While content is the most important factor on people selecting to leave a comment or re-share your posts, the time of the day you post also plays an important role. The factors to consider when posting are:
– Time of the day when your target interest group is most active – The post “Time to live”. How the amount of comments and re-shares is distributed across the post life – Day of the week. People are more active over the weekends on social sites. – How many posts you make per day.
There is an interesting info-graph on the science of social timing here.
While this information applies to Twitter and Facebook, the main trends do apply to Google+. They tell us that: – Wednesday and the weekend are the most active time periods for social media – The time to live from a post peaks right after the post goes live and drops down quickly afterwards. – Spamming and not posting are equally wrong strategies. In Facebook your followers will give you more likes if you post something every 2 days. Masters of the social media like Guy Kawasaki and Robert Scoble post multiple times a day, thus it does not feel as if they were spamming your stream.
Now that we know some of the basic parameters, we can turn to the question on how to get the best time of the day for your interest group. The transparency report tool from Google gives you an overview of internet traffic on your country. For example, for Switzerland:
Note that you can search for different countries and across many Google domains. Unfortunately they don’t yet have stats for plus.google.com yet. Using the traffic for all Google sites should suffice for our purposes. Also note that different countries have different “footprints”. This is the graph for the US:
You can see the difference in surfing activities among citizens of these 2 countries. In Switzerland it peaks in the morning and after lunch. There is a “low traffic zone” in the afternoon and a peak in the evening. In the US this is more normalized: maybe because of the amount of time zones in the country. But it is still clear that the highest traffic is in the evening.
From the Kissmetrics blog we know that social activity is higher in the evening. This makes sense since many people don’t check social media while they are at work. From the country graph for Switzerland we see that the largest evening usage is between 7PM and 9 PM. The best time to get attention from Swiss people is to post at 7 PM (GMT+2)
In the US the best time would be between 6PM and 10 PM Eastern. We have also learned from Kissmetrics that most of the population of the US is in Eastern time (48%). This fact is reflected in the curve start-up time.
There is one remaining point to be discussed: Hangouts. If you want to organize a truly international hangout the best time is 10 AM Eastern time. You get the Europeans around 4 PM, the folks in Asia late at night, and the west coast folks are used to being up early to take the pulse of the world.
Do you have any recommendations on how to increase the visibility of your posts that you want to share with us?
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