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Everything You Need to Know About Reddit

Everything You Need to Know About Reddit

Everything You Need to Know About Reddit

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You’ve probably heard of Reddit but may not really know what it is. Isn’t it just funny memes? There’s a lot about video games, right? Is it just cat photos? Are there any real business applications? You might be surprised to learn that there’s a lot more to Reddit than first meets the eye. Reddit has all those things above (funny memes, animal photos and gaming info) but is also full of news, educational discussions, and tons of content on practically any topic you can think of.

What is it and how does it work?

Essentially a bulletin board system, users can register for a free account and start posting content and stories based on categories called “subreddits”. Once the content is posted, other registered users can begin to comment or vote the content either “up” or “down”, with popular content shooting to the top of the list. Similarly, comments are also voteable.

Even if a user wants to consume content, as opposed to create it, Reddit has everyone covered. Each user has a personalised landing page that shows a mix of posts that are categorized in the subreddits that they subscribe to, which they can always add to. Users keep coming back because they can completely customise the experience and content is constantly being added. Users can find lots of different types of content from lots of different sources (and suggestions from fellow readers).

a screenshot of a reddit personalised landing page

Who uses it?

Most Reddit users are Internet savvy and are on multiple social media platforms. They are comfortable engaging in online conversations and publishing content online. In September 2014, reddit had almost 175 million unique visitors Reddit

Here are some more impressive stats:

  • Percentage of U.S. online adults that visit Reddit: 6% (Pew Research)
  • Largest Demographic: 18-26 males (15%) (Pew Research)
  • Monthly Reddit page views (for September 2014): Almost 6.2 billion(Reddit)

Obama thinks it's not bad

In 2013, President Barrack Obama started an AMA (ask me anything) thread on Reddit. An AMA is just what it sounds like – users can ask the host any questions they have. He was able to interact with Redditors and answer filtered questions through the commenting system. Although presidential Q&As are often done for select members of the press, Reddit gave a voice to everyone to talk to the President. This post is now the 8th most popular Reddit post of all time.

a screenshot of the 8th most popular Reddit post of all time from President Barrack Obama

How can Reddit be used for Marketing?

With the huge amount of content and topics on Reddit (no topic is off limits since users are free to create a subreddit on anything they’d like), this social network is definitely not for the faint of heart! This is one for a more extreme brand that’s willing to take a chance and is ready to take anything that users may throw at them (including some harsh criticisms).

If you’re thinking of just dipping your foot in the water, Reddit offers advertising banners that show up as sponsored links. The banner can link to a specific link (like your website) or to a post on the site. Just remember – a comments section will come along with a post to the site. It’s possible to disable comments but, because these are an integral part of the community, it’s not recommended.

For any advertising done on the site, figure out if there’s a way to connect to one (or more) of the subreddit communities. If you want to sell a product, finding the subreddit where users are already engaged, makes your job that much easier since you already have a receptive audience.

Another option, for those willing to take more of a jump into the Reddit pool, is to engage within subreddits and the community. This could mean searching for keywords related to your brand and replying to comments or the original post (think about your product/service and anything ancillary that might relate to expand your reach). Also, think about your brand personality and what type of categories your brand might engage in (or subreddits your target market may be engaged in). Hosting an AMA, just like President Obama, can be another option. Remember though, users will likely ask silly, rude or negative questions so you have to be ready to deal with those.

If you’re not ready to post an ad or engage in Reddit communities, consider using Reddit for social listening and searching the site to see if, and how, users are mentioning your brand, their attitude toward your brand and if there are any new insights you can gain from the Reddit network.

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