Best Time To Post On Social Media

We all know the social media metrics that are considered important and we also know that we should post at a certain time to get the best engagement possible however the jury is still out when that best time is.

By Noman Kenneth, 29 November 2018


Retweets, likes, shares, follows, reach and engagement.  We all know the social media metrics that are considered important and we also know that we should post at a certain time to get the best engagement possible however the jury is still out when that best time is.

Social media has grown, changed and advanced as technologies progressed. Gone are the chronological timelines, replaced by smart algorithms which predict the relevance of the content to the user.

Below we’ll look at the four big social media outlets, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and LinkedIn to see what they have to say about the issue. 

Facebook

At the start of this year, Facebook announced a number of changes which sent social media gurus into a mild panic.

Adam Mossier, Head of News Feed at Facebook stated that “Today we use signals like how many people react to, comment on or share posts to determine how high they appear in News Feed.

With this update, we will also prioritize posts that spark conversations and meaningful interactions between people. To do this, we will predict which posts you might want to interact with your friends about, and show these posts higher in feed. These are posts that inspire back-and-forth discussion in the comments and posts that you might want to share and react to – whether that’s a post from a friend seeking advice, a friend asking for recommendations for a trip, or a news article or video prompting lots of discussions.

We will also prioritize posts from friends and family over public content, consistent with our News Feed values.”

Inevitably this means that businesses will have to work even harder for their content, such as videos and other posts, to be shown to those who like a page and the wider public. It also means;

  • Less branded and business content being displayed in newsfeeds
  • Pages are likely to see watch time and referral traffic decrease
  • Pages that prompt conversations between friends will see less of an impact

Instagram

Instagram’s updated algorithm helps to surface new posts and followed suit with Facebook and Twitter to crack down on “inauthentic activity” to keep Instagram a “vibrant community where people can connect with the people and things they love.”

They said “Based on your feedback, we’re also making changes to ensure that newer posts are more likely to appear first in feed. With these changes, your feed will feel more fresh, and you won’t miss the moments you care about. So if your best friend shares a selfie from her vacation in Australia, it will be waiting for you when you wake up.”

However, Instagram is not purely chronological; it still works by displaying content based on user engagement.

It works on;

  • Probability, that you’ll be interested in the content
  • Date the post was shared
  • Prior interactions with the account posting

As for the inauthentic activity, they will start the following;

  • Remove inauthentic likes, followers and comments
  • Inform identified accounts that inauthentic activity given to other accounts has been removed
  • Accounts that use third-party apps to grow audiences will all see an impact

LinkedIn

LinkedIn feed updates are based on countless signals across 3 main categories;

  • Identity: Who you are, what skills you possess, where you work and your connections
  • Content: The number of times an update was viewed, the number of times it was liked, the nature of the update, topics, people and companies mentioned
  • Behaviour: Frequent interactions, content you’ve liked and shared in the past and where you spend your time in the feed

Twitter

Perhaps, the simplest one of the lot, the timeline is exactly that! Tweets are ranked at the top in a reverse chronological order. 

Twitter did make some changes to its functionality much to the dismay of the users which kicked off a series of tweets #RIPTwitter and sparked a tweet from Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey which concluded that We never planned to reorder timelines next week” and “And we're going to continue to refine it to make Twitter feel more, not less, live!”

So timing definitely matters in the world of Twitter. 

Time Zones

Time zones can prove tricky if your audience is located in different time zones; in theory, the best option could be to post covering both time zones or cater to the biggest audience. The best course of action would be to use analytics tool and choose the best time to post, i.e. when most of your audience in online and hope that social media algorithms deem your content relevant enough for others to catch a glimpse of it when they log in later.

Facebook also offers a restricted audience posting feature which can allow you to segment your audience and posts updates to them specifically.  

What time should you post it?

Research suggests that there are a number of things to consider, including the kind of content being posted and the aim of the content. A quick run around the office concluded that all of us seem to scroll through our mobiles as soon as we get up and periodically through the day, lunchtime etc.

So again, the best course of action besides the research carried out would be to find out when your audience is online.

Facebook

According to research, the best time to post for increasing shares and click through rate is between 12 noon and 4 PM, late into the week and on weekends, including:

  • Saturday and Sunday from 12 PM to 1 PM
  • Thursday and Friday from 1 PM to 4 PM
  • Wednesday at 3 PM

Instagram

The general best times to post, according to the research are:

  • 8 AM to 9 AM
  • 2 AM
  • 5 AM

LinkedIn

Research suggested that posts made during the middle of the week get more engagement than those towards the start and very end of the week, the times to consider when posting to LinkedIn:

  • 5 PM to 6 PM
  • 7 PM to 8 PM
  • 12 PM

Twitter

The following days should be kept in mind when thinking about the best time to tweet;

  • Wednesday: noon and 5 PM to 6 PM
  • Monday through to Friday: 12 noon to 3 PM and 5 PM

Finally…

It’s important to remember that user behaviour changes more often than research gets carried out so considering the best time to post think about;

  • target demographic or end consumer of the content
  • the industry you operate in
  • the function of social media is within your organisation
  •  the manner you engage your audience and how they engage with your posts – image-based content, video-based or text-based content?

If you need help creating an engaging social media strategy, then please don’t hesitate to call us or pop in for a chat, we’re right next to Glasgow Central Station and a 5 min walk about from Queen Street Station.  

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