As any good marketer would do, I put 100% of the blame in my failure to get any new customers solely on the channel that I was spending money in.
Then as most marketers never do, I actually looked at my campaign, piece by piece and wondered…could some of this be my fault?
I read some guy’s blog post about how to get monthly subscribers through Reddit Advertising, so I thought, what the heck, I will give this a shot.
Reddit isn’t Google and it isn’t Facebook, so I thought, maybe, just maybe this will get me in front of the audience that I want to get in front of and produce some real results.
Well, the results I got, were real, but they just weren’t the kind of real that I was looking for…
WHAT IS REDDIT ADVERTISING:
Readers of Reddit already know, but for those of you who don’t: Reddit ads look like regular posts, but they are highlighted and say “sponsored link.” They are placed at the top of a page. Here is an example (with Reddit’s explanation moused over).
They are on Reddit
They can be targeted to subreddits or put in general categories
They don’t take a lot of work to get going
They are fairly cheap ($1.50 CPM)
Minimum budget of $20 is affordable for tests
Reports and statistics of the performance are easy to read and robust
They will drive clicks
They are on Reddit
Targeting capabilities can be limited if inventory is low (I tried to buy inventory on /socks and /goats and it was completely unavailable for at least a month
Getting an ad rolling can be a bit wonky the first time around
Customer service is non-existent
Number of clicks in report is inconsistent with my internal numbers
Can’t buy ads on a Cost Per Click plan (like you can on FB and Google)
I didn’t sell jack squat
HERE’S WHAT HAPPENED:
I ran two different campaigns: First targeted to “Gifts for Him” and second to “Shopping and Fashion”
This was the ad I ran:
Here were the results:
If you can’t read that, I will summarize:
I spent $40, got 140 clicks ($.29 cents per click) at a CPM (cost per 1000 impressions) of $1.47
Reddit actually gave me 1,278 extra impressions (between 6–7 extra clicks: Thanks!)
My click through rate of .513 (read as 1 click per 195 impressions) is actually better than I thought it was going to be.
The stats from Reddit were pretty good.
Here is the downside:
Those 140 “clicks” only registered as 60 clicks on my site!
I’ve worked in the digital marketing quite a while now. I get that there is generally a discrepancy between what two parties see in their reports.
But this discrepancy is more that 50% over-reported (or under-reported depending on who you want to blame). And I get it, sometimes someone will click and not wait for the page to load. I will give away 20 clicks going to that reason. That would still put me at half of the clicks not being registered by my landing page.
60 clicks makes a huge difference to a small business like mine. My conversion of similar traffic sources purchasing something on my site is about 1%. That means I would get one sale per 100 clicks. At 60 clicks, zero sales, at 140 clicks 1.4 sales!
If one sale on my site = $55 (current Lifetime Value of a Chivaz customer) then I would pay $40 to get a $55 sale. If I get .6 sales (which was zero in this case) then it isn’t worth it.
I don’t get a lot of traffic on my site and every
So I wrote to Reddit and asked them why:
and this is what I got:
Maybe it was because I included screenshots or maybe they had a full inbox?Apparently so, because the next time I wrote, I didn’t include an attachment and to my surprise, they responded within five hours.
Here is what they said:
Thanks for your email. Here are a few things that may help
A decent number of our users use Ghostery, Noscript, and other things that won’t let them be tracked by Google Analytics.
GA relies on sampling data so what GA reports and what we report isn’t exactly one-to-one.
It’s possible that users went to your landing page, then immediately clicked the back button, so they spent very little time on your landing page. But our system still counts this as a click. GA doesn’t necessarily count this as a click.
Customer service was nice and responsive and even said they would look into further. Hey, that’s great, but that lack of clear information makes it difficult to understand what is really going on. Should I just “trust” the Reddit numbers? I guess that’s up to me because there is no other option.
IN THE END, I DON’T BLAME REDDIT:
This was a good learning experience. I was so excited to try out this advertising, that I just set it up without thinking too much about it.
I made a few mistakes:
My landing page was not overly enticing
My landing page was not targeted to Reddit readers
My landing page didn’t really explain much about why you should buy Chivaz, what makes Chivaz different, which designs you might be getting or anything overly relevant to people clicking there (I wouldn’t just sign up for a subscription for a brand that I just clicked on for the first time).
I was not able to target the subreddits I really wanted
I had a limited budget, especially for a time when everyone is spending on digital ads
I AM GOING TO TRY AGAIN!
In fact, I have already redone my landing page. Check it out here:
links to people that want to learn more about the brand before purchasing
A little bit about the brand to get people acquainted
It is authentically Chivaz
This page is still not great (my web layout skills are non-existent)
Its way too wordy
No real decisive call to action
How about you?
I am curious to know if anyone out there has had success with Reddit ads? Any advice? Feedback? Questions? Comments?
Are you awesome at creating value through web ads? Do you want to work with me? Let me know! I need an expert that either likes to be paid with socks or work on a commission.
Thanks for reading!
UPDATE: I posted about this article on Reddit. I’ve never had more than two comments on a post before, so I wasn’t expecting much. One thing that has become even more clear to me is that I don’t get the Reddit audience. I consider it a good thing when people comment on an article. I got some nice and some not so nice comments, but I am taking them all in stride. There are a ton of personalities out there on Reddit and trying to understand them all is near impossible, but at least now I know a lot more than I used to.