A business friend recently placed a poll on LinkedIn. He asked “Post-COVID, what is the first thing on your to-do list?”

There were three choices

  • Travel
  • Restaurant outing
  • Spend time at the office.

Can you guess the most popular answer?

Some 80% of respondents said they will travel. Another 17% said they would go to a restaurant. And 3% suggested they would spend time at the office. (I suppose that’s because we all seem to live in our office these days).

While just a small sampling, the poll provides some interesting clues. There’s a clue my travel agency client would want to know about. Another clue is for my restaurant client. And there are clues about effectively using LinkedIn polls.

Here are five good reasons you’ll want to consider adding LinkedIn polls to your list of post possibilities.

  1. See who is really engaged on your platform. You may have 50, 500 or 5,000 contacts via your LinkedIn. But how many are active? And how many respond and read your posts? Keep track of your engaged contacts for future use in any number of ways.
  2. Start a conversation. If a contact responds to your poll, it provides a great conversation opener next time you speak. Because you both participated, it shows an affinity of interest to some degree. Sometimes it’s just a simple conversation, but sometimes there’s a reason they responded and that reason could provide you with opportunity for a discussion of a product or service or further interaction.
  3. Feel people out about a new service, product or even direction.  You’ll never get a definitive book on public opinion through one of these polls, but you might just get enough response or enough of an overwhelming result to prove a point or provide direction. Again, I look forward to my next discussion with my travel agent client.
  4. An organization can quickly set up a poll among its members for fast feedback. Feedback may be better if directed to a like-minded list of LinkedIn group participants. These are folks already in the zone. They care because they are in the group and the topic may have as special a meaning to them as it does to you.
  5. Let people know you are curious about what they think. Starting a poll is a way say you are listening. Think about this: If you get the results of a poll and are able to respond in some way to the results with some poll-guided content, your participants really will feel heard.

In reality, LinkedIn polling probably is mostly good for a quirky change of pace to your regular diet of posts. Too many people run a steady diet of of self-promotional drudgery. The poll is a great way to break that monotony and provide a little more interest and depth to your personal posting.

It’s one more tool in a growing list of capabilities for the LinkedIn user.

To create a poll on LinkedIn from your home page.

1.       Click start a post.

2.       Click create a poll.

3.       Type your question, in up to 140 characters in the appropriate space.

4.       You can have as many as four possible poll answers. Fill in the black and add up to two more if needed.

5.       A dropdown menu will give you options from setting the poll for one day to two weeks.

6.       Click done.

7.       Edit your poll options and add a preamble to your poll and post it. Your preamble can be simple, or you can write about why you are polling or how you are going to use the results. CAUTION: This is the final opportunity to edit the poll itself. Once it is posted, you can edit your comment, but not the poll.

8.       You can determine who you want to share the poll with when you hit post.

9.       Once the poll is posted. You can see who voted for which option by clicking on the number of votes. This can be very valuable intelligence.

10.   The poll will automatically disappear after the selected days in the field so stay on top of results.


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