Maximize Your Blogging Efforts (Without Working Harder)
For the answer, lets analyze TrackMaven’s April 2014 findings based on examining 4,618 blogs, 1,167,426 total posts collected from these blogs, and 1,915,428,305 social shares associated with these posts.
As any good accounting student will tell you, the best time to publish your blog posts depends on your goals.
Average blog post frequency by day
- Tuesday: 18% of posts published
- Wednesday: 18% of posts published
- Thursday: 17.9% of posts published
- Monday: 17.2% of posts published
- Friday: 15.9% of posts published
- Sunday: 6.8% of posts published
- Saturday: 6.3% of posts published
Average social shares associated with blog posts by day
- Saturday: 18% of all social shares
- Sunday: 14.6% of all social shares
- Tuesday: 14.1% of all social shares
- Wednesday 14.1% of all social shares
- Thursday: 14.1% of all social shares
- Friday: 12.7% of all social shares
- Monday: 12.5% of all social shares
13% of blog posts were published during the weekend.
Although only 6.3% of blog posts were published on Saturdays, these articles received 18% of the total social shares.
Actionable Marketing Tips:
- Test and measure to determine which days yield the best results for your blog posts. Remember it’s not about when you’re in the office creating your blog. It’s about when your audience is ready to consume it.
- Consider moving to less frequent publishing times to take advantage of lower competition to help your content to shine.
What time of day is most effective for blog posts?
Understand your audience and their content consumption habits before you determine your publishing schedule.
Blog posts tend to be published within business hours from roughly 9AM to 6PM EST, peaking at 11AM-12PM (6.53% of blog posts are published in this timeframe.) Blog posting frequency steadily declines after 6PM EST.
The peaks of social media engagement cluster outside of “normal” work hours. Publish blogs between 9PM-midnight EST to maximize social shares, especially between 10PM and 11PM when engagement peaks.
Regardless of whether you’re publishing business or consumer oriented content on your blog, your audience is consuming it during their quiet time, nights and weekends. Blog posts published between 9PM and midnight on the east coast of the US have the most social shares.
Actionable Marketing Tip:
- Publish blog content outside of the business day to reach your target audience when they’re ready to consume it. The highest engagement occurs between 10 PM and 11PM when readers are relaxed and at home.
Blog post titles matter
Want your blog to stand out from the crowd and be shared? It’s not just what you write that matters but also how you say it. Pay attention to your blog title and its punctuation. (BTW-Here are 7 secrets to creating headlines that attract readers and shares with research!)
60 character blog titles yield greater effectiveness, maximize SEO and long-tail keywords while most blog titles contain 40 characters. The additional characters provide information that helps search engines and readers. (Here are other blogging SEO tips.)
Most of the 1+ million blog posts were declarative headlines.
- 94.89% of blog titles didn’t include a question mark.
- 5.01% of blog titles including a single question mark yielded 46.30% social shares, almost twice the amount titles lacking a question mark.
- Average engagement was lowest for titles 2 or more question marks. Too much of a good thing is ineffective.
- 97.24% of blog titles don’t contain an exclamation point. The average social shares decreased for the less than 0.1% of blog titles that included up to 3 exclamation points.
- 4 exclamation points were used by less than 0.1% of blog posts but yielded an average of 2,027 social shares on average or 33.72% of the total since real excitement is shareworthy.
- 12.14% of blog titles used all lower case letters.
- Less than 1% of blog titles used all upper case letters
- 38% of titles contained either the word “you” or “your” in the title. (Check out this list of 131 words that increase web traffic.)
Actionable Marketing Tip:
- Spend time crafting the best title you can since it’s the major element that determines how your blog post will perform.
Don’t forget to share your blog posts on social media platforms!
Social shares appear highly correlated with social media platform size. (BTW–Here are 23 ways to promote your blog via social media.)
- Tweets accounted for 38.6% of total social shares of blog posts.
- Facebook Likes accounted for 33.8% and Facebook Shares accounted for 26.7% of total social shares of blog posts.
Actionable Marketing Tip:
- Tailor your blog post content and related social shares by platform.
- Test what type of blog posts work best on social media platforms.
This blog related research provides insights to enable you to make your blog more effective without necessarily adding more resources by changing your blog post timing.
Instead spend time assessing your blog title and post distribution before you hit publish.
What’s your favorite blogging tip to improve your blog’s effectiveness without using more resources?
Join me at Social Media Marketing World this coming Spring in sunny San Diego, California, where I'll be presenting a session on Blogging.
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