mind – witty memes, clever captions, NSFW posts, and a plethora of subreddits that you don’t understand? That’s okay, there is much more to Reddit for both the user and for a brand. To navigate Reddit, you definitely need to understand how it works, what content performs best, and how to properly use the platform. As a business, it can be more challenging to find a way to leverage Reddit to promote your brand. Here is an all-inclusive guide to getting started on Reddit and how to use it for your business.

What is Reddit?

In short, Reddit is an online community where you can share content, opinions, and ideas to allow other users to vote on that content. It’s a forum for asking questions, getting responses and learning more about what other people think. The hottest topics rise to the top as users continue to up vote  the content while the not-so-hot topics are pushed down the feed.

It’s a crowd-sourced platform. Users can create communities (known as subreddits) that are completely unique and moderated by volunteers. In addition, users can help improve Reddit by suggesting changes, bug fixes, and improvements.

Here’s a quick view of Reddit  stats:

reddit 1

(Source: Reddit)

Who is on Reddit

In order to successfully understand Reddit, it is crucial to know the audience that is so very active in the community. Here are the demographic stats:

  • Top Regions: United States, Canada, Ireland
  • Top Cities: San Francisco, Seattle, Toronto
  • Gender: Male – 75%, Female – 25%
  • Age: 35-44: 35%, 25-34: 28%, 18-24: 14%
  • Interests: Entertainment, Gamers, Trend Spotters

Understanding the audience will help you craft up the right content to share with the Reddit audience. You have to take into consideration what the top Redditors would find interesting, trendy or up vote worthy.

How it Works

It’s simple, you create a login and a user handle. Be creative people with your username (or just choose your first pet’s name and the street you lived on as a child and voila). Then you choose your subreddit of interest (see below), enter a title, a link or a text post and submit.

Note: for businesses, you may want to include your business name in your Redditor handle. We will explain more about that later in the post.

Users can then check out your link (or post) and either upvote it or downvote it. Obviously, you want more upvotes to help bring your content to the top of the subreddit, but you have to make it a good one. As a community, users can leave comments and up or down vote those as well.

Basic Rules of Reddit

Similar to Wikipedia, there are certain rules that you must adhere to as part of the Reddit community, that’s how they are able to sustain a successful open forum and community. The rules are simple and to the point:

  • Don’t spam
  • Don’t ask for votes or manipulate the votes
  • Don’t share personal information
  • Don’t post any child pornography or sexually suggestive content with minors
  • Don’t break the site

Like we mentioned, the rules are pretty straight-forward. Now, where it may be a challenge for brands is the whole “spam” content. You create really great content and you want to share that content with the Reddit world and that is great! However, if you only submit links to your business blog or website – it’s considered spam. You have to be active and contribute content that is relevant and not just sales pieces from your site. And the next piece of spam should be a given, but do not post the same comment across different conversations or multiple subreddits.

Understanding Subreddits

Alright, before we go any further – let’s get to the bottom of subreddits. They are the little sub-communities that you can create or participate in that help further divide and categorize the content or post that you are sharing. You’ll want to make sure the subreddit that you are participating in or submitting your content is relevant.

There are so many subreddits, you may want to research the most relevant and active one for your submission. (Note: a subreddit is referred to like /r/subredditname). For example, if you are submitting an infographic that your business created – then it makes sense to submit to /r/infographic, but if it’s all about movies – then maybe the /r/movies makes sense. Check them out and see where your content can stand out while still making sense to be posted there. Your content will be rejected if it’s not relevant or a fit for the subreddit.

Be cautious to not get too specific and submit your content to a section that sees no action! The whole point of submitting your content is to get it in front of people who are interested in it. If they can’t see it – they won’t interact with it.

Creating a Subreddit

Yes, you have the power to create your very own community within the greater Reddit community. It can be for your favorite show, a favorite trend, even for your hometown. All you have to do is click the button “Create Your Own Subreddit” and fill in the form showcased below:

reddit 2(Source: Reddit)

The form continues to include:

Language

Type

  • Public: anyone can view and submit
  • Restricted: anyone can view, but only some are approved to submit links
  • Private: only approved members can view and submit
  • Gold Only: only Reddit gold members can view and submit

Content Options

  • Links
  • Text Posts
  • Any

Wiki

Spam

Other Options

Depending on your brand and the content that you are hoping to create and aggregate, you’ll want to consider whether you should creat a public or a restricted /r/subreddit.

Reddit for Your Business

Now that you have a basic knowledge of what Reddit is and how to use it as a customer, now it’s time to discuss how to use Reddit for your business. Just like most social platforms, Reddit is a great medium to have conversations with your customers and answer any questions they may have.

Host an AMA (Ask Me Anything)

AMA

The /r/AMA allows users to post a title and encourage others to ask them anything. Recently, Channing Tatum hosted an AMA to help raise awareness for an upcoming movie release as well as raise awareness for a charity he was partnering with. It’s a great way for fans to connect with celebrities and brands and respond in real time.

Now, this isn’t to say that there aren’t some risks with an AMA. It is important to have someone as a mediator to help keep the conversation going and on-point. The biggest benefit is giving customers the opportunity to ask questions, get answers and create a strong relationship.

Customer Service

If you have a product-based brand and want to help answer your customer questions, then why not start a subreddit that is solely focused on it. For example, XBOX and iPhone both have subreddits that allow users to ask questions and get answers! Both of those profiles are not associated with the actual brand but users provide the answers. Here’s how to leverage it for your benefit:

  • Listen to their wants and upgrade your product
  • Answer questions that arise
  • Understand your audience better
  • Facilitate customer engagement

Need a little inspiration, here are a few brands who are rocking out on Reddit.

Reddit Ads

In case your business isn’t reaching or engaging your audience enough through Reddit organically, then it’s time to start considering using Reddit ads. You can promote your brand and potentially reach over 170 million users. For a limited budget, you can run a self-serve budget that starts at about $20. With this platform, you can sponsor a headline. More aggressive spending on Reddit opens up the platform to premium ad products and custom programs.  But, we are going to focus on the self-serve Reddit ads.

Here’s how to get started: Log into your Reddit account – using your business name as your profile will help users understand that your Reddit ad is associated with your business.

reddit 3
    1. Scroll to the bottom of your Reddit page and click “Advertise with us.”
    2. Click “Get Started”
    3. Be sure to add an image to your add – that will help users understand your messaging.
    4. Add a clever title – and if you’re running a promotion or discount, include that in your headline (ex: Swimming Pool toys are now all 50% off – hurry before they sell out). You will want to keep it as short and informational. Ask yourself “What will encourage Redditors to buy?”
    5. Add the URL that will direct your users to the promotion. You can’t use a URL redirect, but you can use a tracking code (through Google).
    6. Next up, you’ll have targeting options on Reddit to help ensure your messaging is getting to your target customers. Targets include:
      • Interests – selected from pre-determined groups
      • Subreddits – research the best /r/ for your brand and target them
      • Frontpage & Targeted – where do you want your promotion to live
      • Location targeting – Choose frontpage influencers and then you can choose a city or metro areas.
    7.  Select a start and end date.
    8. Determine a budget for the entire campaign. Reddit requires at least $20 spend per campaign.
    9. Choose to enable or disable comments on your promotion.
    10. Submit and wait for your ad to be approved.

/r/finishline

You know have a basic understanding of all things Reddit (keyword: basic). Reddit has a lot to offer not only for users but for brands as well. When you determine that your audience is on Reddit and want to get started, hopefully you have a better idea on what the best practices are and how to connect with your audience the best. And if you need some help getting started, let the team at Customer Magnetism help you.

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Vicky Simpson

Director of Content Strategy
Vicky Simpson is the Director of Content Strategy at Customer Magnetism. Her days are filled with brainstorms, content creation and promotion. When she's not being creative for CM, she is baking cakes or walking her dog!

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