Demonstrating expertise in your field using Q&A sites is a budget-friendly marketing strategy that can drive traffic to your website. Such sites allow the general public to tap the knowledge of the community to get answers to their questions. You gain from the exposure you or brand receives and you typically get a link from your profile back to your site. You can sometimes also reference articles you’ve written as a source, if that’s appropriate.
To make it easier to stay on top of this strategy I recommend you use an RSS reader to subscribe to the most relevant categories for you on your chosen sites and scan them every day or few days to see where you can jump in and contribute.
Here’s just a few of the available sites you can participate in.
Answers.Business.com – lots of good business-related subcategories here. You can create a profile page with links and can include links as sources in your answers. Plus editor Erika is really good about tweeting out questions and good answers so you can gain additional exposure that way.
Yahoo Answers – a recent redesign has helped out this long-running q&a site. Because of the huge span of topics and large audience, there is a lot of junk to get through, but you can drill down to find the legitimate questions to answer in your field.
LinkedIn.com – Their Answers section is a great place to help out and develop your reputation. Since LinkedIn is an established and business-oriented social network, it’s a good opportunity to get your name in front of real people in your field and network with them easily.
Focus.com – Their Questions section is a good place to network with serious business owners and execs and there’s significantly less ‘noise’ than on sites like Yahoo Answers.
Biznik.com Forums – Biznik caters to entrepreneurs and small business owners. In addition to any advice you can contribute, you will likely learn something as well.
Answerbag.com – similar to Yahoo in that it’s a very mainstream site, meaning you have to dig a little to get to the good stuff. But the bonus here is that they provide ‘dofollow’ links which means it’s good for your SEO.