More brands are realizing the power of social media when it comes to finding new customers. Social media has emerged as an alternative platform to search engines for brands to reach their audiences. Not to forget, a robust social media presence also supplements search engine performance.
Be that as it may, since many brands are new to the World of social media, there are a number of doubts and apprehensions surrounding the platform. One of the most common doubts pertains to the ideal frequency of posting on social media platforms. Several studies conducted on the subject, the results of which, we will be discussing in this article today.
However, before we jump into the ideal frequency of posting on various social platforms, it is important to understand that quality trumps quantity everywhere. That means, even if your posting frequency is ideal to success, it won’t do much to help you achieve business goals if your content is sub-par.
According to Google, there is no fixed ideal frequency for posting on a website. In a Tweet, a Google official stated that “a site isn’t a machine that pumps out content at a fixed rate” and the same is, to a large extent, true for your brand’s social media accounts. Sure, studies have shown that posting on certain frequencies translates into better social media results but it doesn’t mean that you should simply publish content for the sake of reaching that frequency. Social media success depends largely on the quality and engagement potential of your content. For this reason, it is important to understand certain “social media commandments” before we explore the ideal frequency of posting on various platforms.
- Post consistently not frequently: The issue with “an ideal frequency” is that it does not take the various industry verticals, geographical locations, and demographics of audiences into consideration. If, for instance, the ideal frequency to post is 3 posts a day, it might work for an e-commerce or news brand, but the audience of a B2B brand may find the same disruptive. Instead of aiming for ideal times, days, and frequency numbers aim for consistency. Let your audiences realize that after a fixed period of time, they can find something new in their favorite brand’s social media page.
- Don’t do it for the sake of doing it: Many social media platforms have modified their algorithms so that posts published by brands don’t show up on the news feed of all members of their audience. If you are not ready to pay for social ads to overcome this barrier, the other alternative is to publish content that is interesting and engaging. This way, if your audience truly finds your content resourceful or entertaining, they will consciously return to your page to check for updates. On the other hand, if you simply keep posting average-quality content to fill your social media calendar, your efforts will probably go unnoticed.
- Align posting frequency with your objectives: Unless you have your objectives laid out, you will not be able to measure the success of your efforts on social media. In fact, the right way to do things is to first come up with a set of objectives and then design a strategy and a calendar to fulfill those objectives. For instance, if your objective is brand recognition, it makes sense to post entertaining and intriguing content frequently. On the other hand, if your objective is to generate leads, building a lead magnet and aggressively promoting it is the way forward.
Keeping these commandments in mind, let us look at what various studies say about the ideal frequency of posting on social media platforms:
The most popular social network is not really friendly for promotions if you are not paying for them. The Facebook algorithms are designed such that you will not be able to reach 100% of the people that follow your page. Posts on Facebook usually only show up on the news feed of the users that regularly interact with your brand. The takeaway here is that a large percentage of people that come across your post on a specific day will be the same as the previous day so posting too frequently may come off as spammy at times. Studies support the same:
Ideal frequency: According to a HubSpot analysis, the ideal frequency for brands to post on Facebook is 5 times during a week. Since Facebook wants to serve their users with “fresh” content in their feed, it usually reduces the reach of a second Facebook post published by a brand in a single day. For this reason, on Facebook, try posting once every weekday or not more than five times during a week.
Ideal days and time for posting on Facebook: According to the same HubSpot research, there isn’t an ideal day to post on Facebook. However, it has been noticed that the highest engagement for the best performing Facebook posts is on Sunday. “Best performing” is the operating phrase here because any measurable trends in clicks and engagement can be only seen in the top performing posts (part of the 95th percentile). This essentially means the time and day of posting don’t matter as long as your content is truly valuable.
In terms of algorithms, Linkedin works similar to Facebook. While reaching the full potential of your audience is possible without paying for promotions, the rest of the equation is pretty much the same. Keep in mind, Linkedin is a professional social network and appearing spammy on this platform is quite easy.
Ideal frequency: As mentioned earlier, Linkedin algorithms work similar to the Facebook algorithms. Linkedin does not want to overwhelm their users with posts from a single brand so posting a second time on the same day may hamper the performance of your first post that day. Moreover, the HubSpot study also concluded that for a brand with 100 followers, the first two posts get two clicks each and this number then keeps diminishing. By the 10th post in a week, you will be getting an average of 0.5 clicks on your content. For this reason, a frequency of two to five posts will earn you the highest ROI. Yet again, the advice is if engagement is your objective, focus on quality and relevance of your content instead of posting frequency.
Ideal days and time for posting on Linkedin: Unlike Facebook, engagement patterns on Linkedin differ for different days. It was noticed that posts from a brand perform better on Tuesdays, Wednesdays, Thursdays, and Fridays. This makes sense because working professionals rarely get the chance to check their Linkedin feed on a busy Monday and let’s face it, nobody wants to spend their weekend going through their Linkedin feed.
Twitter has fast emerged as a great platform for brand visibility. Home to numerous social media success stories, Twitter marketing is quickly becoming part of several digital strategies, regardless of industry verticals. There are several advantages that Twitter offers to brands, the most lucrative of which, is great “reach” potential. That means, no matter how many times you post on Twitter, your post will show up on the news feed of all your followers.
Ideal Frequency: Since Twitter serves content as it is posted, it is advisable to post as much as you can for best engagement. This, however, should not be taken as an excuse to spam your audiences with useless content for the sake of visibility. Let go of the “all publicity is good publicity” myth and invest real thought behind the purpose of each post that goes under your brand name.
Ideal days and time for posting on Twitter: The average amount of engagement driven by posts does not differ substantially on different days for Twitter. The trick to success is to treat your Twitter posts as “messages” instead of polished posts. Use the platform to drive conversations with quality content instead of promoting your brand.
The conclusion to everything stated above is simple, the frequency or publishing time of your posts does not matter if your content falls in the “average” category. Similarly, if you are publishing great content that is useful to your audience, it will drive engagement, regardless of the time, date, or frequency of publishing.