Ep 495: Trademarks. Do I Really Need One? | Autumn Witt Boyd Episode Recap

AJV (00:02):
So wanna know how to protect your personal brand. I just got off of an awesome conversation with a friend of mine, autumn Witt Boyd, who is the founder and owner of a WB law firm, which is kind of a unique law firm in the personal brand space that she really caters to people who have personal brands, courses, books, keynotes, podcasts but anyone who would consider themselves a content creator. So if you’re listening to this going, I don’t know if I’m a content creator, I’m an entrepreneur or a small business owner. If you have a methodology or a framework to your business, this applies to you. You are a content creator. If you have a robust website or our blogs or you put out a bunch of free content, guess what? You’re a content creator even if you don’t think you are.
AJV (00:50):
And so we had this amazing conversation on the influential personal brand podcast, and I thought it was worthy enough to recap it in a shorter conversation of just how do you protect your personal brand? And one of the first things that we should really consider is how do we do that in a proactive manner, right? So there’s things to do on the backend. Those are always more time consuming and more expensive. So what are some of the things that we can, as we’re getting started, or even before we get started to protect our personal brands? So, couple of quick things that I thought were just worthwhile to share with you guys. Number one, make sure that you’re starting from a clean slate, right? So if you’re in the very beginning phases of your business and you haven’t come up with even a name for your business or your personal brand, or a title for a book, a keynote, a course, a, a curriculum, a framework, a methodology, whatever it is, right?
AJV (01:43):
This is the best place to start, is make sure that you’re starting on, you know, solid ground. And there’s, there’s nothing else in the marketplace that’s already being actively used, right? And there’s some nuance to that, but I just thought this was a good, healthy checklist is as you’re, as you’re coming up with the name or the title for your things, right? So again, those are variety of things, right? Could be company name, brand name book title, course title, keynote title, podcast title. Just think titles, right? Names brands, right? Brands have names. So these, these are some things you wanna just do to make sure you’re just clean slate. Don’t need to worry about anything later. ’cause I know from experience, once you get attached to something, there is emotional involvement and it also feels like starting over, even though you’re not, if you have to come up with a new name for something. So let’s just make sure that the name you’re coming up with is one that’s gonna last the test of time because some, it’s not in use somewhere else. Okay? that’s the first thing is start with the US office of patents and trademarks, right? Make sure that no one else already has this in use or has an active trademark. Perhaps it’s expired or whatever, but just make sure
AJV (02:59):
That that’s a first round filter as you’re kind of going through what we call the title tests. This is what we call the availability test, right? So if you’re a part of the Brand Builders Group community we talk about this and finding your brand DNA, which we did trademark. So on that note this is one of the five title tests. And one of the things is going, is it available? Don’t take something that’s not available. So that’s the first round filter. Is it trademark, right? Is it already active and in use by someone else with a, with a legal trademark? Number two do a thorough Google search, right? These are DIY things. You don’t have to have an attorney to do these things, which means it costs your time, but it’s saving you dollars. So do a thorough Google search.
AJV (03:42):
What do I mean by thorough? Go at least to pages 5, 6, 7 on Google to see if anything pops up. And for all intents and purposes, screenshot all of the work so that you have proof. Make sure that when you’re screenshotting things, it shows the date on your calendar of like, Hey, on this date, right? Screenshots, also share dates. Don’t delete that, right? Label it with the date. But it’s better if it can share. Show your calendar for proof. But those are really important. Same thing with the US Office of Patent and trademarks. Whatever you can do to have proof that on this date, this is what I took, this is my proof, my documentation. Same thing with Google. Because to today, it might not be there, but a week from now it might, right? So it’s always good when you came up with something to make sure that you’re, you’re just taking the one extra step of documentation for proof and just wanna put those in your archive files.
AJV (04:39):
Save ’em for a rainy day, hopefully you’ll never need ’em. Third thing is check social media platforms for that title, right? So, you know, I use the brand title better than ever, so I’ll just use that, right? Not in use on anything with Google. It was not trademarked. It was there’s no podcasts, there’s no books, there’s, you know, there’s all the things, right? So that’d be the next thing. Do an Amazon search and just see if it’s in use. One of the things that we talk about on the podcast interview with Autumn Whit Void is just because it’s a book title does not mean you can’t use it. Doesn’t mean you should, but you cannot trademark a book title by itself. You have to have an entire series of things for it to actually get trademarked. So it cannot just be a book title. So if you have a book title and a keynote title and a course title all with the same title, now that’s a brand, but a book is not a brand. So you cannot trademark a book title. So just because it pops up doesn’t mean you can’t use it. It just doesn’t mean you should, right? Just because you can doesn’t mean you should always. So you just wanna go and, and do the, the due diligence, right? If it was an Amazon book that was released 10 years ago
AJV (05:57):
And five people bought it and there’s no reviews, but the, you know, just use your common sense knowledge there of like what you should and shouldn’t do. But, you know, those are things that you wanna check, right? So check for book titles just to go, like if you find it there, then pull up the website, right? Is it in use? Is there anything else in there? Even if they don’t have a trademark, is it in use elsewhere? Because you don’t wanna be competing about what someone else already has claim over. There’s enough ideas and enough other titles that we can come up with. So those are just things to pay attention to. Next one is do a podcast search, right? So go through the iTunes library or wherever you listen to your podcast and do some title searches. And go, Hey, is this title being used here?
AJV (06:42):
Right? So you wanna be doing you know, clearly the US patent and trademark search. You wanna do Amazon search a good thorough five to six page deep Google search do a podcast search and then you know, the social media, right? And then do it for anything that would be on handles on the primary platforms that you would be using, right? So if you’re gonna have a YouTube channel, make sure it’s not in use on anything else’s, right? Make sure this isn’t someone’s handle on Instagram or make sure this isn’t a title actively in use on LinkedIn. So those are some of the key places that will just help you make sure that when you come up with something before you get emotionally invested in it do these availability tests and make sure that it’s available. ’cause Starting with a clean slate is one of the most important things you can do to have a good secure brand.
AJV (07:35):
And then it also gives you proof when you do all this documentation that you were first in use, right? So there is this idea of there is a race to use. In other words, there is a race to who’s gonna use it first, be the first. And if you’re gonna do it, then last but not least, take the necessary steps to get what you can trademarked or copyright, right? That doesn’t mean everything needs to be, but if you’re gonna have an entire brand bill around something, take the few hundred dollars or a couple thousand dollars even and protect that. If that’s gonna be something that is gonna make you money, it’s gonna stay in the test of time. In other words, you’re gonna be using it for a while and you have an emotional investment in it, then it is worth the time and the money ’cause it’s gonna take time to do it and some money.
AJV (08:24):
But if this is your business title, your brand title, it is worth it. So once you find that it is clear, it’s available, it’s in use, take that next step. Do the due diligence, get an attorney and file your trademark and protect your brand, right? The more you do it on the front end, the less expensive it’s gonna be later on. So how do you protect your brand, make sure it’s really yours, and then take the next step to legally protect it, to make sure that you get to keep that brand and nobody else can take it from you.

Ep 494: How To Protect Your Personal Brand with Autumn Witt Boyd

AJV (00:02):
Hey everybody, and welcome to the Influential Personal Brand Podcast. So excited to get to interview a newer friend of mine, autumn Whit Boyd. And although we are just getting to know each other over the last several months we actually have a long history in common that we discovered at a Christmas party where her husband and I grew up in the same hometown, which Dalton, Georgia is a pretty small hometown, very small, so , and then you live in the same city as my brothers. And so there’s, there’s so many cool connections and I love to get to interview people that I also have personal connections with. But before I formally introduce you guys to Autumn, I wanna tell you what this episode is gonna be about and why you should probably stick around. Today. We’re gonna be talking about how to protect your brand, and we mean in a legal sense.
AJV (00:52):
So we’re gonna be talking about different things you need to know in terms of maybe trademarks, copyrights, just intellectual property in general, but then also it’s in the litigious environment that we tend to live in here in the United States of America. What do, what do you need to know that you don’t know? And so, again, this is kind of one of those episodes that doesn’t matter where you’re at in your journey, this is going to be helpful for you. It does not matter if you are a beginner or you are super established. I promise you, there is something that you’re like, oh, I’m so glad I listened today. I had no idea. So this is one of those episodes you wanna stick around for. So let’s me formally introduce you to Ms. Autumn with Boyd. So Autumn is the founder and owner of a WB law firm, which in my opinion is really a law firm really built for personal brands.
AJV (01:47):
Now I’ll let you define that in a second, but I think that’s really important because I think that you have a really cr you have created a really unique niche in the market that you cater to the individual, the solopreneur, the entrepreneur, the small business owner who also has some sort of, you know, personal brand as a part of their business. And anything from contract templates to custom built contracts, to just even strategy on your ip, which is one of the things we’re gonna talk about today. This is a really unique business model that you have created to cater to people like me and everyone listening today. So to help them get to know you a little bit, I would love to hear from you, how did you create this niche in the marketplace? Because it is different than most other attorneys and other firms that we have met, that we have talked to over the years, because you have a deep knowledge in the personal brand space. So how did that happen?
AWB (02:50):
Absolutely. By accident. It was not a grand plan. I quit my last job, hopefully we’ll never have another one. And started this firm in 2015. And I tried a couple different things. I tried working with startups. I tried working with creative, more creative entrepreneurs service providers. And what I found is I tried lots of different things, was that my favorite people to work with were these personal brands, mostly folks selling either education products, doing speaking a lot of coaches. So all of them had a deep mission at the kind of core of their business. So they wanted to build something bigger than themselves. They wanted to have an impact. And they were just energetic and creative and fun to work with. My background was as a copyright litigator, so I used to go to court and mostly worked with photographers and stock photo agencies.
AWB (03:42):
So I have a deep knowledge of copyright. And what I found was for these personal brands, you know, I ended up building a team that we can really do everything they need. The good news is the business model is fairly simple, even as it scales now, as it scales, the complexity of some of the legal needs becomes more significant. But you know, in the beginning there’s not a lot of revenue streams, there’s not a lot of moving parts and pieces. So it’s easy for us to come in and really make a big impact with not a huge amount of, you know, legal spend or a lot of you know, complex legal protections.
AJV (04:19):
Yeah. So that’s a great opening to this conversation, and I love that you went to, like, you were in litigation for different copyright. Like yeah, that’s one of the biggest things that I think our audience, it’s just unaware about. And I think it’s, ’cause it’s one of those things where there’s just a lot of nuance to what can you copyright, what do you trademark, but what should you copyright? Yes. Or what should you trademark? So can you just like, define it, like what’s the difference between a copyright and a trademark?
AWB (04:51):
Yes. So we’ll dig in. So when we think about copyrights, think about content. So if you have a curriculum or a framework, things that you teach, a signature talk that you give all of that is going to be protected by copyright. Also, things that you think of more as like true art. So photos, sculptures, paintings, movies, music, all of that is covered by copyright. When we think about a, a trademark, think about a brand. So it could be your name if you are the personal brand, we certainly have helped some of our clients register their names as trademarks. Often it is the name of a signature concept, or it could be the name of a business. If you have a signature course or offering, it could be that name, it could be a podcast name. Anything you think of that is attached to your company. So the purpose of a trademark is to help customers find you basically, and to know that when they find you, you are the thing they were looking for. So in a more traditional corporate sense, think of like Coca-Cola or McDonald’s. Like those are big, big brand names. So you know, when you get a Coke off the shelf, you know what you’re getting because it has that Coke branding on it.
AJV (05:56):
Oh, that’s a really great distinguishing factor. And I love how simple that is. It’s just like copyright is content, right? Yeah. And I think, and I love too, it’s like it’s, it’s, it’s art is considered into like photos and anything like that, but it’s the, the creation, right? So it’s what have you created, whereas trademarks or anything associated with the brand, so your name, company name, curriculum names, so titles, yeah. And ultimately helping define that you are who you say you are and helping other people find you.
AWB (06:29):
Yeah. There’s a little bit of overlap when it comes to logos. So think of like, Mickey Mouse is my favorite example here. You know, that is a creative work, but it also signifies the Walt Disney brand. But for most of the people in our space, you’re not really gonna have a lot of overlap. Logos are , usually. Pretty simple.
AJV (06:46):
So it’s interesting. So then with all of the people that you have worked with, like what do you think people should be like in our space? Right? So most of the people listening to this are in some sort of content creation Yeah. World, whether it’s you’re writing books or creating speeches, or you have coaching programs, consulting programs, or you’re just trying to come up with methodologies and frameworks for your existing business, right? So what should we be thinking about when it comes to, well, what should I go and get, you know, a trademark for what should I try to get a copyright for?
AWB (07:20):
Yeah. And I forgot to give my standard disclaimer, aj, which is, I’m a lawyer, but this is not legal advice, so I’ll plug that in. And I’m a bit of a contrarian when it comes to trademarks. So I really think for personal brands, the folks who are listening probably don’t need a lot of registered trademarks in their business. So what we usually recommend, we’ll kind of take an inventory when we start working with a new client, you know, what are the different brands you’re using in your business? And we’ll look at them and we try to prioritize what is making you money what is attached to something so that it’s really a business asset. Because a lot of our clients may have 10 or 15 different brands in their business. They may have slogans or things they say a lot. They may have, you know, various different offerings.
AWB (08:04):
But usually there’s one or two that bubble to the top of like, oh, if someone copied this, you know, it would really confuse my audience. Or like, I would definitely lose sales. So we kind of prioritize it that way. Is it making you money? Number two, are you going to stick with it for a while? Because in the United States, the trademark registration process is expensive and it takes forever . So right now, best case scenario is about a year from the day we file an application to the day it’s approved by the US PTO. That is not us being slow. That is, they are overwhelmed and understaffed and it’s just very slow. So I’m, we’re big on ROI here at our firm. I am never asking people to spend money on a legal protection that’s not really gonna do something to benefit their business.
AWB (08:53):
So I wanna make sure that you’re gonna stick with it long enough that waiting that time, spending a couple thousand dollars, usually if you’re working with a lawyer on a trademark registration, it’s not cheap. And you wanna do it the right way, very easy to mess up on your own. So I wanna make sure you’re gonna stick with it long enough to see some benefit from having that r in a circle. And then the last thing I always ask is, you know, would you be upset if it were copied? So sometimes there are things that aren’t necessarily a money maker, but they’re just very personal or you feel really attached to them. And so maybe it is, you know, if you do have the you know, extra funds in your business, it may make sense to register that just because you would be, you would feel very violated if someone else copied it.
AWB (09:36):
Mm. And what a trademark registration does for you, it gives you an easier way to enforce your rights. So if you’re not willing to send a cease and desist letter, if you’re not, if you don’t want to kind of become a little bit combative, now you don’t have to file a lawsuit, but to maintain a trademark registration, you have to enforce it. That’s one of the requirements. Or it will just basically become worthless. So you have to be monitoring the mar marketplace, seeing if anybody else out there is starting something similar. You gotta keep your eyes out. And then, and we do that for a lot of our clients and then you know, take appropriate action. So send a cease and assist letter or try and figure out, you know, can we coexist in this marketplace? Can you stay in your lane and I’ll stay in my lane? So the getting the registration is really just step one of a much longer process of protecting that brand. Yeah.
AJV (10:25):
So that’s a really good conversation. So registration is step one. ’cause You may not even get it right. Right. You may apply for it and be denied, but assuming you do get it, that’s really step one because then you have to have things in place to monitor the marketplace to see if any else is using it. And then you actually have to be willing, right. Both in emotion and in dollars Yes. To actually enforce it. So, and I love those questions. You said it’s like, Hey, is it making you money? Are you gonna stick with it? And would you be upset if somebody else was using it? And if the answer is yes to all of this, it’s gonna be a couple thousand dollars and a year and that stuff, or
AWB (11:02):
More, it could be two or three years depending on kind of some of the speed bumps that you may come across.
AJV (11:07):
Yeah. But they approve based on date of application date of when it was in use. How does that work?
AWB (11:14):
So there’s two ways you can file an application in the United States. One is you’re actually using the trademark. So that’s called an in use application. Those go the fastest. But you can also file an application if you’ve got an idea or something you’re planning to launch in the near future. And that’s called intent to use. So you go through the process and then you kind of hit a speed bump and you still do have to show you’re using it. So you can’t get to the finish line, but it will put you ahead of the line of somebody who comes after you to try and apply. But in the US it, the, the rights are all based on use. So we have what’s called a race system. So it’s a race to be the first to actually use your trademark in connection with selling something. So it’s not enough to just have a landing page up or a coming soon. You have to actually be using it in commerce.
AJV (12:01):
Yeah. So this is so
AWB (12:02):
Interesting. So it can get tricky.
AJV (12:04):
This is so interesting. So I have a question. So what about ’cause you mentioned slogans, but like, what about quotes? Mm-Hmm. . Like, is that a thing that people trademark?
AWB (12:15):
It can be. If it’s something now it has to be used in commerce and you have to prove that to the US patent and trademark office. And they have specific ways they wanna see you using it. So it has to be used kind of near where you’re selling something. So you’d have to use it on a sales page or you know, in a brochure that has a way that you can call and buy something. There’s different ways, but they’re always looking for you to use it in like an advertising or marketing way. It can’t just be, I say this thing on my podcast a lot.
AJV (12:43):
What if it was something that makes sense? What if it was something in your book?
AWB (12:47):
Yeah. So you’d have to show that you’re using that quote, not just in the book. It would have to be featured in, you know, again, like a pull quote on a sales page or something. Yeah.
AJV (12:58):
AWB (12:58):
It’s very strict. They’re very stringent. This is why a lot of applications get denied. And that’s why I always say, you wanna work with a trademark lawyer who knows what they’re doing
AJV (13:06):
To have it in the right and necessary places, but really they wanna see it. How is it being used for commerce?
AWB (13:12):
Yeah, exactly. That’s what trademarks are all about. Copyright, you know, it could absolutely be in the book and be protected, but it has to be you know, a a quote would be too short to be protected by copyright. It has to be considered a, a work.
AJV (13:26):
Fascinating. Does that
AWB (13:27):
Make sense? Yeah.
AJV (13:28):
So what, what do you see are the biggest mistakes that people are making when it comes to copyright and trademark?
AWB (13:35):
So, on the trademark side, since we’ve been talking about that, the biggest one is choosing a brand and then not checking to see if anyone else is already using it. Because again, we’re a race system. So if somebody else, you know, you come up with this really great slogan or brand idea, someone else is already using it. It doesn’t matter if they stay very tiny and you, you know, achieve this great success and huge exposure, they would still have what’s called priority. So they, they win the race, they could come after you, you know, years later after you’ve really built that brand invested time and money into promoting it. Okay. So, so we always wanna start with a nice, fresh, clean brand that is really just yours that you can own.
AJV (14:19):
Agreed. So what should people be doing to go, oh shoot, is my stuff already being used out there? Like, where’s like the safest place to check? How would we do that?
AWB (14:29):
Yeah, so I usually recommend a couple. You can do these on your own. Now we have a paid tool that we use at the law firm. So if you wanna register your trademark, we’ll do a deeper search. But you can absolutely do it on your own. I always start with a Google, but go to like page five or six, like do a deep Google check any social media platforms that you may be using. So if you plan to be on LinkedIn, go check LinkedIn and see if that brand pops up when you search. Same if you intend to start a podcast, go check the podcast players, type in the brand, see what pops up. And then also the US Patent and Trademark office. But there are so many unregistered marks that could still cause you problems because in the US you can have what’s called common law rights, even if you never register your trademark.
AJV (15:12):
What’s that?
AWB (15:14):
So it just, it, you can file a lawsuit, you can take action to protect your brand, even if it’s not registered. It’s a state law, right? So it’s not quite as strong as, you know, the federal rights that you get when you register your trademark. There’s definitely advantages to registering. But there are people out there with common law rights that can cause you problems. So again, that’s why we wanna make sure we search and we see it’s not just the registered ones that could cause us problems.
AJV (15:41):
Yeah. So back to this litigious environment where anyone can file a lawsuit for anything for any reason.
AWB (15:48):
AJV (15:49):
Yeah. That’s, thanks Americans that is that is definitely something to be on the lookout for pros
AWB (15:56):
And cons for sure.
AJV (15:57):
Yeah. And I, and I love that it’s like, do a Google search, you know, go through podcasts, right? Search, you know, apple, iTunes clearly the US Patent and Trademark office social media platforms what about Amazon? Like, should we be searching like Amazon for book titles, or does that really matter?
AWB (16:16):
So a single book title is never a trademark. Okay. But if you’re doing a series of books that can, because book titles are generally, you know, not really a brand when you think about if you’re looking for something Sure. Yeah. But if you have a book and a course that goes with it, or if you have a book and you know, a workbook or a series of things okay. That can’t, now there there is confusion among book titles, but I mean, I’m sure you’ve noticed if you search up a book title, there may be five different books with the same title. That’s pretty frequent.
AJV (16:45):
Yes. Or I usually don’t just like one word different. Yes. Yeah.
AWB (16:48):
I usually don’t worry too much about that if the plan is just to make it a book. Okay. Now, if you’re planning on making it a, a big brand, you may wanna consider choosing a different title ’cause you don’t want that confusion.
AJV (16:58):
So I wanna be clear really quickly. So using my husband as an example, who has his first book Take The Stairs, which was a, a New York Times bestselling book. So you’re telling me right now if some other person today decided they wanted to write a book called Take the Stairs? They could. And it’s not a big, like,
AWB (17:18):
It’s not a violation of any rights. Yes, I know.
AJV (17:22):
But we have
AWB (17:23):
Authors don’t like that
AJV (17:24):
, but it’s good to know. Yeah. But we would also have this like, you know, common law, right? Where we could go, Hey, and potentially win something or No,
AWB (17:34):
Not for a book title. Book titles are, are generally never a trait. But if he has other things connected to it that could be become a brand. Like does he have a signature talk or like handouts or, yeah, so usually there’s like a, a universe that grows a, around something when it’s
AJV (17:53):
AWB (17:53):
A slash like that.
AJV (17:54):
I think this is a really unique and important topic for our, the brain
AWB (17:58):
Vendor for sure.
AJV (17:59):
Right. for this. Because it’s like, if you’re gonna write a book and have a book title, then you also need to have a keynote for sure that if have least
AWB (18:06):
Like a freebie. And a lot of people do this in publishing now. You know, you buy the, you buy the book early, you get some sort of online resource. Yeah.
AJV (18:14):
AWB (18:15):
You’re very familiar with that, aj.
AJV (18:16):
I know that and that’s why I’m asking. ’cause I just like, out of all the things, like this is something, it’s like, hey, it’s like if you’re gonna write a book, then you need to make sure you have, you know, the coordinated keynote speech to it. You wanna have some sort of like, Hey, free download it, you can get ahead. Yeah. And they, and they all need to have the same title. Correct. And then in that regard, if you had your, now it’s
AWB (18:34):
AJV (18:34):
Brand. Now it’s a brand. So now we can go and try to trademark trademark it. Yes.
AWB (18:38):
Exactly. Yep.
AJV (18:40):
Y’all deal. And this is always
AWB (18:41):
Something, a big deal, and this is always something I negotiate when my clients get book deals, is making sure that they own the trademark to the title. Because that is not something that most publishing companies think about.
AJV (18:51):
Yeah. But that is a huge deal.
AWB (18:53):
It’s a valuable asset for sure.
AJV (18:55):
Yeah. If you’re gonna publish this book, then we need you to at least publish this free workbook that’s three pages that goes with it and have your keynote title the same thing. Now we have a brand, now we can go trademark it. And that’s a really
AWB (19:09):
Important thing. And now you can exclude other people. Yeah. Yeah.
AJV (19:12):
That’s so nuanced, but so vitally valuable for every single person who has listened to this, who goes, one day I wanna write a book. ’cause We do this thing. So we have what we call the five title tests. And a part of those tests is, one of them is the availability test . I like it. Is it already in use? Right? Yeah. But what you’re, because is like, we already like, we actually tell people, which now I need to be really on top of like how we’re explaining this. ’cause We, we actually say, Hey, if it’s already a pretty well like, bestselling book on Amazon, like
AWB (19:47):
I Yeah, no, I agree. I would avoid it. Yeah.
AJV (19:49):
Find, find a new title. But ultimately if it’s just that somebody else could go, no, I’m gonna go for it, I’m taking it. It’s true.
AWB (19:57):
Yeah. If you’re really connected to it. Yeah.
AJV (20:01):
But that’s a big deal. Yeah. You know, our whole thing is like, Hey, if they’re already taken, let’s find something that can be unique. No,
AWB (20:08):
I agree.
AJV (20:09):
I agree. For sure. But somebody could on their own go, wow, they don’t even have a website, they don’t have a podcast, they don’t have a thing, they don’t have anything else. I’m going for it and I’m gonna take it. Mm-Hmm. . Mm-Hmm. . That’s no joke. I mean, that’s kind of a big deal. Yeah. everyone back to why everyone needs to listen to this episode, it’s kind of a big deal. Now I know that we’ve been like specifically talking about like copyrights and trademarks, and that’s a teeny tiny part of what we really need to know to protect our brands. And so on. This whole idea of making sure things aren’t being copied, what should we know? What do we need to know in order to protect our website content, product services? Like what else do we need to know?
AWB (20:55):
Yeah. So when we think about most of those things, they’re gonna be protected by copyright, not trademark. And we, we’ve all probably heard you have automatic copyright protection as soon as you create a work. If you haven’t, good news, you have automatic copyright protection. As soon as it’s out of your brain, it has to be in a computer document or written or something. But in the United States, you cannot file a lawsuit until it’s registered. So it’s kind of the, the opposite of with trademark, you don’t have those common law rights. So if you have something, again, that’s a really key asset in the business, a signature course, a signature talk, something that would really have an impact. If someone copied it, we highly recommend registering that with the US Copyright Office. And it doesn’t mean you’re ever gonna file a lawsuit, but if you did have to send that cease and desist letter, you know, if I get a cease and desist letter and I check and it’s not registered, I’m like, I’m not really worried about it because I know they can’t really do anything. They, you know, it’s kind of an empty threat. Yeah.
AJV (21:51):
So that’s interesting.
AWB (21:52):
The good news is the copyright process is much simpler than the trademark process. So, and it’s really it’s almost the opposite. So with trademarks, they’re giving you a monopoly on that brand. So they’re very, they make it very difficult. It’s very hard to get through that process on copyrights. They want to encourage creativity. So the process is much simpler. I would still recommend working with an attorney, but if you want to try and DIY it, it’s pretty forgiving if you make mistakes.
AJV (22:18):
So what are some examples of things that people should get a copyright for?
AWB (22:23):
So an online course or curriculum? I have seen people do keynotes. Podcasts are hard to do because it’s episode by episode and that’s just a slog. It’s a lot of work and time and money books for sure. And if you’re working with a publisher, they may take care of that for you. They may not. That’s something to check your contract on whose job that is. But definitely, definitely a book. I’ve registered the copyrights to entire websites, especially if they have a, you know, a rich, you know, history of blog posts or really good content. Wow. so again, the analysis is, is it valuable to your business? Would it impact you if it was copied?
AJV (23:04):
That’s fascinating. So again, everyone who’s listening courses, books, yeah.
AWB (23:10):
We register a lot of courses. Yes.
AJV (23:12):
Yeah. And, and that’s a lot. The thing that,
AWB (23:14):
Yeah. The thing I will say, though kind of on the the flip side of this, people often ask, you know, how can I stop someone from copying my course? You can’t, you can’t actually stop someone. You can set yourself in a good position so that if and when it happens, you know, you can take action. But I usually tell people, don’t worry too much about it being copied. You know, go ahead and put some protections in place and then kind of put your blinders on. Mm-Hmm. . And, you know, if you are a personal brand, that is one of the wonderful things about working in this industry, is that people are usually coming to you because of your secret sauce.
AJV (23:48):
That’s right.
AWB (23:48):
It’s not just that they wanna learn about Facebook ads or they wanna learn how to garden or whatever the thing is that, you know, you’re teaching about. So it’s very hard for a competitor to just copy your content and have any kind of impact. Yeah.
AJV (24:00):
And I love that you said that. ’cause That is so true. It’s like they could go learn this anywhere else. They’re coming to you because they wanna learn it from you. Right. Right. And I love that you said that there’s a time and a place to go, Hey, let’s, let’s be wise and protect the things that are valuable assets that make you money, that have meaning to you, that, you know, whatever. But at the same token, remember at the end of the day, they’re coming to you because it’s you. And No, I love that. I think that’s a really good checkpoint of not creating panic , everyone who’s like, oh my gosh,
AWB (24:35):
Can be, it can be a huge energy drain. I’m sure you’ve seen this. Oh yeah. And it can be very dis very distracting and very upsetting when you find that you’ve been copied so it doesn’t feel
AJV (24:45):
Good. So, so on that note, so what do you do if you discover that you have, right? Like if somebody has copied your work, like what do you do? What should you, yes.
AWB (24:56):
Yeah. So step one is always create a record . So think about if you had to go in front of Judge Judy, what would you show her to prove that you had been copied? So that may be screenshots, that may be, you know, creating a fake account and, you know, downloading stuff like, you know, whatever you have to do to gather that evidence so that you can prove if you, you know, God forbid if you have to or just so you can attach it to, you know, if you have to send them a letter, you know, because things change, websites change. And it’s not because anybody’s doing anything shady. We just change things a lot. So gather that evidence before you reach out to the person before they know that they’re on your radar so that they can’t just take it down.
AWB (25:39):
And then step two, once you’ve got all that collected and organized depending on kind of how important it is and who it is, this may differ a little bit, but I like the idea of reaching out to the person before you involve lawyers and before you get really mean and strict about it. Mm-Hmm. especially if the person copying you is like a lot further behind you in business or is just starting Mm-Hmm. it is, it is kind of hard to believe that people don’t know better, but some people really don’t know better. And so, you know, I am a fan of giving them the benefit of the doubt reaching out gently and saying, you know, Hey, I noticed this. I’m sure you didn’t intend it. You know, would you mind taking it down or, you know, please attribute it to me.
AWB (26:21):
Like whatever in your eyes would make that feel okay. And I would say 99% of the time they’re super embarrassed. Mm-Hmm. And they will comply right away. They’ll either take it down, they’ll apologize. And then that 1% of times, you know, they may get their backup and say like, no, I created this. Or they’ll deny it. And sometimes it’s obvious, sometimes it’s a little more of a gray area, like they’ve copied your ideas, but they haven’t copied your exact words. And that’s where it becomes a little harder. But then sometimes we do have verbatim copying where they say, no, I’m not gonna take it down. And that’s when you probably wanna get a lawyer involved if it is something that is, again, valuable to you because lawyers are expensive. Yeah. so not everything is worth, you know, spending thousands of dollars on hiring a lawyer to help you with. But if it is something essential to your business, then that would be the next step to kind of ratchet things up. Yeah. Is get a lawyer involved who can help you. You know, sometimes people can say things accidentally that they don’t know could hurt them later. Uhhuh, as they’re trying to be nice and friendly. ,
AJV (27:22):
Anything you say can, will be
AWB (27:24):
Used, can and will be used against you. Yes.
AJV (27:26):
But I think that, I love that where it’s like, you don’t have to go right to level 10 immediately send a cease and desist. It’s like, Hey, make the person aware. Ask them to take it down. Make sure you take the proof. Then it’s like there’s a system of escalation. Yeah. Yeah. To
AWB (27:43):
. It’s very rarely like jumping to a lawsuit.
AJV (27:45):
Which is good because nobody really wins in a lawsuit. The only, you know, I had, we were in a lawsuit once trying to get our IP back and you know, the lawyers were really upfront and they just said, I just wanna be upfront with you day one. You do not win here. The only people who win here are your attorneys, the lawyers.
AWB (28:05):
AJV (28:05):
We just want you to know you. Even if we win, you’re not winning. We are winning. Right? Yes. And they were so correct and I was so appreciative of like, oh yeah, like, you won big time. You know? Yeah. Because it’s, it’s, it’s an emotional drain. It’s a financial drain. It’s a time drain, and it’s like, you better really be sure. Right. And, and also that should on the other side, people don’t wanna be involved in that on the other side too. Right. So I love your approach of most people are gonna be embarrassed and they’re, they’re gonna want to avoid that as well. So start with doing that before you involve attorneys. Now I do have a a, a personal question, and I’ll leave any names out of it, but in my husband’s first book, there’s a very famous quote Right. That he uses in, in his speeches in, in our courses and the book, it was just kinda like one of those signature pullout quotes. We call it the rent axiom, which is, you know, the rent is always due. And people really like that and took that. And
AWB (29:10):
This is his original Right. He didn’t borrow it from anyone else. Yeah,
AJV (29:14):
Yeah, yeah. And they took it and used it and quoted it and put it on t-shirts and put it on posters, shared it on national television and never cited it. Yeah. Now, I believe that some of these very well-known famous people probably didn’t know where it originally came from. They just heard it Right. From a, from a whomever. From a whomever, from a whomever. So what do you do in those cases where you’re like, Hey, like you are saying this and not giving yourself credit, but taking credit for it. What do you do in those cases?
AWB (29:46):
Yeah, I think again, you have to decide, like, is that impacting your business enough to spend the time and energy chasing it? And maybe it is, maybe this is something that’s really personal and means a lot to him, and that he wants to be attributed. I mean, I think if you see like memes and quotes, they are misattributed all the time. Totally. And so you’re definitely playing whack-a-mole at a certain point, trying to go after all the places that have, you know, cited that incorrectly. But there may be a couple, you know, if it’s Oprah, that you try and get in touch with their people and like, that’s a big platform I would like for this to be corrected. Yeah. And you know, especially if it’s a news organization or something like that where they do value correctness, accuracy, and Yes. Accuracy they may issue a correction. Now corrections are never helpful. Really. Yeah. , they, they’re never as prominent as the original thing.
AJV (30:38):
Yeah. That’s interesting. So you’re kind of just SOL kind of
AWB (30:42):
A little bit. Yeah. Again, we all have limited time and resources, so even though I’m a lawyer, like you could spend all of your time and energy chasing after this stuff, and most of the time it’s not really having an impact on your business. So I’d rather see you focus on growing the business, being proactive.
AJV (30:58):
Yeah. And I, and I love that because what it is having an impact on is your banking account with all that money coming out. Yes. Yes. So back to be selective, be protective, but be selective. Yeah. Right. I love that.
AWB (31:10):
Yeah. You don’t, not every battle is one you have to fight.
AJV (31:12):
Amen. I love that. So, okay. What else do we need to know to protect our brand?
AWB (31:18):
Okay. This is the one that nobody talks about. ’cause Trademarks and copyrights are sexier. But contracts are
AJV (31:24):
Really Yes.
AWB (31:25):
The biggest, most important. Yes. Like legal foundation. This is really, even though we’re IP lawyers here at the A WB firm, we spend almost all day, every day working on contracts that may touch IPN may not. Mm. So tell me how you see contracts coming up with your clients. Like where are, because I can, I can think of a couple, but I’m curious what you’ve see.
AJV (31:47):
You know what’s so interesting? I feel like most people wonder if they need them . Oh. And my response is yes. Always. Yes. If you’re collecting money for services, yes. You, you probably want one. And, but I think a lot of people really struggle with how much the laws are changing and how to stay on top of it. Like, you know, non-disparagement clauses are now illegal right now. There was that you know, just buildup past eliminating non-competes,
AWB (32:20):
I was about to say. Yeah. It’s, it’s
AJV (32:21):
In flux. It’s except for, except for right. Executives for X amount of periods. So there’s these nuances to it. And if you don’t live in the legal industry, which I do not, but I’m in the EO group with you, right? Yes. Entrepreneurs organization. And that’s just a really added bonus that people are always talking about these things. And I catch ’em really in the peripheral. Yeah. But for those of you who don’t, so like, this is a great example with this new non-compete walk. Does that mean that all of us as business owners need to go update all of our contracts today? Do we need to go and, you know, have previous signed assigned employment agreements refreshed? Like what do these laws mean? One thing that they passed, but then what are we expected to do? And if we don’t know because we’re not attorneys and we do have ’em in there, and then someone’s like, that’s illegal. Like, you know, so I think those are the nuances where I hear, I’m like, well, I didn’t know that. It feels
AWB (33:19):
Very overwhelming, best to
AJV (33:21):
Know that. And so I think it’s one, do I need a contract? But then two, it’s like, what do I need in the contract? And I’ll tell you the number one thing that people I hear from, at least our audience, is I don’t wanna 13 page contract and I want, I don’t want it to sound like some attorney wrote it. ’cause No one can understand that junk. Like, how do I get a normal everyday language agreement that I can understand and my clients can understand? Yeah. So, and that’s kind of hard to do.
AWB (33:48):
It is. So going back to the first question, a contract is better than no contract, even if it’s not perfect. So I will take an imperfect contract all day long. All a contract is doing is setting expectations between two people or two companies about what’s gonna happen, value that’s being exchanged, you know, if there’s money being exchanged services if you’re selling a course or curriculum or licensing your content to somebody else to use. So there’s still gonna be a lot of good stuff in there, even if you mess up some of the specifics. So, and most things will not go to court. So that’s the good news. Most of the time you’re negotiating with the other person if something goes wrong. So using a contract is better than not, even if it’s not perfect. Mm-Hmm. As far as keeping up with all of the changing things, I understand that is overwhelming. I have a resource to recommend, which is the a WB firm firm newsletter. So we send out a newsletter every week or so with these kinds of updates. So if you are in this industry you know, I can’t promise we’re gonna cover every single thing. But it’s a nice way to just get little, you know, snippets about things that could impact your business. And you’re not getting a bunch of junk that applies to like a giant corporation. It’s really focused.
AJV (35:03):
I give online business, I’m gonna give you a plug for this because I subscribed to this and the one that came out I think last week was are you mandatorily required to hand over sales recordings to your clients if they ask? Right. And I literally sent that to our VP of sales. I’m like, I need you to listen to this. Right. And it’s like, but it’s like, those are like things that wasn’t even on my radar, right? Yeah. And it’s like just subscribing to this newsletter. And just so you guys know, I’ll put this in the show notes. I’ll have all of the links for everything that you need and want and sh should do, even if you don’t think you do. But this one, if you go to awb firm.com/newsletter, a wb firm.com/newsletter, you can sign up for it. It’s free. But like, this is a great example of like, this is like things that I’m busy doing other stuff with. I’m like,
AWB (35:58):
Right, you’re not a lawyer, it’s not your job.
AJV (36:00):
Do we have to send these sales recordings and what are they gonna do with it? You know, so yeah. Little things like that I think are really, really valuable. Just a plug. Yeah.
AWB (36:09):
And the other thing I would mention is the way we approach legal protections and keeping up with all this stuff is proportional to the size of your business and to the risk of your business. So if you are just starting out, if you are getting your brand, your personal brand up and going, a lot of this stuff really doesn’t matter because you don’t have a lot of money in the business. You don’t have a lot to lose if you mess something up and you’re unlikely to be a target, frankly, for someone to sue you report you, you
AJV (36:36):
Know, bonus being a beginner. That’s
AWB (36:38):
Right. You’re, you’re, you know, little business, little problems . Yeah. When you have a bigger business, you got bigger problems. And that’s when you need to start paying attention to some of this more. Which the good news is you have more resources to Mm-Hmm. either hire an attorney, you know, have someone on your team monitoring this kind of stuff so that you can make sure that you’re compliant. Compliance matters more the bigger you get.
AJV (36:58):
Yeah. And I think that’s, so that’s so why so on some of these specifics, like just because these are things that I know have come up in our community a lot, like non-disparagement can’t do it. So at the same time though,
AWB (37:12):
In some scenarios,
AJV (37:13):
, right? So this is, so tell me, tell me if you think this is right nor wrong. So one of the things that we did with our agreements is we said yes of you. Okay, whatever non disparagement aren’t, you know, legal fine, but you can’t lie, right? So we just, we changed our clause not to, Hey, you can’t say anything negative about us. It’s, you cannot make false claims about us. Right?
AWB (37:42):
AJV (37:42):
So is that in line? Is that okay?
AWB (37:45):
Yes. And that was our, sorry, that was already illegal. Like that’s liable or slander saying things that are false. So what defamation clause is really out, if you have a defamation clause in a contract, what it prohibits is saying things that are true . Mm-Hmm. , but damaging or negative. So yes, but
AJV (38:05):
That’s, but that’s you know, one of the things that’s come up in my eo, it’s a
AWB (38:08):
Fine line. Uhhuh.
AJV (38:09):
. One of the things that’s come up in my EO group a lot is, well, their truth and the real truth are often different. How they feel Yes. Versus what happened are different. So what is that gray area?
AWB (38:22):
Yeah. So if you were gonna sue someone for liable or slander for defamation, it can’t be a feeling. It has to be a fact. So it has to, it has to be a false, you know, statement that you could test or verify. And it has to have a negative impact on your business, succeed.
AJV (38:38):
So succeed, lemme give you an example, succeed. Yeah. this was something that came up in like one of the like forum chat groups I’m in and they took a screenshot and somebody had put on like Yelp or Google reviews or something, worst business ever. Worst money I’ve ever spent. And it’s like really was is it really the worst business ever of all time? Is that truly accurate? Is it really the worst money that Right. Spent really? It’s like, have you eaten at, you know, the gas station? I don’t know, like Right. You know, it’s like really? Right. So what do you do with stuff like that?
AWB (39:14):
I mean, that stuff is just part of being in business. You gotta let it roll off your back. You can try and respond, you know, I mean, I, I don’t know about you. I’ve had some clients get canceled and it’s often over like really silly things and it’s very painful, it’s very hurtful. Awful. But often the best advice is just to ignore it. Like, just to move on. Yeah. Go do something positive to kind of shut out the negative noise. But I understand a lot of them are like, well, I wanna sue them. And I’m like, that is a
AJV (39:43):
Waste of your time.
AWB (39:45):
Kind of the worst thing you could possibly do. ’cause Now your answer just attention.
AJV (39:48):
It’s just attention. It’s just attention. Yes.
AWB (39:50):
And I’ll often say, this is not a legal problem, this is a PR problem.
AJV (39:54):
Yeah. That’s good.
AWB (39:54):
So some of it you have to kind of handle that way.
AJV (39:57):
So what, so why did so what was the basis for getting rid of these non-disparagement clauses? Just
AWB (40:04):
They’ve been legal for a while, but no one was talking about them. Yeah,
AJV (40:07):
So I this is, I don’t know why it is like it’s, this has been in the last two years and
AWB (40:12):
People, it’s, yeah, it’s been talked about more. So it’s a federal trade commission rule and it’s consumer protection. So it’s meant to protect customers from being able to speak truthfully about their interactions with a business. So you can’t, it’s kind of like a gag on them being able to, which is why a lot of people want to include non-disparagement in their contracts with their customers. So it’s, it’s still legal in other scenarios. It is becoming a little more iffy in the employment scenario. And I’m not an employment lawyer, so Yeah. I’m not gonna misspeak about that. But it, it is nuanced there. I do know. Yeah. so if you are wanting to include a non-disparagement clause in a, like a severance agreement or a termination agreement, talk with your lawyer because first mm-Hmm. , yes. I’m not a hundred percent up to date on that. But I know that in customer contracts it has always, or not always, but it has for a while been not allowed.
AJV (41:04):
But I think just everyone, as you’re paying attention to that, just make sure that you are looking at your contracts to make sure they do say things that people are aware of. It’s like you cannot falsely exaggerate or make false claims. And I do contract reviews for some of our clients on occasion. Anyone listening, do not email me. not send you my copy. I’m not an attorney. You can email Autumn. She is. I am not. But I’m,
AWB (41:28):
You’re delighted to review your attorney, your
AJV (41:30):
Contract. Correct. In passing, like, Hey, can you look at this, this? And it’s like, and you don’t have anything in there about cannots. And I think that’s back to setting proper expectations of Yeah. However common sense at things. Sometimes it’s good to have common sense in writing. So that would be one. And then since you’ve kind of like, this kind of came up for both of us, like this new non-compete bill that has passed. Yes. Which will be nationwide.
AWB (41:53):
Yeah. And so that is actually a regulation from the Department of Labor. So it’s not a law, it’s a regulation, but it has just come out. It has not been, you know, they have a publication period where people can comment. So it has not gone into effect yet. And actually we’re sending out a client alert, I think it’s like on my desk to review . So we’ll be sending out a client alert if you’re an a WB from client and listening, you’ll get that. About kind of our recommendations, best practices. What we are recommending now generally is just start going through your files and checking to see if any of your agreements have a non-compete so that whenever this shakes out, there’s lawsuits been being filed, we don’t even know if it’s going to be Mm-Hmm. , you know, in effect ever. So while that’s all shaking out, we’re not recommending any big changes yet.
AWB (42:39):
But just kind of like, this is a great time to just see if this even matters to you. If you’re drafting new agreements, you might consider leaving it out because it may or may not be valid. One thing in the rule is it, it says if you include a non-compete after the rule goes into effect or maybe if you have one, I can’t remember exactly, but you have to actually send a notice to the person who signed that contract. Like, Hey, that non-compete you signed is no longer valid. Oh. So I think most pe most people don’t want to have to do that.
AJV (43:08):
Interesting. So, so what about preexisting signed contracts? Those stand, it’s just anything new?
AWB (43:14):
No, the non-compete would not be enforceable,
AJV (43:17):
But, but you wouldn’t have to send out something to previously signed yeah.
AWB (43:20):
Don’t quote me on this because it is detailed and nuanced, but read our client alert,
AJV (43:25):
, Uhhuh, . But that would be more like a Yes.
AWB (43:28):
We had a Slack conversation that was like very long about all the nuances, . So
AJV (43:34):
It’s not simple. This is kind of back to the conversation at hand. It’s like, what do you need to know? And if you don’t know, how do you stay in the know? Right. Yeah. So that’s my last question for today. Other than signing up for this newsletter as a very entry level basic, have some sort of source of information. Yeah. Yeah. If people don’t have an attorney on demand or they don’t have a legal counsel, or they don’t, you know, that’s most people, right? Yeah, absolutely. How on God’s screen earth are we supposed to stay up to date with this stuff?
AWB (44:04):
You’re gonna do the best you can. And that is, you know, again, proportional to the size of your business and the risk. You know, this is something a lot of people start taking more seriously around half a million, a million, several million in revenue. So if you’re there and you still are not really up to date on all this like judgment free zone, do not beat yourself up. But you can always do better tomorrow.
AJV (44:27):
But do something and
AWB (44:30):
Yeah. I mean, just the bigger your business gets, the, you know, some of my clients come to us saying, I feel like I’ve got a target on my back now. Mm-Hmm. And like, I’ve really gotta make sure I’m all buttoned up and that if somebody comes at me that I’m like ready to go. Yeah. So there, there will hit, you will hit a point in your business where it becomes more important. And I’m not saying ignore it, but
AJV (44:47):
Once you’re doing like seven figures and annual revenue, would you say, Hey, like this is,
AWB (44:51):
You definitely need a lawyer. Yes. Yes.
AJV (44:53):
So that’s everyone who’s listening.
AWB (44:55):
I would, I would say probably like half a million to a million is a great, that’s a great entry point for us. ’cause There’s enough to do you Mm-Hmm. . You know, it’s not just, oh, I need a contract and then we’ll never hear from you again. ’cause We love long-term relationships. We like to, to be kind of a, an essential part of the team.
AJV (45:10):
You know, and I, you know, I say this lovingly because we’re friends, but not everyone really wants to pay attorneys. Like people don’t really want.
AWB (45:17):
I understand. It is not the most fun money to spend. I know. Oh.
AJV (45:20):
But I think that’s a good benchmark for everyone listening. It’s like, even if it’s, sometimes you just have to spend money even when you don’t want to, but
AWB (45:27):
In your budget, it’s like, it should be in your budget just like marketing or just like working with a bookkeeper or a CPA. Like, it really is a cost of doing business. You cannot ignore it.
AJV (45:37):
And I would just say from our experiences, it’s much cheaper when you’re proactive. It’s cheaper, it’s always cheaper when there isn’t anything pending. Right? Mm-Hmm. . And it’s, it’s cheaper to do on the front end for sure. It’s always easier and cheaper to do it when you do it. Right. Right. And part of doing it right means that you’ve got the right protection in place and really the right education, which I think a lot of this is a lot of free legal counsel. So you can just, you know,
AWB (46:07):
Information, not advice.
AJV (46:08):
Thank you, . That’s right. Well, and I’ll,
AWB (46:11):
I’ll plug one other thing. Yeah. I’ll plug one other thing before we go, which is we have our own podcast, the Legal Roadmap podcast, which I have stopped publishing new episodes, but there is a ton of evergreen content. So if you’re looking for like the latest and greatest, it will not be there. But if you’re looking to learn some basics about copyrights, trademarks, employment law, all these things that you need in a personal brand business, go check out the legal roadmap.
AJV (46:34):
Yes. And we’ll put that in the show notes as well. Autumn, this is so helpful, so, so knowledgeable and helpful. And y’all just all got at least $650 worth of free legal information. That advice. Just information. That’s right. So thank you. This was so, so helpful. And again, I just wanna do one more plug for the newsletter because I subscribed to it and it is super helpful and I’m constantly telling people on our team, listen to this one, go watch this. Like, read this. It’s a wb firm.com/newsletter. And then also if you wanna just stay in touch with Autumn, get additional tips, learn stuff, and also the a WB firm, check them out on Instagram. A w firm is their handle. Again, I’ll put all of that in the show notes. And last but not least check out the podcast even though that they’re not posting new episodes you can go and get some evergreen content, which is the Legal Roadmap Podcast. Autumn, thank you so much. This was so helpful. Thank you hj, for asking great questions. This is a fun conversation. And for everybody else, check out the recap version that we will pose shortly. We’ll see you next time on the Influential Personal Brand. Bye everybody.

Ep 483: 5 Techniques to Gain Thousands of Social Media Followers | Ryan Pineda Episode Recap

RV (00:06):
Welcome to the Influential Personal Brand podcast. This is the place where we help mission-driven messengers, just like you learn how to build and monetize your personal brand. My name is Rory Vaden and I’m the co-founder of Brand Builders Group, a hall of fame speaker, and New York Times bestselling author. And this show is to help experts learn how to become more wealthy and well-known. I know you’re gonna love it. Thanks for being here. Let’s get started. Here’s how I grew by 3000 followers in three weeks. It was actually five simple ideas that I just wanna share with you. The first thing was to focus on starters. Another term for this would be the hook, but it’s really paying attention to the opening first few seconds of your videos. And I don’t know if you’re like me, but everyone throws that word around like, you gotta have a great hook.
RV (00:58):
It’s all about the hook. Start with hook. And I’m like, what exactly is a hook? Because nobody seems to be able to explain what that means. I’ve heard that term for years, but something finally clicked in the last few weeks, and I’m gonna share now what I’m using as my definition of a hook to see if it helps you. And a hook is simply this. Tell people what you’re about to tell them. Tell them what you’re about to tell them, right? Think about how they advertise the news. They say, A new study reveals a food that causing cancer will tell you what it is to tonight at nine, right? Like they tell you what they’re gonna, they they tell you what they’re gonna tell you. And in Toastmasters, where I started my professional speaking career, Toastmasters used to have a phrase where they said, tell the audience what you’re gonna tell ’em, then tell ’em, then tell ’em what you told ’em.
RV (01:48):
And now I’m realizing, oh, that’s the same opening formula for a great video. Tell ’em what you’re about to tell ’em. You’ll notice that I started this video saying, here’s how I grew my followers by th here’s how I grew by 3000 followers in the last three weeks. I’m telling you what I’m about to tell you. I don’t launch in to telling you how to do it. I’m telling you about what I’m about to tell you. And that’s what the key to a hook is. It’s super duper simple. So focus on your starters. Focus on the opening first three seconds of your videos. Tell ’em what you’re gonna tell ’em, and I think you’ll see an immediate improvement. The second thing is screen quality. And by screen quality, I just mean production value. We got my main man, Chris, over here. We finally invested to get a good camera and get a a, a, a decent, decent microphone.
RV (02:43):
And I think that’s made a really big difference. If you go look at some of my old videos, they’re just not as visually capturing because they’re not as quality in terms of the resolution. The content, I would argue, is just as good as it has ever been. But the production value is definitely up a notch. And I think at this point, if you’re trying to compete online, you need to make that investment. Why? Because all the other people who are doing it are doing that. And so you’re not, you’re competing not just on the quality of your ideas, but you’re competing also on the quality of your production value. And so it’s time to make that investment if you’re ready to really get serious. So that’s the screen quality. The third thing is stimulus stimuli. We have increased the cuts in our video editing dramatically.
RV (03:33):
Again, my man, Chris, over here rocking the camera is doing cuts every one or two seconds. And when I mean cut, if you just watch a video and count how many seconds go between each time the screen changes, something moves, right? A talking head video is just me here talking. The camera is not cutting. It’s the same view for an extended period of time. But adding stimulus means you’re adding cuts. You’re showing other pictures, other you know, it can be captions. It can be moving things around on the screen. It can be having pullout quotes. It can be dropping in emojis. It can be dropping in B-roll footage. It can be dropping in stock footage of other things. You can be referencing news media articles, but the camera is cutting every couple seconds. And again, this is just a tactic to hold people’s attention, which is a huge part of what growing your followers is all about.
RV (04:31):
The algorithms reward people who hold people’s attention on the platform. The fourth thing is stories. Tell stories. Stories from your life are an automatic great format and formula for capturing attention. There’s something about the human brain that we are drawn to stories. So for example, I spoke at the Keller Williams National Convention. There were 17,000 people there, and I had an opportunity to share the stage with Tony Robbins, Mel Robbins, and several other speakers. Well, I told the story when I came back of how I watched Mel Robbins speak. And I stayed two days longer in Vegas than I planned to, just so I could get to see her. And I just shared the story of what I thought of her presentation. Well, unbeknownst to me or unplanned by me, she saw the post and she reshared it. So part of the, the value was certainly the size of her audience.
RV (05:29):
But what really was powerful was the story. It was, it was sharing a story of what did I do and what did I learn? And that’s really the simple format for a story is what happened to you and what did you learn? And I’ve got other videos that talk about the four parts of telling a great story. But every picture in your phone is a story. If you just kind of go through your phone, camera roll, every single photo is a story. Tell the story of who was there, what were you doing, what happened, what did you learn? And how does that apply to the people who are in your audience tell great stories because they automatically serve as great hooks and great lessons and great attention grabbers and attention keepers. And finally, number five is stages. Getting on stages. As I mentioned, I was at a very large event, and to this day, the fastest way that I have ever seen to grow my email list, my social media following my customers or just new friends and fans, is to be out speaking on stages.
RV (06:36):
This is one of our expertise at Brand Builders Group. This is one of the things I’ve spent my life learning and that our team specializes in teaching you how to do, is to get on stages. Now, they don’t have to be thousands of people. You don’t even have to be paid to be on ’em. But the shortest distance between someone who is a complete stranger, becoming a lifelong fan is a world class one hour presentation after seeing you on stage. And by the way, if you’d like to talk to someone on our team about some of the strategies we use to help personal brands get on more stages, just click the link that is somewhere around this video and we’ll set you up with a free call. But there you have it. The five strategies that I’ve used to grow my followers more than 3000 in the last three weeks. It starts with the starts have great hooks, then it’s all about screen quality up your production game. Third, have more stimulus, more jump cuts, and more advanced editing happening inside of your videos. Fourth, tell more stories. And fifth, get on more stages. If you do those five things, I promise, you’ll see your followers grow.

Ep 482: Launching a Live Event Business with Ryan Pineda

RV (00:02):
I’m so excited to introduce to you one of my favorite new friends. Also one of my favorite people in all of social media to follow. His name is Ryan Pineda. And Ryan was a former pro baseball player. We’re gonna talk about his journey. He went from professional baseball to real estate investor. And that started in like 2010. And he since has invested over a hundred million dollars in over a hundred million dollars of real estate. And then he became an entrepreneur. And he has founded seven different businesses that have gone on to generate seven or eight figures in annual revenue. He also has 2 million social followers online, has generated over a billion views with his his videos. He lives in Vegas with his wife, Mindy. They got three kids. And he’s just a really amazing guy. We’ve got some fun stuff going on together that will tell you about if you stick around to the very end. Ryan has a, a conference that I will tell you about and we’ll talk a little bit about that. But we wanna hear the journey of how all of this happened. Ryan, welcome to the show.
RP (01:11):
Thanks for having me, Rory. And man, I just appreciate, by the way, all your help behind the scenes, you know your willingness to, to answer questions and all the different things I got going on and serve and everything else, dude. So it means a lot.
RV (01:24):
Yeah. Well, it’s my pleasure, man. I, I you know, I love helping people as much as I can and, and obviously networking and you know, people know that I’m a hardcore bible thumping Jesus freak. And especially when I find other believers out there in the business world, I’m always like, Hey, like, I wanna help. I wanna help however I can. So, walk me through this story. You, so you were playing for the Oakland A’s, right? Is what the, the story was. So how do you go from pro baseball to real estate investor? Take me on that journey quick.
RP (01:57):
Yeah, so I grew up just wanting to play baseball my whole life. It was all I ever did, and I was fortunate to be, you know, a really good player. Every step along the way. You know, I was on varsity as a freshman, then I get a D one college scholarship and become an All American, all those things. And then I get drafted by the Oakland A’s in 2010. The only problem is in pro baseball, you have to start in the minor leagues. It’s not like the NBA and the NFL, where, you know, you go straight to the top and you start making millions. And the minor leagues in baseball, you make 1200 bucks a month. Yeah, that’s what it was back when I was playing. Wow. And you only get paid while you’re playing, so it’s six months outta the year.
RP (02:38):
So I was essentially making seven grand a year in the minor leagues. Wow. Yeah. So I didn’t have a choice. I did not want be an entrepreneur. I didn’t want to do real estate. I did wanted to eat , you know, and so I ended up getting my real estate license the same year I got drafted. ’cause I knew I was gonna need to do something to make money in the off season. So, you know, I became a realtor. And what I didn’t realize back then was that was literally the hardest time, pretty much in history to be a realtor. The market had just crashed. Prices were at all time lows, which was great if you were an investor. The problem was no one had money. Everyone just got wiped out from, you know, the great recession. And as a realtor, I’m just selling the deals.
RP (03:25):
And so when, you know, your commission is based on the sales price and prices are at all time lows and no one has money to buy, it becomes really tough. And you’re 21 years old and you don’t even know what you’re doing. So it was a really hard time. You know, the average price of a home back in 2010 in Vegas, which is obviously a big market, was a hundred thousand dollars. Wow. So if I was lucky, I could make $3,000 selling a home that was super hard to sell back then. And I quickly learned, I hated it. As far as representing, you had a, you had an early knack for picking careers to go broke, it sounds like. . Yeah. That’s what you, yeah. Yep. So I realized quick. I was like, dude, this ain’t for me. I sold a couple of houses.
RP (04:08):
I got really mad, honestly, because I knew these were great deals. You know, I and I, after a couple of years, one deal just finally put me through the edge. You know, it was a house that was built in literally two years before, 1800 square feet in Vegas, four bedroom, three bath. It was a hundred thousand or it was $90,000. That’s was the list price. Wow. Literally never been lived in. And I’m telling this guy, I’m like, dude, this is a crazy deal. Like, you can’t lose, you know, you could go rent this right now for 1200 bucks, you know, like you can’t lose. And he’s like, ah, I don’t know, man. I think it’s gonna go down. And I’m like, what’s it gonna go down to? Is it gonna be free ? I don’t understand. I’m like, what? How do you lose on this?
RP (04:51):
Where do you go down from zero? Yeah. Like, yeah, this house just sold for 400,000 a couple of years ago, and you, you think it’s going down from 90, you can’t even build a house for 90 grand. So, you know, he is like, you don’t get it, kid. One day you’ll get it. And you know, at that point, that was the tipping point for me. I was like, all right, this ain’t for me. So I actually quit real estate along this path. What ended up happening was I, I met my now wife and so, you know, we get engaged. And, and while we’re engaged, I actually get released from the Oakland A’s. So, you know, I I spent three years in the minor leagues with them, and I get released in spring training. And so we’re engaged and I’m like, well babe, I really don’t know what I’m gonna do because I thought I was gonna, you know, make it in baseball.
RP (05:40):
I’ve already, you know, failed at that. I failed at real estate and now we’re about to get married and you’re in college not making any money and getting in debt. And she was gonna school to be a teacher, so she was never gonna make money. And I was like, I really don’t know what I’m good at or what I’m gonna do, but I’ll figure it out. So we ended up getting married and I end up furnishing our apartment with all of our wedding money. You know, we got some gifts and stuff, Uhhuh, . And I bought all this furniture on Craigslist. And I remember looking at the apartment, I was like, man, I got a really good deal on all this furniture. I bet you I could flip it and make some money. ’cause I was always a hustler growing up. I flipped Pokemon cards, I was flipping cell phones, I was flipping anything I could make money at.
RP (06:25):
So like, I just had this knack for finding deals and flipping, which is why it frustrated me as a realtor because I was finding great deals and people weren’t buying ’em. That’s why I got so mad. So I look at the furniture and I was like, what if I just bought one piece of furniture a day and I flipped it, I could make great money. So I was like, you know what, I’m just gonna do it. So I buy a couch and I bring it back to our little apartment. She’s like, why did you buy another couch? Like, trust me. Okay. I, I have this idea. I ended up selling the couch and making 200 bucks, and I was like, okay, I’m gonna just do this like every day. If I just buy one couch a day, I’m gonna make six grand a month. And sure enough, that’s exactly what happened.
RP (07:09):
I ended up interesting. I ended up starting my first business flipping furniture. You know, I, I got a storage unit. I was putting all the couches there. I was cleaning ’em, posting ’em on Craigslist, offering free delivery. And sure enough, it went from 2000 a month to 4,000 to 6,000 to 8,000. I was like, we are freaking rich. This is crazy. I’m making more in a month than I was making it a year as a minor league player. And, you know, that was my first successful business. Now, during this time too, I was also still playing baseball. So I ended up signing a deal with an independent team, and I ended up going to play five more seasons. So I played eight seasons overall in professional baseball. Cool. But during every season I was always hustling, you know, making money in weird ways, .
RP (07:56):
And so from there, 2015 happens. So this is five years after the fact. We’re on our one year anniversary and well, this is late 2014, early 2015. And I’m praying, and I’m like, God, you know, I’m grateful that I, you know, I’m providing for my, my family. Now, my wife, we didn’t have kids yet. You know, I’m grateful for this couch flipping thing, but I know I’m called for more. You know, I’m not supposed to just flip couches the rest of my life. And I was like, what should I do? And it was the first time I ever like really heard God, like, audibly tell me something. And I just heard like this whisper of real estate. And in my mind I’m like, real estate, I already did that and failed. I’m not gonna do that again. Like, it sucked being a realtor.
RP (08:45):
And sure enough, I see this TV commercial pop up like no more than an hour later. And it’s like, you wanna learn how to flip houses today, this big infomercial, you know, with no money, no credit, nothing. And I’m like, scam, I’m not doing that. And I just felt like the Holy Spirit in me telling me to look further into it. So I get on Google and I’m like, I’m like, what’s, what’s, can you buy real estate with no money? Nobody ever taught me this in realtor school. Like, that’s not true. And so I look it up and I find this website called BiggerPockets, and it’s like, oh yeah, you can totally buy real estate without money. Here’s how you know, you can do wholesaling, private money, all these different things. And I was like, holy crap. This is exactly what I’ve been looking for.
RP (09:29):
I always knew how to find deals. That was never my problem. I just didn’t have money. If I could just sell these deals and make money, I’ll kill it. So sure enough, I told my wife, I was like, Hey, we’re flipping houses. And she’s like, all right. It’s just like flipping couches, but with more zeros. I mean, what could get wrong? Yeah. , what could go wrong? Right. You know, I’m just gonna max out our credit cards and get, you know, high interest loans. But what could go wrong? Uhhuh. . So , you know, we I came back and went back to Vegas and on the flight home, actually, this was the first time I ever encountered prophecy. And I didn’t know what it was at the time because I grew up in the Baptist church. So they never talked about these things. And this guy’s sitting on the plane next to me.
RP (10:10):
My wife and I weren’t sitting together ’cause we were so cheap, we didn’t want to want to pay for a signed seating. So forget about that. Right. That’s, that was the old me. All right. Now this guy sitting next to me and I’m sitting here reading this book about how to flip houses with no money. And it was by my friend Brandon, my now friend Brandon Turner, who’s a great dude. And he’s basically like, you know, talking about all these ways you can flip houses. And the guy goes, Hey, what are you reading? I was like, well, I’m reading you know, about flipping houses. I’m, I’m about to go into this business. And he’s like, so I don’t talk to people a lot like on planes and stuff, but God wants me to tell you that you’re gonna be very successful in this and you’re gonna change a lot of lives.
RP (10:54):
Wow. By doing this. Mind you, I’d never flipped the house. You know, this was just an idea. This is some random guy on the airplane. And he goes, and on top of that, I wanna give you my information. He’s like, ’cause I flipped hundreds of homes. He was an older guy. He’s like, I’ve done all these different things that the book was explaining that I didn’t even understand yet. He was talking about seller finance and all these weird terms. He’s like, dude, I’ve been doing that forever. He’s like, you need any help? Here’s my stuff. And it wasn’t that I wasn’t gonna do it, but that was like the confirmation I needed of like, alright, it’s about to go down. Fascinating. Yeah. So we ended up getting back home. I find my first deal I had to max out all my credit cards to get a down payment. So I maxed out our credit cards between me and Mindy for 50 grand. Wow. And got a hard money loan at like 13% and bought our first flip. Now fast forward through it, you know, we ended up making good money. We made 25 grand on that first deal. And
RV (11:58):
Walk me, walk me through that a little bit. So you’re, you’re putting, you’re putting $60,000 down on a $300,000 house or something?
RP (12:07):
Well, prices weren’t that high yet. So what happened was we had 50 grand in credit. So I’m like, well, we might as well just get it all, you know, even if we don’t need it, like, let’s just have cash in the bank. So I cash advanced, I had like these 0%, you know, credit offers and balance transfers. And so I’m like, let me just get it all at 0%. So we got it all at 50 grand in the bank to show liquidity for a hard money loan. And then, you know, I find this deal for $99,000 in Vegas. And so we buy that first home. I sold it in 51 days for 135,000. And I, I put like a thousand bucks into it. So we made money really quick and during that time I bought a second home with the rest of the cash and another hard money loan. That ended up making me 15 grand. And so did really good on the first two rolled that into every dollar back into another deal and another deal. I kept my credit cards maxed out for years. You know, just continuing to roll cash into new deals. You know, flipped five houses that first year in 2015. The next year I flipped 20. The next year after that I flipped 50. And then I flipped 150 in the fourth year. Wow. And then we’ve been doing over a hundred ever since, even to this day.
RV (13:23):
Wow. That’s pretty ballsy . That’s to, I mean, that’s max, that’s like laying it all on the line.
RP (13:32):
That’s how I always have operated though. You know, at the end of the day, it’s like, if I feel this convicted about an idea, you know, we’re either all in or we’re not doing it. There’s no in between.
RV (13:42):
Fascinating. Yeah. So then you go from that. So you’re learning how to flip houses, you’re learning how to basically secure financing. You’re doing this, you’re good at, you’re good in making deals. So you’re basically just buying them, fixing them up, turning around, selling them. Yep. Making a profit on the difference.
RP (13:58):
RV (14:00):
And then all of a sudden, what, what, where does social media come on the scene? Like, why do you start going, oh, let’s do a podcast and let’s put a bunch of time and money into social media. Like where does that show up?
RP (14:11):
Yeah, so let’s say from 2015 to 2019, all I really did was flip houses. And a lot of people don’t know that. You know, most people think, oh, this dude just had a bunch of businesses all at once and like, they grew. It’s like, no, that’s not what happened. Like, I pretty much spent five years only focused on flipping houses and becoming really, really good at it. Now, during that time, like I learned how to run a business. Like I was raising millions of dollars of capital. I was hiring people, we were marketing, we were selling, I was handling construction projects like anything with running a business, I was learning it. I was also still playing baseball at this time too. I retired in 2017, so I probably flipped 80 homes while I was playing. Which people don’t know either. So I had to learn how to delegate in order to keep playing baseball. ’cause That was still my dream, dude. Like real estate was plan B, you know, getting to the big leagues was plan A and for many years. So anyways I ended up retiring and you know, real estate’s going great. And I ended up opening up our real estate brokerage ’cause that was a logical thing to do. And we grew that to over 200 agents. So that was a success. Then I ended up opening a, a
RV (15:24):
Regular retail real estate brokerage. Yeah.
RP (15:27):
Because I was selling all my flips anyway on the ml. I’m like, why not get my own brokerage? All the exposure from all my own deals. And so that was the thought process. So then I ended up opening a tax firm because so many people were starting to ask me, dude, where do you do your taxes? You know, all this crap. I, ’cause I was developing influence locally, and I ended up opening a tax firm, not really thinking anything of it. I was just like, you know what, if I could just own the tax firm, I’ll like have control of our finances, our bookkeeping, and if we make enough money where it’s like basically pays for itself, that would be great. That was literally my mindset. But that’s not what happened. What ended up happening was it, it built into a multimillion dollar firm, you know, that made millions of dollars. And, you know, we had hundreds and hundreds of clients. I actually sold that company last year to my partner. So that was very successful. But long story short, where social media enters is in 2020 during the pandemic. Yeah. And
RV (16:28):
Hold on a second. So just backing up on the tax firm, like nowhere in your history do I hear accounting , would I hear? But yeah, yeah. You, you ended up making money from these deals and you’re trying to figure out how to minimize your tax liability. And so you figured that out in an entrepreneurial sense. And then you hired some accountants to help you build a tax firm and then sold it even though you never sat for a CPA exam or anything like that.
RP (16:53):
Correct. You know, I ended up going through a bunch of accountants over the years, and I finally found one young guy too that I really liked. And he was working for another tax firm at the time. And you know, I remember this was back in late 2019, he was just, you know, we were doing one of our quarterly parties and he was like, man, you know, I, I really want to quit the firm and start my own. And I was like, why don’t we just start one together? Like, I, I know how to get clients like that won’t be a problem. And we’re like, all right, deal. Let’s do it. Like, that was literally it, . And then we started it at the end of 2019. So it was literally going into the pandemic that we started it. And social media is really what helped it explode because social media ends up, you know, being the, the lead catalyst for all the businesses I’ve started, essentially.
RP (17:42):
But yeah, you know, I never, I know a ton about tax, obviously from having a tax firm now and being in real estate. It’s real estate’s the most tax efficient mechanism like in the world today, period. There’s nothing that gives you more tax benefits than real estate. So it all went hand in hand. But anyways, you know, 2020 happens in March and you know, obviously the world gets shut down. And dude, at the time I had 50 house flips going, so, you know, I got like $20 million of debt on the streets, you know? Wow. Just sitting there and I’m like, huh, I wonder what’s about to happen? You know, like they’re saying that the world might crash, the economy might crash. Like, I don’t know man, and I can’t really do anything about it. You know, these properties are here and there’s nothing I can do.
RP (18:29):
I’ve already bought ’em and I can’t do, like, I can’t go to the office. I can’t do anything. So this is probably the second big God moment I ever had in my life. The first I told you about with flipping houses. The second was, I had multiple people during this time tell me, Ryan, you should make YouTube videos. You should do TikTok. I’m like, dude, what am I gonna do TikTok this stupid kids app? Like, what are we doing here? And I’m like, who watches YouTube? Honestly, that’s what I thought. I was like, who literally watches YouTube? They’re like, people watch YouTube. What are you talking about? I’m like, I go to YouTube to learn how to tie shoes or something. Like how to tie a tie. I don’t go there to like watch stuff. And I soon learned that obviously people go to YouTube to like, watch stuff.
RP (19:14):
And I start watching all these entrepreneurs well I wouldn’t even call ’em entrepreneurs. They’re more just like content creators at that time. So I started seeing these real estate guys. ’cause I was like, who do you guys watch? Just tell me who you think sure is the best. So they start telling me these guys who are now my friends, like Graham Stefan and meet Kevin and, and these other YouTube guys. And I was like, okay, so what have they done? And the reality was at that point, they hadn’t really done much. Like they couldn’t hold a candle to anything I had done in the real estate world. And I was like, so you guys get all your information from them when it comes to real estate. You know, they own like 10 houses. Like I flipped hundreds of homes. And they’re like, yeah, but they’re great.
RP (19:58):
I was like, okay. So I start watching their videos and they start talking about how much they’re making just from like YouTube AdSense and sponsors. They’re making hundreds of thousands a month. And I was like, wait a minute. These guys have no overhead, no office, no debt, no employees, none of this crap that I gotta deal with. And they make more money. Explain to me how this makes any sense. Like, I’m just thinking in my head, I’m like, I’m not gonna be a hater. Like I’m in the wrong business. I need to be where they’re doing media is the business. Like, it just clicked. And it was only because, like I said, I, I know God’s trying to speak to me when I ignore things. And then it just keeps coming up over and over again. And so that’s what happened. I was like, YouTube’s stupid.
RP (20:52):
Then another person’s like, Hey, you should look into YouTube. Hey, you should look into YouTube. And I was like, all right, fine. Lemme look into it. So anyways, long story short, during the pandemic, I start making YouTube videos in tiktoks. Now, dude, at that time people were laughing at me because I was this real estate guy making tiktoks and nobody understood it at that time. Entrepreneurs weren’t on it yet, but I was like, dude, let me tell you, I think this thing’s gonna be big. ’cause I’m not even a social media guy, but this is addicting watching this stuff. So I just start frigging making videos, it pops off, I get like 400,000 followers in 90 days or something crazy. Like it went nuts fast. And then YouTube starts to pick up, actually my most famous video was about flipping couches, which I told you that story before.
RP (21:39):
And people were like, dude, this helped me so much during the pandemic. How, because I just went through a tutorial. I’m like, this is how you flip couches. And you could go all make five grand plus a month easily. I guarantee it. And people are like, this changed my life. I still, people, I see people to this day who are like, bro, I flipped couches and it really helped me out. So, you know, long story short, I make these videos, YouTube’s tiktoks, everything. My following grows pretty quickly in 2020. And 2021 I launched the podcast and that thing grows pretty quickly. And you know, now it’s basically like I’m four years in the game of taking media seriously. And it was probably the smartest move I ever made. And, you know, that stemmed into, you know, other businesses raising more capital learning, digital marketing, learning, you know, all the tricks of the trade. And you know, it’s opened up the doors to so many relationships. And so you know, that’s kinda like how it all came about to where we’re at today.
RV (22:43):
Amazing. So, so on social, how do you think about social media today? Like h how, how do you think about the strategy for how frequently you’re posting what you’re posting? Because you do have multiple businesses going on, but you found a, you found a banner and a container for all of this, which is basically money, right? The wealthy way, which is like so that isn’t, is an, is a nice container that holds real estate and tax and entrepreneurship and, you know, whatever, all things business. But like strategy wise, what, what, what, what’s working on social media? How are you doing it now? How are you thinking about it? Like, talk to me about some of that. So
RP (23:32):
I think social media is always changing, right? Just like business. And so what worked four years ago does not work today. And so you gotta kind of always be at the forefront of testing new things, trying new things and everything else. So what I can say is this, okay, as an entrepreneur the number one way that social media helps us obviously is our business. And so the first thing to understand is what’s the goal of your social media? Are you trying to drive leads to your business or are you trying to become like a straight up influencer and make new streams of income from ad revenue and sponsors and all that stuff? That was never my intent, you know, I was always like, I’ll make far more money pushing traffic to my business. I don’t need to be an influencer. So I think number one, staff clarity on what you’re doing it for as far as business goes.
RP (24:26):
Now here’s the other part. Social media leads to a lot of other things too with relationships. That’s how we got connected, right? Yeah. It leads to opportunities would just different businesses that you otherwise wouldn’t have been in different streams of income. So like, there’s a lot of benefits to doing it. The question is, what’s the best way today? That’s basically what you’re asking. My my philosophy is this, for somebody to become a customer in your company, the number one thing they have to do is trust you. That’s how somebody buys. They have to first trust you. So then the deeper question becomes, well, how do you build trust? Right? And I I you’re a branding expert, so what do you think? How do you build trust with somebody?
RV (25:13):
I mean, the way that part of how we describe it is we trust people that we see, we trust people that we know intimate details about their life. Mm-Hmm. . And we trust people that we learn from. So those are like, kind of like three of the quickest things of just going, like, people gotta see you, they gotta learn from you, and they have to feel like they know you the way that they would know a real person in real life.
RP (25:35):
So how would you go about learning those things about them?
RV (25:40):
I mean, you’re sharing ’em on social, I mean that basically turned Yeah. That, that, that inverts into like a social strategy, right? Is like teaching what, teaching what, you know, sharing who you are, like sharing some of your belief systems Yeah. And then physically them seeing you, right? As a matter of like, basically video and photography is like, they have to be able to see you. Like
RP (26:01):
Yeah. They trust you. So I would, I would take it in a step even deeper, right? So I’ll ask this with another que this is what Jesus did, right? He just asked a bunch of questions all the time. He never gave a straight answer. So like, with aj, your wife, how long did you guys date before you got married? Mm. I know the answer ’cause I listened to your podcast, but just for
RV (26:22):
Everyone you listened to our Eternal Life podcast.
RP (26:24):
Yeah. Yep. Yeah.
RV (26:27):
The yeah. So we started dating in 2007 and then we got engaged in the fall of 2009. So it was like two and a half years.
RP (26:37):
So you had two and a half years to get to know each other. Yeah. And then you got, you got engaged and, and you got married. So the simple answer is, in order to trust somebody, it requires time. You have to spend time with somebody. That’s literally the number one thing. Like all those things that you described happen by just spending time. Sure. And so the question then becomes not necessarily how many views you can get somebody to watch you or how many impressions you can get, but how much time do they actually spend? Because there are people that see me, let’s say on a reel or something or an ad, but they’ve never spent time with me. They, they could recognize me and they could be like, oh yeah, I, I know that guy with the hair, right? But they don’t know me. Like you said, they don’t know the intimate side of me.
RP (27:27):
What I believe they’ve never learned from me. They could just, I’m recognizable to them. The key is for somebody to become a customer, they have to spend time with you. That’s it. Right? And so we know from like sales and stuff that, you know, there’s like the seven hours, if somebody spends seven hours with you, you know, there’s a good chance they’re gonna buy. And this is why events are so effective. ’cause It’s like a hyper way to spend time with somebody. If I throw a full two day event, dude, you just spent 48 hours with me, you know, like, we’re gonna really get to know each other. You’re gonna develop a lot of trust. So how this plays into the social media strategy is very simple. The number one way to spend time with somebody in today’s world of social media is a podcast.
RP (28:08):
There’s no other form of content that’s long form like that, that’s raw, that you actually get to hear what they’re really like. It’s not scripted. You truly get to know the person through a podcast. And the beauty of a podcast is you can chop it up, repurpose it, get all your other short form clips and everything else that you need too. So it’s not only like the best way to build trust, it’s also the most efficient way to film content. And then the way we look at it is we simply just use our short form repurpose clips as like marketing to get them to watch the long form. And so through our research, what we have discovered is that the longer your podcast is, the better. Most people have the wrong idea about podcasts thinking that, oh, well, you know, people don’t wanna listen to like a super long podcast.
RP (29:01):
It’s not true. Joe Rogan’s been doing three hour podcasts for a long time. Patrick vda, his podcasts are going ultra long. You go look at the biggest podcast in the world right now, they’re all an hour and a half to three hours every episode. And you just start to think about how much trust these guys are building with their audience because of the time spent. And so now the new thing that we look at is not followers or views, but it’s watch time. That’s our most important metric. And so last year on YouTube, we had 1.2 million hours of watch time on YouTube. Wow. Wow. And when you think about that, that’s 150 years almost. So people spend 150 years with me in one year. And so you start to think about the concept of leverage in that way. It’s like, man, if I could go get 10 million hours, you know, in the next year or two, that’s 1500 years that people are gonna spend with me.
RP (30:02):
That’s an insane number. Is your YouTube the podcast also? I mean, is that how you think of it as like, it’s this video podcast. Now I doing that and that’s not even counting the audio downloads and ’cause audio downloads don’t tell you watch time and the way YouTube does, you know, they just go by downloads. So it’s actually the number’s a lot higher than that. But that’s just the, the clear number. I know that YouTube tells me that’s the most important metric because I know if you spend time with me, we’re gonna do something together. Like that’s all that it comes down to. So we just want to get people spending time with us as much as possible. And that’s the game of social media and business. Now, you know, we’re in competition with Netflix, we’re in competition with books, we’re in competition with YouTube.
RP (30:48):
We’re in competition with literally anything that’s entertainment. Here’s another thing to think about. For all the entrepreneurs listening, we know that money can be printed. And so there’s an infinite supply of money at the end of the day. But time is the one thing that we, it it is truly capped per person. Basically the studies have found that we have about four hours per day of discretionary time. You know, think about it, we’re gonna sleep eight hours, we’re gonna work eight hours the other four hours, you know, we gotta go eat. We gotta, you know, put our kids to bed. We gotta, you know, do things. But we basically have four hours a day to do whatever we want. Those of you with toddlers know that you spend four hours a day trying to put your kids to bed. Exactly. . Exactly. So guys like us have less, and then other people maybe have eight, right?
RP (31:37):
Yeah. So, but the average is four hours and that’s never gonna change. It just isn’t. Unless they figure out how to make people not work and not sleep. So four hours is literally capped per person. So if I’m like Rory, like when you tell me that, you’re like, dude, you’re one of my favorite people to watch. That means a lot to me because I know you have four hours to go spend on whatever you want. You could go watch Netflix, you could go watch a movie, you could go watch a TV show, social media, a podcast, a listen to an audio book. They’re all competing for the same four hours. And so the fact that you chose to listen or watch something of mine says a lot about, you know, what you value. And, you know, it means a lot to me because I know like the cost of it, it’s easy for you to go pay me a thousand dollars. That’s not as significant as choosing to go spend hours consuming content. Mm-Hmm. . And that’s what people don’t understand yet, is that the money is easy, it’s the time that we’re all after. And that’s why Facebook and YouTube are, are so valuable because of that.
RV (32:46):
So I wanna come back to the events conversation. Yeah. So this is something else that you do really well. When we started our first business, so we started in 2006. You know, we ultimately grew it to 200 people. It was eight figures when we sold in 2018. But for the first four years, from 2006 to like 2010, all we did was live events. Like we, all we did was put like 750 to a thousand people in a room. And it was grueling, right? Like we did not do digital marketing, we did all human sales force, like calling outta the phone book. Then we’d go to their office, we’d do a free one hour presentation, we try to convince ’em to buy tickets to come. And we would do that for four months and we would generate revenue, right? We would generate a few hundred thousand in revenue. But like when you add up the venue, the, the av, the speakers, the coffee, the like workbooks, like we would lose money at least a third of the time. Mm-Hmm . And if we made anything, it usually wasn’t that much. You’re doing an event right now, almost, is it once a quarter you’re doing an event
RP (33:54):
For our big events? Yeah. But we’ll even run little workshops at the office like, you know, once a month or every other month.
RV (34:00):
So how are you doing events once a quarter. So tell us about the event. First of all, give us a sense of the order of magnitude here of like how many people are coming to these events and where are they? Yeah. And what it looks like and who the speakers are, et cetera. And then I want to hear about like how you’re doing that and not losing your tail constantly.
RP (34:20):
I know people, it’s, it’s an interesting thing, right? So we have an event called Wealth Con, which you’re talking about, so anybody can go look it up. Wealth con.org is the website and we hold it once a quarter. And if you look on it, it’s advertised as a real estate business and social media event, right? So we have speakers on all three topics. I would say 50% is real estate and then the other 50% is business slash social media. So anyone who wants to learn content, you’re gonna learn some content, you’re gonna wanna learn some business principles, and then you’re gonna learn a lot about real estate. Now the way all this started to just backtrack a little bit, is that back in 2020 when I got on social media, I started doing coaching too. So I never wanted to be a guru or anything.
RP (35:05):
I hated gurus. I don’t know why. I was just like, eh, you don’t need to learn. Like you can learn for free. And yeah, sure I learned for free, but I never leveled up until I started paying people. And very few people are good enough to learn for free. That’s just the reality. So once my mindset shifted you know, we started doing coaching and that first year with no marketing or anything, we made 700 grand. And with that, I just randomly was like, Hey, we should meet to all of our students. And they’re like, yeah, that’d be great. So we had our first ever, well what’s now known today as Wealth Con at my house with eight people in my living room. That was my first group of students. This. Yep. This was right before the pandemic. So this was in like February, late February of 2020.
RP (35:58):
We didn’t know we were about to get shut down. So anyways, I was like, guys, we should just meet. ’cause I think it would be cool. That was it. It was one day. So the next event, the pandemic, you know, they let people out and stuff. And so we meet in like June of 2020 and we meet at my office this time and we have about 50 people or 40 people I can’t remember. And they’re like, yeah, this is great. So once again, this isn’t costing me anything. I’m not making anything. It’s just kind of part of fulfillment for coaching, even though they were never promised it. I was just like, this would be cool. So then August hap or like August, September happens and sure enough, we have another one at the office, but this time the program’s growing.
RP (36:36):
We have like a hundred people and I’m like, dude, we can’t even fit everyone in here. This is too big. So the next meeting in like January of 2021 we get this space downtown with like this big classroom and stuff, and people come, they love it. We go to the bars afterwards downtown Vegas, and it’s great and we just have a good time. So then we do that again one more time and we outgrow that space. So then now I’m in a dilemma. I’m like, all right, well I gotta actually go pay now to have a venue. Up to this point. I’ve never paid anything other than like food costs, like nothing crazy. And I’m like, I’m gonna have to like go spend some coin to go throw this event. So , we get this little casino called the D in Vegas, it’s 50 grand to, to go do the whole event.
RP (37:23):
It could fit like 250 people. And I’m like, all right, well I don’t know. We got 150 students, so I could sell like a hundred tickets. Let me just see if I could kind of break even on my cost. That was my mindset. And so didn’t do any ad spend or anything. But yeah, we go sell a hundred tickets. We make some money on the front end and then at the event, because most of it are students, I don’t wanna pitch or anything. So I’m just like, Hey, if you’re new, join us. Just talk to the team, whatever. That was it. And sure enough, people join and it’s cool. Like we, we make, I don’t know, let’s say a hundred grand profit. And I’m like, wow, now this event actually makes money. It’s not just like hanging out with the current students. That’s cool.
RP (38:02):
So we go and do it again. Well, the next quarter it gets bigger. And so I gotta run a bigger hotel. So we rent the Sahara, which is like a, a little south now. So we’re moving from downtown, which is like the ghetto is part of Vegas South towards now we’re getting to the nice places. So this event has like 500 people now. And now it’s like, all right, well crap, if we’re gonna do it like this, let’s do two days. So we do a two day event now. And same thing, right? We’re not spending any money on marketing the, the, the venue cost for that venue. I don’t even remember now. Maybe it was like a hundred grand or something. And it’s great. We end up making money. Not nothing crazy. I’m not like pitching. When you say
RV (38:43):
You’re not spending money on marketing, you’re just selling these seats through your own direct email and social basically like your own podcast, your own like, just directly to your existing audience and
RP (38:52):
Exactly. Yep. No traffic. Other than organic, right? So we do that two times. So at this point though, they’re starting to get pretty big. And I’m like, all right, this next one, let’s get like, we need a bigger venue. We’re gonna do this legit. I’m gonna get like a speaker lineup. ’cause The other ones were literally like me and three friends. I would just head up three of my buddies. I’m like, come speak, whatever. So this is the first one. This was I think October of 2022. We get 700 people in the Mandalay Bay. I got Alex and Layla Hormoze. They did it for free. They were just friends. And you know, they were already blowing up, but this was obviously like even before they got super, super big. And they killed it. I had other speakers. It was just crazy. And I think we made a million bucks at that event net. Wow. And now you’re saying
RV (39:47):
You’re making a million bucks ’cause you’re selling your coaching at the, at on,
RP (39:51):
At the Yep. So that was my first time ever doing a real pitch, structured the way an event would be. And, you know, I did a real pitch. We structured it, you know, we made money on the front end with ticket sales. Like, everything about it was just, it was a great event. And the value was great. It, and by the way, it wasn’t called Wealth. It still was not called Wealth Con at this point, you know, it was just like the Future Flipper Mastermind. That was what I called it. ’cause My, the company used to be called Future Flipper. That was my real estate education. So then going into 2023, I was like, all right, I’m becoming more than real estate. And I just published The Wealthy Way. And I was like, I’m going all in on this wealthy brand and I’m, I’m rebranding everything to be wealthy.
RP (40:34):
And so we ended up what’s it called? Changing Future Flipper to Wealthy Investor. And then basically all of our other things became wealthy. So eventually we launched Wealthy Creator, which was for teaching people content creation. And we have Wealthy business, and now we have Wealthy Kingdom for Christians. And so everything went around this overall brand, and we changed the event name to Wealth Con. And yeah, you know, in 2023, every single event had over a thousand people. You know, we had, you know, great speakers like Louis House, who’s I know a friend of yours you know, Cody Sanchez, ed Millet the list goes on. Like we’ve had so many crazy great speakers at each event. And this next one’s gonna be at the Caesars Palace April 18th of the 20th. And I think we can get 2000 now. And really all that’s changed is the last about, let’s call it three events.
RP (41:33):
We actually finally started doing paid ads. We never did paid ads up to that point. We sold ’em all organically to that point. So that was why we were always profitable because number one, we didn’t have the ad spend cost that everyone else had. Number two, I just have so many friends in the industry. I never paid for a speaker for years. So we didn’t have that cost. Three, I’m in Vegas, so people don’t mind coming to Vegas. It’s freaking easy to get people here. I, you know, four, we, we just, I I I would say our team is really good at just getting deals for the venues and everything else. So we usually sign two event deals with the venue and get better costs that way. So, you know, overall, I would say now, for example, with the Caesars event, we’re gonna be, let’s just say hard cost all in like 400 grand on hard cost for 2000 people, which is a great, in my opinion, a super good deal. And like our production’s crazy, you know, like the room is sick, we got after parties, we got all this cool stuff. And then whatever I wanna spend on ads, we’ll be on top of that. But we’re gonna spend multiple six figures in ads over the next, you know, 90 days between events.
RV (42:47):
What do you spend the money on ads too? Do you just take them directly from an ad to a sales page? Like directly from an ad to a page that says, here’s the event, here’s the speakers, here’s the video.
RP (42:57):
You know? Yep. So this is where people make the s
RV (42:59):
Platinum, whatever.
RP (43:00):
Yeah. So here’s where people screw up in events is they think people are gonna self select buying a ticket. That’s not true. We sell probably 95% of our tickets over the phone. Hmm. So what happens is, in order to see the price, you have to give us your information. And so within a minute you’re getting a call and we’re gonna hit you up about the event because most people will just not buy a ticket on their own. Especially our tickets. Our tickets are priced from a thousand to $10,000. So these are not, you know, a a hundred dollars event where yeah, people will self-select for a hundred dollars event. You know, like the event that we’re gonna be doing together. That one, we’re not gonna do sales calls ’cause like there’s gonna be tickets for 27 bucks. You know, like people will self-select buying those. But overall, if it’s a higher price ticket event, you have to have a sales team.
RV (43:54):
Got it. So you drive an ad to the page, get ’em excited about the event to, in order to, you know, learn about the ticket prices, click here, request a call, and we’ll call you and figure out what’s right.
RP (44:05):
Yeah. So to give some context too, like at the end of the day, the event space and everything’s changing pretty dramatically. So is the coaching space overall I am, look, I haven’t been in this industry for a long time, but I’m fortunate enough to know the top people who have and just get their feedback about everything.
RP (44:30):
The days of just, you know, structuring these events for a pure pitch and like doing NLP and, and all this stuff. I think it works for guys like Tony Robbins and everything else. He’s been doing it for 30, 40 years. But that’s not how I’ve built my events. My events have always just been new speakers. Every event they’re given just tremendous value. And will that hurt conversion on like, at the event? Sure. Because if I had structured it in a way to like get people in the mindset of buying coaching, then yes, there we, we could potentially do better. But I look at the brand and lifetime value of it. Like Wealth Con is becoming a brand in itself where people are like, bro, like that event, that’s a sick event. Like yeah, they’re gonna sell you something. Every event’s gonna sell you something.
RP (45:20):
People are savvy enough to know that. But it’s not overtly just like fluff like people, you’re gonna go, you’re gonna know the quality of the room is really high because the tickets are expensive. You’re gonna know that the speakers are gonna give great game. ’cause You could see who they are and you know that yes, even though I’m gonna be sold something either way, I’m gonna have a great experience whether I buy or not. And so for me, what I know is, hey, you know what? Even if they don’t buy at the event, it’s all good. ’cause Guess what, back to what we talked about, you know, 20 minutes ago with trust, you just spent two full days with me. We’re gonna do something at some point. You know, I don’t need you to commit to me that event you’re gonna commit down the road.
RP (46:02):
‘Cause You can’t just stop you. It’s inevitable. That’s my point. And so I don’t need to monetize at the event itself and, and go crush it. But just to give you some rough context and numbers, you know, like I said, I think the event let’s just say we’re all in hard costs, like 400 grand. And once again, like other events, they got 400 grand on speakers. You know this Mm-Hmm. like, so it, dude, yeah, it makes 400 grand is coming to me buddy. Yeah. Rory needs 400 on his own , right? So that’s tight. Like, it, it becomes, you do have to do things different when your costs are that high. Like, okay dude, if I’m into the event for a million bucks before ads and everything, well heck, dude, I do need to structure it in a way to pitch and make sure we convert or else I’m gonna lose a crap load of money.
RP (46:51):
So my model has always been, well, how can I make sure you know, like that we do this the right way. So my my costs are really low relative to pretty much every other event. And there’s no way anyone can really replicate it because it just, it’s, it’s relationship based. So that’s that. Number two, I don’t chase shiny objects. I do ’em all in Vegas. I don’t really care. People are like, well bro, don’t people get tired of it? Like, don’t you need to switch city to city? And I’m like, yeah, if, if you’re trying to just get local people, right? So like I got friends for example, my friends run the Aspire tour and we talk all the time about events, like obvious it’s what they do. You know, their tickets are very cheap to go to their events. And let’s say 80% of their people are local.
RP (47:38):
So yes, if you’re only getting local people, you have to keep switching cities. But 80% of our audience is not even in Vegas. They fly to come to this event ’cause it’s so good. And so it’s different. Nobody else really has it. And it’s because I, I really value the experience and the value and everything else. So anyways, if my hard costs are like 400 grand to throw it it’s then just a matter of how much I wanna spend. And for us, we, and this is unheard of in the event space, but we are doing about two and a half to three x on the front end of ticket sales on ad spend. So if I go spend 200 grand, 300 grand, I’m gonna make 500 to 800 grand, you know, on ticket sales in revenue.
RV (48:26):
You’re saying in revenue.
RP (48:27):
In revenue. And so if you just start to think about that, you’re like, all right, well, you know, if I spent let’s say two 50 and I made 700, you know, now my all in cost is six 50 between ad spend and hard cost, and then I made 700 grand in ticket sales. So I’m already in the green, like going into the event.
RV (48:51):
Going into the event, right?
RP (48:53):
Which very few people ever are. And so whatever we sell at the event, it’s all gravy. And that way I’m not stressed about, man, dude, we gotta like hitting numbers. We’re we’re a million bucks in the hole going to this event, which by the way many people are. And so it, it changes the dynamic of what we can do at the event because we’re not stressed out. And that’s what’s allowed us to have longevity and build brand because of the business model, which I don’t know that’s replicatable, but the only way we’re able to really get a two and a half, three x on ticket sales is because brand, you know, we’ve, we’ve proved it at quarter after quarter that it’s a great event. And then two, just, I’m really good at sales and marketing. So like I, I know that they gotta call ’em, they gotta hit ’em up to sell that many tickets.
RV (49:41):
Yeah. So, and
RP (49:42):
We know that by the way, we know 10% of the room is gonna buy something from us at the event.
RV (49:48):
Uhhuh. Yeah. That’s awesome man. I think so why don’t we tell ’em, so let’s land the plane. This has been awesome, Ryan. Like it’s so cool just to, to hear your philosophy on podcasts and long form and time spent and everything we do at BG is request a call. Right? That’s our whole model is just like everything we do request a free call and then our team talks to ’em, right? And figures out. ’cause We, we basically have like three different programs at three different tiers. One that’s very affordable, one that’s kind of mid, and then one that’s like private clients that are extremely customized. The so we, we really believe in that. So let’s tell ’em about the event that we’re doing. Because this, this is an event that I’m doing. I’m speaking at it for free, which I never do. Mm-Hmm. , I’m doing it because it’s you and mostly because of the topic of the event. And because you have asked me to speak on something that I have never spoken on before. Mm-Hmm. publicly. Mm-Hmm. . Yep. So tell everyone about, tell everyone about this.
RP (50:53):
Yeah. So, you know, wealth Con is our secular event and, you know, we run it every 90 days. It’s great. It’s a business event. One aspect that we included in Wealth Con was we started doing this two events ago, was a full on worship service. And so on the last day at nine o’clock, I freaking, we rock out and it, it’s optional. I tell people, I’m like, Hey, we’re gonna do this worship service. A pastor’s gonna come speak if you don’t wanna participate, come at 10 30. But if you do come at nine and 80% of the room comes at nine just to see what it’s all about. And so it’s been crazy seeing the feedback from that. You know, I did an altar call at the last one, and we literally had 400 people come up on the altar call. I’m like, Hey, if you wanna give your life to Jesus, or you want prayer, you wanna rededicate your life, come up to the stage in the side.
RP (51:46):
Half the room did it. Like we could, we, we had to like, delay the event for 30 minutes, praying for all these people. It was nuts. And so, anyways I’ve seen the change in that. And you know, I mentioned like the, the two things that God, I feel like audibly spoke to me first was real estate back in 2015. The second was social media back in 2020. The third is this movement with Wealthy Kingdom. And so to give two minute context of this, ’cause I know we’re coming up on time. I’ve been holding Bible studies in my office, in my home for eight years straight. And it’s just something I’ve been doing for a long time that has really helped me, helped people around me and everything else. And back last year, I was like, man, we need to bring this to the masses.
RP (52:34):
I’ve had enough people now ask me where they can find this. And it doesn’t exist. Like, churches just don’t have these bible studies or groups for entrepreneurs. And I was like, I’m gonna change that. So we start Wealthy Kingdom with the whole goal of getting people into local Bible studies led by entrepreneurs and business people. And so last year we launched 50 bible studies nationwide. This year I think we can launch hundreds and every week you just meet up. We got men’s groups, women’s groups and we all follow the same curriculum, you know, so we create a curriculum. So it’s super easy to lead. You don’t have to be a theologian. You don’t have to be an apologist. You just gotta be willing to show up as you are and lead the group. Now with that, you know, we finally got nonprofit status last month.
RP (53:27):
And so I’m like, oh, we’re at nonprofit now. It’s go time, baby. We’re about to go crazy with this. And you know, part of it is I already know how effective events are for life change and getting people bought in. So I’m like, all right, so we’re gonna start holding events for Wealthy Kingdom. And, you know, the mission of the event, well, the goal of the event is obviously life change at the event, but you know, from there, funnel them into local Bible studies nationwide. And once they get into these local Bible studies, they’re gonna have friendships, relationships, they’re gonna have spiritual growth. And then the third level from that is, all right, great, now let’s get them serving. Okay, so how do we get them serving? Well, one way is let’s get ’em into their local church now. ’cause So many people are not gonna step foot in the local church the way it is today, but they would show up to a Bible study at an office, right?
RP (54:18):
Especially your coworkers and everyone are there. Like, that’s much easier to step into than a Sunday service where you’ll never talk to anyone, right? You’ll show up and then you’ll usually leave. That’s kind of how it goes in America today. So if I can get them in a more small environment, I know that’s where life change happens. ’cause I’ve just seen it personally in the last eight years. And then they will funnel into the local church. They will start giving, they will start tithing, they will start going on mission trips. You know, they will start serving in their local community and different charities and other things. Like all that will happen. But for me, it all starts with that top funnel of like awareness and where does awareness come from. I mean, events, groups, all that. Then we get ’em into Bible studies, then we get ’em into serving Mm-Hmm.
RP (55:03):
So that’s our mission at Wealthy Kingdom. And with this event, this is gonna be our first event. You know, I’m hoping for just like all the other events, we throw a thousand plus people. It’s called the Kingdom Summit. The website’s not up, but it might be by up, by the time that this is released, you can go to kingdom revivals.com. So all of our events are gonna be there. I’m, I’m basically gonna restart the Billy Graham Crusades and go full force at this. And with that, you know, Rory’s gonna be speaking with everything he did with his Eternal Life podcast and everything, which by the way, you asked me like, did I listen to the whole thing? I did listen to the whole thing. It was like 15 hours. You listened to all 15 episodes of the Eternal Life podcast.
RP (55:49):
I did. I listened to all of them. Wow. So they were great, by the way. I think the way that you laid it out. I also think that the references you gave, you know, and I know you pulled a lot from Case For Christ from Randy Alcorn a lot of great sources. Like I’d never read Randy’s book. So I’m actually now listening to Randy’s book too. So it’s led me to other things as well. But you know, you’re gonna be speaking ed Millet is also gonna be speaking for free, which he never does either. Like, you know, once again, it goes back to a business model that can’t really be copied. It’s like, dude, when people resonate with the mission, they want to come out and support. So like Ed’s gonna come out and support. Tim Ross is coming out to support rulan, who’s a big YouTuber’s coming out. Girls Gone Bible are coming out. My friend Jordan Feliz, huge Christian singer is gonna be doing a full set.
RV (56:42):
Oh yeah. I love him.
RP (56:44):
Yep. So he lives in Nashville too. Uhhuh . And so he’s gonna close it out with a massive concert and we’re gonna have, you know, worship throughout the day too. So it’s gonna be just a one day jam packed event. Unlike Wealth Con where the ticket’s a thousand bucks, you’re gonna be able to get a ticket for 27 bucks. So there’s no reason you can’t come. And dude, I’m just excited for it. I’m also slightly, and look, this is from a guy who’s like really good at the event game. Like I know the experience is gonna be sick. That part doesn’t concern me. You know, my only concern is like how much money I’m gonna lose, like throwing the event because this one, I will lose money. Like, because at 27 bucks, just the math doesn’t add up. You know, it’s gonna cost a lot to go and logistically do all this stuff. And I don’t know how much I’m gonna have to spend to market this event, but I know that God’s gonna supernaturally work it out. And so I don’t know how we’re gonna go sell thousand, 2000 tickets. You know, but it’s gonna happen and the event’s gonna have a ton of life change and it’s gonna be epic.
RV (57:49):
Yeah, man, I love it. I really love it. So I, I am going to be speaking on Eternal Life. The Eternal Life podcast, which if y’all don’t know, that was where I basically walked through seven questions every intelligent skeptic should ask about Jesus of Nazareth. And I started a separate podcast to house all that content, which is 15 episodes, which Ryan has made his way through. And so I’ll be crafting a one of a kind, never before, first time ever, a keynote version of that just for this event. ’cause I’m, I’m so excited about it. And I believe in Ryan and, and, and I think the, the, it’s not replicatable, but kind of it is. Mm-Hmm. because relationships, the strategy of relationships is replicatable.
RP (58:34):
Yeah. True.
RV (58:35):
If, if people build relationships and they add value to people who, whoever’s next to them and whoever is in their life and whoever they have access to, and they overdeliver to the people in front of ’em, they’ll build brand, they’ll build relationships. And then that opens up different opportunities and, and, and and different things. So, you know, we’ll, we’ll link to that, Ryan. So kingdom revivals.com is the place to go look for that particular event, which is this summer, and then yeah, A 31st. Where else do you want people to point? Where do you, where else do you wanna point people to Ryan to like, learn more about you and what you’re up to?
RP (59:11):
Yeah, just follow me on social media, Ryan Pineda. I mean, we got so many things going on that , I, I can’t even dive into all the businesses, man. So it’s, yeah, just follow me on social and we’ll, we’ll help you out one way or another.
RV (59:24):
It’s really cool. Well, we are, we’re praying for your event and grateful for your knowledge and your wisdom, man. Love what you’re up to. Thanks for sharing, sharing some of the, the insider kind of philosophies and strategies. Really, really cool man. So we’re pulling for you, praying for you. And I’ll see you in a, I’ll see you in a couple months. Yep.
RP (59:43):
Thanks for having me, man.

Ep 479: 3 Tips for Awkward-less Networking | April Garcia Episode Recap

RV (00:00):
You know how when you go to events and they give you a name tag and you always feel awkward meeting new people, I’m gonna share with you three simple steps in three different environments to make it easy for you to meet new people so that you can grow your business. All right? So first of all, let’s talk about events. What do you do at events? Well, here’s what you don’t do. I’m not a fan of walking up and saying, hi, I’m Rory, nice to meet you. Mm. Like, I always feel weird, and, and it’s not wrong to do that. It’s not bad to do it, but it just feels very abrupt and sharp. So lemme give you the three part formula that works really at any event or any in-person environment, anywhere you go, it’s compliment questions and then free compliment question and free. So here’s how it starts.
RV (00:53):
Start with a compliment. Don’t walk up and say, hi, my name is, walk up and compliment somebody on something. Hey, I love your smile. I love your hair, I love your shoes, I love your outfit. And if you can’t find something honest to compliment them on, then what you should do is comment on the environment, right? Rather than introduce yourself to the person, comment on the environment. So you would say like, man, it’s freezing in here. Or you know, do you have any idea what that food is? The the point is to break the ice of the conversation by not having such direct eye contact and such an, an abrupt opening to the relationship. So either compliment somebody on something genuinely, or comment on the environment. The second thing that you should do to meet new people is you should ask questions. This is the easiest secret tip of building relationships with new people.
RV (01:50):
And it takes all the pressure off of you when you feel like you have to meet people. Like you have to be somebody, you have to share something magnificent, or you have to like, show up and impress people. That’s gonna put pressure on you. And it’s also not the way to actually build relationships quickly. The way to build relationships quickly is to ask questions. Just simply ask questions. So where are you from? How did you find out about this? Have you been to this event before? Do you know? Who do you know here? Did you come with somebody? How did you hear about this? And then from that question, go to the next question to the next question to the next question. The key to meeting people is to not be so focused on yourself, but just be focused on asking great questions. Then how does this turn into creating new business for you? Well, that’s step three, which is offer something for free. Remember the formula, compliment questions, and free. That means offer something for free. Offer them free help, free advice, a free call. Offer them to, to connect
RV (02:58):
Them to somebody for free. A vendor, perhaps a friend of yours that might be useful for them, or a contact that you have. Or send them an article or send them a video or, or send them send them something, right? Give them something valuable that is free and it might just be free time with you, a free assessment, something like that. So we wanna be thinking about whenever you transition from a meeting somebody for the first time, usually you’re asking them questions. A lot of times that will show up as them asking you questions back. But when you transition into your business, think about what can you give them for free. That’s the, that’s the most gradual, safe, easy, smooth way to transition into talking about your business. And this works in person at events, it can work on an airplane, right? If you’re sitting next to someone on an airplane, you might feel awkward saying, hi, my name is, and, and immediately breaking the physical barrier of shaking hands, right?
RV (03:59):
Not everybody is prepared initially to, to make physical contact. They’re also not prepared to make eye contact. So if you instead compliment them and say, Hey, I love your shoes. Or hey, I love that show. If they’re, if they’re, if they’re, if they’re watching something on their iPad or comment on the situation, right? Like, comment on the airline, comment on how small the plane is, comment on the tray, comment on the flight attendant, comment on the environment as a way of breaking the ice. Then ask questions, then offer something for free that will work in any sort of in-person environment. The second place that you can really meet people, and you can follow this same three part process, is online on social media. So how do you build a relationship with somebody digitally in the interwebs on social media? Same exact formula, compliment question, and offer something for free.
RV (05:04):
So you show up and you leave a genuine compliment. Now it’s, if you just go to somebody’s profile and you comment on their post and you say, great post, they’re not gonna notice that. But if you write a genuine compli compliment as a comment on one of their posts, they’re gonna see it. I’m telling you, we work with some of the fam most famous personal brands in the world. These people have millions of followers. When you write genuine compliments, they see them. Here’s a secret tip. Realize nobody ever gets tired of hearing how awesome they are. Nobody, doesn’t matter how rich, how famous, how successful. You might think, oh my gosh, everyone tells ’em this. I’m telling you, there’s not a person in the world. Whoever gets sick of having other people tell them how
RV (05:56):
Awesome they are. So don’t do this in a fake way. Do it in a genuine way. Tell them what it is about them that you love. Tell them why you follow that person. Tell them what was awesome in the video or in the thing they just shared. And by the way, the other way to compliment people online is to share their content, right? You should retweet them. Or what do we call a retweet now for X? I don’t know. Rex them. I, I actually don’t know. But you can share their post, you can send it to a friend. And they’ll often see that as well. But leave a genuine compliment. Then if and when they respond to you, ask them a question. And this is a mistake that people make, is if they ever get a response from the person, they often immediately launch into their pitch of like, Hey, can, can I come on your podcast?
RV (06:52):
Or can I, can we go to lunch? Or can you know? They asking them for something? Don’t do that. Just ask them questions about something going on in their life. The key is to ask questions and not for those questions to be about something that they can do for you. And then the third thing is, if the opportunity presents itself, offer something for free. Now, I wanna say this, in the online world, where you wanna build relationships is not in the comments. You wanna do it in the dms. The, the goal of content is to create comments. The goal of comments is to create dms. And then once you have dms, then you can build offline relationships and then you can get stuff done. So you don’t wanna do this back and forth in comments. You wanna tell ’em, Hey you could leave a compliment publicly on their post.
RV (07:41):
And then if they respond, you can say, Hey, I just dmd you a question. And then move them into the dms. Ask them questions, go back and forth. And if the opportunity presents itself for some way for you to potentially, possibly, maybe might do business with them, do it in a way of offering them something for free. Give them free value. Don’t try to sell ’em something. Don’t try to pitch them on. You. Offer something for free. If you do that, then you have a chance of building the relationship. Now, the third place that you can meet people is through referrals. Referrals, referrals, referrals. I promise you that referrals from humans to other humans is the fastest way to build your business and to build relationships. And on this one, I’m just gonna give you one really quick line. One simple technique and tactic that works for asking with for referrals. And it all comes down to how you tee it up. The reason why most people are terrible at asking for referrals is because they think that if they ask for referrals, they’re going to come across somehow as needy or annoying or unsuccessful
RV (08:54):
Or weak. But in reality, you should be none of those things. People love to do business with friends. We all understand that we all prefer to do business by way of referral. So when you ask for referrals, I want you to use that line or to use this line that I’m gonna give you. And here’s the transition as you say, Hey, you may not realize this, but I really only prefer to do business with friends or friends of friends. And because of that, I was wondering if you might be open-minded to introducing me to, and then you explain the kind of people that you’re trying to meet. But that key transitional phrase is, is where the magic is. You may not realize this, but I really prefer to do business with friends or friends of friends. And so I was wondering if you might be open-minded to introducing me to people who are, and then you describe the type of people that you’re looking for.
RV (09:53):
If you can get past that part, if you can get past that awkwardness that, that opening moment, then there’s a good chance that your friends, your family, your active clients, your past clients will introduce you to people. They will refer you to people when you simply explain that’s how you prefer to do business. So there you have three different environments, live events, social media, and referrals. If you’re meeting new people for the first time, remember compliments questions and offer things for free. And if you’re asking for referrals, just explain that you prefer to do business with friends or friends of friends. Hey, if this video is valuable for you, make sure to hit the subscribe button and share this with somebody who you know in your life that needs some tips on meeting more people.

Ep 471: 4 Techniques to Make Your Content Go Viral

RV (00:04):
So I’m gonna share something awesome with you today. I’m gonna share with you four techniques to make your content go more viral. And the reason I’m sharing this is because I’ve spent a lot of time learning about this in the last several months. And if you’re new to this podcast or if you’re new to following me, you won’t know any different. But if you’ve been here for a while, you know that especially if you’re one of our brand builders group members, you’ll know that we don’t put a lot of stock into things like social media or a lot of time upfront into social media. And the reason why is because we know that building a real business is much more profitable. Focusing on systems, developing people, creating use, useful content, having automation and you know, follow up and, and these kinds of things that aren’t as sexy that you don’t hear about as much in the world today.
RV (01:00):
But you know, generating referrals speaking on stages, those are the things that actually are gonna generate meaningful or significant income in your pocket quickly. But there is this vanity of going viral that everybody is chasing. And you know, then they’re surprised when they don’t actually make much money from it. And so we just don’t focus on social media as much, right? Early on. But if you’ve, if you’re one of our members, you know that in our brand builder journey, we, we talk about doing the, there’s a, there’s a, people sometimes do the right things, but in the wrong order, right? They do the right thing at the wrong time. And the sequence matters a lot, particularly if you wanna scale a really significant multi seven or eight figure business. Now, that all said, we hit eight figures last year as a company, and we have spent five years perfecting our craft and creating our curriculum and building our systems and training our people, and doing all of those things.
RV (02:03):
And so what we have done is we are now set up to scale. We are set up to really rapidly grow. And so now all we have to do is go out and grow our audience. And so we are now turning our focus and our attention to learning some of these things that are more about scaling your audience. Because we’ve scaled our people, we’ve scaled our offerings, we’ve scaled our systems, we’ve scaled our team, we’ve scaled our technology, and so now we’re really ready to go out and scale our audience. And so that’s what I’m gonna share with you a little bit about what I’ve been learning in that front. And, and also to kind of say like, if you’ve been following me for a while watch out. Here we come, right? Watch how, watch how fast we’re gonna start to grow on social media and things.
RV (02:49):
And that’s because we can afford to do things now. We can afford to hire the team. We can afford to, to, to buy traffic if we need to, to, we can afford to produce high quality content. We can afford to invest in education to grow our audience because we have a backend business that can pay for it, right? If you know anything about how we teach paid traffic, which we don’t really talk much about here on the podcast, that’s really for members only. But we talk about how the, the person who wins the click is whoever can afford the most to pay for the click. And so the key is to not actually spend so much time just trying to build the audience or dropping a bunch of money into ads, is to build something on the backend that is very profitable so that you can afford to go buy traffic so that you can afford to go buy awareness.
RV (03:37):
And that’s basically what we spent five years doing. That said, I know that many of you’ll be excited to be learning about, you know, some of the strategies and techniques that we are learning to go viral. And I’m gonna share with you four of them today that are really important. That will make a huge difference for any of you, regardless of, of whether or not you have that backend system, and you have that, that clear personal brand, and you have that uniqueness and, and you really are building things the right way. Or if, you know, you’re just trying to get more views on your videos, and that’s what you, you, you know, or your, or your podcast or whatever your YouTube. And so either way this is, this is gonna be great. All right? So let me walk you through these. So the first one is content selection secrets.
RV (04:22):
Content selection secrets. A huge part of going viral is knowing what type of content is going to go viral. What kind of topics are going viral? What are, in other words, what are people already interested in that they are naturally sharing, that they are likely to share? And you might say, well, okay, but how do I know what the whole world is interested in? How do I know what people are likely to share? And that is the great question. And the answer is actually much simpler than you might realize. It is to watch what other content is going viral and to recreate your version of that same content. When we teach media strategy we referenced, you know, a term that David Meerman Scott created years ago called Newsjacking. And he said, if you wanna get featured in the news, what you do is you watch what is breaking news, and then you produce content on that same story, but with your slant, your expertise, your angle on that topic, because it will get picked up by the media that’s breaking news.
RV (05:32):
Well, this sort of viral drafting as I sometimes I think of it as like drafting is you’re, you are figuring out which topics are already going viral, and then you’re gonna draft off of those. So you’re not gonna copy them. You’re not going to, like, you’re not gonna just take a, a viral video and post it on your feed. That’s actually against many of the, the terms of many of these social media outlets, although people do it all the time. What, what I’m gonna say is watch for, for topics that are going viral in your niche and then create your version of it. So how do you do that? Well, there’s some simple ways. One is look at what’s showing up in your explore page. Look what is showing up in, in the trending section in YouTube, you can simply go look at a video and look at how many views a video has compared to how many subscribers the channel has.
RV (06:30):
If it has way more views than there are subscribers in the channel, you know, that piece of content is performing very well. There’s also lots of other third party tools that you can use to do this research for you. We talk about those in our membership program. But, but, but you can watch on what’s recommended for you. Like all of these platforms recommend content and push content. You know, in YouTube there’s like a whole panel down the side that will say, you know, you know, recommended next or, or watch this next. Those are all videos that are being recommended because they’re holding people’s attention, and that’s what the, the platform wants. And so those videos are performing well, and so they’re recommending those to more people, which, so you have to just pay attention. You have to like open your eyes. You know, when we say the next level of thinking or the next level of results requires the next level of thinking, it’s like your eyes have to be opened to a, a new way of viewing the world.
RV (07:23):
And, and this is happening all around you, and you’re probably just not paying attention to it. You’re not seeing it. So you need to look for that. And then you look for the topics that lend themselves to your expertise, to your niche, to your industry, or that you have something to say and you kind of recreate it in your own style, in your own voice. That is how you create viral content is, is basically recreating your own version of content that has already been proven to go viral by other people, right? So that’s content selection. And then that’s the first technique. Now, each of the next three techniques are all gonna be about hooks, okay? We’re gonna talk about visual hooks, text hooks, and audio hooks. In order to teach you each of those, you need to understand what a hook is. And this has been one of the most frustrating parts of my journey as it relates to kind of organic marketing and social media marketing is so many people say, you gotta have a hook.
RV (08:28):
You gotta start with a hook. You need a great hook. That’s a great hook. But nobody can define what in the freaking heck an actual hook is. Like, what does that mean? What is a hook? Like, I know the concept is that it hooks people attention, it hooks people’s attention, but how, like, what’s the formula for creating a hook? And I now, after studying this, you know, for a couple years, I think I found the answer. And I think it is insanely simple. And I think even the people who teach it, they can’t articulate what it is. They know what it is, and they’re able to replicate it, and that’s why they grow. But they actually can’t articulate it in a way that they could teach it to somebody else. And that’s what’s been so frustrating is, is, is figuring out how, what is, what is a hook?
RV (09:20):
What does that mean? What is a hook? And when I was in Toastmasters, when I started my professional speaking career, Toastmasters used to have this formula for a speech, okay? Not for videos, but for speech. And they said, and its formula’s been around for, you know, probably centuries, but at least decades. And they said, the formula for a great speech is tell ’em what you’re gonna tell ’em, tell them, and then tell ’em what you told ’em. Tell ’em what you’re gonna tell ’em, tell ’em, and then tell ’em what you told them. And that’s, that’s what the formula was for a great speech. What I’m realizing now is that what a hook is, is that first part. Tell ’em what you’re gonna tell them. So many people will start a video by just saying like, you know, here’s something I was thinking about the other day.
RV (10:08):
Well, that’s a random thought. Instead, what you wanna do is make the first words out of your mouth on the video telling the people exactly what you’re about to teach them, right? So you don’t wanna pontificate and flounder and mess around. You wanna say, here’s four ways to make your content go viral. And then it’s like, okay, one, I’m gonna teach you 1, 2, 3, 4. But the opening line should be, here’s four techniques that will help you go viral, right? I’m telling you what I’m about to tell you, or I’m telling you what I’m about to teach you. That’s the hook, right? I had my first con, my first social media content. I mean, my Ted Talk has gone viral and I studied TED Talks, right? So that, that’s gone viral. But in terms of like just creating organic content, I finally had a, a, a a, a social media piece go viral.
RV (11:03):
And it was when you, you know, I told the, the story of how someone stole $40,000 from me and for me and aj, and that was the opening line. I, I said, someone just stole $40,000 from me, and I want to tell you what they did. So it doesn’t happen to you, right? I’m telling them what I’m about to tell them, or I’m telling them what I’m about to teach them. I promise you, if you, if you focus on making the opening three to five seconds of your content and be very clear of just telling them what you’re about to teach them, your content is gonna perform exponentially better, exponentially better. So that’s the big idea. Now, let me teach you, you know, I promise you four techniques to make you go viral. So all three of these next techniques are related to hooks, but there’s three different type of hooks I want you to focus on.
RV (11:55):
Visual hooks, text hooks, and audio hooks. So a visual hook is when you hold something or you show something visual like you could be holding a prop or you could be, you could be doing anything that is different than just a talking head. It could be where you are. The, the where you’re behind. It could be something you’re wearing. It could be something you’re holding, but it is, it is something like visual that the eye can see to go, oh, this piece of content is going to explain this thing. Why am I standing here? Or why am I holding this? Or why am I doing x? That’s a visual hook. The visual hook is a signal that I’m about to tell you something related to that visual element, and that serves as a hook. So that’s visual hooks. Then you wanna use text hooks.
RV (12:53):
Text hooks are actually the easiest is to make sure the onscreen texts, like the, the, the, not what you say, but, but what you, what they see, that text that they see visually says what you’re about to teach them. So if this were a video, it would say four techniques to make you go, make your content go viral. And it would be titled that, and the text would be on the screen. It would also be the first line of your caption. And then the third type of hook is an audio hook. An audio hook is what you actually say, assuming it’s a video or a podcast where there is a spoken word element as you say. You know what I’m gonna share with you four ideas to make your content go more viral. So they’re seeing a visual element, they’re reading a text, a description, and they’re hearing an auditory description, all of which are three different types of hooks, A visual hook, a text hook, and an audio hook, right?
RV (13:55):
Lemme say that again. You’re giving them, they’re, they’re, they’re seeing a visual element, they’re reading a text description, and they’re hearing an auditory explanation. So they’re seeing a visual hook, they’re reading a text hook, and they’re hearing an auditory hook. I promise you, if you start your content with those three elements, and especially if you’ve, you’ve made a content selection, a strategic content selection, your content will go more viral. So there you have it, four techniques that will make your content go viral. If you’ve enjoyed this episode, please make sure you leave a review for me on iTunes or wherever you listen to the show, and share this episode with someone who you think will benefit from it. That’s how you can pay us back and really help us. We, it’s what keeps this podcast going. So thanks for being here. We’ll catch you next time on the Influential Personal Brand Podcast.

Ep 467: 8 Best Ways to Grow Your Podcast | Hala Taha Episode Recap

RV (00:09):
I wanna share with you my eight favorite techniques for growing your podcast. This is coming off my interview from Hala Taha, my friend talking about some of the technical sides and some of the, the detailed sort of tactical things that you can do to grow your podcast. And if you didn’t listen to the interview that her and I did, you have to go listen to this. Like, the interview blew my mind. There was so much about the world of podcasting that I did not even know. So what I’m gonna share with you are sort of like the eight conceptual things that have grown our podcast, right? And this podcast is the second time that we’ve grown a podcast to over a million downloads. And we only started this one a few years ago. So here we go. Let’s dive in real quick.
RV (00:55):
I’m just gonna give them to you the eight, my eight favorite tips for building a great podcast. So number one is appear on other podcasts as a guest. That is for sure. The fastest way to grow your podcast is to appear as a guest on other people’s shows. I remember interviewing Jordan Harbinger on this podcast. We actually talked about this. He started a show many years ago called The Art of Charm, grew it to millions and millions of downloads left the show or lost the show, and then started his own show, the Jordan Harbinger Show. And he rebuilt the whole thing like in a matter of a year. And the way he did it was by appearing on other people’s shows, like, so that is the fastest way. And part of that, right, is because people want to stay in the platform they’re already in.
RV (01:43):
Like, it’s harder to move somebody who’s like an Instagram follower to follow you on a podcast or a YouTube subscriber to like follow you on Facebook. People like to stay in the format that they are in. Now, you wanna try to move everyone, obviously, to your email list. But anyways, moving people from one podcast to another is much easier than moving somebody from some other platform to your podcast. So guest on other people’s show, which leads to both number two and three in my list, which are strategies for how to achieve, number one, to get book on number on other people’s shows. So number two, strategy is to help book all of your guests from your show onto other people’s shows. Yes, that that’s, I’m, I said that correctly, that one of the best ways for you to grow your podcast is for you to spend time and energy helping all of your guests who come on your show to get booked on other shows. Now, at first you might go, why? Like, how does, how does that work? Like how does that make sense? How does it grow my show? The reason it grows your show is because it causes you to network naturally with other podcasters,
RV (02:59):
And that forces you to build relationships with other podcasters, and you add value and you build relationships with all of your guests. So helping your podcast guests get booked on other shows is one of the fastest ways that you can build a relationship with somebody. And so what happens is they, you become friends, and so they start referring other guests to be on your show. And they start fu referring you to be on other shows, because when they go on shows, the the shows they’re off and on will ask ’em and they’ll say, Hey, who, who, who should have me on? Who, who show should I be on? And who should I have on this show? Which leads me to number three which is asking, asking every time you’re on a podcast as a guest, say, are there any other podcasts that you think I would be a good fit for?
RV (03:51):
That’s what you want to ask every time that you’re a guest. And similarly, when you’re the interviewer and you interview someone on your show, you should always ask them, who else do you know that would be a great fit for this show? Right? You gotta make the ask. You gotta make the ask. So that’s really, really key. Now, number four, here’s the secret to getting big guests. Okay? The secret to getting big guests is to offer them help in their time of need. Okay? So on any given day, a a an invite for a celebrity to come on a podcast is sort of an annoying, disruptive thing that they have to say no to or turn down, or they say yes, and it kind of throws ’em off the rhythm, right? Some, some, for a lot of high profile people, that’s, that’s how it occurs.
RV (04:44):
It’s like, I, I I’m not in podcast mode, so you don’t really wanna ask for that if you don’t already have a relationship or a warm referral or introduction to them. So what you wanna do is wait for their time of need, right? And you go, ah, they just had a book launch come out, or they just had a new TV show come out, or they just, they just, you know, they’re doing something right and you’re keeping an eye on the, the guest that you really want. I call this the Gretchen Rubin story because this is how Gretchen Rubin and I genuinely became friends. Like I for years admired her and thought she was so great and, and, you know, both academic and, you know, and also like in the personal development world and just really sweet and a fantastic writer. And, and so, you know, I waited until she had a book coming out, which is the easiest time to do it, right?
RV (05:29):
Everybody wants to go on shows when they have their book coming out. So I almost always wait until they have a book coming out, and that’s when I’ll ask them, because that’s when they’re most likely to say yes. In fact, here’s a little advanced ninja tip from one of our brand builders, group strategists. This is Matt LaBree. So Matt, this is a shout out to you brother. What he does for his show is he actually looks on Amazon at all the books that are scheduled for publication in like the next three months. And he, that’s how he picks his guest to come on his show. So is so smart. He’s getting them even before their new book comes out, because that’s when they’re doing all of their pre-launch prep. And he’ll make a commitment to say, Hey, let me interview you before your launch and I will help you during your book launch.
RV (06:15):
I’ll publish this episode on your launch. Relatedly, the other thing you wanna do with big guests is, is promise them that you’ll do the full court press on promotion. Tell ’em, you know, I’ll email my whole list. I’ll, I’ll post multiple times on social, like, I’ll tell everybody about you. And that’s a big deal because even if there’s a really big podcast that might not perform as well for someone as a small podcast where the host is super enthusiastic about the guest and willing to like, promote heavily the guest being on their show. So that’s the key to getting big guests, is help them in their time of need and, and promise to do a full court promotional, pro press for them, and then, and then do it. Relatedly number five. So here is another simple step any podcaster can do that we so often overlook.
RV (07:11):
Email your list every time you publish a new podcast. Email your list and tell them you have a new podcast. And if you think that’s emailing them too often, then I would say, well, then your podcast must not be that good, right? Nobody gets annoyed at like having too much like valuable information that’s hyper relevant to them being sent to them. So, and podcasts take a lot of work to, to produce and schedule the time and prepare for the interviews and find the guests and, you know, record and edit and blah, blah, blah. So what I want you to do is make sure that you don’t overlook the step of emailing and telling your people like, Hey, we have a new show, a new episode that just went live. You gotta check it out. And if you’re publishing your podcast on YouTube, it’s especially important that you, you email and you push traffic to your YouTube video the moment it goes live, like the moment it’s published, because part of the YouTube algorithm is a affected by how quickly a video is getting views.
RV (08:17):
You can, you can force that by driving social and you, you know, your, your email and your social list directly to YouTube to sort of spike the algorithm. So make sure you’re doing that. Number six, make it easy for your guests to promote their appearance. Make it easy for your guests to promote their appearance. How do you do that? Basically by giving them beautiful assets that make them look like the star from when they were on your show. So think about this for a second. Everybody has to feed the social media beast, right? Like anyone who is, you know, a con, a mission-driven messenger of any type and is like, very few people love being on social media every day. So it’s a chore that we all have to do, is we have to put out relevant content on social. So if you can create an asset that’s not about you so much, and not about your show, like take a back seat and highlight your guests.
RV (09:22):
Make your guest the star of the post, draw attention to your guest and give them assets that they can promote. Or even if they won’t promote ’em, hopefully you can, you can post it and you can tag them. And a lot of times they’ll share your post from their post post. We also related to this, we email our guests every time the show goes live. That’s an important step here, is just alerting them that, hey, like, we prerecorded this show two weeks ago, or two months ago, it’s going, it just went live. And we let ’em know like, Hey please review first of all the page, make sure that we didn’t spell anything wrong. You know, make sure that it looks the way you want it to. If there’s any changes, let us know. And also, here’s an asset if you, if it’s valuable to you, this is one of the highlights from the interview where we thought you really looked like a star.
RV (10:16):
We, we’ve gone ahead and edited it for you and put it together. But it has to look more like their branding than your branding. No one’s gonna share something that looks like your logo and your show and all that. You gotta take a backseat if you want them to share it, right? You can share it. You make your own assets that are more about your branding and you’re featuring them to your audience. But if you want your guests to share it, you, the asset needs to look more like them and less like you. So give your, give your guests assets to help them promote, make it easy for them to promote. Number seven, consistency. Consistency, consistency, consistency, right? I, I could not put this list together and not talk about the importance of just being consistent. Almost every single podcast does not have linear growth.
RV (11:07):
It has exponential growth. It’s it’s the hockey stick curve. It starts slow, slow, slow. And I would say you should consider publishing your podcast for a year and not even look at the stats, because that’s how long it takes to even start to begin to get traction. But like, if you’ve been publishing for six months and you look at your stats, you’re probably gonna be depressed and deflated. But if you keep going for like another year and 18 months in, it’s gonna start to catch flight. And by two years it’s gonna be become significant after two and a half or three years. If you’re doing all of these things, your podcast is gonna be a full out asset that produces leads and credibility and trust for you for the rest of your life. It’s gonna be the greatest door opener you have for networking to high profile relationships, to book deals, to speaking engagements to clients to just attracting friends, to just making an impact in the world around the world globally. If you just stick with it, A huge part of the podcast game is just not giving up. I mean, that’s a huge part of the personal brand game in general is just not giving up. So, consistency. Consistency. And then number eight, and this is my favorite. So I, I saved this for last, although I have a bonus tip for you. Number eight is move the audience emotionally.
RV (12:41):
Move the audience emotionally. A podcast is intimate, you’re talking right in people’s ears, right there. Your voice is in their head. And so you wanna become a master of emotions. You wanna become a master at using your voice, telling stories, delivering frameworks, pillar points, all things that we teach you. For those of you that are members, brand builders group inside of captivating content, right? Where we talk about the advanced storytelling mechanics, we talk about the six pillar point formulas. We talk about the 17 thought leadership frameworks. We talk about the, the, the exercise and engagement list, all all of these things, behavior drivers, all of these techniques for crafting amazing content and delivering it. You, you wanna apply that to your podcast. Your podcast is stage time. And what makes a great presenter is giving the audience an emotional experience. One where they’re inspired, right?
RV (13:39):
They’re moved, they’re proud, they’re, they’re challenged. They’re saddened, they’re they’re scared, they’re frightened you know, they’re provoked. Like move the audience emotionally. The, the use your words and, and your stories and your guest stories. And whenever there is an a chance to have an emotional moment, zoom in on that moment. Don’t skip over the emotional parts. People want to be moved emotionally. That creates a visceral bond, visceral attraction. And one of, one of my, one of my favorite quotes from one of our brand builders group clients, so this is not a Rory Vaden quote I did help them come up with this in one of our strategy sessions, but this is, this is their quote, it’s from the attention ears from Hillary Billings is she says, remember when people get emotional, they get promotional. When people get emotional, they get promotional.
RV (14:32):
That’s from Hillary Billings, from attention ears and Marshall, they that, that’s, you know, one of their pillar points. That is so good and so true. When people get emotional, they get promotional. So you gotta move your audience emotionally. And then number nine, bonus tip for you in terms of how to build a great podcast is interview your top prospects. Interview your top prospects. Even if your podcast never grows, even if it never becomes an amazing networking opportunity, even if it never becomes like a super loyal audience of like lots of listeners, which it will, if you do, it will over time consistently, it’s still the most amazing prospecting tool, I promise you. Take it from someone who went door to door for five years, spent two years calling over the phones to, to enterprises, and spent like five years walking in office parks and cold calling.
RV (15:25):
No cold call. Like if you’re cold calling somebody on the phone in their office knocking on their door, like 99% of the people are gonna slam the door on you. But when you show up in someone’s inbox and you say, Hey, I’m the host of this podcast. I would, I’ve been following your company, I think you’re so brilliant and I’d love to share your insights with the world. Would you be open to an interview with me? Like, who says no to that? Like nobody. So now all of a sudden you get to learn from them and you get to build a relationship by giving to them first, celebrating them, promoting them, adding value to them first. And now after the podcast is over and you’ve built rapport, now you can have an actual conversation as humans and maybe some that can go somewhere. So podcasting is the most magnificent Trojan horse prospecting strategy, I’ll call it the Trojan horse prospecting strategy of all time.
RV (16:22):
So it blows my mind that more business development people are not using this tactic, but it’s also, it’s also what I can use to prospect other podcasts to be on, right? Like, if there’s a podcast I want to be on, I don’t reach out to them and say, Hey, will you have me on the show? I reach out to them and say, Hey, can I have you on my show? Can I promote you? Can I highlight you? Can I celebrate you? Can I tell the whole world how brilliant you are? And let me do that first, and then maybe there’s a chance that we’ll develop a relationship from there. So there you have it. Nine of my, my favorite tips on how to build a great podcast. I promise if you do those, it will work over time. I promise it can’t not work. So I want you to share this episode with someone you know, who either should start a podcast or who has a podcast, share this with them so that they have this checklist to make sure that they’re doing it for themselves. And in the meantime, keep coming back. We’re always looking to give you the best of the best that we can to help you build and monetize your personal brand. And I hope that we get a chance to work with you as one of our mission driven, mission-driven messengers, who will one time become one of the members of our community. But until then, keep coming back. Stay tuned. We’re so grateful for you. See you next time.

Ep 466: Secrets of Growing Your Podcast with Hala Taha

RV (00:02):
I have to tell you that whenever I meet someone who is crushing social media, I’m always like, how do you do that? What is working? Dah, dah, dah, duh. Like, I’ve never, it’s one of the things, ironically of building a personal brand that like I’ve never been that good at naturally. We’re probably more well known for, for making a lot of money from a few, from having very few followers than we are from having lots of followers and reaching lots of people. And I was introduced to the guest, you’re about to meet Hala Taha from a couple really good friends that I I really admire. And I’ve heard several people say so many great things about her. I’ve gotten to know her. And she is amazing. She is super duper sharp, so she is known. Some, some people call her the podcast princess.
RV (00:48):
She’s the host of a huge podcast called The Young and Profiting, or the Yap Podcast, young and Profiting podcast, which is very regularly the number one business and entrepreneurship podcast across all different apps. So you’ll see her podcast charting. And then she’s also the, the founder and the CEO of Yap Media, which is both a podcast network with some of the biggest podcasters in the world are on her network. And then she also has, and this, you know, they’re like an award-winning social media, full service podcast, social media marketing agency for top podcasters, celebrities, CEOs. She’s had so many celebrities on her show as a guest. And she’s probably known. I mean, she’s also known for being a top top influencer on LinkedIn. So anyways, I was like, gotta have her on the show. Gotta learn from her. Gotta get free coaching for me at the same time for all of you. So, Hala, welcome to the show.
HT (01:48):
Wow, what an incredible introduction, Rory. I’m so excited for this conversation.
RV (01:53):
I, I seriously am so impressed by you. And you know, it’s one thing, there’s plenty of people with lots of followers, but when, you know, like Jenna Kucher or Julie Solomon or like the, like the Marshall Goldsmith, these people that you have worked with that, you know, and I know a lot of them, they don’t lightly throw around a, like, compliment behind the scenes. And so I was super impressed before I met you. The more I’ve gotten to know you, I’m just like, man, you are just so sharp. And I feel like we, we have very complimentary superpowers. So I wanna start with podcasting. Mm-Hmm. . Because that I feel like was the first world you dominated. I mean, you were on the cover of podcast Podcaster. Podcast magazine. And you know, I’m curious about today, you guys have a podcast network. Mm-Hmm, . So you run several of the top podcasts. What are some of the things that, that podcasters should be doing to grow their podcast today? And specifically, I think a lot of people are like, you know, they go, it’s too late to start a podcast. All the, you know, it’s all the, there’s so many big shows, I missed the wave. So I’m curious, is that true? And if not, you know, what can you be doing to kinda like catch up a bit?
HT (03:13):
Yeah, what a great question. So, first of all, you, it’s never too late to start a podcast. When I started a podcast six years ago, people told me it was too late. Now I’m literally at the top of Apple charts every single day, right? When it comes to growing your podcast, really what, what you need to think about is how do I create the least friction possible for people to subscribe to my show? Hmm. And when you think about that simple question, it’s really, I need to reach podcasters where listeners where they are, I need to reach these podcast listeners where they already are. I don’t need to try to convert them from some other platform to decide to listen to podcasts, to decide to listen to my podcast. That’s a really friction, full experience, but experience. Instead, I can guest on other podcasts like we’re doing right now, where people are already listening to a podcast app that they like, they’re already bought into the idea of podcasts, right?
HT (04:05):
I can do commercials on other podcasts and I can actually track and see based on the commercials that played another podcasts who went and then downloaded my show and started listening to my show. I can look at all the different podcast players out there and see what advertising opportunities are on all the different podcast players. There’s about 70 different apps. Apple and, and Spotify make up about 60% of the market share, but 40% of the market share is made up of 70 other apps that you can advertise on Android apps, castbox Google Play, you know, there’s a, a number of them you can think about. What are the ways that you can proactively influence the algorithms of the ranking charts so that you can rank and get discovered through ranking on Apple and Spotify. So you just have to keep thinking about how can I actually reach podcast listeners in the podcast apps? And a lot of it has to do with actually collaborating with other podcasters, which is why this podcast space is very collaborative and you hear a lot about like, swaps and trades, because the number of audience members who actually are active podcast listeners, they’re sort of finite and they listen to seven or so shows. So you wanna be one of those seven shows and you wanna get into that person’s ecosystem.
RV (05:16):
A amazing, so that, I think like you just gave, I think what’ll be an outline for the whole, like our whole interview together. ’cause I wanna dive deep on those, on those specific things, right? So, so first of all, part of what I want to know is how do you know if a podcast is legit? Hmm. Like what, what tool, what metric do you use? Like, you know, you can kind of go on Instagram and see how many views someone has on their reels, how many comments do they have? Like, you get a sense of like how real the whole thing is. Podcasting feels a little bit tougher to me. Mm-Hmm. just because it’s like, there’s, where do you look to see Yeah, the downloads, the ra, I mean, other than the top a hundred I think, which are in iTunes, like, how else do you know?
HT (06:05):
Oh yeah. So first of all, I just wanna call it out. There’s like a lot of fraud going on within the podcast industry. There’s a lot of people bloating their downloads using virtual machines to load their downloads. Something called coin marketing to blow their downloads. So a lot of fraud going on in the industry. One of the first things that I look to, ’cause I have to basically accept podcasters into my network. So I can just give you the process that I vet my own podcasters before I totally sign them. Basically what I do is I look at their, first of all, they’re Apple reviews. It is a huge red flag for a podcast to be like ranking or saying that they have, let’s say even over a hundred thousand downloads a month. Which, if you’re getting a hundred thousand downloads a month as a, as a podcaster, you’re really in the top 0.05% of podcasts, like four real.
HT (06:52):
It’s very rare for even like the biggest shows in the world to get like 700,000 downloads a month or a million downloads a month. So it’s not this thing where podcasters are getting a billion downloads per month or a couple million. And that’s a normal thing. That’s not normal in the podcast world. Actually, a real show with organic following a big show will have anywhere from a hundred thousand to maybe a million million five downloads a month. And that’s sort of the cap on the audio side, right? Like right now. So it’s like just knowing that what the realistic numbers actually are. Sure. looking to see on their reviews. If you are somebody who says that you get over a hundred thousand downloads a month and you don’t at least have two or so new reviews from the month, that is a huge red flag for me.
HT (07:33):
I go on people’s reviews and I see that the last review they had was last year. There’s no way you have active listeners in the last review you had as last year, right? So it’s like, if you go look at a podcast like mine, you’ll see that I have like dozens of reviews every month. Now if you have hundreds of reviews, that’s you prob somebody probably did a contest or it’s maybe not legit. But if you have dozens of like dozen or so real reviews every month, that shows me that you have an active audience, it’s really hard for every like 10,000 listeners you get a review or even more, right? So it’s really rare to get a review, but if you have none, that’s a huge red flag. Okay. So that’s number one. Number two is there’s different rankings. So there’s Chartable podcast rankings, there’s Apple, there’s Spotify, those are the main three.
HT (08:16):
Apple and Spotify are trending charts that are gonna show you who’s getting new downloads every day and new subscribers every day. And the chartable charts are actually download and reach charts. So if you wanna understand somebody’s actual reach, you wanna see their chartable rankings and see what is their reach on a global level, on their category level. And then you’ll get an understanding of how big that podcast is out of all the podcasts in the world. So like, if you go on Chartable, I’m in the top 1000 of podcasts and most of the podcasts in my network are in the top 1000 of podcasts. The bigger you are, you might be the top 500, and that’s actually a direct relationship to your IAB certified downloads across all the different apps. Not just Apple, not Spotify, all the different apps. So at one point when I was not huge on Apple, I would rank really high on Chartable ’cause I’m the biggest podcaster on castbox, but I had a very little following on Apple, so I wasn’t even ranking on Apple.
HT (09:08):
So Chartable gives you an idea of actually how many downloads you have, no matter what app it is, and is directly correlated to your reach as a podcaster. So I look at Chartable downloads, then I look at Apple and Spotify to see like if they’re trending, if they’re growing, if they’re hot, or if they’re sort of like outdated. And then the other thing is to look at the timing in which the person started the podcast. If you are a podcaster like Louis Howes or Jordan Harbinger, or somebody who started Amy Porterfield, Jenna Kutcher, some of the people in my network, they started a long time ago, they’re likely to have more organic downloads than a podcaster that started even three years ago. That’s ranking at the same level because they’ve got all these like, legacy subscribers from when there was no competition. So just like so many different factors to look at.
HT (09:51):
The other thing I I look at is to see like, how are their reels performing? Do they get real comments on their reels and social media? Because all of that is correlated. It’s, it’s pretty unusual for somebody to have like a huge podcast but then have very little engagement on other channels. That usually signifies to me that either they got really lucky, they’ve got an awesome podcast topic that everybody’s searching for. In that case, it is legitimate that they could have no so social following, but if it’s not it, that seems very suspicious to me that they would suddenly have a podcast following, but no other following on other platforms. Mm-Hmm.
RV (10:22):
, although there are a few of those, right? There are
HT (10:25):
Like, there
RV (10:25):
Are like, like there are, there are a few of those. So that’s interesting. Okay. So charitable is where you’re looking. And just for those of you that are listening, , it is funny you mentioned Lewis Howes. I literally, the other day, like two days ago, he texted me something with IAB, he said, he said, what are their IAB downloads? And I was like, what is IAB? Like I had never heard that term , so I forget what it stands for, but that’s like in the world of advertising, that’s like the, the, the actual gold standard of like, this is the actual number of downloads that you can get paid for, right?
HT (10:59):
So IAB is basically this bureau that determines what is the standard download, and then all the platforms sort of align to the standard to count what a real download is. Mm-Hmm. to protect advertisers, basically.
RV (11:13):
Yeah. Okay. So, so I wanna talk about advertising. So it’s interesting you said to grow your podcast. You run, I forget what you called it. I don’t think if you said commercials, but you, but you know, more or less you’re, you’re running ads on other people’s shows. Yes. so how do you go about doing that? So let’s say you find someone in your niche, right? Like, let’s say you’re a, you know, whatever, like a, a lifestyle influencer who does like home decor or something. Do you go, you basically go on chartable or listen notes, you figure out, here’s the podcast I want to be on, and then you just like DM the person and say, what are your rates? Or like, is there a more formal way of going about that?
HT (11:57):
There’s lots of different ways to go about it. So now there’s a new platform called Swap fm. There’s also called a pla a, a platform called pod, which was like a legacy platform doing similar things where you can basically solicit that you’re, you, you want to buy commercials on other podcasts and set up trades on pod, you buy the commercials on swap fm, you set up trades if you want to just reach out to somebody cold what I would do is look up somebody in your category or just anybody who you know has a podcast that you feel like has a relevant audience for you, reach out to them on Instagram. You can, you know, get their email from LinkedIn, like scrape their email if you want, reach out to them on LinkedIn. And then you basically have to plan what the swap is.
HT (12:40):
So usually it’s an equal impression swap. You figure out how many downloads do you get a month, how many downloads do I get a month? Again, you wanna make sure it’s a legitimate podcast so that you’re not trading with somebody who has like a fraudulent audience or doesn’t really have an audience and that it’s a fair trade. So you might say like, Hey, I’m gonna trade 50,000 impressions with you this month. Now Jordan Harbinger is one of my mentors, and we do trades all the time. His show is like five times bigger than mine. He’s one of these legacy podcasters. Even though we both rank at the top of the charts, again, those are trending not based on reach. So, hi, even though we’re ranking the same, he gets five times more downloads than I do. So when I do one commercial for every five commercials I do for him, he does just one commercial for me.
HT (13:24):
And we do something called an impression based swap. So even if you are a smaller podcaster, you can actually trade up with bigger podcasters by doing more commercials for them. So the impression amount doesn’t have to be only what you can achieve. You basically figure out how many commercials do I need to run in order to hit the impressions that I wanna trade. And so you, you do those types of commercials. Then on Chartable you can set up something called a smart promo campaign where basically you just set up a pixel on your hosting provider, same with the other podcaster. And you can basically see who went and listened to the podcaster’s commercial and then came to your podcast and downloaded your podcast. And you can see how many downloads you got from that trade. It’s not directly correlated with subscribers, but it’s a good indicator of who came and subscribed to your show as a result of the trade. And then the shows that do well, you wanna lean in and keep doing trades with them until you don’t see that return anymore.
RV (14:21):
Fascinating. Okay. So that’s what I was gonna ask you. So you basically, there’s a, you said on the smart pro promo campaign inside of Chartable, there’s some type of a pixel that you set up that like an auto, like an auditory pixel somehow?
HT (14:34):
Yeah, basically it’s like on the, the episode itself I, I don’t recall if it’s like actually setting up a chartable pixel across like all your hosting or the episode itself. I’m not, I don’t remember. ’cause I don’t haven’t done this in a while, like myself, I have a big team now. But yeah, you set up a pixel and it basically just tracks the episode and then you have all the conversion data.
RV (14:54):
Okay. So, but when you were starting, you would do this and then you would see, oh, this podcast that I either was on or like that I bought, I either did a swap or I bought a commercial on their show. We could, you could track that with somehow this pixel and then go, oh, I wanna buy more ads there until that, just, until that starts to dwindle
HT (15:13):
Basically. Totally. And now Swap FM allows you to do this in a way less technical way. So that’s why I was saying like you could also just use swap fm now to do it, which is like, I’m getting my whole network up on swap fm. So we could just do this internally really seamlessly.
RV (15:27):
Uhhuh. Yeah, that’s so, that’s so good. The so now when you, once you, once you, once you start to grow, like how much do you charge for podcasts? So this is another thing that really comes up is like, when, when is your podcast big enough to charge advertisers? How much do you charge? Where do you find the advertisers? Like do you know that, that, that whole thing and like, you know, kind of give a maybe if, if you’re able to give like a small, like a smaller show just starting out, like here’s when you’re first ready and then over time they become, they, they probably join like a network like yours. Right? And that’s part of what you, you handle. So give us like the small and the large short term, long term.
HT (16:16):
Yeah. So as like a individual podcaster, you can start at any point to try and get direct sponsorships. There’s no limitation, right? Especially if you have a really niche audience. Like let’s say you’re a, you’re a lawyer and you’ve got an audience, and even if it’s a hundred lawyers are listening to every episode, you can proactively reach out to LegalZoom and try to get a sponsorship because even though you’ve got a small audience, it’s exactly who they’re targeting. So they may wanna work with you and then advertise on your podcast or socials and whatever else as like a micro influencer of that specific niche. So the more niche you are, the more that you can get started on monetizing, I believe, right away. Okay. Got it. Now if you have a broad audience, typically if you, if you wanna get advertisers, you’ve gotta really wait to getting about 20,000 downloads per week or about 80,000 downloads a month.
HT (17:08):
That is typically the first step of you getting sponsorships would be to apply to a podcast platform like advertise, cast or gumball to try to do your sponsorships direct. And the limitations of that platform is 20 to 25,000 downloads a week for you to be accepted to start getting direct deals from a podcast. They call themselves a network where they just basically accept any show that gets that amount of downloads and they’ve got like hundreds of shows and they’re just this like middle man between agencies and brands. And if you do well for them, they’ll get you a lot of deals. So like the first step is to get that many downloads and then plug in if you have an internal team to, to like an advertised cast or gumball and start doing direct outreach that is monetizing on your own. Now, the next level would be to join a network like mine, whose job is to not only get you sponsorships, but also to host your show on their hosting provider to flight your ads and to actually grow your show through growth tactics and swaps and, and whatever it is.
HT (18:12):
So a network has other incentives. They’re, they’re exclusively driving your brand deals negotiating on your behalf, soliciting directly and through agencies on your behalf. But then you’re also hosting their show, growing their show flighting their ads and doing other services for them. So a network is a more like exclusive thing. And typically, you know, for my network, for example, we’re looking for people with 150,000 downloads per month or more, maybe a hundred thousand downloads. Podcasts is actually getting there’s been a big Apple update. So a lot of people’s downloads on Apple have actually shrunk 30 to 40%. So our tier to let you in the network has significantly lowered because in November, most of the legacy podcasters out there on Apple lost 30 to 40% of their downloads. So now in general, standards are a little lower in terms of download counts.
RV (19:04):
So there was just like an Apple update, just like a Google SEO update and it just crushed everybody
HT (19:08):
Down. There was an Apple update in November where basically there’s no more auto downloading if somebody has not listened to your show in like six months. So a lot of these older podcasters that had these legacy audiences, it turns out there was just a lot of auto downloads happening. Mm-Hmm. And now it’s better for advertisers because it’s actually real listeners who are active listeners of the show, but these legacy podcasters thought they were getting a million downloads a month, turns out they might be getting 500,000 or 600,000. And so there was a big, big impact in the industry and caused a lot of like back and forth with advertisers because of the, the download discrepancies.
RV (19:41):
Mm-Hmm. . And then so I love that. So thank you so much. Like, that’s so helpful just to kinda like see what the trajectory is there and yeah, and I know some people that have small shows, like you’re saying, that are niche audiences where they were able to get a flagship sponsor for like a hundred thousand dollars a year and they sponsor the podcast, their events, their email list, their blog, their social, and it’s like a platinum sponsor for like every piece of media that, you know, this creator Yeah. You know, makes, so that’s, I’ve, I’ve, I’ve heard of that before. If you are going to pay for commercials, okay, so let’s say that you go, okay, I wanna buy commercials. You mentioned pod,
HT (20:26):
Pod yeah, pod you could also use advertise, cast gumball, the other platforms that I was mentioning as
RV (20:33):
A, as a, as a buyer. Yes. And then roughly like, is there a, is there like a rough budget that you would apply or, you know, is there kinda like a minimum that you have to spend? Or like how do you even come up with
HT (20:46):
That number? It’s just based on the size of the podcast. So all advertising and costs is very standard on the audio side of the podcast industry. So it’s all CPM based, it’s cost per 1000 downloads. So, you know, if you’ve got a show that gets a hundred thousand downloads, you wanna buy Midroll on that show, it costs $25 per 1000. You’re spending $250 per commercial on that show. And typically these shows will have like a three flight minimum just so that they aren’t only getting paid two 50 to do a commercial. Podcasters are hesitant to just do like one off deal. So it’s like there might be a three flight minimum. So you might have to pay $750 for three commercials on that show.
RV (21:27):
Uhhuh I think that,
HT (21:30):
I think I did the math wrong. I think it’s $2,500. The commercial, not two 50.
RV (21:34):
You’re saying $25 per thousand?
HT (21:38):
Yeah, 25 times a hundred. So that would be 2,500 per commercial.
RV (21:42):
Yeah. So se so you’re saying, so then it would be 7,500 bucks is what you would pay to have, like,
HT (21:49):
And you’d get 300,000 impressions total.
RV (21:52):
Okay. Yeah, the math, there’s the zeros, it’s like the zeros, it’s
HT (21:56):
. I can say it over again if you want. So that we have No, that’s
RV (21:59):
Okay. They can, we can go, we can go back and rewind. I, I’m okay. I, I’m, I’m following you. So what is dynamic insertion and explain to us what, what is dynamic insertion? How do you do it? Why does it matter? And if you don’t use dynamic insertion, then what, what, what, what happens then?
HT (22:23):
Sure. So when podcasting first came out and there was advertisers, people would bake in their ads. What does that mean? You would actually record an ad and it would be embedded in your podcast episode. Now, as all these podcasts came out and they put out episode after episode, what they found out is that a lot of people will go back and listen to older episodes. And so there’s all of these downloads that people are listening to, but they’re listening to old commercials from sponsors that are no longer actually paying the podcaster, right? So these baked in spots caused a problem because you were unable to monetize your podcast fully based on the new people that were listening. So dynamic ad insertion fixes that problem. So basically if I get a hundred thousand downloads per month and I get an advertiser to sponsor my show, that means that the ad will play across every single episode. No matter if it’s a new episode or an old episode, it will play across the podcaster’s entire catalog. So every week I have sponsors and I record my commercials, and the commercials that I record get played across every single episode, no matter if it’s episode one or episode 400 on my podcast they hear the same commercial. So that’s basically what it is. It’s just infl the commercial across the entire catalog.
RV (23:40):
How do you set it? So like, what does it take to set that up? Because like when you first start, you go, oh, I’m just recording on my microphone, I’m uploading, you know, I’m uploading a file and we’re off and running. But then in order to get dynamic insertion going, what, is there like a tool that you use for that?
HT (23:54):
Yeah, so there’s two hosting platforms that allow you to do this. Primarily it’s megaphone and art. 19, if you’re on those platforms, you’re like basically getting ready for monetization. You’re a podcaster who’s getting like 80,000 plus downloads a month, like, and you’re basically ready for this step. So moving to a hosting provider that allows you to do dynamic ad insertion and allows you to plug into a programmatic advertiser like Spotify ad network where you basically can have prerecorded commercials play on your podcast. Okay. So the way that you set it up is you basically have to decide where you’re going to be inserting all of these dynamic ad commercials. So for example, a typical podcast might have like two pre-rolls, maybe two mid roll breaks with two ads each, and two post rolls. So all those insertion markers need to be added in your hosting provider.
HT (24:42):
Then once you get hosted ads, you have to record those commercials, and then you basically flight them in the insertion markers that you’ve set up in your hosting provider. And then for any open inventory you can basically put that up for programmatic ads to say Spotify ad network. If anything’s open and it’s not filled with hosted ads, they’ll play a prerecorded commercial in that spot if they find a brand that matches. So that’s what podcasters are doing. They’re basically setting up insertion markers. They’re getting their hosted ads either from their network or directly, they’re placing the ads in the proper insertion markers, and then anything open they’re leaving for programmatic ads if they’ve turned that on.
RV (25:23):
Yeah. So I’m gonna officially call this that you who are listening have had your mind blown many times, and your brain is gonna burst if we keep going. And I think this is the spot to land. But I wanna, what I wanna say is, you see what I meant when I told you I was impressed? Like Hala has such a defined system and just a deep knowledge, right? This is a deep expert of somebody who understands algorithms and platforms, and we are just talking about podcasting. Like LinkedIn is, I would, is maybe arguably even your bigger, your, your, your bigger specialty. Maybe we’ll beg to have you come back on the show at some point, but like and then also, you know, Instagram and the other, other platforms. But so if one of the things can, can you tell us Hala just really quick about so you have your, you have your podcast network, right?
RV (26:18):
And I, I’m gonna, I’m gonna tell people what to do at some point if they want to get in touch with you. In fact I’ll go ahead and share that now. So what I want you all to do, if, if you wanna get in touch with Holla, you know, you can reach out to us in [email protected] and I just want you to put Yap in the subject line, YAP for Young and Profiting. And then it’s possible that you would go, Hey, I want, you know, maybe you wanna apply to be a part of her network. But the other thing that she does is that she does high-end, sort of white glove, full service social media management. Mm-Hmm, . So can you just talk like, briefly about what that is that you guys do for people on, on, on that side?
HT (26:59):
Sure. So like Rory said, I’m the podcast princess, but I’m also the LinkedIn queen, so I know everything about that platform. I’m running the number one LinkedIn marketing agency. I run most of the influencers on LinkedIn right now and has have been responsible for growing dozens of influencers on that platform. So essentially I have a white glove, social media and podcast agency. We stand up a dedicated team for all of our clients, which includes an account manager, a ghost writer, a graphic designer, a video editor, a community engagement specialist. We do sales funnels on Instagram and LinkedIn, and that is definitely our secret sauce. So we’re doing dms all day to try to drive growth and conversions for our clients. Most of my clients are in this space of being like an author, a speaker, a big entrepreneur, a coach.
HT (27:47):
They’ve got courses. This type of a person does really well with us. Anybody who basically has a converting offer all 10 x anything that they’re doing, especially on a platform like LinkedIn. And then we also are experts in creating podcasts, growing podcasts, and then eventually monetizing podcasts including YouTube and simulcast. So those are our, like, main areas is that we’re the number one LinkedIn marketing agency, also crushing it for people on Instagram podcasts and YouTube. And we do everything end to end where we basically have like a very intensive onboarding process. We’re managing your brand, your voice, your graphics. I have an amazing video team, creative team, and essentially everything that you guys see, like on my platforms, it’s like basically my team doing it and we do it for other people. So it’s, it’s incredible. I love my team. We’ve got a huge team, 50 people plus around the world. And we’d love to speak
RV (28:42):
To you. And I think, and, and what I would say there is, is going, it’s also like, you know, you’re, it’s an investment in a team and, but rather than having to hire and manage a team yourself, you can just hire Holla and her team, and then you, they go build the team. And so if you’re in that, if, if you’re in that mode of like, someone make my pain, go away, like, just deal with all of this, and you go, I’m, I’m serious, you know, I’m ready to invest. So email, email us info at bramble, just group.com, put, put YAP app in the subject line. Or you can reach out to Holla, holla and tell her that you found our found, found us here, whatever. But that is something I wanna make you aware of. ’cause That’s not what we do at Brand Builders Group, right?
RV (29:24):
Like we are a strategy firm and we get asked a lot about execution and social media is a real big pain point. So that was part of why I wanted to have her on the show. And I wanted to just give you a taste of like, you know, the, the way, the way that, the way that I talk about like book launches and speaking, as you can clearly see, it’s the way that this woman talks about podcasting and social media. I mean, it’s, it’s deep, deep, deep expertise. So holla, thanks for the time. I mean, you blew my mind. I, I’ve
HT (29:52):
Podcasting thanks
RV (29:53):
For a long, long time. So I just am really, you know, grateful to know you and grateful for your wisdom and you’ll look forward to staying connected.
HT (30:01):
Likewise. I really enjoyed my time with you. Thanks Rory.

Ep 428: Podcasting- Behind the Scenes Edition with Carli Van Heerden

AJV (00:00):
Hey, hey everybody, and welcome to another episode of the influential Personal brand, AJ Vaden here. And today is super awesome and exciting because we’re gonna talk about podcasting on the podcast. One of the things I was just sharing with our awesome guest, Carly who I’ll introduce in just a second, is there are probably within our community the, probably one of the most consistent requests that we’ve been getting here lately is how do you know when you should do a podcast? Or, Hey, I’ve been thinking about doing a podcast. How do I get started? Or, Hey, I have a podcast and now it’s taking off, but it’s a lot of work for me to keep up with. Or, Hey, I have this podcast and it’s not taking off , I dunno what to do about it. And so we decided to just have an awesome conversation with one of our brand implementation partners.
AJV (00:54):
We edit podcasts who we have used for the, since the beginning of this podcast, but this is our second podcast with We Edit podcast. We actually use them in our former podcast, but I don’t know, Carly might know more than me how many episodes you guys have produced for us thus far. But we are five, five years and some change in well over a hundred episodes. And so I just thought what a great way to both highlight what we’ve been able to do through the lens of podcasting. And it’s been such a gift for us. But also talk about it with the person who’s actually helping us behind the scenes bring this to life and make this a reality. So if you’re someone who is a podcaster who wants to be a podcaster or who just likes listening to podcasts, this is a great episode for you today.
AJV (01:46):
So stick around if you want to learn about the world of podcasting and how to make it work for you. Now let me introduce you to Carly, who is the founder and c e o of We Edit podcast. We were just talking about this. She’s also a full-time mama which I personally relate to and I love that. But we edit Podcast is a full service podcast production agency. You guys have been around since 2015. I’m positively sure we’ve been using you since you started in business . It’s been a long time. But you guys work with anyone from podcasts made up from Fortune 100 companies to celebrities, entrepreneurs, small business owners, authors, speakers, thought leaders, and everyone in between. And so, well, I guess without further ado, Carly, welcome to the show.
CVH (02:34):
Oh, thanks aj. It’s such a pleasure to be here and I’m excited for this conversation. ’cause You know, if I’m not doing something about podcasting, then what am I doing? ?
AJV (02:44):
I’m gonna, I love, I love this conversation too because, you know, right before I hit record I had said, Hey, I’d really love for you to tell everyone, like, how’d you get into this? Why did you get into this? Because I mean, I know podcasts are wickedly important today in terms of just, I mean, I think it’s more than 51% of Americans say that they listen to a podcast almost on a daily basis. But when you started this in 2015, I don’t imagine that was the case. I know it’s grown exponentially since then. So why did you get into this?
CVH (03:18):
My gosh. So I feel like we should backtrack in time for this one. It’s honestly such a, such a memory lane thing, but you know, I had been freshly graduated on university with my Bachelor’s of Commerce in my pocket. Here I go. I had actually moved across to South Africa to plan a wedding. And then after that all happened, we decided to do an impromptu travel through Southeast Asia for our honeymoon slash I don’t really know what we’re up to, just traveling around. And my husband had launched his podcast that year prior to that. And so he was spending so much time, obviously interviewing guests, going through the process and then sitting there editing his, his show. And I’m like, man, we could be doing something else about right about now. Like, is there so that he somebody that can help you with and his, and he’s like, you know, there’s probably some freelancers doing editing work and all this stuff that he, oh, some people that he know, but there, there’s not really like a company that you can just submit click and wait for the whole thing to happen. And I was like, Hey, here’s an idea. You know, why don’t we do something like that? Why don’t we just step into this world of helping people with their podcasts? And voila, there it was. We had a podcast was Born . I love that from just that little idea.
AJV (04:37):
You know what the, I love stories like that because it starts with your own need. Exactly. It’s like, if I can solve this, you know, need for myself solve this problem for myself, then surely I can solve it for someone else. And I love it when stories start like that because it was, it’s organic and it’s like, we got a problem, let’s fix it and then let’s help other people fix it too.
CVH (04:58):
Exactly. That’s how it goes. .
AJV (05:00):
And now eight years in oh
CVH (05:03):
My gosh, it’s grown to something I couldn’t even have imagined back then, right?
AJV (05:08):
I mean, I mean, it’s pretty awesome and I, and I just know that you guys are such a great partner for us and you guys do such a great job. And so I’m really excited to hear some of your thoughts behind the scenes of podcasting, right? Because that most people listen to the finished product, right? Like everyone listening right now, you’re getting, you’re gonna be listening to the finished product, but Carly and I are here sitting at the beginning of the product and there’s this whole middle part that nobody sees between this raw recording and then what actually gets published. And so I would love to talk about all the things that happen in between that people don’t realize and then very quickly get overwhelmed with. And this passion idea they had all of a sudden turns into a really big burden. So here’s my first question for you, . What would you say is the biggest obstacle that individuals face when, you know, not even starting, but like, just what do they face when it comes to actually getting their podcast out into the world?
CVH (06:11):
So a lot of times, like I even think to back to myself, back then, I had no knowledge about editing a podcast. Like what did I know about any of that technical stuff? It’s quite technical if you wanna go into it. I mean, there’s a lot of options to do raw podcasts and just put out whatever you record. But if you want that finished, polished look and sound, then you’re gonna have to invest in knowing what it takes to edit. And so people just get thrown off of that and they’re like, oh, I don’t even know how to do that, so I’m not even gonna get started. I mean, nevermind this latest age of video podcasting. How do I even set up a camera that isn’t a FaceTime or a, you know, this and that? What do I plug in which headphones? Which this. So you can come become very overwhelmed initially with that, that initial start. You know, like, where do I even start? Because sometimes like some people think, oh, it’s gonna be about, I don’t know what to talk about. No, that’s not true. A lot of people have their why, they know what they’re gonna say. It’s just like, now how do I connect that to essentially a podcast, you know, in the end. Mm-Hmm.
AJV (07:17):
. Yeah. So that’s a great question. So what would you say are the most important technical pieces or you know, equipment that people need to have at the very most basic level to go, if you really wanna do this so people actually listen to it, you should probably invest in blink blank. Like, what is that?
CVH (07:39):
So what I suggest is go into your listener’s shoes, what do they want to hear? Do they want to hear you like in a microphone doing a weird sounding podcast? No, they want to hear you loud and clear. They are not there to try and decipher what you’re saying. So invest in a microphone. I mean, the barrier to entry for podcasts is so low. You don’t need to invest in a huge setup or, you know, full scale production. There’s other options available to you. Like you can rent a studio. You can ask somebody who’s already had a setup, Hey, can you show me the ropes? Can you show me what works for you? What doesn’t? And then you can kind of, I mean, if you look online right now, the blog post out there about how to start a podcast is you, it’s like the number is infinite right now.
CVH (08:34):
So you can find that information so easily and it, the people go through it, they step by step, like walk you through each microphone option, each headphone option, the recording software that you can use. You know, everything that you can find out is out there. So you can do some research, find out what works for your budget, what works for your commitment and time and everything, and what kind of quality do you want. Do you want something that’s a live show and you’re sitting with somebody in a room chatting? Sure. Go for that option and just kind of find out what is, what is it that you wanna give your listeners and then go from there.
AJV (09:10):
Hmm. I love that because it really is so varied in terms of how advanced and you know, how you know all in show production value. Do you wanna go versus, Hey, I’m, I’m just getting started. I, I hope that my parents listen I don’t know about anybody else, right? There’s a lot of in between there. Do you have a favorite microphone that you’re like, man, this is just a go-to.
CVH (09:35):
I’m loving this one .
AJV (09:36):
Yeah. Which one is that? This is
CVH (09:38):
The sure. SMM seven B, you get the
AJV (09:42):
Sure M S seven B,
CVH (09:44):
SMM seven B
AJV (09:45):
CVH (09:47):
You get a smaller one too. That’s a, a lower price point, which is also the sure one, which is great. But there’s a ton of new ones always coming out right now. Like you can, I mean you can even use your headphones from your AirPods or whatever you want to if you aren’t ready to commit to something. But honestly, like the quality just makes a huge difference. And then when you do choose something like an editor or someone who can help produce your podcast, it’s much easier on their side too. ’cause They can’t out of thin air create great quality audio, but they can work with your audio when it’s got a base level standard that is good and make it polished. Right. So yeah, this one is great. .
AJV (10:29):
Oh yeah, I think it’s, that’s important because I think one of the initial tips that we got when we first started our podcast and our first podcast, I don’t even know when we started. It was a long time ago, maybe 2008, nine, 10, I don’t know. It was a long time ago. And we did not invest into good equipment for a long time until finally someone said to us, you know, we really love the content, but it’s so miserable to listen to. And I was like, what is, are you saying my voice is miserable? And they were like, no. Like it, the, the audio goes up and down and half the time it sounds like you’re in an echo chamber. And it wasn’t until that we actually sat down, which is pro tip number one, listen to your own podcast. We sat down and listened and we’re like, oh my gosh, this is what people have been listening to. This is horrible. And so it’s like, if you haven’t listened to your own podcast, go listen to your own podcast and you’ll know in a gif what you need to make quick adjustments for. And 95% of the time I bet it’s audio. I bet it’s audio. And if you have good audio to your point, Carly, it’s easier for the editors behind the scenes to make it even better.
CVH (11:43):
Exactly. Just how you said it right there, .
AJV (11:46):
Yeah. Well, and it’s true. It’s like I think about the best podcast that I listen to and it sounds, sounds like it’s a high production show even though I know it’s them in their home office with a microphone, right? But it sounds so good and it’s so easy to listen to and that, you know, regardless of how many people are, you know, watching the audio or the video versions, most people are still listening to the audio most of the time. And so really ramping up on the audio production makes a big difference. So, okay, here’s my next question ’cause I have a long list. I know I sent you , we’re not gonna have time to get to all these, but here we go. What would you say is the first step for that person who is going, I’ve always wanted to start one, I just haven’t known what the first step is. What would you say is the first step to creating and launching a podcast?
CVH (12:37):
What’s interesting, I was chatting to someone the other day about their process of starting their podcast and they said, you know what? I actually sat down and decided what is gonna be, what is my content strategy basically for my podcast? And you decide on the form, is it gonna be interview style? Are you gonna do a solo podcast? Are you gonna do live events? You know, so when you hone on that side of things, then you can kind of get a direction, okay, so if I’m gonna do guests now I have to email all these guests, find somebody to come on my show, book it all in. So it’s like a, it’s a whole process and you have to plan it on calendars not only yours, right? Because they’re not gonna be like, oh, I’m gonna start interviewing today. Oh sure I’m available. No, they’re booking out too.
CVH (13:21):
So you have to put that all into your planning. And then the interesting thing about that is like trying to find out when you’re gonna launch, which episode is it gonna coincide with that guest’s book launch or something to help them out? How can you make it more inviting for them to say, Hey, yes, that sounds like a great time for me to come on. But that’s the thing. Lot of us have our why we are already doing it in our business. Like for me, I’m already working in the podcast industry, so for me launching a podcast, I know what my why is I wanna teach podcasters or help them or give them tools. Okay, great, that’s what I’ve got, but how am I gonna convey that? What am I gonna do to get my message across in the most effective way? Mm-Hmm.
CVH (14:03):
So I would say you just have to put that type of planning into your content to begin with before you, you know, go off like, you know, on a whim. Like, I’m just gonna try out anything. That’s not to say you can’t experiment with your podcast format. Sure, be adaptable, be open to change, but have some kind of plan so that when you’re starting out, even if you start with step one, your step three might change, but hey, you had a step three to begin with so you have somewhere to aim to when you’re starting your podcast.
AJV (14:34):
Yeah, I think that’s really a wise sage advice because otherwise we’re just stuck in, you know, analysis paralysis. It’s like, oh, there’s all these different options. What should I do? And it’s like, no, just pick one. You can change it later, but just pick one. Since you listen to, or at least your team listens to a ton of these as you’re editing, do you see that there is a very common format that most people are still doing today?
CVH (15:02):
Yeah, I mean it depends on how often they’re publishing their episodes. So if they’re doing like a few a week, then there’s quite a variety in there. Like a sample for you guys, you have the interview and then you have your recap. So that makes for great content for you to put out. But if you’re not somebody who’s doing a recap or multiple episodes in a week, then you kind of have one format. You’re sticking to it, it’s working for you and that’s the way that you go. But yeah, people love guest interviews ’cause it’s bringing the experts on. It’s getting down to the nitty gritty of your topic at hand. And it helps to create variety because a lot of people are like, oh my gosh, I can’t think about committing two a hundred episodes. What am I gonna talk about for a hundred episodes about the same topic? Voila, guests enter. And guess that is how you do it because every guest that you bring on expert that you bring on, or even like everyday human in the street that you bring on about this topic, we’ll have a unique point of view and then you can find a way to create variety for your content.
AJV (16:12):
Yeah. Like even to that. And I’m glad, I’m actually really glad you brought that up because we decided in the very beginning that we were gonna do our full interview episodes and then we would do like our version of like a Cliff Notes episode that was like much shorter. But I will tell you consistently, and we track this pretty diligently, and this potentially is maybe just a tiniest bit of an exaggeration, but I bet we still get 10 times the downloads on our interview format than we do on our solo recaps. So then we’ve had this debate internally, well then why are we still doing them? And , we have basically decided like that is our form of content repurposing, right?
AJV (16:57):
So we may not be getting a ton of downloads on the recap episodes, but it’s giving us a whole new set of well produced video and audio content that we can then repurpose for blog and social media content. And it’s original and it’s now you have this amazing one hour interview that you can recap into a 10 to 15 minute recap where you’re not having to come up with all due content topics all the time that you’re pulling from these expert interviews. And it’s allowing us to take our spin, our take on it. And it’s a way of not necessarily are we expecting to grow the podcast with these recaps at this point. It’s pretty much proven we’re not going to be doing that. But it has been an amazing tool to give us fresh, new ideas and takes and twists on things to have fresh content that we can then repurpose for blogs, vlogs, social media and other things.
AJV (17:56):
And so I would just second, I was curious, it’s at least on our show anyway, the solo episodes so far underperform compared to the interview format. And I would even say our video show, our YouTube show version versus just the normal audio doesn’t even compare it’s audio downloads. 10 x and interview format. That’s the by far the runaway winner and our tiny little micro example. So it back to that’s like people love the conversation format as you’re beginning into those stages. Now I also have this question and this is totally your opinion and you don’t need any facts behind it. But since this is your world and it has been your world for a really long time, I would love to know what do you think makes a great podcast?
CVH (18:52):
Oh my gosh. Well, I know what the result is. Like if the result is an engaged, I’m not even gonna say audience, but community around your podcast that is like the result that you want. But honestly what you’re saying there, the the reason that your interviews are performing so well is because you’re blending your audience with their audience, your guest audience. So then it’s like, like you’re saying 10 xing your community around that episode. So how can it not be more valuable in the end? Yeah, to me, like, because I’ve seen so many different podcasts and like obviously listened to a ton and I’m venturing into the world of being on more of them. Some of the things that catch me in a podcast is the vulnerability and realness. Like if you are super staged and everything is perfect to a matter you kind of lose that little tug on the heart almost for me.
CVH (19:55):
So for me, when I listen my personal podcast, things that I find the most valuable and the most amazing podcast is like, there’s something that really resonates with me on a personal front. Like whether it’s to do with your mom’s, like the way that your mom taught you how to do this and that, and somebody mentions it about their mom or something that it’s like, oh my gosh. Or whether it’s like with my kids or something to do with like, everyday life or like a, a personal failure in my business or something that I can totally relate to on a raw like vulnerable level. It’s like, that’s gold. ’cause Not a lot of people are open to being vulnerable on podcasts because you wanna be like super mm-hmm. , you know, don’t make a mistake, don’t don’t say something inappropriate or Yeah. So that’s what I go for in podcasts.
AJV (20:43):
Yeah. And I think that’s, it’s probably true across the board at some level because if you really think about it, it’s like we’re not in, most people are not in this anymore just for the information. You can get information in a multitude of ways. I mean, I mean, think about all the ways it’s like, there are blogs out of the wazoo. There’s, I don’t even know how many podcasts, but a lot, there’s YouTube shows now, there’s TikTok, there’s Instagram, there’s whatever this new one is. Threads can’t even keep up . But there are so many content mediums. It’s, it’s not so much that people are going there for the information, it’s the way that you deliver the information. It’s your take on it. It’s with your personality, your spin, your uniqueness, your story, your experiences. And if you’re willing to share that part of you the vulnerable part, that is what, that is what catches
CVH (21:37):
Yeah, yeah, totally. That and the thing is like, it could be, it could be vulnerability too, but it could be comedy like some of the comedy podcasts out there. Like, they become so, like they draw me in. ’cause Sometimes I’m just like, man, I need a good laugh. And obviously people have a habit of scrolling social media for those things, me included, right? Because you’re watching all these funny reels and things. But if you’ve listened to comedy or like comedians on podcasts, it is hilarious. And it just takes you right out of where you are into like their world of comedy. And it’s just, you could be watching a show if you close your eyes, you know, that’s where you can imagine you are. So yeah, you’re right. It just connecting on that level of their experience and the way they deliver it.
AJV (22:21):
Yeah. So why, why do you think podcasts have taken off the way that they have?
CVH (22:28):
Oh my gosh. Because I, like, honestly, podcasts has been around so long, and to answer your question about how many podcasts the latest was, there’s almost 5 million out there. And in this last week, there’s like 200,000 new episodes that were launched and oh yeah, the stats are insane. But don’t let that scare you off . ’cause Honestly, everybody’s got their little, little corner of the world that, that they can talk about. But I think it’s become so powerful because people are not, not only doing it just because, Hey, I should start a podcast. This is what I should be doing. It’s ’cause they want to, they’re like marrying it with what they’re already doing, either in their life or their business or the way that they know that they love to influence people. So it’s become like an extension of who they are already. So yeah, I find that that’s, that’s one of the main reasons people are getting on the mic and just doing what they love. And I mean, for us too, as the host, right, it’s a thrill to meet with other people who, and learn about them because like we’re, we wanna learn too. That’s, that’s why we’re here. We’re here, we’re curious, we wanna learn something new. And when we get in touch and like one-on-one with these experts, it’s, yeah, it’s like a free learning little experience and experience. You’re willing to put in the work and the commitment. That’s what you’re gonna get out of it.
AJV (23:49):
Yeah, I love that. And I tell people all the time that there’s this hidden benefit, this hidden perk of getting to be the host of a podcast, which is Free Education , it’s free, it’s pre-education and it’s one of the best things. Not to mention it’s an amazing introduction tool, but the amount of learning that I get to participate in as in a host, it’s like, it’s phenomenal and it’s free. It’s like for, if for no other reason, it’s like I will always have a podcast because it is a great forum and format to just talk about the topics that you’re already interested in as a human being. Because if you’re interested in them, it’s likely at least a few more people on planet Earth are also interested in them. And so it’s like, it’s great education and it’s free and it’s at your fingertips, you know, like why wouldn’t we take advantage of that? So, okay. So I have three more questions for you before we run outta time. And I, I promise I’m watching the clock, but you, you and your team how many podcasts do you guys think you edit on a a weekly basis? Weekly
CVH (25:00):
Basis? Oh my gosh. On a weekly, oh, there are hundreds of, of episodes that we go through. I mean, from the start it’s been like 3,500 plus, you know, and we’ve worked with so many different kinds of podcasters, from individual ones to big companies, to even people who are white labeling our service. So I mean, then those people just push the episodes through because it’s all of their clients that coming our way too. But yeah, I mean, I cannot tell you how many I’ve listened to and how many show notes I’ve written Uhhuh back in the day when I was stomping the ground doing all the things . But it was awesome because like I’m learn, I learned so much and I mean, even my team, I encourage them like, Hey, take note of everything that you’re listening to because it can help you in your personal life. Like all these people that you get introduced to, like on the sidelines. It’s, yeah, it’s incredible.
AJV (25:55):
Yeah. So knowing that I imagine through the years and through these thousands of podcasts that you’ve edited that there are a, a couple of things that you see people do consistently well and some probably some things that you see people consistently not do so well. So if you could share with us what are some tips of the trade to ensure that you have a great episode and then what are some of those avoidable mistakes that we should be on the lookout for? So
CVH (26:29):
One of my main things is if you are gonna start a podcast, be a host, learn how to be a host. And that means listening. So learn how to listen. ’cause You, it’s great if you are chiming in when the conversation happens. But I’ve, I’ve had a lot of people who as the host, they’re interrupting their guest the whole time. So then on our audio side of things, that’s jumping into their audio, sometimes it goes over what your guest is trying to say. I know from my transcriptionist, they always tell me it’s in Anau audible. I can’t hear what they’re saying ’cause somebody’s interrupted them. So find a way to be a host and, and learn how to be a host with from listening perspective. Number one, from the second thing, if you have something that comes to mind, write it down. Have your little notepad and your pen and write something down if you think about it.
CVH (27:21):
And when your guest is done saying their thought, then you bring it up. Because if you interrupt them halfway through, your listener might not have been thinking the same thought that you are thinking about. So you then you’re interrupting the listener as well as your guest. So instead find a way to make it cohesive in that way. And then the third way I say is listen to other hosts. Find people that you think are, man, they ask such incredible questions or Wow, I just love how they transitioned from that answer to their feedback and in seamlessly into a question like, how are they doing this? You know? And some of the most like amazing g hosts like that are actually speakers, right? They’re, they’re speakers on stages, so they know these things. They ha just have a way of phrasing things or reflecting it back to their guest and that the listener learns even more just from you being such a great host. So honestly, my main things are those like find a way to be a great host, .
AJV (28:21):
I, you know, that’s so interesting to hear. ’cause I think a lot of people say, make sure you’re a good listener, but in context of this particular thing, you also have to think about, yeah, you need to be a good listener. ’cause If you’re cutting off your guests or talking over them or switching, it makes it really hard for the production component of this to turn out well, or the show notes feel discombobulated ’cause you were bouncing around. I had never thought about it that way. And so following that whole concept of being a great listener, not interrupting, writing it down actually helps you have a better produced show. Not just a better interview experience, but also, I, I didn’t even think about how complicated that would be if you’re like, oh, hold that thought. You just said something and then you’re like, okay, now continue. Right? , it might work in the conversation, but in terms of translating that to the listener and in show notes, I can see how that could be pretty chaotic.
CVH (29:24):
Yeah, exactly. And it’s a lot, I mean, sometimes it is a conversation, like if you have two hosts, obviously you’re gonna banter back and forth. It’s laughter. It’s like, not shouting, but some people are like, ah, my gosh. You know, yelling over each other. And that’s, that’s fun because that’s not really, you know, that’s not interrupting somebody who’s trying to communicate with your listeners. It’s, yeah, it’s a banter and you expect it. That’s part of the show. So, but that’s part of knowing who you are as a host too, right? If that is what your format is, go for it. If not, hang back, listen and observe and think these things through. But yeah,
AJV (30:02):
Those things, I think a lot of it comes back to listen to your own show.
CVH (30:06):
Hey, you said it first. .
AJV (30:08):
Yeah, listen to your own show. You’ll pr probably be your own worst critic. You would be the hardest coach on yourself, but listen to your own show. That’s a really important part of, you know, I think about it as a speaker, you know, we are like, one of the biggest things that we always did is like we forced ourselves to watch our footage. We would watch our footage and then we would watch it on rewind. We would watch it on fast forward. We would listen to it while not watching it, and then we would watch it on mute. And so it’s like we’re looking for all these different things. But we can do the same thing with our own show. It’s like you need to be a participant of the show. You need to know what it’s like to be the listener in order to be a really good host. And then I loved your comment too of like, what are the other hosts out there that you love? It’s like, man, I love the way that they’re a good host and the way they transition and that comes from studying your craft, is you gotta find other people that you think are doing a phenomenal job and picking up those tips. And so here’s my question. Who is some of your favorite hosts? Who would you say that you just think are crashing it in the podcast field?
CVH (31:15):
Oh my gosh. The last one that I was started, like just recently listening to was Natalie, Natalie Frank on the independent business podcast. She’s just, I don’t know, she just hits it. It sounds like she doesn’t skip a beat when she is replying to her guest. She’s converting it into a question. And I’m just like burning through those episodes, preparing for my own podcast, which has just been so inspiring. But yeah. And then some of the other ones, oh, I just interviewed Ashley Menzies, Baba Babatunde, and her voice is so calm and like she just really gets you centered and like, just relax. And I’m like, okay, yeah, that’s a good quality of a host because you need to, you know, don’t sound nervous and uptight about things. You need to be calm and collective as well to give your listener like an even better experience.
CVH (32:07):
So yeah, I’m just like soaking up everybody. Like I’m listening to the guests that they have on. Sure. But I’m out there to study the host to really get into like, in their shoes, like how are they doing this? Like what are their, what are their methods? And just listening to everybody. And obviously you guys, your conversations are so natural and you just like, yeah, I’m just like before I know it, I forgot that I was listening because I wanted to see your style. I’m like listening ’cause I’m drawn into the conversation, people into the conversation. Oh yeah. So I’m learning a lot.
AJV (32:43):
I love that. And you know, it’s, I think it comes back to, I think often, not just in the podcast world, in business, we forget to study, just to study. We forget that we gotta hone in in our craft. We get such in the rhythm of doing our thing that it’s like, oh yeah there’s probably ways we can improve. And two best ways you can do that are listen to yourself and listen to others. That is such a good refreshing reminder for me today of like, I can’t remember the last time I listened to one of my own episodes, . I’m like, oh, to do item go listen to my episodes. But that’s, it’s a really important thing. But then also it’s not just listening to other podcasts because you enjoy the content. It’s listening for the specific components of what am I trying to learn? What am I trying to gain here? Trying to figure out better transitions or better openings and better closes and listening with a purpose. Yeah. And those are such, such good tips. And then my other question is, what is one piece of advice that you would give to someone who wants to launch a podcast?
CVH (33:55):
Podcast? So this is actually something that I was struggling with personally is that whole thing of imposter syndrome. Like what makes me qualified to be here? And you might ask that as a newbie podcaster, you know, somebody who’s starting out but think is all of us have something to offer? The main thing is you have to figure out what it is, package it, and then put it out there. And instead of try getting trapped in this, why, why am I here? Am I allowed to be here? Turn your mindset and become the same thing I’ve been harping on in this episode is become a student. Like have a student mindset. If you’re just there learning, if you’re open about how you’re learning in this process, no one’s going to judge you. Like, I mean, no one’s gonna judge you anyways, but you yourself won’t judge yourself either because you’re like, I’m not imposing anybody. I’m here to learn. I’m doing this. You know, just adopting that student
Speaker 3 (34:51):
Mindset, you, your
CVH (34:55):
Journey as a podcaster, as a business owner, as anybody building a personal brand. It’s just finding a way to get through that obstacle, you know, packaging your who you are and what you have to offer. And then telling people, this is how I’ve learned to do it on my journey. And people will be so glad you did it.
AJV (35:15):
Hmm. You just reminded me of this quote I saw here recently and it said be you, there’s no one else like you, so why be anyone else? And it’s, it’s such a thing as we forget our own power, our own uniqueness. When we get stuck in that imposter syndrome state and you forget, it’s like, oh yeah. Like I, I am worth being here and what I have to say is going to help someone else. And it’s focusing on who you can help versus who you can’t. ’cause You’re not meant to help everyone and it’s just focusing on, there’s a group of people for you. Focus on them. Don’t worry about the people who aren’t for you. That’s not who you’re doing it for. You’re doing it for the people who need it.
CVH (36:02):
Exactly. And I just to add to that, like if you’re going out there to create a podcast, that’s for everyone. That’s probably not the right direction for you because not everyone is going to love what you put out there. But if there’s even one or two people that are touched by whatever you’re doing, how you’re helping them, and they, like I’ve heard so many people say, you know, I’ve got this feedback from this listener and somebody who said, oh, I helped them out here. And that’s just small things and it’s can like boost you into continuing to do what you wanna do and getting your podcast and your message out there and it’s just like, yeah, go for that.
AJV (36:39):
Mm. That’s such a good reminder. So before we go Carly, tell people what exactly you guys do at We Edit podcast.
CVH (36:48):
Oh my gosh. So we have involved for everything from edit, editing, audio for your podcast, video editing for your video, podcast transcription show notes. We even have a launch package for people who want some handholding on the launch podcast launch steps and you know, the whole process. So everything is so clearly laid out on our website. If you wanna find out anything about any services you could, we’re happy to hop on calls with you, making everything as easy as possible. And obviously our main thing is people love us because of our fast turnaround and great quality . So if you’re in a, sometimes we even get people who, oh, I’m in a crunch, I need this episode done, but my editor’s busy. Hey, can I sign up for your trial? Yeah, go for it. We’ll help you out. You know, like whatever we can do to make the lives of podcasters easier because I know a lot of work goes into producing a podcast. So yeah, we’re just here to help.
AJV (37:47):
Well, I would second what you just said, and I can’t say this about every vendor we’ve ever worked with, but I can say it about you guys, that’s all true. It’s you know, we just submitted, I don’t know, 18 hours of content to your team to edit uhhuh. And I think like by yesterday you already had like the first three episodes done since Monday. It’s like you guys are crushing it. And on top of that you know, we’ve been monthly clients for over five years and not only are you guys reliable and you do good work and you fast, you hit your deadlines, but you’re also super affordable. And you didn’t mention that I think you’re super affordable for what you guys do. So they’re one of our preferred vendors. Highly recommend them. We’ve used them for years on multiple podcasts for multiple projects.
AJV (38:36):
You guys do an awesome job and if you guys wanna check them out I will put a link in our show notes so you can go learn about all of their services and all that they do. And Carly, thank you so much for being on the show. This was insightful and helpful and it’s so good to get a behind the scenes look at someone who is literally listened to, edited and produced thousands of episodes. So thank you so much. For everyone else, thanks for tuning in. Stick around for the recap that apparently no one else downloads, but maybe you’ll .
CVH (39:08):
I listen to them. , I love them. They were my favorite. Yeah,
AJV (39:14):
They’re awesome. Go check it out, be the first and we’ll catch you next time on the influential personal brand. Bye guys.
CVH (39:22):
Bye. Thanks.

Ep 417: 3 Tips To Help You Uplevel your Instagram Game | Chelsea Peitz Episode Recap

AJV (00:02):
Do you want to know how to be better on Instagram? Well, I’ve got three things that are gonna help you do just that, and I’m gonna make this as short and sweet as humanly possible. But I just wrapped up an amazing conversation with a newer friend of mine at Chelsea Peitz, and I had Chelsea on the podcast, the Influential Personal Brand podcast, and we were having this conversation about how many people are like, how to just, whatever I do, it doesn’t seem to be working and Instagram’s not for me, and I keep trying this video content, but it’s, you know, no one is liking it, it’s not getting an engagement. So how do I be better at Instagram? Like, how do I be better on this platform? So here are the three takeaways that I think are really helpful and tactical that will allow you to actually take some movement immediately into actually being better on the platform.
AJV (00:55):
Number one is you have to know how the algorithm works. And it’s very simple. The algorithm rewards you when you spend more time on the platform. Surprise, right? It’s not a secret, but we, we think it’s this mysterious thing that we can’t figure out. And the truth is, now it’s quite simple. They reward you when you spend more time there. And the most time that you can spend there is an engagement, right? So it’s responding to comments, it’s communicating and engaging in the dms that matters. It’s not just the content you post and how many people see it, but it’s how much time are you spending on the platform and how much time are you engaging others on the platform? Because if you’re engaging with others on the platform, then you’re both spending time here. So if you’re doing that with lots and lots and lots of people, then you’re bringing more and more people back to the platform, and it’s gonna reward you for that then, because it knows that you’re spending time there and you’re bringing other people there.
AJV (01:56):
So it’s not just about posting content, it’s not just about great content. Those are prerequisites. It’s not just about consistency. Those are expectations. Now, now it’s rewarding. It’s like, well, how much time are you spending? Right? This, these are businesses, you know, like Meta is a business, a very successful high revenue business. So they’re in the business of making money. And when you spend time on there, ad revenues go up and more money comes in. So that is it, it’s simple. That doesn’t mean we have to like it, but it’s more time on the platform is how the algorithm works. So spend more time in engagement and comments and dms. And the other parts are prerequisites. You have to be posting consistently. It has to be good content, it has to be searchable and findable. Those are prerequisites. Now it’s how do we go from here?
AJV (02:47):
And it’s more time on the platform. And what I love what Chelsea said, she said, the most important conversation is the communication that you’re having on the platform. So that’s the first thing. Second thing is don’t forget that there are some things, tactical things that you can do to become more findable and more searchable. So don’t forget that Instagram, like all other social media platforms, is a search engine just like Google, just like YouTube it’s a search engine. People are going there, searching for things, entertainment, education relationships, engagement, whatever. But there, it’s a search engine. So you have to be findable, you have to be searchable. And there are two searchable fields on your profile that allow you to be more findable. One is your handle, right? So it can’t be, you know, jogger 1, 2, 3, underscore 2023. It can’t be it, right?
AJV (03:48):
You have to be findable. So as much as usually humanly possible, use your name, right? Mine is AJ Vaden. So it’s like, get as close to your name as humanly possible. But that’s what people are finding. It’s like I type in people I meet all the time and they’re like, oh yeah, just find me on Instagram. And I assume, oh, it must be your name since you said, go find me on Instagram. When it turns out, it’s like, no, it’s, you know, I can’t even think of one right now, but it’s like, you know you know, sassy Saysso. And I’m like, well, who, who the heck is sassy? I dunno who that is. So you gotta be findable, right? So that’s the first place. And then the second is where your name goes, right? So it’s your profile and then it’s your username, right?
AJV (04:35):
So it’s like your handle. And then it’s like, what is the actual name? So like where that is if you’ve got the blue chip, then you’ve got to, you also have something that’s legally identifiable on your license. So my legal name, , I don’t know if you knew this is not aj, it’s Amanda. So I had to come in there and put in a little bit more information. So it’s Amanda Johns Vaden Little Space Brand Builders Group, because it’s different than my handle, which is AJ Vaden, which is what I’ve gone by since age 10, but it’s not my legal name. So I’ve got my legal name, Amanda Johns, and then Brand Builders Group, because that’s what I wanna be associated with. That’s why I wanna be identified with, if people are searching for Brand Builders group or aj or in this case Amanda, which no one is doing that, but I want everything to be fined and coalesced together.
AJV (05:23):
So those are the two fields that are searchable. And then the rest of the information in that profile section is helpful, but it’s not searchable, right? So once somebody finds me or finds brand Builders group then it’s like, is this someone I want to follow someone I wanna look at their content, someone I wanna engage with? And I make it very clear like, this is what you’re gonna get from me, and here’s my call to action of how to engage with me off the platform. Those are all really helpful things. ’cause We’re not trying to build our audiences just on social media, right? Social media to us that it’s an advertising vehicle. But what you really wanna do is you want to move this relationship off of social media and into your email list or to a blog subscriber or a podcast subscriber.
AJV (06:10):
But we’re not trying to only access this relationship on the social media platform. We also want to have them on our platform so that relationship can be more intentional, more meaningful, more direct, right? So you gotta have your handle, then it’s like what you choose to put in that username category. So, you know, it could be what you do. In my case, it’s the name of the company. And then underneath that, it’s like, what’s gonna appeal to the audience I’m serving? And then what’s the call to action to engage with me off of this platform? So your profile section is actually really helpful and mostly it’s helpful in making you searchable. So make sure you capitalize that space as much as humanly possible. And then last but not last the importance of video content. Not everyone is gonna love that we’re talking about this yet again but video is favored and preferred on all platforms, not just Instagram.
AJV (07:05):
And so this is something that we do have to learn and we do have to be better at if we want to have this component of, you know, social media. If we want social media to be a component of our lead generation, customer acquisition, employee retention, customer retention. But this is marketing, this is awareness. This is the game that we’re in. This is how we reach people today, and we do it with valuable content. We do it with relationship and engagement. And those things can happen at scale all across the world. It’s not a bad thing. To have this opportunity and access, we just have to know how to use it in the right way. So a couple of quick tips for creating video content. Short and sweet. Save the best for first. You don’t need to introduce yourself at the beginning of every video.
AJV (07:53):
People know who you are for the most part, they’re following you if they’re engaging with you. That can be found in the captions below, that can be found later out later on. But they need to know, what am I gonna get from this short video, right? So we need to start with the best content we have. And so we need to lead with, you know, wanna know how building a personal brand’s gonna double your income in the next 12 months. I bet you do then go into the content, but you want to start with a little bit of that marketing pitch. It’s like, yeah, it’s like, I believe that you’re building your personal brand can double your income in the next 12 months, and I’m gonna tell you three ways we can do that, right? Or maybe you’re in the dental business and you’re going, Hey, do you still have metal crowns in your teeth?
AJV (08:39):
Wanna know why those are linked to X, Y, and Z? It’s like, yeah, I do. If I have metal in my teeth, I wanna know that. So it’s like, start with those headline statements. It’s always helpful to start with a question or a provocative statement, a fact, a statistic. But you wanna start with something that’s gonna catch someone’s attention. This is where that catchy marketing lingo is really helpful in your favor, but you wanna give people what they’re gonna get right up front, and you wanna save the best for first. Then you wanna make it short and sweet, then you wanna tell people, if you wanna learn more, here’s where you go. Right? That’s where you continue the relationship, continue the engagement. Other quick things, and these came from Chelsea. I thought these were so helpful in our conversation, .
AJV (09:22):
And if you’re watching this then you can see what I’m doing. If not, I’m gonna explain it. But don’t forget that if you’re like using your camera to film, it’s like you can just move your arm and get different angles, right? So it’s, I can start here and then here and then here, and then here, and then here. And it’s like all of a sudden you’ve got a multi camera angle shoot by just using your iPhone. But movement matters. It catches the attention, it breaks things up. If it’s just my little head in a tiny little box and there’s no movement happening the whole time just like this. We, we kind of get distracted kind of easy. Like we, we don’t have high attention spans today. And so we’ve gotta keep it engaging. That’s why it needs to be short, and there’s gotta be some interaction.
AJV (10:06):
Also if it’s your tiny head in a box, you can’t use your hands like I’m doing right now, which also really helps with the engagement factor. You can see when I’m getting excited or when I’m slowing things down those things matter. The other thing is that you’ve got to have captions that everyone listens to everything on audio they read. So having the captions makes a big difference, not just because you have some people in your audience who are hard of hearing, but because many people are walking through the airport or sitting in their cubicle at work and they’re not supposed to be maybe listening to things aloud, but they can be reading, they can be scrolling. And so it’s paying attention to the multifaceted ways of going. Like, we need movement, we need sound but we also need the words.
AJV (10:48):
And that’s easy. It’s all built into the platform that allows you to do that. Now, last but not least, this is the last thing. It’s don’t forget that you don’t have to create every single ev every single piece of content that you make. Now, original content matters a lot because it’s your story and everything else has already been said except for your story. So tell your story. No one else has your unique personal experiences, life stories only you do. So tell the thing that no one else can give the ideas and the examples, the only you can because they’re yours. But that’s not the only thing that you have to create content about. And you can vary it up so it doesn’t feel so overwhelming, like, oh, I have to come up with this brand new stuff every day or every week. No, you don’t. You can come up with it as it feels good and original to you, but don’t forget, every single day you get asked a certain amount of questions that you know the answers to. Could you share that content in a video? Don’t forget, every single day you ask questions
AJV (11:52):
That you need answers to once you get ’em. Could that be a piece of content you share with your audience every single day? You go places you see people, you have experiences, you encounter interesting or weird moments. Can other people relate to those? Does that create the human element that you need? Does that create relational value where somebody else can go, huh, me too. That happened to me today too. Like, I’m so glad I’m not the only one. Or I can’t believe this had happened to somebody else before. I thought I was the only one. Right? And it happens at both levels. And so don’t forget, you don’t have to create every single piece of content based on your original content, although that’s helpful and important and valuable, but there’s also everyday moments that we all experience all around us that allow you to create that human relationship online where someone else can go.
AJV (12:48):
Me too, me too. So if you wanna be better at Instagram it doesn’t take, it’s not rocket science, right? It doesn’t take a neurosurgeon to figure this out. But it does take some time and effort and intention if you want to do it. And it’s not for everyone. So don’t feel like you have to. And I think that’s a big takeaway. It’s like, if this is not the platform of choice for you because your audience doesn’t live there, skip pass, go move on. Don’t worry about it. These, there is no like rule of like, this is what you have to do to be successful. You do not have to have millions of followers to have a, a massive impact on lives that you are touching. You do not have to have viral videos to make a difference. You, you don’t just focus on the one, focus on engaging and building relationships just like you do offline, right? It takes time and work to build relationships in, in real life in person. It takes the same amount of work online. So don’t forget that time matters and it takes time to make this work. So there you have it. Here’s how to be better at Instagram with three quick tips that you can start doing today. See, you.