Learn, Teach and Profit
The magic of upvote websites like Reddit is that users vote on which content should be most prominent. Rather than having to check multiple sources, the crowd does the work. This “crowdsourcing” is a huge time saver.
When you’re in learning mode, there’s no need to browse multiple news websites when you’re catching up on industry news. After one visit to the right website, the most relevant information simply floats to the top. And when searching for a specific marketing question, you can quickly see multiple opinions from experts in one place.
Upvote websites can also give content legs that would have previously fizzled out. Sharing content in the right places can introduce more people to your products, resulting in highly qualified referral traffic.
But upvote websites aren’t just tools that give content a boost. If you move past reading begin contributing, you’ll begin to build authority around your areas of expertise.
Even if you never mention your brand, people will still learn to appreciate your contributions and begin following your work. As you interact and help more people, there will be opportunities to partner on different projects and accelerate your learning.
The Evolution of the Upvote
In 1997 news websites, such as Slashdot and Fark began allowing users to submit content, which was then organized by administrators. Later in 2004, Digg introduced the concept of upvoting rather than relying solely on editors. Reddit closely followed suit in 2005.
Now, the concept of upvoting is commonplace on the Internet. Facebook’s Like button was introduced in 2009, which represents an upvote, among other things. It signals to Facebook that something is popular and, therefore, shown to more people.
Here are four popular upvote websites that marketers, in particular, will find useful. Each has its own unique strengths.
The strength of Quora is the quality of the content. Since the website is well established and a trusted source of information, it attracts experts.
Because of this, it’s a great place to set up monitoring. Be on the look out for questions related to you and your business. You can follow topics and even specific questions which makes it a great tool for research and competitor analysis.
As you spend time on Quora, you’ll start seeing the benefits down the road in the form of referral traffic and seeking out your expertise as you explain what you know.
Checking into Inbound.org daily can help keep your finger on the pulse of the digital marketing community. Additionally, the community is generous with their time and expertise, so it’s an ideal place to learn.
Inbound.org is also constantly evolving. The team has added polls, a list of marketing tools and even groups. In a dedicated group, it’s easier to connect with other marketers around niche topics. There are over a hundred groups with dedicated communities for marketers interested in topics such as:
- B2B Inbound Marketing
- Marketing Agencies
- The Pit: Landing Page Critiques
- Women in Tech
- Content Marketing in the Trenches
Anyone can create a group. I host the content marketing group, so come introduce yourself! We regularly offer feedback on content and share our individual strategies for creating and promoting content that converts.
In fact, the AMA (Ask Me Anything) feature popularized on Reddit is now being heavily used on other upvote websites, such as Inbound.org and GrowthHackers.
Reddit is a great place to learn and establish authority, but be wary of heavy self promotion. In a GrowthHacker thread, Hannah Wright explains the issue of self promotion on Reddit.
“Really? How long have you been hanging out on reddit?”
“I just joined but have known about it for awhile.”
And therein lies the problem.
You have to be a part of a community in order to understand it.
Don’t come to Reddit to push products or the community can turn on you. Go to Reddit to gather feedback, be helpful and keep up with industry news.
If you find the main marketing subreddit too general, be sure to browse related subreddits using the right column in Reddit. Here are a few good ones:
GrowthHackers.com‘s tight niche makes it a great educational resource and idea generator. You’ll find growth studies and strategies for low cost and creative ways to market your product or service.
A few years later, he launched GrowthHackers in 2013. To date, GrowthHackers.com attracts 150,000 unique visitors per month. Thankfully, the team often shares their process for their own growth on their website.
All Public Content is Content Marketing
When the concept of content marketing is distilled into its most basic form, it’s the process of attracting and retaining customers using content.
Think of all your public interactions and comments as content representing your brand. Submitting content and commenting within an upvote community is no different. As you learn the nuances of the community, you’ll learn how you can best educate and help people.
Over time, once the same people interact with your content, the positive impression you’ve made will go far in establishing yourself as an authority as well as enhancing your brand
Data collection: All data was collected in April, 2015.