In February of 2015, Charmin launched a campaign to donate toilet paper to 100 firehouses across the US. They utilized the reddit advertising platform to generate awareness and solicit feedback on which firehouses they should donate to.
Over 350 redditors left comments on the ad and most of the comments were donation suggestions that Charmin was looking for. This is a very high level of engagement for reddit advertisements.
Why this ad campaign worked
- The title was well written and attention grabbing. A clever and simple title can go a long way on reddit. You only have a split second to grab a redditor’s attention and Charmin’s ad title accomplished this.
- The ad was focused on a charitable effort. The ad was not about Charmin and they never directly asked anyone to buy their product. The ad was focused on helping firefighters – a cause that everyone wants to support.
- Charmin’s ad invited redditors to help them make a decision. Redditors love to give input and make a difference. Charmin also rewarded participants with a free coupon.
- Charmin engaged redditors in the comments. Every good ad on reddit should generate comments and the advertiser needs to show their willingness to respond to those comments. Charmin responded to the top-level comments and they even answered a few tough questions.
Our recommendations for Charmin
Overall, Charmin did a great job with this advertisement. It was carefully crafted and well executed. Here are two ways they could leverage the ad even further:
1. Partner with firefighters to conduct reddit AMAs. A notable fire chief could do a reddit AMA in r/IAmA and other firefighters could conduct reddit AMAs in their local subreddits. Each AMA could mention the Charmin campaign and help raise awareness.
2. Return to reddit and advertise the results of this campaign. It is important for Charmin to follow-up with redditors to show how their feedback influenced the donation drive. This will build more goodwill with the reddit community and could provide Charmin an opportunity to offer another coupon to drive sales.
What you can learn from this Ad
The most important lesson to learn from this ad is that reddit is a community and it requires contribution to get attention. Even if you are paying for your placement on reddit, you still need to show redditors that you are doing more than just asking them to buy your product. Before you create an ad on reddit, ask yourself if the ad is demonstrating value and contributing to the greater good.