Social Media 101: Reddit

Entrepreneurs and authors alike are encouraged to use social media such as Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram to promote their product. These platforms are indeed user-friendly promotional tools on an author’s belt in the effort to corner mainstream interest. Among these tools there is one invaluable gem that is perfect for targeting niche audiences yet is largely avoided: Reddit.
Since it’s debut in June 2005, Reddit has curated 1.2 million sub-reddits or small forums with niche interests such as “r/IndieBookClub” where redditors meet to discuss a specific subject. The platform hosts a total of 330 million subscribers (TechJunkie). So why do authors avoid Reddit promotion?

Redditors and sub-reddit administrators are quick to attack, or even ban raw promotional content. Though Reddit has a massive base of users, the high volume of sub-reddits fosters a sense of grass-roots/tight-knit community among these small virtual villages. These users only want genuine content that is entertaining, informative, or useful in some way. This results in a general aversion to the shameless plugging of products. Authors who have met this obstacle are often discouraged from utilizing this platform. But don’t give up. There are a few tricks to making the most of Reddit for authors.

Be active. This is a rule of thumb with any social medium but is especially important with Reddit’s micro-communities. Participate in other redditors threads. Comment on threads, join robust conversations about things that interest you. Share other user’s content. Regularly create your own content that isn’t necessarily promotional or related to your book.

Being active build awareness about you and your book and create a trust among your potential audience. You will also earn a good deal of karma points from being active -this is a score visible on your page, affected by how many upvotes or downvotes your content gets (comments on other redditor’s posts included) similar to likes on a Facebook post. As mentioned before, it’s all about building credibility -good karma means a good reputation in your communities. Being active is hard work, but effective, as seen in ReferralCandy Marketing Manager Si Quan Ong’s recent case study.

Tease your product. Present your book’s intrinsic value to your following. You can promote your book on Reddit, but it must be done with tact. Instead of sharing blurbs with Amazon buy links like you would on the other platforms, write a useful post relating to the subject matter of your book. A good example of this method is our client Ron Franscell, author of ALICE & GERALD: A Homicidal Love Story’s recent AMA.

AMA is an acronym for “ask me anything.” We have used AMAs over the years as a strategy to curry favor and build loyalty for our authors in key niche groups. Ron Franscell did an AMA in r/UnResolvedMysteries, as he is a veteran true crime journalist and author. Rather than plugging his book, Ron presented himself as an expert in true crime and fielded questions relating to the subject. ALICE & GERALD  was used as an example of his experience rather than a product being pedaled.

Here is what Ron’s thread looks like. So far it is at 96% upvotes of 1.2 thousand , and 157 comments.

 

 

As you can see, Ron replied to everyone’s questions promptly and thoroughly. A few redditors even asked for book recommendations from his accumulated works (Ron has authored 17 titles, you can find ALICE & GERALD here on Amazon).

 

While it is difficult to manage a successful Reddit account, it is well worth it -look at those upvotes! With these tips, you’ll find your karma climbing and follower count growing. You can find more of our social media tips and tricks here.

Social Media 101: What’s New with Twitter?

Since its debut in 2007, the application a brainchild of Evan Williams and Jack Dorsey, you might be wondering–what’s new with Twitter? The answer to that question is that there aren’t many new or complex updates from its conception as a combination social media and SMS hotspot. However, there are some key features that authors might be overlooking on the path to making the most of a Twitter audience and book promotion.

Twitter analytics is a feature that every Twitter user, business or personal, has access to. You can find the statists of how users interact with your content by selecting the bar-graph symbol below each of your posts.

How to use it – Upon clicking the bar-graph, a window titled “Tweet Activity” will open allowing you to see exactly how many “Impressions” (people who have viewed your post); “Engagements” (how many likes, shares, or comments on your post); and “Link Clicks” (how many people have clicked the links in your post) your Tweet received. Monitoring your Tweet activity is an important piece of tracking the payoff of your efforts in comparison to the time you’ve spent creating content. If you are spending a lot of time planning Tweets and not receiving any buzz from your posts, it might be time to switch your strategy or outlet of choice. Logging activity can also help you better strategize the subject matter you Tweet about based on which of your posts gets the most traction.

Including a backlink to your website or buy link where people can purchase your book in social media posts is a great way to keep people clicking around your content for long periods of time. On Twitter, you can pin a Tweet to the top of your page containing those valuable links. This author strategy makes the Tweet containing your links the first thing users see when visiting your page.

How to use it – Each time you click on one of your own tweets, you see a dropdown arrow on the upper-right-hand side of its window. If you click on that dropdown, you are prompted by a variety of options: “Share via Direct Message,” “Copy link to Tweet,” “Embed Tweet,” “Mute This Conversation,” “Pin to your profile page,” “Delete Tweet,” and “Add to new Moment.” After selecting the Pin to your profile page option, that Tweet is now pinned to the top of your page. This ensures optimal exposure due to the fact that it’s the first thing users notice after clicking on your page. You’ll be seeing increased book sales and clicks on your website in no time!

Twitter is currently beta testing several brand-new features such as status updates and a new color-coded organization for Tweet comments. For now, you are equipped with the Twitter tools to win over new followers. If you’re still stuck on basic functions like hashtags, check out our blog post that breaks those concepts down.