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Facebook Questions July 30, 2010

Filed under: Ideas — Carla Bobka @ 1:37 pm
Tags: ,

Mashable reported Facebook has opened Facebook Questions. It allows Facebook users to get answers to their questions from the entire Facebook community. It’s different than posting a question in on your Wall or in a status update. Those are only seen by friends. Questions let’s any Facebook user give you an answer.

Couple of caveats – it’s for people not businesses. At least right now. So you can’t ask a question from your Business Page. Also, like most Facebook releases, it’s a roll out, so you might not see it on your screen right now. But keep your eyes open.

If you choose to use Questions keep these things in mind:

  1. Privacy is not an option
  2. Trust is the only credential
  3. Your profile picture may be seen  by the public
  4. It is not an advertising platform

Privacy – by design Questions is a public forum. Don’t get too intimate here.

Trust the source – Buyer beware; Facebook is not going to test the answers for accuracy. Personal experience and relationship are your guiding lights. Do you know this person? Do you have reason to believe they have the knowledge to give the “right” answer, or are they just throwing stuff out there.

Exposure – Manage it. If you have reason to keep your photo away from certain folks, stay away this feature all together. Questions and responses to them will likely show up on Community Pages, which are open for everyone to read. Like status updates in your newsfeed, your profile pic is next to your comment/update.

Pitching Questions – Facebook Ads is Facebooks advertising platform. Business Pages are Facebook’s way for your business to interact with people on Facebook. Questions is not a forum for selling on Facebook. Business Pages cannot answer questions or post questions. It is a platform for people to ask other people questions.

That’s it for the cautions. Now the upside as a business owner. Community Pages will likely become much more valuable. I suspect they will populate from Questions just as they do now, from status updates. For a business, that means you can see what people have questions about by surfing Community Pages related to your services and industry. When people have questions that’s where you find opportunity for new product, improvements and weaknesses in your competitors.

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