Reddit, 9GAG, 4Chan.. Online social communities on which people can share all kinds of stuff they find interesting are getting larger every day. Members of these websites sincerely experience that membership as being part of a community. The enormous amount of unique visitors on Reddit (174 million per month) enables this community to really leave a footprint on the internet. For example: Reddit gained huge publicity when it played an important role during the SOPA blackout in 2012, in which Reddit temporarily closed their content to redirect users to a message opposing the proposed legislation. This action illustrates the power these internet communities have.
Potential e-commerce goldmine
Wikipedia’s definition of Reddit:
“Reddit is an entertainment, social networking and news website where registered community members can submit content, such as text posts or direct links. Registered users can then vote submissions “up” or “down” to organize the posts and determine their position on the site’s pages. Content entries are organized by areas of interest called “subreddits”.
Here are some more Reddit-facts and figures (for the year 2014):
- 71.25 billion pageviews
- Over 8 thousand active communities
- 54.9 million posts and submissions
- 535 million comments
- 3.73 billion link votes
- 2.01 billion comment votes
Every website owner in the world should want to get a share of this huge amount of traffic. Some are definitely trying, but too often the ethical dimension is overlooked in that sense. Spamming, for instance, will only affect your brand/website negatively, will cost you your membership, and can potentially place your company in the demolition path of an ill-wanting community! *GASP*.
But not to worry! Of course there are ways to positively approach this potential webtraffic goldmine, without risking the oh so unlikely community-driven downfall of your company. For the remainder of this post: keep in mind that we’re talking about trying to get your link “upvoted” in Reddit!
Like all emarketing practices, there are rules to using Reddit as a marketing channel. Not only should your marketing efforts be ethically correct, but there is one thing that you should always remember when throwing yourself at Reddit: you’re dealing with people who are looking for something, and who are expecting to find it in the places (subreddits) they visit.
This gives you an idea of how many different subreddits there are, in all sorts of fields. Other, more serious subreddits can be for example about technology, webmarketing, or politics. At the moment of writing this post there are 589,093 available subreddits. The main rule to take away from this is that you, as a company, should find your audience inside that vast amount of available subreddits and try to add value. It’ll take some time, but like in any other type of advertising, targeting is key! Remember: the smaller the subreddit, the easier it is to get to the subreddit’s own front-page and realise exposure.
Get to know your audience and vice-versa
Conversation is the magic word here. Adding the previously mentioned value is done through commenting intensively and taking part in meaningful conversation about the subjects relevant in the subreddit, thus relevant to your company/website. Comment on submissions and give helpful advice where people ask for it. Build your reputation by being active and purposely giving your legitimate opinion.
Once you have established a good reputation you can slowly start to put your own stuff out there. People will recognise you from your previous activity, and will value your input the same way they did your comments and advice. In other words: your posts/links will be more likely to be upvoted when people think you, as a member, have added value to the community itself.
“I’ve submitted my link. Now what?”
Once you’ve submitted your link, make sure you keep monitoring (potential) comments. If people have questions about your link – give them answers. More comments give you more exposure, more credibility, and make the post more likely to be voted up.
There it is! The ultimate guide to traffic generation through traffic. There’s some work to put in before you’ll be able to realise good traffic, but it’s definitely worth it. Now it’s time to try it yourself!