All over the globe, 1 billion people use Instagram every month. Six in 10 users login at least once a day, and 200 million visits at least one business profile a day. About 95 million photos and videos shared every day on the platform; with all the facts, everyone knows they have their audience on Instagram but, the question is, how do you reach them? How do you withhold the attention of the users? The only answer to this is by reaching the right audience at the right time. Since the last few years, Instagram has changed its algorithm. Instagram gives top preference to user-friendly posts made by friends and family rather than business posts. If you want people to see your post, businesses have the ace the Instagram game. To ace the game, you have to be well researched about the best time to post but remember the coexistence of time when most people upload their Instagram content does not play a crucial role.
In this blog, we will study the different research related to the best time to post on Instagram UK, about the number 1 priority on Instagram, talk about content and captivating content, and talk about tips to increase engagement.
Table of Contents
1. Particular Time To Post On Instagram UK
2. Your number 1 priority on Instagram
3. How to increase your engagement on Instagram
4. Eight ways to get users engaged with your content
5. How to find the best time for posting on Instagram
6. Posting Time Experiment
Particular Time To Post On Instagram UK
There is no particular time to make your Instagram posts. There are too many fluctuations. After going through various researches, we have concluded the “best” time for your post.
Over the last couple of years, there have been various researches to determine the best time to post on Instagram. Every research differs from each other, but some clear trends enlighten us.
Various studies suggest the following times as the best:
- HubSpot – between 2 PM and 3 PM – Thursday the best day
- Sprout Social – Wednesday at 11 AM and Friday at 10–11 AM
- Expert Voice – Wednesday: 11 AM and 3 PM (doesn’t specify time zone)
- Later – 9 AM-11 AM EST
Considering the fluctuations, we would recommend you to look at a wider window of times, rather than focussing on a particular time. Don’t forget to post more than once a week if you want to succeed.
EST (Eastern Standard Time) is the time zone used on the east coast of North America and some of Central America and the Caribbean. It’s five hours behind UK time (GMT).
But don’t add those five hours—swap EST for GMT.
So, when Later says that 5 am EST is a great time to post on a Monday, post at 5 is GMT.
platforms, Times marked shaded with yellow, offer exceptionally high levels of engagement.
2. Sprout Social
Hubspot, Sprout Social, Later crunched their customers to find the best time to post on Instagram. And its overall finding was similar.
The best day to post is Wednesday. The best time to post is at 11 am.
The next best time to post, according to the study, is Friday between 10 am and 11 am.
Sprout Social also looked at what days and times get the most consistent engagement and where it tends to drop off.
- Most consistent engagement: Tuesday through Friday, 10 am–3 pm
- Worst day: Sunday receives the least amount of engagement on Instagram
- Lowest engagement: Occurs during late night and early morning from 11 pm – 3 am
In a study of its own, HubSpot’s data looked at the best times to post for specific sector:
Sprout Social looks at a few additional sectors:
Your No. 1 priority on Instagram
Engagement is your no.1 precedence on Instagram. Every sector is different, but they all have a common goal on Instagram to build more and more engagement on their Instagram account. Earlier, likes and shares concluded the engagement on Instagram, but with the changing algorithms, people have begun to add views, shares, and direct messages. You can further add this engagement of Instagram spin-offs, such as Instagram Stories and IGTV. As of now, it would be better to conclude that engagement includes all kinds of interactions between your social followers/customers and your business on Instagram.
HubSpot data shows the startling fact that the average Instagram post receives 5,963 likes. However, the number of likes is the mean – heavily influenced by viral posts shared by influencers. HubSpot found that the median number of likes received on an Instagram post is much nearer 100, meaning that half of all Instagram posts receive fewer than 100 likes.
Influencers similarly inflate the mean figures for comments on an Instagram post. When you include these mega-posts, the average Instagram post earns 100 comments (up to 150 comments for video posts). If you remove viral videos from the calculations, the median number of comments per video post falls to 3.
How to increase your engagement?
To increase your engagement, you need to gratify the Instagram algorithm.
Instagram Algorithms are a mystery to most, but thanks to a presentation given back in 2018. In it, product lead Julian Gutman explained the three main attributes Instagram uses to decide what users see in their feed:
1. Interest – Users’ interest plays an important role. Posts that are alike in content to posts a user has already set about in the past will feature more notably in the feed. For instance, if you recently liked and commented on Puma’s post, which talked about their new shoe collection, Instagram may show you a similar post about the shoes on the woodland or Nike.
2. Recency – A new post is given priority over the old post. So recent posts always have an advantage. The recency attribute shows why posting at the right time is essential. Millions of pictures and videos are uploaded every day, in case you post when your audience is not checking their Instagram, so it would likely be lost somewhere by the time they look into Instagram.
3. Relationship – Posts from someone a user has engaged with many times will feature notably in the feed, such as some friends whom the user has spoken too often. Of this relationship, attribute, learning, and understanding which kind of content your audience prefers will help you serve their interests, further helping you increase engagement and strengthen relationships.
Ways to get users engaged with your content
With gratifying the algorithm in mind, here are eight ways to get users engaged with your content:
Consistency doesn’t mean posting eight times a time. By consistency, I mean posting 1-2 times a day. If you chose to put one post, let that be one post every day, the same as two posts. It would help if you worked on adding value to your consistency. Provide fresh and different content to your audience every day.
For instance, if you post in a specific manner and then suddenly change it, it may impact you negatively. You may lose followers and generate less engagement. This is, of course, until Instagram’s algorithm is picking up the new pattern. Rather than confusing the algorithm, be consistent.
Thumb rule: Understand and post in a manner that works for you and stick to it consistently.
2. Munificent use of the hashtag
Hashtags help social media to classify your content and further make it easily visible. As per Instagram, if a user searches for or clicks a particular hashtag, they’ll get options of various pages that feature all the posts tagged with that hashtag. So if you use them consistently and adequately, hashtags can improve your engagement ability.
You can use upto 30 hashtags in a single post. So, feel free to use them munificently. But, relevancy matters. Make sure those hashtags are relevant to your post; otherwise, it can come across as spammy, which would lead to no results.
For instance, let’s say you run a fashion business and are putting out a series of posts on your fashion business’s top trends this year. Along with hashtags such as #fashiontrends2020 and #design trends, you decide to add #web design because you can see that it’s popular. While it might make your post more visible, #web design might also bring with it an audience of web designing fans that are hardly interested in fashion.
But, some Social media experts like Louise Myers, recommend using all 30 hashtags. Don’t be confused! Test what works better with your target audience. .
3. Use Instagram Stories
Five hundred million people use Instagram Stories every day, and businesses post one-third of the most-viewed Stories. Instagram Stories can be a combination of videos, pictures, sharing news, showing and promoting your new products or services, or just giving an insight into what goes on behind-the-scenes in your business.
Since these stories disappear after 24 hours, they make the perfect complement to your daily posts. Make the stories inquisitive and relatable, thus giving people a reason to engage with you.
Thumb rule: Stories provide you with various options like stickers, which can be used to ask questions, take feedback, starting a countdown, and so on. Keep your audience engaged and connected/
4. Engage with your followers
Engaging with your audience is very important. Since your followers give their time to you, you owe them back. Like some of their posts, revert to their comment, and commenting on their posts makes them feel worth it. They get a feeling that probably not an agency, but a real person is behind that account, and they also feel you take accountability for their feedback.
Thumb rule: The more you interact with your followers, the more loyal they become. You can reply to all 100 comments that you may receive but make it a point to reply to the first 10-20 comments. This will help you engage on a personal level with them. Show some love on their pages as well.
5. Be bona-fide
It is good to be amazingly authentic and original. According to a survey by the content marketing platform Stackla, 90% of consumers say that authenticity is important when deciding which brands they like and support. Another study by Bonfire Marketing shows that 91% of customers want the brands they follow to be genuine in their social media posts.
Engaging with your audience is also considered as one way to show your genuinity. Post imperfect pictures without filters and editing, shoe them not so working behind the scene ideas, try explaining how you work, and so much more content can be made, which sounds relatable and genuine.
Take a look at the accounts of fashion influencers Courtney Trop who regularly post “imperfect” photos without filters. Have a look at some of her picture from instagram:
6. Longer captions
According to a study The average caption length on Instagram has doubled since 2016.
Instagram algorithm involves writing of posts in a simple manner and with longer captions. Longer it is, the better it is. Instagram lets you use up to 2,200 characters in a post. The average caption is 405 characters, which is around 65-70 words. But whatever you write make sure to pin up the content in the most fantastic ways.
This infographic by Later demonstrates how to do just that:
- Killer first line: Captions are pruned after 125 characters, so get in your most crucial information first. Give your audience a reason to click and read your post.
- Strong call to action: If you want to garner attention to your post, leave a comment or tag a friend. For instance, “tag a friend who’ll love this.” Or “double tap if you agree.”
- Consistent brand voice: Be consistent with your writing. Maintaining consistency, making sure writing on Instagram is in the same manner you write on every other marketing channel.
- Hashtags: Add hashtags, as explained earlier.
- Emojis and line breaks: Some people use a lot of emojis, and some don’t use them at all. Emojis add some much-needed eye-catching attention. Make sure you use them in a relevant considerate manner.
7. Keep the drive going
When you’ve got significant momentum, please keep it going by maintaining a steady stream of posts. Follow the 3 step strategy for this; I call it the P2A strategy. “Plan, Prepare, and Automate.”
- Plan: Plan your content and create a 30-day plan. Decide what time to post when and keep your creatives ready.
- Prepare: Prepare your captions in advance. Give yourself some time to think out of the box captions which attract your followers.S
- Automate: Use a social media scheduling tool such as Hootsuite to schedule your content to go out at the right time. But, unlike Twitter or Facebook, Instagram doesn’t allow third-party apps to post for you. So set up push notifications so that instagram can notify you when content is due to go out. Your only job then is to hit ”publish”.
8. Importance of Captivating Content
One of the essential facts that Hubspot can determine from the figures mentioned above is that there is hardly any point in curating content just for its sake. Captivating content has the power to captivate the attention of the users. It has the power to generate high engagement rates. The middle of the road content is barely worth creating.
You need to understand the reason you post content is for the audience. If your content is not captivating, attention-grabbing, non-informative, why would people waste their time coming back again? Not only compelling content but compelling content coexisting with the right posting time brings the results. Imagine creating exclusively unique content but posting it at the wrong time. There will be no shares, likes, or comments on it because your target audience won’t get to see it. His is even more relevant now with the current Instagram algorithm.
Key Elements To Find The Best Times to Post on Instagram
- Day of week
- Breaks in the workday
- Take advantage of time zones
- Follow your target audience
- Consistent posting
How to find the best time for posting on Instagram?
The only way to know the correct time to post on instagram is to find out when your audience is online.
Social platforms like Later, SproutSocial and Hootsuite, and others let you see your Instagram analytics to find out when your followers are most active. But each of these platforms requires you to sign up, and in some cases, they are prepaid.
But in case you are not ready to pay, there are a couple of free, easy, and manual ways to learn more about your followers:
1. Instagram insight
To get access to the Insights feature, You have to make sure that your site is set to a business account. Once it is set to a business account, go to your profile, click on the menu, and tap Insights.
Click on the Audience tab, and you’ll be shown data on the growth of your account, follower locations, age range, gender, and, crucially, follower times.
Filter times by Hours and Days to get an idea of when your followers check Instagram regularly.
2. The competition
Another way to investigate when your audience is online is by checking out the competition. Find out who’s doing well and check out their feed. You might find some clues about when is the best time to post in your industry, which may lead to bright chances that the users who like your competition’s content will like what you post.
Pick up someone from your niche, look for the posts with the most likes and comments. At the bottom of every Instagram post, you’ll see when it was posted.
To explain to you well, let me illustrate:
Let’s take one of the picture of Courtney Trop
In this post from the Country Trop account, you can see that it was posted 7 days ago.
To find the exact time, you need to click on the 3 dots and select Embed.
This will open the line of code that features the time.
As per this example the post was published on 3 september 8:35 AM PDT.
Repeat this on a few different posts and you may find that a pattern develops.
As per this example, the post was published on three September 8:35 AM PDT.
Repeat this on a few different posts, and you may find that a pattern develops.
Posting Time Experiment
Posting your posts is the beginning point. You publish your posts and track their performance by writing their engagement status.
For instance, if your research shows that your audience is online between 7 AM to 9 AM on a Wednesday, post every hour in that timeframe and track how each pose performs. If 7 AM and 8 AM posts perform better than the rest, next week focus only on those times. If it seems that the 9 AM post gets more engagement than the 7 AM post over a few weeks, then 9 AM on a Wednesday is the time for you.
It would help if you continued performing these experiments to know the exact time. Keep testing, tracking, and testing again within those windows of time each day, and you will end up concluding the time that fits with your target audience. It takes time, but results are organic and worth giving the time.
But publishing content at the decided time is only a section of the Instagram engagement to generate comments and likes from your followers. Your content needs to be captivating, engaging, informative, and fresh.
With 83% of Instagrammers using the platform to discover new products and services and 81% using it to research potential purchases, reaching your target audience at the right time provides an excellent opportunity to increase leads and drive sales.
As you can understand well enough, there is no particular best time to post on instagram. You can still use the extensive idea of popular time from different research, time experiments, competitions, insights, and amalgamate to get a great response from your followers.
Use the blog’s tips and tricks to create captivating content and derive the best time to post on instagram in the UK. To evolve, keep tracking your post insights and performing different time experiments. You’ll slowly notice the pattern emerging high tides; that is, your posts will get more engagement at times. Remember, that will be your winning tactic.
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Abhay is a Digital Marketing Guru and an accomplished entrepreneur with an experience of a decade working with various businesses varying from startups to established brands. He co-founded many companies like Logicsofts, PrintYo, CrazyRise and more. He is passionate about SEO and Online Data Analytics, which plays a vital role in any business to grow and mutate as per the data results.
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