Let’s face it, Yahoo Answers has cornered the market on crowdsource based responses to community inquiries. However, there is a distinct possibility that changed today, as Facebook announced the beta rollout of its newest product, Facebook Questions. Facebook Questions works similarly to Yahoo Answers, but with more functionality, including multi-faceted search queries, real time updates to newest questions asked, and the ability to subscribe to a question and subsequently its answers.
I believe this is a game changer for Facebook. Whereas there has always been ethical issues surrounding Facebook’s policy to publish wall posts if not deemed “private”, Facebook Questions is positioned in such a way that it knocks the walled garden of privacy down without being invasive. This in turn leads to indexable content on search engines.
With 500 million potential question and answer producers, marketers should find intrinsic value in the possibility of contextual brand, category and competitive statements surrounding their products and companies. It will be interesting to see how Facebook rolls out integrated marketing with Brands regarding the Questions product because the possibilities could be endless. For edification purposes, I’ve embedded a few screenshots that I took this evening.