8 Creative Ways to Use Instagram Polls for Business

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Alexz Miller

Last Updated: Feb 17, 2023

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Looking for a quick way to capture audience attention? Try Instagram polls.

As part of the Instagram Stories feature (which 500+ million people use each day), polls are a fun way to put the social back into social media.

They’re more than just another way to make your community sit up and take notice. Instagram polls are all about actively engaging with your audience. If you’ve ever researched how to get to the top spot on Instagram before, then you’ll know that engagement is king.

Today, you’ve got two options with your Instagram polls:

  1. You can keep it simple with the classic poll (just two answers to choose from)
  2. You can use the emoji slider to gauge audience sentiment

Here, we’re going to show you a handful of creative ways to build Instagram polls for sensational social media campaigns.

First, Here’s How You Create Instagram Polls

Let’s start with the basics:

How do you add Instagram polls to your stories?

First, grab your images or videos as you normally would, and set up your Story. Then, click the sticker icon in the top right of the page.

To create a classic poll, hit the tab that says “Poll.” You’ll be able to create both the prompt for your question and the answers. For instance: “Do you love pizza?” and “Yes” or “No.”

To design an emoji slider poll, click on the tool that looks like a slider:

how to use emoji Instagram poll

Here you can get a little more creative and show off your playful side. You can add your poll or slider to any spot on your page and adjust it according to your preferences.

Once you’ve got your Story sharing, swipe down to get the stats, just as you would for any other Story.

Now that we’ve got that out of the way, let’s get to the good stuff – how to use your Instagram polls creatively.

1. Crowdsource Feedback and Ideas

You’ve launched an awesome product, but now it’s time to introduce something new to the market. The only trouble is, you’re not sure what your customers want next.

Sound familiar? Instagram polls could be the answer.

Create a poll to find out which of your latest concepts your audience likes the idea of the most, or what kind of product they’d like to see more of. For instance, with a classic poll, a fashion company could ask: “For Summer, would you rather see more skirts, or shorts?”

On the other hand, if the same fashion company was thinking of launching a new dress line, they could post some concept pictures along with a slider poll. This poll might ask: “How much do you love our latest collection?”

Everyone’s favorite Swedish furniture company, IKEA, used polls to ask people which kitchen collections they liked the most:

IKEA Instagram Poll

Polls like these are an excellent way to make sure that you’re investing your R&D budget into the right concepts for your customers.

2. Learn More About Your Community Using Instagram Polls

How much do you know about your Instagram tribe?

In everyday life, one of the easiest ways to get to know people is to ask them questions. So, why not follow the same strategy on Instagram?

Instagram polls give you an excellent way to learn more about your followers, and what they like, dislike, or want from your account.

You can give your audience the opportunity to vote on anything, from, whether they prefer videos or pictures in your feed, to whether they’d rather your bakery sold more cookies than cupcakes.

Instagram polls are simple to use and packed full of handy statistical information. Sure, they’re not going to tell you everything you need for a comprehensive user persona, but they’ll put you on the right track.

For instance, Mimi Hammer, the swimwear brand which is now known as Mimi & August, used their polls to figure out whether customers preferred high-waist swim-suits, hipster cuts, or low-rise Bikini pants.

Mimi Hammer Instagram poll

Hey presto – with one campaign, the company knew exactly where they should be focusing their efforts with their next line of bikini offerings.

3. Drive Traffic Back to Your Website

Getting lots of attention on Instagram is awesome.

But what if you could pull that engagement over to your website too?

In 2017, Instagram added the option to put links in your Instagram Stories, if you have at least 10K followers. That made it much easier for companies to get the attention they needed from Instagram back to their websites. Of course, you still need to get people to “swipe up” to visit your site – but Instagram polls can help with that.

If you can tempt your audience by convincing them that you have the answers to their questions elsewhere, you’ll have them swiping in no time.

For instance, the Zoe Report used Instagram polls to imply that they knew exactly how much their customers should have in their savings by the time they were 30. By swiping up, the audience could read the article, then vote on a poll asking whether the amount was more or less than they thought.

This Instagram campaign was effective not just because it made the most out of compelling content, but also because it gave customers part to be part of the “in-crowd.”

By swiping up, you got to find out whether you were on the right track or not, and you were able to say that you knew something your friends didn’t.

4. Keep Your Brand Top of Mind

It’s not enough to just grab customer attention these days. You also need to make sure that your audience keeps thinking about you when they’re no longer on your social media channels or site.

This means developing a strategy for brand awareness.

Instagram polls are an excellent way to introduce people to the personality and tone of your company. This drives deeper connections and relationships that make your community feel more connected.

Asking someone to help vote on the next product you release, or which item should be your best-seller makes them feel like they’re contributing to your growth.

You can also use Instagram polls to keep your brand top of mind by reminding people of what sets you apart.

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For instance, MailChimp uses their mascot, Freddie, to showcase a unique identity that their customers love. The company regularly releases polls that ask users to vote on their favorite versions of the mascot, such as “Yeti” Freddie, or “Rock and Roll” Freddie.

Photo of two monkey figurines. Text reads: "Who is your fav? Vote" Two buttons read: "Yeti Freddie" and "Rock and Roll Freddie"

It might not seem like much, but playful posts like this mean the world when building affinity with your audience.

Combined with Stories that keep your followers up-to-date on product updates and brand announcements, they’re excellent for strengthening the connections you have with your community.

5. Entertain Or Educate Your Followers

Finally, when people come to your Instagram page, they’re looking for valuable content. It’s the same as when they visit you on a blog or another social channel.

The more worthwhile content you share, the more people will keep coming back to interact with you.

It’s up to you whether your posts are educational, sophisticated, informative, or playful. The key to success is maintaining the same brand aesthetic throughout every customer touchpoint.

For instance, Vanity Fair used the quiz format with their Instagram polls to ask users questions about the upcoming royal wedding in 2018. The concept worked because it harnessed the playful, yet cutting-edge identity of the publication:

Vanity Fair Instagram poll

On the other hand, wellness and meditation app Headspace used a series of Instagram polls to teach people about mindful eating and reflection. This helped their customers to get more out of the application and discover how to live more healthily.

6. Gain Insights About Your Products or Services

Brands have long since used polls to pinpoint their consumers’ favorites. While many use polls to discern their audience’s opinion on different topics, Instagram polls are also an effective way to figure out what your followers love the most about your brand. As Instagram polls provide built-in engagement with their time sensitivity, they’re a quick way to gain insight on your brand’s products or services. Use polls on your Instagram to ask your active audience to pick which product or service they prefer. 

If you’re debating about which line of products to roll out first or trying to decide which features to include in a particular service, consider using Instagram polls. Simply provide your followers with two different choices and let them respond accordingly. This way, you’ll see which ones they like better and you’ll be able to use these insights to shape upcoming campaigns and offerings.

example of using Instagram polls for insights
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7. Improve Your Engagement 

Polls are also a great way to improve your engagement on Instagram. As Stories are only seen for a 24-hour period, they’re typically viewed by your most active followers. Take advantage of this captive audience by using polls to grow your engagement even more. 

Using polls to get your audience to participate can do wonders for your Instagram marketing strategy. Even something as simple as asking followers entertaining or silly questions is enough to grow your engagement with polls.

8. Promote Your Marketing Campaign

Your main Instagram feed isn’t the only place to promote your marketing efforts. Your stories are the perfect place to continue to promote your current campaigns. Use Instagram polls to get customers to interact with information from your campaign.

Asking your followers to participate in a poll directly engages them with your Instagram campaign. If the polls pique their interest enough, they’ll also serve to drive traffic to your website as your followers hope to learn more about your brand or current campaigns. 

how to use instagram polls to promote a marketing campaign

Are You Making the Most of Instagram Polls?

Used correctly, Instagram polls are an excellent way to engage and delight your followers. They can keep people coming back to your profile, improve the relationships you have with new and existing customers, and even earn you new fans.

However, like anything else in an Insta campaign – they need creativity and planning to work. Make sure that your Instagram polls aren’t just there to boost your metrics. They should also convey the unique personality of your brand and deliver something valuable to your customers.

Experiment with your polls and look for a way to create mutual value for you and your audience. The results will be better customer insights and affinity for you and more memorable experiences for your followers. That’s an outcome you don’t need to vote on.

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