Quora for Marketers 3 Reasons To Avoid

VengresoStrategy & Leadership Quora for Marketers 3 Reasons To Avoid

Quora for Marketers 3 Reasons To Avoid

In case you’re not aware of Quora, it’s a relatively new Q&A site where you can ask questions and get answers from your network. It’s essentially a social crowd sourcing site.

The idea is you connect to Quora using either your Twitter or Facebook (or both) logins and you follow people and their questions. Then, you engage with people by asking questions and/or answering questions across any topics that interest you.

As you type a question, Quora displays similar questions (which is useful). This allows you to either differentiate your question or avoid asking it if someone else has already asked it.

My early impression of Quora is that it is likely a worthy tool for job seekers and business development professionals and for anyone interested in developing more influence and growing their personal brand. However, I don’t see value in Quora for marketers.

The three reasons I don’t like Quora for Marketers are:

Email Heavy

I don’t know about you but I already get more email than I can handle. Now, I’m getting more email each time someone follows me on Quora. I found the settings where I can control email notices for other functions in Quora related to questions, but I didn’t find a setting to turn off email notices for new follower notices.

Need to Manage More Followers

I already manage followers on Twitter, LinkedIn and Facebook. Now, I need to manage my followers in Quora by reviewing new followers and seeking new followers. I really don’t have time for that from a marketing perspective. Again, for job seekers and biz dev folks, that’s an individual decision.

Too Much Overlap with LinkedIn

Even though Quora’s approach to Q&A is a bit more robust than LinkedIn, it is not orders of magnitude more robust to warrant the additional time required. As a marketer I can stay inside “the four walls of LinkedIn” and accomplish a lot including the value of LinkedIn Answers.

The Biggest Cost of Social Media is Time

The reality is that using social media is very time consuming. As marketers we must use our time wisely by prioritizing a content strategy over a social media strategy. I want to use social marketing tools productively in support of my content marketing strategy and networking strategy. And, while I can see benefit to sharing content on Quora when relevant to a question I answer, I can’t justify the additional time it will take. And, I also see the networking benefit. But, it’s not compelling enough to me to make considerable time for it. If I do make time for it, it will come at the expense of something else. And, I can’t see cutting back on how I use LinkedIn, Twitter and Facebook to connect, share and network.

All of the above sentiment is subject to change in time. After all, when I first started using Twitter in 2008, I had a similar sentiment about it as a tool for marketers. And, I became a huge fan of Twitter for marketers.

As I state above, this opinion (and that’s all it is) pertains to getting marketing value from Quora. I do believe that Quora can be a valuable tool for job seekers, biz dev people and anyone actively working on building their personal brand. I’ll blog about that over at BernieBorges.com/blog.

What say you about Quora as a viable social media site for marketers? I would love to hear from marketers getting value from Quora.

Bernie Borges

Bernie Borges is CMO of Vengreso, the leader in digital sales transformation. He's also Host of the award winning Modern Marketing Engine podcast. His book Marketing 2.0, was an early playbook in social media strategy. Bernie is also a trainer and speaker. He has a passion for guiding clients in aligning marketing and sales for accelerated revenue results. Bernie enjoys kayaking with his family in Tampa Bay, going to hockey games and you'll find him at the gym at 6am Monday through Friday, rain or shine.

  • Steve Stautzenbach

    My take on your assessment of Quora’s is that it is derived primarily from analysis as to whether Quora is an effective site for broadcasting and disseminating marketing messages towards a target audience. And from this viewpoint, thank you for the analysis and recommendations to not jump into Quora with such an “outbound” plan.
    However, I want to suggest that a marketing manager must now be engaged on Quora for a very simple reason – there is rapidly increasing dialog on one’s company, competitors, products, markets, and target customers. A strategic marketer, at a minimum, needs to be listening in and analyzing these conversations. So sign up, choose some categories to follow, put Quora into the mix of info that you ingest on a regular basis.

    Choose when to jump in and engage, as participation in the dialog about your business on Quora needs to be resourced at a level similar to a blog strategy. This probably requires reallocation of that most precious resource that you speak of – time.

    • FindandConvert

      Thanks for your POV. I understand your POV and I generally agree that strategically marketers need to be listening. My concern is that marketers are already stretched so thin. The average marketer is balancing traditional outbound marketing (lead generation) campaigns, with inbound (content) marketing strategies. Observing our clients and how crazy busy they are, I don't see how Quora can get a lot of attention. I don't disagree that someone should follow the conversations. But, I don't see a marketing v.p. allocating much time to it. If he/she has staff someone can allocate some time to it I suppose.

      BTW, I wasn't suggesting that Quora should be considered for outbound (broadcast style) marketing. Not in the least.

      There is one inherent marketing attribute I failed to recognize. Google announced this week how they are indexing social content and Quora content is part of the mix. I certainly see value in that.

      Thanks for your comment. Good to hear from you!

  • Melinda

    I thought your last section "The Biggest Cost of Social Media is Time" said it all. So often, companies and marketers tend to jump on the next great marketing tool without thoroughly considering its real strategic value. While the ROI in social media is high, time is still money and marketers would be wise to carefully dedicate their resources to those social media outlets that will deliver the most bang for their buck.

    • FindandConvert

      Amen! And much of social media marketing requires a willingness to experiment which adds to the time factor. It's all about the ROI!

      Thanks for your commentary on this post.

  • Jeanna Favero

    Hm, I am comfortable with this nevertheless not thoroughly certain, so i'm going to research a tad bit more.

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