May 20, 2020

Started experimenting with Reddit Ads

Andrea Bosoni @andreboso

Last month I’ve been playing around with Reddit Ads to see how much it would cost to acquire a new subscriber.

Nothing serious, just investing a few bucks to try an ad platform I’ve rarely used before.

The first thing I did was creating a conversion campaign and testing different creatives.

Redditors hate ads, so the goal was to make them look as native as possible:

  • No thumbnail, image or CTA
  • First person writing
  • Not trying to sell anything

Example: “I’m writing one new case study every week to help you get better at marketing”.

I then targeted relevant subreddits (startups, entrepreneur and marketing), added a filter for Tier 1 countries and launched the campaign 🚀

After a few days I took a look at the results.

Average CPC was around $0.10 and CTR 0.3%. But what really stood out was the CPL: I was able to acquire new email subscribers from Tier 1 countries for around $2 each.

Digging deeper, I was surprised to see where signups were coming from. Only a few were from the US, while the majority were from Canada, Australia and Netherlands.

I guess the US numbers were so low because I’was bidding at $0.10/click and I wasn’t competitive enough in that auction.

In the future, I could create a separate ad set for US only with a $0.20 bid.

Is a $2 CPL good? Well, I can't determine the LTV of a subscriber because I’m not selling anything right now.

But let’s say that I create a product and that 1/20 buy it. That would mean a $40 CPA. Any LTV higher than that would work.

  1. 4

    Hey Andrea. Thanks for the insights.
    I tried to become a part of Reddit but I was never successful 😅 I think it is just not mine.
    So one day I closed it once and forever. I do not plan to try the paid ads too.

    You create unique top-notch content. I think you can get Redditors on your list without paying for the ads. Did you try a free promotion yet?

    1. 4

      Ha, Reddit is tough. I did a few experiments a couple of years ago and I was able to create some posts that got traction (hundreds of upvotes and tens of comments) but the moment I tried to put a link in them I got banned 😅

      1. 2


    2. 3

      I find that with Reddit most of the subs that you would want to target have rules against self-promotion and mods that aggressively remove posts and ban users.

  2. 2

    Congratulations Andrea. Just subscribed!

    Reddit is one of those great spaces to advertise, if you’re genuine and relevant you’ll do well. I think you’re proving that.

    Curious if you’ve had any feedback from the companies you’ve reviewed? Are they open to the suggestions / critique.

    1. 1

      Thank you Rufus! Haha everyone reacts differently.

      One founder wrote me back after a few weeks telling me that he implemented my suggestions and their numbers were definitely going up! 🙂

      Another one didn’t particularly appreciate my criticism and stopped responding to my emails 😂

      1. 1

        Hahahah, blimey.

        I've wanted to work on a similar type of content and critique some websites/examples. I've always felt a little awkward / concerned how it'll be taken.

        Love that you're marching through anyway and excited to be a part of the newsletter. 👍🏼

  3. 1

    I love Reddit, but there's also a lot of other platforms that are Q&A-ing now, like Quora!

    Underrated tip:
    You could find trending meme formats on Reddit and make it contextual to your world, your message, and use it to show a different side of your brand to potential new subscribers!

    1. 1

      I still have to try Quora. Maybe will give it a shot one of the next months!

  4. 1

    I have thought about this as a source of paid acquisition for a newsletter. It seems like an inexpensive way to target people interested in your niche. But I had no idea what the performance of Reddit ads was.

    1. 2

      Yeah keep in mind that results can vary drastically based on how good your ad and landing page are. A friend of mine who tested it with a different newsletter was getting terrible results (like $10 per signup).

  5. 1

    Thanks @andreboso!
    Have you tried sponsoring fellow indiehackers?

    1. 1

      Uhm what do you mean by "sponsoring"? Buying ads on their websites?

      1. 1

        Exactly. Websites, newletters, podcasts...

        1. 1

          Not yet. To be honest, this was more of an experiment to improve my knowledge of the Reddit Ads platform than a way to acquire subscribers.

  6. 1

    I think would be a great fit for your ad also! It has more than 250,000 unique visitors per month, 45% from US, with the same user profile as Reddit

    The best part is the price :) A 300x150px banner on the sidebar is just $50/week or $150/month

    Please let me know if you want to start a campaign:

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