Can You Spot The Mistake Here?

September 30, 2011Comments Off on Can You Spot The Mistake Here?

Can you see the mistake TripAdvisor made below?


You want people to share their opinions on issues in your community. It stimulates activity and gets people invested in the success of your community. If I submit an opinion I check back often to see what others thought of my opinion (I'm shallow!).

The problem isn't wanting those opinions, it's how we ask for them. Too often we see sentences like:

"Tell us what you think"

"Share your opinions"

"How do you feel about ….?"

Think about what? My opinions on what? It's too broad and too vague. I'm not sure which opinion to give, I have so many. What if my opinion could be about the wrong thing? There's a social fear at work here. 

If you want more opinions simply be more specific. Try closed questions or structured open questions. Help people to give the right type of opinions. Ask a direct question.

Ask me what my favourite or worse experiences were. Ask me if I liked {x} better than {y}? Ask if I were {x}, would I do {y}?

Or even better, what was your best/worse/favourite. People like to give their opinions. 

In the example above, it would be better for Tripadvisor to ask:

What was is the best hotel you've ever stayed in? What was the worst? Was the holiday you took this year better than the one last year? Why? Tell us here…

Finally, asking people to share their opinions to receive their first badge is a terrible incentive. People have to care about the badge. They have to see other people who have the badge. They have to connect it to status. A badge is meaningless by itself.

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