This is a guest post by friend and fellow blogger, Director Tom. More on him below his post.
Have you ever noticed how certain questions naturally grab you?
Why is it that some questions jump off the screen and get your attention while other questions just fall off your radar?
To see what I mean, head on over to LinkedIn’s “Answers” section. Which questions grab you?
If you spend a few minutes poking around the different areas, you’ll notice a continuous stream of questions being generated.
- Why are so many people asking questions?
- What’s the benefit?
- Is there a trick to asking the right question?
- Why is the “Answers” section on LinkedIn so popular?
Perhaps it’s because the right question can:
- Bring fresh insights into old problems.
- Move you to get inside your customer’s mind.
- Drive traffic to your blog.
- Raise awareness about issues you are passionate about.
- Grow your professional network.
At this point, you might be asking, “Is there a way to use LinkedIn’s “Answers” feature to my advantage?”
You bet! Let’s take a look at five “real life” examples for ways you can enhance your on-line visibility while growing your professional network simply by tapping into the power of asking questions.
1. Generate fresh insights.
Ever wish you had an answer to a question but didn’t know where to turn? Well, you’re not alone!
As a filmmaker producing corporate films, no one has ever successfully answered a question I’ve been seeking in over 20 years. So, I asked the folks on LinkedIn for their thoughts…
Bingo! I wasn’t stuck anymore and had a goldmine of information I can use in future presentations. Are you stuck, too? Don’t be shy! Just ask away.
2. Think like your customer.
Sometimes you want new approaches and need a fresh perspective to your projects.
For instance, recruiting and retention is becoming a number one issue for many companies. Curious to what others would like to see in a recruiting film, I threw out this question:
Asking questions to jump into the heads of prospective customers is a valuable tool to get out of your own head and into your customer’s. Remember; be specific when asking your question. It will help give your question the focus it needs so readers can give you specific answers.
3. Drive traffic to your blog.
Asking an open-ended question like this can do two things for you:
- It can generate lots of answers because people have so many goals in common.
- It can increase the number of people reading your blog.
4. Raise awareness about issues you are passionate about.
If you are passionate about an issue, why not let more people know about it?
For instance, I remember reading an article that inspired me to ask, “Is corporate video art?” I couldn’t imagine the incredible variety of answers that poured in!
These answers got me thinking, why corporate videos are rarely ever part of the branding conversation. Why Not?
What are you passionate about? Why not start a conversation?
5. Grow your professional network.
Want a great way to meet interesting new people while increasing the quality of your professional connections? Ask a question that gets your readers wearing a different hat, like this one did: Yikes! I Have to Produce a Video…Now What?
Try asking a question that puts your potential prospect in a situation that you often encounter at work. Not only will you appreciate someone else’s point of view but chances are you’ll connect with some interesting new people.
Asking the right question to produce the answers you want takes a little practice.
Now that the secret is out, what are you waiting for? All you have to do is ask!
Director Tom is an excellent blogger and film maker. I met him in person at the SOB (that is, Successful and Outstanding Bloggers) conference, and was so impressed with his online personal branding strategy that I awarded him a You Get It award (yes, that coveted award). Tom has a very active Answers strategy and I really wanted to pick his brain, because I know it’s working for him. Hopefully his suggestions and insight help you develop your own Answers strategy!