You’re launching an event and you want all your Twitter followers to see your tweet about the event.
What time do you send it?
If you’re trying to figure out the best time to tweet there are many considerations.
1. Do You Have a Global Audience?
If you have a global audience there is no one specific time to send your Tweet because your audience will be on Twitter at different times. You may use one of the tools we outline here to find out when most of your audience is online but this will show you your main market.
At other times throughout the day less of your audience may be online but this could still be an important audience to reach.
You’re running an event open to everyone online so why would you tweet about it in US time only when your Australian friends are in bed?
Action: As well as doing an analysis of when your main audience is online use a tool such as Twtrland which will do a profile analysis so you can see where all your followers are around the world.
2. What Time of Day is Your Audience Online
It’s important to do an analysis to find out when your main audience is online. We did an analysis of a Twitter account recently with 30k followers and on average 1,300 people seen their tweets.
So doing an analysis when your audience is online is useful.
In the following example (using Socialbro) the dip shows between 3am and 8am most of my audience is not online. This makes perfect sense as my main audience is in the US. But Australia is a growing audience for me also so sending a message at 5am means this is around 12pm in Australia (depending on what part of Australia) which is right in the middle of the working day.
So really you are not working out the best time to tweet based on when most of your audience is online unless you don’t have a global audience and you operate in one time zone. If you have a global audience the best times to tweet are around the times when your main audience is online.
But you also need to test out these times. For example, is my chart above you would think that around 5 o’clock is the best time to tweet but this could be the most competitive time as it’s the busiest time. You might find that 1 or 2 o’clock may have less of your fans online but it could be a time where less people are vying for their attention.
If there is one particular time zone that has your primary audience then you should consider tweeting more during those times.
3. What’s Your Potential Exposure by Day of the Week
It’s also useful to work out how many of your followers followers are online any day of the week. Socialbro adds up your followers followers and then works out when most of this audience are online each day of the week.
For my account there is an expected dip of the amount of my followers followers online at the week-ends, however, it is not really a significant drop. Less of my competitors will tweet regularly at the week-end so it’s still worth testing it out.
4. What are Your Results from Sharing
One of the most ways of figuring out the best times to tweet is to test different times to see what works best for you and analyze the content you shared during those times. But you need to test this over a period because you may find a tweet at a certain time does a lot better than a tweet at another time but one has an image or a more interesting tweet!
One of the best ways of figuring out the best times to tweet is using a tool such as Buffer or Hootlet which allow you to queue up your tweets and send them out at specific times. If you tweet regularly at specific times you can then start adjusting your times to see if you get improved performance.
Using a combination of Socialbro and Bufferapp is perfect. Socialbro will try to figure out the best times to tweet and then you can export these times directly into Buffer and then you can test out. Bufferapp will show you analytics on any tweets you send out.
5. When do Most Retweets Happen?
In a recent infographic from Kissmetrics it showed that most retweets happen around 5pm so maybe that’s a time to try out a ‘please retweet’? Of course, you need to test this out.
Does it Really Matter What Time You Tweet?
It’s very useful to figure out when your audience is online and useful to test if there is any significant difference in attention you get for your Tweets depending on the time you send out.
But quite often if you don’t have a large following and are not very active on Twitter then it’s going to be difficult to figure out what times work best. Unless your audience is not global. If your audience is not global you can rule out the times that your audience is sleeping. You know that between 12am and 6am most of them are sleeping!
Without doing any analytics you should know roughly when your audience is online. But one of the big problems is that unless you are testing out with the same tweets then it’s very difficult to figure out if you got more exposure because of the tweet or the time.
An experiment could be that you send a selection of the exact same tweet at different times over the space of a month and see what works best!
The best time to tweet is not always when most of your audience is online. When most of your audience is online this is the most competitive time to tweet. If you have a global audience the best time to tweet is multiple times and some of those times may be when a very small percentage of your audience is not online but you don’t to ignore the one that does.
What is your opinion? Have you worked out the best time to tweet?
Clock image by Shutterstock