A marketing campaign that wants high levels of social media engagement needs to take into account the times in which you post your content.
Creating informative and relevant content might find itself buried on all social media platforms if it is pushed out at the wrong time.
It’s important to post your content at relevant times to get ahead of the curve. Let’s try to break down when the best times to publish your content.
Based on Target Audience, Market, or Niche
We are reporting very broad times, and your niche might not fall within these generally recommended times.
If you think that your social media post timing will be more or less difficult for your industry, do more research on your specific niche.
Sprout Social recently completed a study on the best times to post to varying social media platforms. They provided users with industry-specific heat maps that show medium to high-level engagement, like this one below:
By Social Media Channel
If you are not posting to all social media channels, then you’ll want to account for these channels in your marketing strategy STAT.
While there are some growing outlier social media channels out there, it’s fine to establish yourself on the top four: LinkedIn, Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter.
There is no exact science to identifying when is the right time to post to a certain social media channel. However, you can take into consideration the numerous factors mentioned earlier, such as popular wake times per time zone, and the times in which your content is most regularly accessed.
If you’re unsure or unable to navigate this aspect of your content marketing management system, there are businesses out there that specialize in building positive social media relationships.
LinkedIn is social media for professionals. LinkedIn is by and large the first place outside of your own website that you should be generating content for.
According to Hubspot, there is an optimal time to post on LinkedIn:
Hubspot’s recommended time zones from Central Daylight Time (CDT or UTC -5), but these can easily be adjusted for your geographical or preferred time zone. CDT is five hours behind Coordinated Universal Time (UTC).
Posting between 3 PM and 5 PM CDT is around 4 PM and 6 PM EST, but it will be between 9 PM and 11 PM in England. Abiding by these times will mean that you are pushing content out for major global hubs like New York City and London, England. However, these might not work if you’re trying to market to a local audience.
Posting during these optimal times will also put you against high-traffic and competitive bids. If you’d like to market in a more unique way, then posting content around these times could lead to a unique and more personalized level of engagement.
As with all of your social media accounts, take advantage of the built-in analytics. LinkedIn analytics will provide data through user-profile interactions. This data is unique and will help tailor how and when your brand should be posting on LinkedIn.
Instagram may not be as popular for some businesses, but it is an actual goldmine for small businesses, creative hubs and people selling to unique audiences.
Instagram is also a place where people go to get away from the business-oriented networks of Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn. In this way, posting on Instagram will be drastically different than the other channels, and publishing times are unique as well. This is why Instagram marketing is its own form of marketing.
Expertvoice argues that Instagram post timing differs by day:
- Sunday from 10:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m.
- Monday from 11:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.
- Tuesday from 5:00 a.m., 9:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m.
- Wednesday from 5:00 a.m.,11:00 a.m. and 3:00 p.m.
- Thursday from 5:00 a.m., 11:00 a.m. and 3:00 to 4:00 p.m.
- Friday from 5:00 a.m., 9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.
- Saturday from 11:00 a.m.
These again are going to vary based on your marketing factors and also the times your audience engages with your content. The Instagram Insight Analytics provides necessary data of the way your own account works. You can even test out a variety of post timings by posting similar articles around similar or different times of the day.
Instagram stories are another positive way to engage with followers. Some viewers prefer Instagram stories because they are able to see more content from an isolated poster.
Knowing when you should be posting on Facebook can be a challenge in and of itself. Since Facebook is largely a friends-and-family social media channel, the mixture of business and advertising content can be disruptive.
As always, knowing when you should post your content should be based on your data and the content’s relevance. You can easily access your Facebook profile’s data with Facebook Insights to optimize when to publish your content.
As you can see, Facebook tracks the reach that each post garners and the level of engagement that it hits. Published times listed to the left allow you to categorize the level of engagement based on post times.
Once the ideal time to post has been identified, stay on top of the news feed and schedule Facebook posts.
Scheduling your posts will allow that they are seen during optimal hours. Who knows? Maybe a post will go viral.
Twitter is admittedly one of the more difficult platforms to post for. Luckily, there are several apps and software specifically designed to automate your Twitter posts.
According to the American Marketing Association, Twitter posts will thrive depending on the date and hour:
- Best times to post on Twitter: Wednesday at 9 a.m. and Friday at 9 a.m.
- Best days: Tuesday and Wednesday are the best days to post on Twitter.
- Most consistent engagement: Monday through Friday from 8 a.m.–4 p.m.
- Worst day: Saturday gets the least engagement.
- Lowest engagement: Occurs every day from 10 p.m–4 a.m.
These findings were from a Sprout Social study, which also took into account the industry. If you are selling goods, then these times might differ compared to media engagement.
In general, posting during the mornings and evenings of the desired timezone will get your brand a lot more engagement. This also drops on weekends.
Additionally, you’ll need to monitor your Twitter traffic trends. You can take this into account through the raw data produced by your Twitter analytics account
If posting your content was easy, then anyone would be able to do it. Unfortunately, posting content for social media is like a science
Timing your post for social media will also different compared to when you would post a blog, which we talked about in a piece earlier in 2019.
You’ll want to consider factors like the social media channel you’re posting to, the target audience and their geographical location, important or trending events in your niche market, and the type of content you’re pushing out.
Once you’ve identified the best times for your brand to publish, we highly recommend automating your social media posts.