7 Great Ways Brands Are Using Instagram’s Questions Function

Instagram's questions function

In July 2018, Instagram launched another entertaining and interactive function for users to play with. “Questions” is a function that could be added to your Stories to permit your followers to submit questions. Each question you receive could be answered publicly in an additional Story.

Users love Instagram partly because it is such a conversational platform. There are a lot of ways to connect with accounts and brands, whether by commenting on their posts, sharing their Stories, messaging privately, or responding to fun function like Questions.

The Instagram’s Questions function is pretty easy to use and elevates your Instagram Stories with added creativity and engagement. In this post, we’ll show you everything about Instagram’s Questions function.

How to use Instagram’s “Questions” function

Step 1. Find the Questions sticker and add it to your Story

Instagram Questions sticker screenshot

Step 2. Compose your question

The default text is “Ask me a question”, however, you could change it to anything you want (up to 50 characters!).

Once it is posted, your followers can reply for as long as your Story is active (24 hours, or whenever you delete it).

Instagram Questions sticker screenshot

Step 3. View your responses

You could see the responses by swiping up on the Story itself, the same method you’d to see a list of who has viewed it. The responses will seem in a horizontal stream above the list of views, and you could swipe through them.

Instagram Questions sticker screenshot

You may also see them by checking your notifications tab, where they will appear with the list of likes and comments on your Posts.

Step 4. Post responses

Tap the person replies to open a new Story that will reply to it. You could see who has submitted responses, however, they show anonymously once you share them. Only the text of the question will be seen to your followers.

Instagram Questions sticker screenshot

After you reply to a question, it will show as “Replied”, so you could keep track of which ones you’ve answered.

Instagram Questions sticker screenshot

3 ideas for using Instagram’s “Questions” function

Including Questions to your Stories is simple, however, with a little planning it may also be helpful for your content strategy and your brand reputation. Here are some things to remember while using Instagram’s  Questions function.

1. Don’t overdo it.

Every time Instagram rolls out a new function, it could feel like a tidal wave is crashing over your Stories as every brand scrambles to use it first. The result could be, as one article put it bluntly, lots of “boring content and pointless answers.”

Don’t give your followers New Function Fatigue! Use Questions (and all new functions) sparingly and deliberately. It is more essential to use it well than use it a lot.

Below are some examples of brands using Questions in a creative and engaging method.

2. Make it count.

You put lots of effort into the content strategy behind your posts and Stories—ensuring they match with your brand voice and style and align with your business targets. So take the same strategy here.

You should have a purpose for what you want to achieve by answering questions, whether that’s gathering product feedback, building trust with followers, or including momentum to a marketing campaign. Otherwise, you’ll waste your efforts and your followers’ responses.

3. Don’t forget to reply!

This may appear obvious, however when you are asking your followers to submit questions, try to be able to reply to them. Your followers expect that from you, so don’t let them down.

Dedicate some time to monitoring and answering to all submitted questions. Take a look at your Instagram analytics, like your typical rate of Story replies, to get a sense of how many to expect.

Depending on your firm and your followers, you could get tough questions or even negative feedback, so you should be prepared to field these. When you are recovering from a social media fail, Instagram’s Questions function could help rebuild trust and demonstrate transparency.

7 ways brands are using the “Ask a Question” function

This easy function is surprisingly versatile! Here are just some methods brands are using it to make an impact.

1. To answer product questions

You could tell your followers, what you think they need to know about your merchandise, or you could allow them to tell you what they are wondering. This also gives you the perfect chance to showcase what sets your products apart from the competition.

Knixwear, an innovative intimates line, uses Questions to reply to customer inquiries and share what makes their merchandise special.

Knixwear Instagram stories screenshot

2. To connect with followers over shared values

Not all posts have to be about sales or conversions. Posts that are meant to construct connection and community matter too.

Questions, with their conversational format, could be an effective tool for promoting a sense of community and making discussions around your brand’s values. Outdoor retailer MEC achieved this by utilizing Questions to talk with followers about World Mental Health Day.

MEC Instagram stories screenshot

MEC Instagram stories screenshot

These posts were not about driving people to the website or advertising new products. Instead, they reinforced the values of the company and provide followers with a chance to share self-care tips and feel connected to their brand on a personal level.

3. To run a Q&A

The simplest use of this function? A classic Q&A.

The trick to that is to ensure you’re offering an informative, interesting point of view. Don’t just let anybody reply questions about anything. Instead, connect audiences to an expert who could provide unique insights into a topic.

For example, the Vancouver Art Gallery did an #AskACurator series, with career ideas for budding curators. These kinds of posts appeal to your followers who’re in the authentic, behind-the-scenes reality of your business.

Vancouver Art Gallery Instagram stories screenshot

Vancouver Art Gallery Instagram stories screenshot

4. To host an Instagram takeover

A takeover is a fun method to reach new audiences and inject some fun into your regular content, such as when your favorite TV shows do crossover episodes. Recently, CBC meteorologist Johanna Wagstaffe handed the reins to make-up artist Jen Vanderzalm to share a new perspective with her followers.

Instagram stories screenshot

Takeovers invigorate your account by increasing your reach to new people who could not be familiar with your brand. Questions are a fun and accessible method for these new audiences to get to know you and why they should follow you!

5. To ask questions of your followers

Instagram’s Questions function is not just for getting your followers to ask you questions. You may also use it to pose a question and gather responses. Not like a Poll, it permits you to pose open-ended questions, rather than limiting your followers to selecting from two options.

For instance, Starbucks asked followers about their favorite iced coffee orders. This provided them with content ideas as well as customer insights.

Instagram stories screenshot

Instagram stories screenshot

Used this way, it could be a valuable tool for getting input, feedback or suggestions from your followers. It could also help you plan your content strategy, by asking followers what they are enjoying or interested in.

6. To support a campaign

During an Instagram campaign, you are directing lots of content toward a single objective. A part of the challenge is keeping that content varied and fascinating so that your followers don’t get tired of your campaign messaging.

Questions could be the perfect addition, reinforcing your key message, however, keeping things fresh.

Montreal-based retailer Frank + Oak ran a marketing campaign to promote their Style Box subscription, using Instagram’s Questions function to give more detail about its features and encourage followers to sign up.

Instagram stories screenshot

Frank & Oak Instagram stories screenshot

7. To curate an FAQ

When you find yourself receiving repeat inquiries about your merchandise, services, or business, the Questions could be a useful method to organize and reply to these.

Use Questions to compile a Frequently Asked Questions section, which you could pin to the top of your profile as a Highlight. You could see this strategy on the University of Toronto’s profile, where their “Ask Me” Highlight includes popular questions from new students.

university of toronto instagram stories

This list is not exhaustive. There are lots of other methods you could include Questions function to add an interactive element to your Stories and learn more about your followers. It is simply another one of the rising set of choices for making exciting, engaging content on Instagram.

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