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Is Quora a B2B Opportunity?

Posted by Max Tatton-Brown on 27th January 2011

Where were you when you received your first Quora follower email? Years from now, we’ll no doubt be sharing stories of the first working day of 2011 when the new social network leapt into the hearts and minds (not to mention inboxes) of the UK tech scene.

Have I lost you? Let’s go back a step and start at the beginning.

In simple terms, Quora is a collection of questions and answers created, edited, and organized by everyone who uses it.” Its quest is to be the best possible resource for someone who wants to know about a certain question. It’s like having someone do a Google search for you, read all the results and then put together a summary of findings. Updated in real-time and supposedly by the most qualified experts.

Social Q&A

If you’ve ever used Yahoo Answers, you should be aware of how badly such a Q&A concept can turn into a useless mess of anonymous nonsense. But Quora is different. For a start, it hooks into your interest network from Twitter and creates a newsfeed of whatever questions these contacts follow or interact with. Secondly, it allows the audience to vote answers up or down, helping the cream rise to the top.

Have a look at the example feed below to get a feel for the interface or go and have a look for yourself.

…what’s that, you want a link? Very nearly every link in this article takes you through to a relevant Quora search, give them a try.

What’s the B2B potential?

Most social networks readily make their potential known to consumers while B2B brands need to dig a little deeper. Quora instead has very clear opportunities for brands to really own their subject area and show off their knowledge. What’s more, you can gain demonstrable and lasting respect from peers by creating answers which lots of people vote to the top.

It’s not without its issues though. Brands aren’t officially allowed to join (presumably because this will be monetised later) so the emphasis is very much on what you can offer personally on your subject area. If you’re the founder of your company, this is perfect.

When will we have answers?

So what do you think then? Have you been Quoring yourself out or are you giving this one a miss?

Max Tatton-Brown