When is the best time to post on social media?
You’ve written some killer content and lined up a bank of perfect social media posts to promote it - but before you hit the ‘Post’ button, just wait a second.
To give your content the best chance to perform, you can’t just post willy-nilly. You need to choose the right time.
And when it comes to social media, ‘the right time’ depends on a lot of factors.
The right time to post on social media
Think about it: your following on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn or wherever else is probably spread around the world, right? Some of your audience will be sound asleep while others are just cracking a beer with colleagues after work.
They’ll be using different devices, too: some scanning social media on their work PC, others flicking through their feeds on the bus.
The right time is the time that allows as much of your audience as possible to see your social media content.
How to schedule social media content
Now you’re probably thinking, “I don’t want to be manning the social channels at all hours of the day!”
And that’s OK, you don’t have to. There are tools to do it for you: just upload your post content, schedule it in, and it’ll tick over in the background, sending out content at the specified times.
The right tools make everything easier
The best times to post on different platforms
The real best time to post depends on so many factors that it’s hard to pin down perfectly, but over the years a certain amount of received wisdom has built up.
As a rule of thumb, posting at the following times to the following platforms will yield better than average returns.
We’ve included opinions of social media heavy-hitters here, so you know the advice is sound.
The best time to post to Instagram
HubSpot reckons that Thursday and Friday between 1-3 pm is the best time to post. The weekend is coming, people’s attention may be drifting, and they’re ready to engage with content.
Other sources say 8 pm on Thursday is best: a little later in the day, but the same logic applies.
The best time to post to Facebook
HootSuite says that Tuesday and Thursday between 8 am and noon is the best time to post on Facebook.
A sneaky Thursday morning peek
But, in truly contrary fashion, the best advice for Facebook currently seems to be avoiding any recommendations of best times…
And here’s why:
Facebook makes up a part of almost every brand’s content strategy, and social media managers are always looking for advice on the best times to post.
This means that if an industry heavyweight makes a recommendation, thousands of brand accounts are going to schedule their posts for that time slot, creating a tidal wave of content that users can never hope to fully engage with.
With this in mind, the advice is to post as and when content is created, and gauge what the responses are like for your brand at different times of the day.
The best time to post to LinkedIn
HootSuite’s study found Tuesday and Wednesday morning around 9 am was the best time to post: people are arriving in the office and starting their day with a little browse of their network. It’s early enough in the week that their attention hasn’t drifted to other, funner platforms yet.
SproutSocial had similar findings but with a slightly larger time period. Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday mornings, all between 9 and noon, were their best times to post.
Finding the right time for you
As with most things in life, these guidelines are useful up to a certain point. Like we said in the Facebook section when people start noticing and promoting that a time slot has good engagement, more and more people will schedule their posts for it. Over time this means the time slot gets crowded and content published then is less likely to be seen.
We always recommend creating social media content tailored to your brand and the needs of your customers. In the same vein, we recommend posting it at a time that makes sense for you, not at the latest time an influencer has identified.