By Jeremy Ellens, an EO member in Arizona and co-founder of Yazamo, a SaaS marketing company that specializes in generating leads and sales for small- to mid-sized businesses with its product, LeadQuizzes.
If you have a business that relies on generating profitable leads, quizzes are an internet marketing godsend. And it just might be that a trivia quiz is a perfect fit.
Why Trivia Quizzes?
The question below is from a quiz written by the guys behind game-show Quite Interesting. I’ll bet you’re drawn in, intrigued by the questions, and eager to know whether or not you’re right.
What typically happens to the grass when a landslide passes over it?
- It is scorched by the intense friction and frequently catches fire.
- It completely disappears: the weight of the rubble reduces it to juice.
- It is pushed into the ground, meaning next year’s crop is especially fine.
- Nothing–landslides actually hover a few inches off the ground.
There are lots of reasons why quizzes work. Everything from bolstering egos to built-in shareability. Trivia quizzes are no different. They’re inherently fun and they make us eager to prove ourselves: Am I really that clever?
The answer, by the way, is d.
In this article, we’ll explore how you can make a trivia quiz that easily drives leads and that will make participants eager to share. Let’s dive in.
1. A Great Topic
Making a great trivia quiz is about finding a balance between your audience’s interests and a topic that is well-suited to a quiz.
There’s a two-point acid test to check whether a subject is suitable. First, it should be naturally engaging, with lots of interesting pieces of trivia. Second, it should lend itself to crafting intriguing questions. You can then ask, will this topic gel with my intended audience?
If you run a food or recipe-related business, for example, you might opt for a quiz like Are You Sophisticated Enough To Get 10/12 On This International Food Quiz? A cosmetics company might go for something like What’s Your Makeup IQ?
Keep the following pointers in mind when coming up with ideas for your quiz:
- Look for other examples. Past successes, especially from the likes of Buzzfeed, can be a great guide. The more popular your topic the better. Tools like Google Trends are good for comparing brainstormed topics.
- The more popular your topic the better. Tools like Google Trends are good for comparing brainstormed topics.
- Novel is good. In practical terms, that means taking a generic quiz format and spicing it up. In other words, “Answer These Questions and We’ll Guess Your Age” becomes, “Build A Salad and We’ll Guess Your Age and Dream Job.”
2. A Catchy Title
Your goal is to lure readers. Once you’ve got them, you can deepen engagement to the point where they’re happy to hand over their all-important details.
Generally speaking, good quiz titles have the following three qualities:
- Clear: What is the quiz about? Be crystal clear about the topic of your quiz. Don’t ever try to trick your readers into clicking by promising something that they won’t get. The Hardest “Game of Thrones” Character Quiz You’ll Ever Take is a great title because it’s completely clear but also lures the reader in with a challenge.
- Short: You’ve only got a few seconds, so don’t overdo it. Keep your title brief and to-the-point. Use personal words like “you” and “your” if possible. Buzzfeed’s quiz How Good Is Your General Knowledge? is a good example. It’s simple and personal.
- Emotive: You’ll get more clicks if participants are acting on feeling. Whether it’s a “negative hook” that inspires fear, “Are You Making These Hygiene Mistakes?” Or a positive message, “The Life-Affirming Trivia Quiz That Will Restore Your Hope,” make sure to pack some emotion in there.
The implicit benefit of trivia quizzes is the enjoyment they provide. By keeping your titles clear, short and emotive you will effectively communicate this.
3. Engaging, Interesting Questions
Interesting, engaging questions are the key to high completion and sign-up rates.
Once you’ve decided on a killer topic and click-worthy title, you need to develop your quiz-taker’s journey by crafting questions that are fun to answer but are also on-topic and tie in with your brand’s personality.
Follow this checklist when you’re writing your questions:
- Not too many. Neil Patel suggests between 6 and 15 questions. Too few and participants won’t be engaged enough to share their contact details. Too many and they’ll get bored!
- On-topic. Keep the questions tightly focused around the topic of the quiz. This ties in with giving the participant what you promised on the packaging.
- Interesting. Avoid generic questions. The more unusual/wacky/remarkable you can make your trivia quiz, the more engagement you’re likely to have. The trivia quiz Can you name the quote source, Varys or Littlefinger? is an example of a quiz that avoids generic Game of Thrones questions but is still easy to take.
- Humorous. Humor is good for building engagement but also a useful tool for communicating your brand’s personality.
- Unexpected. Remember, trivia quizzes are supposed to be fun! Use the element of surprise to delight your participants.
You might not be able to apply all of these points to every question. The key is to keep them broadly in mind. They should apply to your questions as a whole.
4. The Right Wrong Answers
Part of the fun of quizzes comes from tricky answers. The type that could be right. One of the hardest bits about making a trivia quiz is writing answers that aren’t obvious.
- Obviously wrong answers are OK (kind of). Do you remember the quiz show Who Wants to Be A Millionaire? If you look at the answers to many of the questions, you’ll notice that it’s really a toss-up between two and that the others are almost certainly wrong. A good approach is to make sure that at least two possible answers could be correct. Having some obviously wrong answers is OK.
- Avoid “tricky” questions. Questions and answers that are difficult to remember should be avoided. Dates are a good example. Most people will know that Kennedy was assassinated in the 1960s, but not whether it was ‘63 or ‘64.
- Mix it up. Don’t put every correct answer in the same spot, such as second in a list of four answers for every question, for example. The good thing about challenging questions is that they increase the participant’s desire to know if they’re right. This improves the likelihood that they will hand over their email address to see their results when it’s over.
5. Let Your Personality Shine Through
Your trivia quiz is an excellent opportunity to tell your brand’s “story.” This will build engagement and make sure that people aren’t dropping off halfway through. It will also maintain a sense of connectedness between your questions.
Now, you might be thinking, “How do I tell a story through a quiz!?”
A “story” doesn’t necessarily have to be a narration. It can be a consistent theme, a progression of similar questions or a unique personality that shines through from the questions.
Let’s take Buzzfeed’s quiz You Can Only Eat Pasta If You Get 12/15 In This Quiz as an example. Its tagline, “This quiz is hard to pass-ta,” and the questions and answers are simple, humorous and playful. At the other end of the spectrum is Tony Robbin’s What is your leadership style? Though not a trivia quiz, the professional, straightforward tone comes through immediately.
The key is continuity. Ideally, you want to present an enticing image of your brand, starting a relationship with your participants. Hone in on your language, your question choice, and even your graphics when thinking about this point.
6. Build in Shareability
From our variety of case studies, we’ve seen that Facebook advertising is one of the surest, most inexpensive ways of generating leads with a quiz. When you can combine a highly-shareable quiz with a great ad campaign, you notch up that lead count even further.
In 2012, Jonah Berger published a now-famous study, in which he identified the key “share triggers” that make content go viral. He condensed his findings down into a handful of key points called “STEPPS.”
Here’s a rundown of the six triggers with examples of how you might use them in a quiz.
- Social currency. This term refers to features of content that encourage people to share because doing so makes them look good. The obvious area where this applies is results. With trivia quizzes, make sure your results indicate how intelligent your participants are.
- Triggers. A trigger is something that is easy to remember. Your title or the odd wacky question will work in this regard.
- Emotion. How does your quiz make people feel? Fun and enjoyment should be at the forefront; spiking these feelings will encourage sharing.
- Public. Design your quiz so that it’s easy to make public. Are share buttons included at the end? Does it look good on a social media feed? Are the results nicely formatted with cool graphics?
- Practical value. The practical value is the benefit your content provides. In this case: entertainment. Keep thinking “fun.” The more fun the more shares.
- Story. Your story is your identity. This will shine through in the way you write your title, questions and results. It’s the broader personality communicated by the different parts of your quiz. Are you being humorous? Clever? Helpful? What message are you trying to express?
Trivia quizzes might be perfect for your audience. Remember that the best quizzes combine audience interest with a topic that people like to test their knowledge on. If you find the right fit, the results (in terms of leads and engagement) can be significant. The combination of fun and expertise that having a trivia quiz to your name communicates can also be excellent for your brand. Who doesn’t like the entertaining expert?
This article was originally published in June 2017 on LeadQuizzes blog. It has been reprinted here with the author’s permission.