You’ve worked long and hard on your social media content calendar. Your posts are relevant and engaging, your hashtags are up-to-date, and your images are on-brand and look great. So why does it seem like most of your followers aren’t finding your content?
For brands looking to maximize their social media marketing strategy for meaningful business growth, the best post in the world can only be as effective as the number of people who come across it. That’s why it’s critical to try to post at times when your audience is most likely to be online and ready to engage with your content.
But with so many other details involved in creating social media content (not to mention growing a brand!), any solution that optimizes your content while also saving you time is a good thing.
Luckily, artificial intelligence can take a lot of stress out of this process by analyzing historical data to figure out the best time for you to post on social media!
For example, as a Sprout Social Agency Partner, at S2, we love Sprout’s Optimal Send Times feature. Powered by data and driven by AI, this tool can quickly and easily identify the best times to reach your followers each day. To learn more about how this tool can supercharge your marketing efforts, keep reading.
Best Times to Post to Social Media? Let AI Figure It Out For You!
Why Is Posting During Peak Hours So Important?
Imagine you are renting a digital billboard in Times Square. At $5,000 per day, this is not a cheap place to advertise. But let’s say you got lucky, and you are able to rent a Times Square billboard for just five minutes — any five minutes out of the day that you want.
What time would you choose? Would you rent five minutes at 2:00 AM, when very few people will likely see your billboard? Or would you choose the early evening, when the area is packed full of pre-theatre crowds?
Posting to social media doesn’t cost $5,000 a day, of course, but it is nevertheless vital to think along the same lines (and boosting great content is a good strategy too!). When is your audience most likely to be scrolling through their feeds? For example, if your followers are mainly professionals who work in offices, you may want to try posting on a weekday morning or if they’re parents, early before kids rise or late after they go to bed.
Different audiences may be most active at different times. Platforms are always evolving and so are social media users. There is simply no one universal answer to when is the best time, and that’s why we love Optimal Send Times because it’s customized to your audience.
Your brand is unique, as is your audience. Simply posting at the same time every weekday morning isn’t the worst strategy in the world, but it’s also not the best. Taking this approach means leaving opportunities on the table. For example, what if your audience is most active at a time when your competitors are not posting?
To discover the optimal time to post for your specific business, you need to dig deeper. That’s where Sprout comes in.
Sprout Social: A Better Way to Schedule
Sprout Social’s Optimal Send Times tool, built on their very own patented ViralPost® algorithm, takes the guesswork out of social media scheduling.
The algorithm digs into your analytic data and publishing history, intelligently analyzes your audience’s engagement patterns, and surfaces the best times to post for each account and platform on each specific day. Up to seven options for posting times are calculated and presented alongside ratings of one to five stars to indicate which time is the best of the best.
By using data to detect the most active times, this tool helps deliver more authentic engagement with your content. In fact, according to Sprout, the average user has seen a 60% increase in engagement, with some users even seeing a jaw-dropping 300% improvement.
The Optimal Send Times feature is also straightforward and easy to use through the Sprout Social Compose tool. Simply choose your platform, compose your post, select a date to schedule your post, and click the Use Optimal Send Times dropdown to review Sprout’s recommendations instantly.
Although you can schedule for multiple platforms simultaneously, choose to Duplicate your post and schedule for each platform individually. This way Optimal Send Times will calculate new recommendations for each profile on all of your networks (and in general it’s a good rule of thumb to optimize each post in the culture of the platform it’s being posted to).
Behind the scenes, the ViralPost® algorithm combs your profile’s historical engagement data, examining metrics such as your audience’s comments, likes, and messages to draw valuable insights and conclusions. If your profile is new and does not yet have enough historical data, Sprout will default to global engagement trends. Meanwhile, the algorithm continually updates and refines, learning more and more about your audience to apply in the future.
With our premium access as a Sprout Social Agency Partner, Sociality Squared uses this powerful scheduling tool to help our clients grow their businesses through authentic engagement and clear results.