March 5, 2018 Content Chat Recap: Use Quora for Personal Branding to Stand Out from Your Competition

For the month of April, #ContentChat is taking a deep dive into branding. Our first chat on the topic was with Kory Ferbet (@KoryFerbet) on how to use Quora for personal and company branding. If you’ve been thinking about giving Quora a try and weren’t sure how to get started this recap gives you a solid overview.

Q1: What is Quora and why should content marketers and content creators have an account?

Quora is known for being a Q&A site, but it’s grown into being more than that.

A1: On its surface, Quora is a question and Answer platform. At its core it’s a community of enthusiasts that rewards people for sharing knowledge and remaining curious.

Content creators can use it for market research, topic ideas, keeping an eye on competition #ContentChat

A1: I love using Quora to see the kinds of questions people have around my clients’ focus, which helps me frame the content I create for them. #ContentChat

— Berrak Sarikaya | Content Strategist | Speaker (@BerrakBiz) March 5, 2018

A1: For me Quora is a great platform to learn, get insights and find exposure to stories. The one consistent piece of advice I hear about good writers is that they are good readers and Quora provides a great place to read good, informative about very specific topics. #ContentChat

What @koryferbert said. Also a way to share your own expertise. It’s been a daily habit/curiosity for awhile for me. #contentchat

The raw storytelling on #Quora can be emotional. I don’t use Quora strategically, but manage to gain some kinda insight into a topic/issue (homelessness, int’l travel, parenting, etc.) every time. #contentchat

Q2: OK, I’m sold on starting a Quora account. What should I do to get started?

Spend some time identifying both broad and more narrow topics of interest to tailor your experience.

A2: When setting up your account you’ll select interests and topic preferences to generate your feed.
When selecting topics, pick both selective and general terms. ie: recruiting, tech recruiting, engineering recruiting, internet recruiting, startup recruiting, etc. #ContentChat

A2) Select topics to follow. Ensure you add your own topics of expertise to your profile. Follow friends who are also on Quora. #contentchat

Agreed. When I initially signed up I only chose a few really broad categories, and didn’t find it to be as useful/interesting/engaging as it was when I went back recently and went into more detail in my topics. #ContentChat

A2: Make a note of any topics you want to chime in on. This will ensure you’re making the most of your time on the platform. #ContentChat

A2: fill out your profile as much as you can & more importantly, answer as many questions as possible that pertain to your skill sets. #contentchat

Q3: How do I find questions to answer on Quora?

Get to know the interface to set yourself up for success on Quora.

A3: In addition to the personalized feed you can search different topic ideas in the search bar. On the left side you have shortcuts to the different topics you selected earlier, as well as a New Questions and New Answers tab. #ContentChat

A3: Another good way to find questions to answer on Quora is to answer a question. If you do well you’ll get asked by others to answer related questions. Be selective when answering these requests, some people are just looking to get out of doing their own research. #ContentChat

A3: I usually search by keyword. From there I do some digging on questions that I feel okay to my strengths. #ContentChat

A3: Trying searching for topics you feel you can contribute to. Once you see what others are posting and you start looking around more, you’ll get a better feel for the platform. #ContentChat

Q4: Some of the replies on Quora are copy+pasted blog posts, while others are short and to the point. What’s the sweet spot for Quora reply lengths?

There isn’t a rule of thumb as to optimal answer length—don’t feel obligated to go long just for length’s sake.

A4: A lot of that will be circumstantial. Quora questions are diverse so there’s no one size fits all solution. The most successful answers tend to not only answer the question, but also provide additional value with data or proactively answer follow-up questions. #ContentChat

A4: Go as long or as short as you need to go in order to answer the question comprehensively, or to expand upon something a prior poster mentioned. #ContentChat

A4: I hate using length targets for answers… as with other content, the answer should be as long as the topic dictates. If you’re looking for the best visitor spots that doesn’t require much detail, but if it is a technical question a longer answer is warranted. #ContentChat

Yes, but generally the Quora community addresses those longer than necessary posts by itself by upvoting the “best” answers (i.e. those that address the topic with relevant information in the most efficient manner). #ContentChat

Q5: I posted a great reply but no one has upvoted it. What am I doing wrong?

Take another look at your post and think about how you can present your information in a more skimmable way, or go deeper.

A5: Make sure your answer is either providing additional information or a different point of view to previous answers. Breaking things into lists, adding links or images, and showing personality will draw upvotes. #ContentChat

Gret point on including images. That is a great way to capture readers as they scroll past and to differentiate your answer. #ContentChat

I can’t emphasize the importance of adding links to relevant content to support your answer and the impact that will have on the quality of the responses you will receive as well as the requests you’ll get to answer related questions. #ContentChat

A5: Beauty is in the eye of the consumer… you may have responded to a question that no one cares about or your answer may not be as “great” as you think it is. If you’re repeating content others have contributed you’re not likely to get much attention on Quora. #ContentChat

Q6: How does Quora come into play in the hiring or consultant vetting process?

A6: Quora gives people who may not traditionally think of themselves as content creators a voice. Questions and Answers give insights into how someone problem solves and shows their depth of knowledge/understanding. It’s a great platform to show how you’re different #ContentChat

Q7: What are some ways to tailor your Quora use to help build your personal brand and stand out from your competition?

View Quora as a community you participate in and not just a publishing platform to start building your brand on the site.

A7: Quora rewards quantity as much as quality. Following and being active across a plethora of topics is important. Don’t be afraid to give back. Upvote other answers and be sure to engage with comments and replies to your answers. #ContentChat

A7: First and foremost, you want to be yourself when responding with answers. That’s going to resonate with people.

This is a great point. Rather than going in and doing a blitz of answering, then not coming back for a few months, it’s smarter to build Quora into your weekly social media routine. #ContentChat

Q8: What are some common Quora pitfalls, and how can I avoid them?

A8: People answer too quickly. Make sure you are actually answering the question given. Quora is a Q&A platform, it’s not a blogging platform. There’s a fine line between not enough information and too much information #ContentChat

A8: If your answer is going to be a paraphrase of someone else’s earlier, already upvoted answer, don’t do it! Instead, find an element you can dive deeper into, giving that original answer a nod. #ContentChat

A8b: People don’t ask questions. Answering is only half of the platform. Asking questions that drive conversations gets as much attention as answers given. #ContentChat

A8c: People are too self-promotional or self-serving. Quora is a great place to share your knowledge and gain valuable insights into the market, but linking to your company in every answer is going to get you flagged. #ContentChat

You almost have to try and strike a balance between the impulse to be FIRST and the goal of being the most upvoted response to the question. J-schoolers might have trouble with that. 🙂 #ContentChat

Q9: Let’s expand our Quora networks—share your Quora profile link and connect with each other.

— Berrak Sarikaya | Content Strategist | Speaker (@BerrakBiz) March 5, 2018