Planning for Podcast Success

Welcome to episode 354 of Hit the Mic with the Stacey Harris.

Hello. We are going to talk podcasting today because I’m guessing that if you listen to this podcast, you probably enjoy podcasts. You might think to yourself, “Should I have a podcast?” The answer is “maybe,” all right? However, the answer is definitely “no” if you don’t do the things first, we are going to talk about. Some of these are lessons learned through doing it the wrong way. Some of these are lessons learned through doing it the right way, but all of them are lessons. They’re lessons that I hope that you can learn earlier than I learned them, all right?

Let’s jump right in. I want to keep this brief because again, I want to keep this actionable. If you do not know yet, FYI, there is a free Launch Your Podcast training at thestaceyharris.com/launchyourpodcast that takes some of the stuff we’re going to talk about today and amplifies it. Even better, you want to go all the way in, there is a full-on five-module podcast program inside of Hit The Mic Backstage, as well as some podcasting trainings on growing your audience, et cetera, et cetera, so HitTheMicBackstage.com to get those. If you’re not sure, you’re still feeling this out, stick with me, and let’s talk about some things.

Repurpose Your Content

Number one thing that I think everyone should do and something that I didn’t do nearly early enough in my own podcast was build a plan to repurpose, meaning audio is great. Podcasting is amazing. We all hear the stats of how podcasting is the only way to go, but here’s the deal. It might not be for you. For me, it definitely isn’t. In fact, a lot of people who consume this show don’t listen to it. They actually read the transcript that goes up on the show notes page every week. I have a lot – a lot of people who consume the content that way. They don’t actually listen to the show. They read it, and that’s cool. How ever you best receive the value, as long as you take action on it, I don’t care. On the flip side, some people prefer to produce video even though they want to have an audio podcast. Great. Record videos. Rip the audio. Make them a podcast. Get the whole thing transcribed, and do a blog post.

Now you’ve taken one piece of content you’ve created, and it’s consumable in three ways. We’ve talked a lot about doing this with Facebook lives. You can do it that way. You can do it prerecorded so you can still batch. Either one is fine. Some combination of the two is okay, but when you’re building your podcast plan, when you’re thinking about launching your show, I want you to take a beat and think about the repurposing of it. Think about how you can evolve it into being multiple things. Another example with this show and you may have heard me talk about this in the past, but you may not have, in addition to the podcast being transcribed and it being in full transcript on the show notes of my own website, this gets edited into guest posts. Every Wednesday, a version of this podcast, an abbreviated version of this podcast goes live on LinkedIn. Also, those get submitted to sites like YFS Magazine and Huffington Post and places like that where I can regularly supply additional value.

Building a Plan

Now, as I was saying, it’s one of the words you’ve heard me say a couple of times is plan. The next thing I want to talk about is really building a plan. This is something we talk a lot about in the Launch Your Podcast free training, so if you hear me say build a plan, and you’re freaking out, be sure you check out that free training because we actually walk through it over the course of four days, so that you can really actually figure out how to build your plan and actually do it. When I talk about planning, the first step is always knowing who your audience is, because real talk, all of the other information comes from that piece of information. If you want to know how frequently you should be sending out new episodes, how long your episodes should be, if you should have guests, all of that comes from knowing who’s listening.

A really good real-life experience for me with that was when I first launched this show in 2012. Oh my gosh. In 2012, I had no freaking idea who was really listening. I really didn’t. I had an idea of who my ideal client was, certainly not in the same specific way I do now, so this is one of those lessons I learned the hard way. I just made it up. I just made a choice, and we did 30 to 60-minute episodes twice a week, so people could, I don’t know, listen to them from me, listen to me ramble for a really long time, I guess. I don’t know. As the clarity around who my ideal client was and who my ideal listener was and how I wanted to connect and serve and my goals for what they did with this content became more clear and in all honesty evolved a little bit, I realized that I really prefer to air on the side of brevity. I preferred to keep these short and actionable because that’s what my ideal listener prefers.

Now, there might be some of you who wish I went live or I put out more episodes. Now, we only have one episode a week now. We used to have two episodes a week up until this year, actually. That’s why there’s so many past episodes. I can’t think of anyone who has every told me they listen to all 300 and, well now, 54 episodes of this show. If you have, send me a note. I will send you a prize because I’m genuinely curious of just anyone who has listened to every single episode of the show. There’s a ton of past content now, so if you need more me, listen to that. Check out the YouTube channel. All of those things. There’s just lots of different ways I’m getting value. Again, it came down to knowing who my listeners were and knowing what I wanted them to do and how I wanted them to consume that. Not just this value but all of the value in my business. Be really clear on that because that will help you all the other questions.

The other reason I told that story is you’ll notice that it’s not the same now. Like I mentioned, we used to do two episodes a week. One with a guest, one just me. They were somewhere between 30 minutes and an hour long. I don’t think we ever had any that were longer than an hour. We may have had a couple that were. We may have had a couple that were like an hour and five minutes that were interviews, but I can’t think of any stand-alone episodes I did where it was any longer than 45 minutes. That’s just really long. That’s like three of today’s episodes. That’s a lot. Again, it was twice a week. Now, we very, very, very, very rarely have guests. We go live or we put out new episodes just once a week. They’re usually again just me because we don’t have guests. They usually are somewhere between 10 and 20, usually somewhere between 10 and 15 minutes long, because again, I want this to be consumable. I want this to be actionable.

The other thing I have learned about my podcast listeners, this is not the only show you listen to, and so I want you to have time to listen to all the shows you want to be listening to each and every week so that you can keep up, all right? All right, so build a plan to repurpose. Number two, just build a plan.

Know Your Purpose

The last thing I want to talk about is feeding off number two. You need to know why you want a podcast. Now a completely appropriate answer to this question is I want to entertain people. My favorite podcast in the world is actually not a business podcast. It’s actually one of the few podcasts I listen to that isn’t a business podcast. It’s called The West Wing Weekly. It’s fantastic. The other favorite podcast of mine is the Kevin Pollak’s Chat Show. I’m a big fan of storytelling. I’m a big fan of the West Wing, and so those two are my go-to’s. They have a much different format than this show does because the goals of those shows are different than the goal of my show. Me setting up something like a West Wing Weekly or a Kevin Pollak’s Chat Show is completely not in line with the why I podcast. Why I podcast is to, and I’ve said these words several times now, we could turn it into a drinking game, for you guys to consume this and then take action on it. I don’t want consumption for consumption’s sake.

If you are going to listen to this and then literally do nothing with it ever, just stop listening. Seriously, because my goal for you is for you to see movement, for you to see change, for you to grow and evolve and progress and get more comfortable with content marketing and e-mail marketing and social media marketing. All the different pieces that are digital marketing. I want you to make changes. That means you have to take action. That means I need to set you up for success by making this really actionable, really easy to follow, giving you very logical next steps and giving you all the tools I can to get you to take that action, to get you to implement, all right? That’s my why. Again, that’s very different from a West Wing Weekly or a Kevin Pollak’s Chat Show or even some of the other business podcasts I listen to. Know what your why is. Know the purpose for you in building this show.

Now, on the flip side of that, my other why, of course, is this is a piece of my marketing. This is a preview of the kind of content and feel and vibe you get from working with me, especially for those of you who are interested in Hit the Mic Backstage. That is the next logical step, the next upgrade to this show. It’s the VIP version of this show. Obviously, that’s a factor as well. Again, even the existence of Hit the Mic Backstage feeds into my overall why which is to get people to take action. That’s why the trainings in there are also really easy to implement, really easy to take action on and really clear. You notice I don’t have a lot of fluff. I don’t try to make things particularly complicated. In fact, I try to make them as simple as internet marketing will allow me to make them, because social media networks like to have a certain amount of in-built difficulty. I don’t know. For funsies, I guess. I try to make things as simple and as clear as I can, so again, people are taking that action. They’re seeing those results.

Even my marketing funnel kind of why feeds back to that general core why, which succinctly as I can make it, I want people to stop telling me they’re dumb. It really is. I do not want to hear anyone ever tell me again that they are dumb when it comes to this stuff, because you’re not dumb. You just don’t know this stuff yet. We can fix that. I cannot fix dumb. I can fix you not knowing something, all right? That’s it. Powered through. Now, go take action since I just went on a total soapbox moment about you guys taking action when listening to this show.

Next logical step, check out TheStaceyHarris.com/launchyourpodcast. Go check that out. It’s totally free, four-day training. In addition to that four days, spoiler alert, in the very first e-mail I send you after you sign up, there is a … I think it’s 60 minutes. It might be half an hour. There’s a full-on webinar master class version of the four-day training, so you can get it all now. Then, work through it with me over the course of the four days. If you have questions, facebook.com/TheStaceyHarris, twitter.com/thestaceyharris. Let me know there. I’m happy to answer them. If you really want to jump in, you really want to take action, you really want the VIP experience to this very show, Hit The Mic Backstage is the place to go. Check it out. We have a brand new training launch this month all about prepping your business for a time off, whether that time off was totally intended or not and, we’ve got ask me anything coming up, so be sure you don’t miss out on that. I will see you backstage. Bye.

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