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Today, we're going to be talking about podcasting for your business, how to get started. What goes into each episode as far as production and promotion goes and ultimately how to profit from all of your hard work. So today, What I'm looking to cover in the next 30 minutes or so includes the prelaunch and everything you need to do before recording your first episode, the planning, the setup, the equipment, and more, and to talk about the launch itself.
Um, I'm going to share with you the production checklist that I go through for every single episode. I'm going to talk about how to promote your podcast and each episode individually, and how to make money off of your podcast. So for those of you who don't know me, my name is rich Brooks and I am the president of flight new media.
We're a digital agency located in Portland, Maine. That means that we design and build WordPress websites for our clients. And then we help them get found. Okay. Google through search engine optimization and local SEO, uh, through Google ads, ads, and we help them build a following using email marketing, social media, social ads, and a whole lot more.
We basically put them in front of their ideal customers. I'm also the founder of the agents of change in annual conference and a weekly podcast. That's all about helping you reach your ideal customers who search social and mobile marketing. I'm the tech guru on two Oh seven, which is the evening news program for the NBC affiliates here in Maine.
I wrote a book called the lead machine, the small business guy to digital marketing, which you can buy off of him. Or if you have a Kindle, you can download it. In fact, if you have Kindle unlimited, it's actually free. So go and grab it. And most recently I started fast forward, main a program. I cohost a, which is a podcast and a weekly podcast and in person and these days, virtual events for growing main business.
So I've got two podcasts going on right now. Now a few caveats for today's presentation. First of all, I'm speaking from personal experience here, I'm not here to pitch podcasting or pitch you on flights, podcasting, or marketing services. I just want to share how I'm using podcasting to grow our business.
There's a lot of technical information that goes into podcasting. And often the first question people ask me is what Mike, should I use? What software is best. That's kind of like buying a car without knowing what you're going to use it for. I'm going to share what I use, but I'm also going to send over a sheet of my sound editors, wishlist.
I'm actually going to be following up today's webinar with a lot of downloads for you that are just a little bit too in the weeds to share in the middle of a webinar. And this is for people. This is not rather for people want to be professional podcasters. This webinar is for owners, marketers, and entrepreneurs who have something to share and are looking for a platform to do that on.
And are looking to grow their business. If this was a webinar on YouTube, we'd be talking about how to use YouTube to grow your business, not how to become a YouTuber. So with that being said, let's jump in. So why should you start a podcast for your business after all? It takes a lot of work and time. And although, I guess listenership is growing, it's still small compared to other content marketing audiences.
Well, a podcast will help you establish credibility. You can position yourself as an industry expert or leader through your podcast. Even with a small listener base, you can build affinity with your listeners. You are literally inside their head. As they drive to work, mow the lawn or work out. I would people come up to me at conferences whom I never met and they feel like they know me intimately.
Podcasting is great for networking people who might not give you the time of day, we'll go out of their way to talk to you. You put a mic and an audience in front of them. It's great for learning. If you're a personal journey for learning and really, I suggest we should all be more curious about our business and our industry.
You can learn a ton from your guests and you in your research and putting together your episodes. Whenever I want to learn about a new topic like chatbots or AI, I just find an expert to interview on one of my podcasts. Lead generation and monetization. This is a webinar on podcasting for business after all.
I want to make sure how, you know, you can make money off that, but more on that later. So as I mentioned earlier, the tech side of things is not nearly as important as the strategy component. So let's start with the strategy. What's your why? Podcasting is an investment with a smaller audience than say blog, readers or YouTube visitors.
So you really want to understand why you're doing it. And the previous slide I gave, some of the reasons you might be interested in podcasting. The second thing you really want to hone in on is what's your topic? How would you describe it in a sentence or two at a cocktail party? Who's your audience. Who are you trying to reach with your podcast?
And lastly, what are they looking for? Why would they listen to your podcast? What are they hoping to learn that they don't know now that they would after 20, 30 or 40 minutes of listening to one of your episodes? So the first thing is figuring out that strategy. And after that start figuring out some of the tactics.
One thing you might want to think about is what's the format for your show? Is it going to be just you or are you going to have guests and you don't have to decide one thing or the other, most of my episodes are with guests, but we do have occasional episodes where it's just me sharing my thoughts on a given topic.
Are you going to have intros and outros? What is the flow of your show going to be like. You should also research what else is out there? Podcasts stats are pretty hard to come by, but you can go to Apple podcasts or Spotify and see who's at the top of the chart. And, you know, when I first started my very first podcast, what I did is I didn't just listen to business podcasts.
I listened to the podcasts that were the top of every single category, because when I started listening to romance, A blog, a podcast and history podcasts. I got ideas that were popular in those genres that weren't necessarily being used in business podcast. So I got new ideas and it felt fresh in the business environment.
You also want to think about frequency for your show? The typical podcast is once a week, but there are a lot of people out there who do daily shows. Here's something to keep in mind. Podcasting is time consuming. So know what you're getting into. The people who do daily shows are often people who are really in that professional podcast to podcaster.
Zone. So I often spend one to two hours on each episode and then my team probably adds another four to six hours between the transcripts editing production and promotion of each individual show. Doing a daily show is going to take up basically a full day to get there. Once you've got all that done.
It's time to start really thinking about the branding. I mean, that's probably something you should be thinking about all along, but you need your show to stay and out against dozens. If not hundreds of competitors, plus all the other distractions in podcasting directories like Apple podcasts and Spotify, a strong brand can really help you here.
First off, what are you going to call your show is going to be based on your name, your brand, your industry. There's a little bit of SEO that goes into podcasting. It not a lot, but there is some both in terms of getting found when people are doing searches, when they're at Apple podcasts or Spotify, but also they might be using Google.
So, you know, making sure that you've got, you know, some keywords in your title could help you get found. What's your tagline. What's a quick way of describing your podcast for my fast forward main podcast. It's the podcast for growing main businesses for agents of change, it's reach more of your ideal customers through search social and mobile marketing.
Your tagline should be able to quickly and just a few words or half a sentence, get across the point of what your podcast is doing and why it exists. Don't underestimate artwork you should create or have created for you. An image that's 3000 by 3000 pixels. That's the size of the podcasting cover art.
As you can see here for the agents of change, uh, it, even though it's 3000 by 3000 pixels, you can't make it too busy because it has to scale down and look good and legible at a fraction of that size on a phone. And remember this is auditory experience. So audio is a big part of the branding. Audio can include music, voiceovers and sound effects.
There are plenty of royalty free music sites out there. I use audio jungle.net. Nope, just as you're trying to find the right music. Think about the vibe of your show before. Or the agents of change was called the agents of change. It was called the marketing agents. And at that point I did a search at one of these royalty free music sites on Indiana Jones and the Raiders of arc.
And then I found like music, music that was in that style. And I chose one of those songs for the, for the marketing agents podcast. When I rebranded to agents of change, I went back to audio jungle and I searched on mission impossible and spine music to find the right vibe for the agents of change. Uh, for voiceovers, I think about, are you going to do them yourself or are you going to hire someone?
There are professional voiceover actors, and then there's also Fiverr. If you're just getting started or you could do what I do and have your brother marry into a family where the patriarch did all the celebrity interviews for ABC, and then just ask him to do it for you. As far as sound effects go, you can find these also on royalty free sites.
Use them as you want for the fast forward, main podcast. We separate segments of the show with that fast forward sound effect. That was, that was me trying to do the sound anyway. Let's keep going. Alright. Hardware questions. There always comes up. Like I said, it's not really the most important question, but I know it is going to come up.
Um, strategy is more important than technology. The other challenge is that everybody has their favorite money. Here's what I use. It's the blue Yeti Mike, in that, I mean, this looks exactly like my setup. So blue Yeti mic, it's got the pop filter on top of it. The only difference between what you said I see here and what I'm using right now is that it plugs into my computer through a USB port.
And I've got a pair of earbuds, which if you're watching the video, you can see right now, which. Tucks into the bottom of them, but that's it. That's what I've used. And that's what I've used for years. And I think the sound quality is great or at least it's good enough for me. Um, however, my sound guy wants me to do more.
He's even put together a list of his favorite equipment, which includes amps and soundproofing for walls. Kind of like the things that you see in this image. And again, I'm going to share that with you in a couple of days when I put everything together for you, that's all hooked in the download packet.
Uh, the most important thing in my mind is that your mic is good enough. And that sound quality comes through. There is enough competition in podcasting, the date, these days, that even if your content is good, but your sound quality is poor. People will go elsewhere. Another option is to find a podcasting studio near you.
This is actually an interior shot of the podcasting, uh, or I'm sorry, the Portland pod, which is a podcasting studio run by our good friend, Tanner Campbell. Uh, there's Tana right there. And I'm going to share some links in that package to Tanner's business as well. Obviously, if you're not in Portland, Maine, you're going to have to find a podcast recording studio near you.
Now studios, like these are going to give you broadcast quality sound, take care of all your equipment needs all your editing, but obviously they do require an ongoing investment. But when you're done, you're going to sound as good as anything coming out of NPR. So software important component here as well.
When I was doing my own editing, I used garage band, which comes free on any Apple device. My sound guy. Who also works for me at flight who has a background in radio, he's a developer. And he also has this background in radio. So he's doing all of my editing for me. He uses audition for the podcast these days, which runs $50 a month.
And many other people like audacity, which is a free tool. So there's me. I use garage band. This is garage band that you see in front of you. Um, when it comes to recording the interview, I'm using zoom these days because everyone has it. Thanks. COVID uh, but I've used other tools before, like Zencaster and ringer, which record people locally, and then it's the cloud, but I myself have had technical issues with it.
Both of those platforms and moved away from them. I also started with call recorder and Skype, but I have found that Skype because deteriorated, deteriorated in quality over time. So I never use it anymore. I like zoom because I like seeing the faces of my guests and I can use videos, eclipse for promotion.
Although we haven't currently you did that, uh, added that to our promotion checks plus, but that's something we plan on adding in the near future. Uh, as far as scheduling my guests in my interviews, I use Calendly. There's plenty of other scheduling tools out there. I use Calendly for a lot of things I saw I was already paying for it.
Um, and so that's a good point. Zoom is free. Although flight has a paid account, but the account that I usually use is free. Um, A personal account that I use. And I can still record with that free account and the schedule Calendly. I think that's like 15 or $20 a month. It's been a while since I've set it up, but I was already paying for it.
So it pretty much feels free. Um, I have it connected automatically to my zoom. So when somebody goes and finds a time in my calendar, it automatically sends them a zoom invite it well as well, which is nice. It just takes something off my plate. And I've also set up Calendly to ask some required questions of my guests, like getting a short bio from them and getting a headshot that we can use in promotion.
The more you can do to automate this process, the easier life's gonna be. So let's talk, set up. Uh, when it comes to podcast hosting, you don't want to host your audio where you host your website. Audio is fi audio files tend to be very large and you're going to run out of space quickly. I use Libsyn, uh, but as one of the value adds that we're going to be sending you.
We're going to include a number of options in a nice sheet where you can kind of compare and contrast. I use Libsyn because it was like the one that everybody was using back in the day. It gives good stats. I feel the price is fair, but there are a lot of other options that we'll be sharing with you as well.
Whatever podcast hosts you choose during setup, you're going to be able to choose which podcast directories you want to publish to for an example, Apple podcasts, Spotify, Google play, Stitcher radio, and there are more out there as well. It's important to note that you do not own. I need to connect your podcast host to your podcast directory that first time, but you also need to set up an account at each podcast directory to make that connection.
The good news is you only have to do that once even better news is that many smaller podcast directories use the bigger ones. So, for example, when I'm listening to podcasts, I use an app called overcast, but they pull all of their podcasts from Apple podcasts. So I don't have to submit to overcast as a podcast producer as well.
You're 100% absolutely going to need a website outside of your podcast. Host. I recommend WordPress WordPress agency, but I still recommend WordPress and running each episode as an individual blog post. That way you have a home for your content, gained some SEO benefits, have a place to drive people to, to download additional resources or join your list and a whole lot more.
Plus it's a lot easier for guests to share an episode where there's a link to a webpage rather than them saying, Oh, go find it on Apple podcast or Stitcher radio, and then navigate to go find it. My particular episode. They're never going to share it. If they have to go through all those hoops. Uh, we use a plugin called blueberry to make the episodes playable within the blog post.
I'm sure there are others, but that's just what we always use. And this is a WordPress plugin that just basically allows the audio to play natively right there on that a flawed page. Okay. And I also recommend when you first get started that you record at least three episodes before you publish any, including in episode zero, where you introduce the show and what you plan to accomplish with that show.
Now this pro this habit probably originated with me because back in the day, yay. Having three episodes tripled your downloads because Apple podcasts was really the number one place. People would go to listen to podcasts and they would download up to three episodes. So if you ha, if you set up on Google, I'm sorry, if you set up on Apple podcast, you'll automatically triple your podcast downloads when somebody first subscribes to your show, which helped you get into Apple's new and noteworthy section.
Now that's a lot more difficult these days for mere mortals like you and I, but it's still good to give people multiple episodes to check out as maybe not every episode would be their cup of tea. Okay, so let's break down how each episode is going to go when you're first getting started. Well, first of all, you're going to want to find your guests.
And when you first getting started, your guest list will also often be people from your network. That's how I started out when I first got going on both of my podcasts, but you can also get guests from other related podcasts as well. Uh, either the guests or the hosts on that show will make for good guests and you can just go to Apple podcasts or Spotify and find.
Similar types of podcasts to find potential. Joel first-generation yes. Also go to Amazon and find people who have recently published books in your topic area. Authors are often looking for platforms to promote their book. And you have, you now have a platform over time. Can companies like podcast LA podcast book, and a whole host of others will start coming to you.
In fact, it's gotten so overwhelming. I get two or three pitches a day from people who want to come on the podcast or who are repping for people want to come on the podcast that when I'm pitched, I send people to a specific guest request form on the agents of change website. And I only review the ones that come in once a week and quickly decide whether or not they would be a good fit for the show.
It just saves me a lot of time. Uh, if you don't know a person, uh, and even if you do, I recommend setting up a pre-interview chat to flesh out the topic together, and then I take notes as we're talking in Evernote. However, I don't share my final questions. So the conversation feels more natural when we have it.
I know there are many popular shows that ask every guest the same questions, but that's just not my style. Once that's done. I send out that invite to book a time via Calendly and that connects to zoom. So it automatically books, someone zoom too, and it Calendly. I have scripts ready to go. They get all the information I mentioned before, such as headshots, bio and other places where we might want to promote them online, such as their LinkedIn, Twitter and Facebook accounts.
I also include some information in that Calendly form and in the followup email that goes out automatically that reminds them about certain things that are going to make them sound better, because we want them to sound as good as possible. Things like shutting off different apps on your computer. Uh, making sure you're in a quiet space, using a good mic, all those sort of things that people might not think about.
If they're not a guest very often on my agents of change podcasts. Only two or three times in the 350 plus episodes, have I had somebody where it was their first time on the podcast, but for our fast forward main plot, I guess I would say at least half of the guests have never been on a podcast before.
So just keep that in mind. Um, on my end, uh, I then take the notes that I made and I flesh them out into say 10 to 12 questions. I take their bio and turn it into an intro using a trick that I learned from Michael O'Neil of the solo preneur hour. Uh, I don't mention most bio start with like, Rich Brooks has told me this, that, and the other thing, I immediately just replace it with him or her and say, and don't mention their name until the very end, just like a TV talk show would do imagine your favorite TV talk show host.
And the last thing they say is the guest's name. I'm also not afraid to go off topic and I don't necessarily ask all the questions that I plan to ask. I just see where the conversation goes, but I always come from an area of curiosity to ask the right types of questions. And I do have some questions that I go style questions that I go back to time and time again.
When the interview happens, I check the audios and these days the videos to make sure that it's good enough quality before we get started. I've often rescheduled with the guests because they have a poor internet connection that day or something else that's going on. Then I hit record and we go, we're just off to the races, 20 to 30 minutes and we finish it up and I thank them very much for their time.
Once the interview is over, however, your work is not done. I send the audio that I get in MP3 file over to my transcriptionist, who is amazing besides just writing down what said she writes up potential titles in introductory paragraph pulls a quote that we use to lead off the show and grabs a shorter quote that will fit into a caption for social sharing costs me about 25 to $30 an episode.
But it would probably cost you a little bit more because I get the boyfriend discount. If you're looking for a transcript, I really can't say enough about her and I'll share her contact information in the, in the notes as well. The next thing is as the public, the state's gets closer. I reviewed the title, caption and polo coach.
He gave me and send over everything, including the links to the audio, to my sound guy. Uh, I have the benefit, uh, that, like I said, and one of my developers has a background in radio. So he does all the work for me. I wouldn't recommend doing the editing for yourself. If you can avoid it. It is time conservative, consuming, even if you don't have, uh, a guy who works for you as it sounded there, there are services that will we'll handle all your podcasts at EY for about 25 bucks dollars an episode, whether you're working with an internal or an external editing person, I recommend writing up exactly what you want to have with the audio.
Most of my agents of change episodes run like this. The pull quote, fades into the intro music with voiceovers fades into my standalone. Intro goes into the interview. Goes into my standalone outro, right. And then fades into the exit music with voice over. And when I first wrote this all up and said, how long I wanted the music to fade in and out all that sort of stuff, because I had a certain way I wanted to do it.
And when it's all completed, he adds whatever. Uh, called ID three tags, which are important in podcasting, just lets the podcast directories, have a little bit more information about what they should share about the episode. And then he uploads it all to Lipson and the rest, all that dissemination the publication of the podcast that all happens automatically because it was set up right the first time.
Uh, he then creates a post for the podcast on our blog, which includes the transcript, the audio and the imagery for that episode. That's right. My editor also works up all of our social imagery based on a template we created, which for agents of change boots, the guest's headshot, our AOC branding, and then caption that we caught from that person.
And then that's posted both up to the website as well as being shared on social down the road. Uh, and then I write up an email that will be sent to our email subscribers and send it over to my editor. So he has everything he needs to do everything he needs to put together. The episode. Uh, I also have written a script for my editor to send out to our guests to let them know that the show is up to thank them for their time and to include a link and the imagery that we're gonna use for the episode.
But here's what I don't do. I don't ask them to share it. That's a personal thing that I picked up from Michael. Stelzner your guests and getting paid. So they're actually doing you a favor and yeah, you're doing that one too, but they've invested. Their time to be there. And it's not good form in my opinion, to follow up a favor given by asking for another favor, but that's my call.
Doesn't need to be yours. I know a lot of podcast, a host who strongly ask you to promote their episodes and who recommend that you do the same. When it comes to promote promotion, while we do have a healthy group of subscribers for agents of change. I also want to let people know who aren't subscribed to the podcast that the new episode has dropped, because maybe this episode is something that they're interested in, even if they're not interested in subscribing to the entire podcast.
So when the podcast goes live, usually Wednesday mornings and the email that I wrote will then be sent out through MailChimp. I, it promotes the episode, topic and guests and drives people to the blog posts created. It's all, it's got links over to, uh, Apple podcasts and Spotify. We also share that episode on Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, Pinterest, and even Instagram.
We do that through our agents of change account on all those social platforms and sometimes your flight as well. And I will also share my favorite episodes, uh, through my own personal profile too. And then when we post, we make sure that we tag our guests in their companies for wider reach. It's more likely that even if they weren't planning on sharing the episode, it comes up in their LinkedIn feed.
It comes up in their Facebook feed and they share it out because it shows that they've got some social credit out there. Now just a word on the metrics for your podcasts podcast. Stats are notoriously. Vague and hard to come by and unreliable, all you can really measure is downloads. And in some cases, not even those and a download doesn't equal, listen, plenty.
We all know all of us who listen to podcasts that we download a lot more episodes than we ever listen to. Now there is a movement to get better stats, but there may be some privacy issues that will get in the way of that. Your goal should just be to steadily increase your listenership beyond downloads.
You can look to page views on your podcast, episodes and Google analytics. Uh, you can look at Dow. No it's tied to specific episodes and also take a look at social media vanity metrics who is liking, commenting and sharing. Every time you share a new episode, that's gone up. Sponsors are only going to care about your downloads, however, which puts daily podcasts at advantage because they get seven times the downloads for the same size audience as a weekly podcast.
Speaking of sponsorships and, and money in general, let's, let's talk about the money. How do you get it? Well, many people do go after sponsorships. I went back and forth on this for years, but ultimately that adding all those commercials in my podcast for a couple of hundred dollars a month, when I worked out our listenership, it just wasn't worth it.
My audience wouldn't want to listen to a 30, 60 and another 32nd commercial in every state single episode. And the payoff just wasn't there for me. Many podcasters sell other people's products on their podcasts through affiliate sales. This is a little different from sponsorships as you don't have an official relationship with the company you're promoting, but you get a cut of all the sales.
When people buy the product, using your affiliate code. Other podcasters use their podcast to sell online courses in book books. And this can be very lucrative depending on your audience and the profit margin on your courses. Lead gen is where I ended up. And I think that's where a lot of businesses will end up.
We're doing this as a way of promoting the business, using their podcast for their business and not necessarily be, become professional podcasters right after I decided not to move forward with sponsorships. One of my listeners posted an episode on Twitter stating that he needed help with a particular issue.
I reached out to him. We started a conversation and we got the business that it's a business from that one podcast ended up being worth about $40,000 a year to my company. Way, way more than I ever would have gotten from sponsorships. And now I could remain ad free. I've got another jobs from the podcast as well, both directly and indirectly.
And what's amazing is it puts you in front of an audience that would have never heard of your company. Otherwise, the person who ended up reaching out to me or, or tweeting that day, they never would have heard of flight new media. They weren't in our area, probably never would have found our blogs, but they found that podcast.
A few additional thoughts that I was putting, you know, as I was putting this together, didn't really fall into any category, whether or not you've got a podcast now or not consider being a guest on other podcasts. It's a great way to get in front of your ideal customers. Get links back to your site and establish your credibility.
Include calls to action in all of your episodes, give you the listeners something to do, such as subscribe to the podcast, download something, buy your book, attend your agents of change conference, whatever it is. It's difficult to move someone from your podcast, especially if they're driving or on the treadmill to a website, but it's not impossible.
You're unlikely to make a lot of money out of the gate when it comes to podcasting. It's not for a quick buck. The story I told you about landing that client was probably at least 50 episodes in or more. That's basically a year of work before I got the first opportunity to even close a sale, but it was well worth it.
And lastly be yourself. It's difficult to just be yourself. Sometimes you want to adopt a professional voice. You want to emulate the energy of your favorite. Pod-casters you want to do something like a lightning round because everyone else is doing it. Trust me. Don't no one else is being you. And that's your differentiator.
So some takeaways that I want you to think about as we wrap up today, and before I take your questions today, Strategy before technology. That's really, my biggest takeaway. Podcasting can be time-intensive doesn't offer the same SEO benefits of other content marketing. And sometimes it feels like you're talking to an empty room, even when you aren't know why you're doing this, who you're serving and what you're delivering before you ever hit recording.
Also don't go it alone. Yes. That is how I started doing it all by myself. But I wouldn't wish that on anyone outsource as much as you can, transcriptions editing, marketing promotion, and so on, free up your energy. So you can focus on delivering the best experience you possibly can to your listeners. And use your podcast to build affinity because people want to do business.
They know like, and trust. Alright, I'm about to turn it over. See if you guys have any questions. If you do have questions, you can drop them in the chat box right now, you can throw them in the Q and A's, I'll find them either way. I'm happy to stay on the call for as long as you guys have questions. Um, so why don't we go ahead and see if anybody has any questions right now.
So no questions. I obviously must have answered. I do see somebody raising their hand. So I'm going to give them a few seconds to pose the question. Um, but please let Oh. And people drop in the Q and a. Alright great. Here we go. How many interviews do you record on the same day? Uh, I am thinking that I might record one or two per month.
Jillian. Great question. So for, like I said, I have two different podcasts. On the agents of change podcasts, because it's always been remote. And because I'm the only host I. I don't have it set up that way. Basically, if somebody, if I get three people who chose the same day to record a podcast, I just do it.
They're using Calendly so they can see if my calendar is open. They'd do it. Three is a lot in a day, but certainly it is possible to do it. Um, the other podcast I do fast forward Maine. I have a cohost URI Dubach off. He is very busy as well as I am. So what we do is we actually set up half day recording sessions before COVID we would actually.
Go to savings bank, go upstairs and record with some really nice equipment they have set up there. Uh, and we would bring in our guests. So we'd all be in the same room. Very cool. Really enjoyed that. And so, because of that, because we were so busy and it took time to set up everything, we would try and record three episodes in a row with all the intros and outros, it was exhausting, but it was a great way of getting ahead and staying ahead when, before COBIT hit, we were like, ah, Eight to 10 weeks ahead of our, of our published schedule.
So that was fantastic. Now we find ourselves trying to schedule anything as we're all working remotely. Rich. What was your initial equipment investment? Kim actually. And then she said, wait, Oh, I see. There's a thing. You mentioned you have two different podcasts. What if you have ideas for as many, three with all the different teams?
What's your impact, your overall brand? Alright. Two great questions. My initial invest equipment investment, keeping in mind that I already had a laptop. My initial and I already had, um, garage band because it came with my laptop. My initial investment was $30. I bought a headset, uh, sending you're sending me or something like that, that plugged into my computer.
And I had people like John Lee Dumas and Amy Porterfield tell me that my sound was incredible. Well, and I loved that headset. I actually love a headset in some ways more than my mic that I have now, just because I can't lean forward or back. Where with the old heads that I could even walk around the room, so $30 and then it died and I bought another one and no other one that I bought was ever as good.
The quality just wasn't there. I don't know why that was. So I asked around and I ended up getting this blue Yeti mic, which I believe goes for about $130. And the pop filter was another seven after that. Now, like I said, my team is using more expensive equipment, but if you have a. And I did everything myself when I first started, but as time has gone on, I'm leveraging more of my team and outside providers like my transcriptionist, and that does tend to add up, but I feel that the value is there and it frees up my time to do other things.
And then to your other question, which was on, um, What, uh, if you have all that, these different podcasts out there, how does that affect your overall brand? It's actually an excellent question. And if I was starting today with no podcast, but with all of this knowledge in my head, I might start a podcast called something like flight school.
Where I would literally just be doing the agents of change podcasts, but with the flight branding. So everything was under the flight umbrella. Um, but the nice thing about having the agents of change, first of all, the agents of change, which was originally called the marketing agents was my opportunity to do something that was outside of flight.
And as time went on, I realized, Holy cow, this is a lot of work. So I moved everything impact underneath flight, but we already had that kind of branding built up and we had a conference by the name of the yeah. Of change. It just made sense. So there is a little bit of challenge managing basically three different brands.
Fast-forward main was yet another brand. And partially because of our relationship in co-sponsorship with Machai savings bank, that's one of the reasons we decided to give it its own brand as well, but it is a challenge and I don't necessarily know that I'd recommend coming up with a new brand. It really depends on what you're out there trying to promote.
Um, and just think, think a lot about that before. And this is why strategy is so important. Ah, okay. David asks, maybe I missed it. Did you mention the optimum length of a podcast episode? I believe between 15 and 30 minutes. Um, so this is one of those things about best practices. Don't always equal best results.
John Lee Dumas, who, you know, I definitely followed into podcasting friend of mine, entrepreneur on fire. He's got like one of the world's most popular podcasts. He made his, like the exact, the length of time of somebody's commute. It was like 22 minutes. So he made sure that he came in and like 22 minutes, at least in the early days.
I don't know if he always stuck with that, but that was how he approached it for me. Um, You know, it's that old line about how long should a, man's killed be a short enough to keep your interest long enough to cover the topic? So these days, so 20 to 30 minutes on my interview, and then my intros and outros are usually about five minutes and three minutes a piece.
So, you know, do the math, um, Our fast forward main episodes tend to go a little bit longer cause we have two hosts and we have a lot of questions and I've had episodes that go longer. So the nice thing about podcasts is there's no set amount and one of the greatest podcasts of all time, in my opinion, and the opinion of many, yeah.
Others is something called hardcore history. And these are really. In depth looks at moments in history. And some of these are multi episodes and each episode is a minimum of 90 minutes. But the last one that I listened to was like six hours, six hour podcasts. I'm all about the fall of the Roman empire.
But he is one of the most popular podcasts out there. So it really just depends on what your audience is willing to listen to. If you have content that's fantastic and goes 45 minutes, then by all means have a 45 minute podcast. It will add to your time. And if you're having a transcriptionist transcribe it, it will add to the cost as well.
Uh, so this intermittent sound, the breaking up of one speaking is truly, actually normal. I'm not sure. What you're asking. So if you can ask it in another way, a and I'll definitely try to answer that. Um, David asks, what do you think of video videocast video versus audio only? Um, Well, like I said, I've started using zoom.
So I guess I am doing that right now. And we may end up taking those videos and putting them up to YouTube. Um, so we're going to have to see how that goes. I, myself, don't watch a lot of talking head videos. I find that especially ones that go 20, 30, 40 minutes. I mean, that's, it's kind of painful if I'm being honest.
I don't think anybody wants to look at me for 20, 30 minutes. Oh, I guess you guys did, but I'm just in the top right corner. Um, in general, I think that goes, that. Audio only is better because people can listen in the car. They can listen while they're doing other things. It's just, it's a great way of absorbing information.
So I prefer audio only, but if you're doing zoom, like I am, then you have the option. So you can take that video and you can put it up to YouTube as well. And maybe pick up a couple extra views there or embedded into your blog. Posts to make them a little bit more sticky or put them up to LinkedIn as an embedded video.
And those are all great ways of leveraging that content. You can always find new ways to repurpose your content and podcasts are great. You've got the transcript, you've got the audio, you've got the video and you can have a whole bunch of images that you created these as well. How many times have you evolved your podcasting approach?
Uh, or is your process pretty much the same now as it was in the start? I definitely continue to evolve, although maybe not as quickly as some of my peers, because I've kind of found what works for me. Um, like I said, when I first started, I did everything myself as time went on, I started to outsource certain elements of the process.
That for me were just incredibly time consuming and I wasn't good at, um, and if you have that opportunity, if you have the budget to do what I strongly recommend outsourcing that my equipment I've gotten a little bit more expensive over time. Um, but I still don't have, I know my editor sound editor would love for me to get like an amp and all these other things and surround myself with soundproofing walls.
But you know, it's just not in my budget or in my interest right now. Yeah. Because I think it's good enough. But there may come a day where I feel that it's not good enough and I need to increase the quality of the audio and maybe do some more stuff with video as well. And we've tried, or I shouldn't say try, we we've done different things over the years.
Like I heard on somebody's podcast, starting off with a clip of something that, uh, his guests said his way of jumping in the show. And I stole that in the very next week. I started using that in my podcast as well. So, you know, you hear things, you see things on TV, you watch. You watch, um, interview shows and all of a sudden you get these new ideas for how to make the shows more interesting.
And I have had some episodes that really lend themselves well to video. Like we recently, we haven't released it yet. Did, uh, an interview with somebody who showed us how to do keyword research. And it was kind of important to look over his shoulder. So we did the audio and I did play by play, but we also were going to use the video and put that up to the website as well.
Uh, chilly and asked, do I have a recommendation for LaValley or Mike so that I could record well vlogging, um, and then repurpose some of the content into a podcast. I don't Jillian. Um, if you send me over, like, uh, later on, let me know what kind of recording device you're using outside of your mic. Like, are you putting it into your iPhone or Android?
I might be able to make a recommendation based on that. And by the way, there are people who love the technology side of things. Um, and you know, I know that Pat Flynn and John Lee Dumas and cliff Ravenscraft all have their recommended list of products to buy on their site and they spend a lot more time thinking about it than I do.
So that might be a good resource for you as well. Um, I'm also interested in the two Oh seven that may be separate outside, uh, podcast webinar. I'll check out your website first. Uh, yes, Kim of course, feel free to reach out to me later. Sorry. I should probably read these info before I just start reading them out loud.
Um, customers have requested that I record readings of blogs for their commute, but most people seem to think of podcasts as interviews with guests. If we do both, would you keep them separate? A great question, Rob? Um, I have. When I, so I actually had an, I've had two other podcasts, which I've canceled. The first one was called flight cast and it lasted all of four weeks.
Um, I actually got a lot of people listening to it, but I hated doing it. And really what it was is I would write out a script and read from it. Some people hate it, listening to scripted podcasts. Others love them. And a lot of people do with standalone podcasts, not every podcast is guest base. So if your, if your audience ROV are asking you.
For an audio version of your blog so they can listen. That's super easy. You've heard it done the work. You just got to record them. You don't even have to get a transcriptionist. You're working in reverse. I would say, go with that. And then occasionally you might want to throw in an episode where you interview somebody like a bonus episode and then start to see which ones resonate better with your audience, because really you could easily have somebody read those, um, blog posts on your behalf.
If you didn't want to do them yourself, or, and, but maybe you prefer interviews or vice versa.
Uh, Oh, and you're having trouble hearing. I'm sorry to hear that. Uh, no, it shouldn't be a normal zoom experience. I haven't heard from anybody else that they're struggling with that. So hopefully the recording, may I actually, so there were thunderstorms. I have heard people losing their internet today.
Hopefully it's not on my end. Hopefully it's on your end because I'm recording this. And so you can listen to it without the audio problems. That's my hope at least. All right. Few people dropped a question or two into the, uh, chat as well. So I'm just going to go over there for a second. You can post your questions to either place.
Um, do you think, would it. Would you think it's a good strategy to have a YouTube channel that's converted to a podcast like having a video edition and an audio on? Yeah, I think that's fine. I don't think that it's compelling to watch a 20 to 40 minute interview, but maybe you would make it really interesting.
I guess it depends on the topic and certain episodes, like I said, on our podcast, we have, I have included the video component because yeah, it really did require some screen sharing and some conversation around it. So at the end of the day, You know, podcasting is traditionally audio, but there's always been video or blogs.
Uh, you know, it's sometimes you're just using the same words to describe content. And if your video, if your content is better done through video, then you should be using video. And if it's better done through audio, then probably you can just do a podcast, but you can certainly mix and match your media based on what your goals are and the needs of your audience.
Um, all right. It looks like I've gotten to all the questions that people wanted me to read out loud. Like I said, I am going to be sending you out a package in a day or two with the slides, with the recording of this video. Um, And, uh, my sound editor actually is just trying to, in letting me know that, uh, he does have two or three recommendations for lavender, uh Mike's that we will have in deer lavender, lavender mix, no lavalier mics that we'll put into the notes as well.
So in a couple of days, you'll get a whole package of, uh, some of the technical sides of the podcast as well. So hopefully that will help any questions I couldn't get to today that were a little bit, uh, too technical. Or it just didn't seem like they fit with this strategy of how to create it podcast for your business.
Um, but this is fantastic. Uh, and Kim, yeah, the answer is yes. So you can respond to that or you can reach out to me, but this has been fantastic. I really enjoyed sharing what I've done with my podcast and how it's helped their business. Hopefully it inspires bunch of you to do it. Uh, if you do get a podcast up and running, you know, feel free to drop me a note, let me know about it.
And if you're looking for a guest for your podcast, I can be had, I've got some free time coming up. So other than that, thank you very much, everybody. Um, I will follow up in the next couple of days. Once the video has been converted and it's been an absolute pleasure to share this, you have a great day.