Why Businesses Should Heed the Power of Reddit

Please give a  Likeable welcome to guest blogger Rachel Hyun Kim! Rachel is a writer on topics ranging from VoIP phone systems to document scanning. She writes for an online resource that gives advice on topics including merchant services for small business owners and entrepreneurs at Resource Nation When it comes to social media, the first things that come to many peoples’ minds are the major players, such as Twitter and Facebook. However, there’s another major force that many businesses are not aware of. Reddit.com, a social news website, allows users to submit content and vote on posts. The rank and number of votes determine the popularity of the content, and whether it appears on the first page.

If used carefully, Reddit can play a major role in your marketing or social media strategy. Regardless of whether your business is a startup or a major company, considering where Reddit falls in your social media strategy can be a wise investment.

What to Know about Reddit

Reddit

Huge Community: In 2011, Reddit had nearly 2 billion page views and over 34 million unique visitors on their site. In addition, Reddit more than doubled their traffic in a year, and possesses subreddits in a wide range of topics. With stats like these, it’s clear that Reddit possesses a large, active community. The community of Reddit also possesses distinctive characteristics: they are extremely generous, with users donating money to both small and large causes. Users are also on the forefront of current events, such as the protests against the SOPA and PIPA act.

Diversity: Reddit is divided into sub communities, known as subreddits. These subreddits can range on a variety of topics, ranging from politics, technology, current events and popular culture. In addition, a user has the ability to create and manage a subreddit on virtually any topic. This feature allows individual groups to emerge within the larger community, allowing a user to find groups that meet their specific interests.

Viral Content: News and content on Reddit has the potential to spread extremely quickly, whether it is good or bad. Memes emerge from the community, quickly dispersing to other sites. Oftentimes, breaking news will appear on the front page of Reddit, merely minutes after it happens. With the rapid spread of information that travels through Reddit, many users will first hear their news through the front page.

How Can Businesses Benefit from Reddit?

Brand Awareness: Reddit is a major source of potential publicity, marketing and brand awareness for any business. A company does not necessarily need to have their content appear on the front page of Reddit. Instead, they can choose to submit their content on subreddits, which have a smaller audience but an increased likelihood of response.

Increased Traffic: Given the huge audience on Reddit, appearing on the front page of Reddit can potentially lead to an enormous amount of traffic back to your site. However, businesses should be extremely wary of self-promotion or link spamming. Redditors are sensitive to pandering or shameless promotion; do so and your post may be lost in oblivion. Instead, focus on content that would be generally appealing to the majority of the audience on Reddit. Funny and informative articles and links work well, as well as interesting videos. If done successfully, sites can see a stream of visitors pour in.

Public Relations: The immediacy of news on Reddit can make public relations both an easy and difficult task.  Many public relations disasters have quickly spun out of control, as offended users express their outrage and spread it throughout the Internet. However, many users also take note of extraordinary cases of customer service and good, with positive stories reaching the front page. There are a number of ways to approach public relations on Reddit. Smaller businesses can create an account and connect to users on a personal level by sending messages. On the other hand, larger companies can create discussions around a topic, allowing users to form a dialogue. If successful, the business can positively influence public opinion, swaying the crowd towards their side.

Reddit can be a powerful tool for a business, with the ability to appeal to a highly segmented audience. However, the challenge comes not from posting links, but from creating content that would be interesting to Reddit users. But if done correctly, the business can create publicity and increase traffic around their brand.