Michelle Elise Abraham
and Robert talk about Michelle’s get it done spirit, just figuring out how to solve a problem and get paid. She has started multi businesses and fell into podcasting and has really found her place, helping others create and launch successful podcasts to support their businesses.
A little bit about Michelle...
Michelle was speaking on stages about podcasting before most people knew what they were, she started a Vancouver-based Podcasting Group in 2012 and has learned the ins and outs of the industry. Michelle helped create and launched over 30 Podcasts in 2018 and has gone on to launch over 200 shows in the last few years, She wants to launch YOURS in 2022!
14 years as an Entrepreneur and 8 years as a Mom has led her to a lifestyle shift, spending more time with family while running location independent online digital marketing business for the last 9 years. Michelle and her family have been living completely off-the-grid lakeside boat access for the last 4 years!
Robert Peterson 0:00
Today's guest is Michelle Abraham, Podcast Producer, host and international speaker. Michelle was speaking on stages about podcasting before most people knew what they were. She started a Vancouver based podcasting group in 2012, and has learned the ins and outs of the industry. Michelle created and launched over 30 podcasts in 2018 and has gone on to launch over 200 shows in the last few years. She wants to launch yours in 20 2214 years as an entrepreneur and eight years as mom has led her to a lifestyle shift spending more time with family while running location independent online digital marketing business for the last nine years, Michelle and her family have been living completely off the grid, Lakeside boat access for the last four years. Michelle Abraham and Robert talk about Michelle's get it done Spirit figuring out how to solve a problem and get paid. She started multiple businesses and fell into podcasting, and has found her place helping others create and launch successful podcasts to support their businesses. Michelle, thank you so much for joining the show today. I'm excited to have this conversation.
Michelle Abraham 2:09
Hello, thanks for having me, Robert. I'm excited to be here.
Robert Peterson 2:12
Absolutely. I usually let our guests share their own entrepreneurial journey to give people a background and give us a starting point.
Michelle Abraham 2:21
My entrepreneurial journey started as a child, my dad was an entrepreneur. I got the inside scoop of what it was like to be an entrepreneur. Although a lot of our family members made fun of my dad, the joke was, what job is winning doing now? Or what? What business does he own now, there were so many of them. I got to see some ups and downs. I got to see some bankruptcies, I also got to see some successes. I got to see that throughout the whole thing. My dad was passionate about what he's doing. He loved working, and he allowed the adventure of it all. I thought, that's a great way of living no matter what. Even though there's some ups and downs, there's always that adventure part of it. My first business, I started when I was 26 years old, 2526 years old. That was in the fitness industry. I decided to have a boot camp location and it was called Urban hit. I put an ad in the newspaper. I hit $10,000. In my first month of business, I opened up this thing. I was like, wow, that was easy. That was a lot of fun. It kept growing. From there. We hit six figures in the first six months. I always wanted those businesses that were not sitting around waiting for customers. I was like, Holy crap, I have a lot of customers, what do I do with them? What are these systems I needed to put in place? What was the bank account I needed to open and what did I read about needing to register for everything, totally backwards from how most people start their businesses. That business taught me a lot of lessons we saw and moved into a studio. Then we grew to eight locations I licensed across our province. It was a lot of fun. That was my first experience.
Robert Peterson 4:13
Jump in there you mentioned you did it backwards. Run with this because so many entrepreneurs start out and they're so worried about getting the name and the logo and the picture and the colors, and then they get caught up in all of this stuff before they ever start. Then as soon as you start all of that stuff changes. You hold on to this logo that doesn't mean anything to your business. It doesn't fit the business that you're building. Doing it backwards you had some advantages, now you're an I Do customer because you got 100 of them. What your logo should look like because you can match it to what you're actually doing. There's some real advantages to doing it and thinking about it a little backwards, focus on what you're doing first, and then put a name on it, then put the colors on it, then put a logo on it, then go register it.
Michelle Abraham 5:22
That proof of concept first. We knew we had something good. Now we need to figure out all the back pieces, although that's challenging to do when you're busy. It was interesting how that happened. It was fun. We leapt and went with it, and didn't put too much thought into the whole year. At the beginning, we thought, let's try the six week camp first and see what happens. To our surprise, it went off like a rocket. It was a lot of fun. We learned a lot of things. Then slowly over the next couple of years, we started to put those foundations in place. Maybe we do need a website now. Maybe we need to register the company. We need to do things properly. At that particular point, it would have been nice to find someone who could tell me how exactly to set up the business finances properly. That would have been helpful at that moment.
Robert Peterson 6:22
Absolutely. That can be the challenge too. We're entrepreneurs a lot. A lot of times tend to think, I'm an expert, right? It's hard to ask for help.
Michelle Abraham 6:35
That reminds me of the E Myth. Where you're the expert. You start a business, then you find a manager, which isn't that good at being the manager. The E Myth, it was one of the first books I read in business because, I need to figure out how to, what does he call it in the book I forget, I was the technician. The technician that was good at doing the cannabis but not necessarily the bookkeeping?
Robert Peterson 7:04
Absolutely. Most entrepreneurs start that way. They don't have any idea what all the systems and processes that they need to have. A lot of times they get caught up in making the website and the social media plan and all of these things, and they're not doing the thing. At least you started out doing the thing. Then we figure out what we're missing. gaps.
Michelle Abraham 7:30
It was interesting. My next business is funny, those were my clients, those people that were so worried about all those things. My next business, as I started to have kids, the fitness studio was in a different town that I lived in. That commute became too much. I ended up selling that business. I opened up at a coworking space, and we happen to be the first co working space, this is 2013 first co working space outside of the downtown core area of Vancouver here. It was interesting, I opened it up with our friend, and we opened up this space. Now we know there is a reason why people don't need co working spaces in the suburbs, their houses are so big, and they have offices. Here we are with this big space and no one to come into it. It's funny, 10 years later, in that Saks exact same neighborhood, there's no 10 co-working spaces, we were just a little bit too far ahead of our time for that. In fact, we were trying to look for a daycare to be attached to the co-working space, specifically for new moms because we were new moms and this is what we were looking for. That was too ahead of bylaws and all this stuff. We have this co-working space. While we were there, not many people were co working. We ran some workshops and events and one of the workshops I ran was called the podcasters meetup groups. People would come and learn about podcasting and start to be interested in podcasting. I fell in love with podcasting. As a new mom, I would put my earbuds in, take my son for a walk and listen to all these episodes. I love this podcasting thing yet I look around and ask my mom friends, what podcasts you guys listen to and none of them know any. They weren't putting the podcast with you talking about, again, a little too early for the timing. We opened this co-working space and started doing workshops. Then I started getting all these people who needed help getting their business online. Digital marketing was needed. They went to either personal trainers or nutritionists or people who went to school for that technician and then they had to go out and do business and they didn't know how to do business. Thankfully for me I learned how to finally do business in the fitness industry. I was able to show them how to get their first customers and they didn't need a pretty website but how to do a funnel and all these all these all these marketing things that I had learned. I started a marketing consulting business. We were doing all things for everyone. It was so funny because they literally needed to keep being stuck in their head, they needed a pretty website before they could get customers. Exactly what you said earlier. He did that pretty website before looking at customers.
Robert Peterson 10:17
It is a procrastination excuse. Many use their website or the next thing or the next thing that isn't selling isn't selling their product or service. The reality is, that's where you should start selling your product and service, testing your product and putting your product and service out there. Then worry about all this silly backroom. Stuff like a website and a sales page and a marketing funnel. If you don't have an offer, a funnel is worthless.
Michelle Abraham 10:50
Absolutely. What are those pieces that go first? How do you get them going so that you can actually have a business write?
Robert Peterson 11:00
Testing them organically. We're all convinced, if I could make this funnel, if I could make this website, if I could have this piece, it would do all the work for you. You've got to know that your offer works, you've got to know that your offer provides the value that you're putting out there. The only way you can do that is to get people to do it and test it and buy it. Then once those things happen organically, then you can put all those systems into place, and they're going to work 10 100 times better. You've obviously created an offer that works.
Michelle Abraham 11:31
Absolutely. It was funny. Meanwhile I was helping other people figure out what I was doing, Robert, my business was quite funny. I look back at it now. I remember there was a point when one of my really good friends, Chris, and she's like, Michelle, I know you're good at what you do. She's like, I have no clue what you do for work. What I was doing was helping people with their funnels, their websites, their marketing, their podcasts, their publishing books, everything under the sun, under the marketing umbrella, I wasn't known for anything. This is where I was helping people do a lot of things, not helping my own business grow at that moment.
Robert Peterson 12:17
Similar to what your family said about your dad.
Michelle Abraham 12:19
Exactly. What exactly are you doing? What exactly do you do for your business? I remember that moment was like, oh, shoot, she's so Right. I'm not known for anything. Dropped absolutely everything that we're doing and I'm falling in love with podcasting at that moment. I saw podcasting slowly become more and more popular. It was in my car on my TV. It was in my earphones, a couple people said they do what podcasts were when I asked them. It's okay, there's something to this podcasting thing. Clients started asking us to help them with their podcasts. I dropped everything else and focused on podcasts. That was 10 years ago. We haven't looked back since then. Now we're known for podcasting. It's so much easier for people to refer to us, and so much easier for people to come to us to help them because now they know where the podcasting people are. I'm known for podcasting in the podcasting world. Now my friend who said that, she didn't know what I did. She's like, now I know you're the podcasting girl. That's cool. They know what podcasting is, it even makes it even cooler.
Robert Peterson 13:29
I know what you do. I know what it means.
Michelle Abraham 13:33
Right now. I saw it on TV, I saw that podcasting thing on TV.
Robert Peterson 13:38
Absolutely, obviously over the last two years, podcasts have taken off, a the number of people that were locked in their homes, and wanting to get a message out and in the possibility of, launching a podcast or putting a podcast out there, or at least having the extra eight hours in a day that you're stuck in your house to listen to a podcast have brought podcasts, 10 times 100 times from where they were prior to being locked up.
Michelle Abraham 14:11
Absolutely. I don't think a lot of businesses when all of a sudden they were home locked up. How are we going to speak to our customers? This was a bridge to start a relationship with those consumers from their homes from their home offices. We did lose quite a few listeners though because those people that were commuting back and forth everyday to work listening to podcasts are no longer community. We had a lot more people listening from their home now.
Robert Peterson 14:37
It is a challenge. I go between either podcasts or audible and in my audible credits piled up because there was a period where I'd lost my listening time that was normal in my car and commuting. I quit listening to podcasts and my audible books because I wasn't in the car anymore. It was a challenge to find that time in my schedule. Wait, I need to be more intentional about when I'm going to listen to these podcasts, catch up on these books. It was challenging.
Michelle Abraham 15:13
It's absolutely funny, my husband and I, both five years ago, decided that we were gonna be done with the rat race of the city. We sold everything. We moved to his family's property, which is on a lake. We actually live off the grid on our lake now where we have to take a boat to the car, and can't listen to podcasts on that boat. It doesn't work. It's too loud, it's too loud in my ear. That was disappointing. I lost my podcasts.
Robert Peterson 15:50
Dad gummit. I gotta listen to a book while the motor goes. I read a book that was actually challenging. Let's talk a little bit more about that idea of listeners or the idea that a podcast is another way to communicate with your customers. For years and years. It was the blog. Everybody needs to have a blog, if you have a business and you have a website, you better have a blog. Now, obviously, how much? How is a podcast? Take a blog to another level?
Michelle Abraham 16:25
That's a great question. It's interesting, actually, to see some statistics around the fact that there's actually more blog posts published in the last three days, and there are podcasts in existence. So big, more blogs out there. We were blogging in 2014. Now, with podcasting, where it's popular, it's growing. Helping your listeners, helping your listeners find you on your own website, your podcast needs to be embedded into a blog post too, it's the written content that is still being picked up by the search engines in order to help your podcast get discovered and found. If you're putting your player on your website, that's not helping you at all, if you put your player with a transcript in the show notes on your website, then you're helping your show be found a lot more. Then it actually looks like you're putting it as a blog post on your blog. The power of the written content is what's going to help your podcast grow a lot as far as the search engines go, they haven't quite figured out how to index the voice yet on Google, it's coming down the road very quickly. Once it does, then podcasters are going to be way ahead of everybody else.
Robert Peterson 17:49
Especially those podcasters that are doing video and audio. Obviously they're going to index both probably pretty fast. YouTube's going to index videos as part of their movement forward. It's gonna be next level.
Michelle Abraham 18:09
Podcast is all of a sudden way ahead of everybody else. Someone's audio content out there.
Robert Peterson 18:15
I hope so.
Michelle Abraham 18:16
You can still see it now. If you search for certain terms, you'll see podcast episodes now saying you're talking about Mercedes Benz in an episode. That episode can now be pulled out when people are searching Mercedes Benz as a podcast, which is great. That's really cool.
Robert Peterson 18:35
Absolutely. Recognizing the power of SEO and search engines and tying your podcast to that. How else do you encourage your clients to help their podcasts be found?
Michelle Abraham 18:51
Lots of great ideas of how to help your podcast get found. Of course, the basics are making sure you're publishing it consistently regularly. Making sure you've got some great titles that are captivating your audience. Using some keywords in the titles is helpful. Publishing show notes in transcripts are also helpful. Then once you've covered some of those basics, you're promoting it out on Twitter. The only reason I say Twitter is that's what the media is. The only reason to use Twitter, don't get mad. The only reason to use Twitter is where the media picks up things. You want to publish on Twitter, you never know when something can be new and newsworthy that people can pick up on Twitter, and follow all the news outlets on Twitter. The other thing you want to do with your show is publish it in places where your audience already is. For example, you could publish your podcasts on medium.com where there's millions of readers there every day. Then my favorite is getting yourself out on other podcasts to be interviewed to lead back to your podcast. There's nothing better than growing, Robert, remember back in the day where there was backlinking from websites. It's still a thing. I think of podcasting as the best backlinking thing out there. You've got a podcast, you go and be on other podcasts that link back to your podcast, creating that nice spider web out there. Content is working for you 24/7. Those are some of the things that I love to see our clients do to grow their podcast.
Robert Peterson 20:37
That's organic. backlinking. You're not forcing the SEO because you're actually and it increases Google's trust and confidence in you, this podcaster linked back to this podcast, or they're both podcasters talking about business, boom, boom, boom. Google's elevating you based on not the fact that you have backlinks. The fact that those backlinks amplify your authority is so powerful.
Michelle Abraham 21:07
Absolutely. That's one other tip I would give on that specific topic is make sure when sending those links out to the other podcast, make sure it's a link, that's never going to change. Even if whatever on the page changes, that link always stays the same. I know we've changed websites, they've changed the links, and it's such a pain to go back between all the 200 or 300 episodes we've done and change those links. Also all the ones that are out there. They're not valid anymore, either. Something that one of my coaches shared with me that he does, he's got a domain name, something easy, a free gift from robert.com, or something that says easy never changes. It's a way that people can always find you.
Robert Peterson 21:51
That's really powerful. If you're constantly changing your links, changing your domains, changing things around, you're messing up your backlinks, you're messing up your SEO and messing up the history that Google honors to elevate your authority. Google really does No, right. If you're backlinking to a bunch of random pages, Google knows and they will see that these aren't real websites, or these aren't authority figures. If your backlinks to the people that have been guessing your show, and then your backlink to the shows that you've been a guest on, and those are all legitimate pages that are growing and getting traffic, on Google's going, we like this, boom, boom, boom. Like you said, it creates that spider web, you want to create a spider web that doesn't get cut up. Once it starts getting picked up, Google goes up that links bad credibility. For Google credibility is everything. Google doesn't want people to click on something that's popped up on Google saying, Hey, this is a great place to answer your question. They click it and it doesn't work. Google doesn't want that. Google absolutely is in the business of helping people find what they want to find. That's their job. At the links, quit work in Google is going to drop you like a brick. People don't recognize how powerful that is. That is a big deal. If you have broken links, and then you go and break your own links. Google definitely won't be elevating you anytime soon.
Michelle Abraham 23:29
One of the great things about podcasting, it's out there working for you, 24/7, which is good. You have people going there all the time, people always going to listen. That's helpful, there's constant traffic over there, if you're posting something on Facebook, it's gone in 18 seconds, if you can even get people to stop and scroll and look at it. Whereas component two, podcasting is amazing. People there are listening to 24/7 Tear shows, which is amazing.
Robert Peterson 24:02
Absolutely. That's the piece where that consistency is so important. Putting consistent content. If you're dropping content on a Monday, at nine o'clock, then you should be dropping it Monday at nine o'clock. People get used to your schedule and they're going to be waiting for it. If they're your loyal listeners. It doesn't drop that next day, the next week, the next time, they're waiting, they're going to skip it and they're going to find somebody else pretty fast.
Michelle Abraham 24:30
I can tell you as a listener of how I first got it started and listening to podcasting, it was a show called The eventual millionaire. I had become a new mom and my brain was in that funk of new mom postpartum depression, probably trying to get voted on hashtag and trying to get motivated to do anything again. I found this little purple app on my TV and it got me excited and I started listening to these great shows. Then I realize I can take them with me on my phone. I put my earbuds in and take my son for a walk. Every Monday morning, if that show didn't drop on a Monday morning when I was at that vulnerable stage of my life, What do you mean, there was no show on Monday, I'm here, I've got my earbuds in and ready to take my son for a walk. There's no shower.
Robert Peterson 25:17
It is that consistency that is important that you've created an expectation and you're building an audience that you want to honor. When your audience is out there looking for you, you want to be there when they expect you to be there. We were used to schedules, we have a TV schedule. I know that some people have gotten away from that where Netflix is. Now I know that some people wait until an entire series is out or entire season is out so that they can binge it, you can go from one to another to another. The truth is there's some that wait for the episodes to drop, and they want it to be there when it drops. Consistency can be really powerful.
What's another area where podcasters need to be consistent?
Michelle Abraham 26:31
Consistency with publishing on a regular basis, consistency with your messaging, if you're speaking to cat lovers one week, and then you're speaking to dog lovers the next week, that's not super consistent. You want to make sure you're attracting the right people for the right message. Being consistent with the way you're speaking to your audience as well. Name the audience that was helpful. We have amplified your family that we talked to you on another podcast I do as part of Hulu Xeons. There are people that come into the pod Palooza event. Naming your audience makes it fun, and then speaking to that one person speaks to one person who is in the audience every time you're speaking, then you will feel like you're speaking directly to them in their earbuds.
Robert Peterson 27:25
That's really important, it is not just name your audience, know your message. Make sure that your message is honoring that audience, for entrepreneurs that challenge, and I assume we're gonna call podcasters entrepreneurs at this point. If you're listening to this show, and you're thinking about a podcast, it means it's as entrepreneurial as being an author is and so that idea of niching down or narrowing down, for some people, I want to help everyone write it. They feel like if I narrow it down too far, I won't get enough people. Actually it's the opposite. That's true.
Michelle Abraham 28:11
True. I also feel that there's something that happens in podcasting. There's this voice that gets more and more clarity and more and more confident, the more you use it. There's a little bit of something called pod fade. I don't know if you've heard about this, Robert, pod fade happens in podcasting for a few different reasons. Pod fade means that you didn't make it past like episode 20. Put your feet out after episode 20 or before Episode 20. Only 75% of shows don't make it past episode 20. Pod feed is real. They're exactly what you said there's a way you can get around the pod feed. That is using your voice to get more clarity and more confidence in who you're speaking to. Don't be afraid to pivot your show. Keep your show, when I first started podcasting, I thought my show needed to be this. Then it couldn't change over time, even though my evolution is personal development and also, evolution of my business changed. My podcast was still way back here. Now we call this something like realignment, relaunching and keeping your business in your podcasts at the same time realigning and re-calibrating your podcasts to keep up with your voice and your evolution of your market as time goes on in your podcast.
Robert Peterson 29:37
Let's get back to more greatness. Let's chat about that a little bit as, obviously, it's like when we talked about your first business. You started the fitness boot camps, and you're doing the boot camps. You figured out your audience by selling your product and putting it out there. Now you're talking about a podcaster. As you get past those 20 episodes, it might be necessary to rebrand and relaunch. Is that what you're saying?
Michelle Abraham 30:42
Recalibrate a little bit. You started off thinking that you were going to be talking about let's say entrepreneurs. Talking to all entrepreneurs out there, as the more you go on, you're only talking to entrepreneurs that are making over six figures. That's your audience. That's a great time for a new season. Second season, if you're more specifically talking to entrepreneurs over six figures, third season is something different, allowing you to keep your show going. You can refer back to the first season. If you don't over six figures, go back to the beginning and listen to what we talked about in season one. It's a good way to keep your show going without it having to stop and be like, no, I don't talk about that anymore, I have to start this all over again. Or I have to abandon the show altogether. That's one of the ways that you can keep your show going and keep it relevant. We have four episodes that we do that will help you relaunch and recalibrate your show. Anytime that you can plug those in either at the beginning or the new season or anytime you want to recalibrate your show. What it does is it brings people back to your story, why you guys started, what you're doing, what your framework is for working with people, and how then they can, in some cases studies and some people that will help you showcase models, what you're, how you're helping people. Those are four episodes that we drop in anytime that we need to recalibrate,or rewrite.
Robert Peterson 32:08
You're gonna give us what those four episodes are?
Michelle Abraham 32:11
The first one is your overview of your story, your origin story, how you got started, and what was the struggle that you had, that your listeners are now also struggling with. Then you discovered something that helped you overcome that struggle. That's episode two, we talked about the framework of what you use to help people or get through these struggles. For example, if we're talking about podcasting, I would say, we discovered that to have the five pieces in order to have a successful podcast launch, and that would be creating it, launching it, marketing it, managing it and monetizing it, those are the five things that you need in the podcast. Episode two would be going through that framework, episode three, then you would want to bring in some people that you've helped go through that framework, or some stories of yourself going through it or other people going through it. That's episode three. Why you're bringing in other people as you're going to help them, to show them some internal beliefs that you're going to conquer, it won't work for me. The anxiety niche that doesn't work for me, or this nice, that won't work for me. You're going to help them overcome some of those objections, by sharing stories of people who have overcome those things that they're thinking. Then number four is the money and time and audience. The external objections, how you could overcome some of those things, I don't have time to do a podcast, podcasting is going to be too expensive. All those things. I don't have any audience who's going to listen to me, you would overcome those things in the fourth episode, all while you're building a relationship. These four episodes allow you to build the foundation again. Then in relationship with your audience, to get to know you, again, where we find this specifically very helpful, is if you were someone that jumped into your podcast and started interviewing people right away, you haven't allowed the audience to get to know you. Therefore, this is a good time to put these four episodes into the audience to get to know you.
Robert Peterson 34:16
Nice. Now you threw another five steps in there and you snuck them in. You talked about the five steps for a podcast or to launch a podcast. Now I'm going to ask you to share
Michelle Abraham 34:31
We can unpack this. It's five main pillars to having a successful podcast and we call it profitable podcasting, having a profitable podcast means not necessarily that you're monetizing it through ads and sponsorships. You're getting tons of downloads. The profitable podcast means that you were reaching your show in your business and are connected together and you're able to make it work as a combination of both myths and podcasts. The first one would be creating the show. There's a few steps that go involved with that, getting the messaging down, making sure that you have something that you are excited to talk about for more than five episodes. The creation of the show, the launching of the show. Once you've created the show, you've got all the assets you need, then we want to launch it, and we want to launch it with a bit of momentum. We want to get other people involved in the show, we want to create a bit of movement with the show. In launching the show, and after you've launched the show, you better figure out how to keep it going. The podcast management comes in. This piece right here, Robert is why I have a business in the podcasting space is once people launch, it's a little bit of work to keep it going. It was fun getting it started. Then realizing you got to do it every week basis. Where we help our podcasters, we take on the management part. They send us the files after they record, we do all the Publishing and Editing and syndicating and show notes and all that other stuff. They don't have to worry about any of that stuff. The management is a big piece of it. The management is important in order for it to keep going.
Robert Peterson 36:20
Absolutely, they won't fix themselves.
Michelle Abraham 36:24
Then you need a strategy to get yourself out there. Give yourself other marketing for your show. Believe it or not, the number one way that most shows are still found is by word of mouth, which I find so surprising. Word of mouth is still the number one way a podcast is found. Getting yourself out there and putting yourself back onto podcasts marketing your show, marketing is our fourth pillar here. That means marketing your show organically on other platforms, and getting your show consistently marketing, on platforms where your audience is already there. Then the fifth one is monetization. Once you've got those first four pillows, pillars of the foundational setup, the last one is monetization. Creating a way that your business in your podcast will connect together and the call to action from the podcast bridging people over into your business.
Robert Peterson 37:23
Nice. That's where the rubber meets the road. You can have a lot of stuff going on in your podcasts, until it amplifies your authority to the point of creating a client relationship. You're just out. There are lots of podcasts that are out there talking. Some of the most popular podcasts aren't necessarily business podcasts, there's murder mysteries and books or movies or stories, and all of those. I didn't know any of those existed before I started podcasting. Then I started podcasting and started seeing the podcasts lists and directories. What on earth is all this stuff?
Michelle Abraham 38:07
It's interesting. Those I would call podcasts. Those podcasts are businesses themselves. They're making money through the ads and sponsorships. The podcast is the business itself, where you and I work with people who are entrepreneurs, they already have a business, they don't need another business. They need their podcast to help feed that business with leads. We're using it as a different tool. It's interesting the whole world in the podcasting space itself, focused on download numbers, that it doesn't say that download numbers aren't that important. Is what you do on the podcast and Wait, how do you talk about a guest and who you connect with on the podcast? That is what moves the entrepreneurs podcasts? What moves the needle for them?
Robert Peterson 38:58
Absolutely. It's easy to get pulled into this podcaster world and get caught up in the podcast, download numbers and try to. I get offers all the time, mostly on Instagram of people that want to bump my numbers. I can pay $100 and get 2500 downloads and five reviews and I'm like, wait, what? If you get caught up in the numbers, the numbers become the thing, then you figure out ways to cheat the numbers and you're not getting the result that you ultimately want.
Michelle Abraham 39:45
We said have you ever? 520 500 New downloads. People who don't understand English or aren't gonna use your services anyways. Not really helpful.
Robert Peterson 39:57
No, not at all. I've had two other tumors recorded. Our 200th Episode drops August 9. We're in a relationship. It's a really cool thing. The idea of numbers comes in, and it's only happened twice. I've had two people that I've invited to be guests and they say, what are your download numbers? One sent me their standard and said, You know what 10,000 downloads per episode before this person will come on your show? I'm like, you're only going to see the top point of half a percent of entrepreneurs, business podcasts, 10,000 downloads per episode is epic level.
Michelle Abraham 40:54
You'll have a good time listening to all the podcasts.
Robert Peterson 40:58
No doubt. For me, that number is sure it's a goal. Maybe, if I've got 10,000 downloads, I won't need you as a guest anymore.
Michelle Abraham 41:13
Exactly. It's very interesting. I have a client who is well known. He's a celebrity, he will go on any and every podcast, he's like, I don't care if 100 people are listening, or 10,000 people are listening. Someone needs to hear my message. That's all that matters.
Robert Peterson 41:36
The majority. Like I said, I've interviewed hundreds of people now, including very big names you’ve interviewed too.
Michelle Abraham 41:41
Exactly. We've had great connections.
Robert Peterson 41:45
Every connection gives us more connections. That's been a powerful piece of podcasting. If you're listening, and you're starting a podcast, and you're worried that I only have 100 downloads that we have, the majority of people don't ask. Including celebrities, the majority don't ask. Then if you get a celebrity to introduce you to a celebrity or an influencer, to introduce you to an influencer, they definitely don't ask because they're going on the person, on the quality of the interview and the quality of the conversation. They're saying, hey if Bob loved the show, and Bob said, I should be on the show, then I trust Bob, and I want to meet you and I want to be on the show. 99% of the people I get introduced to that's where they're coming from. All you have to do is ask if you want somebody to be a guest on your show, ask. The other cool thing I've done, and I know, Evans loves this, I'm sure you will, too. On the bottom of my email, I have a Google Sheet attached as my treatment.
Michelle Abraham 42:47
Most of them take a look to see if I can connect you with any of them.
Robert Peterson 42:51
Most of those people I've reached out to at least once and here's some rejections, most you get ignored. One of my guests reached out to somebody that I had reached out to and said, I was on this really great show. He's got a dream 100 You're on his dream 100. You'd make a great guest. That person said yes, as my guest made that connection. I had made the connection and I'd already chatted with his assistant and we were always kicking it down the road. He's busy, he's this, he's that, of my guest's endorsement, and she was a local coach, just like me, and she did it on the whims. Hey, I loved your book, and it's really great. Boom, here's this connection. You never know how these connections are going to happen. That's one of the most powerful things about podcasting. The number one reason that I started my podcast was because I can get voices in front of my audience in front of my clients that would never sit down with me and have a conversation and would never take a phone call from me for half an hour. Yet I can call and say, Hey, I've got this podcast for entrepreneurs, I'd love to have a conversation. They'd be like, Sure, no problem. Most give me an hour, some of the celebrities give you 30 minutes, even 30 minutes is like, fantastic. These are conversations I'm having with multimillionaires that like I said, would never take a phone call
Michelle Abraham 44:25
I say I have a parenting podcast. I say to my friends, I get hundreds of hours of free parenting coaching.That's why I do that podcast. Much better mom, it's the main reason I do that.
Robert Peterson 44:41
I will tell you that the majority that dream 100 is because I want to have a conversation with these people. I want to learn from them. Absolutely. I know if I'm learning from them, then the people listening are going to learn stuff. That's what's so fantastic about it. It's so powerful of a connection tool. Let's Talk about connecting and the power of connecting. For those people, especially those that are afraid to reach out to influencers and celebrities to have conversations.
Michelle Abraham 45:10
One of the best tools to be able to do that is to have a podcast play, you're reaching out, you're leading with service. You're offering them a platform to come on to your giving verse, which is why you don't often hear people say, no, thanks. No, you always hear I would love to be on the podcast. Thank you very much. When can we schedule it? It is the easiest way to open doors to conversations. I specifically have two different kinds of shows on my podcast to amplify you. One is called behind the mic. Behind the mic, I only interview podcasters. I interviewed two types of podcasters, one that we've worked with. I get to showcase them and talk about them and elevate them. I interview people who we don't work with in hopes that they might need some help or some support, and we might be able to work with them afterwards. Two types of podcasters. on that show. The other type of interview we do on that show is called Ask the Experts. I bring experts who can help podcasters grow their business. Those people are my joint venture partners, my collaborators. That's how Evans and I actually met through interviews on each other's podcasts. Now we have a business together. There's so many different ways that you can use your podcast, not only focused on the download numbers, and your amazing audience, but also leveraging the tool of the podcast to open doors and build relationships with other people. I was at a pod fest a few weeks ago, and was speaking there. It's interesting, not many people are talking about that. Not many people are talking about the power of connecting with the people through your podcasts that grow your business. It's the best networking tool out there, you don't no longer have to have coffee dates, you no longer have to have awkward zoom calls with people you don't know, to get to know each other, you invite them on your podcast. You'll get to know what people you want to have a second conversation with.
Robert Peterson 47:05
One of the most powerful ways to monetize a podcast is to interview your ideal clients.
Michelle Abraham 47:11
Absolutely, yes, that's another way of doing it
Robert Peterson 47:15
If you interview your ideal clients, and at the end of an episode, you say, man, it sounds like your business is doing this and this and I can help you take it even a step further, I'd love to have a conversation, boom, you've created an opportunity to take it to another level. One of the challenges you mentioned, you're offering them a platform. You're giving first, for a beginning podcaster at least I know for me, I felt those guys were doing me a favor in the beginning. I had to switch that mindset to know I'm doing them a favor, I'm giving them a platform. That shift in my mindset of my podcast is valuable. I'm giving them a platform to reach my audience. They couldn't reach my audience if I didn't open that door for them. That value is a big deal.
Michelle Abraham 48:07
Huge. You're all about adding value. This was a huge way to add value. It's interesting too, it's a different mindset. I love being on podcasts when they're brand new, the first 20 episodes are the most listened to episodes ever. People are people, some people are linear, they have to go back and listen to the first episodes first before they can move on. Those first 20 episodes are always listened to. Even if you heard me When beginning, who's gonna say yes to me? Start with who you know already. Just go easy. Make it easy on yourself. Have some great conversations with people you already know, already in your circle. Or people who say yes to everyone. There were great people to have on then you get comfortable you find your voice if then invite on the people that you're a little bit more nervous to invite. I loved that in the first few episodes. Like you said, like I said, the very most listened to episodes.
Robert Peterson 49:07
Not in the beginning. In the beginning, there's three like your mom, your cousin that you watch and that's when it's tough. When you feel oh, I got three downloads. I got two downloads in that episode and I'm pretty sure one of them was me because I opened it on Audible. It can be discouraging but the cool thing about that as you're getting your wings you're getting practice asking the questions you're getting practice having the conversation and not fumbling around and you're finding your voice you're finding the things that I want to talk about, the things that I want them to share? That's a great time to get good practice. What's funny is those become your most listened to episodes and don't take them for granted. Invest in it, do the rest, do work, make sure that you're putting good stuff out there, it's only going to get better and better.
Michelle Abraham 50:07
I'll leave a saying and amplify you. If not, I'm embarrassed by your first few episodes, you waited too damn long to put them out there. That goes to show you any one of us can look back at our first few episodes least toxic, we didn't know what we're doing. We got better over time. Even if you go back and listen to Joe Rogan's first episodes, they suck. He's psyched. He wasn't very good. Don't be afraid, don't let that stop you. Another, to the point, only a few people listening. The cool thing about podcasting now is that there's millions of listeners on the platforms already. The second, your show goes on and gets your show on all 5060 platforms, there's already people listening. You'll have more than your mom and yourself listening. Don't worry, there will be people there and that number will grow over time, you might even get 20 people there at first, there might even be 20 people that will randomly find your show. Then that will grow. I have seen clients show growth month over month, and it hits this point where it starts doubling month after month. It's cool to see. It's those calls that you get where the podcasters have been doing for a while. They knew this was working because I got an A phone call to enroll somebody in my coaching program. They said they listened to the last 100 episodes there. Where do I sign? There's no sales conversation, they don't know You're their person, you're the person for them.
Robert Peterson 51:45
That's so powerful. You mentioned something in there that I didn't learn until almost episode 160 and I got injured. Obviously I'm doing it, I'm doing what you guys are doing, doing what you guys teach. I put my episodes out there. I'm also getting on podcasts to promote my podcast. I was a guest on someone's show. The very first instruction on their Calendly link is go listen and review the show. I'm like, Duh. I've had all these guests on in the first conversation machine with many of them. I listened to one or two episodes, it was great. I said, Did you leave a review? Did you repeat it? Make sure who you leave a review and you rate it because that's valuable for especially an apple and a couple of you. It's important to know, but getting your guests. If I've had 200 guests on the show and got 200 guests that listened to at least one episode, that increases the download numbers.
Michelle Abraham 52:51
Absolutely, I look back, I do the same thing on my show. I ask them for a review. Surprisingly, how many people don't like me? I should have at least 200 reviews on my show. I don't. It's disappointing that people even when you ask them to do it, they still don't do it. I did. Robert, I did give you a review. I promise. I loved your show. I did listen, love the one with John Michell, John's one of my mentors. So cool how he's taken the book Think And grow rich and turned it into such a scientific, formulaic thing that works. I'm going through that program with him now.
Robert Peterson 53:30
That's fantastic. On that note, one of the things we love to talk about is gratitude. The value of gratitude, also routines. Obviously if you're working through John's materials, you're creating new routines, how routines helped you in your business and in your personal growth?
Michelle Abraham 53:48
Let me tell you, I fought against routine in order and schedules for a long time. I've got into a business so I can do whatever I want whenever I want. Robert, the more routine you're in, the more structured you are the actual more free time you have. I did probably the first 10 years in business to realize that. I spend a lot of time being messy with it all. Now I have certain days that I have free time to work in my business. Certain times I do thinking as part of John's program, it's two days that we think for an hour or we don't do anything else. I have my to do list every day. I have my three things that I accomplished and check off. Having a routine, for first and foremost, knowing where I want to go. That's going to be the first place because we can do all these routine things. If we don't know what we're doing and where we're going, we're not going to go anywhere. Having some goals in mind First was getting a no.
Robert Peterson 54:56
Absolutely. As we've talked about routines, and you mentioned your time and wanting that freedom, I want to ask about how important is playing fun?
Michelle Abraham 55:08
It’s so important. I'm having this lesson brought back up again recently, I went through a huge business growth phase in the last six months. I haven't had a lot of fun playing in my life. I was feeling that part of me compressed a little, I was so focused on work. I find work fun. I don't feel I'm missing fun. Until someone said, What would you like to do? When I started working, I was like, usually I like to do this, this and this, haven't done any of that for a long time. I was like, we went on a family vacation to Alaska a few weeks ago on a cruise ship. That helps bring back some fun. We're taking my kids camping next week. We live on a lake. We are able to jump in and start swimming again, and being out on the boat and having some more fun in our life.
Robert Peterson 56:05
Let's talk about one of the powers of entrepreneurship is that freedom is that ability to design the life that you want. No what you want, and then build the business to support it. Now it sounds like you've gotten distracted from that. You recognize the ability to build your business to support the life that you want to have.
Michelle Abraham 56:27
Absolutely not the other way around. It's interesting, sometimes the work success is bigger and better and more and more things. More things sometimes distract you from why you went into business in the first place. When I started missing some of the kids like field trips or after school things, I was like, wait a second hold it. This was the whole reason for doing this so I don't miss those things. Looking at what was working in our business, what was causing too much work. Where we needed to refocus. One of the things that I'm excited about is that we've turned our focus into running some retreat. I'm calling them retreats, they're not really retreats. I call it content creation camps, where we're going to go to Mexico two times a year. We're going to do something called a content creation camp. We're going to record all of our content for social media, and podcasts and YouTube videos and stuff all in a one week period in Mexico. The replays have a recording CD on it. To me that's adding tons of more fun is adding a new revenue stream, I also get to travel which is one of my favorite things to do. To me that added a whole nother level of excitement and fun into my business that's also going to bring in revenue.
Robert Peterson 57:45
Ah, love that. You mentioned a little bit about what you love to do with your family. What do you love to do with your kids?
Michelle Abraham 57:53
Oh my gosh, I love being out in the water with my kids. We do a lot of swimming. We live on the lake kayaking, swimming, and paddleboarding. My kids are getting into wakeboarding, and wake surfing. That's a lot of fun. I love going for hikes in the forest. We're a really outdoorsy family.
Robert Peterson 58:13
Nice. Michelle, what's the big dream?
Michelle Abraham 58:17
The big dream, it's coming to fruition. I need to start dreaming bigger. As I mentioned before, sometimes when you don't know where you're going, you need to get some bigger goals. I did have a goal. A couple years ago, speaking internationally, I accomplished that goal. I had a goal of publishing a book. That's going to be my next goal. My next book that I'm working on is to be a published author. Our big vision with amplify you is to help a million voices be heard through the power of podcasting.
Robert Peterson 58:53
Wow, fantastic. Michelle, I've spent an hour with a podcaster. Listening to the show, and you want to leave him with Michelle's words of wisdom. What would you share?
Michelle Abraham 59:03
Oh, my gosh. We both Robert and I said in this episode, how we wish we'd started sooner than we did. Don't wait until all your ducks in a row. Getting going first. It's like riding a bike without training wheels. Press record and start recording doesn't have to be for anything in particular, start recording. Once you get comfortable doing that, then think about publishing the podcast, press that record button sooner than you were ready for it. You'll be glad you did.
Robert Peterson 59:32
Absolutely. Michelle, thank you so much for hanging out with me and having this great conversation. I appreciate you and all the value that you've shared with our audience today.
Michelle Abraham 59:41
Thanks so much for having me, Robert. Thank you so much for listening. You're amazing.