Data Driven Strategies for Finding the Best Time to Post on Instagram and TikTok
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It can be frustrating to create amazing content, only for it to go unnoticed, but what if I told you that one of the reasons your content isn’t performing well is that you’re posting at the wrong time? It’s true! Posting at the optimal time on Instagram can make a significant difference in the visibility and engagement of your posts.
In this blog post, we’ll explore how to find the best time to post on Instagram, starting with understanding your target audience, using TikTok and Instagram Insights and third-party analytics tools, and then experiment with posting times to identify the optimal times to post based on data. Trust me, this information will be a game-changer for your Instagram game!
Does it really matter what time you post
Yes, in our opinion, it absolutely does matter what time you post on Instagram and TikTok. Posting at the right time can have a significant impact on the engagement and reach of your content, while posting at the wrong time can result in your posts being buried in your followers’ feeds.
Although the platforms don’t show posts in chronological order, the algorithm takes into account various factors such as engagement, recency, and relevance when determining which posts to show to each user.
This means that even if you post at the “optimal” time, your content may not necessarily appear at the top of your followers’ feeds, but, posting at a time when your target audience is most active on the platform can still increase the likelihood of your content being seen and engaged with.
When you post at a time when your target audience is most active, you increase the chances of your content being seen, on the other hand, if you consistently post at times when your target audience is not active on the platform, your content is more likely to get buried in their feed, resulting in lower engagement and reach. This can make it harder to attract new followers and keep your current ones engaged with your content.
In addition to timing, the frequency and consistency of your posts is also a something you should be considering. By establishing a consistent posting schedule, you can train your audience to expect and look forward to your content, leading to increased engagement and reach over time. Sporadic or infrequent posting can make it harder to build a loyal following and can result in lower engagement with future content.
Understanding your target audience
The first step in finding the best time to post on Instagram is understanding your target audience. Who are they, and when are they most active on the platform? It’s essential to identify your audience’s demographics and behaviour patterns, such as their age range, location, and interests.
Let’s say you create content about budget travel and your target audience is primarily young travellers aged 18-24. In this case, it’s essential to understand the behaviour patterns of this demographic on social media to identify the best times to post. For example, this age group may be more likely to be browsing social media late at night, so posting content between 8 pm and 11 pm may be an effective strategy.
On the other hand, let’s say you run a small business that caters to a local community, such as a coffee shop in a specific city, your target audience may be more location-based, and your posting schedule may need to reflect this. For example, you might find that your customers are most active on Instagram during their morning commute, between 7 am and 9 am, or during lunch breaks, from 12 pm to 2 pm. Posting content during these times may increase the likelihood of reaching your target audience and driving engagement with your content.
Insights is a built-in tool to Instagram and TikTok that allows you to access valuable data on your followers, including age and location demographics, engagement metrics, and more. To access insights, you need to switch to a business or creator profile, and then tap the Insights tab from your profile page. By analysing this data, you can gain insights into when your audience is most active on the platform, helping to improve your posting strategy.
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Utilising 3rd party tools
In addition to insights, there are several third-party analytics tools that you can use to find the best time to post on Instagram. These tools provide additional insights into your account’s performance and can help you identify the optimal times to post.
One of the most popular tools is Later, which is a social media management tool that allows you to plan, schedule, and publish your Instagram content. It offers a range of features that can help streamline your content strategy and save you time, including a visual content calendar, a media library, and an analytics dashboard.
With Later, you can schedule your Instagram posts in advance, ensuring that your content goes live at the most effective times for your audience.
It also includes a Best Time to Post feature, which analyses your Instagram account’s engagement data to determine the times when your audience is most active on the platform.
While Instagram Insights and third-party analytics tools can provide valuable insights into the best times to post on Instagram, it’s important to remember that every audience is unique. What works for one account may not work for another, so it’s essential to experiment with posting times to find what works best for your specific audience.
One way to experiment with posting times is to try posting at different times throughout the day and week and track your engagement metrics by making note of when you post and how your posts perform, including metrics like impressions, reach, and engagement rate.
After a few weeks of experimenting, you should start to see patterns that will help you to identify the best times to post for maximum audience reach. It’s also worth noting that your audience’s behaviour may change over time, so it’s important to continue monitoring your engagement metrics and adjusting your posting schedule accordingly and don’t be afraid to try posting at different times to find what works best for your specific audience.
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The best time to post according to research
So when is the best time to post in general? While there is no one-size-fits-all answer to the best times to post on Instagram, there are some general guidelines that can help you get started. Keep in mind that these guidelines are based on industry research and may not work for every account, so it’s best to use them as a starting point and experiment with posting times to find what works best for your audience.
Photo by Camilo Jimenez
According to industry research, the best times to post on Instagram are generally weekdays from 9 am to 11 am and 1 pm to 3 pm, but of course this depends on the time zone of your audience and if you have a global audience may not help you at all! However, these times are generally considered to be the most optimal because they correspond to when people are most likely to check their phones during the day, such as during lunch breaks or commutes.