Lucky Louie at the breakfast table.
Here's Louis CK, trying to explain to his daughter that she can't play outside at 5 AM. Poor Louis (or Louie) is thrust into an existential crisis through the kid's relentless questioning.
Have you ever been in this situation? You're bombarded with inane questions, stuck in a loop that will lead nowhere, but you just can't stop answering?
Why is that?
Questions act as a psychological irritant, causing the grey cells in your brain to spike up into a neurological hoedown. You almost feel like you owe an answer.
You can use this powerful trigger to engage your audience. Ask questions and they will instinctively interact with you.
The best way to ask questions on your website is through a quiz.
Let’s see how you can quiz your visitors to increase engagement in a fun way!
How to Turn a Bunch of Questions Into an Engaging Quiz
"I want to ask you a bunch of questions. And I want to have them answered immediately."
So a quiz is essentially just a bunch of questions, right?
While Arnold's technique is effective, it's not the best way to engage your website visitor. No, for marketing purposes, we need to be slightly more strategic with our questions.
You're not making a survey. You're not interrogating your visitor. You're most definitely not going to become that annoying kid by asking "why" repeatedly.
The point of a quiz is to ENGAGE your visitor by interaction. To do that, your quiz needs three key elements:
While quizzes can provide valuable information, it’s not a survey. The main purpose of any quiz is to entertain. It’s meant to break the boredom and monotomy of your Facebook scrolling.
That’s why you should aim to make your quiz if not lighthearted, at least quick to answer.
- Ask unexpected questions that have clear cut answers.
- Make it easy to reply using good software. Nobody wants to reply to a quiz that’s slow, unresponsive or otherwise painful to use.
- Make it challenging, humorous and fun. We're not creating an aptitude test, but something you would find at a pub quiz event.
Buzzfeed, the kings of fluff, are also masters of entertainment. They've created a ton of quizzes for the explicit purpose of timewasting.
Useless they may be, but just one of these completely useless quizzes gathered over 700k shares. That's not a figure to be scoffed at.
It shows how we yearn for entertainment and colour to break our daily routine.
Your quiz, as with any content you create, should be a clear extension of your website and brand.
If you're a serious person running a factual website, show that in your quiz. If you're more personal and humorous, let 'er rip.
- Your readers need to feel emotionally invested. Speak to your visitor directly, as if from one person to another.
- Don’t be afraid to polarize your audience. Your quiz can't and shouldn't interest everyone.
- Pick the right topic. As with any other content you create, your quiz should connect with your audience's dreams, fears, hopes or goals.
The interactive nature of a quiz gives it huge sharing potential.
- Title your quiz with a captivating headline. Make it funky and challenging. "Which Game of Thrones-character are you?" is much more interesting than "Do you know the Game of Thrones-character traits?"
- Stroke your reader's ego with a positive and rewarding result. Your reader should learn something new or get a good laugh from seeing their result. Give them a reason to show it off to their friends!
- Make sharing easy with sharing buttons. If your reader can't share their result with one click, you can be sure they won't do it.
This quiz on Women.com got 2.3 million shares. And it's about spelling.
If this were merely an article about spelling, would you have shared it? Perhaps, if you're into that sort of stuff. (Say, if you're a writer like me.)
However, since it's a quiz, there's an element of gratification involved. You can show all of your friends how well you spell. That makes it interesting to a much wider audience.
3 Ways a Quiz Will Help Your Content Marketing
You now know the basics of how to create a successful quiz. Next question is - how do you use it for marketing? Here are three basic ways you can use quizzes in content marketing.
1. Drive traffic from the social web.
When you’re browsing social media, an article or ad will have to be absolutely fascinating to earn your commitment. But if it's a quiz with a lighthearted premise, you'll be much more inclined to click.
Your quiz should function as a low-commitment way to draw traffic from social media into your sales and marketing funnels.
2. Generate new leads.
When you do manage to get a visitor to your website, you want them to sign up to your mailing list, so they’ll keep returning again and again.
This is where your opt-in offer comes in. Provide value in exchange for your visitor's email address. Usually this is in the form of something downloadable, like a PDF.
Why not use a quiz as your opt-in offer?
- Its interactive element makes it more engaging than any standalone download.
- It provides value by teaching and entertaining.
- You get a new lead AND specific data you can use for highly accurate segmentation.
3. Gather valuable information and segment your visitors.
We use quizzes to find out what our visitor knows. It's entertaining for them and useful for us.
While it’s not meant to be a survey, you can use quiz data to segment your participants into groups based on demographics, skill level, tastes, gender etc.
You can use this segmentation to improve the accuracy of your email marketing, provide more relevant content or even create webinars specifically designed to these people.
Five Pro Examples of Using a Quiz for Content Marketing
Now let's take a look at some expert examples of using quizzes for content marketing.
1. Social Triggers - What Type of Entrepreneur Are You?
Here's the headlining quiz on the Social Triggers-website.
What type of entrepreneur are you? It’s such an intriguing question. Did you know there's more than one type? I didn't.
You can't help clicking the button, if only for fun.
You navigate through a handful of thought provoking questions, all designed to get an upcoming entrepreneur's mind racing with ideas.
Before seeing your result, you obviously need to give up your email. At this point, why would you resist?
After navigating through a handful of questions about your business potential, you get a moniker for your entrepreneur-type.
Note the possibility to easily share your results.
However vague this type of test seems to be, the answer can be priceless for an entrepreneur looking for some sort of direction. For the website owner, the benefit is information. Derek Halpern finds out what stage of their business his visitors are in, and how he can best help them to succeed.
2. Jon Loomer - Test Your Facebook Ads Skill Level
Facebook ads is a massive topic that evolves and changes constantly, and Jon Loomer's site covers most of it. As a newcomer, this vast knowledgebase can be intimidating. Where do you begin?
Jon knows his audience consists of readers of all skill levels, so he gives us a chance to test our skill level before going any further.
It's not an easy quiz. These questions are tough, and you're not supposed to know these answers outright, unless you're a seasoned FB Ads-pro.
The results page summarizes your skill level in using Facebook Ads, but it doesn't stop there.
Jon uses this information to create content that more accurately corresponds to his users' wishes. In fact, after the quiz, you can sign up for a webinar suited for your skill level.
The only negative aspect of this quiz is the lack of follow-up in the end. I find no buttons for sharing or clear CTA to sign up to Jon's webinar. Easy mistakes to fix that would undoubtedly increase conversions.
3. Ramit Sethi - What's Your Earning Potential?
Ramit’s whole schtick is to show you how to be rich without the complicated jargon and bullshit that seems to plague the personal finance-industry. He wants to make it immediately accessible to every visitor, and that’s what this quiz is about.
This quiz promises a chance to earn money in as little as an hour. Wouldn’t you give it a try, just for the heck of it?
You’re faced with a handful of enlightening and thought provoking questions, bringing the whole being rich-idea closer to reality.
You'll notice these questions are very mundane and down to earth. You don't need an economics degree to follow what's going on.
After the quiz, there's the standard sign up to receive your results.
The results help you to increase your earnings immediately.
Of course, getting a dream job or starting a business isn't exactly something you can do overnight, but it's enough to raise an eyebrow and get you interested.
What follows is Ramit's admittedly feisty newsletters full of information on how to achieve whatever goal you choose and an inevitable invitation to take his Earn $1k-course.
This quiz is a great example of how to collect qualified leads for your online courses, while at the same time educating and challenging your visitors.
4. Autotrader - Check your cool quotient
Autotrader, an automobile trading website, is no stranger to content marketing.
They attract their car-enthusiast audience by publishing automotive news and articles, or in this case, a quiz about cooling systems.
This quiz is more designed to educate the car-going public about a common fault, the coolant leak. Do you know about coolant leaks and how vulnerable your car actually is to common every day faults?
It's an interesting premise, but the quiz is nothing to write home about.
You’ll immediately notice the lack of presentation. Just a few simple graphics and some attention to the user interface would massively improve the user experience.
Interesting and challenging questions, but what, do I have to use PAPER to answer these? What is this, a kid's toy?
Then we get to the results, which is not a separate page, but more of something you might've seen in a newspaper back in 1989. This is not an engaging way to present results.
There's no way to know your score, no call to action, and worst of all: no way to share your results.
Not surprisingly, there's also no comments.
As much as I enjoy car related topics, this quiz is a good example of how not to do content marketing with quizzes.
5. Ericsson - Recruiting a Dev
Ericsson, the communications behemoth, is no stranger to audience engagement. This quiz, as part of their ongoing recruiting process, serves as a preliminary exam before letting people apply for the job.
Imagine planning a career at Ericsson. This recruitment page looks rather cool, doesn't it? Of course you'll click the Start-button.
You soon learn that Ericsson wasn't playing around. This is bloody not easy!
It's well made with relevant images, and the challenge for a non-developer is unsurmountable. Description of ... what?
This quiz is ridiculously difficult for me, but it's also automatically filtering me out of the recruitment process. As a result, Ericsson gets more qualified applicants.
As any marketing professional should, Ericsson has added a complete sign-up form to collect leads before showing results.
You can also share your results.
This is the exact point of keeping your results positive. Even my measly 1/5 score is accompanied by a healthy dose of irony and a funny picture.
As a company, they must have been through their own ups and downs in recruitment. Using a quiz can be an entertaining way to showcase what the job entails. Even if you don’t want to apply, you can still see what kind of work a person in this particular position would need to do.
How Do You Make Your Own Quiz?
Now that you’ve seen quizzes in action, do you have any ideas for your own?
As it happens, we've created Thrive Quiz Builder, the most bad-ass quiz building plugin.