How Podcasting Can Transform Your Business: Lessons in Networking and Lead Generation

By Jun6,2024

How Podcasting Can Transform Your Business: Lessons in Networking and Lead Generation written by John Jantsch read more at Duct Tape Marketing

The Duct Tape Marketing Podcast with John Jantsch In this episode of the Duct Tape Marketing Podcast, I interviewed Josh Elledge, a U.S. Navy veteran who launched UpMyInfluence.com to help agencies, consultants, coaches, and other high-ticket B2B service providers skyrocket their sales. He also started SavingsAngel.com which has grossed more than $6 million in sales […]

How Podcasting Can Transform Your Business: Lessons in Networking and Lead Generation written by John Jantsch read more at Duct Tape Marketing

The Duct Tape Marketing Podcast with John Jantsch

The Duct Tape Marketing Podcast with John Jantsch featuring Josh Elledge

In this episode of the Duct Tape Marketing Podcast, I interviewed Josh Elledge, a U.S. Navy veteran who launched UpMyInfluence.com to help agencies, consultants, coaches, and other high-ticket B2B service providers skyrocket their sales. He also started SavingsAngel.com which has grossed more than $6 million in sales with zero paid ads. Josh Elledge is a keynote speaker, writes a syndicated newspaper column to 1.1 million readers, and regularly appears on more than 75 TV stations across the country. 

During our, dare I say Meta conversation, we uncovered the transformative power of podcasting for businesses, focusing on how it can be a game-changer for networking and lead generation. A long time of the duct tape marketing podcast and leader in the industry itself, Elledge loans his experience, providing actionable strategies for how small business owners can leverage podcasting to boost business growth and establish strong industry connections.

 

Key Takeaways

Josh Elledge emphasizes how podcasting makes an age-old powerful tool for networking and lead generation, highlighting the importance of interviewing industry leaders to build valuable relationships. He advises creating valuable, audience-centric content to attract and convert listeners into potential leads, stressing consistency and authenticity. Josh Elledge also shares strategies for monetizing podcasts, including sponsorships and affiliate marketing, tailored to your audience/consumers’ needs to ensure profitability while delivering value.

 

Questions I ask Josh Elledge:

[03:12] Tell us a bit about how you’ve taught people how to use podcasts to build their authority in whatever industry they’re in.

[09:33] How can you use podcasts as a tool for a desired business outcome without sacrificing authenticity?

[16:29] What are the biggest challenges to making podcasts work?

[19:46] How do you think podcasting and B2B sales will look in the next 5 years?

[23:02] Is there someplace you’d like people to connect with you find out more about your work?

 

 

More About Josh Elledge:

 

Like this show? Click on over and give us a review on iTunes, please!

Connect with John Jantsch on LinkedIn

 

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(01:05): Hello and welcome to another episode of the Duct Tape Marketing Podcast. This is John Jantsch. My guest today is Josh Elledge. He’s a US Navy veteran, launched up my comm to help agencies, consultants, coaches, and other high ticket B2B service providers. Skyrocket their sales. He’s also got another, I don’t know, can we call this side project savings angel.com, which has grossed more than 6 million in sales with zero paid ads, and he is a keynote speaker, a syndicated newspaper column to 1.1 million readers and regularly appears on more than 75 TV stations across the country. So Josh, welcome to the show.

Josh (01:44): John, listen, I don’t want to embarrass you, but I just, you’re

John (01:47): Getting great too. You’re getting great at two. Here

Josh (01:48): I go. Here I go. I just want to start right up at the very top and just say, I’m fanboying a little bit right now because your longevity in this space has been just such a fixture for so many great business leaders, including myself. And I want to think particularly back in, I want to say 20 15, 20 16 timeframe. That is when I just really appreciated your voice because that was definitely a period of when I was kind of shifting from one identity to another. And not only just that you were there with a wealth of tactical information, but your integrity was the thing that was just so valuable for me because in a world where I heard a lot of what I would call broey marketing out there that did not resonate with me, yours was one of collaboration of serving in integrity. So I just want to say again, thank you so much for having me. This is great. And so thank you for fostering this conversation here.

John (02:48): Thank you. So there you heard it. Josh called me old on the show today. No, I appreciate that, Josh. Actually, we haven’t done away with the Broey marketing yet. It’s still out there, but we’re doing it one day at a time, aren’t we? Alright, so you have spent up my influence frankly, spends a lot of time helping. Well, it helped you build authority by podcasting, right? And essentially that’s what the business does today. So talk a little bit about how you’ve used and taught people how to use podcasts to build their authority in whatever industry they’re in.

Josh (03:22): Certainly. So it actually started with Savings Angel, my other company, which I launched back in January, 2007. I had no money for advertising, but somehow had convinced a lot of local media outlets to work with me where I would provide content, and it started a lot of radio. And so I was hand coding my own podcast, RSS feeds. I would record my radio segments and then I would just create MP threes, upload into my own server, update this text file. So I guess you could say I’ve been podcasting since 2007, which is quite some time. So I’ve definitely seen the evolution. And here’s John. One thing that I learned very quickly is that podcasting is a great platform for reaching and connecting and building audience. But I think that what most podcasters fail to realize and which most people who are considering starting a podcast don’t quite realize is that podcasts are the ultimate networking platform.

(04:22): And I dare say make friends button. And if you think about what a powerful tool or technology that is, I would just say to my friend who’s listening to our conversation right now, do not sleep on this. Because at the same time, this opportunity is out there in a world that is just dominated with amazing guests who want to connect these exact same people that are appearing as podcast guests and are paying PR firms to get seen on podcasts. And listen, it’s not a high bar to start a podcast. Those in guests are being inundated with spammy, broey, lead gen amateurs, and they hate it. I don’t like it. I don’t like being sold at, I don’t like being treated like a number and a piece of meat. But unfortunately a lot of the lead gen world, that’s how they treat people. They treat them like numbers and they treat them leads. What I found is that if you treat people with in the way that you’d want to be treated golden rule and you just lead with noble intent and generosity and leverage platform, you can build such an amazing network that will be the gift that gives and serves you for the rest of your life. It’s who not how. And your network is truly your network worth today.

John (05:45): So I want to go back to that idea of relationship building. I’ve told people, I actually started my podcast in 2005. I literally recorded them over a phone call with a device that plugged in to a digital recorder. So I love telling the old days stories, but my first book came out in 2007 and two of the primary people that blurbed it were Seth Godin and Guy Kawasaki, everybody, pretty much household names in the marketing world these days. They didn’t know me from anything. I’d never written a book, but I had them on my show to talk about their books. That was the whole goal of it, promote their books. And so then it gave me sort of the permission to turn around and say, Hey, would you do this for me? And I doubt that either of them would’ve even returned my email had we not built that relationship on me doing something for them. And I tell people all the time, if I had two listeners, I would keep doing this show because it lets me get free coaching. It lets me build relationships. It lets me find out stuff I want to know how to do. Whereas if you just sent out emails to people and say, Hey, could we get on a call and see if we have any synergies? Who’s going to respond to that? Right?

Josh (06:57): Yeah, absolutely. And John, I think again, it’s important to underline, again, I mentioned noble intent, generosity, and platform, and I want to make sure that I underline noble intent. So if you hear what I’m talking about and you say That sounds like a great way to pitch people, no, you are already doomed to fail and not only doomed to fail from a business perspective, you’re going to create a lot of enemies. People, again, it’s the same thing. This is no different than let’s say you go to an event and there’s a mixer and you’re hanging out with people.

(07:40): How do you connect with people at an event like that? Chances? Most of us are pretty classy. That’s all you really want to do. I don’t know about you, but I have gotten so much business historically at events at the mixers. I just say, Hey, what do you do? Tell me about that. Oh, that’s really interesting. And then we get to know each other and then I just say, Hey, listen, why don’t we chat sometime? I’d love to see maybe if there’s any collaboration opportunities for us. If I can make any introductions anyway, I can help. Always happy to share ideas and brainstorm. I am open to all of the above outcomes right now. What I find is that if we’re pretty thoughtful about the rooms that we enter and who we spend our time with, and we get really geeky around the type of persona that a potential partner might be like, what’s going on in their life?

(08:28): Who are they? What size company, what decisions are they making? That sort of thing. And that is what we create editorial justification around so that we can ensure that we are stacking the deck with our dream ideal people. And what we usually find, John, is there, our direct engagement opportunities very easily 30, 40% of the time. And a good chunk of those may actually be people that want to engage you based on who they are, who you are. And again, this all begins with noble intent because if you begin with this idea that you’re just going to sell people and that’s your singular focus, people know what you’re doing. There’s never been a time when audiences have been more skeptical of being sold at, and it’s not your fault, it’s not my fault, it’s marketers just in general who have engaged in a lot of bad practices. So consumers have just put their guards up, they just don’t want to be sold at.

John (09:18): So we maybe jumped over. An important point here is that a lot of what your program is about and what you’ve been teaching people is effectively how to use a podcast as a lead generation and network building tool. So I think your point about if somebody goes, oh, that’s it. I’ll start a podcast and I’ll interview people I want to sell to and I’ll get them on my show. I mean, that’s a conclusion, one conclusion somebody could make. So help me understand how you use that tool. Two, it’s effective outcome, but in a much more authentic way.

Josh (09:54): Yeah, absolutely. So a great analogy that I like to use is if your goal were to attract butterflies, and let’s say you’re going to give yourself a handful of months in order to do that, well, you might go grab a butterfly net and then start running up and down the street like a maniac trying to find and catch butterflies. And then you’re going to do that day after day after day after day. Okay? That’s like being caught in the lead gen rat wheel. And particularly if you don’t necessarily enjoy that type of work, I just say if I were forced to engage in activity that I didn’t want to do day after day, I would just assume go get another job. I created my business so that I could do everything that I do based on my values and my integrity so that I can enjoy every day and what I do and how I connect with people.

(10:41): So the solution if you want to attract butterflies is quite simple. And I bet our friend who’s listening to us has probably maybe thought about how would I actually do that? Well, I would suggest you plant a butterfly garden. So what you have to do is you have to lead with, if you want to build a relationship and you’re the one that’s initiating that outreach or initiating that suggestion that this is you and I might be good friends, you cannot lead with an ask. And now unfortunately, that’s what a lot of lead gen people do, or again, it’s very tied to what it is that they want. So in true Go-Giver fashion, you are going to lead in generosity and you are just going to give the market what the market is wanting. Now, I can tell you that this is my background in pr.

(11:33): I can tell you that there is an enormous industry around leaders wanting to be seen and celebrated for what they do. There are great podcast guest agencies out there that do phenomenal work we love because again, they are helping get their guests on great platforms. I am thrilled to share my stage and shine the spotlight on other people. I enjoy doing that. I love letting people know what you do in the world matters. And I want to share your story with my audience now because of that initial opening salvo or kind of opening invitation, well, that is wildly attractive to butterflies. And so they love my garden. So because of that, now we get the time together, true active service and then business adults do. If you and I were on a panel and at an event and we were serving an audience together, and I’m kind of listening to you along the way, you’re listening to me along the way, we’re going to probably jive a little bit.

(12:37): And then at some point after when it’s all done, it’s like, I really like what you guys are doing. Let’s grab coffee sometime and just see if there’s something we should be doing together and then just be open to the possibility. Now, I will tell you this, John, and I’m sure you’ve done this. I buy a lot of my guest books. I hire a lot of my guests. In fact, every contractor or agency that I hire was a podcast guest. I do a lot of business that direction and I do a lot of business the other way. It’s two leaders that like each other are going to work very hard to try to find ways to support one another. That’s what we want to create is an environment where people say, oh, good. Now I have a friend who does what you do. And if you can do that a couple of hundred times, it’s kind of game set match. For many of us that’s really all you need is just 200 meaningful relationships, not another Broey sales funnel.

John (13:34): Yeah, I think the challenge for a lot of people is that is a different point of view. That is a different mindset than a lot of people that are, I need to sell something today. Because what you’re really saying is do something in the world that provides value and you’re going to benefit, you’re going to win. But sometimes that’s hard to put on a spreadsheet.

Josh (13:58): It does, and I empathize with that and I know what it’s like to say, you know what? I got bills that are due in two weeks. I need to get someone to buy. The challenge with that is I think that we are all aware and we’ve been in that environment when we’re in the room with someone and we know that they need us to buy. And I will say that in the sales dynamic, that’s not ideal because salespeople with sales breath, it just like we all smell it. And then it’s just again with savings. Angel, I’ve studied and led on consumer behavior since 2007. That’s what I write my syndicated newspaper column about. And again, consumers have never been more sophisticated, they’ve never been more savvy, and they are just a little bit on guard. So again, we just want to continue to assure our friends, we want to continue to assure the market that our intent is to do good in the world.

(14:51): And generally, John, I trust leaders. They’re either in market or they’re not. So I think that there are some things that we could probably do to improve our sales ability and our sales processes. There obviously are things that we could do to improve our product and that sort of thing, but I don’t know. The market is kind of where the market is. Like if you walked into a room a hundred people and it’s a hundred grand of people and they’ll fit your ICP and that 22% are going to buy, you can go into another room of a hundred different people that are all kind of the same persona and you’re probably going to get about 22% that are going to buy. And you’re going to find that pretty consistent based on the market. We’re not smarter than the market. The market just is what it is.

(15:29): So the number one thing that we can do as business leaders or service providers is we just need more at bats. If you want to drive revenue, you need to talk with more people. In fact, in my presentation, John, I quote you talking about lead gen or as it were, it’s the lifeblood of our business. You need more opportunities. And so again, we just want to create more of these butterfly gardens so that we don’t have to be running up and down the street with a butterfly net. We just have butterflies, all gardened all over the place, and we’re constantly attracting high caliber decision makers and fellow leaders that we want to engage with.

John (16:07): So maybe we haven’t said this directly too, so you teach people to start their own podcast. I mean, I know what they are, but I’d love to hear from you, what are, our listeners would certainly like to hear from you. What are the challenges that you see A lot of, especially you’re talking about maybe a CEO that needs that or wants that exposure, but podcasting, one of the things that stops people from doing it is it feels like a lot of work until you get a rhythm or until you get habits. So what are the biggest challenges to really making this work?

Josh (16:40): Certainly the number. Here’s the reality of statistics and the attrition rate in podcasting. It’s pretty abysmal. More than 90% never make it to episode 50. In fact, I’ve seen NAS stats that are even more dire than that.

John (16:53): So 10. Yeah,

Josh (16:54): It’s pretty dire. I think a lot of people are well intended. They get into podcasting because they’re hoping that they’re going to get visibility. They’re going to get a lot of maybe engagement with that audience. What I’ve learned about podcast listening audiences is they tend to model the behavior of more of a TV viewing audience where it’s usually a little passive. We’re not necessarily clicking on things on our TV screen

John (17:15): While it comes. Yeah, we’re out walking the dog. Right,

Josh (17:19): Exactly. Here’s the good news of this. So again, it’s a very passive media. While people are multitasking, here’s the good news. These are very high quality people that generally listen to podcasts, and I say high quality from just kind of ability to potentially engage with from a business perspective. So we want to be very realistic about that and understand that if you start a podcast, it’s not going to be a whole lot different than if you start a YouTube channel. It is just going to be a grind. So what you have to do is make sure that you have a foolproof business plan and a business model. So you do the business model first so that you know exactly what to expect. And also the contingencies. What happens when you get to episode 20 and you still only have about 35 listens per episode and you feel deflated?

(18:07): What is going to keep you engaged? Well, again, when I look at all of the benefits that podcasting provides, most of them are going to be long-term. Some of them are going to be short-term. And again, what I have found is that your ability to connect with and build relationships with your ideal partners, your ideal influencers or investors or even clients that you might potentially want to work with, there is a significant ability to do that. Because right now, if you have an okay podcast, right, and I’m talking about an interview podcast and you use that to celebrate other people, you are stepping into an environment that for every decent interview show there are hundreds if not thousands of potential guests already. Their supply demand in the podcasting world is insane. It has always been that way. And according to some good friends like Alex over at Pod Match, it’s only gotten bigger. There are so many amazing out there that I just love being of service to and then love exploring to see if there’s any other things that we might be able to do together. Sometimes yes, sometimes no. I’m okay with all of that.

John (19:18): As a marketer at heart, I always try to teach people, look, you’re also producing content which is going to have a lot of use for you down the road, right? You are probably going to get a lot of backlinks out of it because people are going to promote the show because I was on the show mean. So there are many benefits beyond the conversation that you’re having that I think you certainly need to consider as part of it. I think you started to touch on it and time flies, of course, when you’re having fun. But is there a future of podcasting and B2B sales that you think is going to look like something the next five years?

Josh (19:53): Oh God, yeah, absolutely. So the thing that I’m so excited about is my mission is really to help cut down on the B2B spam. I just think it’s so inefficient. I think the stats are not great. 90% of us just don’t engage with spammers right off the top. So that means you’re only capable of even remotely possibly working with about 10% of the market. Then of those 90% that they just don’t engage with spams. If you DM me, I’m probably just not you, John, but if someone just dms cold dms me and spams me, pretty much, it’s an instant block. And it’s not their fault. It’s honestly, I feel badly. But decision makers have to be so protective of their time and attention, and I’m very much in that boat. So you asked about the future of podcasting and whether it’s traditional podcasting or it’s the ability to engage as leaders do.

(20:51): What do leaders do well? Well, if you have a lot of wisdom and knowledge and experience, and I’ve got a lot of wisdom, knowledge, and experience and that wisdom, knowledge, and experience is valuable to an audience, are there ways that we can collaborate together? So again, this may look different in the future, but it’s two humans coming together in service of others. There is a magical dynamic that happens when two people come together in service. There’s just this connective energy that happens like, John, you and I just did something good together. Doesn’t that feel great? And then after that, there’s kind of this high that happens. And a lot of times guests and hosts want to continue that, or at least they should. And if they don’t, it’s like you’re in the room right now with someone that probably knows some good people. You probably know some good people.

(21:40): And here I’ll just say this, most experienced podcasters are really good networkers, or at least they know a lot of people. They are very, sometimes it will feel almost like a whisper network of who they know because it’s not flashy and showy. They’re just quietly building relationships, serving audiences, keeping their head down. That’s generally what I do. So again, however it looks, I think that, again, service together of two leaders is just the fast path. In fact, there would be no up my influence if I wasn’t serving in my local startup community, serving on boards pro bono, working with veteran owned businesses and minority and women owned businesses and helping them just doing pro bono work. And I meet other service-minded leaders. We get to know each other. In fact, it was my very first client was someone that said, Hey, I actually, you’re pretty smart at this.

(22:32): Can you do PR for me? And I’m like, I don’t have a PR company. Let me ask my friend if I’m allowed to do ask a PR professionals, like someone wants to hire me to do pr, is that ethical? Can I do that? And he’s like, yeah, go ahead. And so that’s where up my influence came from. That was the very first version of it is just going out doing good and serve the world. And it will come back to, you will get to a point, this is my final thought. You will get to a point where you will not be able to out give the market. You got to just show up in consistency, got to show up with Noble intent. But again, use those journalism creds as it were, or media creds as it were, a platform cred. And that is the fast bath or the express elevator to increased authority and influence. Just use platform rises to the top, keep associating with other high authority people, and you’ll find that so much faster than all the conventional means of marketing and lead gen and that sort of thing.

John (23:24): Amen. Alright, Josh, I appreciate you taking a few moments to stop by the Duct Tape Marketing Podcast. Why don’t you, is there some place you’d like people to connect with you, find out more about your work?

Josh (23:33): Yeah, absolutely. Certainly if what I’m sharing with you, it resonates with some and it doesn’t resonate with others, I fully acknowledge that if what I’m saying is intriguing and you’re like, some of that emotionally feels good to me, I want to learn more about that. I’ve got some great stats. I’ve got some great quotes from John Jans in a presentation. Listen, I’ve got about an hour and 15 minute long workshop. There’s no gate. I don’t need your email address. I trust you. You’re an adult. If you like it, you’ll find some ways that we could possibly do some stuff together. But you can watch that. That’s a great workshop. It’s our Attraction mastery workshop. And I’ll go into this with a lot more stats and quotes and that sort of thing. And I think, again, as marketers, as professional business leaders, this is pretty valuable in info because I go into the state or the state of the union on lead gen right now, and it’s based on, I’ve talked with a few thousand people by now. I’m concluding a lot of VPs of sales of what they’re experiencing. But yeah, so here’s the web address that you want to go to. So you can watch that. It’s just www.upmyinfluence.com, and then you’ll see the button where you can watch that. And again, I don’t need your email address and I don’t need you to opt in on anything. I trust you. Again, that’s another thing too, is start treating your customers and people like adults, and they’ll let you know if they like it.

John (24:54): Awesome. Well, we’ll have that in the show notes as well. So Josh, I appreciate you again, showing up and spending some time with us. Hopefully we’ll run into you soon, one of these days out there on the road.

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