ASKByText, which I found on SMS Text News, is hoping you will. Me, I’m not so sure. I’d much rather plug into something free with ad support. I see a clear opportunity to package advertising related to the original question and send it back to the mobile user with the answer.
Three weeks ago Michael covered a similar service offered by AskMeNow that we like; he reported that his questions were answered in 30 seconds or less. AskMeNow operates without a service fee. And when I say fee I’m excluding standard text messaging rates. Obviously those apply evenly but they’re sorta outside the scope of the actual services offered by these organizations.
Here’s how AskByText works.
- Text the word “Ask” and your question to 70589.
- You’ll get a reply asking you to opt in by Texting back a “Y”.
- Wait for you answer.
- Pay $.99 once the answer is delivered.
To test the service I sent in a question asking who the high bidders were in the 700mhz auction.
I’ll update the post when I get my answer. I received my answer in approximately 20 minutes which read “The high bidders on the US 700MHZ auction are believed to be Google, AT”.
So, the thing is… in this user to service and back context an ad supported model would probably have a difficult time getting that $.99 right? But if the service architecture was re-modeled to something mobile social you have much more upside and an opportunity to blow right on by $.99.
By introducing community experts to answer questions you have an opportunity to expand the advertising beyond the original mobile user by sending Ad Sponsored questions to the segments of the community that have expertise in a topic. Naturally, all of the usual social goodness could get poured into a design like this too… profiles, opting into areas of expertise and answer rankings immediately come to mind.
What do you think, does my model look like something that might actually hold water?