How To Use Facebook Polls To Engage Your Fans

By on August 22, 2011

The Facebook polls function was introduced by Facebook as a way to further engage your audience. It can be used to gather valuable market research and insight into your fans behavior. In the long run, this information could lead to more sales and a larger, happier Facebook community. But first – you have to figure out how to engage your fans using this feature.

healthcare poll

Courtesy of commonsensegovernmentviews.com

Interesting Questions

The first step to engaging your audience with polls, is finding a topic that they’d be interested in voting on. Asking the right questions can be difficult. First of all, the questions you might want to ask – may bore the pants off your fans. The trick is to find that common ground, and then transform what could be a boring question, into a dynamic one. Here’s an example:

Boring: Which chocolate flavor is your favorite?
Dynamic: It’s a chocolate disaster! Find your favorite flavor of chocolate below – and if you dare, tell us why in the comment section! Go!

The second question is conversational, and draws you in – especially when many people have already commented and voted. Questions can contain incentives, motivations and a competitive edge to keep people reaching out and clicking on their choice. Involve your fans in the voting process, and remember to keep your comments section buzzing.

Thought Provoking Answers

When you create a poll on Facebook, you have the option of selecting several answers for your fans. The answers are just as important as the questions. You really need to consider these before you add them. Always put the top 3 answers at the top, because the rest will be hidden from non-voters. To attract votes, add a little humor to your answers, or request that fans add their own answers – if they can’t find one that suits them.

Being Authentic

Part of fostering a community on Facebook is letting them get involved in the inner workings of your business. This means that if you involve them in a poll, they’re more likely to answer if you appreciate them for it. Tell them why you’re running the poll, and ask them to invite their friends to answer. A great way to get people excited about your latest polls is to turn it into a competition.

Crowd source your question from your fan base, and then ask your fans to provide the most relevant answers. Reward the six best answer writers with something special. When you do this now and then, you’re effectively engaging your fans, involving them in the process, and training them to watch out for your polls. The result is a lot more votes, comments, invites and valuable data.

Avoid selfish questions, and remember to always make your questions fan-centric. If there is hot news of the day, integrate it with your poll question to stimulate more votes. It’s also a good idea to make the answers educational, so that others will want to read them as well. Otherwise why would they care! Entertainment value on social networks like Facebook should never be underestimated, or ignored!

How do you use the Facebook polls function to engage your fans? Tell us below!

About John Souza

John Souza is founder and chief strategist of SMMU and Social Media Impact, and is a bestselling business author. He won the 2011 Tech Marketing Awards ‘Social Media Marketer of the Year’ and most recently the About.com Reader’s Choice Award for Best Online Education Site. John has appeared on The Michael Gerber Show, and his business has been honored at the Mashable Awards, Forbes Business Awards and The Stevie Awards.
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