What Twitter's Poll Feature Means for Brands
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What Twitter’s Poll Feature Means for Brands

What Twitter’s Poll Feature Means for Brands

Polls on Twitter

 

When brands are looking for follower opinions on Twitter, the typical strategy is Tweet using “ReTweet for X and Favourite for Y”. This messaging is now obsolete as Twitter launched a polling feature in late October.

 

This brings new opportunity for brands to engage with their audience, and for users, a more efficient way to make their voice heard.

 

Any user may create a poll with two response options. The poll is live for 24 hours directly inside of your Tweet. Afterwards, the results are displayed with the number of tallied, anonymous votes.

 

As with any new social feature, marketers have to question how the change will impact their social initiatives, then adapt in order to elevate their presence in a changing social landscape.

How to Benefit from the New Polling Option
Triangles has comprised a list of suggestions for marketers to maximize the new feature and come out on top of the polls. We look at the opportunities and drawbacks of the feature in it’s current state.
1. Character Count
Opportunity: More Room for Content

A slight change from 140 to 156 characters makes for an 11% increase. Moreover, you save room without having to explain it is a poll and asking for ReTweets or Favourites as votes. This leaves more room for your question and space for a small sentence in each response option.

Drawback: Limited Response Selection

The polling feature only allows for two possible answers, meaning a simple Yes/No question. More likely however, you will find a biased selection of two answers. This means you may have a hard time connecting with every member of your audience.

2. Timing

Opportunity: Intriguing New Content

While a new social feature like Twitter polls are in the novelty phase, be one of the first to jump on this trend and intrigue your audience with a new style of content. Being first on a trend allows your creative ideas to shape how others will use the feature. Your brand becomes more relevant and can set the standard if done well.


Drawback: Short Timeline

24 hours in Twitter time may be an eternity, but it’s not much time to reach your full follower base. By the time some see it, the poll may be closed and become irrelevant. This does not encourage any further engagement from users.


Drawback: Lack of Integration

So far, polls have not been integrated into third-party apps, meaning scheduling, analysis, embedding and other app features will not co-operate with polls. We expect these technical limitations will be resolved in the near future.


3. Audience Input
Opportunity: Give Customers Greater Content Influence

Ask direct questions about what users want to see from you. Pay attention to their comments in order to optimize for their interests. Surveys and market research, especial for CPG brands, can be expensive and Twitter has created a way to earn consumer data for little to no cost.

Opportunity: Propose Ideas

Propose content, a product or event to see whether your audience is interested before spending time and money on execution. Plus, you may find new ideas from your audience in the reply section.

4. Engagement

Opportunity: Honesty

With an anonymous one-click engagement, your followers will find it easy to give feedback with their vote. No longer will an opinion be broadcast into a follower’s newsfeed or seen on their profile as a Favourite, meaning they are more likely to respond with honesty.


Drawback: Lose Traditional Engagement

With one simple anonymous click, your audience may choose to vote instead of engaging in traditional ways, such as ReTweeting, Replying or Favoriting. However, votes are a new method of engagement, for which we do not downplay their significance.


Drawback: Lose Potential Reach

Keeping an opinion private may be an upside for carefree users, but for brands, it may diminish a post’s potential reach. ReTweets and Favourites are still vital to expanding your audience.


5. Data
Opportunity: Fast Results

Conduct audience research and get results in 24 hours. See the polls shift in real time with each vote. Inquire about user behaviour, interests or satisfaction.

Drawback:  No Targeting

Due to anonymity, brands cannot target users based on their votes. While it may entice more people to participate, marketers can’t specify their audience or follow up with interests and concerns. Would allowing brands to view their voter demographics take away from the ethics of unbiased voting?

Experiment with your audience, see how their behavior changes with polls. The feature is still very new and a lot is unknown about their influence, but as with all social trends, it’s better to be ahead of the game.