When we develop social media strategies, content calendars and social media plans for our clients, a majority of the discussion revolves around content. GFM is a huge proponent of putting customer needs and wants first when it comes to content creation – what will your customers find useful? Helpful? Humorous? Engaging? Start there, because more often than not your organizational goals and what your customer wants are not the same thing.
But what good is great content if no one is seeing it? Getting to know your audiences’ online behaviors and habits can be just as important as the content you’re providing. HubSpot provides research and statistics that can help. Nearly 80 percent of the U.S. population lives in Eastern or Central time zones. Tweets between noon and 6 p.m. Eastern, and Facebook posts around the noon hour offer the broadest opportunity for engagement. And overall, midweek and Saturday’s are the best days to post.
Bit.ly provides similar statistics: 1-3 p.m. Monday through Thursday for Twitter, and 1-4 p.m. midweek for Facebook are the best overall times to post. Social Media Today provides further encouragement to post in the afternoons, mostly midweek.
This is all great information from an “overall population” level, but what about your specific customers? GFM recently conducted some research via Sysomos for a client in the food industry that provided similar overall statistics, but when we dug a little deeper and focused on specific keywords, we found there were also relevant and significant conversations occurring late at night – presumably when people were in the mood for a late night snack – which is also a time when overall online chatter and “clutter” is at a minimum. That’s a pretty beneficial piece of information.
Understanding your customers’ wants and needs is the best first step in identifying what your social content should look like—and when you should plan to post. Combining that with a little bit of research regarding your customer’s online habits will help ensure your content is actually being seen by the right people, at the right time.
Jim Licko is a Senior Director of Social Media and Digital Strategy at GroundFloor Media and appreciates a social media content plan that finds the right mix of creative and research. Too much of one means you don’t have enough of the other.