How to maximize the reach of your social media posts

One of the most pressing questions whether you’re a social media newbie or a social media maven is: What’s the best way to post information or share content to optimize your reach?

Compendium, a content marketing firm, may have some insights to help answer this perplexing question.

The firm conducted a study with more than 200 companies to determine how social media professionals may optimize their engagement with both business-to-business and business-to-consumer conversations.

Researchers evaluated numerous factors such as the number of words in a post, the time of the posting, the day of the week as well as punctuation and the usage of hashtags.

As with many communications and marketing tactics, the answer depends entirely on the targeted audience.

The key finding:  Mondays and Wednesdays are the best days to post on Twitter if you want to reach consumers. For LinkedIn, Monday is your best day.

But if you want to reach other businesses, Tweet on Wednesday and post to LinkedIn on Sunday.

And what about the use of hashtags? Hashtags are best saved for business-to-business-oriented posts but don’t work nearly as well if consumers are your target.

The biggest surprise for me was that the use of questions marks significantly minimizes your click-through rates between 25 and 52 percent as compared to posts without question marks.

This program maps the times and days of my 21,000 tweets.

My experience in sharing more than 21,000 tweets and Facebook posts to my more than 150,000 Twitter followers and Facebook friends is consistent with the study’s findings.

I recommend the hours between 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. (Pacific Time) or 1 to 4 p.m. (Eastern Time) are the best times for Twitter and Facebook to optimize social engagement engagement.

I find that tweets shared earlier in the week do better than those sent later in the week. I also have discovered that Facebook posts do best Wednesday early afternoon.

But if you look at my social shares, you will see they run around the clock. I try my best to engage with people in my network in real time or near real time.

Check out this infographic for details on how to maximize your social sharing efforts.

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  • johnlusher

    This is a fabulous post, Ted! When to post and what to post on social media is the question that everyone asks. And while the findings of their survey doesn’t answer every single question, it does provide a road map for individuals and businesses to use. As mentioned, it varies depending on your audience, but this is helpful as a starting point or a way to refine what you are currently doing.

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  • ipadadventurer

    Great Post Ted and really interesting too thank you for sharing

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  • http://www.facebook.com/rolf.lindstrom Rolf Lindström

    Great insights, thanks for sharing!

  • Sean Lynch

    Companies should also be looking at software tools to help engage their people(employees, volunteers, supporters,etc), to post to their networks. Companies can reach a totally new audience. Employees will only share if they want to and if the content is relevant, but chances are that they spend nearly 25% of their personal offline conversations talking about either the company they work for or the industry they are in.
    PostBeyond is a great tool that is really helping a lot of companies amplify their SM reach and engage their employees.

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  • http://twitter.com/GingerKadlec Ginger Kadlec

    Terrific information and data. Thank you for sharing, Ted!

  • Donna Beckett

    Interesting post – thanks for sharing. Fairly amazed at the reduced click through rate for posts which include a question mark!