Wednesday, November 29, 2006

Google Answer Me Link Cheer

Via Threadwatch today I found out Google Answers was in the process of closing its help desk.

On their blog, Google mumbles something about “reconsidering our goals” and never really comes out and says why they’re closing but I’m betting it has to do with a drop in answer revenue. As I understand it, Google takes 25% of the fee collected so fewer questions means less money coming in. I think this one had more to do with economics than innovation. Anyway…..

Before they shut down for good, pop over to Google Answers and look around. GA is one of my favorite places to search for current lists of companies, associations, government agencies, non profits etc., and it's a great place to brainstorm for ancillary niches.

For example, let’s say you were in the education industry and wanted to find a new, related market to mine for links. There’s several ways to do this on GA, you can search by keyword (be sure to set the search perimeters to answered questions) or you can look through the categories.

I searched on the generic terms “education” + “list” and after wading through a couple pages struck gold! ----

It’s a list of sites on mentoring! I hadn’t thought about the mentoring niche initially and was happy to find a list of sites and URL’s to contact for links.

Here’s another one:

Do you sell in or around the airplane industry? Check this out:

And one more…

Need a list of headhunters in Washington DC?

You’ll notice some researchers have stars by their names – they’re reputation points (nothing in Google is immune to reputation it seems!). Once you find the categories you’re interested in, look for these 5-star researchers, they tend to provide better answers.

So... serve up some eggnog, get comfortable and cruise through Google Answers before they wrap up their toy and whisk it away. It’s a great little resource that could provide you with lists of holiday link cheer!

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