Thursday, April 19, 2012

Ask Me A Question?

“He who asks a question is a fool for five minutes; he who does not ask a question remains a fool forever” – Chinese Proverb

Interesting proverb. I don’t agree with the first part of it. You are not foolish by asking; in fact, you are intelligent enough to admit that perhaps you don’t know something, and you want to learn about it by asking. Nothing wrong with that.

The second part IS true. You’ll never know unless you ask, right?

Are you asking questions to your audience? Whether it be on Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn (in a group) or on Google+, questions are always a great way to get the party started.

Don’t be discouraged if no answers your question; if you have a photo or link attached, some folks will tend to look at the photo and not at what you’ve written. Happens to me all the time.

A suggestion: Put the text for the question in a photo and post it. Your audience will definitely see what you are asking of them. 

If you don’t have a lot of fans or followers, don’t be disappointed if no one responds. Only a fraction of those asked will even see your question.

You’ve got a dialog going. Ask more questions to keep the conversation moving. A vague comment may need clarification; ask for some. Or perhaps you want to hear some details on what’s being said.

W. Edwards Deming cautioned us: 
“If you do not know how to ask the right question, you discover nothing.” 

Make sure your question is open and fair; slanting it to get the answers you want isn’t going to bring you any valuable solutions! It IS tricky to word a question correctly; if you know anyone who is seasoned in market research (a-hem!) run the question by them.

Avoid asking a simple yes/no question; they don’t yield much! Multiple choice or open-ended will give you more valuable insight that you can actually do something with.
Think of the results as being something actionable; what WILL you do with that information?

Oh! I just asked a question. Fine. How ‘bout another one:

Are you going to ask more questions now?

This is Q in a series for the Blogging A to Z Challenge. Here's O and P. Like, Follow, or Circle me via FacebookTwitter, or Google+.

If it's a question of balance, the Moody Blues have the answer in the tune below:

No comments: