Social media platforms such as Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram were created to be enjoyable and convenient ways to connect users to their friends and family. But, with advancements in technology, constantly changing market trends, and the big shift from in-person interactions to online connections, social networking platforms eventually found themselves heavily utilized for business and marketing.
These days, social media is used by both small businesses and big corporations as a major means of reaching and engaging with clients all across the globe in real-time.
For small-scale entrepreneurs and those who are looking to start their businesses, social media is an incredibly handy tool for establishing connections with potential customers.
One thing most businesses fail to realize, though, is that while posting good content is key, the timing of your posts plays a very important part in casting a wider net.
Read to learn more about social media platforms and the best times to share content.
The Top Social Media Platforms for Businesses
Many social media platforms are utilizing many different forms of media available to consumers right now but, for businesses, the most important ones are:
Facebook is the most popular social media platform in the world. As it has the most active users of every demographic, this is the one platform business owners can’t be without.
Its interface allows businesses to create and share content in a wide range of media formats, including text, photos, videos, and stories. It also allows users to schedule posts for future publishing, which is perfect when doing bulk content creation.
Facebook’s design also allows customers to easily engage with businesses through comment threads and post reactions. On top of that, Facebook allows people to easily share content to their timelines or through private messaging for instant word-of-mouth marketing.
Many celebrities, politicians, and other people of note utilize Twitter for sharing announcements, opinions, and recommendations. Because of this, Twitter has a user base of all genders belonging to a wide range of ages, social classes, and beliefs.
Twitter allows its users to publish (or ‘tweet’) images, videos, and short text posts with a 280-character limit in real-time. As Twitter’s design puts a heavy emphasis on conciseness, this requires users to create straight-to-the-point and witty content to attract the eye of other users.
Business owners can take advantage of Twitter’s interface that allows for the easy sharing (or retweeting) and quoting of user posts. Besides sharing, users can also like posts. These liked posts are archived in the user’s profile, which can serve as a bookmark for future reference.
Another feature that makes Twitter ideal for businesses is the ease of communicating with other users. Many corporations use this platform to engage with users, as well as for customer support purposes.
One of the most downloaded apps in the United States, Instagram focuses more on the photo and video content and less on text.
Setting an Instagram account properly is just as important as knowing when to post. Businesses need to take advantage of linking their website and writing a good bio for their accounts as these are some of the first things a user sees when visiting an Instagram profile.
As a platform that prioritizes visuals, the key to making a good Instagram account is posting very aesthetically appealing photos and videos. It is important to make your Instagram grid appear cohesive, so crafting a strong visual identity for your brand is a must.
Instagram also recently added an update that enables businesses to directly sell and transact with consumers by hosting their online shops within the platform.
To be able to reach many people when starting on the platform, utilize popular hashtags to make your brand visible.
The Best Time to Post On Social Media For Optimal Engagement
Besides creating good content, it is also important to study the demographic you are trying to reach to identify the best time to post. Important factors to consider, besides age and gender, include habits and interests.
If you already have an existing social media account, you can also look into your top posts to determine your peak time for posting. You can sort through your analytics by certain metrics, such as engagement and number of likes and shares.
Keep in mind that each platform has its algorithm that may affect your post’s visibility. For Instagram and Facebook, it was found that their algorithms prioritize “recency” for ranking, so it only makes sense to post when your target market is online. These algorithms are revised occasionally, though, so business owners must adjust to that, too.
If you would prefer to leave the social media optimization and analytics to someone else, you can reach out to a social media management company in Philadelphia for help.
Around 73% of Facebook’s nearly 3 billion users were found to log onto the platform every day, with 57% of users from the United States primarily using it for sharing content.
Through user data, Wednesday around 11:00 AM CST was discovered to be the peak time for general engagement, although 10:00 AM to 11:00 AM on all other weekdays are not far behind.
As for marketing your products, Facebook users are most receptive to posts about consumer goods on Wednesdays and Fridays, from 10:00 AM to 5:00 PM, with a distinct drop in interest before 8:00 AM. Meanwhile, media consumption sees a spike at 5:00 PM mid-week.
In general, individual consumers tend to check Facebook most right before work hours, during lunch break, and during downtime after work. Sundays typically see the least amount of active users.
Unlike Facebook and Instagram algorithms, Twitter’s algorithm ranks tweets by potential user interest instead of in chronological order. With over 500 million tweets per day, businesses need to know when to post so as not to be buried under other tweets.
Twitter sees a jump in activity around 8:00 AM every day — weekends included — as users tend to use the platform as a news source, checking for updates right before starting their day.
As mentioned earlier, many corporations turn to Twitter for addressing customer support issues. Unlike Facebook, Twitter’s best day for business engagement is on Sundays from 8:00 AM to 5:00 PM. General engagement, though, still does best on weekdays from 8:00 AM to 4:00 PM.
While Instagram does somehow show posts based on recency, it is also notorious for being unpredictable and does not present content in chronological order. The best workaround is to know what your target demographic’s peak hours are.
Like Facebook, Wednesday around 11:00 AM tends to be the best for user engagement. General engagement also peaks on Fridays from 10:00 AM to 11:00 AM but is consistently good on all weekdays from 9:00 AM to 4:00 PM.
For marketing goods of any kind, Wednesday at 3:00 PM has seen the most movement, followed by Tuesdays to Fridays from 11:00 AM to 3:00 PM.
Moreover, Facebook acquired Instagram and has now established a cross-posting feature between the two platforms, which business owners should take advantage of.
For businesses venturing into the world of social media marketing, it is important to partner in creating good content with an effective posting schedule.
Different platforms see different activity trends from their users, and it is imperative to take note of your preferred platform’s peak hours, as well as studying your target audience’s online habits, to make the most of your social media experience.