Social: How often to post?

Research shows the optimal times to tweet, to post, to reach out on social.

How often to post your content onto social networks is a difficult nut to crack because different networks work in different ways. Twitter seems almost instantaneous, but research suggests that Tweets are active and effective for around 18 minutes according to Moz vice president for social strategy, Peter Bray.

Facebook is a little slower and more involved, and the posts remain active for longer – up to 90 minutes according to Wisemetrics.

Considering the frequency of posting is important because you do not want to stray across the line from informative to annoying – expect to be unfollowed if so.

The frequency of posting also needs to relate to how much content you have to share. If you endlessly re-post the same material it’s a game of diminishing returns, although you will find some evergreen content that always performs well.

Consider a global audience

Posting in the dead of night is not such a bad idea because as the world turns, potential influencers and customers are awake in other countries. As London winds down, New York and then California are waking up, and then Australia, China, and all the way back again.

Those interacting might not necessarily be buying the products you are selling, but they might have an important influence. This could in turn increase your number of posts to cover the night as well as day.

Facebook: once for brands, more for media

According to social data crunching firm SocialBakers, the optimal number of daily posts for brands on Facebook is just the once.

This is based on an average of the most engaged brands on Facebook. None post a great deal but the average is once.

socailbakers chart-brands

For media companies the answer is different. Media companies tend to post more often, which also reflects the quantity of content they produce.

Here the average is seven posts per day, but there is a wide range, from almost 16 for The Economist down to a little more than once for Fox News.

socialbakers chart-media

Again the ‘right’ answer is to look at your own experiences and tweak as appropriate, but this should serve as a good guide to get started on Facebook.

Twitter: around 5 or around 30 per day

A second round of SocialBakers research examined Twitter frequencies, and found that engagement really starts to decline after the third Tweet of the day, plateaus at five Tweets and then total engagement then starts to decline up to the 10th Tweet.

Their research looked at 11,000 Tweets from global brands over month. 

socialbakers twett-frequency

However, work by Track Social looked a little further, beyond 10 tweets and to more than 50 Tweets, and found that while the SocialBakers research was sound, if you Tweeted more and aimed for the maximum engagement possible, then you could continue to post up to 30 times per day to get the maximum possible return.

Track charts_Tweet102212skB2

While engagement does drop after around five tweets, engagement then builds again, and peaks at around 30 Tweets.

Of course the more you Tweet, the more effort and content needs to go into what you do. If you are able to stretch to 30 Tweets per day and have the content to back this up then this is probably the best way to go. Otherwise, stick to around five.

LinkedIn – once is enough

Business network LinkedIn produces its own marketing masterclass, and it concludes that once per day (20 posts per month on weekdays) is sufficient.

Now, with LinkedIn’s new publishing feature slowly rolling out across its network, this may change. Audience engagement could go up or down. The novelty of the feature has produced some staggering results in a short space of time.

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