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Reddit is a massive social media platform that largely gets underutilized by marketers. According to Reddit Inc., there are 21 billion screen views by its 430 million active users each month. Capturing even a small fraction of these views and engaging with individual users could be a game-changer for many brands.

That’s why we’ve asked marketing experts if Reddit is a good way to engage with their audience, how they choose subreddits to focus on, and what content works best.

Is Reddit a Good Platform for Brands?

“Reddit is a great way to engage with users if you’re patient, consistent and have a brand that is aligned with the platform,” said Quincy Smith, founder of ESL Authority. While pharmaceuticals, oil, or other big business may not find it worthwhile, Reddit can be great for brands that have a target audience highly active on the platform. If brands can find the right subreddits and publish content that’s appropriate for Reddit, it can be a great opportunity to engage with their audience.

“Reddit can be a very branded content-averse platform,” warned Rafael Sales, data strategist at Sparkloft Media, “so it’s important to be transparent that you are a brand.” A selling mindset doesn’t usually work well, but providing useful information or gathering feedback could be effective. “Reddit can be an excellent way to engage,” Sales concluded, “if you do it right.”

Related Article: Beyond Vanity Metrics: Measuring Social Media Success

How to Find Subreddits

“The search bar is your best friend,” said Sales, “you can use it to find your relevant subreddits or at least posts mentioning your brand, literally by typing your brand name.” Beyond that, you can look up competitors or relevant industries to see if there are subreddits with your intended audience.

“To find good subreddits,” Smith said, “simply go on Google and search for FAQs + Reddit.” Using questions your sales team often gets asked, and finding out where these issues are being discussed on Reddit is a great starting point for further research. “It should be a list of relevant posts and from there you can explore the subreddits where they are housed,” explained Smith, “and assess whether it’s a good fit for your brand.”

What Content Works Best?

While finding subreddits can be challenging, it’s even harder to publish content or ads that appeal to Redditers. 

Individual Posts

“To start, you want to be as helpful as possible and make it known you’re working for a brand,” Smith said. Redditers value transparency and don’t want to sift through ads disguised as normal posts. “We’ve seen success posting an entire blog post as a response and then linking to the original post at the very end,” continued Smith, “this is almost always well received compared to check out this link.”

“Each subreddit harbors a community that is unique,” added Shayan Fatani, digital marketing strategist at PureVPN. That’s why she believes it’s crucial to curate content using the tone within each subreddit brands decide to target, whether it’s professional, casual, humorous or sarcastic.

Ask Me Anything (AMA)

“If you’re a well known brand then AMAs could work for you too,” Smith said. As long as you answer questions honestly, AMAs can be an opportunity to show off your company culture and brand personality. “The worst AMAs are those where they refuse to answer questions,” Smith added, “don't be that company.”

“Organically, AMAs are a great way to field questions and let people know about any products you have coming up,” said Sales. It’s best to approach these without a selling mindset, but rather to speak directly with Redditers about their pain points and gauge their interest in your industry or market segment. “Similarly,” he said, “having a brand account that responds to people’s questions in other threads is an easy way to connect with individuals.”

Reddit Ads

“You can use Reddit paid ads since there is relatively less competition on the platform, thus you can expect a good click-through-rate (CTR),” Fatani said. Platforms like Facebook and Instagram are already saturated by B2B and B2C brands, but Reddit is largely untapped. 

Sales agreed, “Brands can use sponsored banners, sponsored posts and sponsored trending topics as simple entry ways (which Reddit makes easy with support).” They’re transparent about their purpose, but still relevant for a particular subreddit, which can make them particularly effective.

“The best success we’ve seen on Reddit as an unknown company, is using our brand name as our username, offering helpful and well researched responses, and only linking to our website when it fits,” Smith concluded. It’s tempting to force promotional content on Redditers, but resist the urge or it could backfire and you’ll undo any progress you’ve made.