How to Market on Reddit: an Anti-Marketing Social Platform
Google might actually be the front page of the internet, especially if you use Chrome. But Reddit comes in for a relatively close second at 1.6 billion visitors a month.
And with about 1.2 million subreddit communities, it’s a massive marketing opportunity waiting to happen. The only problem: what rises to the top is completely user controlled. There is no buying your way to the top.
If you do a quick Google search, you’ll realize there is no legitimate, non-scammy way to buy upvotes on Reddit. That’s the beauty of the platform. If you aren’t an authentic member of a subreddit or you don’t play by the rules, your stuff gets downvoted.
The cream is supposed to rise to the top. The definition of “cream” depends on the subreddit. And if you want to rise to the top, you must be a specific flavor or the community will spit you out.
Here’s how to remain palatable as a marketer on Reddit.
1. Be an Expert in Your Field
It may seem a bit cliche, but if you’re actually good at a thing, people might pay attention. This happened to my friend Abel. He picked up a camera one day and decided to invest his time and energy in perfecting an art.
While full virility on the internet may not give you millions of followers, you will get a boost. Abel went effectively viral on Reddit with just one photo. He’d posted to R/EarthPorn and by the time Reddit archived the photo, it received 63.6k upvotes. 93% of users upvoted the photo.
Abel is a genuine wizard with light, shadow, and landscapes. His photography is cream in a world of mediocre milk.
Be like Abel. Be a genuine wizard in your field and you might rise to the top in Reddit.
2. Be Subreddit Relevant
Each community on Reddit is called a subreddit. You can think of Reddit like a file directory and each subreddit is a subdirectory. But every file has its own set of laws governing actions within the file.
Some subreddits have no posted rules. Be careful here. Some of these subreddits have unwritten rules.
Hangout and participate in a subreddit before posting. Comment on various threads. Engage with people in friendly conversation.
70% of the users are from the U.S., U.K. or Canada. If you speak English, you’ll easily be able to engage.
The more you interact, the less like a marketer you’ll seem. You may even grow to feel like you’re part of the community.
3. Remain Anonymous
I made the mistake of breaking my anonymity on Reddit once. It was a disaster. The StarWars subreddit basically downvoted all my content and told me that only Peter Mayhew was allowed to break his anonymity on Reddit.
It crushed me and I disavowed Reddit forever.
Until I got over it a few years later and created a whole new set of usernames.
You’re not a brand on Reddit, you’re a person. Of course, some fields allow you to break anonymity. Abel Rojas and other photographers aren’t expected to be anonymous. But that’s exclusive to the field of photography.
This is another reason why first becoming a part of the community is a must. You need to know whether you can break anonymity or not.
Examine the cream. Do they break anonymity? If so, go for it! If not, remain an anonymous hippo.