Reddit: A Powerful Asset for Travel Marketing
When appropriately used, Reddit can be very useful for businesses in the tourism industry, even though it's a particular type of social media. Learn more about this platform and how to integrate it into your travel marketing strategy.
Reddit is the 20th most visited website in the world and the 6th in the United States. With 50 million daily users and 430 million monthly users, Reddit can bring its share of benefits. Although it is less mainstream than Facebook and Instagram, Reddit’s format encourages more user engagement, which makes it very interesting. To give you the tools you need, we’ve examined this platform and presented you with its strengths, challenges and the best ways to take advantage of it in the tourism industry.
What is Reddit?
Reddit is a social news website where users can share content and discuss online. It’s divided into various forums and communities known as “subreddits”, which cover a wide range of topics, from broad themes such as video games, sports, and animals, to more specific ones such as video games, sports, and animals, to more specific ones such as the game Civilization 6, the Montreal Alouettes, and wiener dogs. Users can publish content on their profile, and also (and above all) contribute to different subreddits by sharing links, posting photos, writing tips, and asking questions. Anyone can respond to posts by commenting and continuing the discussion, creating a Reddit thread under the initial publication.
To make the best threads and comments easily accessible, Reddit users can vote for content they like or dislike. Content considered most popular or helpful appears at the top of the Reddit page or thread, while less popular content gets relegated to the bottom.
When someone creates a subreddit, they are responsible for its moderation. They present the rules of the forum and make sure they are respected. They may have other volunteers to help them. Only the moderators and the people who posted the content can remove them. So once a comment or post gets published in a subreddit, it’s impossible to hide it, even if it is about you, unless you have published it yourself.
Benefits of Reddit in marketing
Given its social and community focus, Reddit facilitates exchanges between people passionate about (or seeking advice on) specific subjects. It allows individuals to interact and gather around topics they are interested in. Thus, communities can be ideal for reaching very specific targets close to your field. In addition, Redditors (the nickname for Reddit users) speak their minds openly, so it’s easy to find honest opinions on various topics.
Reddit’s challenges in marketing
Unlike other social media users (Facebook, Instagram, TikTok), Redditors do not expect to interact with advertising or marketing content. For them, discussion and authenticity come first. That’s why some subreddits ban posting in order to promote services only. Redditors don’t want slogans or ready-made answers: they’re looking for helpful, funny or compelling contributions. If your comments aren’t liked, you’ll know quickly: the voting system will penalize you by bringing them down the thread.
How to use Reddit in the tourism industry?
1) Join relevant subreddits
Reddit is known as a discussion forum where opinions and advice are shared and where authenticity and transparency prevail. Therefore, you can benefit from using it to monitor what is appreciated and criticized in the tourism industry to obtain valuable feedback, follow trends and gather more information about your potential customers. It is also possible to pay attention to the kinds of questions frequently asked by Redditors to enhance the content presented on your website.
By joining relevant subreddits, the various players in the tourism industry have access to valuable audiences passionate about travel. The r/travel subreddit, the most general one, has nearly 7.4 million members who share photos, travel ideas, tips, and more. However, depending on your business, it may also be helpful to join other more specific subreddits, such as:
- r/canadatravel: for people expecting to travel to Canada.
- r/usatravel: for people interested in travelling to the United States.
- r/solotravel: for people interested in solo travel wishing to discuss and share stories.
- r/shoestring: for people who want to travel on a budget, looking for deals and suggestions.
- r/roadtrip: for anyone interested in road trips, whether by car, motorbike or RV.
- r/backpacking: for people who want to travel with only their backpacks.
- r/digitalnomad: for people taking advantage of teleworking to travel to different countries.
- r/travelphotos: for people who want to share and view travel photos.
Once you have joined all the relevant communities, you can participate in the discussions by making yourself useful. Don’t try to advertise your products: answer questions and contribute to conversations to give advice. Not only will Redditors appreciate your valuable input, but it will positively contribute to your image by representing you as an ‘approachable’ expert who shares his knowledge.
2) Hold an AMA session with an interesting person
Another type of intervention generally loved by Reddit enthusiasts is the “AMA” (ask me anything), often held on r/IAmA, in which a person introduces themselves and answers any questions. You could ask an expert employee, celebrity or influencer fluent in English to do one to highlight your business. It’s a great way to show your openness and expertise! In the presentation, describe the company and focus on a unique aspect of the person’s work (e.g. travelled to 68 countries) and/or skills (e.g. has been the president of their company for 20 years) and encourage Redditors to ask questions. The AMA can give you a lot of exposure. However, you should take time to prepare, communicate with the subreddit moderators, and publicize your AMA on your various networks before holding one for the most promising results.
Here is an example of an AMA from the travel industry held by Scott Keyes of Scott’s Cheap Flights to help you: https://www.reddit.com/r/IAmA/comments/n4mnr3/im_scott_from_scotts_cheap_flights_here_to/
3) Use Reddit Ads for an advertising campaign
Finally, a simple but effective way to use Reddit in the tourism industry is to take advantage of sponsored posts and ads. Like Facebook, Instagram and many other social media platforms, Reddit allows you to target customers based on their locations, interests, device used and time of day, but also according to their participation in specific subreddits. Different ad types are available to help you reach potential customers who are interested or passionate about your field. It could be beneficial to explore this opportunity!
Even if it is a rather particular social media, Reddit can offer several advantages for the tourism industry. The key is to familiarize yourself with the platform before starting your marketing actions. Take time to fully comprehend it and adapt to its uniqueness before contributing.
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