You may have seen the name “Jack Leonard” on one of the many social media accounts that attracts hundreds of thousands of followers. Or maybe, Leonard is the kid who sits next to you in class during school week.  On Vine, he has over a million followers, on Twitter, one hundred and one thousand, Instagram, over fifty thousand. Some would say he’s well known on the web.

The Cigar recently sat down with Leonard in the URI library to ask him about his rise to stardom in the social media world.

Courtesy of: Jack Leonard
Courtesy of: Jack Leonard

The Cigar: How did you become such a presence on social media?

Jack Leonard: In high school I created a twitter account and would post jokes for fun. Within two months I had 50,000 followers which I never thought would happen. I really had no intention of this becoming a business.

Leonard is a sophomore at the University of Rhode Island studying finance. However, most of his business and marketing background did not come from formal education.

TC: How did you learn to be so successful with marketing?

JL: I’ve had to learn as I’ve gained more of a presence on social media. I’m constantly figuring out how to promote myself and use the connections I have to create more opportunities. There’s a lot of different strategies to promote yourself. I often use one social media to cross promote to another.

Leonard is currently enrolled in a full course load yet his social media has new content every day.

TC: How do you manage to do both your school work and produce content for Twitter, Instagram, etc.?

JL: It’s a lot of work. I would put in twelve hour days during the summer to create content for all of my accounts. During school breaks it’s the same thing. I’m at my double monitor computer all day just to get ahead (for the future). There’s a ton of behind the scenes work.

TC: So there’s a financial benefit to doing all of this right?

JL: I’ve been able to market myself as a model for clothing companies so I am able to advertise their products on my feeds. The money I do make, I put back into growing myself as a business and reaching out to more people.

In his spare time, Leonard currently models for the brand, Kiel James Patrick, a company most popular for their nautical themed bracelets.

Courtesy of: Jack Leonard
Courtesy of: Jack Leonard

TC: These days it seems like there is always a new social media app or website. Platforms come in and go out of style on a monthly and yearly basis.  How do you keep up?

JL: I have a good ability to adapt to technological platforms which has helped me along the way. Things are always changing and you need to stay ahead of everyone else. If you’re not producing quality content on the right platform it’s hard to be successful.

TC: What are Jack Leonard’s future goals?

JL: I want to spend more time developing my Instagram following and start using Snapchat as a marketing tool. In the end, I hope to grow my own image to the point where I can just market myself.

If you want to follow Jack, you can find him on Twitter/ Instagram/Tumblr with the handle: JackLeonard on Vine with: Minions and Snapchat with: JackLnrd