Blog | Walsworth

How often should you post to social media?

Written by Sarah Scott | August 30, 2017

People have a lot of different opinions about social media. One argument often revisited by marketers is frequency of social media posts.

If you’re looking for a definitive answer, I have bad news. The target is constantly moving, and there are several schools of thought.

We’ve collected the social media theories of several leaders and experts in the field about how often you should post.

Where should I be posting?

Pretty much everyone agrees that you need to find the channels that are right for your organization. Forbes recently published a helpful analysis of Snapchat, Facebook, Instagram and Pinterest. The Pew Research Center publishes a yearly report on social media usage and demographics, which you can use to track trends.

The beautiful thing about social media is that it’s fairly easy to start up a new account, so don’t hesitate to try something new if you think it might be a good fit for your organization.

Quality over quantity

It is possible to post too much, which BufferApp learned the hard way:

"We were posting way too much.

Just last year, we were posting four to five times to our Facebook Page and tweeting up to 14 times per day.

The company had plenty of content, but decided to reel it in and only share the very best.

When we posted less (once or twice per day) to our Facebook Page, our reach and engagement increased by three-fold.

Limiting our Facebook posts to just one or two per day forced us to share only the best content. These quality posts resonated with our Facebook fans, and the Facebook algorithm surfaced them to more people."

Just how much you should post remains up for debate, and opinions vary. However, what you post on social media needs to be high-quality content. Don’t make a post simply for the sake of writing a post. Share it because you think your followers will find value in it.

Break it down

The various social media platforms have different audiences and styles. Most everyone agrees you can post more to Twitter than to Facebook, although just how much more depends on the expert.

Let’s look at the recommendations by platform.

Twitter
This is a social media channel where you can post quite a bit. Once a tweet is put out into the world, it can quickly disappear into a feed. Add to that the brevity of Twitter, with a limit of 140 characters, and feel free to post frequently.

  • Adobe Spark suggests three tweets per day, but recommends organizations also regularly respond to questions, retweet and favorite other people’s content.
  • Buffer tweets from their account 14 times per day, between midnight and 10 p.m. Central time, but never more than once an hour. However, they cited studies suggesting that engagement starts to fall after three per day, and that five is the optimal number of tweets.
  • Constant Contact suggests a minimum of five tweets per day with no maximum.
  • Dow Social says six times a day is ideal.
  • Marketing expert Neil Patel tells Forbes that the number of daily tweets should depend on your goals, but one to five per day will optimize engagement.
  • Nulou recommends a minimum of five times per week, but says there’s no maximum number of tweets.
  • Quick Sprout and marketing expert Mari Smith both used the same graphic recommending three posts per day.
  • Revive suggests three to five times per day.
  • Tom Roy shared his opinions on LinkedIn. For Twitter, he suggests three tweets per day.
  • Vivial recommends a maximum of five tweets per day and a minimum of five per week.

Facebook
A constant theme among marketers was to avoid posting too much on Facebook or it will start to feel spammy. Facebook frequently changes its algorithm, which affects what people see. The best thing to do is to pay attention to the insights and analytics features that are available. Until you’re able to do that, err on the side of less content with high value for consumers.

  • Adobe Spark recommends six to 11 posts per week. That would mean one or two times each weekday and once over the weekend.
  • Buffer suggests five to 10 posts per week. They post to their accounts twice per day.
  • Dow Social follows the commonly used rule of two posts per day.
  • Constant Contact and Nulou both recommend a minimum of three times per week, but a maximum of 10 posts per week. Quality should always win out over quantity.
  • Marketing expert Neil Patel tells Forbes that it really depends on your following. The rule has generally been twice per day, but if your organization’s following is smaller, it may be beneficial to ease up.
  • Quick Sprout and marketing expert Mari Smith both used the same graphic recommending three posts per day.
  • Revive says once per day is ideal for most brands.
  • Social Media Week recommends posting five to 10 times per week.
  • Tom Roy is very firm in his opinion – a maximum of two posts per day.
  • Vivial recommends anywhere between three posts per week and one post per day.

Instagram
Instagram is all about the visuals. While the majority of social media time is spent on mobile devices, Instagram is special in that it was built specifically for mobile. So keep that in mind while posting – is it visually appealing and will it look good on a cell phone screen? The recommendations range from 1.5 to three times per day.

  • Dow Social recommends three times per day.
  • Neil Patel tells Forbes that it’s not about frequency, but consistency.
  • Revive says 1.5 posts per day, but you won’t hurt your company by posting more.
  • Tom Roy suggests two posts per day with an appealing visual aspect.

LinkedIn
This is the social network for professionals, so treat it differently than you would, for instance, Snapchat. Most experts suggest one post per day. Think about what you’re hoping to achieve with this post, and how it will come across to a person using LinkedIn.

  • Buffer recommends a minimum of 20 posts per month, but more if you have the resources.
  • Constant Contact suggests a minimum of twice per week, but a maximum of five posts per week.
  • Dow Social says one post per day is best.
  • Nulou suggests two to five posts per week.
  • Revive suggests one post per workday, which works out to roughly 20 posts per month.
  • Social Media Week suggests once per day. The end of the workday seems to be a popular time.
  • Tom Roy recommends one post per business day – or about 20 posts per month.
  • Vivial suggests anywhere from one post per week to one post per day.

Pinterest
This is a network where a high volume of posts is beneficial. Most experts recommend five to ten posts per day. Pinterest skews heavily female, and the platform works best when a post includes a good image.

  • Constant Contact suggests between five and 10 per day. Be sure to include large, quality images with each post.
  • Dow Social recommends three times per day.
  • Nulou recommends five to 10 posts per day.
  • Revive recommends three pins per day.
  • Social Media Week recommends at least five posts per day. If you have the content, make up to 30 posts per day.
  • Tom Roy echoes the calls for a high volume of posts, suggesting five times per day.

Google+
There are a lot of U.S. adults with a Google+ account, but not a lot of daily users. However, posting to Google+ is a good way to boost SEO value. Treat it similarly to Facebook. You should try for engagement, but don’t be disappointed if it’s minimal on this platform.

  • Buffer posts two times per day, mostly during work hours. They suggest you model your Google+ posting frequency on your Facebook model.
  • Constant Contact recommends a minimum of three posts per week, but a maximum of 10 per week.
  • Dow Social suggests posting three times per day.
  • Nulou says three to 10 times per week is plenty.
  • Tom Roy suggests three posts per day.
  • Vivial recommends a minimum of three posts per week and a maximum of one post per day.

Snapchat
The new darling of social media, Snapchat is the place to reach millennials. Because it’s fairly young (even for social media), there’s not a lot of data available.

Tom Roy suggests one to five posts per day. SnapChat stories disappear after 24 hours, so frequency is key.

However, a Hootsuite article says it’s OK to skip a day if you don’t have anything worthwhile to post.

Takeaways

If you want to go into more detail, Hubspot breaks down posting frequency by industry. And many say it all depends. Jay Baer says organizations should ignore the studies and only post to social media when they have something worthwhile to share.

Really, you need to choose what is right for your organization. Just make sure that whatever you create is of the highest quality possible. And if you’re sharing another organization’s content, it needs to be relevant to your audience.