The world runs on opinions. Good ones, bad ones, objectively wrong ones, and everything in between.
(I know. Technically, opinions aren’t supposed to be “wrong,” but you and I both know that some opinions are justbad.)
We’ve come to especially rely on the thoughts and opinions of those close to us. Whether that be reviews regarding a neighborhood salon or a forum for stay-at-home dads regarding nap time strategies, we depend on our communities for guidance.
Facebook polls or surveys are another platform for crowdsourced insights, revealing the viewpoints of many. If you’re interested in using your network to gather actionable data, this crowdsourced data is a great Facebook marketing tactic.
How to create a poll on Facebook
Open up "Groups" from your home page
Click "Write Post" and make it a poll
Enter your question and answer choices
Determine the poll's settings
Create the poll and wait for answers
Most importantly, understand that Facebook polls can only be created on pages or within groups. Pages are profiles for businesses or organizations. If you're interested in getting on the Facebook page game, read our article on how to create a Facebook business page that works.
Facebook for Business is just one of many social media networks that you could utilize within a social media suite.
Groups can exist for any number of reasons. Back in the Myspace days, a friend and I created a page simply to celebrate our love of cheese. That's neither here, nor there.
Polling is not a feature that works for personal profiles. For example, your grandpa can’t use his personal Facebook to ask friends and family how they feel about him growing a handlebar mustache.
Now that we’ve cleared this up, let's begin.
How to Create a Poll on Facebook
Creating a poll is easy, and can help you leverage a crowd's opinion on a pressing issue. Or maybe it could help you decide on what ice cream flavor to have at your son's upcoming birthday!
Here's how you go about getting these burning questions answered.
Find Groups in Facebook
You’ll want to navigate over to your groups. You can find groups under the explore tab on the static menu to the left of your Facebook newsfeed. The groups tab is located underneath events and above pages. Click on groups.
Once you’re here, you can see all the groups you are a part of.
Click on the group you want to ask the question to. Although this might seem obvious, make sure you choose the right group. You would feel quite silly asking your knitting group questions about your next neighborhood dog party.
Find the "Write Post" Box
Once you’ve clicked on the correct group, navigate to the write post box at the top of the page underneath the group banner. Find the ellipsis at the far right. In the case of this example, the ellipsis is to the right of photo/video, get together, and watch party options. Click on the ellipsis.
Clicking on the ellipsis provides a whole host of extra posting options. You can check-in to a location, ask friends for recommendations, associate a feeling to your post, or even tag an event.
Find "Poll" Tab
For the purpose of this how-to, we’ll be focusing on the tab that says Poll. This tab is underneath photo/video, but above tag friends.
Create Poll Questionnaire
Once you’ve clicked on poll, you’ll be able to begin creating the questionnaire. Start by asking whatever question you’re seeking a response to. Examples of questions you could ask in a group poll are:
“Which is the worst: libraries, salad, or Tammy Two?”
“What should Jim and Pam name their next baby?”
“How do you solve a problem like Maria?”
In reality, you can ask anything. (Stay within reason. If you are caught asking offensive or rude questions or saying things that go against the group’s rules, it’s possible administrators will remove you.)
Also, yes, this group I am using as an example is called Let’s French. It was a group for my study abroad trip to Lyon, France, and we liked to make the most of a good kissing pun.
Give Answer Choices
Once you’ve asked the question, you get to add options for the answers. Think of this like a multiple choice question. The options you add are your A, B, C, and D. This feature is especially useful if you’re stuck between a couple of different choices.
Say your puppy needs training and you are stuck between a few facilities. This would be a great time to go into your community’s Facebook group and ask friends and neighbors to vote on which they liked best.
Before posting, you’ll want to set the poll options. You have two choices:
Allow anyone to add options, and
Allow people to choose multiple options
These choices are not mutually exclusive; you can keep them both on at once.
Allowing anyone to add options means that your community members can do more than provide their opinions. They can provide more choices, as well!
For example, say your neighbor loves a dog training facility you’ve never even heard of. Keeping this option on allows them to add it to the list, which puts it on your radar and lets other members of the group vote for or against it.
Allowing anyone to add options can quickly become overwhelming, especially within a larger group. My advice is that you only keep this feature turned on if you don’t have a concrete idea of what you’re looking for. Otherwise, you may have tens of people adding their two cents, which can become more confusing than it is helpful.
Allowing people to choose multiple options is good for, say, a group trip. If your family is trying to vote on where to have its next all-relative reunion, it might be a good choice to keep this on. By allowing people to choose multiple options, you’re giving them fewer limitations and allowing them to be heard.
Schedule the Post
Now that you’ve decided on all of the other details, it’s time you decide when to post the poll. Lucky for you, Facebook gives you the option to schedule the poll in advance.
You might be itching to get a response to a question, but it’s 3 a.m., and you know everyone in the group is probably asleep. You can schedule the poll to post at a later time when people are more likely awake and looking at their Facebook feeds.
Once you’ve determined the question, answers, settings, and time, you’re ready to click post! All that’s left to do is wait for the answers to roll in.
It’s worth noting that only members of a group can vote on that group’s poll. For example, you can’t share a group poll with your overall Facebook friends list because it’s likely that a lot of your friends aren’t in that same group with you.
Next steps after creating your first Facebook poll
These days, there are a lot of ways to hear from the masses. You can check out a customer review site such as Yelp or (ahem, ahem) G2 Crowd to read user opinions. You can leverage survey software to conduct research polls.
Or you can send a selfie to a group chat to get your girls’ opinions. And when you want the thoughts and perspective of your trusted Facebook family, polls or surveys are the way to go.
Grace Pinegar is a lifelong storyteller with an extensive background in various forms such as acting, journalism, improv, research, and content marketing. She was raised in Texas, educated in Missouri, worked in Chicago, and is now a proud New Yorker. (she/her/hers)