There is a science to effective social media posting. You need to determine how to optimize your posts for each individual platform. When you post to popular networks like Facebook, Twitter and Instagram, you have to understand the audiences. You need to do more than just post links at random times and hope for the best outcome.
How to Create Great Social Media Posts
Important skills like knowing the best location for a CTA in your YouTube video description, how to add a condensed link in the text of a LinkedIn post, or why faces should not be included as Pinterest pin images, could dictate whether you sink or swim for the gold in the ocean of social media. Also, if you have consistently been putting in a lot of time and money into growing your business on these social networks, you want to ensure that you are leaning in the direction of success and monetary growth.
The Importance of Social Media Timing
In addition to becoming an expert at devising perfect posts, you must also grasp the art of social media timing. This is something that social media advertisers across the globe have been trying to master for years.
In this communal arena, it is all about the timing. There is no point in putting your best posts out there if no one is around to see them. A larger audience equals more opportunities to engage followers and build meaningful connections. More exposure and lasting relationships will only benefit your growing business.
When Are the Best Times to Post on Social Media?
No one has come up with a definitive answer for the absolute best times for each platform, but there are countless resources available listing the most optimal times to post. You first need to understand your target audience, what this group wants, and which social media platform they use.
Twitter, Facebook and Instagram: The Best Times to Post
There is a constant stream of information posted on Twitter. It takes education and skill to get the timing just right. There is a very tight window of opportunity with each Tweet, only about 24 minutes. That is four times less than the chance you get with a post to Facebook, which reaches 75 percent of its potential audience within five hours. A Tweet at its midpoint reaches the same mark in under three hours. This is why when you post is so vital. There is only a short time span to reach as many viewers as possible. The following tips will help you determine the best times to post business tweets:
Use Separate Handles for Each Region
- Create a separate Twitter handle for each location. You can use a social media management tool like HootSuite, Buffer or IFTTT to monitor all of your handles in one place. Engagement levels can be tracked on social media reports when you build an active following for each Twitter handle.
Utilize the Most Productive Tool
- There are a lot of options available to help you find the best times to post on Twitter. Investigate and find the right tool. Audiense and AutoSchedule by Hootsuite select optimal times based on how your most engaging Tweets have performed in the past.
Always Engage Your Target Audience
- Be sure to engage your social media followers with every post. Knowing the best times to reach your audience is step two. Step one begins with compelling social media engagement.
This is a compilation of data from a variety of sources. The following list summarizes the most efficient times for businesses to Tweet:
- Maximum retweets: Noon, 5 p.m., and 6 p.m.
- Higher click-thru rates: Noon and 6 p.m.
- B2B best days to Tweet: Monday through Friday
- B2C best days to Tweet: Wednesday and weekends
- Monday through Friday from noon to 3 p.m., and Wednesdays from 5 to 6 p.m.
- The best time for the most retweets is 5 p.m. on weekdays.
Clearly, there are common trends, with some overlaps. But there is no definitive answer. However, this is great information to guide you through your own trial and effort. Begin tweeting at the previously stated intervals and note when your audience is most engaged.
Facebook offers a plethora of personal connections intertwined with brand interactions. It can be tricky trying to navigate through and pinpoint the best times to post for business purposes. The Facebook newsfeed algorithm complicates things even more. The upside is that an enormous 75 percent of your engagement will occur in the first five hours of posting. Although this is not a tremendous timeframe, it is sufficient, and it beats the span of a Tweet. But keep in mind, first impressions reach their peak long before engagement. After a mere two and a half hours, the maximum 75 percent of your Facebook post’s impressions have been reached.
It is crucial that you pay close attention to when your target audience is most active on this social media giant. Much like Twitter, the best posting times on Facebook vary according to your business. To get the ball rolling here is a quick list of suggestions:
- The most shares: Thursdays and Fridays at 1 p.m.
- The most clicks: Thursdays and Fridays at 3 p.m.
- Mondays through Thursdays from 6 to 8 p.m.
- Thursdays and Fridays from 1 to 3 p.m.
- Thursdays and Fridays from 1 to 3 p.m.
The common trend is that Thursdays and Fridays between 1 and 3 p.m. are the most effective times to post to Facebook. These times are a good place to start testing your campaign.
The name Instagram has historically suggested that users should be posting instantly. That’s not exactly the way it works nowadays. The number of likes your posts generate determines the impact of your approach. Compelling content that is strategically placed at the best possible times is the key to successful Instagram engagement.
You must know how your audience operates each day and plan your strategy accordingly. Are you aware of the peak time that users first login to Instagram every morning? Is your target audience employed full-time? In what region do they reside? Consider such factors as commuting time, lunch breaks and free time between business meetings. Think about all of this data when you put together your schedule of Instagram posts that correspond best with your target audience’s usage.
To help you devise the best possible Instagram posting schedule, here are some recommended times to test out:
All day Monday through Thursday with the exception of 3 to 4 p.m.
- Wednesday at 5 p.m.
- Monday through Friday between 6 a.m. and noon.
Posting volume is relatively low in the morning, but users are still regularly viewing their feeds on smartphones. There is a large audience present at the time when fewer competitors are trying to get their attention.
Consider your industry and goals, understand your audience, and think about your overall plan to come up with the right time to achieve optimal results. There is no magic wand or crystal ball with definitive answers. You will need to do some testing.
The Benefits of Posting on LinkedIn
Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram are some of the fastest growing social media platforms out there. This should come as no surprise. Instagram is currently growing by leaps and bounds. But what you might not know is that there has been a huge rise in LinkedIn membership. It is the largest online social networking site for working professionals and the third fastest growing social media platform in the world.
LinkedIn refers four times more users to your landing page than Facebook and Twitter. Now, both of these powerhouses are the leaders when it comes to shared visual media, blog posts and stories. But LinkedIn reigns supreme in regards to directing traffic to your website.
According to a two-year study involving 60 corporate web pages and two million monthly visits, it was discovered that LinkedIn accounts for almost two-thirds all social media referrals.
Referrals to Corporate Web Pages:
- LinkedIn: 64 percent
- Facebook: 17 percent
- Twitter: 14 percent
All kinds of leads stem from social media, therefore this type of data is very useful in determining where such leads are headed. Traffic that comes from LinkedIn is most likely headed for your landing page, rather than a blog post or a satellite page. Consider this information, and keep content consistent on your corporate page and in your LinkedIn profile to avoid confusing your audience.
When Should I Post to LinkedIn?
To access the largest number of LinkedIn users and potentially drive them to your website, post when the bulk of the audience is viewing the network. LinkedIn has reported that prime time is Monday through Friday, mornings and middays. Maximum reach is usually during business hours. There are no specific peak hours during that timeframe.
Once you have figured out the best times to post, the next factor is how often posting should occur. It has been established that 20 posts each month are enough to reach about 60 percent of your target audience.
Obviously, more posts will reach more people, but eventually, the rate of returns will diminish. Some of your audience will remain too difficult to reach mainly because they rarely log on to LinkedIn. You need to focus on the regulars who actively seek top updates.
However, some businesses have more time and resources available to post more than the suggested 20 times. The best marketers on LinkedIn post an average of three or four times per day, equaling about 80 monthly posts.
The simplest strategy, to begin with, is to stick with the 20 post rule and experiment if you see evidence that a heavier posting schedule will provide more benefits. It has been proven that 20 posts per month will work well with the best times to post each day. This schedule can easily be achieved with one post each weekday for a month.