Today I look at tools available for podcasters to help them produce a better show.
Jim Edwards is a guy I've known online for years. I loved his "I Gotta Tell you" email list. We are talking back in the day when I was teaching people how to make websites with Microsoft Front page, and making videos with camcorder. I bought one of Jim's products he made with Mike Stewart and I thought they delivered value. I had bought some stuff from other "Internet Marketers" at the time, and thought this was better than some. I've always liked Jim's style as he takes his topic seriously, but always dishes it with a good helping of sarcasm. In a nutshell, Jim has been writing ebooks and making products for over 20+ years. According to his bio:
Jim Edwards, founder of Guaranteed Response Marketing, LLC, is an Internet expert, marketing entrepreneur, newspaper columnist, author, motivational speaker and elite mentor and coach.
Having gained personal and financial freedom, he shares his proven strategies with self-motivated, hard-working people to help them attain personal and financial independence.
He has written and published dozens of ebooks, several print books and hundreds of articles.
Through his company, Jim has produced some 40 informational products on DVD and many more available in the latest electronic formats downloadable from the Internet. Jim produces and hosts webinars on a weekly basis and has been a frequent guest speaker at numerous international Internet marketing seminars.
It's a software that works on mac or PC that walks you through planning your interview. It does this by having you figure out what you want to talk about before the interview. It walks you through 16 questions .These questions are then used in a series of tools used by the software. These include:
Email messages to setup and remind the guest for the interview. Later you can use it to create an email that you can send to the guest post interview as well.
Email templates for Referrals
Email Templates to say Thank You
Quick or Full Show Templates (complete with intro / outro ext and questions)
Audience Handouts - A worksheet for people to fill out as they listen to your episode.
Show Bullets - Custom Sales Copy for Each Interview
There are 12 different types of interview types
It will generate show notes for your episode
It will generate multiple Titles for your show and let you pick the best one.
Build Ads to help promote the show on Facebook, Twitter, etc.
So I took the interview from last week and added the information about my guest Danny Peña to see if I had used the software last week would the interview had been different. The closest interview style would be the "How the Expert Got Started" style. Now last week's show was different. I already knew the answers to the questions. I knew Danny's story and I wanted to walk him through the parts that focused on building his audience. Using the PIW I did some interesting questions that I could've asked but didn't:
Under the "Myths and Misconceptions" style of interview I saw "Where are the big opportunities in audience growth that many podcasters might be missing?" or "What are the best audience growth tools every podcaster needs to use and know about?"
Now I realize that the software is meant for you to use ONE style of interview, but if you're looking to come up with good questions, I can see where spitting out multiple versions of the interview might help you spotlight questions that really spur other questions that aren't in the software. Now I realize the "Show notes" and other templates are meant to come from one template not multiple ones. So if you mix and match questions, you are somewhat shooting yourself in the foot, and will have to mix and match to make the additional messages.
On the other hand if one style of questions gives you everything you need, you are golden. In watching a webinar for the software they made a great point. In some cases (for the person who hates to write) it's easier to edit than create.
Podcast show notes - Yes I could see using this in many places (G+, Facebook)
Email announce - Yes, this could be cool and it even says to copy and paste your bullet points
iTunes Episode Descriptions - YES this gave me 7 different descriptions and slew of titles
Show Title Templates - Yes. Again, a great way to brainstorm with yourself.
Ads - Very Similar to Titles and Descriptions - Useful again.
Email templates - ALL of the templates are great starting points. I ALWAYS would recommend personalizing these but they are focused and to the point. A good starting point.
Beginners Guide Interview Style _ At first this one was "meh" what is the first thing, second thing, but then it had this question, "What is the perfect mindset for a beginner podcaster at this point that would virtually guarantee their success?" and I went, "That's a good question."
Book Review Non-Fiction - Kind of a who, what, why, when and where. Nothing earth shattering, but useful for the absolutely newbie.
Critical Skills Interview - This is a cool template cause it has built in follow up questions. Yes its what's the first, second, third, but it also has you dig deeper. Thumbs up.
Faq - Probably my favorite style. Lots of good questions
Getting Started - A good set of questions. It does what it says it would do (there is a focus here)
Mistakes Style interview - I do plan on having Gordon Firemark ( a Lawyer) on the show eventually, and this would be a good template for Gordon
Myths and Misunderstandings - Here again, at first glance this seems too simple, but it has good follow up questions.
New Idea Interview - Here again, it would work for that type of interview, but this one isn't my typical interview so it didn't hit me as hard.
New Products - Again kind of the who, what, why, When, and how, but more to it. Great for beginners.
Rules of the Road - Probably the worst of all the template it was the same set of questions, but it fits the subject. What is rule 1, rule 2, etc.
State of union - I could see using these. I can see this tool helping you to never say "Oh how could I have forgotten to ask.."
Ste by Step Roadmap - This is a distant cousin of the Rules of the Road. Not my favorite.
Tips and Tricks - Here again pretty basic, and not earth shattering. I do like on some of these that kind of have repeat questions, there are additional questions at the bottom of the list.
Right now as I write this Podcast Interview Wizard is $197 at www.podcastinterviewwizard.com/sop (and yes that is an affiliate link). In addition to the software you get something called the Podcast interview wizard Blueprint which just walks you through using the software. There is some additional training on conducting interviews and I've only watched one of the videos, but was pleasantly surprised at how in depth Jim Edwards gets in this.
While anything more than a cup of coffee sound too expensive for software, there are people charging $85 per episode to write your show notes. So the software would pay for iteself with three episodes.
Make sure your podcast is a conversation and an not an interrogation. Just because you have your next question ready, don't forget to listen, listen, listen, because the best question to ask MAY NOT BE ON THE PAGE. Use these questions as a game plan, but be ready to call an audible. I've been interviewed where I'm pretty sure the host isn't paying attention to what I'm saying because they have their 7 questions, and they are just waiting for me to be quiet so they can ask the next questions.
DON'T DO THAT!
Don't forget to be you. You can use this tool to help you come up with an angle to help you QUICKLY get to the meat of the interview that is going to connect with your audience. There are going to be things that won't fit into a template, and that's where YOU come into play. This software doesn't know your audience. Last week I asked my audience what they wanted to know from Danny and they asked about how he works with his crew. That would not be in any of these templates.
Becuase of their podcast Gary and Margaret of the Kiwi Mana Podcast (all about bees) have met people from all over the globe.
Check them out at http://kiwimana.co.nz/
I appeared on round 63 of the Podcasters Round Table where we were talking Podcasting hacks (great episode)
I appeared on Business Mistakes Episode 35 talking about mistakes I've made.
Eric K Johnson did a great episode on critiquing your own show, and he mentioned last's week's episode.
So last week I was in a bit of a pickle. I knew Danny Peña had a great story. I had known it for a long time, but I never made the effort to have Danny on the show. I always known I would get around to it. Well in my laziness he appeared on the New Media Show, and Podcast Junkies. Now this is not a big deal, but I wanted to really bring Danny's story before anyone had really heard his story (that wasn't in the gaming world that is). So now I was going to have Danny on the show.
What could I do to make my interview stand out?
Danny's story needs no help. It's awesome, but still I wanted to stand out.
So listened to those interviews and tried to figure out what I wanted to have on this show, as well as anything that could make it stand out. There are no "bad" parts of Danny's story. This made it tough. So again, what could I do to be different. I never want to be like everyone else. So I added sound effects.
How did I know these would work? Because I had not heard the sound of a 56 K modem in a very long time and when I did it made me smile. When I heard the sound effect of pacman, the MTV theme, or the others sound effects I used they made me smile. I realized anyone under 30 wouldn't get the subtle joke, but those who did, would hopefully have the same reaction I did. They smiled.
If you are looking to start a podcat, want personalize attention, then the School of Podcasting is for you.
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Danny Peña got his first video game console from his Grandmother and his life was forever changed. Little did Danny know (who goes by the name of Godfree on his show) that he would someday be getting paid to fly around the world and play video games on his podcast Gamertag Radio. Did he think he would end up working for CBS and be featured next to podcasts like 60 minutes on play.it? Probably not. Today you will learn how Danny started building his audience before there was podcasting. Danny continued building his audience before there was iTunes. Through everything he does, Danny cares about one thing: the audience.
There are sooooooo many lessons to be learned today.
Interview starts at 3:38
Free Doesn't Last: Danny got his first check from mp3.com a site that was "Too big to fail" just like MySpace (and who knows some day Facebook?).
The party of the year took a year of planning: You don't get these kind of results by "winging it." Check out this video of the party and you can read how the Miami New Times called it the Best Super Bowl party in South FL.
Know more about your audience than their age and sex: Danny brought in musicians who his audience liked. The musicians brought in their audience who probably liked to play games.
Be straight with your audience: Any perks Danny and his crew have received has always been communicated to their audience.
TRUST is everything: It takes a long time to earn it. It's very powerful, and can be lost with one bad decision.
Let your audience be part of your journey: Anywhere Danny goes he invites his audience to come along.
Ten years to get on CBS Radio: Patience ins a virtue, and it took Danny 10 years to get to where he is. He took advantage of every opportunity he saw.
Time Management Tips: Set a schedule and stick to it. Danny has a full time job, a girlfriend, and his podcast.
Having the right people on your team is essential and keep everything transparent so you are all on the same page.
Danny is real. When Danny says, that's a good question, that's because its a good question. Some people on my show do it just to stroke my ego.
Check out Danny's Commercial on the Discovery Channel
Watch his acceptance speech as he is inducted into the Podcaster's Hall of Fame
Here, Danny made the news by accidentally spilling the beans on the Microsoft release.
In this article, Gamertag radio is mentioned in Forbes magazine.
If you plan on attending Podcast Movement, you can save $40 off your ticket when you use the coupon code sop40.
This is THE podcast event. I will be holding a Q& A session and I am really looking forward to it.
I have a on of people ask me about Podcast Interview Wizard from Jim Edwards. Well I'm going to buy it and play with and let you know what I think. If you want to check it out, go to schoolofpodcasting.com/piw (affiliate link)
I will also be talking about the Cool Cast Player which makes really pretty players for your website
The School of Podcasting is OPEN NOW. Get in before 4/1 (doors close ).
Step by Step tutorials (that are not outdated like the one on the Internet)
Private Facebook group for Networking
Email support for all your podcast questions.
Live Q & A Webinars - ask whatever you want.
Sign up before we close the doors 4/1
I went to Podfest.us a couple of weeks ago and I saw a person do a presentation that offered to help people launch their podcast for $8999. Just for that weekend there was a sale and they would only charge you $3990. This is America and if you can get people to pay for $4,000 for your advice, then GO CAPITALISM. I feel bad for your customers, because without an intimate knowledge of your product, my gut instinct says they over-paid. A couple of episode ago I said the snake-oil sales people are coming, and now I'm here to tell you they are here. So get your boots on cause the poop is getting deep.
I was in a private Facebook group when the owner of the group (the same guy selling a $9,000 podcast course) places this post:
RATE AND REVIEW SWAP - POST YOUR SHOW BELOW (LET'S GET A LONG THREAD GOING)
Is it ok to post your show via iTunes link? and ask for rate and review swaps?
I HIGHLY ENCOURAGE TO DO THIS
something like hey everyone, wanna do rate and review swap?
Here's my show
--show link removed by Dave--
Let me know when you've done it and I'll go do the same. Extra points for screenshots or copy paste of review smile emoticon
WHAT I DON'T ENCOURAGE
'Hey guys check out the most bomb, amazing spectacular show on the planet - insert link. and subscribe please...
Hey guys this week we talk about how we are the real deal, and we discuss it in such an amazing way. ARen't we awesome! - link to youtube.
**Please don't F'ing do this! I am considering kicking you out if you do this more than 1x. and I won't tell you, so don't do it at all.
BEST PRACTICE FOR ASKING FOR RATE AND REVIEWS
"Anyone opne for rate and review swap: here's my show"
"Just left review for TAG PERSON - great show, here's what I wrote - insert message - THEN say - here's my show can you hit me back too"
The people lined up DROVES. The post was growing like a weed. This was like a unicorn. I had heard of them, but had never seen one, and it was depressing. After no less than 20 people I had put in their link I chimed in as asked why we were asking people who had never heard your show to give us a give star review. As always, I'm open to other sides of the story so I asked, "Why are you doing this? If you can't get your audience (who has heard your show) to review it, that is a red flag that your content is not resonating with your audience. Please shed some light on this. He repled:
The idea here is that people can listen, rate, and review and not be stranger. As artists we need a place to be ale to get feedback to share on our show, and this is a thread for people to be able to do that. We are not encouraging people to be strangers here and in a podcasting group it only makes sense to have a place where people can openly asks for reviews and feedback.
There is a place for podcasters to get feedback and share it on your show. It's called your audience. It's called comments on your website, facebook, email, voicemail from people who can help shape your content for the better. They are called YOUR AUDIENCE.
The answer is a lie. They are trying to game the system, jump up the charts, and boost their downloads. I get that. Who doesn't want a bigger audience? Do you remember William Hung from American Idol. This poor kid couldn't sing or dance, but he was so bad we shot him on the charts. William produced an album, and that's the last I heard of him. He doesn't have the talent to remain on that stage.
More and more professional content creators are getting into podcasting (radio people). They have paid their dues, and they have had lots of practice. They have found their voice, and they know what their audience wants. So now when we shoot your inexperienced probably not great podcast to the top of the charts, you look like William Hung. Your audience doesn't stay, and your career is over.
Don't be a Flash in the Pan
Never week Danny Peña will be on the show. He is a hall of fame podcaster who started out on caseete tapes. His main focus is on his audience, and he now works for CBS. He gets paid to play video games because he did the work, listened to his audience, and promoted his show endlessly. He didn't cheat, he didn't cut in line, he didn't spam anyone, and the guy is a rock star in the gaming world. Back in 2005ish Dr. Joe Vitale start podcasting. His first episode was all about him, and how great he was and why you should listen. It did nothing for the listener. he had a huge email list, and he must've sent out an email for people to vote for him on Podcast Alley (this was pre iTunes). They did. Joe went from 0 to the top of the charts. His episode was awful, and the next week he was completely off the charts.
Apple is Not Going to be Happy That Your are Negative Effecting Their Product
By "gaming" the iTunes charts the results are not entirely accurate. Apple went to a lot of work to build the system, and I'm pretty sure they are not going to be happy that you are playing it for the fool.
A recent article focusing on how to get to the to of iTunes New and Noteworthy came out and suggested this:
The article (which I'm purposely not linking to) states, "Fact: Once your show is approved by iTunes, they (Apple) give you an 8-week window to rise to the top in the "New and Noteworthy" categories. This is your best opportunity to strike podcast launch gold." To this I BEG you SHARE YOUR NUMBERS.
I've asked my audience to share their pre, during and post "New and Noteworthy Numbers" and the only people who have had shown that with over 1000 podcasts being added to iTunes each week (www.newmediashow.com) that the impact of New and Noteworthy is not thousands of downloads like it was in the past. If you can show me differently, I would love, love, love to see it.
Set a Date for Your Podcast Launch
I have seen so many people make really bad mistakes because they don't know what's involved with a podcast and they will pick a date. Even if it is six weeks out there is so much that go wrong with:
That to pick a date that you will launch is a pretty risky move. It is better to pick a day that you plan on having everything you need to pick the actual launch day. To this people freak out and state the 8 week rule. This is BS. You have 8 weeks to be NEW, you can be NOTEWORTHY any time.
Use Template to Contact People
The article states to use a personal approach and then states that he uses templates (that you can get if you give him your email list)
Be Ready For Your New and Noteworthy Screen Shot
It then states to be ready to take your screen shot (after bugging everyone you know, and as we have seen above - people you don't know) so you can climb the charts. If you're going to game the system, do it smart. PHOTOSHOP. Now I'm not saying this is a legit strategy, but it takes a lot less time, and nobody can check the history of New and Noteworthy. So if you're going to cheat, cheat smart.
The author states, Back when I launched my show in the summer of 2014, I set my alarm clock for middle-of-the-night and early morning hours. I didn't want to run the risk of missing my moment in the number one spot.
The more I work with podcasters, the more I see a trend. The people who spend hours OBSESSING over stats, don't have impressive numbers. Why? Because instead of obsessing over their audience, they are obsessing over download numbers.
If you obsess over the audience, the stats will come.
The article states ,"The more frequently you release your shows, the more likely you are to stack up downloads, increase your visibility, and maintain your number-one spot in the "New and Noteworthy." The author forgot one important FACT. The Podcasts app STOPS DOWNLOADING your show if you have not listened to the episodes. Most people will not be able to keep up with you firehouse of information and thus the downloads will stop. How often should you publish? Don't ask me, ask your target audience!
The Bottom Line
the more we align ourselves with Scammers, Gamers, Liars, the more we - podcasters as a whole - risk losing our integrity. If our stats are rendered meaningless by the twitter bombers and the Review Swappers, nobody will sponsor our shows. Really? Ever heard of an endorsement deal getting pulled when the celebrity behaves poorly? Exactly, so knock it off.
Scott Johnson Computer Tutor Florida - People WILL download your back catalog
Henry Jasper Turned into a Fan Boy
Henry Jasper is now starting to make money by helping companies with their social media using skills he learned from the School of Podcasting
I appeared on the Starve the Doubts Show with Jared Easley and Dan Franks. Check out Jared's new book. Quit Chasing Influencers
What were the last 5 that Clive from the Future Past Podcast listened to?
Glen The Geek from Horse Radio Network
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This episode first appeared at http://schoolofpodcasting.com/review-swaps-hurting-podcasting/
You will notice that I am in pursuit of people who have been able to make a living with their podcast. Today we interview Jim Harold who does the Paranormal Podcastt and the Campfire Podcast.
In a nutshell, use podcastsconnect.apple.com to submit your podcast to iTunes, but don't mess with anything else in that platform for now (you can really shoot yourself in the foot).
iTunes is somewhat confusing. You submit an iTunes RSS feed to iTunes and in return, they give you a link to your listing in iTunes. iTunes is like a giant phone book of podcasts.
The interesting thing is when someone goes to iTunes and subscribes to your show, iTunes sets the original feed you submitted in their software. This can create confusing.
When you publish a new show it will not show up in the iTunes Store immediately because they have to refreshed your listing. However, anyone who is subscribed to your show gets that show because they are looking at your original feed.
My advice here is to subscribe to your own show. This way when you think there is a problem because your show is not "showing up" in iTunes, check your show using whatever app you use. If the show appears, then it just means the iTunes store has not refreshed your listing yet. Wait at least 24 hours.
Here are some bullet points from our conversation with Jim Harold from the Paranormal Podcast
Jim wanted to be on the radio, but ended up in radio sales.
Jim loved reading about the Paranormal growing up.
He sputtered at the beginning of his show, but his fans wanted more. Why? Because nobody was talking about this like Jim was, and he delivered value.
After 6 months , Jim was offered a sponsorship from Audible, and that helped him get more serious about his show.
Jim has multiple streams of income. He has a plus club (membership site), he has multiple books, and he has advertisers. Jim uses Wishlist member to manage his membership site
Jim's first book was "traditionally" published. It was cool to see it in Barns and Noble, but Jim later purchased the rights to that book and sold it on his own. Check out Jim's books at Amazon.com
Podcasting has opened door for Jim
His podcast grows about 10% every year.
His podcast is named well. It's called the "paranormal podcast." He went with the obvious name for his show. When people Google "Paranormal Podcast' his show comes up.
There is a difference between radio ads and podcast ads.
Jim explains how he feels like he knows me because he listens to my show.
Podcasting advertising has great impact because we care about your audience. Jim has rejected ads that didn't fit his audience, or that he couldn't endorse.
Daniel J Lewis from the Audacity to Podcast
Steve Stewart from SteveStewart.me
Stargate Pioneer from the Gonna Geek Network
Danny Pena from Gamer Tag Radio