Quora and How to Become the ‘Next Big Thing’

5 01 2011

A brief glance at my twitter feed at any point of the day yesterday and someone, somewhere was signing up for Quora.

Anxious not to be left behind in the social stampede, I followed the herd.  What I found was a nicely designed if fairly unremarkable social utility that feels like the love-child of Twitter and Yahoo Answers, with a bit of Digg DNA thrown in for good measure.  I actually quite like it, but so far I’m waiting to be convinced that the information I can get from posting questions on Quora isn’t available from a combination of Google and a bit of social search on Twitter.

What did stand out was the sudden surge in interest.  It isn’t simply that I move in geeky social circles, a quick look at Google search numbers shows that searches for Quora have increased ten fold since Christmas.  I know that no two social sites are the same but it has taken me over three years to amass a meagre 99 Facebook friends. My band of brothers and sisters on Quora hit three digits in a few hours.  Something had to be going on.

A quick trawl suggests that third-party recommendation from a trusted source is as powerful as it ever was and perhaps more so amongst those eager to discover the ‘next big thing’ in the social sphere.  Step forward one Robert Scoble; American blogger at Scobleizer, technical evangelist, author, former technology evangelist and oracle to 156,775 followers on twitter.  On Boxing Day he blogged ‘Is Quora the biggest blogging innovation in 10 years?’ effectively endorsing the site as the next big thing.  PC Magazine, Techcrunch, TNW and FastCompany were amongst the many media outlets that piled in.  Even the UK’s conservative ‘Daily Telegraph’ opined that ‘Quora will be Bigger than Twitter’.   Searches for Quora bear out the hypothesis that it all kicked off on Boxing Day.

Time will tell as to whether the early adopters stick with Quora and if the current flood of  interest is enough for the site  to break through in to the social network stratosphere.

Bear in mind also that Quora only went public in June.   For now it’s all about the hype and proof if proof were needed that if you have something to launch, the right kind of endorsement is still an crucial part of the mix.

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7 responses

5 01 2011
Quora

How did Quora suddenly start getting many more users?…

On Boxing Day Robert Scoble blogged ‘Is Quora the biggest blogging innovation in 10 years?’ effectively endorsing the site as the next big thing.  PC Magazine, Techcrunch, TNW and FastCompany were amongst the many media outlets that quickly followed.  …

5 01 2011
Tweets that mention Quora and How to Become the ‘Next Big Thing’ « PR and the Social Web -- Topsy.com

[...] This post was mentioned on Twitter by PR & The Social Web. PR & The Social Web said: Quora and How to Become the ‘Next Big Thing’: A brief glance at my twitter feed at any point of the day yesterda… http://bit.ly/g6UZRu [...]

5 01 2011
Jim Dowling

Excellent stuff – I agree. It seems alright but not special. That said, I signed up to Twitter in about 2007 and did nothing with it for 18 months, emitting the typical, “why the fuck would anyone care about what I had for breakfast.” etc etc etc

5 01 2011
How Quora is becoming the Next Big Thing «

[...] Originally posted at PR and the Social Web http://prandtheweb.com/2011/01/0… [...]

12 02 2011
Quora for PR and Marketing Pros | Edelman Australia Blog

[...] Quora and How to Become the ‘Next Big Thing’, Rob Brown, prandtheweb.com, Jan. 5, 2011 [...]

9 03 2011
Quora for PR and Marketing Pros | Edelman Digital

[...] Quora and How to Become the ‘Next Big Thing’, Rob Brown, prandtheweb.com, Jan. 5, 2011 [...]

10 09 2012
Quora gains a tidal wave of users | 33 Digital

[...] Brown discusses how just one influencer could cause the increase: Quora and How to Become the ‘Next Big Thing’ var addthis_pub="33digital"; David Clare wrote this on January 7, 2011 It's filed in the News [...]

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