Instagram, like social media marketing in general, is an ever-evolving ecosystem.
And getting the best Instagram engagement depends on the industry you’re creating content for and your target audience.
Furthermore, achieving a truly effective Instagram content strategy can take some trial and error.
When creating content, it takes a lot of effort to create the best images, create engaging copy, and find the right hashtags.
So, it can be intimidating when you put all that work into a post, and all you get is five likes and a bunch of spam comments.
How can you actually improve your Instagram content strategy?
In my time as a social media manager, I’ve done many hours of research and gone through trial and error.
As a result, I’ve put together some tips and ideas on the best times to post.
This guide will give you basic information and specific post times to get higher engagement rates and connect with your target audience on Instagram.
At what time are Instagram users most active?
First – remember that many time zones make up the world. So knowing which part of the global audience you’re trying to reach is essential, because the following times hinge on their timezone.
(I’ll get into that more when discussing Instagram Insights.)
Once this is determined – Think logically about what people do on a daily basis.
Oftentimes, when people wake up, they check social media, and spend a few minutes or more scrolling through their newsfeeds or watching Instagram Reels.
Therefore, around 7-8 am can be a great time to post in the morning.
Back when people are mostly on their phones when they are taking their lunch break. Posting around 11-1pm, when people are likely to break for lunch, can help ensure that the post gets closer to the top of their feed.
Remember that since people are working from home more often now, many of these suggested times come with more flexibility.
People also tend to scroll through social media right after work or before bed.
Although this is not an important time to post most days, it is for SundayWhere the peak time is from 6-8 pm
So, generally speaking, you have these three sections of the day to send out posts: when people start their day, around lunchtime, and in the evening or before people go to bed.
The caveat here, however, is that posting times can depend on your target audience’s age, demographic, and industry.
This is especially true for evening posts, so do a little more research on your target market before becoming an evening poster.
Best times to post on Instagram
We have already discussed different world time zones; In this article, we’ll focus on the Eastern Time Zone.
You can start by using these times as an initial guide, and then adjust your posting times according to the time zone and the activity of your followers.
Another essential thing to mention is that the Instagram algorithms will focus on promoting the most recent posts, so trying to find the times when users are active is crucial.
Now, let’s break down the days and post times:
- Monday: 6 am, 11 am, 1 pm
- Tuesday: 8-10 a.m., 2 p.m
- Wednesday: 9-11 am
- Thursday: 11 am – 2 pm, 7 pm
- Friday: 10am-12pm, 2-4pm.
- Saturday: 8-11 am
- Sunday: 6-8 p.m
Posting times to avoid
Let’s get back to normal people’s routine.
Weekends tend to see lower levels of participation, but don’t totally count it out. Saturday can be a good time to post if you post at the right time.
brands that offer consumer goods Tend to see high participation evenings on Sundays.
But the consensus is that Sunday is generally the worst day to post as people decompress or prepare for the week ahead. Therefore, they usually spend less time scrolling through social media.
But, as I mentioned earlier, you can find some decent levels of participation on Sunday night.
And Mondays — oh boy, don’t we all hate Mondays?
As the days of the week go by, you’ll likely see slower engagement levels this day, as people begin their workweek routines.
Best times to post reels on Instagram?
Being in the age of TikTok means that video-based content is on the rise.
If you want to engage your followers with Instagram Reels, try to post while you’re at it These times:
- Monday: 6 am, 10 am, 10 pm
- Tuesday: 2 am, 4 am, 9 am
- Wednesday: 7am, 8am, 11pm
- Thursday: 9 am, 12 am, 7 pm
- Friday: 5 am, 1 pm, 3 pm
- Saturday: 11am, 7pm, 8pm
- Sunday: 7 am, 8 am, 4 pm
There is also a suggestion from Hootsuite Posted Monday through Thursday from 9 a.m. to 12 p.m
As you mentioned, this can take trial and error – and depends on your industry and target market.
How often should you post?
This depends on two factors.
First, do you have enough product photos, content, and ideas to post a few times a day or week?
The goal here is to post consistently; Don’t ghost your followers, or they will lose interest and unfollow you.
On the other hand, don’t put content out there in order to post regularly. Instead, spend some time implementing a thoughtful content strategy based on the customer journey.
This may take more time on the front end but will leave you with less jitters and headaches as the weeks go by.
This way, you can spend more time managing social media and interacting with followers and less time worrying about getting enough content out there.
If you don’t have a lot of post ideas, try posting three times a week.
Then you can adjust after a month or so to see how the posting schedule works for you and the brand.
How do you find the best times to post?
While I’m laying a foundation for when to go live, it’s time to focus on some tactics for knowing when your target audience is online.
First things first, seeing you on Instagram.
If the account is not set up this way, you can easily click on the previous links to set up the account.
Once you’ve built up to 100 followers or more, you’ll be able to see your demographics – including the age, gender, and location of your followers.
Instagram Insights also gives you the ability to analyze high performing posts.
Then you can ask yourself, what worked here?
Was it a high quality image? Was it another time? Maybe the copy and hashtag? Or is it a combination of all of those?
This way, you can create similar posts in the future.
It’s also important to note that some pieces of content don’t perform well, while others do.
Analyzing your content and post times together will make it easier to see what works well and why.
Use different tools
If you post regularly on Facebook, you can also use Meta Business suite To schedule and analyze posts across both platforms in one place.
Using a content management platform or an Instagram Insights analysis will allow you to easily adjust post times to your audience’s time zones and tailor your content to your audience.
Or, if you’re not attracting the right audience, you can use Insights to change your strategy.
Check competitors’ content
Another thing you can do is check your competitors’ content. For example, does their post on Tuesday at 2pm work well, or would it have worked better at another time?
Doing so can also help inspire you for future topics you might want to bring up.
Instagram content strategy
Now that you have all the tips for getting your post time right, it’s time to start creating or adjusting your Instagram content strategy.
This process needs to be flexible and evolving, so patience is key.
The important thing is to stay consistent. Post regularly and check back often to see how your posts are doing.
Over time, the more content you have, the more insightful you will be in analyzing your Instagram posting strategy. Then, you can change your content strategy based on your systematic analysis.
Ultimately, you and the brand must define what success looks like.
Maybe there will be more likes, comments, followers or general brand awareness.
The last thing to remember when creating your content strategy is holidays.
Does the brand want to post in those days, promote it, or avoid it altogether?
As you can see, it can take a while to figure out the best times to post.
But once you do, you will be able to create an effective Instagram content strategy that meets brand goals.
While post times are an important part of overall engagement, you still need to select the correct hashtags, visuals, and copy for your posts — and pay attention to boosted posts, as this can affect how your visibility is perceived.
Ultimately, you must balance all of these variables to grow your follower base and continually increase engagement.
- 7 Tips for More Engagement, and Better Performance in Your Instagram Carousel Posts
- How to measure the performance of Instagram Reels
- Social Media Marketing: A Complete Strategy Guide
Featured image: Kaspars Grinvalds / Shutterstock