Reddit is one of those things that almost everyone is aware of, but you perhaps don’t take advantage of it.
The best way to describe it is that it’s one of the world’s largest online communities. Think of it as a forum, but with lots of extra features and levels. It revolves around user-generated content, and people come to Reddit to find answers or discuss things with likeminded people. It’s an incredibly popular site, regularly making it into the Top 25 most visited sites in the entire world.
As such, that brings us to the central theme of this article. Today, we’re going to teach you how to use Reddit to drive traffic to your site. To do this, we’ve broken our guide down into four main sections:
- How NOT to Use Reddit for Marketing
- How to Become a Redditor
- Useful Tools for Redditors
- Use Cases
So, without further ado, let’s figure out how to take advantage of Reddit marketing…
How NOT to Use Reddit for Marketing
One of the easiest ways to know how to use Reddit to drive traffic is by looking at what you shouldn’t be doing. First of all, we need to look at the target audience. As a platform, Reddit has quite a specific target audience. Effectively, the people on this site all have one thing in common; they’re looking to be part of a community and share knowledge with likeminded people.
Consequently, this brings us to the first Reddit mistake:
Targetting the wrong audience
On Reddit, there are things called subreddits, which are basically topics of discussion. Each subreddit is dedicated to a specific talking point, and people talk about things related to the topic. For example, you can have a subreddit called ‘Marketing’ where users discuss various marketing concerns, look for advice, bounce ideas around, and so on.
So, you need to choose a subreddit to engage with, and it should revolve around your target audience. Think about your business, and think about the type of customers you’re targetting. For example, if you’re a tech company, then you can utilize the Tech subreddit to zone in on your target audience.
The biggest mistake is choosing a subreddit just because it’s popular and contains lots of user activity. Yes, this means you have the potential to be seen by millions of Reddit users, but they won’t be your target audience. So, the chances of you generating traffic are very slim. Find your target audience on Reddit, that’s the first step in Reddit marketing.
Not following the subreddit rules
Each subreddit has rules that you need to follow while you’re in there. These can restrict what you post about, and you should pay close attention to them. If you don’t follow the rules, then you’ll most likely get banned from the subreddit, and possibly even the site in general.
If you want to know how to use Reddit to drive traffic, then a key point is that you have to become part of the community. You need to immerse yourself in it and connect with other people. By not following the rules, you may as well be waving a red flag in everyone’s faces. They don’t trust you, and you’ll just get kicked out.
Using your posts as blatant promotional tools
Reddit is all about the community. This is something that sets it apart from other social websites; it’s built around people conversing with one another and sharing ideas/solving problems. As such, people on Reddit don’t take kindly to blatant advertising or promotion.
Again, it goes back to what we just said about becoming part of the community. If you want to connect to Redditors and fit it, then you can’t go around promoting things in all your posts or comments. Don’t promote with your 1st post, and don’t promote with your 100th either!
The content you produce on Reddit needs to provide value to other Redditors. You should link to sources, which gives you a way of ushering traffic to your site. Create informative blog posts on your website, then use them as sources when replying to subreddits or posting your own content on Reddit. It’s not a blatant advert for your business, and the community will still gain something of value from your content – as long as it helps them in some way!
The simple fact is that Reddit hates marketing. The people behind Reddit don’t want it to turn into a platform where every other post is an advert from a company. So, posts that are deemed too promotional will get downvoted. You want your posts to get upvoted, and the ones that do are usually posts that contain lots of useful information to help other members of the community.
Straying from the topic
Another notable mistake is completely ignoring what everyone else is already talking about. If you click on a topic about SEO ranking factors, and you start talking about something completely unrelated, then you’ll get downvoted.
Think about it, you’re the newbie here. The people in the subreddits you join have probably been around for a long time. They won’t appreciate some absolute noob coming in and trying to change the topic. It’s annoying, and you will struggle to fit in by doing this. Instead, stay on-topic and join in with ongoing discussions.
Using the wrong tone
People on Reddit can sniff out a marketer in seconds. It’s straightforward to tell when someone is part of a subreddit purely for promotional services. Even if you try and be subtle, there’s a key giveaway; your language and tone.
The way you speak to people should be very natural and organic – almost like a conversation between friends or peers. Pay attention to the way other people are talking, then match this in your responses and posts. If people are very casual and relaxed in the way they post, then you come along with a very strict structure and different tone, then you stick out like a sore thumb. You’re instantly seen as untrustworthy because you don’t seem like you belong.
As a result, your posts will get downvoted, and you’ll continue on your search to learn how to use Reddit to drive traffic. Instead, match the native language of those in the subreddit, talk casually, and don’t put your marketing voice on!
These mistakes can easily be made as you try your best to fit in. Hopefully, you understand what to avoid and why you need to avoid them. By doing the opposite, you will find it easier to fit in and get your foot in the door with the Reddit community.
How to Become a Redditor
You know what not to do, so what should you do to become a Redditor? Here are a few actionable tips to help you get started on this platform:
Start by commenting and answering questions
It’s never a good idea to throw yourself in the deep end and start your own topic within a subreddit. Why? Because you don’t really have any authority, so nobody will pay attention to you.
On Reddit, authority is usually measured by how much ‘Karma’ you have. Effectively, this is a score that you get for posting and commenting. There’s a separate score for both, and it shows people how valuable you are. People with good Karma have received lots of upvotes on their comments and posts. So, you build yourself as an authority source that people can trust.
The secret to gaining Karma is to start commenting on other people’s posts. Comment on topics that are relevant to you – and that you have knowledge of. Provide answers to questions and give people valuable information. You want to help others, and they will respond kindly by upvoting your comments.
By doing this, you gradually gain some authority and popularity on the platform. When your comment Karma is impressive, you can start creating your own posts. People will see your comment score and realize that you have contributed to the community, so they’re more likely to engage with your posts.
Find the experts in your field and earn their trust
Sometimes, it’s good to just float around a subreddit for a time. Before you comment, look at different posts and see who’s commenting. Pretty quickly, you’ll find the experts in your field. These will be Redditors who are always commenting, always providing useful information, and have a lot of Karma.
If you want your Reddit marketing to be effective, then you should earn their trust. Chat to them about your common interests and make them see you as a friend. If you can obtain the trust of experts, then everyone else will soon follow. They’ll see the experts talking to you, and you almost gain a sense of authority through this connection.
Start topics that are relevant to your product
Naturally, you want to know how to use Reddit to drive traffic to your website. We’ve mentioned that blatant advertising isn’t going to work, but you can still start topics related to your product/business.
There are two critical considerations here:
- Don’t start topics until you’ve built your authority through commenting and conversing with other Redditors
- Don’t make your products the main focus of your topics
The best approach is to start topics and somehow link your products into them. For example, you could use your products as a solution to a particular problem you’re talking about. This way, you’re not blatantly promoting your products, and you’re still offering valuable content for Redditors to enjoy and engage with.
Avoid choosing giant subreddits
Some subreddits have millions of subscribers and are absolutely massive. Ideally, you want to avoid these. Why? Because they’re just too big for you to take advantage of. It’s very hard for a new Redditor to enter a giant subreddit and gain authority – simply because there are too many voices and too much is going on.
It’s like walking into the middle of a busy shopping center and trying to get everyone’s attention. There are so many people walking around trying to go about their business, you’ll rarely get a second glance.
Instead, you need to find subreddits that are a bit smaller and more relevant to your business. To find subreddits, you should ask yourself a few important questions:
- What is my target audience interested in?
- How can I provide value to my audience?
- What am I an expert in?
Soon, you will narrow down your options and find a general theme for the subreddits you should enter.
Creating excellent headlines
Each post begins with a headline. Much like the headline of a blog post, this is used to explain what the content is about, but also to catch people’s attention. Headlines are critical if you want to generate engagement on Reddit.
The golden rule in Reddit headline creation is to avoid clickbait. Redditors absolutely hate clickbait, and you will get downvoted straight away. Even if the content is excellent, you’ll get downvoted for encouraging this practice.
Instead, you should write headlines that spur a bit of curiosity in people, clearly state the topic, and possibly include numbers or data.
A few examples of headlines can be seen here:
- 27 Food Tips Infographic
- 7 days till payday: How to make it on $20
- Marketing Strategy for Small Business
Each headline is short and straight to the point, telling users what they’ll gain from the content; simple!
Writing good descriptions
The description is basically the post itself. Here, you describe what you’re talking about, leaving the topic up for discussion. Expand on your headline and make sure you address the points you raised in it.
Now, when it comes to learning how to use Reddit to drive traffic to your site, the description is critical. Here, you can post a link to your website. However, make sure it makes sense and doesn’t devalue the post. We’ve spoken about ways of doing this before. For example, link to a blog post that covers the topic in more detail or can be used as a source to back up what you’re saying. Or, link to a product but explain how it can be used as a solution to solve a particular problem.
Responding to first comments
Of course, after you’ve made your first post, you’ll see some comments. The way you respond to the first comments is very important. Always be respectful on Reddit, and answer any questions the commentor poses. This is a chance for you to start a conversation with someone, which helps build your authority and trust amongst the subreddit. Answer their queries, and pose questions of your own if they add some interesting information to your post. They may raise a point that you didn’t think of, so ask them to expand and explain.
All of these tips will help you integrate into the Reddit community, which is a vital part of Reddit marketing. You’ll never learn how to use Reddit to drive traffic if you don’t immerse yourself in the platform. The only way you’ll ever get people to visit your site is if you build up some authority in subreddits, and these tips will help you do just that.
Useful Tools for Redditors
You can use lots of different tools to enhance the effectiveness of Reddit marketing. Firstly, you should use the marketing subreddit! Here, you’ll find plenty of topics relating to marketing. All you have to do is enter the subreddit, then search for Reddit marketing. Here, you’ll see lots of topics that can offer further advice on how to market your business on this platform.
As well as this, you should use these tools:
- Later for Reddit – this tool lets you look at subreddit traffic to see the most popular post trends in specific subreddits. You can use this to find out what everyone’s talking about, and which posts generate the most engagement and authority.
- Am I shadowbanned? – we mentioned how you can be banned for violating subreddit rules. However, you can often be shadowbanned. This is where you will still be able to comment and make posts, but nobody sees them. The worst part is, you don’t know if you’re banned or not, because everything seems the same to you. This tool lets you see if you’re shadowbanned or not.
- Browser Extensions – if you go to the tools page on Reddit, you can download an extension for your web browser. Here, you can visit websites and directly link them onto Reddit, or view what other people have been saying about the sites.
These tools can help you get more out of Reddit, and the first one is especially useful at understanding what posts work better than others, and when you should post to see the most engagement.
So, you want to use Reddit to promote your merchandise – how can you do this?
Well, start by following all the tips laid out in this guide:
- Find the best subreddits
- Start commenting and replying to posts to build your authority
- Create your own content when you’ve got some respect in your subreddit
- Make the content relevant to the subreddit, but also to your business
From here, you should create a topic that can easily link to your merch. For example, let’s say you’re selling tote bags. Here, an easy thing to discuss is the environmental impact of fashion. Speak about ways that we can reduce the negative impact that the fashion industry has on the environment, then link to your re-usable tote bags as one of many possible solutions. Add other links to other websites and sources as well, so it’s not seen as a post purely for your promotional gain.
With something like this, you’ve created an engaging post that offers value to the Redditors. But, you’ve also seamlessly integrated a link to your website, while making your product seem like a positive solution to a problem.
There’s more chance of people clicking the link and viewing your products than if you just blatantly tried to advertise it!
In conclusion, Reddit marketing can be very effective. The trick is knowing how to use Reddit to drive traffic – without getting banned from the site. Reddit hates blatant advertising and promotions from its users. Instead, it values informative and engaging content that helps stimulate discussions. Keep all of the information in this guide in mind if you want to use Reddit to market your business/products.