Recently, my friend, Tammy Adams, provided a question for me to use as a topic for one of my YouTube VLOG episodes. However, when I started to think about how I would answer her question, I knew that the length of time that I wanted to spend answering this question, would make this better suited for a podcast episode.
Tammy's question was… “What do you think is the #1 reason people struggle to get their small businesses jump started and earning a decent income?” I share what I feel may be the top five reasons in this episode.
Here are a few reasons that I can think of.
They feel uncomfortable charging people money for something that comes so naturally to them. They feel that their “gifts and talents” should be offered freely to others.
They don’t feel confident in charging ENOUGH money for their products and services to allow them to operate a “profitable” and “responsible” business.
They have not been able to find the INTERSECTION between the MARKET PLACE and their gifts, talents, passions, experience, and areas of expertise.
They are too focused on where they are going to earn their next dollar and take little, to no, time evaluating where they want their business to be in the next five to ten years.
They failed to prepare for the fact that running a business requires more time than just doing the “activity” that generates their income.
I recently published a video where I gave a tour of my Next Level Studio. This prompted one individual to write a comment on the video (which this person has since deleted). That comment said….
Cliff, you have a LOT of stuff. Do you really need all of that? I mean as a self proclaimed Christian, (I’m anti religion btw) couldn’t you help more people by doing more with less and donating all the money you put into that stuff? … It’s none of my business how you spend your money but I feel like some of you guys that teach entrepreneurship to guys who have little income are kind of rubbing your success in our faces. I know that’s not your intention but do you ever think about what you’re actually putting out there? (No I'm not your audience, and no I don’t have a podcast, and no I haven’t worked as hard as you online, but yes I work hard every day and face my battles as they come)
This episode is my response to the questions posed in this comment.
This is one of those episodes where I'm all over the place. I start by talking about batch processing. I talk about my recently experiences with video content production. I talk about audio verses video production for someone who is just getting started. There are a few other items dropped in there as well.
Have you ever wondered why I'm so passionate about audio podcasting? Why I decided to pursue a full-time career in helping others launch their own podcasts?
I promise you, when I first made the decision to pursue this full-time, it wasn't for the money!
Sure, over the past ten years, working very hard to build this business, I now generate a great living from teaching others how to podcast. However, it is the the benefits that audio podcasting offers to those who have a MESSAGE that they want to get out into the world, that drives me to help others launch a podcast.
In this episode, I share eight benefits that an audio podcast offers that no other online platform can come close to delivering.
In this episode, I share some thoughts about the mindset of what people are paying for when they hire you for an hour of one-on-one coaching and/or consulting. When people pay you (whatever amount), they are not paying for an hour of your time, they are paying for access to the years of experience, knowledge and wisdom that you bring to the table.
I hope that this episode will inspire you to create a document where you can begin to take an inventory of all the value that you bring to the table. As you continue to grow, learning and experiencing new things (Including Failure), you'll be able to add to this list, increasing the value that you have to offer others.
The concept of “pricing” was one of the greatest sources of anxiety for me in the early days of building my own online business. Over the past decade, I've seen that “deciding how much to charge” is a huge pain point for others who are creating products and services.
Almost everyone undervalues what they do and have to offer and, as a result, charge way too little. In this episode, I share what I have learned from my own experience with pricing over the years. I explain why people actually want to pay you more money. Listen to this episode to learn seven ways that doubling your rates, overnight, will double your success.
In this week's episode, I'm joined my great friend, Tim Schmoyer from VideoCreators.com.
Tim has been working on the plans for his own live event and invited me to lunch to talk about how things went with my Next Level Workshop this past weekend. He wanted to know what I sort of things that I did that went really well, what would I do differently, etc.
I figured that there might be some of you who will eventually host your own live events and that our conversation would be valuable if it were recorded. That is what you are getting in this episode. Two friends, who each operate a very successful online business, sharing ideas and thoughts about planning live events.
In this week's episode, I talk about the fear that is involved when you step out to expand into a new product or services offering. I also share how I get through the paralysis that can occur when doubt, anxiety and fear about whether or not this next venture will work or not.
I also share few huge announcements that came from Apple regarding some exciting new features to the Podcasting rss feed specifications and the much anticipated podcast stats analytics from those who listen via the Apple Podcasts Apps.
In this week's episode, I talk about what “Audio Branding” is and the step-by-step process that is involved in getting a professional intro and outro for your podcast. I also share my own history of audio branding over the past 12 years.
If you are ready to take the audio branding for your show to the next level, I encourage you to check out my exclusive audio branding package with Music Radio Creative at PodcastAnswerMan.com/audio.
Want to start or grow an online business around your podcasting efforts? The first live event hosted here in the Next Level Studio is coming up next week on Friday and Saturday (June 16th and 17th). You can check out all the details at PodcastAnswerMan.com/NextLevelWorkshop.
Also, The next session of Podcasting A to Z is only a month away. Sign up today at PodcastingAtoZ.com.
To celebrate the 500th episode of The Cliff Ravenscraft Show (aka Podcast Answer Man), I invited a very special guest, my wife Stephanie, to join me. In this episode, we share our “Origin Story” or “Our Podcasting Journey” of how we turned something that started as a hobby into a very successful online business. We hope you enjoy!
Would you like to create an online business around your podcasting efforts? Or would you like to your existing online business to the next level? If so, we would love to invite you to join us at our Next Level Workshop hosted right here in the Next Level Studio. Click here for more information and to get registered.
Jerry, a listener to the podcast, recently sent me an email that contained the following statements.
“God is using your podcast to help change my life – not an exaggeration. I just listened to “Will Watching TV Make or Keep You Poor?” and loved every minute of it… It might be something you've already done somewhere, but I would really like to hear you talk about how you fit all of life in; how you get the “big rocks” in, as I'm sure you know the parable of the jar and the rocks, sand, and water… You talk about working so hard, watching all this TV (and all these movies), listening to a ton of podcasts as well as other things AND having what sounds like a healthy family life…
I go to work, come home and spend some time with the family, struggle through a few things, go to bed too late, get up early and do it all again without really being able to make any headway. What little time I actually give to these things, I mostly end up jumping from one project to the next without anything to show for it.
A lot of this, I think, comes from just not knowing what I should be doing at given times and wondering if I've given enough time to the most important things, which is why I'd love to hear how you do it.”
This episode contains my response to Jerry's question.
Recently, a friend of mine posted a quote from John Rohn that said “Poor People Have Big TVs. Rich People Have Big Libraries.” Over the years, I've seen a number of successful entrepreneurs who wear the fact that they don't watch television as a merit badge. I've even heard a few folks who have passed judgement on those who might enjoy binge watching a television series on Netflix.
In this episode, I share my very authentic response to this Jim Rohn quote. After that, I share a total of eight benefits that entrepreneurs can get by enjoying a great television show or more every now and then.
In this week's episode, I answer a question from a listener who's mother had been diagnosed with dementia and where the content was sort of a journal of the mom's progress. Family members had expressed concerns about the details being shared in the podcast and this person wanted my thoughts on how much personal information is okay to share in a podcast.
Since December 2005, I've created over 30 of my very own podcasts with over 3,600 podcast episodes. As you might imagine, I've become quite comfortable behind the microphone.
In fact, I've developed a method of creating content that I call “Live To Drive.” What this means is that I simply hit record on my recorder, I include everything I want to have in my episode, into the episode, as I am recording (including intro, outro or any other audio clips), and when I'm finished, I simply stop the recorder and I don't do any editing on the episode at all. In these “Live To Drive” episodes, my audience gets to hear everything that happened during to recording of the episode without a single edit.
Now with that said, there are still times when I record a podcast where, afterward, I think to myself… “hmmm, I might want to do a bit of editing on this.” There have been some episodes where I recorded for as much as an hour and fifteen minutes and, after editing, the final episode that was released was only 43 minutes in length, after I finished cutting out significant portions of audio during the editing process.
Recently, I recorded a lengthy audio segment that I knew I wanted to include in episode 497 of Podcast Answer Man / The Cliff Ravenscraft Show. After recording it, I knew that I wanted to do a “deep dive edit” on this recording before allowing it to be published to my audience.
I decided to fire up my Facebook Live Stream to share my editing process with my community. Those who were watching live and who have watched the replay on Facebook said that they found this over the shoulder look into my process very helpful.
For this reason, I've decided to the recordings from my Facebook Live Stream with you here. You'll notice that I broke the process into two separate Facebook Live Streams. The reason for this is that in the middle of editing, I needed to leave to go have dinner with my family. After I returned for dinner, I launched the second live stream and finished the editing of this audio segment.
In this week's episode, I talk about some of the thoughts shared in the first section of the book Thou Shall Prosper by Rabbi Daniel Lapin. Essentially, if you believe that making money is a selfish activity, it will undermine your chances of financial success. I hope that this episode will be a catalyst for helping you develop a deep conviction about the intrinsic morality of operating a business.
In this week's episode, I talk about having wealth, defined as “having more than you need to survive. For most of my life, I had considered wealth as a limited resource. I also grew up thinking the the pursuit of having more than I needed to survive was wrong.
By listening, you'll learn how my Christian upbringing actually fueled this warped
mindset about money and wealth. I also share one of the first pieces of online content that helped me understand that wealth is not a limited resource and that when you create products and services, and sell them, everyone becomes wealthier in the process.
In this week's episode, I share a podcast episode that inspired me greatly this week. I talk about how I can be super passionate about a topic that I want to cover in my show, but how that passion can die down if I put off recording about it for a few days.
And most importantly, I share a story about how I once felt shame for charging clients money for the valuable service that I provide. More importantly, I share how my mindset on this matter has changed over the years.
In this week's episode, I share some entrepreneurial thoughts that have been on my mind over the past week. I also share the number one skill that has helped me more than anything else as it relates to the growth and success of my online business.
One of the benefits of having a podcast is the ability to connect with people who you might not, otherwise, be able to connect with. By building a loyal audience around a particular niche focus, you have something of great value to offer to others. Exposure to your community.
Inviting leading industry experts, your favorite authors, etc. to be a guest on your podcast is a great way to build your personal and/or professional network. You also have the ability to gain a bit of credibility by association through the process.
However, if not done well, a podcast interview can harm a potential relationship and damage the credibility you have with your audience. Over the years, I have certainly made my fair share of mistakes when it comes to podcast interviews.
I devoted the second half of episode 315 of my podcast to providing a total of 22 tips to help improve your podcast interviews. I've taken the audio just from that portion of the episode, cleaned it up a bit with editing and embedded the audio file above.
I'm going to share the list of 22 tips below. However, if you listen to the audio, embedded above, you will hear me go into great detail about each of these tips. It's worth a listen if you have the time.
22 Tips To Improve Your Podcast Interviews
1. When inviting a guest for an interview, be sure to clearly communicate the name of your show, the website address of your show, and what your show is about.
2. Explain why you would like to have this guest on your show.
3. Clearly communicate how long you are requesting for the interview to take place.
4. Be prepared by offering at least two to three time slots for the guest to choose from. Be flexible if those are not a good fit for their schedule.
5. Once you confirm a date and time with your guest, be certain to communicate how the interview will be conducted. Provide applicable information such as phone number or Skype contact ID, etc, and clearly communicate who is going to initiate the call.
6. If the interview is scheduled more than a week in advance, be sure to send a follow up reminder one week prior to the scheduled interview.
7. Regardless of when the interview is scheduled, send a follow up reminder the day before the interview. Be sure to communicate, again, how the interview will be conducted, the contact information, and who will be initiating the call.
8. Be sure to include the time and TIME ZONE when sending requests and any confirmations or follow ups related to the interview.
9. Consider sending an outline of questions that you will cover in advance of the interview.
10. If something comes up on your schedule, that would conflict with your scheduled interview, do not put this off, immediately contact your guest and let them know. Make sure to confirm that they received your message about the conflict.
11. Always mark off at least 30 minutes before your scheduled interview to prepare for the call.
12. Call your guest ON TIME! Seriously, be very respectful of their time.
13. Do not go over your time scheduled for the interview.
14. Follow up with a thank you note. This can be done via email, but it has more impact when you send a card (or gift) by mail.
15. Be prepared to give an introduction of your guest rather than asking them to introduce themselves.
16. When asking a question, don’t continue speaking and answering the question for them.
17. Don’t interrupt your guest when they are speaking.
18. Don’t give verbal agreements to every statement that they make.
19. Avoid questions that allow for simple one word answers.
20. Have an idea of the main points you desire to have come out within the interview, ask questions that get you to reach those goals and allow the conversation to flow.
21. Listen to your guest while they are speaking.
22. Make sure to learn how to pronounce your guests name correctly.
I hope that these tips will help you make you a great first impression with those you interview on your podcast.
This post is a part of my weekly podcast development email newsletter. Every week, I share the best tips, advice, tools, techniques and strategies related to podcasting. Register today at http://podcastanswerman.com/newsletter.
Thank you for being a part of my community.
Until next time, I encourage you to take everything you do to the next level!
In this week's episode, I'm joined, once again, by my great friend, Mark Mason. Mark joined me to have a discussion about the various options that we had considered for implementing a email support ticket system into our online businesses and which one we both ended up using. We also talk about WordPress themes and a few other items that we've been working on to take our businesses to the next level.
Help Ticket Conversation starts at 00:07:05
WordPress Themes Conversation starts at 00:48:08
This week's episode is a bit unique. I was recently watching a SnapChat story from my friend, Sarah Stahl, where she was talking about how difficult it is to grow your own business. I can certainly relate to experiencing the struggles that one goes through when getting a business off the ground. However, Sarah shared that she had been working on her business for four years and that she was still struggling to figure out what next steps to take. This week's episode is almost like listening in on a coaching call between myself and Sarah.
Liz recently asked… “Hi Cliff! I have a question regarding being transparent, especially with things you're working on and the challenges/obstacles you face in your day-to-day work life. Do you ever worry about giving away the “secret sauce” about your biz as you're sharing what you're working on and your goals? Do you think that gives your competition an edge or gives someone an idea to do the same thing that you've shared you're working on?”
I share my answer to Liz in this week's episode of the podcast. I also share my thoughts related to Mark Mason's reaction to last week's Product Launch Fatigue episode.
In this week's episode, I invite my great friend, Ray Edwards, to join me for a conversation about something that has been on my mind a lot lately. There seems to be a growing trend, within the podcasting community, to pollute the content stream with excessive product promotion.
In this week's episode, I talk about the idea of including a little bit more of your personal life and thoughts into your podcast. I also talk about how I choose to prioritize my days, another amazing benefit of having a weekly email newsletter and thoughts on people who leave negative reviews on iTunes.
In this week's episode, I share why I have gone heavy into video production mode this week, what additional camera I would love to purchase and how awesome it is when content starts to feed other content. There's actually a whole lot more in there as well. I hope you enjoy.
Since December 2005, I've produced a total of 30 podcasts with more than 3,600 of my very own podcast episodes. One question that I'm asked quite often is… “How do you consistently come up with new content for your podcast(s)?”
I covered this topic in the middle of one of my podcast episodes a few years back. Rather than point you back to that old episode and have you forward to the spot where I talked about this topic, I went ahead and created the following audio file which contains just that portion of the episode. Have a listen.
Below is a list of the sources I mentioned
– Questions and comments from your community.
– News feeds from your niche.
– What struggle are you currently facing? Ask your community for help.
– What obstacle have you recently overcome? Share how you did it.
– What are people talking about in social media?
– Be on the lookout for stories in your every day life.
– Share the success of someone else.
– Invite a guest to come on your show for a “conversation.”
– Search the archives of others in your niche “for inspiration only.”
Earlier this year, I made a commitment that I would publish a new episode of this podcast by 5am on Friday, every week in 2016. I am happy to report that I have made good on this promise. Recently someone suggested that this type of commitment might come with problems, that for some, it might be better to go a week without an episode than to put out something that is “crap.” I processed my thoughts out loud in this episode.
Also in this episode, I share a breakdown on how I did on the goals that I had set for 2016, why I haven't been very “social” over the past few weeks and two gadgets that I'm excited about.
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