Here Is an Hour-By-Hour Breakdown of When People Post on Instagram

Why your brand should consider morning posts

Instagram on Tuesday revealed that it now has 400 million monthly users, up 100 million since the beginning of this year. And those users, many of who are millennials, post 80 million photos to the social platform every day. 

So a study by Mavrck—which analyzed 1.3 million Instagram posts—should get brands' attention. It explores, among other things, the best times of day to share a message on the visual platform. 

While Mavrck didn't offer engagement data, the Boston-based company advised that marketers might get greater engagement between 6 a.m. and 12 p.m. In a nutshell, here's why: While posting volume is relatively low during those morning hours, users are still peeking at their feeds regularly on their smartphones. Therefore, they represent a sizable audience during a time when there's less competition for attention.

Here is Mavrck's hour-by-hour breakdown of what percentage of Instagram posting occurs when (all times are local to the user posting the photo):

TIME                  % OF POSTS

12 a.m.                6.17

1 a.m.                  6.06

2 a.m.                  5.37

3 a.m.                  4.34

4 a.m.                  3.25

5 a.m.                  2.23

6 a.m.                  1.54

7 a.m.                  1.16

8 a.m.                  0.91

9 a.m.                  0.93

10 a.m.                1.22

11 a.m.                1.92

12 p.m.                2.88

1 p.m.                  3.94

2 p.m.                  4.86

3 p.m.                  5.52

4 p.m.                  6.06

5 p.m.                  6.02

6 p.m.                  5.96

7 p.m.                  5.85

8 p.m.                  5.96

9 p.m.                  5.96

10 p.m.                5.85

11 p.m.                6.04

In addition, the most popular hashtags were #TBT (throwback Thursday) and #WCW (woman crush Wednesday), Mavrck found. And millennial women between 25 and 40 years old are the best "micro-influencers," the company concluded in its research, which—in addition to the larger study—examined the Instagram activities of 2,000 adult females.

Lastly, Mavrck discovered that age matters on Instagram. The social-media company determined that every extra year in age among influencers—people with thousands of followers—correlated to a 0.15 percent decrease in followers. And for each 1 percent increase in the number of users they follow, the influencers gained a 0.79 percent increase in followers in return.

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