If you don’t know what Reddit is, it may not be a great idea to jump right in and start marketing. This is a community that reacts vociferously to outsiders trying to sell them things. If you don’t spend time to learn about the different niche communities (called subreddits), you can alienate your potential customers. You may be thinking, so what? Well, Reddit can make or break a company….or a person. Recently their interim CEO, Ellen Pao, was largely harassed and belittled on the website after major changes were made which shut down subreddits that the CEO and other top people at Reddit deemed were too offensive. Ellen Pao was widely hated by the community, and eventually stepped down. This is an extreme example of the mob that Reddit can create, but it’s not unheard of. The people of Reddit can react greatly to a post, or turn against the post and the person who posted it. So it is important to be wary of how you interact. We will give you some key tips on utilizing Reddit as a marketer or business owner.
What is Reddit?
Reddit has deemed itself “the Front Page of the Internet”. I spend countless hours on the various subreddits that cover topics like personal finance, entrepreneurship, marketing, and camping. But this is just a sliver of the subreddits that are out there. Companies make their own subreddits, though they may not get much traction. Anyone can create a subreddit on just about anything. There are ones covering nail art, cute animal photos, things that are mildly infuriating, history, and much more. Once you find a subreddit that interests you, don’t be surprised if you find yourself checking it multiple times a day, especially if it is an active community.
Reddit is a user-driven community. Users post links or written posts, and other users vote it up or down, and can comment. The comments are probably the best part about Reddit. This is where you will likely be interacting with your business’s audience.
How can I utilize it?
Now that you know what Reddit is, how can you utilize it for your own selfish, capitalistic motives? (Don’t be surprised if you post straight out trying to sell your product or service and get comments similar to this tone). Well, first off, as a user of Reddit, I would highly advise against outright selling your product or service. This won’t go well! You will need to spend time finding subreddits that your ideal audience hangs out in. Then spend some more time figuring out what they talk about, what they like, and what they don’t like. It will take time! Do it well and your business could gains tons of new customers.
Your best bet would be commenting, and talking to others in your preferred subreddit. Don’t come right out trying to sell! Let’s say you sell workout headphones. Don’t head to the Fitness subreddit and post a link to your site. You need to craft a text post where you get personal with the community. Maybe talk about your journey to creating this headphone out of your hatred for tangled cords or the headphones always falling out while you run. You may want to spend an hour or two writing out this post. Make sure it fits with other items that tend to get posted in the community.
Another great place, if you are just starting your business, is the Entrepreneur subreddit. The key thing with this subreddit is not promoting your business. Posts that do well here are tutorials, people teaching others how to start a business such as sourcing from Alibaba. Others that do well as success stories such as “Just started my business and sold $1000 in product in the first week”. If you have a well thought out post, you will do well. And like I said before, don’t promote or sell! People on this subreddit (myself included) vilify those who use the subreddit to make a quick buck. One redditor who did well was someone who had long been active in the community with his Beard Brand. He ended up on Shark Tank, the popular entrepreneur show on ABC, and he wrote about the experience. This was a unique post that did extremely well. People on the community remember him and recommend his products. They genuinely like him, and also like his company.
So spend some time on Reddit, make an account, and see what it’s about. Don’t start posting until you know what your community likes. If you need some advice, leave a comment below!