There have been a number of posts recently that have gotten a lot of attention about timing in social media. Like great orators of old, or famous lover through the ages, top tweeters do possess an innate sense for when to deliver the goods.
Mashable ran a story citing research that showed tweets and status updates were more likely to get traction among a wide audience on Thursday and Friday, when folks are checking out of work and looking for a distraction.
“The idea that you can tell people, this is a good time to tweet, is just wrong,” says Frank Speiser, CEO of Socialflow. “Trying to predict the best time to engage users is a losing battle, because its all about relating to the real time conversation.”
What users really need, and what Socialflow is selling, is a deep understanding of the windows that do open, when a tidal mass of users are primed to pay attention to a certain topic. “One second people may be talking about Obama, or a sports game, but then the tsunami hits in Japan, and everything turns to a discussion of nuclear energy and policy.”
With full access to the Twitter and bit.ly firehose, Socialflow is seeing a massive stream of information at any given moment. “The issues may be big, but the best way to engage people is still to talk to them as if you were engaging a small group.”
So while a user might care about Def Leppard playing in Long Island in July, and who doesn’t really, when someone comes on TV and announces a massive spike in layoffs, they probably care a lot less and that news may even impact their inclination to be engaged by paying for a concert.