Listen to the full interview here ( 29:09 minutes)
Your listening to the growth experts podcast, so if you’re looking to 10 x your business by learning proven growth strategies, you’re in the right place. During my interviews with top ceos, entrepreneurs, and marketers, I dig deep to uncover the real strategies, hacks, and tools to help you achieve your goals. And I’m your host, Dennis Brown. And in the last episode saying Grunt Padre shares how terminus is helping companies use account based marketing to land their ideal customers faster.
Hey everyone. This week we’re giving away a one year subscription to push link.com. P U S H e l y n k. it’s valued at about 600 bucks. Push link allows you to send push notifications to your subscribers on almost any platform. The fact is push notifications get about 10 times the response rate when compared to traditional email. For a chance to win, subscribe to the podcast. Then take a quick snapshot or picture showing you’re subscribed and text it to seven, one, six, two, one eight, eight, nine, eight, one, or you can email it to growth experts at Yahoo Dot com. Now let’s get back to the show. Welcome everybody and we have another amazing guest today. His name is Tom Schwab. I met him a couple of years ago and he is the founder of interview Valet. Where are they help small businesses, entrepreneurs, authors, and speakers get featured on leading podcasts that their prospects are already listening to, so tom shows them exactly how to turn listeners into leads.
So pay close attention. Welcome to the show, Tom Dentist. I have thrilled to be here and talking about podcasts is sort of a Abeta discussion, but to anybody that listens to podcast will instantly understand the power of it. No, thank you so, so much for being here. I asked you on the show number one, you’re fantastic. Guy. Number two, you guys do a great job at interview valet, but number three, I have used podcasts myself as a way to build an audience, generate leads and to even get clients. So I’m a huge fan. Right before I started my podcast, I was a listener and then I was a guest and now I have my own podcast, so I guess I’ve hit for the whole cycle now, but if you could do me a huge favor, tell us a little bit more about what you have going on over there at interview valet.
Sure. And I think anybody that’s listening to this, I’d say almost any company, your biggest problem is that your obscure, you know, there’s people that you could help, you’ve got a product or a service that could help people, but they just don’t know about you. So really the question is, is how do you get connected with your ideal customer? And there’s a lot of people that talk about, well, you break through the noise and Dennis, I’m sorry, I think a lot of us are just adding to the noise. It’s like, you know, the yelling did a football game. Nobody’s hearing you. So really we looked at it and said, how can you get in on the conversation that your ideal customers are already listening to? So like you said, there’s multiple ways to do that. One of them is to start your own podcast and you know anybody that says doing a podcast as easy as either never done it or never done it.
Well, my hat’s off to you, Dennis, and I’ll be the first one to say, show Dennis that you’ll love his work and give them a positive rating and review, but for people like me that are a little bit more lazier, we look at it and say, how do you get the maximum return on investment? Well, being a guest on other people’s podcasts and really it sort of comes out of the experience that we had decades ago or last decade with guest blogs. Right? You could write a blog on your own site and a few people that listened to or read it or you could put it on something like the Huffington Post or Forbes or INC, wherever those big sites were and get their audience and really that’s what we’re trying to do here and it comes from an inbound marketing perspective. That’s my background of how you can take other people’s audience, other people’s listeners and turned them into your leads and your customers and it’s something we’ve done over the last four years, tested it, refined it, and a really, it’s a, it’s a marketing system that you can use to really go from obscure to acclaimed in front of your ideal customers.
That’s perfect. So how does interview Valet make money? I mean, is it a subscription? Do you pay per podcast? I mean, how can you unpack that for me a little bit? Sure. And more transparent in everything we do. We work for our clients. So our clients are, our customers right there, the talent they pay us and we work at on a, um, a per podcast interview base. Uh, so it’s not like a PR agency where we’ve got to retain or to try now we actually get paid for the deliverables. That being said, we work with the podcast host. I mean, but everything we do for the podcast host is free, right? So there’s no conflict of interest. You know, he’d go into a real estate deal, there’s the seller’s agent, a buyer’s agent. There’s no doubt of WHO’s working for who. So we always put our clients in the best interests first.
So like for authors, a lot of times, uh, you know, the major publishers will say, Hey, get us on 12 interviews the week before the book launches, get us on 12 the week after, so we could do like a launch package there. For most people, they just want that steady stream of leads of customers, of backlinks. So with that, they’ll say, hey, I’d like to do two interviews a month or are four interviews. And really the way we set it up is we take care of all the work, you know, the, the prospect in the pitching, the preparation, you’ve got to do the performance. And then we do the inbound marketing stuff afterwards. So with that, you know, if somebody’s doing one interview a month, or excuse me, one interview a week, they’re pretty much carbon out 45 minutes to an hour to just focus on this marketing channel.
So it’s a done for you service where you go out and do all the work. They just show up and do the interview. Exactly. Perfect. Perfect. Okay. So about how many customers do you have or how many interviews have you done, if you want to frame it in some way, shape or form Gimme Gimme idea size. Yeah. So currently we’ve got about 85 customers, so we’re doing probably about 300 interviews a month with those. We’ve got a US space team of 10 people. So uh, there, there 10 people that are working with the podcast or working with the clients and we’re continually growing that. But uh, we focus on three verticals and it’s not so much where our customers are, but where their ideal clients are. So those verticals, our business, that’s our biggest one. Faith in Christianity and then health, nutrition and wellness. Okay, great.
So can you share an example of how maybe one year clients went from obscurity into being known and maybe turn that into an Roi by getting on the right podcasts? Sure. One, a mutual friend of ours, Aaron Walker, he was one of our first clients, right? Here’s a, here’s a guy that’s got great stories, great wisdom. He’s known in Nashville, Tennessee, but you know, outside Nashville, he’s pretty obscure. Uh, you know, he, he ran into the realms of Dave Ramsey’s a close associate of his Dan Miller, but once you went outside of Nashville, he was obscure. So with that we started to get them on podcasts and podcasts and interviews where he could tell his story, people get to don’t know, like, and trust him. And early on his goal was, hey, he wanted to get some, some one on one business coaching clients. And that happened very quickly and then he raised his prices and then he got more and he’s like, I really want to serve these people.
So he started masterminds. Currently he’s got 10 paid mastermind, 10 paid masterminds. He’s got his one on one coaching clients. He’s launched a book from podcasts. So that’s a way to do that. I love working with accountants because they know their numbers. Another client we’ve got is Craig Cody, Craig’s ex police officer. In New York City and now he’s an accountant and he works a lot with people either be in a part time cfo for their business or helping them with tax planning. And he started with us, oh, about 18 months ago. And it was able to go out there and you know, tell his story and tell how he had helped people. And it was amazing because, you know, when you start to work in more of the professional services, you’re not selling a widget, right? It’s not a product or service. Ultimately people are buying trust in you.
So they want to know who you are, who your heart is, why you do something, who you help. And it’s almost like that. Say it’s a podcast is almost like a, a 30 to 45 minutes sales call where they get to know you. And so I’m Craig, you know, he keeps all of his numbers. God love them. At the one year point he came back to me and he’s like, hey, check out these numbers. He got a 600 percent return on investment from podcast or interview marketing. And uh, at what that was, was it 12 months, the next quarter it had risen to 900 percent and I just talked to him the other day at 18 months he was at 1200 percent and that’s just actual dollars there. He wasn’t factoring in future sales because for him, you know, most clients are around for, for multiple years and he just keeps asking how can you get me on more podcasts because he realizes that his limit to growth is really how many people have, is ideal customers know about him.
Perfect. Yeah, that’s exactly. That was kind of my experience. You know, I was a little bit skeptical when I first started of how it was going to convert into leads and prospects and eventually clients. And when I first started doing it, you know, the first few that we made a little bit of it moved the needle a little bit, but no revenue came out of it. But I kept doing it and I kept doing it and I stuck to the plan and then all of a sudden it was like the dam broke loose and all of a sudden I had this big, you know, bunch of people that wanted to work with me. And I was like. And the only thing that I was really doing at that point early on, I was really doing a lot of podcasting. Right? That’s what I was doing.
That was the primary form. So, you know, I think, you know, one of the takeaways that I have from it is that if you think you’re going to go out there and just do one or two podcasts and you’re going to start generating business, the odds of that are not very good. It’s got to be something that’s sustainable, something that has a strategy behind it. And it’s not just a one off. Would you agree? Time? Very much so. And it’s a strategy, right? People always ask what strategy works the best? Whichever one you work, you know, if you bounce around, and I’m going to spend this week, be a, an expert on twitter. And next week I’m going to give that up and then go be an expert on linkedin and bounce from place to place. You’ll never get any traction. So this is a strategy and it builds upon itself.
You know, we’ve got clients that are out three years now. They still get traffic, leads and customers from interviews. They did, you know, three years ago, we had a gentleman that did a, a virtual book launch and he called it his blitz creek. He went out there and got on 40 podcasts, interviews in the matter of about two months. And we helped them do that. He was everywhere. People didn’t know who he was at the beginning, but after they heard them on a couple different ones, he’s like, they said, wow, you know, I’ve got to get this book. He, he’s everywhere. Everyone’s talking about this. So, um, really it’s, it’s a strategy and some people are even using it for an Seo perspective, right? Because every podcast you’re on, we’ll get a link, a guarantee, uh, when this goes live, Dennis is going to link back to interview valet and we’re going to get the Seo value from it.
So some people that are starting new companies or new sites, they’re just saying, wow, not only can I get exposure, but I can help my search engine rankings also. Yeah, there’s all kinds of ancillary benefits there for sure. And then as we got to go off into too much of a tangent I see in the near future audio being more contextual and I think search engines are obviously going to be able to create some context to that and that’ll add a whole nother element to the Seo game. What’d you agree? Very much. So the other thing too is that it is like a, it’s like when I read a book now I’ll say, well I read a book up. Honestly, I listened to it on audible. So it’s so easy to switch mediums. So for like me, if you told me I had to read a blog post, it would be a homework assignment as far as sitting down with Dennis and talking here.
This is fun. I can do this all day long. So a lot. What I’ll do is I’ll take the interview, I’ll transcribe that and now you’ve got blog posts out of it, you’ve got tweets out of it and you can repurpose that so you can make it in any way that’s most comfortable for you. And then repurpose it so that it’s most comfortable for your ideal customer. Yeah, perfect. And I agree with you, you know, writing for me, I’ve done a lot of it over the last three, four or five years and I can tell you it’s a chore. It’s hard work for me, but putting together a video, a facebook live or doing audio like this, it just flows so much better. And then the next thing you know is you have this big block of content that you can do almost anything you want with a multipurpose.
So, so listen, before the show, you know, I hear you on all kinds of podcasts yourself. I mean you’ve been on some of the biggest podcasts out there and you know, before the show you shared with me, you’ve been on over a thousand podcasts. Is that true? That’s true. A thousand podcasts. So set aside from being a guest on podcasts. What else is working for interview valet today to get new clients, critical business relationships. And let me unpack that a little bit. There was a term that was first introduced to me by a client bill. Troy wrote a book called quicksand and what he talks about is those relationships that you have that can drive you business and I think that’s the same way that you know, our grandparents built businesses and that our grandchildren’s build businesses. So it’s like I said before that our biggest problem is that were obscure.
All of our ideal customers don’t know us, but focusing on those key business relationships. And that could be with a podcast host, you know, who I get to talk to here. It could be going to to live meetings at building those relationships because as we break down our business and I’m transparent at all this stuff, about a third of our customers come from here and be on a podcast. About a third of them come from podcast hosts who like, man, you know, you should use podcast to grow your business. Let me introduce you to Tom. And then about a third of them come from agencies, Pr Agencies, marketing agencies that want to use podcast interview marketing for their clients. So one of the things we focus on is building those critical business relationships. So for us it’s with podcasters and agencies that could deliver us, could introduce us to not just one client but multiple clients was basically setting up like an inbound referral sources and all these different niches.
Right? So for example, podcasting, you know, if you have specific business contacts you, you said you have a couple of different verticals, Christianity and a couple of others. So you would have strategic relationships there where they’re already entertaining those people and they see value in use. So they would refer them to you or introduce you. Exactly the sort of, as you described it there, it’s the same thing that we’re doing with podcast, right? You’ve got an audience that I would love to talk to, so let’s work with that. So that’s why we come on as a guest on a podcast, but in the same way if you run a business like, um, we work a lot with authors, so if you’ve got a publishing business and you’ve got all these great authors put no way to get the book out there. Well let’s talk. Let’s work together on this because it, it helps everybody.
Okay, great. So knowing what you know now, right? You started this business four years ago now, I think you said a yes four years ago. Right? And when you first started this year, background was not in podcasting. It wasn’t in setting up interviews, you know, you were, you were just a smart guy and you had this idea. And so knowing what you know now, what would you do different if you were to start again today? That is a great question and it really struck me from reading a book and actually talking with an author, looking at this as a new category. There’s a book out there called play bigger. Christopher lochhead is one of the coauthors on it and in there they talk about category design, not brand design and that nobody wants something that’s a little bit better, right? If you’re just a little bit better than the next person, you’re always competing.
The world doesn’t need a copy of anything and the focus is on how can we bring something new to the world, how can we bring something different? And I think at the beginning that was scary, you know, how can I, you know, I could say that, well, we’re a little bit like a PR agency. We’re a little bit like a booking agency. We’re a little bit like a marketing agency and it took a lot of courage to say no, what we’re doing is something different. We’re different than them. We do podcasts there to view marketing and that stands out so much more and I think looking back on my life, I wish I would have done that more and I think other people need to do that. You don’t need to be better. You need to be different. You need to be who you are and proudly say, this is what we do.
And when people come to us and say, well, could you do this also, you know, could you help me make my website? And I’m like, I’m sure we could do that. But that’s an are, you know, maybe our zone of competency or zone of greatness. Now podcasts are to be marketing is our zone of genius. We own that, uh, where the category king in that and that’s the only thing we do. Perfect. Okay, great. So what are some, I know that going on a podcast for people who have never been on there before can sometimes be intimidating. Right? And so talk to me a little bit about some of the biggest mistakes that guests make when they go on a podcast. I laugh at this one because with a thousand podcast interviews, I know all the mistakes and I know I’m probably personally and there’s a checklist that’s from 5,000 interviews that, uh, all the mistakes that have been made.
I’ll be happily share that with everybody here, but, um, some of them is, I, I’d say the biggest overarching one is the equipment first, right? You have to sound professional. Nobody’s going to accept bad audio. If it sounds like you’re calling in from a bathroom stall, how can you be an expert? I’d say that’s, you know, that’s the things that people are conscious of. But I’d say the overriding thing is how can you add value, right? Your goal on being on a podcast is not to sell anything, right? Podcasts are an awful place for infomercials, but there a great place for people to get to know, like, and trust you. So what we always tell our clients is your goal is to go on there on a podcast and make the host look like a genius for introducing you to the audience. So I think just that whole mindset thing of putting yourself that I am here to serve.
So how can I serve by showing up on time? How can I serve by sounding great, how can I serve by offering special offers, promoting it after the episode, just starting to look at it. And you know, Gary Vaynerchuk always talks about Jab, Jab, Jab, right hook. I probably missed a couple of jabs in there, but I look at it as give, give, give, give, ask, and most of the time you keep giving and then people start asking, how can I work with you? Perfect. Yeah, that’s awesome. So you know, you distinguish yourself. I mean after doing a little bit of research and knowing you for a little while, you know, there’s a difference to being just a guest on a podcast getting booked on a podcast, right? You know, if you have a little bit of time in a little bit of creativity, you can do that yourself.
Right? But you know, the key is in my experiences that those listeners, you need to have a strategy for converting those listeners into leads into customers. So you guys have a little bit different strategy than some of the other companies out there from my, you know, just from my research. Can you tell us a little bit about the best way to convert those listeners into actual leads? Dennis, this is so important here because so many people will ask me, well, how do I get on a podcast? And I’m like, that’s a stupid question, right? Because that’s not the goal. If you want better answers, you’ve got to ask better questions. And really the question is, how can I use podcast interviews to grow my business? You know, there’s 400,000 podcasts out there. You could probably get on one this afternoon, but it’s probably not one that you want to be on.
So really have to look at it from a holistic strategy and we call it podcast or interview marketing. It’s sort of like inbound marketing meets podcasts. And so really we look at that is, you know, getting the interview, that’s the fuel. The interview was the fuel, but you need an engine to put that into, to get results. Now, I’ll admit when I started, I’d get out of podcasts and like, this is great. It was an ego stroke because, you know, I, I tell my story, I, I, I get on there, thousands of people are going to hear me, but they never did anything. So one of the things that we’ve worked in tested, I’m an engineer by degree, so I’ve always been into testing and refining. We’ve really looked at podcast interview marketing is a six step process and if you miss any of these, these chances are you’re not gonna get any good results with it.
You know, the first one is prospecting. You gotta find the right podcast to be on. The next one is the pitching. You know, you’ve got gotTa, you’ve got to get that podcast host to say yes. And, uh, that’s the second step. The third step is the preparation. You’d never stepped on a big stage without being prepared and the same way you wouldn’t do that on a podcast interview. Now the third one is the only step you can’t outsource, and that’s the performance. And while our clients do that, we coached them on the, um, uh, the best practices. And now the last two steps. This is sort of where the inbound marketing comes and I’ll, I’ll pull behind the curtain here. So you’ve got to give people a reason to go from being passive listeners to active visitors. So you can talk about different things on the podcast I mentioned before, that checklist that we use with all of our clients.
That would be a great way for people to get that. There’s a infographic that I have on the nine secrets to get on your, on your first podcast. So what you do there is you say, okay, if you want those things right, I can’t give them to you or explain all of them here on the podcast, but if you go to interview valet.com and then send them to a dedicated with welcome page. So this one would be like interview valet.com forward slash growth experts than everything that Dennis and I talked about will be there and all those resources. So that’s so important to move people from being a passive listener, to enact a visitor, and I hear so many people on podcasts and interviews, they’ll say, you know, how can people get in touch with you? And they start giving their phone number. They start giving their, their linkedin, their twitter.
It’s like, don’t you realize that people are multitasking, they’re never going to remember all of this. Give them one place to go to, and then the final step and really turning podcast interviews into results is, is promoting it. I’m amazed when I see the people will be on a podcast interview and then they don’t do anything with it. There’s so many easy ways to repurpose it, to promote it on social media out there. This is a media appearance and you should treat it as such. You know what I like about your strategy with the interview valet.com forward slash growth experts, right? What I like about that strategy is two things. Number one, you know you can speak directly to that audience so you can literally customize that landing page and give them a greeting of, hey, welcome growth experts, right? So can speak directly to them and I’m assuming that’s part of your strategy.
I know you well enough by now. I know that’s how you work, right? And not only that, okay, here’s totally behind the curtain. When you go there, you have no idea what Tom Schwab looks like. You have no idea what interview valleys website looks like, but I know that there’s a person that you know and it’s. His name is Dennis Brown. So the first thing you get there, you’re going to see a picture of Dennis and you’re going to see the podcast artwork. It’s almost like a trust seal from ecommerce and our testing showed that when you did that, it cut down bounce rates. I like half. The other thing is you can attribute the traffic now, right? So I know if somebody hits that page, the only way they did it was from this podcast. And the other thing is, you know, we’re recording this in 2018.
I guarantee you there’s somebody in 2020 right now that’s listening to it for the first time and they’re like, that’s cool, I’ve got to go check that out. Well, I can guarantee you my homepage is going to change over the next two years. So if I made some offer there and they went to it and it wasn’t there anymore, that traffic could be lost. Uh, so there’s so many ways that, uh, that, that welcome pages we call it is so important to actually turning passive listeners into active customers. Yeah, and you, you took the words right out of my mouth, you know, when it comes to tracking and lead attribution, right? Which is so difficult these days, right? Lead attribution is a real challenge when you’re doing such a diverse group of marketing. But with this, you can attribute that directly. You can tag it on the way in, you know exactly where it came from.
When it converts. Now you can figure out your Roi for your, for example, your, that channel, that investment in podcasting, you know, doing the podcasting service. So, so yeah. So that’s awesome. That’s perfect. So we’re going to wrap up here in a minute, but other than interview valet, what’s your favorite growth tool or software these days? Uh, it’s got to be linkedin now too, man, after my own heart. Well, you taught me how to use it and I, I’ve got to learn even more because it is so much untapped potential there. To me, the richness of your life is the richness of your relationships and I don’t mean how much money you have in your bank bank account. That’s just a byproduct of that. And you know, I live in Kalamazoo, Michigan. If I can do podcast interviews and connect with people around the world on linkedin through Kalamazoo, you can do it any place.
And to me it’s just a, it’s an amazing tool to connect with people, to help serve people. And I like it because it’s not, you know, it’s not pictures of here’s what I had for breakfast. It’s still professional and uh, I just love that tool and I’m using it more and more with that. You know, today if you’re ignorant or isolated, boy, it’s by choice. Yeah. I love to hear that because I think linkedin has changed a lot, particularly over the last year, so for anybody who’s curious, you really need to take a second look at it. If you looked at it a few years ago and you just weren’t quite getting those results, I’m a huge, huge fan of Linkedin as this time and I think you will be too if you give it a second chance. So again, we’re pretty much going to wrap up for today time, but how about you share one piece of parting guidance and then let everyone know how they can connect with you and learn a little bit more about interview valet.
Well, thank you Dennis, and you know if you’re listening to this podcast, you understand the power of this medium, right? You understand that it’s growing and in the future, the you know that your ideal customers are going to be listening to podcasts. The only question is are they going to listen to you or your competitor, and that’s something that you can decide yourself, right? You could either be a podcast host, you could be a podcast guest. You could do both of those, but you know, things that could help people and today it is so easy to go out there and share that and it’s fun. It builds your network. That’s not a mystery on how it does. No. I say, um, all we do, it’s not magic. I wrote a book called podcast guest profits where I put it out there everywhere on how we do it all.
I’ll do an interview. Valet is really, we do it for you. You know, a podcast guest profits is, is the recipe book if you want. And I’ll tell you what, Dennis, we’ve talked firstname.lastname@example.org growth experts. So I’ll put that, you know the checklist that I mentioned. I’ll put nailed that infographic on the nine steps to get on your first podcast and if anybody wants the book podcast guests profits, there’s a free download. I’ll just put it there. You can get the electronic version if you really want to buy it on Amazon, you can, but I give away more of those than anything because I really believe that podcast interview marketing is such a powerful tool. And that in a few years people will be looking at and going, talking about facebook marketing, uh, you know, social media, marketing, email marketing, but podcast interview marketing will be in there too. So now’s your chance to get in out of the ground floor. I agree. Time. I agree wholeheartedly. Listen, my friend, thank you so much for spending the time today and I’m sure we’ll be talking again soon. Thank you, Dennis.
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