💯 💯 💯 "There are over 1 billion Instagram accounts, there are over 600 million blogs, and over 37 million YouTube channels, all of which are growing each and every day. You know how many podcasts are out there? Under 2 million."
EP 40: Podcasting has grown substantially in the past decade, and if you are a creative entrepreneur, it has the power to separate your brand from others. The question is, what is holding you back? If you have something to share, my goal is to help you find the incentive you need to start your show.
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Michael Der 0:02
You're listening to Artrepreneurs, a podcast that inspires photographers and visual artists to live their best creative lives. My name is Michael Der and I am a full time photographer with nearly 10 years of experience in the freelancing world. And I'm sitting down with an amazing community of visual artists to talk about process, business, and the lessons that have helped them grow. So let's get to it. Artrepreneurs starts right now.
All right, what is up everybody? Welcome to another episode here at Artrepreneurs thrilled to have you tuning in and supporting this show. Now as I was set to record this week's episode on how to pay quarterly taxes. The Internet notified me that today is actually international podcast day, which is super exciting because no one loves a hashtag holiday quite like yours truly arbitrary or not. The second I discovered that today was a celebration of podcasts. I quickly switch topics and started jotting down all the reasons why podcasting has benefited me over the last few years. And I know there are several of you out there who have played around with the idea of creating your own podcast either for your own branding purposes, or simply because it feels a creative and a connective need. So today, I thought I'd share with you my top 10 reasons to start a podcast now.
Number one popularity. So the sheer demand for podcast content is consistently growing over half the US population, which is about 55% of Americans are actively listening to podcasts, the average podcast listener subscribes to six shows tuning into around seven episodes per week, folks, those are just the averages, which means some people are going to double or triple those numbers. So if you don't think you can make an impact in this space, I beg you to reconsider. Here are a few more 2021 statistics brought to us by the folks at podcast. hosting.org 104 million people listen to podcasts at least every single month. 68 million people listen to podcasts every single week, and 16 million people in the US classify themselves as avid podcast fans. So keep those numbers in mind if you're telling yourself that people are tired of podcasts.
Reason number two, the pond is still small. So there's this myth that podcasting has become so trendy, that there's no point to getting started now because all the space has taken up. And I can't argue that you might feel very much like a tiny fish in a great big ocean. But I do want to leave you with a little bit of context here. Right now there are over 1 billion Instagram accounts, there are over 600 million blogs, and over 37 million YouTube channels, all of which are growing each and every day. You know how many podcasts are out there under 2 million. So think about that to stand out in the YouTube Space means you're facing nearly 20 times the competition of a podcaster. So this notion that you're late to the party that you'll never get your audience because the market is too saturated just isn't true. For one, you're not really competing against every single podcast out there, just like you're not competing against the other 1 billion Instagram accounts, too. There are way too many podcasts out there that are actually inactive people start podcasts, they lose interest in maintaining it and they let it fade into podcasting heaven. So the true number of active podcasts is way less than 2 million. You may still be a small fish, but I don't think you're in the ocean. I think you're in a pond. It may not feel like it but people starting podcasting in 2021 are actually entering the space early.
Reason number three, ease comparatively you can actually get your podcasts up and running on a shoestring budget quick, fast and in a hurry. Now I'm not suggesting that you do rush into it. But the point is, it can be done by almost anyone don't have money. Well, you can easily record podcast without any professional equipment, you can find free hosting free interview platforms and market without any advertising dollars. And if you're not technically savvy, don't worry editing audio in my opinion is 10 times easier than editing video and recording your episodes and the interviews can be done with apps and platforms that make it so easy, even the technically illiterate can produce quality content. On the other hand, producing a YouTube channel that stands out requires professional equipment costs and the skills to operate cameras, lighting, audio and editing, all of which are greater time sucks for arguably less return.
Reason number four retention. So retention rates are way longer on podcast than almost any other platform quoting Pat Flynn, host of the Smart Passive Income blog and podcast. The audience consumption time for the following platforms are as follows blogs about five to 10 minutes, YouTube videos about three to five minutes and lastly social media posts and you guessed it somewhere about one minute or under depending on the platform. That's not a lot of attention. your content is sustaining podcast though. 93% of listeners listen to all or most of each episode. So if you have a 30 minute show or a 90 minute episode, chances are your listeners are staying on your platform for quite a while. We're all in a content creator era and one of the most deflating aspects of being a creator is feeling like your work is receiving diminishing returns. I'm not promising you that podcasting is going to yield tremendous returns for you. But comparatively to all the other platforms that you might already be exerting lots of effort into, this might be your best route.
Reason number five, promotion. Now not only do you set yourself up as an authority figure in your niche promoting you as a leader or a creative, but you can also promote other things that you want to draw attention to. You can promote your own products, your own services, your own educational plans. You can also just as easily promote other people's products or services, which can create reciprocity and good karma within your industry. But on top of all of that you have the ability to promote your messages. If you're a creative chances are you have very strong opinions on certain principles and practices and this is your opportunity to give back to your audience and impart what you've learned and what you believe to be foundationally important ideas and philosophies. And even if you don't have any interest in toeing that line and fear of being didactic or preachy in your content, and you'd rather produce conversational discussions without any agenda, you have that power to it is simply a different form of promotion, you are effectively creating the show that you want to hear for yourself, which you in turn feel it will benefit others as well moreso in the form of entertainment than information, and guess what, both styles have succeeded and will continue to succeed in this space.
Reason number six community. So spend a little bit of time talking about the practical reasons to start a podcast. But I'd be remiss if I didn't mention some of the more personal reasons why it's beneficial to do so by far, one of the most common responses that you're gonna see from podcasters on why they spent so much time producing and hosting the shows that they do is because of the community they get to engage with. So whether it's the specific art that you create, or the specific business model that you run, it can at times feel like a very lonely process. And so by hosting a podcast, you create more opportunities to engage with like minded people that you can either inspire or be inspired by. Now for me over the last seven or so years, I've met and talked with at least a couple of 100 different photographers around the country through a variety of workshops, events, and social media. And a couple years ago, I discovered that some of the conversations felt like this amazing, inspiring experience, while others would feel very uninspired and sometimes very flat. So what was the difference? wasn't my personality? Was it their personality? Was it my skill level? Was it their skill level, I was interested in why some conversations were driving me forward, and others were pulling me down. And for myself, I realized that it wasn't just about the art that I was always interested in. It was also about the business. So I discovered that it wasn't just photographers that I like talking to. It was really self employed photographers that I like talking to those were the connective tissue for me to find my tribe. And so I am more enthused talking to someone who freelances full time, who runs their own business, who is or is aspiring to be an entrepreneur. And I've effectively built the show around that community. It's why the majority of my guests on the show are self employed creatives. It's why the show is called entrepreneurs, and why it's pluralized not secularized. I wanted to build a community that I had a hard time finding for myself. And so my message is, if you want to be in that space with your tribe, why not create the platform yourself?
Reason number seven, education. So whether you decide to create a podcast that is tutorial based, conversational based, or maybe something in the form of an Audio Diary, dictating your experiences, I believe you will invariably learn more about your craft than had you done nothing at all. For example, if I want to do an episode on model releases, I have to question everything I know about model releases and study it again, like it's my first time, thereby making me more informed to inform all of you, when I bring a guest on my responsibility is to learn as much as I can about that person's expertise. So I can ask the questions that you want the answers to, and when you seek out people to come on your show that are not only great at what they do, but also great at connecting you to that subject matter. Because those are two very different things, then you really get to learn. That's the biggest thrill for me. It's not when I hit Publish does not want to get a review on Apple, it's when someone I bring on tells me something that I had never thought of before. Or they've clarified something for me that I had long been confused by, those are the eureka moments that I love, and anyone who produces a podcast will echo the same exact joy. And if I'm merely doing a memoir styled episode, much like I did in Episode 16, about my bout with depression. by revisiting and investigating all the nuances of my emotions. During that time, I was able to discover and educate myself on the mental health aspects that helped me in the process. Bottom line, if you produce a podcast, even if it's for entertainment reasons, you're gonna learn so much about yourself and your craft.
Reason number eight impact. Now we all want to be known for our artistic merit, and maybe it's in your future to be regarded in the upper echelon of your field. Or maybe it's not. And I don't think there's any shame in not becoming a world class photographer. But I do think there's a shame. If you don't leave a mark somewhere, your lessons, your discussions, even your questions can leave an impact, and you never know when or to whom your words will leave a mark. So merely being the person who sets up a community forum that others are afraid to initiate. Even if your podcast was casual or comedic in nature, it can strengthen your legacy moreso than your art or your accomplishments. Now I want to leave you with a quick little tribute to a world class photographer. His name is Tim Mentawai. he photographed I don't know, maybe a half dozen Madden covers and countless other projects that seem to exceed the standards of commercial work. They always seem to be more artistic than that. And unfortunately, he passed away several years ago, in his bout with cancer. I had a handful of conversations with him nothing overly profound, but his impact on me was far greater than the quality of work that he left behind. He was very kind, he was very generous. And he seemed overly invested in my development and my ability to execute my vision not being elitist, or annoyed by any of the questions that I was throwing at his way. And had he been half the photographer he was, I still would have remembered his impact. Now I'm not suggesting that creating a podcast is on the level of Tim's words of kindness to me. But honestly, I want to make the point that what you do for others can be more impactful than what you do for yourself. And Tim is simply one of the many individuals who have taught me that notion to pay it forward, that impact goes beyond just your images.
Reason, nine confidence. So the great benefit of producing your show is that it sort of forces you to get over your fears of public speaking and delivering your message. Now you would think that it would only worsen your insecurities. And maybe for some, it actually could, I can only say for myself that I've gotten over this awkwardness of how my voice sounds, my bad speaking habits that would normally make my English teachers cringe. And I've just gained this confidence in my ability to not only communicate, but really connect with others. And the reason why my confidence has risen in this space, is because I study and improve on my mistakes. Now, I'm not going to say that I'll ever be a naturally great storyteller. I can't say I'll ever be that charismatic, or intellectually stimulating. But from where I started to where I am now is quite a big jump. And a lot of that has to do with simply getting in the reps of doing a podcast for three years. Not only was I practicing the speaking aspects on the weekly, but I was also crafting my writing so that it packs as much information as possible without putting people to sleep. And I learned so much from my early interviews on what I liked what I didn't like that it has, I believe helped me walk a guest through the conversation that makes them feel more comfortable and confident to respond with more insightful answers than ever before. Now to illustrate this point, I'm going to tell you one of my all time favorite stories about my experience podcasting. So when I reach out to people to bring on the show, it's usually a mixture of creatives that I know and others that I'm talking to for the first time. And for those who I am just meeting I scheduled a pre interview run through that discusses the concept of the show. And I let them know what the process is ultimately going to be like, what the questions are going to be how I'm going to lead them in that direction. And earlier this year, I got to do a pre interview run through with a guest who was telling me some of the other photography podcast that he had recently listened to. And he pointed out one show in particular that he thought was so terrible in its presentation, he said, The questions were awful. The length of the episode was way too long, the conversation was all over the map, and the host had nothing to course correct it. And it wasn't just one episode, folks, it was like three or four different episodes that he cited before he said I couldn't listen to it anymore. I just it was just a terrible show. So little did he know that that show he was referring to was my previous podcast, I was the host of that show, he was basically telling me to my face, how terrible I was. And I could feel the blood rush from my face in complete embarrassment. And I had to wonder whether or not I should tell him that in fact, it was me that he was criticizing or just let it lie. And I gently did. I told him that was my previous podcast. And I could tell he felt maybe just a little bit bad. But he didn't backtrack, he just said, I would never have guessed that was you because the episodes I've listened to on this new show entrepreneurs is a completely different experience. The interviews you've done recently made me confident to do the show, I wouldn't have signed up otherwise. So I don't know if there's a better piece of evidence that I have gotten better at this that I've learned from my previous mistakes. Now I'm not saying by any stretch, I am great at what I do. I'm simply saying that the sheer reps have made me better over time. And so I'm very grateful that podcasting has allowed me to improve on the skills that were really non existent before, which has led to a greater amount of confidence in my communication skills, not just through this podcast, but with people from all walks of life.
Reason number 10. podcasting is fun. So there's not much to read into this, folks. I think in most walks of life outside of maybe boxing or MMA fighting, when you get your ass kicked. Participating in an activity is always going to be more fun than merely consuming it as a bystander. If you're a photographer, making pictures is more fun than looking at them on Instagram. Same thing here talking with photographers is more fun than just listening to photographers. And this whole process has really become a fun experience from start to finish. Whether it's writing, recording, editing, publishing, getting the feedback, doing the giveaways, it's all been a huge amount of fun. And beyond that, if you have the ability to change somebody's life just a little bit. It is beyond fulfilling. Now podcasting isn't going to be for everyone. If you have nothing to say if you hate talking to people, if you're strapped for time and you demand that you get a huge financial return, then Okay, podcasting may not be for you. But if you have something to share, if you have something to say or if you simply want to connect with people who do have things to say then Heck yes. Start your podcasts. Would it have been better to start your podcast in 2008? Sure, I guess so. But you've already missed that boat. The best next time is right now.
So that is going to wrap up today's episode, folks. I hope that gave you some inspiration to start your podcast and I look forward to supporting your show. Happy International podcast day, folks. Thank you for joining me, and I'll see you next week.
Hey everybody, this is Michael Der thank you so much for making it all the way to the end of the episode. I hope you'll follow tag and engage with us on our Instagram account at Artrepreneurspod. We've also launched our website Artrepreneurspod.com. It is the central hub where you can sign up for our newsletter, read our blog posts, send us voicemails, and even access discounts from our amazing affiliates. It's also the perfect spot to shout out Artrepreneurs with what would be an immensely appreciated five star rating and review. And if you're feeling extra generous, you can even make a small donation that's really going to help accelerate the growth of this podcast. But no matter what you do, folks, I just want to say thank you so much for supporting this program. There are a lot of great photography podcasts out there and I'm just grateful to have gained your trust even for a moment. take care everyone, and See you next week.
Transcribed by https://otter.ai