Timing is Everything

I was always one to assume that early morning was the optimal time to publish blog posts and update all of the different channels of social media, in order to receive the most views, links, comments, likes, and increase your chances of your content being shared.  But, according to research by Dan Zarrella, social, search, and viral marketing scientist and author of The Social Media Marketing Book, I realized I’m only partially correct. I recently joined a webinar where Dan presented practical tips for blogging success, which I’ve highlighted below.

(Note: Dan’s aggregated data was pulled from near 200k blog posts, about a hundred million tweets and retweets, and Facebook data from tens of thousands.)

Blogs Posts: Views, Links, Comments

Naturally, Dan’s research found that approximately 80% of people surveyed read blogs in the morning. So, by choosing to publish your post earlier in the day/morning, you have the chance to optimize views, links, and comments. However, if you want to get down to the nitty gritty, you must also take the days of the week into consideration. If you’re looking to increase numbers of views and links, it is best to publish the blog early in the week (Mon.-Wed.); this makes sense because bloggers are always looking for content to link back to in their own articles throughout the week. If comments are what you’re after, publishing on the weekend is your best bet, according to Dan’s research.

Optimal Time to Share Blog Posts

The optimal time/day to publish a blog post differentiates from the ideal time to share through Facebook and Twitter. After taking a deeper look, Dan found that Twitter and Facebook activity do not sync up, and therefore shouldn’t share the same distribution timeline. Research pegs 4:00PM as the most “retweetable” time of day, whereas Facebook Sharing is more apt to peak in early morning and later in the evening. It is now understood that blog posts should be published in the morning, and then shared through social media later in the day. Dan stepped back from the hours within a day view, and noticed another pattern in sharing on days within a week. Retweeting sees a major spike on Thursday and Friday, whereas Facebook Sharing hits its highest marks on the weekend.

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