Quizzes have exploded in popularity recently, they are obscure and goofy, while also providing real advice from time to time. We love them, and I’ve watched quizzes get hundreds of thousand of views in mere days. The real “magic” of a quiz comes from its ability to connect with your audience on a personal level. Where most content (articles, videos, etc) is one-to-many (you talking to a crowd), quizzes are one-to-one (you talking to one person).
This conversation occurs within the questions of your quiz, when you are crafting questions and letting people respond as they choose. The goal here is to build a connection with each person who takes your quiz. Think of it like a small business owner who chats with each customer who comes in to hopefully turn passers-by into long-term paying customers.
Your quiz can achieve that same effect, but only if the questions do the work for you. After observing more than 2000 quizzes get made using Interact, some themes have stuck out when it comes to writing excellent quiz questions. Here they are.
Use your personality. Think of your quiz as a conversation between you and every single person who takes the quiz. You get an opportunity to create a connection with a website visitor through your quiz that’s unlike any other form of content. Let your personality shine, be fun, be goofy, be serious, whatever is natural. Your quiz takers will know if you’re trying to hard to make the quiz feel personal, so go with what’s natural and be yourself.
One of the top performing quiz makers using Interact is a food blog called Food52. They make a new quiz every single week, and they average about 20,000 viewers per quiz. Every single quiz produced by Food52 is inherently human, meaning that you feel like your holding a conversation with someone while you take the quiz.
The quiz questions are personal, but the pre-populated answers are also personal. This means you don’t feel uncomfortable answering a question that might be off-putting from a stranger. Food52 understands that people enjoy talking about themselves and provides a platform for that to happen.
Follow the pub rule. The Irish Post is a London Newspaper that has become legendary at Interact for creating a quiz that reached a full 25% of the Irish people living in London. They have a rule at the Irish Post, and the rule is that no piece of content can be published until it passes the “pub test” meaning that if you were to read the content in a pub you wouldn’t be booed out.
For quizzes, the same rule applies, quiz questions should be conversational, like questions you’d ask of a friend in a pub, not scripted questions and responses like you saw in school quizzes.
The main thing to keep in mind here is to be a bit brash. At a pub you have a drink and the questions can roll off your tongue. Don’t be too reserved in your quiz questions or they will come off as boring.
Don’t ask too many questions. While you need enough questions to make sure your quiz is accurate, keep in mind that most people don’t have a very long attention span (two minutes is pretty average for online). That means anywhere between 6 and 12 questions is ideal. Any more than that and you’ll lose people who get distracted by cat pictures.
Keep every question on-theme. Great quizzes have a theme. Whether it’s a superhero quiz or a shark quiz, every single piece of the quiz content revolves around the theme and promotes it. Each question you write should be on the theme and help drive home the theme. For social media quizzes (where traffic comes from Facebook and Twitter), the goal is to get social shares out of your quiz results, and making every question build up to the results by being on theme will help with that.
In general, if in doubt – gear towards fun. Quizzes are mostly to entertain and only partially to sell your product. Make your quiz questions fun and engaging and watch the traffic flow in.