Today at 1pm PST Facebook’s long anticipated feature Facebook Questions went live to a small number of their users. This feature allows Facebook users to ask questions and get answers from anyone in the Facebook community, which is now 500 million strong.
When announced by Facebook in this blog post, they specifically highlighted the following features:
- All questions are made public to the entire community, not just your friends
- Questions can be tagged with keyword(s) to associate them with specific topics
- Anyone can browse questions by topic
So the big question that most marketers have on their minds is how can you use Facebook Questions? Well, as noted above, this is only open to a small number of users right now. If you are selected by Facebook, you will see a notification that you can now us the service. Facebook has stated that they will expand the service to more and more users until they roll it out community wide.
Facebook isn’t first to launch such a service, in fact, there are many other websites already playing in the Q&A space right now including Answers.com, LinkedIn Answers, ChaCha, Aardvark, Quora, Yahoo Answers, and Replyz. Facebook, however, has quite the advantage since it has the largest community of people who can be involved than any of the mentioned services. Another advantage they have is the fact that the community is already used to asking questions amongst their friends in the social space.
Currently, Yahoo Answers is probably the biggest success story in the Q&A space. They are generally ranked well when stats of Q&A services surface from time to time.
Twitter, although not a Q&A service is also seeing a huge amount of questions coming through their service. This is one reason why sites like Replyz tap into Twitter users and provide a way for marketers to leverage those opportunities to promote their brands, products, and services.
I am super excited to see what becomes of this since it could potentially mean that I and other online marketers can leverage this feature on Facebook to continue to grow their brands and steal market share from larger players in the search marketing space. More to come as this new feature fully develops and is rolled out to the entire community.