Instagram may not be the first one to introduce polling, but it joined Facebook, Twitter and Snapchat on the bandwagon to ensure that users could make the most of the platform in terms of engagement. Here’s how you can use Instagram polls for your own page.
Social media is no longer about touting your products and dangling them in front of customers’ faces. It is about keeping them engaged through diverse content that keeps people entertained and engaged.
Recently, a lot of pages these days are putting up totally unrelated polls (not related to their product or service in any way) just to keep their audiences entertained. They range from opinions about popular movies, shows, singers, actors and performers, to polls about popular culture, food, travel and more. Whatever is trending at the current time is being used to let people know what the majority thinks. Cricket season? Who do you think is going to win? Insert the names of two teams and see what people think. By putting up such polls you’re also engaging those followers who might not be very interested in your product-related posts.
Or, you can even be brand-focused without being too product-focused. What this means is that you do not directly talk about your products, but somehow link your polls back to your brand. For example, you run a clothing store. Instead of talking about your own clothes, you ask people what their favorite looks from the Oscars Red Carpet were. Later on you can capitalize on the earlier polls and show your consumers how they can recreate some of those looks with your clothing line.
Trying something new? Not sure how it might turn out? Ask your audience. If your content on social media is specifically made to cater to your followers, then there is nothing better than directly asking them about their preferences. Say you are a home-based business trying to launch a new candle scent for winter and you have two options in mind: Fresh Snow and Pumpkin Spice. If you have not decided yourself, you can ask your customers to decide instead. Make a poll and put it up, and see which scent wins.
Social media users love offering their opinions through polls, even if they do not engage much with your posts otherwise. This will always work in your favor because you will not need to spend resources conducting research on consumer preferences, or invest time visiting their profiles to get hints of what they may or may not like. You can just design and put up a poll, and get your answer within 24 hours.
Apart from offering opinions, Instagram polls will also make your followers actively think about your page or brand, because they will be spending some time to share their thoughts with you.
Asking leads to listening. If you are asking customers to share feedback, then you should also make sure you make them feel heard. Customer responses will provide you with ideas to design your upcoming products or help you provide better service. They might even help you design better marketing materials and campaign, based on what kind of feedback you’re receiving.
The idea is to stop operating in isolation. Creating healthy, meaningful conversations through polls on social media will help you connect better with your target audience. It will also provide you with great insights on how many people actually engaged with your content, and how many did not. Testing out different styles of polls will help you determine what works for you, so you can employ better content and marketing strategies in the future.
Bisma Yusufzai is Deputy Manager, Digital Channels, NBP Fund Management Limited.