By: Mackenzie Maxwell On: May 21, 2015 In: Advertising & Marketing, Social Media Comments: 0

Reddit's mascotIn Part 1 of this series, we explored how Reddit is different from other social sharing sites. One of the biggest differences is that users vote on what content should be shown. Of course, it’s always important to create content that users will find value in. But never is that more true than on Reddit, where only users control how many people see your content.

To make marketing on Reddit more difficult, Redditors are particularly Internet savvy, do not appreciate blatant marketing, and can spot spam from a mile away. This may sound like a recipe for disaster, but fear not. By following a few rules, you can successfully market to Redditors. The rewards will be worth the effort.

Prioritize Your Goals

With any social media marketing, your first goal should be to create and foster a community. You achieve this by providing content that is relevant and valuable in some way. Whether the goal is to inform or entertain, your content should provide some value. The secondary goal is to promote your brand and reach more people. And you can only achieve the second goal by fulfilling the first.

This doesn’t change on Reddit. Focus on posting interesting content for the subreddit you’re posting to. Provide for the Redditors, and they will provide for you.

Leave Gimmicks at the Door

The only thing Reddit appreciates more than a cat meme is authenticity. Many users pride themselves in sniffing out fake stories and obvious marketing; that’s not always true on Facebook and other social sites. What works there may be a disaster on Reddit.

So, don’t simply insert your brand into an un-funny meme. Don’t pose as anything other than a representative of your company. Don’t post anything that says, “Like/upvote if you…” – that’s the most sure way of getting downvoted. Just be authentic and produce content you would like to see if you were a consumer.

Find the Right Community

As we discussed in Part 1 of this blog, Reddit is divided into thousands of subreddits. These subreddits are smaller communities devoted to a particular topic. It’s vital that you find the right subreddit for your industry.

For example, if your company makes great fitness gear, you might find success at /r/fitness, /r/loseit and other related subreddits. Sometimes, you can find subreddits based on your target audience. Although Redditors are primarily male, companies that make products exclusively for women can find success on Reddit. They can join the communities at /r/twoxchromosomes and related subreddits.

Local businesses may also want to subscribe to their city’s subreddit, like /r/Dallas. Additionally, businesses should consider subscribing to many of the larger subreddits with more general topics, such as /r/askreddit and /r/TIL – which stands for Today I Learned. This will help you get a feel for Reddit as a whole and may open up some great conversations about your brand.

Become a Lurker

On Reddit, a “lurker” is someone who doesn’t post links, but sometimes does participate in the comment section. Before you get started posting things, just be a lurker for a while. Learn about each subreddit and try to find its unique pulse. When appropriate, comment on posts and reply to other comments. This will boost your “karma,” build credibility, and give you a sense of how to use Reddit to your advantage.

Always Follow the Rules

Reddit has overarching rules on posting and commenting, and each subreddit has their own rules as well. Make sure you know these rules well before commenting or posting anything. If you don’t, your content could be removed and/or you could be banned from specific subreddits.


With all these rules, Reddit might seem like a very scary place indeed. However, it is only so difficult because the users are discerning. This means that if you can successfully grab the attention of Redditors, you can find great success. It’s a double-edged sword, to be sure. And like any good sword, you need practice to wield it correctly.

If you have questions about this or any other marketing topic, please feel free to contact Duncan/Day. We are a Dallas-based agency specializing in branding, design, online marketing, corporate communications, and packaging. You can follow us on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter for more marketing tips and ideas.