How much is too much on social media? I’m often asked if it’s possible to post too much on social media. Does it affect algorithms? Does it impact reach? Won’t you just annoy people by posting too often? The questions comes in a variety of guises, but essentially, what people are really asking me is how often they should be posting or what’s the maximum they should set.
How to keep social media social
Imagine you’re in conversation with someone at a business networking event. If they’re constantly talking and don’t let you get a word in edgeways. If they don’t actively listen to you. If they only talk about themselves or their business… well, you’d probably look for the nearest exit opportunity wouldn’t you? Or, try and send some ‘save me’ signals to any partners in crime who might be in the room with you! Just because it’s online – doesn’t mean it’s any different. Be careful not to overshare or post for posting’s sake. Every piece of content you share, every update should have purpose, meaning and/or value.
Posting cadence and the algorithms
It is true that if you don’t post enough you may get penalised in some social algorithms – however, posting too often can also see your reach suffer. There’s lots of guidance out there, lots of data that suggests a set figure. However, there are a huge range of markers that can affect optimal posting cadence. How big your audience is, and how engaged they are with you, how aggressive your paid social advertising strategy is and the budget or targeting options you are using. Also, your audience in terms of sector or geography can have an effect, and finally, how committed your interaction and engagement strategy is.
My advice, split test and see for yourself. Make sure you post or tweet an update daily, five days out of seven in the first instance, then increase this and monitor the changes in your reach.
I’d suggest starting with the following:
· Facebook – 1 per day, rising to a maximum 4 a day
· Twitter – 2 per day, rising to a maximum 8 per day
· Instagram – 1 post per day, rising to a maximum 3 per day
· Instagram Stories – 1 per day, rising to a maximum of 6 per day
· LinkedIn Company Page – 1 per day, rising to a max of 10 per week
· LinkedIn Personal profile – 1 per day, rising to a max of 10 per week (Posts you share from other individuals or companies are included in this number)
Feel free to test posting less often too – especially on LinkedIn. For users with smaller networks, especially (500 or less) keeping posts to a max of 3 or 4 a week may yield better results. With that in mind, make it part of your strategy to test and test again as your audience grows. How often you post when you have 500 likes versus when you have 5000 may also see a need to change your posting cadence.
There’s more to social media than just posting updates – Interaction and engagement strategy
There is so much more to running a social media channel than just simply posting and tweeting! You should be going out and engaging with other members of the online community too.
As a Facebook page, you can engage with other pages. So head to the pages with larger audiences and find the posts that you can see have gained attention – then say something! Join the conversation.
On Twitter and Instagram, you can engage with all users irrespective of whether they are individuals or businesses, so again use this opportunity. Look for the hashtags and engage with relevant content that will also be attracting your audience. Be part of the community!
On LinkedIn as an individual, you have the biggest opportunity – discussions are business-orientated, and there is always something going on in every industry. Whether it’s IR35 in the contractor market, HMRC changes relating to Tax, mergers and acquisitions or the latest innovations – there will be something you can make a valuable comment on or something you can share with your audience to ask for their opinions on!
It’s a bit trickier on LinkedIn company pages to reach out in honesty, but over the last year we’ve been given a voice, and I can only imagine further opportunity to be in the pipeline on that front. (Especially when social media trends are leaning towards more 121 communications and use of ephemeral content!).
SO how often should you post? Unless I’m running your accounts – I can’t tell you with 100% confidence, but I can show you and help you find out what your cadence should be!