As a Social Media Strategist, I spend lots of time on the internet – and on Facebook, in particular. I always love taking a minute at the beginning of the day to scroll through my feed and see what all my friends and family have been up to over the past 24 hours. You’ve no doubt read this blog’s title and are aware that the focus of this entry is all about frequency, so I’m sure you know where this little anecdote is going. We all have that one Facebook friend whose posts pop up again…and again…and again! It seems as though their fulltime job is posting content to their Facebook account! Whether it’s links, videos, or shares, you just keep seeing their name scroll by over and over again. Now, it’s not for me to tell any of my friends how to use Facebook – bless their hearts – but when it comes to social media marketing, there are very real problems with the “more is more” approach. Today, I’m going to help you determine how frequently you should be posting to social media.
More Isn’t More…But Less Isn’t Always More, Either
Choosing how often to post to your business’s social media accounts can be a bit of a tricky proposition. Now, to be clear, there certainly isn’t any hard-and-fast “right answer” that exists when deciding how much and how often to post to social media. It depends on a number of factors, including the nature of your business, which social platforms you’re using, and setting manageable goals for yourself.
One thing I will caution against, though, is posting either too much, or too little. Posting too infrequently means that the great content you’re putting out will likely be lost amongst the swirling eddies and chaotic tides of the social media world – with all the incredible posts being created every second all over the world, it’s important to put out content enough that what you’re doing isn’t lost in the deluge. Posting too often, on the other hand, can often cause a similar effect – your content can effectively start drowning itself, to the point where that great photo you put out on Instagram might go largely ignored amongst the other five that went out on your account that same day.
So, What Is The Right Amount to Post, Then?
As I’d mentioned earlier, there is no “perfect” amount or frequency to post. But, we do have some pointers on determining what’s right for you and your business.
- Consider the platform. By coming to conclusions regarding which social media platforms you’ll be using, you can start to determine how often you’ll need to be putting up posts. Twitter is great for putting out continuous, bite-sized bits of content – it’s hard to over-post on this platform. Facebook, on the other hand, should be limited to one or two posts per day at a maximum – unless you’ve got +10,000 followers, at which point you can feel free to bump it up by an extra post or two. Every platform is different, and it’s important to take this fact into account when determining how often to post.
- Build your content calendar. To get a good feel for how much time you’ll need to invest into maintaining your social media account, begin by building a content calendar a few weeks in advance of when you’d like to start posting things out. This will give you an idea of how much time you will need to put into crafting posts, sourcing content, and planning any strategies. Creating content becomes an easier and more efficient process the more you do it, but this first run at things will give you an idea of the time commitment involved.
- Don’t forget about engagement. Every time you publish a post on social media, it’s important to follow this up with engagement. The whole point of social media marketing is to connect with your followers and create a dialogue with them, so just publishing posts and then abandoning the engagement piece of the puzzle won’t do much for your business or online presence. Start off by setting aside about 30 minutes each week for engagement, and see if you’re able to do all the liking, sharing, thanking, and retweeting required of your various accounts in that period of time.
- Tally everything together, and determine your frequency. Now that you’ve experienced the time investment required for the frequency you’ve started off on, add up all the minutes and hours you’ve spent on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, et al, and take a step back. Does this seem like a manageable level? If so, congratulations: you’ve found your frequency! If it’s too much, or if you feel that you’d like to do more, adjust your frequency accordingly.
Above All, Be Consistent
Social media marketing requires a fairly major investment of time and energy to execute properly, and there really isn’t a “perfect” frequency to aim for – it’s all about balancing the needs of your business with the demands of your online marketing. One piece of advice I will give, however, is to be consistent. Social media happens in real time – there’s no going back to make up for lost time (or posts!). Don’t be afraid to tweak your frequency if you’re finding yourself stretched a bit too thin, but be consistent in your efforts. Social media requires regular check-ins, and spotty updating can make a business appear to be out-of-touch or unorganized. Less-frequent, consistent updates are much more beneficial to your online presence than bursts of posts being uploaded over a few days, followed by weeks or months of silence.
Marketing through social media can quickly end up eating through hours of your work week. If you want to reap the benefits of social media marketing, but don’t have the time to devote to creating posts and monitoring accounts, give me a call. I’ll come up with a calendar full of great, unique content perfect for your business, and will handle all the day-to-day management of your social media so that you don’t have to!