HQ Trivia: Captivating Consumers, Stimulating Marketers

Now that binge watching and time shifting are the new normal of media consumption, how do you explain the HQ Trivia app phenomenon? This is old-fashioned, set-your-alarm-and-stop-what-you’re-doing entertainment, and it’s gaining in popularity by the day — with well over 1 million players simultaneously competing in the live trivia game during key time slots.

But the quirky app is doing more than grabbing headlines and breaking records; it has brands considering all the possibilities trivia offers as a consumer engagement platform.

For the record, trivia is far from just the latest marketing fad. In fact, it’s been around long before “Jeopardy” or “NTN Trivia” in bars. Brands have been using trivia for a variety of marketing objectives for years, but the best programs are built around specific marketing goals, and provide experiential value to consumers.

So, which common business objectives can be achieved through consumer trivia challenges? Test your knowledge below!




This one should come as no surprise. Whether you’re launching a new product, making changes to an existing loyalty program, or simply trying to help consumers understand your brand’s value proposition, trivia can turn dry information into a fun and engaging experience.

EBay used trivia to solve the ongoing challenge of motivating its community to list and sell items, which is a more involved process than just buying. Through the Level Up Challenge, buyers learned how easy it is to make money by selling everyday items found around the house.

Content engagement

With content choice growing at an exponential pace, trivia provides a great solution to motivate and reward consumer engagement.

During the 2017 holiday season, Ellen DeGeneres leveraged trivia to drive viewer engagement with Ellen’s “Show Me More Show” Watch and Win Contest. Fans viewed designated episodes from the program on YouTube before answering questions for a chance to win. To drive ongoing viewer engagement, each episode provided a new chance to win a prize.

Enhance the experience

What makes HQ Trivia app so successful isn’t the chance to win a big cash payout. Lottery tickets with million-dollar jackpots make HQ Trivia’s $10,000 prize seem insignificant by comparison. It’s the competitive nature of the experience (you against others, and yourself) that really drives engagement.

Turn downtime into playtime

When a national beer company was launching its new loyalty program last year, it recognized that its value proposition shouldn’t be solely focused on rewarding product purchases. It was even more important to enhance the consumer experience with the product, especially on-premise, to attract a whole new generation of beer lovers. 

Building on the tradition of bar trivia challenges, this native loyalty app gives members a chance to earn incentives by playing at their neighborhood watering hole — and rewards them based on their performance. Localized questions about hometown sports teams and events add relevance to the experience and drives ongoing engagement.

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