Hands up if you’ve heard of Quora!
I’m guessing, and it’s a wild guess for sure! You haven’t moved a muscle.
That’s ok. Quora isn’t talked about much in the content marketing community but it’s one of those little heard of and underrated websites that could genuinely make a huge difference to your marketing and SEO efforts.
What is Quora?
If you were at school in the 90s, then you probably remember messing around the classroom computer on the website “Ask Jeeves”, trying to think of the most outrageous questions to ask. Somehow, there was always an answer!
(I didn’t actually know that Ask Jeeves was still around today until I just did a quick Google search for it!)
“Quora is a place to gain and share knowledge. It’s a platform to ask questions and connect with people who contribute unique insights and quality answers.”
Essentially, it’s a website where anyone can create an account, ask a question and receive answers from people knowledgeable about that subject.
The great thing about Quora is that people literally ask questions about anything, so you can be sure that your target audience are on there no matter what you do or sell.
Why do people use Quora?
To get the information they need to solve their problem.
Essentially, the same reason they’ll be coming to your blog, website and other online content.
When you need the answer to something, chances are that you’ll hop over to Google and tap it into their search box (and a lot of answers do come from Quora).
Quora users know that they can skip Google, go straight to Quora and see if their question has already been asked and answered, and if they need to, ask again and request experts to respond (just this morning I’ve had a request to answer “How do you perform a content marketing audit?”) then they do that.
I think what makes it stand out for me is that you can see the credentials of the people answering the questions. If you’re asking a question about content writing and I reply, you can see that I’ve been a content writer here at Words by Zoe since 2015 and that it’s my 4+ years of expertise informing my answer.
So let’s discover how Quora can help you as a business owner today.
Quora is a great source of content marketing ideas
I’m often asked where I find the inspiration to come up with blog post ideas and other forms of content.
My response is always “by observing and listening to the target audience you’re marketing to”, and Quora is a great way of doing that. It’s simple, just type in a keyword related to your industry and see the questions that people have asked.
Let’s take “content writing” as an example.
After typing it into the search box, the following questions appear:
- How can I write SEO-based content?
- What is content strategy?
- What are some of the best tools to use in freelance content writing?
- What is the relationship between SEO and content marketing?
There are four blog post ideas ready to go that can easily be re-purposed into how to guides, videos, tips and tricks articles, etc.
Not bad for a few minutes work!
Improve your authority by answering questions
When you want to be established as an expert in your field, answering questions about topics you’re knowledgeable about is a simple way to go about this (and you can even share your answers on Twitter or Facebook when you submit them!)
The best bit about providing answers to questions like these is that you can drop links to your blogs and web content, encouraging your target audience who want to find out more to visit your website and maybe even hire you or buy your products.
Links aside, being able to provide a detailed and well thought out response to a question will instantly add bonus points to your reputation as an expert (most answers are just a very basic sentence or two), and you can gain a deeper understanding of what your target audience want to hear from you as you write more and more answers.
If you’re wondering how this helps your target audience that don’t use Quora learn about you and your expertise, don’t worry! Quora answers often appear in Google search results.
Quora is fantastic for boosting your SEO
One of my favourite reasons for using Quora is the SEO boost it gives you (honestly, my two favourite websites for content-led SEO are Pinterest and Quora).
Writing answers enables you to drop links to your own content that hopefully people will follow and interact with the other content you have available to them on your website. It can be a great way to direct people to your lead magnet/mailing list too.
Aside from that, the links themselves are important.
Links provide your website with authority and there are three types – internal, inbound and outbound. When you create content, you should be aiming to include an internal link to another relevant piece of content and one or two outbound links to reputable sources that back up what you’re saying.
You do need to keep a balance between outbound links and inbound links though, if you have tons of outbound and not many links coming in, it can be seen as trying to piggyback on the authority of other websites, something Google isn’t a fan of.
While you can use social media to create inbound links, it’s how often they’re clicked on and the content read that really matters for increasing your authority.
Social media links can disappear quite quickly which is why evergreen websites like Pinterest and Quora, where the content can be found years into the future, are great for creating high-value and long-lasting inbound links.
You can discover influencers and industry leaders through Quora
When you want to collaborate with other leaders in your industry or use influencer marketing to further your products and services, Quora can be a fantastic way to identify the people you need to be talking to.
Take a look at the “Most viewed writers” after a keyword search and delve into their answers. If they sound like a good fit for you and what you do, respond to their answers with upvotes (basically a like and moving their answer up the page above people’s responses) and comments – you can say thanks, ask further questions about points they’ve made, maybe offer an alternate point of view, etc.
You can list your website(s), etc on Quora so it’s easy to find the details you need to contact them and ask if they’re interested in being interviewed for an article, featured on your website or if they’d like to collaborate on a project.
Quora is great for scoping out the competition
You can search for your own brand and your competitors on Quora. This is a useful way to see what people are saying about you, services you provide or products you offer and can give you a real insight into how your competitors are handling things.
This is also useful for reputation management, particularly if you sell unique products that your audience may be asking questions about. If you can directly respond to their questions in a non-salesy and informative way, you can nudge them further down the sales funnel or provide customer support where needed.
Keeping a close eye on the competition can help you keep on top of emerging trends, their marketing tactics and even how they go about delivering what they do, such as talking about their content writing process.
Are you ready to get started with Quora?
I tend to log in once a day and check for questions people have asked (make sure you select topics you’re able to answer about in your profile to get notifications) and aim to write one or two answers each day, making sure I link it back to my own content.
I then check the notifications for any comments I might need to respond to, have a quick look around at what people are generally asking and thinking about, and maybe pose a question of my own.
And that’s it!
Yes, it’s maybe 30 – 40 minutes a day but the boost to my website traffic, authority and generating new leads for my business makes it more than worth it.
For example, 4th July I wrote an answer to “How can I write SEO based content?” and was able to naturally drop a link to one of my most popular blogs – “Time to get alternative. How image based SEO can improve your website’s search ranking”. On the 8th July the answer was featured in Quora’s daily digest and seen by 71,000 people and on the 9th I’d had a visit to my website and an enquiry through my contact form asking if I can help with SEO and Pinterest.
This is how content-led and value-based content marketing and SEO can work for your business.
Did you know that I offer Quora marketing services for businesses? If you think Quora will work well for you but don’t have the time to commit to it, get in touch with me right now to outsource the hard work and reap the results.