Experimenting with Reddit - Success, Then Banned

Last Update: March 23, 2017

I recently read an article by Brian Dean on viral marketing, and was inspired to try out everything he suggested.

Well, I created a value-packed post, and then promoted it on several platforms, one being Reddit. I posted it on Reddit about half an hour ago and here are my results so far in Google Analytics:


The visitors are fluctuating between 3 and 7 right now.

So yeah, going out there and actually promoting your content really does work. As long as your content is insightful and packed with value, you'll be rewarded with lots of targeted visitors. And yes, even Reddit works - as long as you don't spam. ;)


EDIT: more and more visitors... :)


EDIT 2:

What? My post was 100% upvoted (9 upvotes), it was showing near the top of the r/webdev feed, I was getting lots of traffic, and then this:


Why? I've never been banned from anything before. :( I thought my link qualified, if not over-qualified, as valuable. I didn't break any of their posted rules. Just goes to show the danger of posting your own content to Reddit I guess. (?)

Join the Discussion
Write something…
Recent messages
laurenjean Premium
Oh no!! This is exactly why I'm so scared of trying Reddit.
Reply
waian Premium
Yeah, it can be a little scary there...but I'm trying again and so far I'm good. The trick is to make sure you understand the rules really well, and to link to your stuff very infrequently. And of course, build up some karma by being active and commenting on different posts. :)
Reply
EConley Premium
I just did a similar thing in Reddit, with similar results.

I work my tail off to make sure every post I make is value-packed.

I have been posting to reddit for about 6 weeks. I have been commenting to others looking for help, encouraging people, generally being a good citizen.

Sometimes when people asked for help I would link them to other people's work, sometimes my own.

I always posted my blog articles to an applicable subjeddit, because they totally belonged. Again, these posts are full of good information - meaty, well-researched stuff,

BUT

I authored many of the posts, and those I authored were from my blog.

To the jealous and lazy segment of humanity - that's self-promotion.

It doesn't matter how helpful, how well-researched, and in many cases how much free bennies readers can get from a post.

If the person sharing the blog post is also the author of the blog post, then they see it as "self-promotion," and they WILL BAN us for it.

I think the solution is to team up with other bloggers and share each other's posts.

I don't feel even slightly guilty about promoting my blog or my posts. You shouldn't either. We put a lot of blood, sweat, tears and genuine caring into what we do.

If teaming up with other bloggers to share to places like Reddit is what we have to do to break through,

I'm game.

Anybody else?

Elizabeth
Reply
EConley Premium
P.S.

I don't plan on putting any effort into Reddit for some time to come-if ever.

There are forums like Pinterest which we can learn to optimize - forums where you don't get penalized for sharing your own work.

Why would we CHOOSE to walk on eggshells in a forum where we could get pilloried for what amounts to "working too hard," but lauded for sharing intellectual property that is not ours?

That's just insane!

Not gonna put myself through that this week.

Or this month.

Or this year.

Maybe next year, if it seems like there might be a return on investment. Gonna have to reflect on that CAREFULLY. Not impressed thus far.
Reply
waian Premium
I've been doing a LOT of research on how to market on Reddit properly since all this happened. I've started a new account, and will be giving it another go. We'll see how it works out...

This is one of the best posts on Reddit I've read thus far: http://www.robbierichards.com/social/reddit-traffic/

I would give it another go if I were you. You can't succeed if you take your failures as defeats.

Hope it works out for you. :)
Reply
EConley Premium
Well, I don't take it as a defeat -

I do question whether it's a good expenditure of my time at this point.

My research suggests reddit is in decline as a place for people to go to find reading material.

Pinterest seems to be tailor made for what we're trying to do. Sometimes when I do a google search in my niche I find the other bloggers' pins before direct links to websites.

Now that makes me sit up and take notice!

When I've mastered Pinterest I may return to Reddit, or I may focus on another forum.

I'll certainly want to read what people with recent success in Reddit have to say when/if I return to work it.

I like your idea of establishing another identity and trying again. I plan on simply using another subreddit. I will still post to that other subreddit, 'cause that's easy.

Actually "work" reddit? We'll see. I'll have to have reason to believe it's the best use of my time.
Reply
DaveSw Premium
Yes, Reddit is a tricky place to work...As you say, it just seems like a lot of work when there are easier paths...

Look at Quora, Bogger dot com, Google+, and Medium as alternatives (and YouTube if you are into videos)...

These will all get you a boost and are less hassle than Reddit.

Cheers!
Dave : )
Reply
cizamazula Premium
I haven't tried this before. Might give it a go. Thank you for sharing.
Reply
waian Premium
You're welcome. :)
Reply
DaveSw Premium
Reddit is a funny platform to use...They are very particular about what is posted and where...Make sure you read all the rules for the subreddit that you are participating in and follow then exactly...

I have some training on Reddit here that might help.... I also have added several posts (and there are others that have posted on Reddit as well here)....

My advice is to have a strategy that is in line with the rules, start commenting on other posts, adding value, and then as you build karma, start adding in subtle links to your promotions...

Best of luck!
Dave : )
Reply
waian Premium
Thank you, Dave. I will take a look at your training.
Reply
spurway Premium
maybe you surpassed the daily allowance of contacting people or adding them
Reply
waian Premium
Nah, that's not quite how Reddit works. I was banned because I posted a link to my own website.
Reply
JMupanguri Premium
That is interesting
Reply
waian Premium
It's been a great learning experience. :)
Reply
ValerieJoy Premium
It's hard to understand why you were banned. I've never used Reddit and not likely to after reading your experience.
Reply
waian Premium
I was banned for self-promotion. So, you basically can't post links to your own website(s) unless you are a very active participant and rarely promote yourself (which I don't have time for), or purchase an ad....
Reply
littlemama Premium
I've never understood reddit and how to follow their rules.
Reply
subnetbuzz Premium
It's not user-friendly, or even the least bit intuitive. It reminds me of a circa 1992 forum really :)
Reply
waian Premium
I agree. It definitely has a VERY outdated look and feel. But hey, somehow it's still wildly popular.
Reply
littlemama Premium
I've been banned at least twice before when I've tried using it, so I won't try again. I just don't get it.
Reply
subnetbuzz Premium
Reddit is awesome! It can be a HUGE boon to anyone trying to get targeted traffic.

But like you found, they can also be very finicky.

Understand that sub-reddits are all monitored and maintained by people just like you and me.

They every sub has its own rule. I'll be making a post on the tech soon and I'll post it out here as well.

They can "ban" you for anything, or nothing. You MUST have been reported by someone to the admins or they took issue with your post directly.

But you've not been banned from Reddit.

You can post in other subs, and you should be able to contact the admins of that sub and inquire as to why you've been banned.

If you agree to fix, or otherwise apologize they might even let you back in.
Reply
waian Premium
Thanks for the insightful comment.

I realize I wasn't banned from Reddit itself, just the r/webdev subreddit.

I messaged the mods, we'll see what they say. :)
Reply
subnetbuzz Premium
I would be curious if they respond, and assuming they do, how they respond.

If you wouldn't mind posting an update regarding your experience, I'd appreciate it.
Reply
waian Premium
Sure, they responded hours ago but I was away.

I completely understand what they're saying. They have to be strict, otherwise Reddit would be riddled with spam....
Reply
littlemama Premium
But that's how people's post go viral, because they post their own stuff so I really don't understand now. Lol
Reply
waian Premium
Apparently you have to be a very active contributor and rarely post links to your own site. I posted the link before contributing anything in that particular subreddit, so I understand why I was banned. Here are the official rules on self-promotion, which the mods who banned me shared:
https://www.reddit.com/wiki/selfpromotion

You can also purchase a Reddit ad, and promote your site that way...but I think I'd only do that with a money page.
Reply
MKearns Premium
Thanks for this good review!
Reply
waian Premium
You're welcome!
Reply
waian Premium
Oh well, looks like my quality post wasn't good enough. I just got this message:
Reply
TitaWorks Premium
Thanks, Waian....
Reply
waian Premium
You're welcome, Netta. :)
Reply
ElwinDutton Premium
I have been looking at Reddit but not tried it yet. Thanks for posting.
Reply
waian Premium
No problem.

Quick warning: Reddit is definitely one you can have a lot of success with, but it's also known for being very unfriendly. You just have to be careful, and read ALL their rules. Some mods can be ruthless when they disagree with you or view your post as spam.
Reply
ElwinDutton Premium
I read a post from some forum about a guy that posted on Reddit an got banned right off the bat. Lol
Reply
waian Premium
Oh well, if you read my updated post you will see that's almost exactly what happened to me lol.
Reply
reanna1 Premium
Thanks for sharing!
Reply
waian Premium
You're welcome. :)
Reply