Creating and sharing great content is central to developing a good digital strategy – but to increase social media engagement levels, you need to understand your audience. You might think this just means posting the kind of content that your audience will enjoy reading (and sharing), but actually, timing is also vital.
Plenty of research has been conducted to help businesses increase engagement, and you may be surprised to learn that the type of content, the industry you work in and the platforms you use all affect when you should post on social media.
Knowledge is power
If you want to increase your likes, shares, retweets and click-through rates (CTRs), you need to know when your audience is primed to receive – and what times of the day, and the week, are most likely to boost your campaign. This knowledge will allow you to create a more effective strategy. Here are some of the key parameters affecting different platforms...
As you’d expect from a business-focused platform, the most activity happens during the week – peaking at late morning on a Tuesday and tailing off towards Friday, when people are starting to think about the weekend instead of work!
Posting content on LinkedIn is most effective around lunchtimes and again towards the end of the working day, so if you’re only posting once a day, do it around 12pm or 5pm. It’s pretty pointless to use this platform late evenings or Saturdays and Sundays, as user levels drop significantly.
Great for both B2B and B2C businesses, but the former see higher engagement levels during the week, and the latter at weekends – this makes total sense in context: consumers are more active when not working, while professionals are more likely to engage with other businesses during work hours.
CTRs and retweets are more likely if you share your content at lunchtimes or at around 5 or 6pm – this is when people are taking a break from work, or heading home and looking for something to do during the commute. The morning commute time zone also sees higher activity levels – maybe the early bird really does catch the worm with this avian-themed social media platform!
Post at least a few times a day, to keep your presence fresh in the ever-moving timeline, and if you want to almost double your chance of generating retweets, add an eye-catching image to your post.
Users engage with Facebook predominately when they’re seeking a brain-break from work-related activities, which means mid-week between 8am and early evening are the best times to post. You can narrow that down even further, to Thursday and Fridays and early/mid afternoons, for the best chances of users clicking on a posted link.
You should be posting at least once a day – so around lunchtime is optimum. You can monitor your ‘Insights’ function to see when your fans are most active, allowing you to tailor your strategy to suit.
Out of hours
If you’re happy to manage your social media outside of the most common working hours, you should consider adding a Pinterest and Tumblr accounts into your strategy.
Pinterest has proved to be a really successful engagement platform for brands, with Saturday mornings the best time to post. Tumblr users are most likely to be online and interacting with posts during late evening.