Listen to the full interview here ( 21:55 minutes)
Listening to the smart agency master class, and I am your host, Jason Swank, who, yes, I put a dukes of Hazzard Horn on a mustang. I know it’s probably sacrilegious, but it was pretty cool and it got people out of the way. Now, before we jump into the show, I have a great guest, Tom, who was going to go over really how to get on people’s podcasts and why you really need to really leverage this particular platform in order to drive new agency business. But before we jump in, I want to ask you if you want to really systemize your agency and make it easier to run and scale to the next level. I want you to check out the agency playbook. It’s really made up of proven system strategies and processes that will show you what you need to do in order to grow and scale your agency to the next level. So if you want to check it out, go to Jason Swank.com/playbook. That’s Jason Swenk.com/playbook. Alright Tom, are
you there? I have Jason and I’m just typing through Amazon seen where I can get a dukes of hazard to horn for myself. There you go. It’s pretty easy. I mean it’s. And literally it was awesome, man. It was seven air horns with an air compressor that we rigged and we rigged it to the cigarette lighter in the car, which was pretty cool. That said object though. Yes. I am a redneck in disguise, a from New York. So, but uh, enough about me. Tom, tell us a little bit about yourself. Sure. I’m an engineer. I always call myself an inbound engineer. I was trained to. My first job out of college was running a nuclear power plants and I’ve always said I’ve run nuclear power plants and I’ve run small businesses. And one of them was easy because it came with an instruction manual. And so I’ve always looked at that and said, now how can we build systems?
How can we build processes, how can we tune those in order to get the maximum out foot for the minimum input? And we really stumbled on something over the last few years that has worked so great at getting our word out there and getting the good traffic and leads. Cool. And so let’s go ahead and jump right into it. So what’s the secret sauce in order to get our name out there and generate leads? Sure. You know, the biggest thing we’ve found is that know marketing at its heart is starting a conversation with somebody because there’d be an ideal customer. And so we’re always looking what’s the best place to do that? And few years ago, you know, we noticed that blogs weren’t working as much. We had to figure out a different way of doing content and podcasts were taking off and we looked at it and thought, boy, doing a podcast would be great for ourselves or our clients.
But we also realized that doing your own podcast is a lot of work. You know, anybody that says doing a podcast is easy, has either never done it or never done it well. So we looked at it from a standpoint of more like guest blogging. You know, you can either build up your own blog or you can get on somebody else’s blog where they’ve got an established audience and you can borrow their trust authority and speak to it that way. And so we really used being a guest on targeted podcasts as content for our inbound engine, for our content marketing, and we were just amazed by the amount of traffic we got from it, the quality of leads and then to evergreen portion of it. So for us, this is really the focus on everything we do is growing our business based on being podcast guest.
Gotcha. That’s awesome. But I do have it because I actually think doing a podcast is easy, so maybe I’m doing it bad.
I will say the great ones make it look easy. But man, there’s, you know, compared to being a guest where you come on and get to talk, you know, podcasters, you know, even if you farm it out, you know, there’s a lot of production work and you know, even after you do the podcast, that’s 20 percent of it. The other 80 percent is really getting the promotion out there.
Yeah, I guess I like the promotion so you know, in creating the actual content, it’s easy for me once you have the right system. I mean literally, you know, as you witnessed, I just did the prerecording right before and then all I do is send it off and then everybody else makes me look smart. Right. And they’re are the brilliant ones because if they can make me look smart. Right. So. Well awesome. Well, so I totally agree with you about, you know, podcasting is so much more powerful than blogging. Right. You know, because there’s so many big companies out there and I’m not going to name any. I like literally they rose to the ranks through their inbound in their blogging, but they kinda started dwindling in their marketing just because they were just doing blogging and you know, I, I really love getting on other people’s podcasts as well because like you said, they’re putting you as the expert and I’ve gotten so much business from being on other people’s podcasts. It’s unbelievable. What kind of results have you guys seen?
Well, what we saw is, you know, comparing it to what we were using before, so you know, a good blog is going to convert one to two percent from visitors to leads what we were seeing with ourselves and our clients, we were seeing visitor to lead of 25 percent, 50 percent, even sometimes 75 percent. And people say that’s unbelievable. And it’s like, well no, not really because if somebody has listened to your story, got to know, like, and trust you. And they come, they come ready to engage. They’re not just, you know, to kick the tires and look around like they might be from the paid advertising or even organic and finding a blog. So we’ve seen that. And then other things is just the time to close. And that whole sales cycle, you know, if somebody has listened to you for awhile, either on your own podcast or another podcast, you know, they’ve gotten 30, 45 minutes of education about you and your company.
So that whole sales process can be much quicker on that too. And you know, we used to talk about how do you break through the noise and Jason, I was going out to social media marketing world this February and it just struck me, there is no more breaking through the noise, you know, I was on the plane and the guy next to me could have been my ideal customer, but he had his headphones on the entire time, so short of pulling off his headphones to break through the noise. The only way I was gonna talk to him was to get in on the conversation that he was listening to. And the more I see more people that are listening to podcasts and instead of trying to start your own conversation, might as well just get in there on the conversation that’s going on. Was I sitting by you coming back?
It was probably me because I’m like, don’t talk to me. I’m listening. All right. So well how do you get the most results out of, you know, being interviewed because you know, like, like where do you start? Yeah. And you know, you’ve got to take a strategic look at this, you know. And I always say the interview is the fuel that drives it, and if all you have is fuel, you know, you’ll get a flash, you’ll get some heat out of it, but you’ll never get work out of it. It’s almost like if you just throw a blog up and there’s no calls to action, there’s no followup, there’s no promotion, you’re not going to get anything out of it. So really it’s the same principles that we’ve always used, you know, make sure that you’re talking to the right audience. Do they have your ideal buyer persona there, you know, have you qualified that?
And then at that point it’s just the same things in content, you know, go out there, give incredible value. You know, I always like the way rand Fishkin says that, that the best way to sell something is don’t sell anything. Just earned their awareness, respect and trust of those who might buy. And so really that’s what you’re trying to do. And then make it easy for them to go from being a listener to a visitor. And one of the things in all of our testing that we found is that sometimes it’s important to not only, you know, give offers and sometimes we talk about lead bait, but, and give something that could be a visitor bait, you know, if you talking about the six ways to get booked on a podcast, you know, don’t just list them all off now, nobody’s going to write them down, they won’t remember it, but just say, hey, there’s an infographic if you’re interested, go here.
And sometimes those visual things, we got one client that was a professional photographer and it was great because every time he talked he could refer to a picture or a video or something that he had. And from that standpoint, it really engages people. So really think of it as the entire process. And then, you know, once you get people to know, like, and trust you, you know, what can you do to add more value, add more service. We’ll have some people that you know, will say the next step is, you know, come to my site, listen to my podcast, go ahead and, you know, be part of a Webinar, something like that, but really just to earn that trust and that knowledge and use it as an entire thing. So we really just use podcast interviews as content and then also just thinking of all the different ways that you can repurpose this. Right? So you take an interview, transcribe it, now you can make a blog out of it or a couple blogs. You can highlight the different 140 characters of genius in there and now you’ve got different tweets. So there’s a lot of different ways that you can use the content. And for most people, a podcast interview was an easy way to make content. Oh yeah, definitely.
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What I tell everybody as well as as if you can ask questions
and say like especially for agency owners and say, guys, after we go over these amazing results, if you want to know more about these amazing results, I’ve listed out everything about this particular case study that we did and you can go here and get it right and it’s just. It’s amazing how many people go over there or when I’m interviewed, a lot of times I actually just make up a name like for the past couple months I’ve been just using a page that the only way people can get to it is if I say it on a podcast and they listened to the whole damn thing. So it’s Jason Swenk.com/who and I’m like, you know, and you see a goofy picture of me going while who you made it and then it shows my podcasts and a couple of lead magnets that can actually help people out. But you know, it’s about doing something different.
The other thing that I like about getting on other people’s shows is it’s a way to connect with other people as well that could put you in, you know, that you can network with. Right. You know, I mean, I’ve had people on my show that, you know, I’ve had, you know, had a Zappos on or you know, all kinds of different things that normally if I just reach out to them, they’d be like, no know. And it’s, uh, it’s really a game changing. And the other thing I really like about it and you know, I actually, I don’t know if a lot of people know, but I actually went into podcasting kind of kicking and screaming because I was like, my only experience with a podcast, and this may be a lot of you, well hopefully not a lot of you because you’re listening to this podcast, but. Well I guess if you’re listening to it, watching the little screen go on the website, you could be like me. That’s what I thought it was. I didn’t know you could actually do it on your phone. It’s amazing. Like how much bigger my numbers are on the podcast downloads than actual video views. Have you seen that as well?
So. And I think it’s because you can consume it the way you want to. You know, Jason, I’ll admit it’s weird talking to you right now because you sound so much different than you do on the podcast because I listened at one point five or two point. Oh. So it gives people the power that are listening to listen when they want. At the speed they want to go back and really it’s, I think there’s no more intimate discussion that you can have. It’s almost like when we’re talking here, somebody’s word, a booth, having breakfast and somebody listening in from next door, the next booth over. Because like when we’re on video. Oh, okay. Well you never know. Is that take number one or take number five. Are they reading from teleprompters? Now? This is. This is just raw and I think that’s the reason that you get so much more trust and better conversions and you were so right there when you talked about sending them to a dedicated page afterwards.
It just don’t send them to your homepage. That’s some testing that we did and had huge differences because like most people that listen to Jason Swank, they know what your look like. They’ve heard of you. When you hear Tom Schwab, you have no idea. So when you come to the site, you know, it’s like the question of am I on the right site? Who’s this guy? So we took it from an ecommerce perspective and hey, let’s send them to, you know, a dedicated page. So interview valet.com forward slash Jason and where do they see them? They see the host picture, they see the podcast artwork there. So those are those trust seals and then from there you can go down and whatever you talked about during the podcast and that helped the conversion rates so much and really it helped the user experience because I guarantee you there’s somebody that’s listening to this, you know, that day it’s released, but there’s somebody right now at 2019 that’s listening to this for the first time and they’re like, this is great.
Well if I just send them to the homepage, I guarantee you in three years they’re not going to see the same thing on the homepage. And then the other thing it does is that now you can figure out where people came from. So you can start putting that analytics to it and saying what podcasts, what listeners are driving the most traffic, leads and customers. So with that, you can really get the metrics in there to get better and better with it. Totally agree. And what about, I mean, all right, so how do you go about, once you identify, obviously kind of the first step is saying I want to be interviewed. The next is kind of identifying the podcasts you want to be on. I mean is there a process that you guys go about doing that? Yeah, we go through a, it’s a litmus test of different factors that we look at.
And so the first one is always, you know, your ultimate goal is to get in front of the most ideal customers. So with that you’re looking at two things. You’re looking at the size of the podcast, but you’re also looking at the density of the ideal listeners. So it’s a combination of the two and I’ve always given the example. I’ve been on podcasts before that, you know, had 50,000 downloads and from that I got two dozen leads and I was thrilled with that. I was on another podcast that, you know, the host apologize because she got 300 downloads per episode, but I’m like, it’s my ideal customers. I’ll do it. Well, Jason, from that I got 150 leads and sold $25,000 worth of product. So I always, you know, say there’s more fish in the ocean than there are in a barrel, but boy fishing in a barrel can be really, really productive.
Yeah. So look at that and then also look, and the truth is that most podcasts die within the first 10 episodes and so with that, look at a podcast that’s been around. This is evergreen content, so you don’t want to be episode seven on a podcast that never sees. Number eight, nobody will ever find it. They’ll stop paying the lips and bill or whatever and it will be lost. We also look at show notes. Those are so important because it’s an easy way for people to find you to find out more information. And from an Seo perspective, we’ve been amazed by it. You know, those backlinks that come back to your site, they’re all natural backlinks directed back there. And then the final thing we always look at this is more for our clients is some podcasts, you know, have an explicit rating on it and that’s saying that it’s good or bad, but for some brands they just don’t want to be associated with that. They don’t want, you know, profanity in the episode before or after. You know, if your marketing and your niche is, you know, nonprofit Christian charities, yeah, you might not want to be on a podcast like that, so you might not want to be on mine.
And the thing is, is that if that’s like that it probably your listeners or your ideal customers won’t be on that too. So we go through all of that and we rank them and say, you know, what’s the, the ranking of this? And then just start going down very strategically. You know, you can always start at the top. Sometimes you have to work your way up as a proof source from one to the other, but just doing it very strategically. And once again, like I said, looking at the data, so a lot of podcast hosts will say, oh Tom, we would love to have you back on. And for them it could be a win. But I always say, well, you know, I’m booked out typically, usually about 90 days. Let me get back to you. And one of the things I look at is the analytics and if that podcast was a base hit, I’ll always look and say, well, what did I do wrong?
What could we have changed? You know, maybe it’s worth going back, but I tell you what, if that’s a home run, I will find a recent to get back on that podcast. So really using that and using it like a system or we’ve had a lot of people that said, I’ve been on, you know, half dozen podcasts and they never got me any business. That’s like almost saying, well I wrote a couple half dozen blogs and I never got any business out of it. Well, what was your lead magnet? What was your call to action? What was your follow up? What was your promotion? And when they look and say I didn’t have any of that and say, mom, it’s not a problem in the fuel, it’s just you’ve got an engine problem on that. And so that’s one of the things that we’ve really tested and we think we’ve optimized the process on it or it could be the car, right? It could be boring.
I mean, you know, has
got to provide value, but you also got to be entertaining. I mean, the reason why we put explicit on our podcast is, well, first off, I don’t want to censor ourselves and I feel that it stands out a little bit more and I want to separate myself from all those boring fuckers out there anyway. Right. It’s consistent with the brand. Exactly. Yeah. Right. Because no one can imitate you. That’s why I like podcasting. Hell, that’s why
I like videos as well, right? Because anybody can steal your copy. Right. And then kind of morphed it into their own. I mean, I remember having. I remember there used to be some websites out there like copyscape or something. And literally we would find people just copy copier identical website. So like this go around, I was like, we’re doing things audio or doing things video. I mean it’s going to be very hard. Like if they copy it. Perfect. That just helps me out a little bit more
from that standpoint. You’re so right, because your job there is to be entertaining. I always tell people, you know, when you go on a podcast, you know your job is not to sell. Your job is to make the host look like a genius for inviting you on and introduced into to his audience because you’re offering so much value, so much value to the audience and everything. So that should be ultimately your goal on that. And you know, there’s never. There’s always an audience for authenticity. So be yourself. If they resonate with that, then that’s your ideal customer. If they don’t, that’s okay. You know, you only want to attract, you know, with people that you can thrill and thrill you.
Exactly. So in closing, what are some of the biggest mistakes that you see people making when they come on a podcast?
Probably the biggest one is not being prepared and in so many different ways. I mean not being prepared with audio equipment and I’ve got a checklist that I go through each and every time in the military they talk about checklists being written in blood and rather use somebody else’s blood than your own. You know, all the little mistakes that I’ve made over time, you know, not checking my microphone and speaking into a $500 heil microphone and getting picked up by the, a built in microphone on the computer, you know, not turning off your dropbox sync in the middle of the interview. Everything’s going great. You know, your va sent you a video and your connection goes to crap. You know, things like that. So being prepared on that. Also being prepared, just like you were getting up to talk to a crowd and audience of speaker, you wouldn’t walk in and have no idea what the conferences about.
Who the audience is, all of those things you know you should know about the host, you should know about the podcast. You should know about the audience that you’re talking to in the military. We used to use the joke only kids and clowns like to be surprised which one do I look like? So just make sure that you’re always prepared. And I would say that is the biggest one probably close up to that is just trying to go for numbers and just saying I want to be on this great big podcast will he’s, chances are you’ve got one shot at that and make sure you’re ready for it. You know, think about Broadway. I mean they’ve got great place, but they don’t start them out right there on Broadway. They take them to a couple different places, work it out so when they’ve got their big opening day that they make the most out of it. So from that standpoint, I think if you’ve got a strategy, if you got a plan behind it and you work at, you can have amazing success, you know, talking directly to your ideal customer as a podcast guest. Awesome.
Well this has been awesome. So, uh, how can people reach you?
Yeah. Jay, you can find me on social media, but the easiest place is just interview valet.com forward slash Jason and everything we talked about will be here. I’ll throw that checklist stuff that I talked about, that info graphic on how to get booked as a podcast guest and then there’s even a book that’s coming out that talks about the entire strategy. You know, it’s not magic. It’s just a process that we’ve really tested.
We openly share it with everybody. Awesome man. Well thanks so much for coming on. Thank you. Jason.
What another great episode and if you don’t want to miss out on any of the episodes going forward, need to go to Jason Swenk.com/agency insights. This is where I’m going to make sure you are all my list and you get all the best strategies, all the best tools, videos, ask Wang everything so you don’t miss out. I want you to make sure you go there because you’re going to join over 18,000 agency owners just like you that are wanting to get better strategy. So make sure you go to JasonSwenk.com/agency insights. Now until now, right.