What time are you reading this? One guide says I should have sent it at 10pm. Another says 3pm would be better. What is the magic time that I can use to guarantee that my social media content is read? The answer is...14:28 - no. As ever, there is no one answer. The secret is not just to use guides but to try, check, and try again. If you want your vacation rentals to get exposure the best way is just to give it a go. You can then see what reaches your customers, and at what time it is most effective.
The first thing to decide is what you are actually going to say. There is an established concept in social marketing that your output should vary between producing content, advertising your business and just interacting with people in your networks. Another established theory is that only 10% of your output should really be considered as advertising. This blog calls it ‘Stock and Flow’. You should be making content that will last- blog posts, articles and infographics. This is your ‘Stock’. You should also have shorter, less permanent posts; comments on articles, Tweets, Likes, and Shares. This is your ‘Flow’. A good social media presence will show that you are involved and immersed in the industry. You converse with your customers and competitors, and value their input and opinions. You offer useful content as well as being focused on your own business. Experiment to find the right balance.
Another contentious issue is 'when'. What time will Facebook, Twitter or G+ updates give you the best results? There are plenty of very logical sounding guides in all of these sites. Tweeting between 1-3pm on a Monday gets the most reach. So, this is when you should post on Twitter, right? What you will need to consider is that this an average, based on world-wide results. The chances that your business or your content fits this paradigm might be more remote than first seems. What blogs like these offer is a great place to start.
Once you have your times set then comes frequency.This is where updating your social media can feel like a full-time job. However, as always, think about your business first. Companies such as news outlets are going to need to update far more often than vacation rentals. There is a fine line between inundating and having an active presence. Post a few times a day and see when your likes, comments and retweets seem to drop off. This will give you a good indication of when your audience have reached their limit with your content.
Next up is how many times you should say it. Repeating your high quality content will always manage to reach a few more people that missed it first time round. It will also reach new followers you have acquired since the original post.
You social media should refer to your site, but this doesn’t have to be one way. It should be seen as an intrinsic part of your business, not just an alternative channel to your website. Your site should also link to your social media. Have a look how these Kigo templates feature social media links and the other social media packages we offer.
There is so much advice out there about using social media it can be tempting to move from one set of ‘must-read’ rules to another. We think the best way is to test, analyse and modify. No site or blog truly knows your target audience, or the profile of your customers. The person that knows this best is you. There is plenty of great advice available but you will always need to put it through the filter of your own business. It may sound obvious but little things like knowing the timezone that the majority of your customers are in is part of this. If you tweet at 9am on the recommendation of a blog post but forget that it is 3am where the majority of your customers are, you are not going to get the results you want.
So read and post, all the time. Have a look at your most impactful social media posts, how do they differ from your less successful ones? Could it be the time, or the content? Perhaps it coincided with a major news story and got buried amongst the traffic. The one secret is to use guides, but to trust your results.