Want to know how to start a successful podcast, but not sure where to start? In this episode of The Systems Made Simple™ Podcast Courtney Elmer reveals the ins and outs of podcasting for business.
And what good is a podcast if it doesn’t get you more sales and clients?
You can't launch a podcast based on "hope." But you can build a highly successful show with the right strategy.
Don't worry — I've got the strategy, and I want to show you how to create, launch, and leverage your message into a show that positions you as a credible leader in your industry and creates more traffic and sales for your business.
BY THE TIME YOU FINISH LISTENING, YOU’LL LEARN:
PLUS, find out what separates podcasts no one’s ever heard of from ones that get tens of thousands of downloads every episode — and how you can create a show that gets the attention it deserves.
If this episode inspires you, leave a review and share your biggest takeaway with me. And while you've got your phone out, make sure to follow me on Instagram @thecourtneyelmer for more quick tips on how to streamline your business systems and spend more time in your zone of genius.
Ready to learn how to create, launch, and leverage your message into a top-ranked podcast of your own? ENROLL NOW in our brand new short course: How to Start a Profitable Podcast and get $50 OFF your registration right now with code SAVE50! Guaranteed to shorten the learning curve and save you hundreds of hours of headache, trial, and error.
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You’re Listening to the Systems Made Simple™ podcast, Episode #56, which is all about podcasting for business, how to start a successful podcast, and how to make money in podcasting! Today we’re talking about the fastest, most effective way to create, launch, and leverage your message in a way that positions you as a credible leader in your industry. Oh, and, it’s free. Want to find out how I did it, and how you can too? Stay tuned!
We have pivoted so much internally here as a company over the course of the past year, building toward the bigger Vision that we hold here at the EffortLESS Life® for the ways in which we want to help you find success in your business in your life without having to work so dang hard for it.
It was midsummer last year when I started getting requests from different entrepreneurs, some friends, some acquaintances, asking me how we created such a successful podcast in so short of a time.
If you’re just now finding us, or if you haven't heard me share this before, our podcast is ranked among the top 500 shows in the entire world, globally in business and education and among the top 300 shows here in the U.S. in those categories which a really competitive so that made me very excited when we saw those stats roll in. We launched our show and received over 65 five-star reviews the very first week that the show dropped, and we have continued to share content and figure out what you, our audience, wants to hear each week, and it's been a lot of fun.
Even our producer said he’s never seen anyone launch a podcast with such success. Launching a podcast was one of those things in my business that I had always wanted to do, but it was a back burner thing — I never saw myself from doing it until much later. I had a toddler at home, I had a lot on my plate. Maybe you can relate if launching a show of your own is something you’ve ever considered. But it was one of those things where I took the leap and here we are. So over the summer friends and colleagues started asking you what did you do to launch your podcast? Break it down for me. I have a podcast I'm thinking about launching and I don't know where to start and nobody wants to launch to crickets.
I mean if you’re thinking about launching a podcast, you don't want to launch to crickets, do you? No! Nobody does. So the question is: how can I create a show that stands out in the marketplace in a sea of shows? And maybe the better question to be asking: is what makes a good show, good? And, how do I create one? How do I learn podcasting for business, how to start a successful podcast, and how to make money in podcasting?
So fast forward to Fall 2020: this was after the sky fell with Covid and all the craziness was going on and we had to pivot a lot of things in our business. The Retreat that we normally host every year we had to cancel twice because people tend to travel in from all over the country for that Retreat and with people not traveling as much of course not wanting to sit in the same room breathing the same air as other people over the course of a weekend, we had to do things differently.
So this little idea took hold in the back of my mind and I asked myself, what if I did put together a simple program to teach people how to launch their podcast? What if I could teach podcasting for business, how to start a successful podcast, and how to make money in podcasting? Because this is one of the needs that I saw in the industry: plenty of people out there telling you how to create a podcast, but very few (if any! I haven't come across any) are teaching you how to launch that podcast successfully so that you can stand out in a crowded marketplace and get your show seen and your voice heard.
I decided to put the word out there that I was creating a very small invite-only program to help new podcasters and existing podcasters launch or relaunch their show. Maybe they wanted to launch something new and they didn't know to start and they wanted to do it right the first time and not waste their time and energy creating something that was a flop, or maybe they had a show already, but it didn't have the “oomph” they wanted it so they wanted a way to quickly rebuild momentum and rank on the charts. Maybe they wanted to learn podcasting for business or how to make money in podcasting.
Within a matter of a few weeks we put the concept together we put it out there to the marketplace. Our waitlist mushroomed overnight to about 50 people and even though it doesn't sound like a lot, it was 50 people who were ready to go with their podcast — and that'll be another topic for another show, about how to grow a hot and ready waitlist for your offer.
Of those 50 people, we had over a 26% conversion rate into the program itself, which is unheard of - industry standard sales conversion rates are typically 2% - 3%. After we closed the doors we had to reopen them for a flash sale of 24 hours because we had that many people asking when they could get in the next program, and they didn't want to wait. We made a special back-end offer that converted at over 16%, and teaching that program was the most fun I have ever had teaching a program. Those who have gone through it learned step-by-step not only how to create a show that converts their listeners into customers, but they learned step-by-step how to launch it and keep that momentum going, because that’s the secret to having a successful podcast: knowing how to make it profitable, knowing how to launch it and get it seen, and ultimately, having a clear plan laid out to continually drive free, organic traffic to the show to continually build your listener base without having to rely on paid ads or paid marketing strategies.
So when I was putting together this episode today, I thought you know — let me share a bit of our process behind the scenes and show you how a podcast can be the fastest, most effective way to turn your message into profit for your business and to position you as a credible leader in your industry.
And I thought about this, and the way I want to break it down for you is to show you where most podcasters - whether new or seasoned - go wrong when it comes to podcasting for business. And in learning these mistakes to avoid, even if you never work with me to learn the EL podcasting formula, you will already be well ahead of your competition.
The first major mistake most podcasters make when it comes to podcasting in business is not having a clear content plan for their show. To clarify, most people do have a general IDEA for their show, and the topic that they want their show to be about. Most people have a general idea of who their audience is, and who their show is for. Where most podcasters fall short is in having a clear content strategy for their show, to segment their episodes in a way that converts listeners into customers.
It’s one thing to show up to the mic and record every week; it’s a whole ‘nother level to know how to create content with the specific intention of warming up your listener and stirring desire and creating demand for what you have to offer. And before you head down that road, no - your podcast doesn’t have to be a pitch fest or sound slimy or sleazy always talking about what you offer. There’s a very subtle, very effective way to build influence and be seen as an authority on your area of expertise, and a very specific structure your episodes need to have to lead your listeners down a path to where they want what you offer, so when the time comes to sell it, they buy.
Think of your content plan like courting your listener. That’s such a 1950s term. But it makes sense. Remember back in the 1950s when guys used to court girls they were interested in? Ok maybe you don’t remember, I don’t remember, I was born in the late 80s. But this idea of courting wasn’t dating around. It had a very specific intention and a purpose. It was a specific strategy designed to persuade someone to marry. Your podcast is like a courtship with your listener. Just like a courtship in the 1950s was a period of development where a couple gets to know each other and decides if there will be an engagement, followed by a marriage, your podcast is a period of development where your listener gets to know you, and begins to understand who you are and what you stand for. Then, they really start to like you. And if they like you, and they trust you, naturally they’ll want to learn from you. The courting period is your voice in their ears every week. The engagement is when you make an offer to them after an appropriate time. The marriage is when they buy.
If you don’t have a clear content plan for your show, you risk losing the relationship. You won’t hold your listeners’ attention, and your show won’t convert and you won’t profit. So, you need a clear content plan when it comes to podcasting for business.
The second major mistake most podcasters make is not having a clear launch plan for their show. This is where I see a lot of podcasters fail. They spend all that time, energy and effort creating their show, recording their episodes, editing them or having someone edit them so they sound good, and putting that show out there fingers crossed in hopes that it will be a hit, and then, nothing. Breaks my heart. And it’s a colossal waste of time. You, my friend, are a busy entrepreneur. You have courses to run, students to help, clients to serve. You have a family to take care of, relationships to juggle, kids to nurture. You don’t have time to waste time.
Without a clear plan to launch your show, your show will flop and there goes your podcasting for business. I’m being straight with you here, because you need to know this. Before you spend any time, energy, money, or effort creating a podcast, you better darn well be sure you know how to launch it effectively, or else your show won’t get the attention it deserves. And you will join the other podcasters in that obscure place on Apple where shows go to die because no one can find them. The last thing you want is to create a show that fails.
It takes a lot of planning and work to create a show and even more for podcasting for business. Ask any successful podcaster. But is it a worthwhile investment of your time when you know how to do it right? Hell yea. Without a launch plan though, you likely won’t rank. Your show will be overlooked, and it will take months if not years to see the tiniest uptick in momentum, if you see any at all. There are a LOT of podcasts out there. 850,000 active podcasts last I checked, with a combined total of over 30 MILLION EPISODES.
How do you make sure your show gets seen, and your message gets heard? How can you use podcasting for business, and more importantly, how to make money in podcasting? With a clear launch strategy. This is the stuff Google doesn’t tell you how to do when it comes to podcasting. You can find out the best microphone to buy, the best editing tools to use, the best graphic templates to make your cover art. You can find out how to create an episode and upload it to your podcast provider and share the audio clips on your social channels. But you won’t find good resources on how to launch your podcast. You have to think of your show like you would think of your digital course or program. If you spend all that time creating it and then make a post to announce it on social media and send an email to your list, it’ll be overlooked.
Just like you have to build a community of people eager to buy your course when it goes live, there’s a launch runway that has to happen in order to build hype for your show before it even airs. This is how we ranked so fast and gained over 65 5-star ratings during our first week. It’s how my student Jess re launched her show and landed at the #8 spot in the marketing category, right in between Brendon Burchard and Angie Lee. It’s how my friend Joey launched his show and landed in the #34 spot on Apple in a very highly competitive category, right ahead of James freakin’ Wedmore. James is my friend, so I can say that. We had a friendly competition going. James' show has hundreds of episodes and millions of downloads. Joey’s show was brand spankin’ new with 4 or 5 episodes. How did Joey beat James and land ahead of him in the charts? With a clear launch plan. That’s how you use podcasting for business.
The last big mistake most podcasters make is not having a clear traffic strategy for their show. You’ve created your show, you’ve launched it. Now what? How do you expect to grow your show if you don’t have a clear plan in place to continually drive traffic to it? Even if a podcaster gets their show up, and gets it running, many of them fail to think beyond that. How do you plan to drive traffic to your show long term? You can pay thousands of dollars in advertising, hoping to pick up new listeners with no real way to measure that return. Or, you can build and keep your momentum by focusing in on some key organic traffic strategies — organic meaning FREE — to drive traffic to your show over time.
One of these strategies is SEO - which sounds techy but really it’s easy when it comes to podcasting. This is a strategy that most of the top podcasters aren’t doing, because they have big shows and don’t need to, so this is one way to get a competitive edge. Another strategy is utilizing search engine traffic through Pinterest, which isn’t a social media platform like most people think it is, but a powerful search engine second only to Google. Another way is through PR and media features for your show, which is a win-win way to add credibility not only to your show, but also to YOU and to your business. These are all ways to use podcasting for business. Think getting featured in Forbes, Huffington Post, Thrive Global, PopSugar, Parenting Magazine, or any media outlet related to your industry.
What would that do for your business? What would that do for your visibility? How can you use podcasting for business? OH, yea, and did I mention it’s all free? What about building your email list, courtesy of your show? And social media platforms, courtesy of your show? There’s a way to do it, and it starts with having a clear traffic strategy in place. Now before you start feeling overwhelmed and thinking you have to do ALL of these things in order to drive traffic to your show, let me be clear: you don’t.
You just have to map out the strategy for getting traffic that makes the most sense for your business, with the time that you have available, and the energetic resources you have available. Without a clear traffic strategy, your show will lose momentum, you’ll lose influence, and even if you started off on the right foot and ranked in the beginning, you won’t continue to rank ongoing. Your show will lose steam and you’ll lose motivation to keep it going. And if that happens, how do you expect it to be a viable source of revenue for your business? It won’t. There goes your podcasting for business.
So don’t be like most podcasters and fail to have a clear content plan, a clear launch strategy, and a clear traffic plan to grow your show.
Having the right plans in place makes podcasting easy and dare I say, effortless. Having these plans in place is like having a backbone to your body. The backbone of something is the part that makes something successful. In your body, it makes movement possible. In your business, it makes freedom possible. In your podcast, it makes profit and growth possible. Your show needs a backbone, and these three components: a clear content plan, a clear launch strategy, and a clear traffic plan are it.
Want to launch a podcast of your own, but not sure where to start? Do you want to learn podcasting for business, how to start a successful podcast, and how to make money in podcasting? Doors to the EffortLESS Podcasting Formula™ are closed right now, but don't worry — you can get on the waitlist to find out when they'll reopen next, and learn step-by-step the stuff you can’t Google about podcasting, like how to create, launch, and leverage your message into a highly profitable podcast and position yourself as a credible leader in your industry, and add additional revenue to your business. If you want to be part of my next focus group on podcasting for business, head to courtneyelmer.com/effortlesspodcasting and get on the waitlist now.
And! If you’ve ever got a question you’d like to ask me whether it’s on podcasting for business, how to start a successful podcast, or how to make money in podcasting, come follow us on Instagram and send me a DM @theeffortlesslife.co I love hearing from listeners like you!
Coming up next week on the show I’m sitting down with a VERY special guest, who happens to be a close personal friend of mine, and she’s going to lift the curtain and show you step by step what she did to relaunch her podcast and land the #8 spot on Apple’s charts sandwiched right there in between podcasting greats like Brendon Burchard and Angie Lee. If you are toying with the idea of launching a podcast or using podcasting for business, you don’t want to miss this episode. That’s coming up next week; until then, go live YOUR EffortLESS Life®.