Dude, Why Aren’t You Podcasting?
Author: Greg Bennett
I was having a few Manhattans (and thank you Don Draper for bringing these back) with a colleague of mine in late August of 2014, when he started talking about his fascination with podcasting. I’d known some about what they were, little audio interviews or radio shows, but apparently was quite clueless about how big they had become.
“There are thousands of podcasts on any topic you could ever want, from learning Latin dancing to how to better manage your time. They’re awesome. I subscribe to about 20,” my colleague said.
“You subscribe to 20? How much are they?” I asked, though distracted by the thought of him learning Latin dancing—he’s no slight fellow.
“Free! And you can make a fortune with a successful one.”
“How does that work? They’re free, but you can make money doing them?”
“That’s what’s so cool…you just build an audience of tens or hundreds of thousands of people around the world, all downloading your podcast, then you sell ads or do product placement or something.”
“Hmmm, sounds like you have no clue what you’re talking about,” I joked, though a bit intrigued.
“Well I don’t totally get all of, yet. I started listening to these podcasts on how to do podcasting.”
“Podcasts on how to do podcasting?”
“Yes. One guy, this Johnny Lee Dumas, is an entrepreneur who does a podcast on interviewing entrepreneurs, and he generates about $30,000 a month in revenue.”
“A podcast on podcasting, from an entrepreneur who interviews entrepreneurs. I see a pattern here. And how do you know he makes that much?” I asked, now frantically signaling for a Draper refill.
“He posts a running total on his web page. I bought several courses from him on how to get into it and make money.”
“Did you at least get to see the tote board on his web site go up as your credit card cleared?”
“Yeah. That was the best part.”
“I know it sounds crazy, but he’s not the only one. Tons of people are cleaning up with podcasts. In fact, several well-known celebs and comics are getting away from traditional radio and TV and just pushing podcasts—like Kevin Pollack, and Adam Carolla.”
It could have been the drinks, but the more he talked, the more podcasting seemed like an interesting idea. He said the reason podcasts blew up a few years ago was because of the explosion of hand-held devices, like your phone, and iPods, and tablets. Made sense.
“You can take the podcasts everywhere you go: driving, working out, doing stuff around the house. And the money these guys are making…”
“Yeah, yeah, $30,000 a month,” I chuckled and chomped down on a well-soaked black cherry.
“Laugh if you want, but I’m seriously thinking about starting one.”
“Yeah. I mean I know how to set ’em up and how to promote ’em, but I just have no idea what I would talk about. You need a point a view—you know—stuff you would…”
“Say? You need content in other words?”
“Yeah. You need content.”
Well, if there’s one thing I do have its content. Tons of tons of tips and ideas and strategies I’ve collected over 25 plus years as a sales trainer, coach, consultant, and writer, all just sitting in computers and filing cabinets, or buried deep within Power Point decks.
“You know,” I leaned in and dropped to a whisper, though not sure why. “I’m definitely an expert at sales, and I do have crap load of content.”
“Yes, and like I said, I know how to create these things and get ’em out there.”
Another sip. A squint-eyed stare. And not exactly simultaneous, but close.
“Dude, why aren’t we podcasting?”
Five months later, we launch the podcast! My colleague Ken became my business partner shortly after that fateful meeting, and we spent the next five months creating a new business and launching our podcast, “The Daily Drive with Greg Bennett” (you can subscribe to it on iTunes or Stitcher). Our goal was to create a new website, GregBennettSales.com, and a podcast for salespeople—like a daily booster shot of encouragement, belief, motivation, and sales tips.
We successfully launched the podcast on February 2, 2015, and while we haven’t quite reached the level of hundreds of thousands of worldwide listeners, we’re off to a great start. I’d like to share with you some of what we’ve learned so that if you’re considering creating your own podcast (and I strongly encourage you to), your path will be shorter and without as many potential potholes.
Greg Bennett is a nationally renowned sales and business author, speaker, trainer, and coach. For information on his programs visit GregBennettSales.com; subscribe to his podcast “The Daily Drive with Greg Bennett”. Find it on iTunes or Stitcher.
Quick tips for creating your own podcast:
• Pick a topic. Your podcast could be about any area of personal or professional interest. The more passionate you are about the topic, the more interesting the podcast will be.
• Decide on a production style. You’ll need to decide the type of podcast you want to do: an interview format, just you talking, two or more people talking, etc.
• Determine how often you’ll produce the podcast. Committing to a daily podcast, as we have done, takes a great deal of time and energy. You might start with a weekly or even monthly production to get started.
• Select the level of recording quality you’ll need. You can record an MP3 audio segment by simply using your laptop microphone, or upgrade and use a professional recording studio. You can even find background music and sound effects online if you want to dress up the recording.
• Explore recording and mixing options. The best online recording software is Audacity. You can download it free, and it’s super easy to use for mixing two or three voices, along with sound effects and music.
• Promote your podcast on iTunes or Stitcher. Getting your podcast hosted on iTunes or Stitcher (for non-apple products) doesn’t cost anything, but you’ll need to go through the submission process, which includes certain steps and protocols that will take a few weeks.
• Monetize your podcast. It will take a while to get your podcast and website into a position to make money. You’ll need several thousand listeners and subscribers before you can offer advertisers something of value. An initial strategy may be to offer a VIP, or backstage pass, for a nominal fee and then provide these people with extra value or additional services.