A month after adding a new audience polling option to Instagram Stories, parent company Facebook is now also adding a new poll option, with all profiles and Pages now able to add GIFs and images in their Facebook polls to generate more interest.
Facebook users have had access to simple polls in Groups, on event pages and within Messenger for some time, but not with the capacity to add images - and more importantly, GIFs.
The new system has been in testing for some time, with first images of the option surfacing back in September.
New! Facebook is testing polls with GIFs for Pages pic.twitter.com/o2Ri82F8yU— Matt Navarra (@MattNavarra) September 19, 2017
Video via Matt Navarra
The enhanced poll option provides another way for individuals and brand Pages to generate more attention in the News Feed. Polls have proven particularly popular of late in Facebook Live streams, with publishers using Reactions as a voting mechanism - something Facebook advises against.
It’s possible that those Live polls have served as the inspiration for the increased poll focus, with these new, interactive options providing a simple, quick way for users to connect with their audience and generate engagement.
Creating the new polls is easy – now, when you go to compose a status update (on desktop or mobile), you’ll see a new poll option, with the ability to attach a relevant image or GIF in each field.
You can set a time limit of a day, a week, or just leave it running indefinitely. If you do set a time limit, that’ll be listed on the post and viewable by all users, adding an extra push for them to participate, while anyone can also see a listing of who’s voted in any poll by clicking on the participants list (though it doesn’t show how each user voted).
For brands, polls provides an interactive, engaging option which could help your company content stand out in the News Feed, while also building better connection with your audience in a simple way. Polls can also, of course, be used as a means of feedback in order to get input direct from your audience, which can help you hone in on their specific preferences.
And given Facebook's looking at more ways to boost personal engagement, which could further reduce organic reach for Pages, brands need all the help they can to boost in-feed visibility. Polls provide a new tool on this front, and are likely worth experimenting with in some form.
It’s quite easy to create your own GIFs, with various tools available to convert video into GIF form, or you can use the array of GIFs already available in your polls. Either way, the new poll options provide another interesting tool worthy of consideration for Pages.