So, quite a while ago, Instagram added a poll feature to Stories. Everyone went mad about it and there were polls about everything, everywhere. I reached my poll limit very quickly and made a small protest about using them. Because I didn’t want to be just someone else asking a question. Because I wanted to use any poll I created to actually influence a change, or relate to something relevant. And not a lot of people were doing that. But now the initial excitement about polls seems to have worn off, I’ve embraced them a little more. Here’s five ways to use polls on Instagram.
How to use polls on Instagram
First of all, let’s just remember that at the moment, polls can only be used on Instagram Stories. This isn’t a problem (in fact, I think having a pretty ugly looking poll on a main feed image would look wrong, but maybe I’m just a bit old fashioned?), but it’s something to be aware of. Like any other Instagram Story, a poll will exist for just 24 hours…
Here are five ways to use polls on Instagram…
- Market research – can’t decide whether to stock a product or not? Want to make sure there’s a demand for something you’re planning to sell/offer? A poll is a great way to do this.
- To show options. If you offer two colours in a product, or offer personalisation, or can wear something two ways, a poll can be fab. Create an image (if you don’t have fancy graphic design software, look at Canva) and then place your poll on the image (in the app). It’s a nice way to show what you have to offer.
- Engagement. Oh yes. Stories tend to get good a good number of view in relation to the size on an Instagram following (especially if you use hashtags and geotags… but that’s a different blog!), but do these people merely look at your content and swipe on, or do they actually care? Asking someone’s opinion can make them feel important and enhance a connection, which is important.
- Test an idea. Want to try something new on your blog or vlog? Then you can ask your following what they think or even what they’d like to see. Ok, you can only give them two options, but I recently did this and I found the results really interesting. For example, I asked whether people would like to see more brand information (which I see as people behind the brand, how it developed, etc) in contrast to product information. Of course, you can’t see the why with a poll (and it would require greater input by the person who’s been kind enough to get involved), but the information I gathered has given me food for thought and I will be using this feedback.
- Share an opinion. This might be on something tame (I did one about the weather!) or it could be something a lot more daring. If you have a strong opinion you want to share, and you want to see if you’re alone in your thinking/find people singing from the same hymn sheet, a poll can do the job. However, if you’re planning to share a strong opinion, as with doing this anywhere, be aware that you might have push back.
So, there are five easy ways to use polls on Instagram. However, I would still urge people not to overuse polls as, like anything, they can become a little boring. However, when used well, they can be a positive addition to an Instagram Story, for that day at least.
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