How often should I post of social media sites?
This is a really important question because we all want to reach and engage our audience and do all those great things that comes with an effective social media strategy, but we don’t want to be seen as a cyber stalker, Internet spammer, and get a Facebook restraining order placed on us. So we want to walk the line and strike a balance between too much and not enough.
So the answer is – well, you know I was going to say this – it’s understand your audience first. If you’re selling carbonite metal fasteners to the industrial space, maybe once a month is too much. At least it is for me. But if you have a trendy or tongue in cheek, kind of, news site or something that’s really much more timely, like day trading, then you might want to send out updates more often.
It’s all about your audience’s tolerance. But there are some general guidelines and some principles that will help you figure this out for your business. I want you to understand a couple of quick concepts.
Number one, social media is a flowing river of information. It’s not about seeing somebody in person or even a highly qualified email where you know they’re going to read or absorb your content. When you publish on social media, there’s a river of information going by. So on Twitter nobody looks at what happened last week, yesterday, or even an hour ago. So when you publish something on Twitter, only .X percent of your audience is actually going to see that and be able to share or even be exposed to that content. So on Twitter you can publish every hour. Some big brands publish every 20 or 30 minutes. If you publish junk, once a month is too much. If you publish high quality content that you’re sharing, that you find from others and share or that you’re syndicating from your own blog or website, quality rules. But on Twitter you can do it much more often. This is a huge discovery for me, and I wish I would have found that out more quickly.
Facebook, Google+ are kind of similar in terms of the nature, the topography of those cultures and the communities on there. Facebook really contributes to attention deficit disorder in a big way, so you can get away with publishing once an hour, maybe four or five times a day. I wouldn’t publish less than once a day on that because if you’re not contributing enough content to your site to do so, then share others’ content. As long as it’s relevant to your audience, your audience will let you know by their shares, by their engagement, by their clicks to your website, referral traffic. So if you’re sharing content on social media sites and it results in traffic, you’re doing the right thing. If not, back off a little bit.
But understand the rule of percentages. Only a small percentage of any member of your audience is going to see your content when you publish it. This really reminds me of what I call the HubSpot marketing model. I used to sit in disbelief and say, “Why does HubSpot publish?” Get the new eBook on how to set up your Facebook account for business. Why would they publish that every single day or twice a week and still get 500 or 600 likes and follows every time they would do it? It’s because not everybody is a marketing geek like me, where they’re watching this stuff, and they have nothing better to do than to engage in online marketing and social media. Members of your target audience aren’t sensitized to all those nuances of marketing like a marketing person might be. So I really learned something when HubSpot did that. I was like, “Wait a minute. If they’re publishing the same thing over and over and still getting traction, what a waste it is for us to write a good blog post, only publish it once and then walk away from it forever.
So the huge epiphany here is look at your Google Analytics. Look at the most popular content, the content that people hang on with longer time on site, that people are sharing on your website, the content that’s getting the most traffic on your website, and share that puppy every couple weeks. So use a tool like HootSuite for sure. HootSuite allows you to schedule. So if you look at your Google Analytics and you see that a blog post you wrote a month ago always gets a high level of engagement, then go to HootSuite and schedule that puppy to go out every third Thursday of every month or twice a month until you no longer get engagement, until you see drop-off.
So when you look at your content publishing strategy and you’re figuring out how often you should post information on Facebook and other sites, don’t think you have to constantly be producing new information. Derek Halpern on Social Triggers said that he built a really successful blog on an average of 2.4 updates a month because it was quality content to a defined audience that was interested. So it’s not about frequency, it’s about engagement.
So remember that. But as a rule of thumb, before we let you go here, on Twitter you can publish every hour or more. For sites like Facebook, Google+, you should be publishing three or four things a day. If you’re not contributing content, look for others that are putting good content on the web and share that. That will get you there. Look at your metrics. Let the numbers be thy judge, and you will not fail. Go get social. If you have other online marketing questions, go to GeekFree.net/answers, and I’ll see you there. Cheers, I think.
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