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What’s the Best Time to Tweet?
According to The Balance Small Business,
The highest average click-through rates (CTR) occurs between Mondays and Thursdays, 1 pm and 3 pm, with no specific peak times. This would be the ideal time to post if your goal is to get people to click-through to your website or landing page.
The worst time for posting appears to be weekend evenings (after 8 pm), and Fridays after 3 pm. These times coincide with the lowest amount of engagement, clicks, re-tweets, etc.
I struggle with this.
I’m one of those that can’t write if not inspired. My productivity varies but my desire to have all my tweets reach the whole world, or at least my followers, doesn’t. I want it all, and it never really happens. You see, I travel a lot. I jump between time zones which affect both my sleeping and writing times. But timing a tweet to reach its maximum visibility isn’t that hard to do.
If you are inspired at 2 AM, go ahead and write but don’t hit the send button quite yet. There’s nothing sadder than dropping nuggets of wisdom, humor or concern into a bottomless pit void of eyeballs. So, what’s the ideal time?
Though this topic has been covered from every possible angle, it is still hard to do well because there isn’t a one-size-fits-all magic universal time where all us Twitter users are online and desperately waiting for your post.
Every Twitter Community Is Unique and so Is Yours
The only way around this conundrum is to roll up your sleeves and get to know your followers. This is where analytics come in handy. Thankfully, there’s a lot of them collecting information about our communities all the time. You can get away with the free ones but if you want to dig deeper it could cost you.
The best place to start is to peruse the profiles of your Twitter followers. These are the people that decided to follow you, these are your friends. Some choose to put something in that field and others don’t. But, for those that do share, it is telling as that is what how they label themselves in the eyes of the world. I put a few words about who I am and my professional experience and have left it alone since. Others will use it as a bulletin board or a way to post links and update it constantly.
Another thing to look at is the location, home page link and join date. Most are elective free-form field so you’re going to have to contend with all sorts of spelling variances, cleverness, and blanks.
I grabbed some of the locations of my followers and here’s what I found:
San Francisco CA
New York NY
New York USA
New Delhi India
Accounting for the different spelling nuances, I can see that I have users in the US, Europe, and India. But there is a much more precise and free place to access this information.
Twitter Analytics not only offers precise location statistics but a whole lot more. Click ‘audiences’ then ‘demographics’.
You’ll see a great country list. Just like the hand-curated list, I can see that my top followers are from the US, followed by the UK and India.
With that information in hand, I can jump to another great tool, 24timezones.com. This page allows you to easily compare different time zone by creating time ladders. You give it two cities and it will tell you how they overlap.
So, a good time to post whenever I am in New York to also cover India and Europe would be in the morning. This will make sure my morning Tweet also gets some active eyeballs in the afternoon for London and early evening for India.
As usual, the best part of having an international community is that we can safely retweet at various times. Twitter is like a river, post in the AM, and give it a few hours to flow then post again. Odds are, nobody will catch the repeats. If its an important or clever tweet, I’ll retweet it at least two more times that day.
When Does Your Community Consume Your Tweets
Twitter Analytics provides engagement numbers for each post. It doesn’t give you a time of the post, but if you click ‘Tweets’ in the top menu, it does display them in chronological order so you can get a feel for which worked the best.
So if you keep track of when you posted something, you should be able to see what times and topics worked for your community.
This tool can do a lot more than just location and engagement, it has background information on your followers like income, education, digital media used, etc. So, definitely, spend some time there if you want to better know your followers.
Running Custom Own Experiments
If you have control over your website or you know how to create a landing page or survey (using a service like GetResponse.com or surveymonkey.com), you can build your own metrics. Google Analytics is a free service and can be added to most web pages and WordPress sites. Create a page that is only accessible via a link posted in your Tweet. Add the Google Analytics tracker to that page and let it rip.
I created a ‘Deal of the Day’ landing page and ran a test on Twitter. I offered one of my Udemy classes for free for anybody willing to sign up for my newsletter.
Wow, the possibilities are endless and if anybody gives you excuses that they have no idea who their followers are, give them this post.
Thanks for reading!
If you are looking for branding help or want to apply similar techniques at scale, don’t hesitate to contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org
Manuel Amunategui, Curator ViralML.com, Founder KeepTheTalk.com. Author of “Grow Your Web Brand, Visibility & Traffic Organically: 5 Years of amunategui.github.Io and the Lessons I Learned from Growing My Online Community from the Ground Up”