All kinds of good things happen when you increase on-site time. People subscribe, share, click on ads, buy things, the list goes on. It’s a constant challenge to get that average visit duration on the rise, and a quiz can help.
In this guide I’ll go over some basic principles for creating an entertainment quiz that is irresistible to your readers and increases engagement both on your site and on the social web. I’ll be tying in examples from BBC and Raechel Ray that have combined to reach over a million people.
1. An obvious quiz title
What I mean is, make it clear that your quiz is a quiz. We don’t have exact numbers to back it up, but we’ve seen quizzes be the most popular article on sites from Forbes to The Washington Post and everything in between. When you’re writing a quiz title, make sure people know they will actually get to engage with this content and not just read another article.
Here are some examples.
“What kind of clutterer are you?” From The Raechel Ray Show, this quiz promises to tell you something about yourself. In this case that something is also somewhat significant (it’s always nice to identify our own problems). The general template used here is the “Which (blank) are you?” template which promises to tell people something about themselves in return for a few minutes of their time.
“How much do you know about BBC Proms?” Again, the only real way to answer this question is by asking questions, in a quiz. The reader is promised an opportunity to see how they stack up against the knowledge of the site in a battle of wits. This title template the “How much do you know?” template, works really well for entertainment news. There are always big events happening, and you can make quizzes about them.
2. Questions that act on their own
Quiz questions should not just be a means to an end. Instead of forcing people to answer drab questions with answers like “somewhat, always, and maybe” your quiz questions should be fun to answer on their own.
Be speaking naturally (using your writing voice) and using a lot of imagery, you can make answering quiz questions a fun activity on its own. Since it takes about two minutes to answer every ten quiz questions on average, making this part of your quiz entertaining is a must.
3. Results that are built to be shared
We share things that are positive. At Interact, we ran a test of tweets that originated from quiz results and found that the majority were overwhelmingly positive in nature. In other words, don’t tell people they are not good or inferior in any way. After all, they are here to consume entertainment content and are not keen on being put down.
However, do add value in your results. Shaq came up with a rule for entertainment. He said 85% to make people smile, 10% to inform, and 5% to sell. You can still provide links to other content or products and give a real explanation, but focus on brightening someone’s day.
4. A strategy for the social web
There are some pretty hard-set rules for maximizing your twitter and Facebook shares, here they are.
Have images. Tweets with images get 18% more traffic, and Facebook posts have an even wider gap.
Share the title and a description. Your title is the hook, your personalized description is the reel to pull people in.
Get a discussion going. Quizzes with at least five comments have a much longer lifespan as people come back to weigh in on the discussion. That means you might have to respond to some of the comments yourself to get the ball rolling.
We’ve seen quizzes “go viral” within hours of being posted and continue to stay popular as top content on entertainment sites and blogs. By following just a few basic principles you can be well on your way to success in the world of quizzes and increase the amount of time people spend on your site.