As most businesses and marketers are well aware, successful digital marketing is heavily reliant on social media engagement. Social media is not just a forum for marketing, it also acts as an extension of your business and it’s culture. Regardless of the social media platform you opt to use, it is important to consider when you are posting in order to better reach your audience. After all, it does not really matter if you are posting the greatest content in the world if your audience is not online to see it, respond to it, and share it.
When is the best time to get a user to click the Like button, comment on your Facebook post, and share it with others? Social Media Today reports that engagement rates on Facebook tend to be higher when workers hit a workday slump. In fact, Facebook engagement rates are approximately 18 percent higher on Thursdays and Fridays, meaning that the best time to schedule your posts for Facebook is often toward the end of the week rather than the beginning. In terms of the best time of day to post on Facebook, BufferSocial reports that around 1pm is the best time to get the most shares while 3pm is the best time to get more clicks.
Twitter usage can be somewhat difficult to pin down due to the fact that many people may check their Twitter accounts multiple times per day. Making matters even more complicated is the fact that tweets can have a fairly short shelf life. TechRepublic reports that the lifetime engagement for a tweet peaks at around 18 minutes.
Still, according to MediaBistro, Twitter engagement has been shown to increase by 30 percent on the weekends. During the week, engagement tends to peak between 1pm and 3pm, usually when workers are on a lunch break.
When is the best time to make the most of Google+? According to SocialNewsDaily, the best times to post on Google+ is between 9am and 11am. The worst times to post are between 6pm and 7am. In order to ensure that you take full advantage of Google+ audience engagement, consider posting during the middle of the week. Dharilo points out that Wednesdays around 9am are the best time to post on Google+. Keep in mind that as is the case with all social media platforms, this can vary somewhat based on your own industry and experience. According to MediaBistro, it is important to analyze your G+ page as well as your audience to determine the best time to obtain the best results.
LinkedIn can be a great platform if you are a B2B business. Users of LinkedIn are more likely to take a few moments to review news before they begin their workday and as they are wrapping up their day or commuting. As a result, the peak times for this platform are primarily just before and after work, meaning that between 7am and 8:30 am and 5pm to 6pm are the best times to post, according to IT World. Tuesday and Thursday are the best days of the week to post on LinkedIn.
The takeaway from this is that you need to post when your target audience is online and that can vary, often dramatically between platforms. Buffer reports that they have a very dynamic schedule in terms of posting content to the various social media platforms. It looks something like this:
With so many different best times for various platforms, you may wonder how you can possibly keep up with ensuring that posts go out at precisely the right time without spending all of your time managing your posts. The good news is that there are numerous tools available to assist you.
When it comes to sending out a tweet and ensuring it is published at precisely the right time, consider using FutureTweets. With this service, all you need to do is type your tweet, select the publish date and time and then click the schedule button.
If you're managing multiple social networks, you may need something a bit more robust so that you are able to manage everything from a single dashboard. HootSuite is currently considered one of the most versatile tools out there for scheduling posts across multiple networks. By taking advantage of the AutoSchedule feature on HootSuite, you can schedule posts in advance and at opportune times.
Keep in mind that while general statistics can tell you a lot about the best time to post, nothing beats your own experience when it comes to analyzing the posting times that work best for your followers and content. Take advantage of social media tools such as Rignite, SproutSocial and Argyle to assess the posting times that tend to generate the most engagement and interest among your followers. Ultimately, the sharing and viewing habits of your own followers on platforms such as Twitter and Facebook may well prove to be different from followers of other brands. Take the time to study your own analytics and learn from those patterns as you work to develop an effective schedule.