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By Peg Corwin -

Do Questions in Status Updates Work to Engage Facebook Fans? Yes and No

On our Facebook for Business page, we ask questions in status updates.

Do questions in status updates actually get Facebook Fans commenting on and Liking your content?  Not as much as we might think, reports Momentus Media in Don’t Ask: Questions on Facebook Aren’t So Engaging.

Ask for Likes, Don’t Ask Questions?
questions in status updates

Based on an analysis of 10,000 updates with and without question marks, Jackie Cohen of AllFacebook quotes Momentus Media research showing that questions in status updates get less engagement than non-questions.  “This contradicts what many engagement theorists have suggested: Asking questions in a Facebook post garners 23 percent fewer responses from fans than posts that don’t ask anything.”

Tables showing Momentus Media reseach findings are at right.

If You Want Interaction, Ask for a Like

Again quoting this research, Cohen concludes:  “…asking people to like a status update — without using a question mark — remains the most effective way to engage fans.”

In other words, “Here’s a link to Facebook plans to change news feeds.  Please Like this.” gets more Likes and comments than “Here’s a link on Facebook plans to change news feeds.  Do you think this will decrease Fan interaction?”   I guess that makes sense, because Liking is easier and quicker than commenting.  But I don’t think that means we should stop asking questions.

Ask for Comments to Get Them

I was surprised by the recommendation to ask for comments directly:  “If you really want comments, specifically asking people to comment is more effective than posing a question or making a statement.”   I tried it but find asking questions gets more of the kind of interaction I am looking for.

Page admins, what is your experience?  Please leave a comment.  (There, I did both, asked a question and made a statement asking for a comment.  I’m covering all my bases.)

More on Facebook Questions

See our page chocked full of info on asking good questions in status updates to get Fans talking on Facebook.

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