Every year, predictions come out for what will be hot or what to watch in the upcoming year. This year, in the PR and Digital Marketing world, a strange, foreign word, that I don’t even know how to pronounce correctly, is on everyone’s, that word is Quora. Quora, as I found out, is a question and answer site created by former Facebook employees and friends of MArk Zuckerberg. A beta version launched about a year ago and the site officially debuted in June of 2010. For a more accurate explanation of what Quora is, I asked Quora, itself, “What is Quora?” Their answer, answered by Quora Co-Founder, Adam, is:
“Quora is a continually improving collection of questions and answers created, edited, and organized by everyone who uses it. The most important thing is to have each question page become the best possible resource for someone who wants to know about the question.”
In Quora, when a question is answered, this answer is voted on by users as a good or bad answer. The answers with the most positive votes appears at the top. The voting is just one way that this site is socially interactive. Another feature, that may plague them down the road, is that users can edit other people’s questions.
For those who predicted Quora to be a great presence in the digital marketing and PR world for 2011, you don’t have me totally convinced. I do believe it will gain popularity in 2011 since it seems like a great product, but I don’t think it will be ready to join the same league as Facebook and Twitter. I think in order to compete, it needs to niche itself out from Google, Ask.com, Yahoo!Answers, etc… It also needs to become more accessible; why login to a site when you can type in a question into Google and get instant answer? Maybe a mobile application would help this situation. And finally, I think it will take some years to gain popularity amongst the masses like Facebook and Twitter, which you need in order for it to be a successful tool. Bottom line, I see the potential everyone else sees and wouldn’t dismiss Quora, but I don’t think 2011 is its year.