What is a Q&A?
A Q&A (question and answer) session is an activity in which the first party will answer the questions of the second party, In this case, the first party would be the company/business, whilst the second party would be the consumer base. Q&As provide the perfect opportunity for the company to receive much-needed feedback.
- Cost efficient: Producing an online Q&A is a simple as posting a question, depending on the platform the company chooses to use the cost can change.
- Quick Results: It’s quick and easy to collect results online. Meaning that result can be collected and reviewed in as little as 24 hours, with no need to rely on external third party businesses.
- User Anonymity: Respondents feel more at ease when they aren’t forced to disclose their opinion under their real identities. which can help to produce more accurate results and feedback.
- Scalability: An online survey can allow you to reach a far wider audience in relation to the relative cost of producing it.
- Dishonesty: Respondents may not be 100 percent truthful with their answers. This can happen for a variety of reasons, including social desirability bias and attempting to protect privacy.
- Lack of personalization: Material that is un-personalized can often turn away some recipients as they feel the Q&A is not inclusive enough.
- Accessibility issues: If the platform that the material is posted on is not accessible to as many of the customers as possible, then it becomes difficult to collect a wide range of feedback and responses.
Through google analytics, it is possible to measure the traffic that your website receives. Showing not only the number of visitors but also the social media sights that these visitors are coming from, this information can then be used to establish the best platform on which to host your Q&A
(Jon Hayden 2018)
Google analytics also features google tag manager, a tool that would be extremely useful in conjunction with Q&A hosted on social media platforms where hashtags are relevant such as Twitter. Knowing whether or not a hashtag associated with you Q&A is popular or not will give some idea of the traffic that you would be likely to receive and encourages further development.
Having your Q&A retweeted will encourage participation from your audience. In reference to encouraging participation in an online community Hrastinski, S stated that “the larger the volume of messages posted and the closer members feel to each other, the more successful the online community becomes” (2011). This same idea can also be applied to your Q&A, As more people retweet like minded other will feel inclined to give their own opinion, which will increase the amount of feedback that has been generated.
Probably the simplest form of measurement tool available, however, it still should not be overlooked. When a post is made on a social media platform they will usually allow the consumer to leave a like or dislike on the post.
On Twitter, the number of retweets and likes are shown clearly underneath the post. It is important to keep track of this number as they are representative of the audience’s reaction to the content that you are releasing. In some cases, It may be representative of the wider audience as some consumers may not have the time to leave a comment and will instead leave a like or dislike in order to share their viewpoint.
Tips for increasing participation in a Twitter Q&A
Wide Hat Media recommend;
- Pick a winning hashtag: The right hashtag would be key to drawing in those potential customers who might not be aware of the Q&A, using concise and informative hashtags gives a clear representation of what the post is trying to convey.
- Promote yourself shamelessly: Ensure that you tell your audience about your Q&A. any promotion material should include information about the time, date as well as what will be covered. Try to include hashtags where possible.
- Consistent event times: If the event is recurring try to establish a set date and time at which the event will be held, for example, the Q&A may be held weekly at 8pm on Twitter.
- Tweet at an optimal time Chooses a time at which the majority of your consumer base will be able to participate in the Q&A.
For more tips on running a Q&A on Twitter (http://www.whitehatmedia.com/blog/how-run-awesome-twitter-qa)
The more reactions the business receives the more useful feedback they’ll have available to make the changes that consumers require. Therefore it is important to continuously track the shift in traffic and make changes to ensure that your Q&A sessions remain relevant to your audience
Hrastinski, S., Sjöström, S., Eriksson Lundström, J., Larsson, A.O., Ozan, H., Institutionen för informatik och media, Humanistisk-samhällsvetenskapliga vetenskapsområdet, Uppsala universitet & Samhällsvetenskapliga fakulteten 2011, “Encouraging participation in an intra-organizational online idea community: A case study of a Swedish municipality”, First Monday, vol. 16, no. 10.
Left Right Labs. (2018). How to run a successful Facebook Q&A session. [online] Available at: https://leftrightlabs.com/how-to-run-a-successful-facebook-qa-session/ [Accessed 26 Feb. 2018].
Merlo, O. (2018). Why Customer Participation Matters.
Whitehatmedia.com. (2018). How to Run an Awesome Twitter Q&A. [online] Available at: http://www.whitehatmedia.com/blog/how-run-awesome-twitter-qa [Accessed 26 Feb. 2018].
YouTube. (2018). Shari Harley, MA, CSP -Why is Feedback Important?-. [online] Available at: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kob1men59HM [Accessed 26 Feb. 2018].