As a business owner, the easiest path to success is to know who your ideal target audience is.
Unfortunately, however, this is something that many businesses – perhaps even yours included – struggles with.
At the end of the day, unless you know who you are trying to sell to, it’ll be damn near impossible to reach them, let alone try to get them to buy something.
And no, we can assure you, not everyone is your target audience.
Nice try though!
According to Craig Rosenberg, “Content marketing is a discipline where organizations provide their target buyers the content they want when they want it to help them advance through the buying process.”
That’s the reason most marketers pick marketing intelligence or audience research as the first step of their strategic plans. And you should do it too!
Reddit is a treasure trove for market research due to the sheer size of the user base, as well as the diversity encompassed there. From caring for betta fish to dating over the age of 40, there is literally something there for everyone.
So, how can you tap into all of this information to help amplify your marketing efforts?
Read on to find out…
Why Use Reddit for Audience Research?
Reddit may not be on top of mind in terms of popularity since it’s only the 8th most popular social media website.
But don’t let that fool you: Reddit has 52 million daily users, with 48% of them being based in the US alone.
Outside of active forums related to an almost endless number of topics, the platform is also great for conducting audience research. With more than 140,000 subreddits across various niches, it is a true melting pot for learning more about people, as well as what they care about.
So, what makes Reddit great for research?
Let’s break it down:
- Niche-specific communities, which give you the ability to learn more about a specific target group. Popular examples include things like r/LateStageCapitalism, r/Futurology, r/disneyvacation, and r/UnresolvedMysteries.
- High engagement through interactions. Redditors can post text, links, images, and videos, as well as comment on posts and responses of others. This provides a wealth of information about the things people are interested in, care about, and feel are important.
Now that you know the value of Reddit as an audience research platform, you need to understand how to use it for this goal. Here are some tips to leverage it for actionable insights about your target buyers.
How to Use Reddit for Audience Research
Now that you know the WHY of using Reddit to know your audience better, it’s time to delve into the HOW part.
Step 1: Find Relevant Subreddits
With millions of monthly active users and countless communities in diverse niches, Reddit is undoubtedly a rich data source for business owners and marketing professionals alike.
But being spoiled for choice may be overwhelming… unless you know how to pick wisely.
Maximize the opportunity by finding relevant subreddits where your ideal customers are likely to be.
For example, a fashion magazine running a campaign directed at female empowerment is a large subreddit. Fashion brands will likely follow it, which means popular discussions will happen around the topic there. This subreddit would be ideal for retail businesses that cater to women to network and follow.
Planning to launch a tech startup? Subreddits like r/startups, r/Entrepreneur, and tech-industry-specific subreddits are fantastic options to gauge whether your idea is even viable.
So, now that you better understand the value of subreddits, here’s how to find the best ones to suit your needs:
- Identify communities centered around your audience’s interests, demographics, and professions
- Look for the most popular subreddits by tracking their engagement metrics and date of most recent activity
- Read through posts and comments to gauge whether people are even talking about things in your business’s niche
Step 2: Perform Keyword Research
Social media users tend to stick with a pretty relaxed and informal tone, and Redditors are no exception.
By reading through Reddit communities, you will start to learn how your target buyers use keywords and phrases in casual conversations.
Do you notice certain terms and phrases popping up more often than usual? Are Redditers inadvertently using a specific tone or slang words?
This type of insight can help you better refine your messaging so that it truly resonates with the people you are trying to reach.
Step 3: Gather Actionable Insights
Identifying relevant subreddits is only the tip of the iceberg when it comes to audience research.
Equally important is paying attention to the actual topics that resonate with your ideal customers.
Here are a few tips on how to start gleaning valuable insights from WHAT people are saying:
- Use Reddit’s filtering features to sort posts and comment threads. For example, you can filter the New, Controversial, Hot, or Top comments over a specific time period.
- Read between the lines to understand the sentiments of your audience. Upvote counts are a good way to check how people feel about a particular topic.
By embracing these 2 simple and straightforward tips, you’ll start culling actionable insights across various different subreddits.
Step 4: Collect Unfiltered Feedback
Unlike platforms like Instagram, Facebook, and LinkedIn, Reddit gives users the ability to hold on to anonymity.
That’s what makes it unique.
Redditors don’t ever need to think twice before sharing posts, comments, and feedback because there is no fear of being judged or stressed out about offending someone.
Since Redditors can speak candidly and honestly, small business owners and marketers alike can gain unfiltered feedback about their brands and products/services.
By asking questions and responding to comments.
Try posting questions around the topics you want to explore on a deeper level. This should help you better understand the gaps in your strategies so that you can actually start addressing them.
Step 5: Uncover New Marketing Opportunities
You can collect valuable qualitative information from top posts and comments within niche-relevant subreddits. And if you dig deep, you can even identify new marketing opportunities.
For example, you can frame, write, and format your web copy, social content, and paid ads according to the insight you get from popular posts and comments.
Here are a few strategic ways to leverage them:
- Identify topics that pop up frequently in community conversations and use them to build your content strategy. Conversations often start with a question, a factual piece of information, an opinion, or a random query.
- Track posts that are getting high engagement in the form of votes and comments.
- Look for unanswered questions and address them in your marketing content to gain traction.
Producing content that resonates with your audience’s interests and trending topics will stack the cards in your favor, and increase the probability of a prospect turning into a customer.
The Bottom Line?
Reddit is an underrated source of marketing insight, and can be true a game-changer due to its active – and engaged – audience base.
Beyond the sheer number of users, it’s a goldmine in terms of relevant insights about your target audience.
It even packs several tools that streamline the process of gathering data and analyzing it for actionable insights.
If you still haven’t explored Reddit’s potential as a market intelligence platform, there’s no better time than the present to dive in.