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How to Plan & Run an SEO Campaign (Step-by-Step Guide)



How to Plan & Run an SEO Campaign (Step-by-Step Guide)

An SEO campaign is a structured set of tasks that should lead to better rankings on search engines. If you actively do SEO, you likely engage in SEO campaigns, whether you call it that or not.

But what should the process from campaign idea to evaluation look like? There are often many steps and people involved, so proper planning is needed to achieve effectiveness and the desired outcome.

We’ve run many SEO campaigns, including some unique ones. You’ll learn to navigate the process from start to finish with many examples along the way.

These are the steps we’ll go through:

  1. Discover and prioritize your SEO opportunities
  2. Set up an SEO objective
  3. Outline the process to achieve the objective
  4. (Re)write the content
  5. Acquire and build backlinks
  6. Monitor the results
  7. Evaluate the campaign

Let’s dive in.

1. Discover and prioritize your SEO opportunities

The first rule of planning SEO campaigns is simple. Don’t start if you lack information and data to back up your decisions. You can come up with countless SEO campaign ideas. But without research, you can’t tell which opportunities are worth pursuing and prioritizing.

The research we’re going to dive into will help us estimate the effort needed to run any SEO campaign and its potential impact. This concept can be illustrated by the Impact Effort Matrix:

Impact Effort Matrix. Y axis labeled "impact." X axis labeled "effort." 4 sections from top in clockwise direction: "quick wins," "long term project," "not going to happen," and "backlog."

Now, because an SEO campaign is defined as a set of tasks, we’ll assume that all the ideas will fall into the two quadrants on the right side.

We need two essential sets of SEO data that will help us come up with the SEO campaign ideas and add them into the matrix. Welcome to keyword and backlink research. If you’ve already done this, feel free to skip to the second step.

Keyword research

Keyword research is the process of understanding the language your target customers use when searching for your products, services, and content. It then involves analyzing, comparing, and prioritizing the best keyword opportunities for your website.

Now, I’m not going to dive into the process of keyword research, as we have a whole guide about that. But do note planning and running a campaign is more advanced than just picking a few keywords and writing content about them.

Here are a few use cases that are worth pursuing as an SEO campaign based on keyword data:

Most of these require an outreach campaign on top of the content creation to maximize the potential. That’s where the other set of data comes into play.

Backlink research

Backlink research is the process of understanding what makes websites link to one another in your niche and gathering link opportunities for your own pages. Basically, it’s about getting all the necessary information to grow a strong backlink profile for your website that should lead to better rankings.

A lot of backlink research stems from a sort of SEO competitive analysis. It can be in the form of analyzing intersecting links where you check which websites link to your competitors but not to you. This Link Intersect report can be accessed in Ahrefs’ Site Explorer:

Link Intersect results

Then we can analyze the type of content that gets the most links (link bait) in your niche in the Best by links report in Ahrefs’ Site Explorer:

Best by links report results

Or do the most straightforward analysis, which is going through the Backlinks and Referring domains reports—all in Site Explorer:

Backlinks report results

Getting all this research and processes right allows you to launch outreach campaigns that should get high-quality backlinks to your most important pieces of content. Technically, any outreach campaign can be considered an SEO campaign on its own. (Ideally, it’s best to launch it right after the “content creation” step.)

2. Set up an SEO objective

Got an SEO campaign idea that’s worth pursuing? Great! You should set up an objective for that. In other words, what should be the quantifiable outcome of that campaign? What are you aiming to achieve?

Everyone’s SEO objectives are different. But generally, the four most common ones revolve around:

  • Increasing conversions and sales from organic traffic.
  • Increasing search visibility (share of voice) for a set of keywords.
  • Ranking higher for a highly competitive keyword (to outrank a competitor, drive a lot of traffic, etc.).
  • Getting high-quality backlinks.

If you’re not sure which objective to choose, these four are always a good starting point.

For example, one of our latest SEO campaigns revolved around creating a “stats” page and then building links to it (to test how successful we’d be so that we could create a case study about it).

The main SEO objective was to rank in the top three for “seo statistics” within three months. Another objective that would help to get us there was to build at least 20 high-quality backlinks to the page from an outreach campaign. 

We SEOs can’t really guarantee any results, but these objectives should still adhere to the popular SMART objectives guidelines. You need to find a good balance between the specific, measurable, achievable, relevant, and timely parameters of the objectives.

The time period is arguably the most difficult parameter to estimate. For better ranking objectives, I suggest going for at least three months, preferably even six months and more if your website isn’t generally highly competitive on the SERPs.

Based on our research, only 5.7% of newly published pages get to the top 10 search results within a year. And if they do, it mostly takes between two to six months:

Bar graph showing most pages achieve high DR in 2 to 6 months

Domain Ranking (DR) shows the strength of a website’s backlink profile compared to the others in our database on a 100-point scale. It’s a solid proxy for assessing how competitive a website can be on the SERPs.

By the way, if your time frame is long enough (six months+), your keyword ranking and backlink objectives may eventually go hand in hand. The better the content’s backlinks, the higher the chances that content will rank well. And the higher a page ranks, the more people will see it and link to it naturally.

Once you know what you’re aiming for with the campaign, it’s time to start planning.

Recommended reading: How to Set the Right SEO Goals With 3 Examples

3. Outline the process to achieve the objective

Let’s now dissect the one big SEO campaign into a structured set of tasks. To help us get there, we’ll use the “SEO goals” pyramid concept:

SEO goal pyramid divided into 3 sections (from top to bottom): outcome, performance, process

What we’ve set up in the previous step is the outcome goal and maybe even some performance goals that are evident right away, such as the need to build backlinks. We’re going to uncover the rest of the steps and goals now.

Let’s continue with the example of the SEO campaign for our “stats” page. The outcome goal was to rank in the top three search results for “seo statistics” within three months.

Here, we can tell there are two performance goals that serve as the best way to achieve the outcome goal:

  1. Write the best SEO statistics page
  2. Build at least 20 high-quality backlinks to the page via an outreach campaign

The first performance goal is obvious. But setting up the second goal is more nuanced because pages ranking at the top for the most competitive keywords tend to have hundreds, if not thousands, of backlinks earned throughout many years—numbers that you can’t achieve with an outreach campaign.

That’s now largely the case of the “seo statistics” keyword as well. There are pages with thousands of backlinks from thousands of referring domains:

Don’t be discouraged by these numbers, though. Most backlinks come from spammy websites and can be completely disregarded.

Since you should only go after potentially high-quality backlinks, it’s better to look at the whole backlink profile of those pages ranking at the top by clicking on the caret and going over to the Backlinks report:

SERP overview for "seo statistics"; notably, caret showing "backlinks"

What I’ve just discovered is the #4 page doesn’t have any backlinks from pages that drive solid organic traffic despite it having thousands of backlinks:

Backlinks report results

Some other pages there do indeed have hard-to-beat backlink portfolios. But getting to the top of this SERP seems achievable for us within a relatively short period of time.

Based on some basic research, we can see hundreds of link prospects. This makes getting more than 20 acquired backlinks a doable task.

What’s left is to further dissect the performance goals into process goals:

  1. What do we need to do to write the best SEO statistics page?
  2. What do we need to do to build over 20 high-quality backlinks?

I already went ahead with the link building aspect, so I’ll stick to expanding on this area. It’s reasonable to expect a 5% outreach conversion rate. This means, on average, we need to reach out to 400 email addresses to get 20 backlinks.

This outreach process may include the following steps:

  • Narrow down link prospects to include only high-quality websites with the potential to link to you
  • Automatically find and validate email addresses
  • Have a convincing reason to reach out (e.g., they were missing some SEO stats or included outdated ones)
  • Put it all together into a table for automation purposes and/or tracking your progress
  • Write the outreach emails
  • Send the outreach emails
  • Do follow-ups

If you want to see this process in action, we’ve documented it in a video for the SEO campaign I mentioned earlier:

The completed SEO goals pyramid can then look like this:

SEO goal pyramid divided into 3 sections (from top to bottom): outcome, performance, process. Each section now has short writeup about the goal and how to measure said goal

You can also do this for the other performance goals. Now, you’ll have the whole SEO campaign process outlined. You can then start assigning tasks that will take you from start to finish.

As discussed earlier, most SEO campaigns largely revolve around writing or rewriting content. That content should either rank well on the SERPs by itself or at least help your other pages rank by passing link equity from all the attracted backlinks to these pages.

Let’s take a look at a few tips that will help you (re)write both keyword-focused content and link bait content. And if you come across a good keyword that can be covered in a way that will also attract many backlinks, even better—just combine both approaches.

Writing keyword-focused content

I’ll use this very article as an example. We had an older version of this article targeting the keyword “seo campaign” on our blog for a long time, but it never ranked well:

Site Explorer overview of original article on SEO campaign

The reason seems evident. When we take a look at the top-ranking pages for “seo campaign,” we see that the vast majority of them are guides. There’s not even one case study in sight:

SERP overview for "seo campaign"; all results are guides

One of the most important aspects of creating content to rank well on search engines is to align with search intent. It’s the “why” behind a search query.

In this case, most people looking up “seo campaign” want to see a guide on how to plan and run one. That’s exactly what this updated version does and why it has a much higher chance of ranking well.

Providing the right angle of the content to the readers is only one of the main aspects we have to take into account here.

For example, before I even write an outline, I think about the goal of the article, the expected search intent, my angle, how I can make it stand out (i.e., USP, which stands for unique selling proposition), and how much I can naturally mention our product (business potential on a scale from 0 to 3):

Michal's plan for the article

These are all general tips on writing whole pieces of content. You may want to plan and run a more specific type of SEO campaign, such as optimizing for featured snippets in bulk.

Writing link bait content

You should already know what type of content attracts the most links in your niche based on the backlink research mentioned earlier. That’s the easy part. Creating link-worthy content can be quite challenging and often requires a lot of effort.

In the marketing software industry that we’re in, the types of pages that get links most easily are:

  • Industry insights and data studies.
  • Landing pages with free, ready-to-use marketing tools.
  • Statistics pages.

Apart from the statistics pages, it’s close to impossible to develop such content without help from your data science and engineering teams.

But this also means there is a lack of such content types. Thus, having them on your site may result in you getting great links. Make your content the best entry on the SERP to be worth those links.

Recommended reading: Deconstructing Linkbait: How to Create Content That Attracts Backlinks

5. Acquire and build backlinks

SEO campaigns rarely end at just publishing content. That’s half of the job. What matters as much as content creation is content distribution that triggers link acquisition.

It’s even more important with link bait content that isn’t made for getting organic traffic. All the work will be in vain without proper content distribution.

Here’s what I mean by proper content distribution:

  • Plan an outreach campaign to get backlinks and/or exposure from prominent people in your niche
  • Promote the content with social media ads on top of the standard organic social posts that usually have limited reach
  • Share it with your email subscribers
  • Repurpose your content into social media posts, Quora answers, newsletters, etc., and share repeatedly
  • Update your internal links so readers of your other articles can click through and pages can pass their link equities

Of course, the outreach campaign is most relevant for the link building point. Sure, you can get links by simply getting the content in front of many people’s eyes, but it’s the direct email with a specific link building pitch that can get you the results quickly.

We have already looked into the steps and analysis required for planning an outreach campaign and creating link bait content. But we still haven’t discussed the power of public relations (PR) that can take the content distribution and link acquisition to a whole different level.

For example, when I analyzed the SEO strategy of Wise, I found one of the many aspects that stood out is how its creative PR campaigns intertwined with SEO goals.

Here’s its “nothing to hide” campaign, which addresses the issue of hidden fees in finance and banking:

What makes this clearly successful in terms of SEO is the supporting content on its website that attracts some of the links from big media names:

Referring domains report results

All this being said, there are no limits to link building campaigns. You can choose the good old proven way of attracting links or go with something even more creative as part of a larger PR campaign.

We’re now beyond the tactical execution of the campaign, and it’s time to shift to “analytics” mode. That’s a piece of cake when compared to all the planning and running of the campaign.

Get back to your SEO objectives and think about the KPIs and metrics needed to evaluate the campaign. Here are a few use cases of what metrics to track for some example outcome objectives:

  • Sales objectives – Organic conversions and assisted conversions in Google Analytics (or alternatives) from the pages that were part of the campaign.
Conversions data in Google Analytics
  • Search visibility objectives – Set up a keywords tracking project in Ahrefs’ Rank Tracker and tag keywords relevant to the campaign.
Rank Tracker overview
  • Keyword rankings objectives – Keyword rankings in Ahrefs’ Rank Tracker or Organic keywords report for the campaign page in Ahrefs’ Site Explorer.
Organic keywords report results
  • Backlinks acquisition objectives – Backlinks and Referring domains reports in Ahrefs’ Site Explorer to check retrospectively. You can use Ahrefs Alerts to get regular backlink acquisition updates.
Page to edit/set up alert in Ahrefs Alerts

First of all, I recommend making notes during the campaign and right after it ends. Did it go as planned? Is it replicable? Can you use any of the processes in the future? What can you do better next time? You won’t recall all the details weeks or months later when it’s time to finally evaluate the campaign, so jot down what’s important as you go along.

If all the monitoring and tracking have been set up, you may find out that you achieved your campaign objectives sooner than expected. In this case, weekly checks should be fine. Anything more frequent than that isn’t necessary.

But as we all know, SEO can be quite volatile, so don’t celebrate just yet if you encounter better rankings for the first time.

When the rather arbitrary date of your campaign evaluation comes (e.g., rank top three for “seo statistics” within three months), look at the historical performance. If you see somewhat consistent higher rankings or higher sales over a longer period, you can finally wrap things up and tell yourself it’s been a successful campaign.

For example, the SEO stats page I was referring to throughout the article ranks at the top positions consistently. It also got to #1 in two months:

Organic keywords report results; notably, line graph showing "position history" trends

But if you don’t meet your objectives, don’t take it as a failure.

We do try and set up SMART objectives. But in all honesty, it’s often a guessing game in SEO, especially when it comes to estimating the period of when the effects of the campaign should kick in.

I was once involved in an SEO project where it took two years to achieve an objective that many people thought would be a question of just a few months.

Staying curious, being patient, and learning from mistakes are invaluable SEO skills.

Final thoughts

Properly planning, running, and evaluating big SEO campaigns requires advanced SEO knowledge, experience, and skills. But as we’ve shown in the article, you can also take part in smaller but still impactful campaigns like outreach campaigns or on-page optimization campaigns.

Start small, and you’ll eventually get to work on achieving the most ambitious SEO objectives.

A great benefit of launching SEO campaigns is that you’ll get better at project management and communication, as these campaigns often require the cooperation of many people—sometimes even outside of the marketing team.

Got any questions? Ping me on Twitter.

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OpenAI Investigates ‘Lazy’ GPT-4 Complaints On Google Reviews, X




OpenAI Investigates 'Lazy' GPT-4 Complaints On Google Reviews, X

OpenAI, the company that launched ChatGPT a little over a year ago, has recently taken to social media to address concerns regarding the “lazy” performance of GPT-4 on social media and Google Reviews.

Screenshot from X, December 2023OpenAI Investigates ‘Lazy’ GPT-4 Complaints On Google Reviews, X

This move comes after growing user feedback online, which even includes a one-star review on the company’s Google Reviews.

OpenAI Gives Insight Into Training Chat Models, Performance Evaluations, And A/B Testing

OpenAI, through its @ChatGPTapp Twitter account, detailed the complexities involved in training chat models.

chatgpt openai a/b testingScreenshot from X, December 2023chatgpt openai a/b testing

The organization highlighted that the process is not a “clean industrial process” and that variations in training runs can lead to noticeable differences in the AI’s personality, creative style, and political bias.

Thorough AI model testing includes offline evaluation metrics and online A/B tests. The final decision to release a new model is based on a data-driven approach to improve the “real” user experience.

OpenAI’s Google Review Score Affected By GPT-4 Performance, Billing Issues

This explanation comes after weeks of user feedback about GPT-4 becoming worse on social media networks like X.

Complaints also appeared in OpenAI’s community forums.

openai community forums gpt-4 user feedbackScreenshot from OpenAI, December 2023openai community forums gpt-4 user feedback

The experience led one user to leave a one-star rating for OpenAI via Google Reviews. Other complaints regarded accounts, billing, and the artificial nature of AI.

openai google reviews star rating Screenshot from Google Reviews, December 2023openai google reviews star rating

A recent user on Product Hunt gave OpenAI a rating that also appears to be related to GPT-4 worsening.

openai reviewsScreenshot from Product Hunt, December 2023openai reviews

GPT-4 isn’t the only issue that local reviewers complain about. On Yelp, OpenAI has a one-star rating for ChatGPT 3.5 performance.

The complaint:

yelp openai chatgpt reviewScreenshot from Yelp, December 2023yelp openai chatgpt review

In related OpenAI news, the review with the most likes aligns with recent rumors about a volatile workplace, alleging that OpenAI is a “Cutthroat environment. Not friendly. Toxic workers.”

google review for openai toxic workersScreenshot from Google Reviews, December 2023google review for openai toxic workers

The reviews voted the most helpful on Glassdoor about OpenAI suggested that employee frustration and product development issues stem from the company’s shift in focus on profits.

openai employee review on glassdooropenai employee review on glassdoor

openai employee reviewsScreenshots from Glassdoor, December 2023openai employee reviews

This incident provides a unique outlook on how customer and employee experiences can impact any business through local reviews and business ratings platforms.

openai inc google business profile local serps google reviewsScreenshot from Google, December 2023openai inc google business profile local serps google reviews

Google SGE Highlights Positive Google Reviews

In addition to occasional complaints, Google reviewers acknowledged the revolutionary impact of OpenAI’s technology on various fields.

The most positive review mentions about the company appear in Google SGE (Search Generative Experience).

Google SGE response on OpenAIScreenshot from Google SGE, December 2023Google SGE response on OpenAI


OpenAI’s recent insights into training chat models and response to public feedback about GPT-4 performance illustrate AI technology’s dynamic and evolving nature and its impact on those who depend on the AI platform.

Especially the people who just received an invitation to join ChatGPT Plus after being waitlisted while OpenAI paused new subscriptions and upgrades. Or those developing GPTs for the upcoming GPT Store launch.

As AI advances, professionals in these fields must remain agile, informed, and responsive to technological developments and the public’s reception of these advancements.

Featured image: Tada Images/Shutterstock

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ChatGPT Plus Upgrades Paused; Waitlisted Users Receive Invites




ChatGPT Plus Upgrades Paused; Waitlisted Users Receive Invites

ChatGPT Plus subscriptions and upgrades remain paused after a surge in demand for new features created outages.

Some users who signed up for the waitlist have received invites to join ChatGPT Plus.

Screenshot from Gmail, December 2023ChatGPT Plus Upgrades Paused; Waitlisted Users Receive Invites

This has resulted in a few shares of the link that is accessible for everyone. For now.

RELATED: GPT Store Set To Launch In 2024 After ‘Unexpected’ Delays

In addition to the invites, signs that more people are getting access to GPTs include an introductory screen popping up on free ChatGPT accounts.

ChatGPT Plus Upgrades Paused; Waitlisted Users Receive InvitesScreenshot from ChatGPT, December 2023ChatGPT Plus Upgrades Paused; Waitlisted Users Receive Invites

Unfortunately, they still aren’t accessible without a Plus subscription.

chatgpt plus subscriptions upgrades paused waitlistScreenshot from ChatGPT, December 2023chatgpt plus subscriptions upgrades paused waitlist

You can sign up for the waitlist by clicking on the option to upgrade in the left sidebar of ChatGPT on a desktop browser.

ChatGPT Plus Upgrades Paused; Waitlisted Users Receive InvitesScreenshot from ChatGPT, December 2023ChatGPT Plus Upgrades Paused; Waitlisted Users Receive Invites

OpenAI also suggests ChatGPT Enterprise for those who need more capabilities, as outlined in the pricing plans below.

ChatGPT Plus Upgrades Paused; Waitlisted Users Receive InvitesScreenshot from OpenAI, December 2023ChatGPT Plus Upgrades Paused; Waitlisted Users Receive Invites

Why Are ChatGPT Plus Subscriptions Paused?

According to a post on X by OpenAI’s CEO Sam Altman, the recent surge in usage following the DevDay developers conference has led to capacity challenges, resulting in the decision to pause ChatGPT Plus signups.

The decision to pause new ChatGPT signups follows a week where OpenAI services – including ChatGPT and the API – experienced a series of outages related to high-demand and DDoS attacks.

Demand for ChatGPT Plus resulted in eBay listings supposedly offering one or more months of the premium subscription.

When Will ChatGPT Plus Subscriptions Resume?

So far, we don’t have any official word on when ChatGPT Plus subscriptions will resume. We know the GPT Store is set to open early next year after recent boardroom drama led to “unexpected delays.”

Therefore, we hope that OpenAI will onboard waitlisted users in time to try out all of the GPTs created by OpenAI and community builders.

What Are GPTs?

GPTs allow users to create one or more personalized ChatGPT experiences based on a specific set of instructions, knowledge files, and actions.

Search marketers with ChatGPT Plus can try GPTs for helpful content assessment and learning SEO.

There are also GPTs for analyzing Google Search Console data.

And GPTs that will let you chat with analytics data from 20 platforms, including Google Ads, GA4, and Facebook.

Google search has indexed hundreds of public GPTs. According to an alleged list of GPT statistics in a GitHub repository, DALL-E, the top GPT from OpenAI, has received 5,620,981 visits since its launch last month. Included in the top 20 GPTs is Canva, with 291,349 views.


Weighing The Benefits Of The Pause

Ideally, this means that developers working on building GPTs and using the API should encounter fewer issues (like being unable to save GPT drafts).

But it could also mean a temporary decrease in new users of GPTs since they are only available to Plus subscribers – including the ones I tested for learning about ranking factors and gaining insights on E-E-A-T from Google’s Search Quality Rater Guidelines.

custom gpts for seoScreenshot from ChatGPT, November 2023custom gpts for seo

Featured image: Robert Way/Shutterstock

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The Best Times To Post On Social Media In 2024




The Best Times To Post On Social Media In 2024

Marketers worldwide know the importance of having a solid social media marketing strategy – and a key part of this is finding the best times to post on social media.

The old adage ‘timing is everything’ holds especially true in the world of social media, where the difference between a post that fades into obscurity and one that goes viral can often be just a matter of when it was shared.

With an always-growing array of social platforms hosting billions of users worldwide, it has never been more challenging to stand above the noise and make your voice heard on social.

To determine the best times to post on social media in 2024, we reviewed original data from leading social media management tools.

It’s important to note that the data from these sources present a variety of findings and suggestions, which underscore the fact that social media is an ever-evolving landscape. The most crucial thing is understanding the behavior of your own target audience.

Let’s dive in.

The Best Times To Post On Social Media

Source Day Of Week Time To Post
Sprout Social Tuesday and Wednesday 9 a.m. – 2 p.m. Local
Hootsuite Monday 12 p.m. EST
CoSchedule Friday, Wednesday, and Monday (in that order) 7 p.m. Local
  • Best times to post on social media: 9 a.m. – 2 p.m.
  • Best days to post on social media: Monday and Wednesday.
  • Worst days to post on social media: Saturday and Sunday.

Determining an ideal time for posting on social media in general is complicated, as each platform is different, with unique users, features, and communities.

When deciding which social media platforms to focus on, you should think carefully about your brand’s target audience and overarching goals.

If you’re looking to reach a network of professionals, LinkedIn might be a good fit; if your brand is hoping to speak to Gen Z consumers, you might consider TikTok or Snapchat.

This explains why – when analyzing data from Sprout Social, Hootsuite, and CoSchedule on the best overall times to post on social media – we can draw some similarities but also see a variety of recommendations.

Weekdays emerge as a clear winner. CoSchedule and Sprout Social both highlight Wednesday as a good day, with Hootsuite and CoSchedule also highlighting Mondays as a strong day for engagement.

The most common time range among the sources is in the morning to mid-afternoon, with CoSchedule providing some very specific suggestions for post-timing.

Both CoSchedule and Sprout Social agree on avoiding Saturdays and Sundays.

The Best Times To Post On Facebook

Source Day Of Week Time To Post
Sprout Social Monday to Thursday 8 a.m. – 1 p.m. Local
Hootsuite Monday and Tuesday 1 p.m. EST
CoSchedule Friday, Wednesday, and Monday (in that order) 9 a.m. Local
  • Best times to post on Facebook: 8 a.m. – 1 p.m.
  • Best days to post on Facebook: Weekdays.
  • Worst day to post on Facebook: Sunday.

Facebook remains the most used social media platform in the world, with the largest advertising market share (16%).

While it’s experienced a shift in user demographics over recent years – now catering to older users – its popularity continues to climb, and its potential as a brand marketing tool cannot be disputed.

Regarding the best times to post on Facebook, all of our sources agree that weekdays are best. Sprout Social, Hootsuite, and CoSchdule all name Monday as a great day to engage on Facebook, along with calling out various other days of the week.

There is a general consensus that Sundays should be avoided.

The sources vary in their suggestions for optimal time slots, but generally speaking, early to mid-morning seems to be the most popular selection.

The Best Times To Post On YouTube

Source Day Of Week Time To Post
SocialPilot Sunday 2-4 p.m. EST
HubSpot Friday and Saturday 6-9 p.m. Local
  • Best times to post on YouTube: 2-4 p.m. on weekdays and 9-11 a.m. on weekends.
  • Best days to post on YouTube: Friday, Saturday, and Sunday.
  • Worst day to post on YouTube: Tuesday.

As the second most visited site in the world and the second most used social platform globally, YouTube offers an unparalleled opportunity for brands and individuals to connect with audiences through video.

And with its continued expansion – by introducing features like YouTube Shorts, initiatives like expanding the ways creators can get paid on the platform, and its increasing popularity as a search engine – the platform shows no signs of slowing.

YouTube is no longer just a video-sharing site; it’s a robust marketing tool that empowers businesses to raise brand awareness and drive meaningful engagement.

Finding recent data on the best times to post on YouTube proved harder than for some other channels, so these recommendations should be taken with a grain of salt.

While HubSpot suggests Friday and Saturday are the strongest days to publish on YouTube, SocialPilot specifically calls out Sunday as the most engaging day – so it’s worth experimenting with all three.

SocialPilot doesn’t specifically name the worst day, but according to HubSpot, you’d be wise to steer clear of Tuesday.

Both sources suggest the afternoon as an effective time for posting during the week. SocialPilot specifies that publishing in the mornings on weekends (9-11 a.m.) is effective, so this is important to bear in mind.

The Best Times To Post On Instagram

Source Day Of Week Time To Post
Sprout Social Tuesday and Wednesday 9 a.m. – 1 p.m. Local
Hootsuite Wednesday 2 p.m. EST
HubSpot Saturday 6-9 p.m. Local
CoSchedule Wednesday, Friday, and Tuesday (in that order)

9 a.m. Local

Later Monday 4 a.m. Local
  • Best times to post on Instagram: 8 a.m. to 1 p.m.
  • Best day to post on Instagram: Wednesday.
  • Worst day to post on Instagram: Sunday.

From its origins as a photo-sharing platform, Instagram has evolved into one of the most popular social media networks in the world – and an indispensable marketing tool.

With billions of users – 90% of whom are following at least one business – Instagram has become a powerful engine for ecommerce, brand awareness, and community-building.

As a leader in the social media space, Instagram constantly provides new formats and features for users to try out – from Reels to Stories, user quizzes and polls, and more.

We consulted a handful of sources to determine the top posting times for Instagram and came away with a mixed bag of answers.

Wednesday appears to take the cake as the most consistently recommended day, with CoSchedule, Sprout Social, and Hootsuite all suggesting it.

Generally, our sources seem to lean towards weekdays as being strongest for Instagram engagement – with the exception of HubSpot, which recommends Saturday.

In terms of timing, the morning to midday hours seem to be your best bet, especially around 8 a.m. through 1 p.m. HubSpot and Later provide times that significantly differ from other sources, which suggests that effectiveness can vary based on audience and content type.

The Best Times To Post On TikTok

Source Day Of Week Time To Post
Sprout Social Tuesday and Wednesday 2-6 p.m. Local
Hootsuite Thursday 10 p.m. EST
SocialPilot Tuesday and Thursday 2 a.m. and 9 a.m. EST
HubSpot Friday 6-9 p.m. Local
  • Best time to post on TikTok: Inconclusive.
  • Best day to post on TikTok: Tuesday.
  • Worst day to post on TikTok: Inconclusive.

While it’s a relative newcomer to the fold, TikTok has quickly become one of the most beloved social platforms worldwide – and is drawing brands in increasing numbers.

With the average user spending nearly 54 minutes on the app daily, it’s hard to beat the hold that TikTok has among audiences. By optimizing your presence there, you can stand to generate some impressive returns on your marketing efforts.

So, what’s the best time to post on TikTok? The jury is out on this one – and it may take extra experimentation on your part to find the sweet spot that engages your audience.

Tuesday seems to rise to the top among the sources we consulted, with Wednesdays and Thursdays also getting recommendations. Generally speaking, it looks like midweek is a good time to test out your TikTok content, but there are plenty of discrepancies in the data.

While HubSpot named Friday as the best day, it also highlighted that Saturdays and Thursdays are strong for B2B brands, and Saturdays and Sundays work well for B2C brands.

Sprout Social found Sunday to be the worst performing day, while Monday and Tuesday are the worst days, according to HubSpot.

We also find a mix of recommended time slots, from early morning to mid-afternoon and also evening being suggested.

The Best Times To Post On Snapchat

Snapchat, the pioneer of ephemeral social media content (and the inspiration behind Instagram Stories), provides unique opportunities to reach younger demographics.

It differs from other platforms in how it works and the type of content that engages there. Snapchat typically centers around showcasing real-time experiences and authentic behind-the-scenes content versus polished marketing content.

This makes Snapchat an advantageous yet often underutilized tool in digital marketing. But it should not be overlooked, especially given that the platform continues to innovate.

While we have seen 10 a.m. – 1 p.m. cited as the best times to post on Snapchat in various secondary sources around the internet, we have found no recent original data to either confirm or refute this.

Given this, we would recommend testing out different times and days based on the behaviors and lifestyles of your target audience and then iterating based on your results (which is what you should be doing across the board, regardless!)

The Best Times To Post On Pinterest

Source Day Of Week Time To Post
Sprout Social Wednesday to Friday 1-3 p.m. Local
HubSpot Friday 3-6 p.m. Local
CoSchedule Sunday, Monday, and Tuesday (in that order)

8 p.m. Local

  • Best times to post on Pinterest: 3-6 p.m.
  • Best day to post on Pinterest: Friday.
  • Worst day to post on Pinterest: Sunday.

Pinterest, once thought of as a simple inspiration board-style site, has today become a crucial player in the world of ecommerce.

Businesses can leverage Pinterest to showcase their products and drive conversions, but also to grow and expand brand awareness and sentiment.

Success on Pinterest can be found through sharing brand-specific imagery, optimizing for mobile, and appealing to your audience’s sense of aspiration and inspiration.

Friday, alongside other weekdays, is consistently mentioned as a strong day among our sources. On the other end, Sunday is commonly named as the least effective day for posting on Pinterest.

When it comes to the most fruitful posting time on the platform, it appears that the late afternoon to early evening, specifically around 3-6 p.m., is optimal for best engagement.

The Best Times To Post On X (Twitter)

Source Day Of Week Time To Post
Sprout Social Tuesday to Thursday 9 a.m. – 2 p.m. Local
Hootsuite Monday and Wednesday 10 a.m. – 1 p.m. EST
CoSchedule Wednesday, Tuesday, and Friday (in that order) 9 a.m. Local
HubSpot Friday and Wednesday (in that order) 9 a.m. to 12 p.m. Local
  • Best times to post on X (Twitter): 9 a.m. to 12 p.m.
  • Best days to post on X (Twitter): Wednesday and Friday.
  • Worst day to post on X (Twitter): Sunday.

X (formerly known as Twitter) has long been a place for marketers to connect and engage with their audience, join trending conversations, and build community.

The real-time nature of X (Twitter) differentiates it from other social platforms and allows for spur-of-the-moment and reactionary marketing moves. And with CEO Elon Musk’s big plans for the app, it’s undoubtedly a space to watch.

When looking for the top days to post among the sources we consulted, Wednesday and Friday are most often mentioned – with Sprout Social specifying Tuesday through Thursday.

Hootsuite nominates Monday and Wednesday as the top days, proving that weekdays reign supreme on X (Twitter).

Like many other platforms, Sunday seems to be the least effective day for post-engagement.

Looking for the best times to post on X (Twitter)?

Late morning, from around 9 a.m. to noon, seems to be the most recommended time – though, as always, this will differ based on your specific audience and the type of content you are sharing.

We always recommend testing and experimenting to see what works for you.

The Best Times To Post On LinkedIn

Source Day Of Week Time To Post
Sprout Social Tuesday to Thursday 10 a.m. – 12 p.m. Local
Hootsuite Monday 4 p.m. EST
CoSchedule Thursday, Tuesday, and Wednesday (in that order) 10 a.m. Local
HubSpot Monday, Wednesday, and Tuesday (in that order) 9 a.m. – 12 p.m. Local
  • Best times to post on LinkedIn: 10 a.m. – 3 p.m.
  • Best days to post on LinkedIn: Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday.
  • Worst days to post on LinkedIn: Weekends.

Though first and foremost a platform for professionals, LinkedIn has picked up steam in recent years, becoming a hub of engagement and a frontrunner among social media networks.

It’s also an essential tool for businesses that want to reach business executives and decision-makers, as well as potential candidates.

Done right, LinkedIn content can go a long way in building a public perception of your brand and providing deep value to your target audience.

Digging into the data, we can see that weekdays provide the biggest opportunities for engagement on LinkedIn, which is hardly surprising. Tuesdays through Thursdays are often mentioned as the top days, with Mondays also highlighted by Hootsuite and HubSpot.

All of our sources agree that weekends are less effective for LinkedIn posts.

If you’re searching for the right time, you might try your hand at posting from late morning to mid-afternoon, based on what these sources discovered.

But (and not to sound like a broken record) your results may differ based on your brand, niche, target audience, and content.

What Is The Best Time For You To Post On Social Media?

Finding the best times to post on social media requires a delicate blend of testing, experimentation, and personal analytics.

And it never hurts to start your journey with industry insights like the ones we’ve covered in this article.

By aligning your content strategy with your target audience and trying out different posting strategies – taking into account these recommended time slots – you will be able to determine what works best for you and significantly enhance your social media presence and engagement.

Sources of data, November 2023.

All data above was taken from the sources below.

Each platform conducted its own extensive research, analyzing millions of posts across various social networks to find the times when users are most engaged.


  • Sprout Social analyzed nearly 2 billion engagements across 400,000 social profiles.
  • Hootsuite analyzed thousands of social media posts using an audience of 8 million followers. For its Instagram updates, it analyzed over 30,000 posts.
  • CoSchedule analyzed more than 35 million posts from more than 30,000 organizations.
  • SocialPilot studied over 50,000 YouTube accounts and over 50,000 TikTok accounts to compile its data. 
  • Later analyzed over 11 million Instagram posts.
  • HubSpot surveyed over 1,000 global marketers to discern the best times to post on social media. For its Instagram-specific data, it partnered with Mention to analyze over 37 million posts.

More resources: 

Featured Image: Kaspars Grinvalds/Shutterstock

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