When it comes to social media marketing, one of the most valuable tools you have at your fingertips is the instant feedback from your followers. Customers and potential customers alike are available to give you the responses you may need to grow, change, and improve your business.  This is where polling can come in handy in your online marketing strategy.

You can use polls for anything from product feedback to content generation to increased engagement. Companies spend a lot of time and resources trying to get feedback on their products and services. Social media is a great way to get users to provide some honest and complete feedback. It’s also a free way to receive these responses. You can use polls to provide a place for customers to give you some valuable reactions to your products or services so that you can identify issues and improve on strengths.

Obviously you have to be willing to listen to outside criticism for this approach to work. If you’re sensitive to this, then you’re not going to be able to gain a deeper understanding of how your product is (or isn’t) working for your customers.  The idea is to use the feedback you receive to improve, not to become defensive.

Businesses that have a social media presence also want to stay relevant and interesting to their followers so that they keep following and interacting with them. Polling can be a great tool to find out what your customers find interesting and what it is that they want to hear from you on your page.  Their interests can give you ideas on themes for campaigns, specials or deals they may be looking for, or information that they may need that you can provide.

In general, polls are a great way to get people talking. They spark conversation, which equals engagement on your page. The more people who are engaging with your posts, the more people will see your posts, which translates into even more people following and interacting with your brand.  Polls invite customers to join in the conversation and show them that you value their opinions.

Once you have the opinions of your customers, what you do with those opinions is completely up to you.  Polls can be a great tool for content generation.  You should consider that the poll itself is content for your social media channels and then the information that that poll collects can translate into a lot of new content as well. You get some great ideas for: new articles, social media posts, campaign themes, website content, product improvement and more.

The overall conversation going on your page can also equal increased traffic to your page, blog, or website.  Followers may share your poll which introduces your social media channels to a whole new audience.  Links to your website also encourage followers to investigate your brand a little more to see what you’re all about.  Social polling is definitely a great way for marketers to drive extra traffic.  The more interaction you have on a post –the more visibility your page will have.

Have you tried social polling as a part of your marketing strategy yet? What have your results been?  Have you noticed an increase in engagement or product feedback? What do you think the most valuable takeaway from polling is to a brand? Comment below!