When it comes to marketing on social media, most sites will welcome you with open domains. They want the extra attention and publicity. Reddit, however, is a different beast.
Redditors overwhelmingly hate marketing in (almost) all its forms, and are suspicious of any sort of sales pitch. They also happen to be extremely good at skewering any of your advertising efforts, especially if they can tell that you’re being fake or lying. Sometimes they just happen to hate your company regardless.
So now what? Well, Ad Age has some answers for us.
First and foremost, Rohit Thawani, director of digital strategy at TBWA, gave this little golden nugget of motivation:
The truth is, most brands and marketers are doing Reddit in a fucked-up, horrible way.
Ad Age continues with Thawani’s theory and explains that, “If you’re a brand that’s scared of questions that hint at any weakness…or unwilling to follow up on outstanding questions, just don’t make an appearance.”
Reddit already sounds a little more intimidating, doesn’t it? See when you market on Twitter or Facebook, Instagram or YouTube, people who look at / watch your stuff or follow you are interested in your company and what your company has to offer. Reddit users are scrolling for the latest funny meme, and oftentimes news, but they aren’t looking to be advertised to. That’s why you have to be sneaky, clever. If they can tell you’re out right showing off your brand, you may only be hurting yourself because your company will be associated with annoyance to these users.
You see, the trick to reddit marketing is, well, to not market. – Travis Levell
Levell has been successful with Reddit marketing, and has devoted time to explain the do’s and don’ts. First, he says, “In order to be successful with reddit marketing, you can’t be a marketer. You have to be a redditor.” Sure, makes sense…but does it? What does that even mean? Levell says it means to share the passions of the Reddit family. Share their hatred for advertisement and self-promotion.
So what did he start doing? He started designing content that would fit well among the vast memes and links being shared every hour, and then he would carry on like any other user: posting cool links and up-voting other posts.
It’s important, according to Levell, to follow a few rules when it comes to marketing on Reddit:
- No double dipping, i.e. don’t advertise for the same product twice (at least when it would be obvious)
- Only post great content
- Have fun
- Comment and reply to everyone
- Share new posts with friends
- Be humble
It’s a jungle out there, but it’s a fun one. Let’s explore it together, shall we?