What a Time.

Since January 1, 2016 (Yes, a New Year’s Resolution, and thanks to Jon Wheatley and his post for the inspo!), I have been post a GIF at 6:45 pm. No matter what I’m doing, where I am, or who I’m with — something will be posted. Similarly to the concept behind 1secondeveryday, I am keeping track of my year, one GIF at a time. If you want to see what I’m doing, you can watch them all here

I’m 49 days in and it’s still surprisingly going well..But..

This past week, while on the other side of the United States, in a different timezone, something felt off— I had to adjust. My 6:45 there was not the 6:45 EST I have become so accustomed too. This spurred on a stream of consciousness I know all too well.. Here it goes…

Do I post earlier? Am I to change when I post based on my timezone?

6:45 here is 8:45 there, will people see this?

Will they like it? Who is they? Does anyone ever like it?

Have I become that addicted to my social media habits? Has it consumed my 6:45 minute so much that I needed to keep to EST?

Okay, Looped. Posted. No one is seeing it.

8:48 pm EST. Check Instagram, Check Twitter, Check Facebook. Back to Tumblr

No likes.

Tomorrow I’m absolutely posting at 6:45 EST/4:45MT

The science of social timing — #TimeSci — is nothing new to the marketing and advertising world but when it comes to personal branding, do the same rules apply? Do I need to be concerned with it? Is this year in GIFS really for me.. or for..?

Honestly, it just happens- more subconsciously than if I was marketing a physical product — but in thinking of it like that, the product in this case.. is well, me.

In the industry, we are bombarded with new ways to track, analyze and optimize presence on social. We post strategically to maximize engagement, to gain followers, and to push brands until they are recognized. Social media today is the ultimate numbers game and understanding the science behind timing and its impact on performance is critical to winning.

But how far does this push for metrics go before it interrupts the raw expression, the potential collaboration, and the general sense of community that social media provides for so many of us?

The juxtaposition between the growing popularity of the study of social timing and the reality of the effects of affirmation through social media is becoming an increasing trend in our validation generation. Likes, comments, retweets, favorites, followers, friends, page views, and everything in between have become a way to measure our value — much like how a marketer would use these “vanity metrics” to decide how well their product is doing.

From now on, 6:45 pm will be wherever I am, whatever moment I am in — regardless of timezones, infographics or statistics.

And yes, I’m posting this now. What time is it?