The concept of a Facebook conversation has been around for a while but Twitter chats have been traditionally more popular. I've worked on a few Facebook Q & A's that were a huge success and I'll explain how they work.
Based on conversation threads which are “available for Page owners and public figures with 10,000 followers or more, allow people to click a “reply” button, which sits alongside the “like” button, to respond directly to an individual comment and engage in a branched-off discussion.” CNET talked about this when it was first announced in March but more recently big names, such as Martha Stewart and Guy Kawasaki, have started using these for Facebook Q & A. (Full disclosure: I work with Guy Kawasaki and manage his social media presence.)
How it works: You promote that you are going to have a live Q & A on your Facebook page through all your available social channels. The format is similar to a Reddit Ask Me Anything (AMA). Here's a link to a Storify I created from an AMA that Guy did.
We promoted Guy's live Q & A on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Pinterest and in a relevant community on Google+. You could also add it to your weekly email or other public communications. We tweeted things like this:
Join me NOW for a LIVE Q & A for thirty minutes (starting at 4:30 pm PT/7:30 pm ET) >> http://t.co/ZFa5Vgfgv9
— Guy Kawasaki (@GuyKawasaki) October 31, 2013
At the time that the Q & A was going live, we posted a photo with text to the Facebook page to signal that the Q & A was starting. Then the questions started pouring in! Of course, on your Facebook page you may not have as many followers but this doesn't mean that you shouldn't start the conversation and use this tool to engage more personally with your Facebook community. (refresh your browser if the Facebook embedded post isn't live below)
This Facebook live Q & A received 264 likes, 41 shares, and 410 comments so I'd say that it was a huge success. We had the challenge of it being on Halloween night so I'm predicting next time we'll have more participation. If you want to make sure that you don't miss future live Q & A events with Guy, like his Facebook page if you haven't already.
I've started hosting a Facebook Q&A on my Page each week called Thanks a Latte Friday Q&A to say thank you to all the people who support my blog and social media. People love it! If you want to join in you can find them at 2 pm ET here.
• It reached a lot of people.
• Live questions and answers are fun!
• People loved engaging directly with Guy and Martha in their chats. And yes, Guy did respond to all the questions on Facebook himself. He is a very fast on the keyboard.
• The Q & A stays on your Facebook page so it has a longer life than a Twitter chat.
• You can pin the post to the top of your Facebook page for better visibility.
• You can embed the Facebook post in a WordPress blog to extent the lifespan of your event. (see what I did there)
• It's a more targeted Facebook interaction and conversation than a regular post.
• The user interface is a little clunky if you try from mobile. Desktop is best for this.
• It was hard to catch each question when they were coming in so fast.
What do you think? Are you going to give a Facebook live Q & A a try?
Improving conversations with Facebook on Replies
Photo credit: Big Stock Photos