The ‘hows’ and ‘whens’ of publishing on social media
If you’re creating content for social media, you know that one of the main challenges you face is having your message heard above the noise and getting more eyes on your posts. As social media algorithms increasingly move towards relevance-based content, businesses must continually refine their tactics in creating high-quality content and sharing it at the best possible time for enhanced engagement. Knowing how and when to post on every social platform is one important way to stay a step ahead of the competition.
How to share content to social media
Know your audience
To understand how and when to share your content on social media platforms, you need to know your audience. How old are they? Where do they live? What’s their commute like? What do they do for work? What are their challenges and pain points? What social networks do they use? Do they scroll through their feeds on a phone or computer? Answering these questions will help you find the answers for your social media publishing scheduling.
Consider your audience’s location
If your audience predominantly lives in the same time zone as you, you’ll find it easier to work out when they’re on social media and what time to share your content. However, if you have a global social media audience, you might need to schedule your content throughout the entire 24-hour day period.
Use the right tools
Using the best tools to schedule your content on social media platforms is also key to enhancing your audience engagement. While it might make sense at first to schedule your Facebook posts through Facebook itself, tools such as Hootsuite can make it a lot easier to manage multiple social media platforms in one space. From a single dashboard, you can post to all of your social channels and use built-in analytics to see which times yield the best results.
Keep an eye on the competition
One of the most effective tools in working out how and when to share your content on social media is knowing what your competition does to get results. When do your competitors get a high amount of likes, shares, retweets, reactions, and comments? Once you’ve pinpointed it, test those times for yourself. You won’t always find that the same times and days work, but it’s always worth noting and experimenting with.
Continue to test and optimise
That brings us to our next point. It’s important that you continue to test and optimise your social media engagement. Find the times that work best for you now, but don’t just set and forget it! Audience habits and platform algorithms change and they change often so it’s important that you adapt to those changes to keep your engagement up. Make sure you consistently experiment with your content too. Be sure to create social media reports to track when you get the most engagement for each posting time and determine how often you’ll rerun experiments on your social channels.
When to share to social media platforms
When it comes to sharing engaging content on your Facebook page, authenticity is key. The ever-evolving Facebook algorithm means it’s more important now to know when to reach your audience so that they are able to interact with and share your content. Wednesday is typically the best day to share content to Facebook as audiences are generally using Facebook more frequently between 8am and 3pm. The worst time to share to Facebook is on the weekend and before 7am and after 5pm when your audience’s attention is likely elsewhere. These patterns can help you work out how and when your audiences are using Facebook.
Peak engagement on Instagram is usually around midday during the week, with lower engagement on weekends. Wednesday and Friday are the most active days of the week, with Sunday being the worst. Instagram is the second most logged-in social media site daily so it’s an important one to remember sharing content to. In terms of consistency, engagement occurs on Instagram throughout the working week, from Monday to Friday between 9am and 4pm. Just as with Facebook, engagement dips later in the evening, after 9pm and earlier in the morning, before 6am.
As with Facebook and Instagram, Twitter’s engagement is higher during the week, and much lower on the weekend. The best days to post are Wednesday and Friday, at around 9am. The worst day is Saturday as audiences generally aren’t active on the platform of a weekend. In general, across all industries, Twitter audiences log into the platform in the early morning to catch up on the latest news and updates they may have missed. Engagement drops off later in the day, with the lowest engagement happening every day after 10pm.
LinkedIn generally targets a more specific audience than the other social networks. Its focus on professional users and niche audiences is no reason to ignore its marketing power though. LinkedIn is an ideal destination for lead generation with the most reliable engagement occurring during the working week from Tuesday to Friday between 8am and 2pm. Engagement drops off outside of working hours after 8pm every day. As the platform tends to be used during work hours, the weekend is the worst time for engagement.
Now that you know how to find out when your social media platform audiences are most engaged, it’s time to get sharing! Just remember to consistently and regularly test the level of engagement on your posts across each platform for the best results.