Today I’m going to talk about a topic that I really feel passionate about! The topic is frequency! Questions come to me ALL the time from small business owners regarding frequency. The question has many forms, such as “is it really necessary to post every day?” “What times should we post to social media?”
So, let’s jump into these frequency questions and more!
There are 3 areas of focus for frequency.
Key times of day.
Times per week.
If you ever hear that there is a “best time” for all industries do not believe it. While there are times that most people are more active on Facebook, strategy behind the frequency should be directly related to your industry.
For example, the key time may vary for a restaurant (since their rush is often on the weekend) compared to an office supply company, who capitalises lunch times in the working week.
Let’s jump in!
KEY TIMES OF DAY.
There are several ways to find the key times to post, and these methods can even be used in conjunction with one another for more advanced strategy. I will share them with you to save you time!
Before jumping in to this, you may discover that the times of day when your fan base are the most active are the same times that you are the busiest! A really good tool if you want to schedule your social media postings is to use a social media scheduling tool such as Hootsuite or Postplanner. Just be careful, because with scheduling you need to make sure that it looks immediate and engages with your followers. But we can talk more about that later..
Google Analytics – Oh, how I love Google Analytics! One of the many benefits of using this FREE (yes, 100% free!) tool will reveal the times of day that your fans are the most active. You can also compare past postings to Google Analytics to see which posts converted to the website with the highest quality of traffic.
Research – A two-fold research approach is essential to finding out when the best times are to post. One is to study the hashtag trends related to your industry. If your target market is teenagers, try looking at trending hashtags like #tbt (or #mcm at your own risk….). You can see the posts in chronological order, and easily determine when your target market is most active. I’ve used hashtags like #twittersisters and #smallbizsaturday to learn more about when my fan base is active.
The second part of this research process involves checking out your competition. Chances are, they are probably on social media. When are they posting? When are they getting engagement? It’s a fun way to see with a bird’s-eye view what IS and ISN’T working for them.
Trial and Error – This one is a little more nerve-wracking, especially if you are spending money on Facebook ad campaigns. I recommend seeing what time of day you’re getting the most interaction, and then boosting your ads based on the organic results. If you have a Facebook business account then the audience insight tools are invaluable for finding out about your customers and also your target customers.
TIMES PER WEEK
Think of your friend or family member that always shares the perfect amount of information. After a conversation with this person, you want to learn more! You leave the interaction feeling like you were intrigued by the happenings in their life, but not overloaded. The sweet spot for the number of times per week lies in a small space somewhere between “mysterious” and “overshare”. Yes, I know that’s vague… You just want a number!
As a general rule, I recommend posting 4-6 times per week.It doesn’t have to be M-F, it might look like Tuesday, Wednesday, Friday, and Saturday.Find a rhythm that works for you, and please, don’t feel the need to post every single day. You should never post multiple times per day unless your niche is in Internet Marketing or other similar fields, as your customers will get fed up and end up finding you really annoying.
Many small businesses struggle to create the content (a topic which I will be covering in the near future!) for even 1 post a week. It’s time to start getting creative, and make sure that your customers are seeing you actively for the majority of the week!
DO, DO, DO post on and around the holidays! This is like a free pass, because the ability to engage your fans is going to be completely magnified! For most people the holidays can be bittersweet… Post and be surprised by the reach your posts get on the (sometimes) most wonderful days of the year.
Oh, and find silly/fun holidays to celebrate as well! Does your company celebrate National Donut Day? Snap a pic and share, celebrating the day. Your fans will love to see your company’s fun side coming to life.
Above all else, make it happen! It may seem scary, but as you see your audience engage, it can be extremely rewarding.