If Google can make a business from showing ads to users asking questions, could a site that is dedicated to questions and answers go one better?

Quora is trying. The site, on which users ask and answer questions on a host of subjects, launched its advertising sales effort in 2016 for a handful of clients.

A year later, it opened up a self-service platform for anyone to buy ads there. Then, in 2018 and earlier this year, Quora added new targeting capabilities.

In this video interview with Beet.TV, Quora chief revenue officer Arnie Gullov-Singh says: “It’s still very early, but we’re very happy with the results so far.”

Quora ads

Why would Q&A be an effective advertising play for brands in a world of video and social engagement?

“Much of the knowledge that’s shared on Quora is actually about products and services and brands,” Gullov-Singh says. “The reason people are using Quora is because they are making some kind of considered purchase. It’s a great place to be because you can influence a consumer.”

The site’s ad executions include posting regular answers to questions, text ads, image ads and also promoted answers. Audience targeting is offered against questions, topics, geography and past interests. Clients include DuckDuckGo, Asana and Instapage.

All promoted answers must be disclosed as such. “Because we require everybody to use their real identity, it leads to higher quality answers,” Gullov-Singh says. “So it’s pretty clear that this answer is coming from a business, or who it’s coming from.

“We have over 300 million users a month now around the world, and they’re sharing 90 million stories every day in their feed.”

This video is part of a series of interviews conducted during Advertising Week New York, 2019. This series is co-production of Beet.TV and Advertising Week. The series is sponsored by Roundel, a Target company. Please see more videos from Advertising Week right here.