Tweeting at any time of the day is like not viewing Twitter as a channel of communication in its own right. If you are reading this article, you probably have a Twitter account and chances are that your tweets will only be visible to a tiny fraction of your followers…
Maybe you’ve already posted tweets at multiple times of the day and noticed a huge difference in your impression rate. Some times more than half of your followers have seen your tweet, while other times less than 10% have seen it.
This means that if you tweet lightly without having carefully chosen the time of publication, you run the risk that 90% of your followers will not see your tweet. You therefore limit your potential to obtain commitments: retweets, clicks on the link… You under-exploit the potential offered by your number of followers if your objective is to redirect your followers to your website as much as a maximum of people are affected , is not it ?
Why is it so important to choose the right time to tweet?
Average lifetime of a tweet
Twitter is a topical social network, which means that a lot of information is shared continuously. Each piece of information, each tweet therefore quickly becomes drowned out among the most recent tweets. To be precise, the average lifespan of a tweet is 4 hours, which means that if you post a tweet at 8 a.m., it will be visible at best until 12 a.m.
In reality, this figure can vary widely and depends on the number of people your followers subscribe to and how often other people post. Know that you are in competition with all the followings of your subscribers, not just those who tweet on the same theme as you. It’s war to get attention.
Number of followings
I did not find an average number of following per Twitter account. But imagine that your followers are subscribed on average to 200 other accounts than yours. If you tweet, your 4 hour lifespan tweet will compete with a minimum of 200 tweets. Or maybe 400 tweets, if your competitors tweet 1 time every two hours. Do you see how drowned your tweet can be in your followers’ timeline?
The more followings your subscribers have, the less likely your tweet will be seen.
The higher the frequency of publication to which your followers are subscribed, the less likely your tweet will be seen.
Combine these two factors and your tweet has almost no chance of being seen unless you differentiate yourself, by posting quality content at the right time. The one where your followers are present, but not your competitors.
Summary: Number of followings x frequency of publication = degree of importance of the time of publication
Some studies have already been done on this, and ideal times have already been determined. The problem: these are ideal moments for all Twitter users, these are not the ideal publication moments for you, adapted to your activity, your followers and your publication frequency.
Analysis tools: best times to tweet
To choose the best time for your tweets, you need to have statistics to analyze. On the Internet, there are several tools for providing information on your Twitter account.
The first on the list is Followerwonk. It is free and allows you to analyze your Twitter account and that of your competitors as long as its number of followers does not exceed 25,000. If you have more followers, you will have to opt for the subscription at $ 29 / month. The subscription obviously includes other features that the free version does not allow.
By analyzing your profile, Followerwonk will determine several useful information about your followers, including their location and the times when they are most active. Also, it is connected to Buffer. So you can easily import into Buffer your best moments for tweeting from Followerwonk.
This is the type of report it offers:
With the location of followers:
The location of your followers explains why they are present at certain times and not at others. Here for example, the majority of my followers live in England. So I can use the time zone of Paris to tweet. Otherwise, if more Quebecers than French followed me, the good moments of publication would have been totally different.
Audiense is more complete than Followerwonk, also available for free. It lets you know when your followers are most online with information by day and by hour. This allows you to find out which day and what time your followers are most connected. A very useful feature, because you will be able to determine a different publication strategy between the week and the weekend, or even a publication strategy adapted to each day of the week.
Here is the graph obtained for my followers:
Audiense also offers graphics based on the times when your followers will be most exposed to your tweet. Moments that can be different from when your followers are massively on the platform, because like I said, everyone publishes when people are there. At certain times, the competition is sometimes very strong.
The proof in these two curves:
As with Followerwonk, you can export your best moments to tweet in Buffer.
Twitter Analytics allows analysis based on your tweets and not based on your followers. With Twitter Analytics, you won’t have the information you can get with Audiense and Followerwonk. But it is possible to determine the best moments based on the number of impressions and the engagement rate of tweets.
Example of information for one of my tweets:
Based on the engagement rate, you should still be careful to compare similar tweets, because timing isn’t the only factor when it comes to interacting. The content of the tweet has even more influence. The best thing is to tweet the same content multiple times, but at different times. The analysis will be all the more reliable.
3 steps to determine the best times to tweet
To determine the best times of the day to tweet, you have to go through a 3-step process:
- Tweet / test;
- Analyze ;
Do not think that you will immediately find your good moments to tweet. This will require consistency, analysis and experimentation. If you want to find the ideal moments for your tweets, you will have to repeat the process regularly. For example, once every two weeks or once a month. Putting this process in place once will not be enough to truly determine the times that are best for you.
The more you test, the more numbers you will get. You will have interesting figures, linked to events like Christmas, sales or even the two summer months. This will make you more and more efficient at scheduling your tweets at the right time, regardless of time, day, month and time of year.
Tweeter / Test
To analyze, it is necessary to collect information and for that, it is necessary to tweet regularly and at a sufficient frequency. Tweet regularly, what does that mean? Quite simply that every day without exception, you share several tweets with your followers.
Now if you post every day, but just a single tweet, you won’t have enough information to make good analyzes. I advise you to tweet between 8-10 times a day. If that’s too much for you, try to tweet at least 6 times a day. Tweet in the morning, in the afternoon, in the evening; the more tweets you have, the more reliable and representative the analysis.
Once you’ve tweeted regularly for a few weeks, you’re ready to go to analysis. Some tools like Followerwonk and Audiense generate information directly from your followers. The figures obtained are not linked to the frequency and times of your tweets. However, we will have to regularly analyze these graphs, because the flow of followers is constantly moving. Each day, new followers subscribe to your account and others unsubscribe. The characteristics of your followers are constantly evolving.
Now there are also Twitter statistics that allow you to see the impression and engagement rate for each of your tweets. With this data, you will be able to perform a finer analysis and readjust the moments at which you tweet to get more impression and engagement.
When the analysis is done, you now know when your followers are most connected and most active. All you have to do is reprogram your tweets based on the moments that should give you greater visibility and a better engagement rate.
Among the selected moments, you can do more in-depth tests, tweeting slightly before the ideal moment, neat at the right time and a few minutes after. Perhaps the ideal moment is actually a little earlier or a little later than what you had imagined. The secret is to tweet every moment of the day. After several phases of testing, analysis and readjustment, you will certainly have your best moments.
To determine the best times to tweet, you have to go through 3 stages: testing, analyzing and readjusting your publication schedule.
There are two possible analyzes: one based on your followers and the other based on your tweets. To have a good representation of the best moments for your tweets, the ideal combination is: Twitter Analytics and Audiense.
Now you have all the keys to determining your best moments for posts on Twitter. It’s your turn !