Episode 2 – Full transcript
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- Gary Vaynerchuk – Generally
- Gary Vaynerchuk on “Document, don’t create”
- Energy and coffee
- The 20 Second Rule
- Harvard Medical School
- ……..many others. Just google for hundreds of articles.
So this is a podcast about how to make a hit podcast in the 2020s from your home computer while holding down a full time job and not having the backing of a production company. The internet says it’s possible. I’m trying to find out if it is, and if so, how.
[00:00:17] Hello and welcome to the second edition of this new format podcast that I’m doing.
[00:00:21] So far, we’ve looked at the immediate failure you are heading for if you tried to set up a podcast, certainly from my experience and for 99% of other podcasts is this whole problem of pod fade where people give up after, on average, eight to 10 episodes.
[00:00:35] I’m covering this in detail at the beginning because it’s something I’ve experienced several times before, and if we can’t get through that, if we make a few episodes and give up, we are never going to make a hit podcast.
[00:00:45] So it’s almost irrelevant picking the topic until we’ve covered these things. So what I’m doing with this particular podcast is I’m testing everything out on myself. I’m looking at all the advice out there on the internet, and I’m saying what actually works.
[00:00:58] I’m about a cynical and jaded as you can be now with podcasting. I’ve tried it, and as I say a few times, my first ever project went on for a year, and it was a YouTube show, which kind of was mixed with all kinds of media and that did quite well. Got over a million views by the end of it over the series. But then since then, I’ve done five other podcasts and all of them have petered out at different levels.
[00:01:19] So what I’m trying to do is find out how to get over pod fade. So let’s talk about the Roundup of the past two weeks of the updates I’ve been doing on my social media where I’ve shared each of the core tips.
[00:01:30] So let’s, let’s just run through some of this. The first one, is the one arrow, and this is one of the things that I came across right at the beginning of, I think the first week of covering this particular issue.
[00:01:42] The one hour role goes like this. You can do no more. Absolutely no more than one hour on podcasting per day. You stop whatever happens after one hour stop, completely. And the difference this makes is that with podcasting, you naturally start to think of all the different things that you can do with a podcast and you just make this gigantic to-do list, this massive to do this and every time you sit down at the end of a long day at work, you’ve just got to yourself – “Oh my gosh, you know, how am I going to do all this?” And all it takes is one moment of that of you saying “Oh my gosh”, and you’ll never do it. And you quickly give up and you quickly fade.
[00:02:18] But setting one hour, it creates this sort of, energetic tension in yourself. It sounds like a bit of an airy fairy word, but quite literally you get to the end of it and you’re frustrated because you are having to stop and that makes you then want to start the next session. And I have found this has been the most powerful and simple technique I’ve found. It’s actually quite difficult to stick to, but it’s been really good.
[00:02:39] But look, there are loads more techniques I’m going to run through from the past two weeks. The second one I learned from week one was “document don’t create”.
[00:02:47] So if you want to sit down and spend years, as some people have that I’ve mentioned before, building a series of podcasts, like one particular example I gave was they spent two years building an episode series and if you want to do that, then great. That’s your motivation. But for me, I need to get stuff out. I need to see little bits of success. And I think this is true for a lot of people. You want to see something moving and something happening. So instead of sitting down and trying to create this grand podcast, or trying to organize the most amazing guests and spending weeks trying to get it on there, one of the easiest ways of starting is by documenting rather than creating.
[00:03:23] Creating is where you. Create all that extra content document is where you literally live the life that you’re trying to get across in your podcast. So if you are an entrepreneur, this is the idea I got from Gary Vaynerchuk, who I mentioned previous in the social media. If you are generally living a life, which is learning things which you can share with others, then you don’t have to write a grand script.
[00:03:47] You can literally share what you are learning as you do it. So you document it. In an easier sense, you make an audio diary of what you’re doing, and as a result, you don’t have to sit down and plan. You just literally, get across what you are doing.
[00:04:01]A podcast to me, I think for a lot like new year’s resolutions. When you start them, and you have this great grand idea about what you want to achieve with it, and yet after a short amount of time, you stop.
[00:04:12] So what I’ve done over the past two weeks is I really focused on some of the techniques that are advised by some of the big medical organizations and psychology organizations on how to keep going with our new year’s resolutions. Because as I say, I think they’re very, very similar. And I’ve been trying them out on myself.
[00:04:29] Let me give you a couple of examples of the sources I actually looked at. So there’s like Harvard medical school, there’s the American psychology association. There were all kinds of books on motivation, like the, happiness advantage.
[00:04:40]So let me pull out some of these other techniques that I’ve tried on myself over the past two weeks, and you might want to actually pause the audio and write down your own answers as well.
[00:04:49] The first technique was that everyone said dream big first. And I know that sounds like a contradiction to the whole idea of simplifying things that I was talking about in the first week, but for example, Harvard medical school says you really have to dream big first. You know, what is your grand vision? What will it be like when you have success? So what I did here was I wrote down three to four sentences, which summed up my vision, the big vision. At the end of it.
[00:05:14] And in fact it actually took me a lot, lot longer to write than I thought it would. I sat down initially and I did it in two minutes, and I suspect if you pause the audio now and you write down three, four sentences on your grand vision, you’d probably think I’ve got it. I know what it is. But it’s interesting because over the next 24 hours before I reported back on social media about what I came up with, I actually found myself rewriting it and tweaking it and tweaking it again, because it starts to play around in your head.
[00:05:37] It’s like, “what actually do I want from my podcast?” Let me read you what I came up with and maybe it’ll compare with you. It could be completely different. So what I said was in two years time, I want to have a show with a thousand regular listeners.
[00:05:51] Who’ve got genuine value from the work and research I’ve done. What that means is that the show would have inspired at least 50 ordinary people to take up podcasting who’ve also kept going with their podcast too. I want to be a champion of the ordinary podcaster doing it from their home. I also want to be able to talk at podcast events around the world about what I learned on how ordinary people can succeed, assuming of course that I do!
[00:06:13] This is my goal remember, this is my vision of what I would like. It’s not necessarily what I’m going to achieve, but this is what my goal, this is what’s going to drive me. This is so that I can share ideas with people like me, but also so I can learn from the best and test their ideas and share what I find with you, the audience.
[00:06:29] So that’s my two year vision. What’s yours? If you like pause the audio and write down yours. I’ve got nothing against big production companies. By the way, I used to work for big news outlets.
[00:06:39] It’s just, it’s a market that is very well served with expertise and I want to help get more voices heard in this cause you can feel that podcasting could get very centralized into a few well-off production companies.
[00:06:52] I also got given a voucher at Christmas for an organization called “The School of Life” in London, UK, in fact, around the world. And one of the questions that they asked on this course, which was kind of about assessing your life, was if you could not fail, what would you do? And I think it’s a really simple question that, but one which I found to be really useful.
[00:07:13] So the big vision is done. So what do you do next? And next step is the small vision. So it’s doing the complete opposite. It is writing down, starting to write down how are you going to get to that big vision? So what I did was I took a two week goal and a three month goal.
[00:07:29] So my three month goal is this, I want to have 50 regular listeners. After three months, that might sound small, but when I started my first project, it took months for the listeners to even start to register seriously.
[00:07:43] And then it got, as I say, over a million views. So it starts off small and then explodes from there. I want to release at least six weeks of updates to the podcast weekly and update the daily social media updates as well. I’d also like to go to two podcasts meetups and try to speak at one of them as well about what I’ve learned if I’ve actually learned something of value as well.
[00:08:03] My two weeks goal, is to keep up to date with the daily updates and refine them based on what you’re saying and what I’m finding works, and to , test every exercise on myself, every single one to overcome pod fade.
[00:08:15] And as I say, so far that’s been working for me. So what are your two week and three month goals? Maybe you like to pause the audio and have a look at that.
[00:08:23]So let’s have a look at some of the other techniques. The next one actually came from an article I was reading from a place called mental floss, but it was about a technique called the “20 second” rule and this comes from a guy called Shawn Achor, the author of The Happiness Advantage and what he discovered is that just 20 extra seconds of activation effort, the energy it takes to get started is enough to cause most people not to do an activity.
[00:08:50] So the faster, easier you make it to set up what you’re doing, the more likely you are to continue. So for me, setting up my video each day. Was a process, but now I’ve got the camera in place and I’ve literally got a power bank next to me and I can click six five switches and it switches on all the lights, all the camera, everything for me.
[00:09:09] So I can actually get started for my daily update really quickly. And that has definitely made me more likely to do it because it is so much easier.
[00:09:17]Another technique I found was remember why you want to do this? Write it on the wall, add it to your calendar. There’s a reason why you wanted to make this show, so don’t forget it.
[00:09:26] What I’ve done is I’ve literally added it to my weekly schedule so that I read the points about why I wanted to make this on a weekly basis.
[00:09:34] If you miss an episode, don’t beat yourself up, but ask yourself why you missed that episode. This is another technique. Was it other pressures in life? Was it because you felt things were too much? Was it a lack of time? Lack of response in the audience, lack of support from your partner, lack of guests?
[00:09:50] Why was it? Just make a note of it, but don’t beat yourself up about it and just see if there’s a pattern that you can overcome.
[00:09:56] Another technique was about energy. And, I’ve actually got a… I don’t know whether you can hear that…. I’ve got a can of energy drink with me now. Hmm. Excuse me. but what the University of Kent found in a 2016 study was that anyone struggling to exercise, so again, this focus on new year’s resolution, should drink coffee or energy drinks to up their enthusiasm and up their motivation because they found it did improve motivation. So drink coffee, drink energy drinks, whatever you need, get that little kick to help get you started.
[00:10:29]So that’s some of the techniques I found out so far on pod fade.
[00:10:33] There’s one other observation I made during the, during the past two weeks that I wanted to elaborate a little bit on as well, and I don’t know whether you spotted this on social media when I put a picture on there of some empty chairs .
[00:10:43] And it’s how to cope with no audience at the beginning, because the reality is when you first launch apart from your friends, no one’s going to listen unless you get really lucky and someone just happened to bump into you. As I say, when my first project started, I had, I think it was 30 people at first, and then it was like 60 people over the first three shows, and then it expanded from there and reached over a million views across the series by the end of it. That was my experience, but at the beginning it’s silent, there’s nothing there, and it’s really, really demotivating when nothing seems to be happening.
[00:11:17] Well, one technique I have found is to make a show that works for an audience of one. You! Because if the show you’re making acts as a recap for yourself to motivate you and to give you techniques and remind you of techniques, it actually is more motivating.
[00:11:35] So this show, to be honest, if no one else listens to it, I’m actually finding it really useful to listen back to myself. Because it’s acting as a great recap on all the stuff I’m reading . I can get in the car, I can listen to it. I can be reminded of all those techniques. So to keep yourself motivated, make sure that it’s a show that you actually want to listen to as well for an audience of one, until everyone else starts pouring in.
[00:11:59]So the roundup, there are more techniques and all these medical journals and all these books, and there’s quite a few of them that I’m going to start sharing with you gradually now over the next couple of weeks, but I want to move on to some other topics.
[00:12:10] The biggest revelation for me, the most effective technique for me is the one hour role.
[00:12:15] There’s no question that has made such a difference to me and my motivation and keep me coming back but I do want to move on to something else next week.
[00:12:23] And that’s about some of the things you need to avoid when you start to think about the topic and about your approach to podcasting. Because I’ve made a lot of mistakes in both my former career as a, broadcaster. And in podcasting, and I want to share some of those with you to try and make sure you don’t make them as well.
[00:12:41] We will eventually get to the topic. We will start talking about what it is we’re going to make. But I think we have to get over these initial barriers first because without clearing these, the chances of success are going to be a lot, lot smaller. Remember, the vast majority of people give up, and I don’t want you or I to do that this time.
[00:13:02] The account name on social media is at @hitpodcast2020 @hitpodcast2020 you can find all the details on there. You can also find the website. “CanIMakeAHitPodcast.com”. It’s literally all one word. CanIMakeAHitPodcast.com I’m not an expert in this.
[00:13:18] I’m just trying to stuff out myself. I’m trying to share it with you. I’m learning, but I would like to learn with you as well, so please tell me what works for you, what doesn’t work for you as well, so I can gather all this information together.
[00:13:30] The bottom line is the internet says we can make a hit podcast as independent podcast makers in the 2020s without money and with a full time job.
[00:13:39] Well, if the internet says it, let’s find out if that’s true, because if it is, there has to be a way to do it and I want you and I to succeed. I will speak to you soon.