Podcasting Lessons on Business & Life After 150 Episodes WPCP: 150
Thank you to my sponsor, LiquidWeb, for sponsoring this episode.
I’ve been thinking about this milestone episode for a while now.
I knew I was coming up on episode 150 and wanted to make sure it was a solo show so I could do a recap of what podcasting has done for myself and my business.
I should be beyond episode 150 at this point (I had a few periods in the first couple of years where I had breaks in the show, unfortunately) but I’m here and it’s time to celebrate.
I’ll be doing a live stream a few days after this episode goes live with some giveaways for my audience (you have to attend live to get the giveaways), so be sure to like my Facebook page and pay attention to the events!
Moving onto my Business & Life Lessons
I’ve always considered myself a pretty confident person, but it took a lot longer to get over the imposter syndrome in my business than I ever thought it would. For the first 5 years, I really struggled with “who I am to teach this, or talk about this” (this being WordPress) because I wasn’t a coder or programmer. Eventually, I took a strong stance from that place.
I wasn’t a coder or programmer, but I had built a business around WordPress because of my love of WordPress. Plain and simple.
As I figured things out I would share them.
Simple, not rocket science, right?
Yet for some reason, the simplest things aren’t always the easiest things.
I’ve said this many times and it bears repeating for this episode. I launched the podcast simply because I wanted to have more fun. I had zero expectations nor did I have a strategy. I just wanted to bring more of ‘me’ into my business and have fun while I did it (I was pretty deep in the thick of client work during this time and really feel like I needed something that was mine).
The more I showed up as myself, the more the podcast grew. What I was saying was resonating with people and the feedback was beyond encouraging.
Choosing to ‘show up’, be me, interview interesting people and let the rest work itself out was the best thing I could have done.
Had I waited until I had a strategy for the podcast I can guarantee you it wouldn’t have launched when it did. Podcasts weren’t new, but there were far less at the time than there are today.
Doing the podcast gave me the confidence I needed in my business to really show up.
Connections & Relationships
As much fun as I have doing the show, the connections, and relationships that have come out of the podcast is without a doubt the biggest gift of them all.
It’s so easy to get caught up in our businesses and just getting the work done. Sometimes taking the time to connect with people feels like a luxury or something we fit in after the work is done. Having the podcast has sort of ‘forced’ me to keep connecting with people and extend my relationships.
You can scale your business on your own, but it’s a lot more fun and happens much quicker when you have people to share it with and support you along the way.
And at the end of the day, the podcast is a way to use the platform I’ve built to share someone else’s message (or product or service). It’s a genuine give for my guest and my audience.
I truly feel giddy when I think about the people who have become friends simply by connecting through the podcast. They’ve made a difference in my life whether it was business advice, a good laugh or helping me to see something from a different perspective.
It makes me feel like a little kid when I think about how many more awesome people I have yet to connect with.
Sh*t Happens… and it’s O.K
We’ve heard all the inspirational sayings like,
“Fail hard, fail fast”…
“It doesn’t matter what happens to us, what matters is how we handle it.”
“If it doesn’t challenge you, it won’t change you.”
You get the point.
The challenge when you’re going through something like this is that it can feel overwhelming, frustrating, and lonely.
Here’s the thing with shit happening.
It happens to ALL of us. It’s just that most people don’t talk about the shit they’re going through (or have gone through), so sometimes it feels like we’re on an island.
The more you talk about it (and I don’t mean bitch about it), the more people connect with you, appreciate you and say “me too!” The shit doesn’t have such a grip on me when I give voice to it and share it.
And at the end of the day, it’s just life.
Anyone who has embarked on this entrepreneurial journey can attest to the times of confusion and lack of clarity that comes from time to time.
I’ve changed directions a handful of times over the last 4 years and the only reason I was able to pivot from one thing to the next was through the ‘doing’.
When I started my business I never wanted to do services (i.e, build websites). My intention was always information marketing, but I stumbled into WordPress within the first 6 months of my business and took an 8-year detour (that sounds really crazy as I write that).
As a friend of mine says, “here’s the thing…”
When you start talking to other entrepreneur’s all of the sudden you’re exposed to everything they’ve been through, what they do, and how they’ve grown their business.
I have yet to have an interview that hasn’t left me inspired, and given me a new perspective on what I can be doing.
That doesn’t mean I give up what I’m doing in hopes of jumping into what they’ve shared (think tactics vs. strategies here). I simply take away what serves me most.
Sometimes that means I try something new, other times it means I adjust something I’m already doing or try a different approach.
Either way, it’s through DOING that I get clear.
Which is where I’ve landed today.
I have two primary focuses: Content and lead generation.
There is plenty within both of those that goes deeper, but that’s it. If it doesn’t fall under one of those two focuses, I’m not getting into it.
Nothing… and I mean nothing has grown my audience the way the podcast has.
I’ve always been a huge fan of audio content, both in terms of podcasts and audio books (I almost said books on tape. haha!). I loved that I could always put something good into my head when I’m out and about (it’s pretty much the only content I can consume while doing something else. I’ve tried plenty of times to watch videos and do something else but I end of missing half of what I was supposed to be watching.
There’s something about audio content that is more intimate than video (I love video too). When I think about how many people are choosing to listen to me (since I do solo shows just about every other week), it kind of blows my mind. With almost 200k downloads of the podcast I’m honored and humbled that people let me into their lives.
I’m sure the audience has changed as I’ve shifted things in my business as well, which is how it should work.
That made me think of the saying:
“People come into our lives for a reason, a season, or a lifetime.”
I apologize for not being able to find the quote source (feel free to send if you know who it is), but it’s just as true in business as it is in our personal lives.
Ideally your business will change and grow as you do. I’ve seen a lot of entrepreneur’s who have started out with a focus on one thing only to shift towards something else. A great example of this is Amy Porterfield. Amy started out talking about and teaching things Facebook related. If you go to her site today you won’t find Facebook training. She teaches how to grow a list, create courses, and run successful webinars. Which, considering how frequently Facebook changes things makes perfect sense to me.
I started out with a huge focus on certain things relative to WordPress. I don’t talk about Genesis anymore. I’m more focused on using WordPress as the foundation of your online business.
I’m mapping out some foundational content (cornerstone content), that will focus on some of the WordPress basics ( I should have done this a long time ago), but after that, I’ll continue with my focus on WordPress and Marketing.
Nothing surprised me more than to see the traffic to my site because of the podcast.
When I launched the podcast, iTunes quickly became one of my top traffic sources. The podcast still drives a ton of traffic, but not directly from iTunes anymore (I have other traffic sources I focus on more and most people listen to podcasts on mobile). The thing with traffic from a podcast though is that it’s not super easy to measure.
I share all my podcast episodes socially and have recently started sending them to YouTube (thanks to Hani Mourra’s Repurpose.io app). Now with Repurpose I’ll also be able to send them directly to Facebook (although I don’t know how many people who listen to an entire episode on Facebook). My podcast host is Blubrry (switched from Libsyn a while back) and I can send audio snippets from Blubrry to Facebook and Twitter… I just have to do it. 🙂
What I’d like to do is pull more quotes from podcast episodes (solo shows and interviews) and create videos. I was thinking more slideshow style video… think a quote, a photo, a graphic, a quote, etc. Short & sweet (mabye 6–10 frames), but links back to the post on the site. Stay tuned for that (this is something I could probably outsource, but want to do it a few times myself to see if the ROI is there).
For most people, we are our own worst enemies.
I have gotten in my own way on so many occasions only to find out that the things I was worried about most people don’t even notice.
No one is looking for perfection, they’re just looking for real.
The truth is, most people are too busy thinking about themselves (and I don’t mean that in a self-absorbed kind of way). They’re worried about their own ‘stuff’ and your ‘stuff’ isn’t ‘stuff’ to them (here’s to hoping that made sense). I sooooo do not have the energy to be anything but me. I’ve never pretended to be something I’m not, but the imposter syndrome is minimal in my life now. Am I going to make mistakes? Yep. All. The. Time.
But I’m still out here doing my thing.
To quote Teddy Roosevelt “the courage goes to the man IN the arena” (and thank you Brene’ Brown for bringing that to the light).
I Thank You ALL for listening and coming along for the ride with me!
Here’s to another 150 episodes!
Links Mentioned in this Episode
Originally published at thewpchick.com on June 2, 2017.