The Science of Timing Recap: Twitter ROI

April 5, 2011

By Mike

Last week, I attended a webinar entitled “The Science of Timing,” hosted by HubSpot's Dan Zarella. The social media scientist presented research on the times that will result in maximum exposure for Twitter, Facebook and blog activity.

Throughout the presentation, Zarella kept coming back to the concept of “contra-competitive timing (CCT).” That is, time your activity so it has to face the least amount of competition as possible. The less competition your information faces, the better chance it has of getting attention. So, if you take away anything from this, remember to base your activity on contra-competitive timing, and you'll be fine.

Here are some of Zarella's tips on optimizing your Twitter presence:

  • Tweet often. Now that Twitter has established itself as a necessary social media tool, people follow a large number of profiles. You no longer run the risk of flooding their feeds.
  • Don't be afraid to Tweet links more than once. Tweet it, then re-Tweet it an hour or so later, this time with a quote instead. Tweet it again later with a different pulled quote.
  • Know your goals. If you are tweeting to build a follower base and attempting to portray yourself as a source of information, Tweet links at any time. But if you are Tweeting your own links, take breaks of an hour or so, at least. You don't want to be seen as spam.
  • The clock is not your enemy. Late in the day (2-5 p.m.) and late in the week are statistically the best time for getting re-Tweets, but there is plenty of activity 24/7. Don't be afraid to Tweet around the clock. As for links, the general click-through rate (a metric that measures the number of links opened via Tweets) does not dip significantly on the weekends. Experiment with tweeting on Saturday and Sunday. These are the times when your tweets have the least competition, and thus have a better chance of getting viewed.

Want to know your personal best time for tweeting? Visit This HubSpot site will analyze your last 1,000 Tweets, and provide a graph pinpointing the times and days you are most likely to be re-Tweeted.

Our best times for re-tweets are from 9-11 a.m., and our best day is Thursday. What's yours?

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