This may be a Rhetorical Question: Quora?
Assuming that many of you read the same popular tech blogs as I do, I'm willing to bet that you have noticed all the hype about Quora. It's the latest question and answer platform to have caught the attention of the blogosphere and techie hipsters. I have to admit, I've been slow to "get it" and I really have spent more time lurking and browsing questions while reading others’ experiences and impressions. Already there has been a bit of a backlash from some of the early adopters but does that mean that Quora is already on the MySpace track? Should organizations just ignore it and focus effort on Facebook and Twitter with everyone else? Even though I don’t see myself being a hard-core Quora participant, it may still be worth some attention for the causes you support.
Quora is worth attention because it has the attention of passionate users. The people that are posting questions and answers are taking the time to research, compose, and revise their posts. The community is taking time to moderate the posts and vote up or down answers that have value. This type of participation and engagement is contagious and they will take it with them to other networks and actions.
By responding to questions on Quora, you have an opportunity to represent your organization and the expertise that you bring to discussions. Search for your issues or cause on Quora, and you'll likely already find a set of questions that people are asking. Check out a few like: cancer, homelessness, aging, and climate change and you’ll find tons of interesting questions and answers. Nonprofits should also be asking questions on Quora. It’s a great way to get high quality responses and feedback on approaches that you are taking. The integration with social networks also allows you to share your participation outside of Quora in your broader communities online.
Will Quora be the next Facebook or Twitter for online engagement? No. Could you gain the trust and respect of a few more supporters by giving it a little thought and participation? I think maybe so. What are some other of the best ways that nonprofits can use Quora? You can find out what others think about that very question posted over on Quora.
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