SYBAW means Smart, Young and Bored At Work. It also means a huge opportunity for content marketers.
I first heard about SYBAWs when chatting with a former Fast Company editor about the best times to publish content. In explaining why Tuesday and Wednesday were the sweet spot — something an ex-Engadget editor corroborates — an offhand comment was made about playing into SYBAW behavior.
A quick Google search yielded results for the 2013 news:rewired conference in London, where Quartz’s Jay Lauf made mention of SYBAWs in his keynote:
“I would pose [they’re] the most sophisticated, and therefore the most important, media consumer the planet has ever known…I don’t say that hyperbolically, I mean it.
These smart people — who are early on in their careers, who are mildly underemployed — they’re sitting all day in front of computer screens, they’re at their desks looking at their computer screens, they’re carrying handhelds all the time.
What they’re doing is building considerable reputation and social capital by being in the know. Knowing what’s going on all the time and spreading that word.
These are the people driving the Internet today in terms of traffic. Now we can scoff at this, we can laugh at who they are, we can say ‘that’s not my target audience, I don’t care’ but I think you ignore them at your own peril.”
Citing the SYBAW m.o. of really only working on Mondays and Fridays, the Fast Company editor I spoke with said the middle of the week is ripe for content consumption. So if you’re looking to take advantage of this audience’s eagerness to read (and share), he passed along three tips:
- Publish on Tuesdays, as most people are a day or two behind on social media
- Schedule your strongest content to go live between 11 a.m. and 12 p.m. EST
- Don’t publish earlier as you’ll miss those on the West Coast (wait for their morning commute)
Given the insatiable appetite of SYBAWs, a smart strategy would be to complement paid efforts by promoting your content across social media at the most opportunistic times. Compiling data from news outlets like The Huffington Post and services like Buffer, Co.Schedule created this exhaustive report on when to share socially. My highlights for the TL;DR set:
When to post on Facebook
Wednesday, 3 p.m. EST
Thursday and Friday, 1 – 4 p.m. EST
Saturday and Sunday, 12 – 1 p.m. EST
When to post on Twitter
Wednesday, noon or 5 – 6 p.m. EST
Weekdays, 12 – 3 p.m. or 5 p.m. EST
When to post on LinkedIn
Tuesday, 10 – 11 a.m.
Tuesday – Thursday, noon or 5 – 6 p.m. EST
When to post on Pinterest
Daily, 2 – 4 p.m.
Friday, 3 p.m.
Saturday, 8 – 11 p.m.
When to post on Instagram
Monday – Thursday, any time but 3 – 4 p.m. EST
Daily, after 9 p.m. (video only)
Based on the success he saw, a former VentureBeat writer I spoke to encourages counterprogramming. Despite evidence to the contrary, he said publishing early on Saturday mornings and promoting throughout the weekend can pay off. It’s also worth experimenting weekdays at these times:
- 2 – 3 a.m. (Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest)
- 6 – 7 a.m. (Twitter)
- 7:30 – 8:30 a.m. (LinkedIn)
- After 9 p.m. (Twitter, Instagram)
Thanks to SYBAWs, interest in consuming content of all stripes is incredibly high. If you’re not capitalizing on this, now’s the time — particularly on Wednesday, Thursday and Friday afternoons.
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