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The best times to post on social media in 2021

Do you know the best times to post on social media in 2021? Find out what is the best time to post Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, Twitter, TikTok, and more.

Reaching your audience takes precise planning and research into the best times to post on social media. Each platform needs strategic approaches to maximize how well your content does across all channels. But before you get started, here are some questions you should tackle first:

  • What kind of audiences does each social media platform have? – Audiences on LinkedIn are very different from Instagram audiences. Clearly defining your audiences will help you dive deeper into your posting strategy.

  • What time zone is my target market in? – Audiences can vary depending on the timezone. It’s important to identify how scheduling works for your timezone so you can better allocate your time and energy to the right audiences.

  • When is the highest engagement during the day? During the week? – Larger audiences don’t necessarily mean higher engagement. You have to keep track of when your audiences are active the most, while also keeping an eye on holidays, events, current trends, and key influencers to see what’s attracting the most engagement.

Keep in mind that there’s no perfect answer for the question of when’s the best time to post on social media – there’s only good research and planning.

Luckily, we have done the work for you, looking at data from Socialbakers (now part of Emplifi) so you can get the best results for each of your social media campaigns. For the sake of simplicity, we will pull our focus towards US time zones for most of the platforms listed below.

Table of Contents

The best times to post on Facebook

Discovering the best times to post on Facebook just got easier with Emplifi's AI. The following graphs show the possible impressions based on user activity on social media during the time of day and day of the week. The darker the squares, the higher activity.

Don’t forget that your posting strategy is just as important as your organic reach on Facebook. As these go hand-in-hand, always keep your organic strategy in mind when creating your posting strategy. Let's look at the following data from Socialbakers (now part of Emplifi):

Best time for content scheduling & publishing
Best Time to post on Facebook in 2020 in the US East Coast by Impressions
  • For the US in both PST and EST, the best time to post on Facebook throughout the week is between 8 am and 10 am. Most people check their phones when they awake or right before they start their day

  • The highest activity is between 10 am to 1 pm, so it’s best to post right before the highest activity starts

  • Activity starts earlier in the morning at 5:00 am on the west coast compared to the east coast

  • Users from the east coast are more active later in the evening till about 10:00 pm

  • What’s common for both coasts is that users are less active on Saturdays compared to the rest of the week

Best Time to post on Facebook in 2020 in the UK Timezone by Impressions
  • The best time to post on Facebook in the UK is during the morning, between 8 am and 11 am

  • The UK's highest activity is in the middle of the day from 10:00 am to 3:00 pm. Posting right when the highest activity starts will give your post traction throughout the day

  • One major difference between the US and UK time zones is that users in the UK are more active during the middle of the day

Best Time to post on Facebook in 2020 in Europe by Impressions
  • The best time to post in Europe is between 7 am to 10 am throughout the weekdays

  • Mondays and Tuesdays are the best days to post since activity fades slowly into the weekend

  • Saturdays are the lowest activity compared to the rest of the week

  • On the weekends, you can post later in the morning from 9 am to 11 am since the highest activity starts later on

Timings like these are great to know where you stand by benchmarking your posts. The best way to figure out your competitive advantage for your brand or industry is to check your metrics on your Emplifi dashboard. 

Emplifi features PrimeTime for better content scheduling and publishing decisions. By having a strong Facebook SEO posting strategy, you’ll be able to easily maximize your reach and engagement with smart publishing recommendations tailored to each of your Facebook pages' active audiences – especially useful if your business runs localized pages in different regions around the world.

The best times to post on Instagram 

Instagram is the top choice for influencers and content creators looking for brand collaborations, and although Facebook’s user base is larger, Instagram’s one billion monthly active users are incredibly engaged. 

  • Hubspot found, on average, that the best time to post on Instagram is during lunchtime or at the end of a typical workday for US time zones — 1 pm and 5 pm

  • The best time to post video content to Instagram is between 9 pm and 8 am on any day of the week. Bedtime browsing!

  • Keep in mind that Instagram is on a non-chronological timeline. However, the time you post is still important because it impacts how the algorithms decide where to place your content

If you're posting when your followers are most active, your content will pick up steam much faster and Instagram will push it further up the feed, resulting in even more interactions. By knowing the best times to post on Instagram, you can create engaging Instagram captions to take your posting strategy to the next level. 

The best times to post on Twitter

Unlike some other platforms, on Twitter it’s less about publishing at exactly the right time than it is about keeping up a healthy volume of tweets so that you stay on your audience’s Twitter newsfeed. 

Digital marketing guru Neil Patel mapped out a strategy in his in-depth look at the best times to post on Twitter. The data he found on the subject is fascinating for the US market:

  • Tweeting at 5 pm EST allows you to catch people as they are leaving the office and scrolling on their commute home

  • To boost your click-through rates, optimal tweet times will vary a bit: 12 pm (Noon) and 6 pm will net you the most website clicks both midweek and on weekends

To create a powerful Twitter marketing strategy, you should always look at your own data to see when the best posting times for your individual business would be. On the Emplifi platform, you can easily see when your audiences are the most active on Twitter at a glance to boost your engagement rates.

Best times to post on Twitter in 2020

The best times to post on LinkedIn 

With a growth rate of about two new profiles per second and over 500 million members, LinkedIn is the world’s largest professional network. The people using LinkedIn are not looking for fluff, they are more interested in engaging conversations. 

  • Aim for Tuesdays through Thursdays for the best days to post on Linkedin (Mondays and Fridays can be a bit slow)

  • Publish between 9 am and 11 am to catch users in their burst of morning activity

  • Posting early in the day will also allow your content to pick up some traction for when your audience checks in again towards the end of the day

Users have created great content to generate sales leads for their business through LinkedIn. Now that you know the best times to post on LinkedIn, you can attract the right audiences on LinkedIn when they are most engaged. 

The best times to post on YouTube

When posting on YouTube, keep in mind that YouTube is under the Google umbrella. If you’re familiar with Google and SEO, you know that YouTube videos are indexed and ranked in Google searches.

  • The best time to post on YouTube (timezones CST and EST) is between 2 pm and 4 pm because the highest traffic is from 7 pm to 10 pm

  • As the weekend approaches, Thursday or Friday

  • During the weekend, 10 am to 11 am is the best time to post since most people are active in the afternoon

In order to get a good ranking for your YouTube video on Google search, posting earlier before the traffic and YouTube engagement rate increases will give you that advantage. 

The best times to post on TikTok 

As the iconic app grows every day, brands are trying to find ways to use TikTok for business. A 15-second video can gain a lot of traction for your brand as long as you post at the right time. However, the best times for posting on TikTok can vary throughout the week. Here are the best times to post on TikTok:

  • Throughout the week go for early mornings from 6 am to 9 am, right when people are waking up and checking their phones before they get ready for the day

  • Don’t forget about bedtime browsing! Mondays and Wednesdays from 10:00 pm to 11:00 pm deliver results

  • On the weekend, mornings from 7 am to 11 am, and dinner time from 4 pm to 8 pm

Here’s a tip – people have been reposting their TikTok videos on Instagram, so you can do the same to gain more reach and visibility. Check the best times to post on Instagram mentioned earlier in this blog. 

The best times to post on Pinterest 

Posting on Pinterest really depends on the type of pins you post, the boards you follow, and the types of audiences. Content quality is important for Pinterest’s algorithm since the platform uses Smart Feed, which was designed to create a more personalized feed for Pinterest users. 

To improve your Pinterest marketing strategy and to get your pins into more personalized Smart Feeds, Pinterest takes into account three things: image quality, meaningful descriptions, and consistent pinning to contribute to the Pinterest community. 

  • The best time to post on Pinterest is between 8 pm and 11 pm and between 2 am and 4 am

  • If most of your audience works a 9-5 job, the best time to post on Pinterest is before/after work hours and lunchtime; avoid posting pins during working hours

  • General tip: you can never go wrong with bedtime browsing from 8 pm to 11 pm

The best times to post on Snapchat

Snapchat is used on a daily basis and it’s one of those nocturnal apps that keeps bedtime browsers entertained till they fall asleep. Other than personal use, Snapchat for business is great for marketing your business with short, quality content. So how can you get the most out of it?

  • Ideally, the best day to post on Snapchat is every day. Keep the frequency up by adding content to your stories at least 2-3 times a day

  • Target bedtime browsers from 9 pm to 11 pm

The takeaway

Whatever your social media goals are, there is no one-size-fits-all solution for posting at the right time. It takes precise planning and research to really get the results you need to improve your next campaign.

And it’s not easy, you may not be satisfied with your first campaign results, but that’s why you have to create engaging content and organize your social media posting schedule to the T. Knowing the best times to post on social media can really improve your content strategy and help you understand more about your audiences.

Editor's Note: This article was originally published on socialbakers.com. Any statistics or statements included in this article were current at the time of original publication.

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