How To Rule Reddit Part 1: Introduction – by Tony Burke
When it comes to digital marketing and promoting websites and businesses online, a lot of attention is given to Google and to conventional social media sites like Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn. While those are all important and powerful aspects of an online campaign, they are far from the only options available to you and it may just be that there are easier and more effective ways to get a lot of eyes on your business and to increase your sales and profits.
One such alternative avenue for instance is Reddit. Reddit is a site that can get you thousands and thousands of hits from a single post if you get it right and that gives you a direct route to market and an easy way to find a highly targeted audience.
Put simply, Reddit is potentially just as powerful as Facebook or Twitter and possibly even more so depending on your niche/industry. This is something you can’t afford to ignore. Read on and we’ll look in depth at how Reddit works and how to make the absolute most of this incredibly useful platform. You might just find it’s the ultimate way to have your traffic go viral and to truly explode.
What is Reddit? – A Quick Introduction
Reddit is a social bookmarking/link sharing site along the lines of Digg or StumbleUpon. More than this though, it’s an aggregated content site where you can find content voted to the top by other users and thereby selected for its popularity among the community. It was founded by Steve Huffman and Alexis Ohanian who were roommates and students at the University of Virginia and subsequently acquired by Conde Nast Publications in 2006. Today it operates as a separate entity but with Advance (Conde Nast’s parent company) as the largest shareholder.
Reddit’s mission statement is to become the ‘front page of the internet’ and it achieves this by letting users select the sub communities (called Subreddits) that they want to subscribe to and then showing them the top voted content for that community each day. You can find these at the URL: www.reddit.com/r/nameofsubreddit. As a rule, any content shared to Subreddits will need to gain a certain amount of traction before it starts appearing on the home page for particular users.
If you were to set up your own Reddit account then, you would be able to select the subjects and -categories you were interested in and then Reddit would show you the top content from each of those categories every day. This would likely include blog posts and other external links, alongside ‘self- posts’ which are essentially just text posts that are designed to stimulate discussion within the community. You can also choose to view Subreddits on their own and that way only see the latest and most popular links and discussion for that given subject.
Subreddits and the front page alike have multiple separate categories accessible by tabs which include ‘Hot’, ‘New’, ‘Rising’, ‘Controversial’, ‘Top’,
‘Gilded’ and ‘Promoted’. ‘Hot’ is the front page of that sub, while many visitors will also check ‘New’ and ‘Rising’. ‘Top’ is comprised of the top voted posts of recent time in that sub based on popularity alone.
As an active user of Reddit you will also be able to upvote and downvote content yourself, thereby influencing which content gets seen and which doesn’t. You’ll also be able to comment on the posts of others and engage in active discussion. Each time one of your own posts or comments gets up or down voted this will then contribute to your overall ‘karma’ on the site. You have two separate karma values – one for content you’ve shared and one for comments you’ve posts. Other users will be able to click on your profile and immediately see your previous posts as well as your rating. This way your overall karma can end up positively or negatively influencing the respect given to your subsequent posts. Some Subreddits also have ‘minimum karma’ requirements for posting or even commenting which is a device intended to prevent spam.
Subreddits are ruled over by moderators, as with most forums, and they have the ability to delete posts, to add tags and to ban users. Anyone can create a new Subreddit and in doing so, you automatically become a moderator. At the same time you then have the option to add more moderators to help you manage the page.
Those are the basic rules of Reddit. If it sounds complicated, then that’s only because there is a lot going on under the surface. To use Reddit you only need to go to Reddit.com and read what’s there. On the other hand, to promote there all you need to do is to create an account and then click the ‘submit’ button. Understanding the nuances under the surface though will help you to get more from it, both as a consumer and as a marketer.
Why You Should Care?
So what does all this have to do with digital marketing and why should you care how Reddit works?
Simply put, Reddit is a hugely popular site with tons of traffic and that makes it exceedingly easy to reach a very targeted audience. Any given Subreddit will provide access to only those who are interested in that subject meaning that you can very easily reach people who are interested in your niche/industry.
There are subreddits to cater to almost every possible interest and hundreds that are set up as jokes, as alternative communities to cater to subgroups of established groups and much more. In other words, no matter what your niche or product is there’s probably a place where you can find your exact audience on Reddit.
Moreover, Reddit is also highly popular. As of April 2015, the subreddit for Wikipedia (dedicated to sharing the most interesting pages from Wikipedia) has over 150,400 subscribers. ‘Funny’ is a Subreddit that is shown on the homepage by default and that new users will automatically be subscribed to and currently has 8,229,979 subscribers.
In February 2015, Reddit had 151,712,210 unique visitors. In a single day there is activity in over 8,700 communities. Most days there are over 1,740,000 users logged in.
It’s no exaggeration then to say that a single post, if it performs well and in the right Subreddit, can garner you thousands upon thousands of unique hits in a single day. And this is a process you can repeat reliably over and over again in order to build a huge fan base and following for your site and to generate immediate conversions and profits.
There’s just one catch though: which is that it’s not easy…
Which is where this blog comes in!
Stay Tuned for How To Rule Reddit Part 2 – Identifying Your Audience.