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Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Web Tools Wednesday: Best Times To Post to Social Media

Recently I read a few articles that I felt were worth sharing with those of you who are utilizing social media to reach your clients. They both discuss the best times to make posts on various social media platforms. To reach an optimum number of readers, certain times of day work better than others. The URL shortening site bitly is in a unique position to observe what times of day generate the most clicks on links that are being shared on Twitter, Facebook, and Tumblr. From their article:

Did you see those silly cats on Tumblr, that breaking news on Twitter, and those photos of your friend’s kids on Facebook? Different social networks have their own distinct personalities. Bitly links are shared across all social networking services, giving us a unique viewpoint on how these networks differ.

We track metrics like the main type of content being shared on a network, the geographic locations of the people sharing and viewing the content, and how the popularity of the network has risen and fallen compared to other networks.

Creative Commons license on image.

While bitly has access to some powerful analytic tools, this article suggests that there are a lot of variables that can effect the effectiveness of your posts or tweets. From the article:
This commonly stumps many business owners. Have you ever heard someone claim, "9am is the best time to post on social media"? Hopefully they'll follow up with, "but it depends on your business and your industry." If they don't, you'd better raise an eyebrow in suspicion. My question is, 9am is the best time in whose time zone? The truthful answer is, the best time to post depends on many factors unique to your business such as industry, your particular set of followers, time zone, and whether or not your content is engagement-worthy.
Who is right? Well, there is no dispute that bitly can determine what has worked well in the past. However, nothing stays the same on the internet for very long and the second article makes some persuasive points that indicate your mileage may vary from the recommendations made by bitly. No matter which side is correct, they consensus is that if you want your posts to reach the greatest number of followers and have the most impact, then you want to post when your readers are likely to be online and see what you have put out there for them. As a bonus tool to refer to, here is a "clock" showing trends throughout the day as provided by the bitly research.

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