Listening is a highly underrated art form.

So is asking a good question.

Marketing depends on good communication, and some of our clients and class members struggle with writing.

It’s difficult to sit down, address a blank page, and say something brilliant every week.

Why not let other people do the writing?

If you ask the right question in a place where enough smart people are listening, you’ll get responses.  This is true on a blog, in social media, or even at a networking party. The most brilliant conversationalist is often the person who says the least, but who asks interesting, intriguing questions that everyone WANTS to answer.  The answers often contribute more to a reader’s understanding of the subject than just one person’s opinion.

Whether you use a question on a social media site as research material for your blog article  (quote people with permission, of course) or whether you simply ask a question you want to know the answer to, you’re bound to engage with interesting people who are educated on the topic.

Does it lead directly to sales?  Maybe not.

Does it create connections with people in your field? Absolutely!

Does it create interesting content on your social media profiles? Certainly!

Here are some examples from LinkedIn and Facebook.

content marketing

Conversations are always more interesting than monologues, don’t you think?

How do you start a conversation when you can’t think of anything to say?

Some ideas for questions sure to get good answers (many borrowed from networking advice!)

  • Ask a question that you genuinely want to know the answer to.
  • Ask questions that show your appreciation or understanding of a subject.
  • Stick with topics that are of interest to your “target market” or “target audience.”
  • Ask questions that don’t require an answer that is too personal or imply judgment such as  – “How much did you pay for . . .” or “How long did it take you to . . .”
  • Ask “open ended” questions that require more than a “yes” or “no”

So, what’s your favorite “cocktail party” question?  Can you think of a way to use it in your blog or social media?

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