We want to know; what is the best time to post, how often should we post, what types of content should we post – whatever it takes to exponentially grow our following, increase our impressions, foster our likes or raise our engagement.

With my former career in marketing, I spent a lot of time researching social media strategies and trends to then implement and test them in my work.

When I think back to my old job about 7-to-10 years ago, there were a lot of differences contracted against today. For example, many of the social media platforms and channels we used are now dead.

Second, a countless bevy of new sites and apps have been birthed.

Third, we didn’t even discuss mobile media technology.

My o’ my how the times have changed. What wasn’t changed, however, is that we all asked the exact same questions on how to grow our following and engagement.

Early on in my career I figured out the two most important pieces to unlocking the mystical social media code.

The first, as Kevin Kelly teaches us, is that you do not need an insanely overinflated, unless, non-convertible following. Instead, you just need a small facet of true evangelists to spread your message.

The second, and most important secret of social media, is if you want people to be interested in you, then you must first be interested and invested in them. That simple.

Social media is not a set it and forget it. It is social engagement. It must be social and it must be engaging. It is the cultivation of true relationships where you give long before you ever consider asking for anything in return.

James Patrick
IG @jpatrickphoto