Reddit’s aspirations to lead ‘contextual and interest-based advertising’: How the platform is gearing up for 2024

In 2023, Reddit laid significant groundwork for its ads business. This included focusing on commerce and performance enhancements and setting the stage for a major push into the advertising market, possibly even including its long awaited IPO.

With a (potentially) big year ahead, Digiday caught up with Reddit’s COO Jen Wong and evp of business marketing and growth Jim Squires to get the lowdown on how the platform woos marketers, its stance on privacy and its focus on covering the full funnel in 2024.

This interview has been lightly edited and condensed for clarity.

Jen Wong: First, the thing that is texturally really different is our unduplicated interest graph; you can’t find certain targets on other platforms because users are not actually revealing their interests.

Second, Reddit is really different because it’s rooted in community. You can converse back and forth with a community, in addition to seeing people’s interests that you can’t see anywhere else. You can see what’s happening in these communities in a way that’s very rich, that you can’t see in other places. 

In 2023, we put a big effort into performance and measurement. So across the funnel, we’ve worked on Pixel adoption and measurement, we also launched Reddit brand lift and conversion lift. We’ve done an incredible amount of research with partners. We grow because we demonstrate the value. We’re very performance oriented in terms of outcomes for our clients.

Jim Squires: Tapping into the superpowers of the platform we also have potential keyword targeting, hashtags to the conversations that people are having are very unique to Reddit, and we also launched product ads. Once you start having some great cases and examples that really can inspire others. 

Wong: We have partners for third party measurement too. We created first party because small

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Reddit’s API changes kill third-party Android apps

On July 1, Reddit has enacted a new API policy that charges exorbitant fees to developers of third-party apps for the website, which is having the effect of shutting down these popular apps, including Reddit is Fun, Sync for Reddit, and more.

Update 7/1: As of today, Reddit has enacted its new API policy and charges, and in turn effectively pulled the plug on countless third-party Reddit apps for Android and other platforms.

As we reported on in June (original coverage below), that includes the shutdown of Sync for Reddit and Reddit is Fun (RIF). The API changes have also killed off Boost for Reddit, BaconReader, and more have all shut down.

There are some apps that will survive the shutdown, such as Relay for Reddit and Now for Reddit. Both of those apps have announced a subscription-based model which will allow the apps to continue. Joey for Reddit is also inexplicably still working, but it may not last. Infinity for Reddit is also moving to a subscription-only model.

As confirmed today, both Sync for Reddit and Reddit is Fun (RIF) will be shutting down on June 30. The popular third-party Reddit apps for Android have amassed millions upon millions of downloads and are especially popular among Reddit’s most active users.

Reddit is Fun (RIF) has been an especially popular choice for Android users, as the app has always been exclusive to the Android platform. It has over 5 million downloads from the Play Store. Meanwhile, Sync for Reddit is also shutting down both its Android and iOS apps.

Reddit’s new paid API, announced last month, has been a death knell to many third-party apps due to the intense costs associated with the API, as well as the changes the API imposed. Under the new rules,

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