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The Power of Social Answers

We live in a hyper connected world and yet it is very difficult to get answers to your most urgent questions when you really need them. The short story to follow is a living proof of the power of social connections.

About 16 months ago, I started a consulting company here in Amsterdam. After a few weeks of operation I had an important client meeting outside of Dusseldorf. I prepped all night, put together slides with a value proposition and was up and running at 5AM the morning of the meeting to catch a train to Germany.

In my haste, I realized I forgot my Mac VGA adapter. I desperately searched Google to see where I can find an adapter near the Dusseldorf Hbf (train station) with less then promising results. The problem I came across is that Google did give me answers – all 108,000 of them, but the answers did not match my urgency level – a.k.a “I need it ASAP and I don’t have time to search within the search results”.

Google Search Results

At that time, Color Eight was not yet formed but we had a tiny prototype that posted questions to Twitter & Facebook, so in desperation I used Q! to do just that. To my surprise, I had two answers within the next 22 minutes. One answer came in on min 22 from someone I don’t know but who follows me on Twitter suggesting a media place on the other side of town – no good! But the first answer came from Facebook on minute 7, from an ex-collegue who lives outside of Dusseldorf: “Make a left out of the train station and 900 meters down you will see a small shop – they should have one”

Indeed they did and the meeting was a success!

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Happy Q!’ing