Originally published by Stacey E Burke Blog.
You’re an expert when it comes to social media and you know all there is to know about posting and audience building on your firm’s Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn channels. Now what? Believe it or not, the fun doesn’t stop at those major social media platforms. The next destination in your online social adventure is one you might not expect- we’re talking about Reddit.
Reddit is a great place to share curated content and is ideal for connecting with other users that share similar personal and professional interests. The idea of Reddit is that users are anonymous and use the site as a discussion forum. Once registered, members can submit content, vote on other content shared, and organize their areas of interest by subscribing to “subreddits.”
To prevent spammers from flooding this site and overwhelming users, Reddit came up with “karma” points which help users identify spam content and prevent it from displaying. Additionally, all submitted content within each subreddit is regularly moderated, as the site prohibits harassment. So you can share your content without worrying about being spammed or harassed- who can argue with that?
Reddit Can Be Used Professionally
So you’ve signed up and created a Reddit account. Now you can share articles, post links, choose which subreddits you are interested in subscribing to, and discuss any topic that doesn’t break the rules.
As a lawyer, you can subscribe to subreddits like law, legal news, and even private lawyers only subreddits in which you must submit a request to the moderators to ensure only actual lawyers are joining the group.
Reddit’s forums allow you to interact with other members of the legal community, keep up with issues relevant to your area of practice, and even connect with other users that have nothing to do with the legal world, but have a ton of questions to ask a lawyer. A major benefit of this medium is that it allows for people to anonymously communicate their thoughts. They get to be frank, be heard, and interact with the type of people they are interested in hearing from.
Reddit Dos and Don’ts
- Stick to the same etiquette and behaviors online as you do in real life
- Give each subreddit a review before you decide to subscribe and contribute- every subreddit has its own tone, language, and norms.
- Read the rules of a community before submitting your information- you can usually find this on the sidebar
- Keep the information you submit factual, and opinion free
- Adhere to an “Innocent until proven guilty” mentality. As lawyers this should come easily
- Vote up submissions that you think truly contribute to the conversations
- Post articles and pieces of information beyond your law firm’s evergreen content
- Report spam posts you come across
- Use proper grammar
- Engage with other users
- Post to the most appropriate community possible- make sure the content you share actually adds to the conversation
- Remember these are humans- ask yourself if what you post on Reddit is something you would actually say to someone’s face
- Provide constructive criticism if you decide to downvote a submission- do so carefully and tactfully
- Post someone’s private information
- Personally attack fellow Reddit users
- Use Reddit to only bring traffic to your website- you’ll get called out real quick by Redditors
- Duplicate posts
- Use time sensitive words like “breaking”- by the time your post gets to the front page, it won’t be “breaking” anymore
- Only post your own firm’s content- this is considered spam and won’t help you grow in any Reddit community
- Use all caps in your titles
- Flood forums with a ton of stories all at once- this could be considered spam and you might get blocked from posting
- Ask for votes on your submissions
- Report posts simply because you do not like them or do not like the person sharing them
It can take a while to get the lay of the land and become familiar with the information black hole that is Reddit. All you really need to keep in mind are the rules, or reddiquette, mentioned above. Though it’s primarily anonymous, keep in mind the rules that apply specifically to attorneys as well such as state ethics rules. As an attorney, use the platform to share your knowledge, contribute your expertise, and learn a few things while you’re there.
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