Marketing at its heart is starting a conversation with someone who could be an ideal customer. Drawing on his engineering, corporate, and e-commerce inbound marketing experience, Tom Schwab is an expert on building online businesses. Tom is the author of Podcast Guest Profits: Grow your business with a targeted interview strategy, the founder of Interview Valet, and the category king of podcast interview marketing. He helps thought leaders, coaches, authors, speaker, and emerging brands get featured on leading podcasts their ideal prospects are already listening to, and then helps them to turn listeners into customers. Tom shares his insights on how potential customers are using the internet to find solutions to their problems. Tom speaks on how podcast interview marketing can be used to reach targeted audiences and convert listeners into customers.
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Growing Your Audience Through Podcast Interview Marketing with Tom Schwab
I’m feeling incredibly blessed at this moment. I’m a little tired. It’s one of those moments where I realized I didn’t give myself enough sleep. We had a three-day long speaker training at our home and I am recovering from that. If you’ve ever been to a training or a seminar you know how much energy gets generated. I don’t know whether you’ve ever led one of those, I know a lot of people are pivoting into that space of either wanting to be speakers, wanting to do TEDx Talks, wanting to sometimes even create coaching businesses all that thing. What’s going on in those events at least from a leadership standpoint is that you’re holding a container. You’re holding a sacred space for people to have the breakthrough that they came for and for them to get the learning and for something positive to occur. That holding space process is exhausting, but it’s a blessing. It’s divine and there’s a lot of divineness in it. You’ve got to take good care of yourself and I preach this. I’m calling myself out at the moment that I did take pretty good care of myself from time to time, but I need to create even more focus on the self-care piece. Resilience is important. I am owning that.
At this moment, I am aware and I’m incredibly grateful for that awareness. As well as for the opportunity to speak with someone and to introduce you to a friend, somebody I’ve come to start working with. I love this guy. I love his energy. I love what he’s doing in the world. Hopefully, you’re having a little quiet time for yourself when it comes to that area of self-care. That you’re using this show and other shows as a vehicle, as a tool for you to take care of yourself, whether it’s to relax and listen to somebody else’s voice. Hopefully, there’s some new awareness that you can put into action, things that you come aware of and then put into action in your life that makes things even that much better than they already are.
Tom Schwab knows how to build an online business. Many of you I know are either in an online business space or you’re pivoting into that space. Marketing at its heart is starting a conversation with someone who could be an ideal customer. Drawing on his engineering corporate and eCommerce inbound marketing experience, Tom helps thought leaders, coaches, authors, speakers and even folks create emerging brands get featured on leading podcasts, which have their ideal prospects. The people who are already listening to shows, who are talking about things that those folks are also wanting to attract as in new clients, etc. He helps to turn those listeners into customers. That’s the bottom line. That’s the most important thing. We are finding that not only is a podcast one of the most fun things in the world to do, but it is a state-of-the-art tool for marketing. We’re going to talk a little bit about that as well because this is everybody’s ability and it’s not a difficult one either. Everybody has the ability to become a broadcaster. Everybody has the ability to have an impact in the world beyond their job or their day job. You could call it a side hustle of sorts and it’s an incredible tool for marketing.
One of the things that Tom does is that he helps people to either get featured on podcasts that have their ideal client as one of the listeners to that podcast and he also helps people to get on podcasts. He works with folks who already have a message and want to get on other people’s shows. He helps people who have shows attract great folks to those shows to speak to their audience. Tom Schwab, welcome to the show.
Adam, I am thrilled to be here.
Tom, tell us a little bit about yourself. I know I’ve just given a bit of a very brief overview of your bio. What’s something that’s not in the bio that you would love for people to know about you?
I have lived a blessed life. I grew up in the suburbs of Chicago. By the time I was seventeen years old, I had never been more than 150 miles away from home. By the grace of God and a clerical error, I got into the US Naval Academy and that changed my world. Within a year, I had been around the world. I had been exposed to so many new people, so many new ideas. My world had changed. I never wanted to go back there. As I look back at how big my world was then compared to what it is now, it’s just a fraction of that. The tools that we have now, for you and me to be talking thousands of miles away, we wouldn’t have dreamed of this as kids. There’s no better time to be alive. I’m grateful. I pinch myself every morning waking up and thinking I would not have dreamed of this a decade ago or when I was a kid.
This is a pinch-me moment. It’s not necessarily what folks might think as in, “Great, we get to be playing in this arena this way. Podcasting is exciting. It’s fun. There is all that excitement around it.” That’s not what I mean. Every moment that we’re consciously aware and aware of something that we’re grateful for is a pinch-me moment all by itself.
I always try putting things in perspective. Whatever problem you have looks huge when you’re facing it but somebody pointed out to me and I always told myself this. For me, a bad day is when the internet goes down for five minutes and it shuts my whole plans off. A bad day for my grandfather was when he buried a child. I am blessed.
We definitely can blow things out of proportion relative to different time and space, a different context for sure. Let’s dig into a little bit of your story. What will be fun for our audience is to understand the medium of podcasting and how it plays in your own pivot story. Where is that podcast medium going do you see? What’s the next pivot for that or the opportunity that people have to utilize this medium as a way to either create a megaphone for their brand, for their message and the brand that they’ve yet to create, yet to get clear on but want to? Things are definitely moving in the direction of more entrepreneurial pursuits whether it’s on the side. People doing these side hustles or creating these things in the evening or on the weekends, etc. It’s definitely a move toward personal freedom, a move out of the centralized management of the workforce and of human resources and talent into a more decentralized free market space.
One of the words you used there was a megaphone. In some ways, that’s the problem with the world. Many people are trying to use megaphones and it adds to the noise. A lot of people will talk about, “How do I break through the noise?” The problem is that most of the time it’s adding to the noise. If Apple and Coke have megaphones and you’ve got a megaphone, I guarantee you, your megaphone will never drown theirs out. I look at it and say, “I don’t want to try breaking through the noise.” The question is, “How can I get in on the conversation?” While the world has gotten bigger and bigger, it’s also gotten smaller and smaller. We have the ability to talk to a billion people, but we also have the ability to talk to thousands or tens of thousands of people one-on-one. That’s what makes podcasting effective it’s because it is an intimate conversation. It is that one-on-one conversation.
I was flying out to California to speak at an event and the gentleman next to me could have been my best customer in the world, but I never knew it. I could never break through the noise because he had earbuds in the entire flight. It would have been rude for me to break through the noise and rip the headphones off and say, “Do you want to listen to me?” If I could have gotten in on that conversation that he gave his full attention to, that’s where the power was. That’s where podcasting is going. When you talk about the pivot, we’re seeing this all along because we talk podcasting. My two youngest daughters are 18 and 21 and I ask them, “What’s the pod stand for in podcasting?” They smiled and rolled their eyes. They’re like, “I don’t know dad. What’s the pod stand for?” They’ve never known a world with an iPod. They don’t remember the times where you had to plug it in, download it, get the cable and sync the MP3s. To them, it’s just on-demand radio and that’s where it’s going. It’s not so much the label. It’s how people are consuming the content. Sometimes podcasts are picked up by SiriusXM. Satellite radio can be a podcast.
I was on a podcast and a couple of buddies from Arizona called me and said, “I didn’t realize you were in town,” and I called them back and said, “Why did you think I was in Tucson?” They were like, “We heard you on The Morning Drive and figured you were in town.” It was actually a podcast that I’d recorded six months before they got picked up on local radio. It’s interesting how everything is merging together. We’re on a podcast but if somebody sees this as a video on YouTube, that’s still a podcast. If they see the video put up on Facebook, is that still a podcast? I don’t think it matters as much as marketing at its heart is starting a conversation with someone that could be an ideal customer. You and I can create this in whatever medium is easiest for them and they can consume it in whatever medium is best for them.
Thank you for the distinctions there. Our company is called More Love Media and we’ve delivered a program called More Love Marketing, which the essence of it is to meet people where they are and then not leave them behind, meet them where they are and then not abandon them. Do the work it takes to develop relationships. It’s about building relationships. It’s about being in a relational context versus a transactional one. Something that’s transformational versus transactional and building relationships is not easy. It takes time. It takes commitment. It takes on some level, at least from our standpoint, a commitment not to abandon people either just because they don’t buy from you.
We don’t buy from you when you ask them to, demand that they do, call them to action or any of that other old paradigm language around it. You’re adding a distinction there which is the word conversation, which is fantastic. People that you will converse with are people you are developing a relationship with it. It doesn’t have to be the relationship where you take people home to meet your family. That’s not necessarily the ones that you’re going to end up at their table for Thanksgiving. It’s a relationship nonetheless, it’s a connection nonetheless. That does start in the area of communication of how we converse with one another.
I was amazed by the relationship that you can build online over podcasting. We had a tragedy in Kalamazoo, Michigan. A very sick individual executed ten people and it happened on a Saturday night. I woke up on Sunday and my phone had all these texts and Facebook messages from people that I had never met in real life. People who had heard me on a podcast, people that I had been a guest on their podcast saying, “Prayers for you and your family. Hope everything is okay,” and I’m waking up scrolling through this and thinking, “What are they talking about?” It wasn’t until I walked downstairs, and my wife was watching the television and told me what happened. It was weird because there were people that heard Kalamazoo, had heard me, had talked with me and we’ve never met in real life but they were the first ones to reach out. It wasn’t high school friends. It wasn’t family members. It was people. I was like, “I might not know how tall you are because I’ve never seen you in real life,” but there was enough of a relationship there that caused people to take action. That makes the world a much better place.”
It’s a big world and it’s also small. It is in many ways a one-to-one. That’s the context we’re in. If you can’t develop a conversation on a one-to-one basis, how can you possibly develop a meaningful conversation one on a thousand? It doesn’t work. In our space, we get a lot of people that want to play a bigger game and we’re all for that. Yet at the same time, you also have to know it’s both. It’s the ability to create a meaningful connection with one person is the same context or the same process that you would create a meaningful connection with a thousand. It does start at the heart level. Share with us a little bit about how it is that you got into the podcast space. I imagine that was a pivot all by itself. We’ll take that journey from that point to a place where I would love to have folks know a little bit more about how you see the landscape of the podcast now. What you’ve seen as opportunities and where those opportunities might be in the future.
My background is inbound marketing, using content to attract, engage and delight. My eCommerce company was one of the first case studies, the HubSpot, which is the big inbound marketing company used. In 2014, one of the things I noticed is that blogs weren’t working nearly as well as they used to. Blogs had become saturated. I had been helping a couple of friends that I was in a mastermind to grow their digital marketing. One of the things that I hypothesized on was that we used to use blogs and guest blogging to supercharge it. Instead of me putting a blog on my site and having it be read by three people, one of them being my mom, I was like, “Why don’t we put it on Huffington Post or Wall Street Journal? Tap into that known audience. Get to know, like and trust. Get the backlinks and everything that went along with that.” I thought, “Could you use podcast interviews that same way?” We tested it and I was blown away.
The conversion rates were 25 times higher than blogs. The traffic was immediate. People were saying the sales were closing quicker. At first I thought, “It’s a personality. It’s a fluke. It’s a niche.” I’m an engineer at heart so it’s like, “Let’s figure this out and disprove it.” What we found over testing that for about eighteen months and refining it is that it really is a process. To use that, know, like and trust that you can gain from there to move people from being a passive listener to an active visitor to your site and an engaged lead. This is not art. It’s not magic. It’s a marketing system. I believe that podcast interview marketing will be just as big as Facebook marketing or email marketing in five years. We’re seeing that some of the bigger brands are starting to use this because they realize that they’ve got the same problem that the small companies have. There’s a lot of noise out there and how are they going to break through that?
How is it that you pivoted out of the engineering space and got into that? Were there some steps in between that led you down that path?
Going from the pivot there, I got out of the Navy and pivoted out of that. When I did that, my dad called me a fool. He was like, “Stay in the Navy for another fifteen years you can retire,” and I was like, “The world is changing.” Peace had broken out when I got out. The Soviet Union had collapsed. I went into the corporate world and I wanted to get in the sales side. That’s when my dad called me a darn fool. He was like, “How can you take a strict-commission job?” Every time I saw that the world was changing, I wanted to change with that. It’s the same thing with blogs. I saw that blogs were getting saturated. There were millions and millions of blogs. People weren’t listening or reading them nearly as much.
The strategy still worked. Using content to attract, engage and delight people but it’s time to pivot and find out what the new medium that people are focused on with that. That audio was the most intimate form of communication even more than video. In video, you’re not sure if its teleprompters, if it’s the first take if it’s the fifth take. With podcasting and where it’s going, it’s more authentic dialogue. The best podcasts are just two of us talking. It’s like listening in on a conversation. If the two of us were sitting at Denny’s having breakfast, a podcast is like sitting in the next booth over listening to two interesting people. It would be rude to turn around and look at them and rude to get in on the conversation. You just want to sit there and listen to it. It’s authentic, real and people are who they are and that’s where you’re seeing podcasting going.
You’re saying that podcasting is like eavesdropping. Is it like wiretapping?
Maybe it’s a little bit of the voyeurism in there too. You’re seeing more podcasts going to that authentic dialogue. I’ve been on over 1,000 podcast interviews. For a while, the big thing was to ask every guest the same five or six questions. Every guest would give the same five or six canned answers. It was painful at times. I can remember being asked a question and thinking, “If I could answer this that I just killed my wife and her bloody body is at my feet,” and they would have answered, “That’s great, Tom,” and gone on to the next question. It’s like we’re not even listening here. You’re going off your script and I’m going off my script. Nobody likes that. It’s that authentic dialogue. That’s where people learn. That’s where you’re inspired. That’s where conversation happens.
What’s inspiring you beyond what you’ve said already about the future for this medium? There’s no question that everything in business will find its way back to marketing. If you don’t understand and aren’t working on a greater understanding of your marketing, the way in which you market and how effectively you communicate with the marketplace then you’re going to get left behind. There’s almost no chance you’ll be able to succeed on a sustainable level.
The thing I am most excited about is there’s an old line that marketers can F up everything. Marketers will ruin everything. When billboards started, people would drive to see the story. They put up so many billboards that it got to be sight pollution. Remember when you got an email and it said, “You’ve got mail.” Marketers figured out a way to turn that into spam. Banner ads used to be helpful and then we stopped watching them. Whatever we create, marketers can destroy it. What I’m seeing with podcasts are different. It’s truly the nice guys that are surviving in podcasting. If you look at all of the top podcasters, it’s hard to be a jerk on a podcast day in, day out for that amount of time or to be a jerk and try to hide it. It’s going to come out. People are more authentic on that.
I agree with the latter. I don’t know if I agree with the former. People do show up in many ways exactly how they are. It’s a question of reading between the lines because you’re right. Over time, the truth about someone, you feel it. Whether you could point to something and say, “They’ve done this or they’ve done that,” isn’t the point but what feeling do you get from them? Do you get a sense that this is a person who is real? That’s where scripting flies in the face of some of the podcasters out there that do work from a script or do work from a very set and rigid way of organizing their show.
Structure is important. It might be helpful to create some distinction around that. Structure is important and yet at the same time, a conversation has a structure but it’s tough to keep a good conversation, an interesting conversation or an organically unfolding conversation. It’s hard to keep it in a structure. It’s like trying to keep that thing in a box is canned and it feels canned. Over time, people get that feeling that something feels canned. Maybe people listen to twenty episodes and then they go, “I just can’t listen to another one.”
It’s interesting and I sometimes think that my grandfather would have been better posed for the future than maybe my grandchildren will be. He would have understood all the tools and the tactics. He would have been amazed by those. He could have found somebody else to do those for him but he knew the strategy. He knew what he was trying to do. I see that more and more people are saying, “If I only use this tool or if I only use this hack,” whatever it was and they’re looking at a transaction, not a relationship.
Long-term profitable businesses have to be built on some relationship. It’s never been easier to make a transaction anywhere. If you want to sell something, go on Amazon and be a penny cheaper than the next person and you’ll sell it. It will also be a race to the bottom because they’re going to sell it for a penny less than you. A true business is one that has a lifetime value of a customer. It’s got loyalty, it’s got profits and that’s only going to come through relationships. If you’re just seeing it as a transaction no matter what you are, you’re disposable, you’re replaceable. From that standpoint, the more things change, the more we’ve got to look back and say, “What is the strategy that we’re trying to use here?” We can keep up with the new technology but we have to say, “What’s the strategy behind it?”
We’re putting language to ideas. I appreciate doing that and I like to think of things in an analogy format as well. They are easy ways for me to remember things. This is a new paradigm versus the old paradigm. At least how we feel and how we’ve been speaking about it and then writing and publishing some articles in LinkedIn and elsewhere about this. It’s a movement away from a mentality and a paradigm of closing sales versus opening relationships. When you talk about the problem with marketing that a marketer can come in and screw up anything, that’s the essence of it. People have to learn how to market. To survive and to thrive in business, you’ve got to be an excellent marketer.
Being an excellent marketer has to still come from a place of authenticity and it still has to meet people truly where they are. Otherwise, if you’re doing something for the sake of making a sale or closing a sale, you’re not creating a relationship. Therefore, you’re not creating a business that is sustainable because it’s the costliest thing in business to acquire a new client. The client acquisition cost as it’s called is the highest of any aspect of the business. It’s about opening a relationship and then continuing to serve that relationship forever. I’m not taking exception to the language you used.
Lifetime value of a client is something we even go, “What does that mean?” because our intention is to have no lifetime value. We want to have a no shelf-life to the relationship so that the lifetime value is eternal. We’re going to continue to serve and add value, whether they buy or don’t buy it, etc. Some of these relationships take a long time to incubate before people decide that you’re for real. You’re what they’re looking for, that you’re somehow different than the run-of-the-mill other guy or woman who is going to do it for cheaper or promising more and delivering less in all likelihood. That takes a lot of effort. There’s a lot of time that goes into it.
Our nurturing system or the way that we seek to nurture those relationships through our social media and through any other things is all about meeting a person in that place where you attract, engage and delight them without then also having a catch to it. That there’s no quid pro quo as in, “I’ll do all these things for you and then you must buy from me.” That’s what makes the relationship and then I’ll move on to the next person and do the same thing with them. It is telling at this moment that you’ve got to market and you’ve got to market in an authentic way. What I love about podcasts personally is that it gives you access to do that. We didn’t start our podcast thinking, “This is a great way to market.” We didn’t start our podcast thinking that somehow, “This will give me another way to create a call to action and disguise it as something else, another little mousetrap, another tripwire in the internet marketing space or another lead magnet.” That wasn’t our intention for it.
We’re finding is that people are engaging with us. They’re staying engaged. Ultimately, when they learn about what we do, which is in many ways to train people on there to pivot into something new. Whether it is speaking or it’s some other area of a business idea like internet marketing, creating a digital product or something like that. That they’re finding us and they’re asking us like, “We’ve been listening to your show for a long time. We love it. We’ve been a part of your Facebook group. We love what you guys are doing there. Can you tell us more about X, Y and Z thing?” That’s very different than a lot of this other older paradigm way of manipulating or tricking people into believing they’ve got a problem. That you have the solution to that, they must act upon now or they’re a loser.
By definition that’s bad marketing because the return on investment isn’t there. You’re just churning on that. I would argue that every businesses’ biggest problem now is obscurity. We’ve got so many customers available there that no matter what you have now as a product or a service, the biggest problem is that you’re obscure to those people that you can help. You can help them right now and they would pay you dearly for what you have if they only knew about you. I think that’s changed. One of my favorite tweets that I’ve ever seen came from Rand Fishkin from SEOmoz. He put that, “The best way to sell something is not to sell anything but to earn the awareness, the trust and the respect of those you might help,” and that’s what it’s all about. That is the marketing where people don’t treat you like a leper, that you’re an internet marketer. That’s good marketing if you can go out there and earn the respect, the awareness and the trust of those that you can help.
Share something that you’re inspired to talk about either in the business space that you’re in right now or in your personal life. I’m happy to go down that road as well with you. People are probably saying, “This is a smart guy. I like listening to this guy.” I want to know maybe a little bit about how it is you’re feeding your mind and what inspires you? I want to look at the future too as to what’s the space here in podcasting in particular? What’s that going to look like three years from now?
What inspires me is cross-pollination. In nature, the only way you get fruit is through cross-pollination, one tree to another. It’s the same thing for humans. The only way we bear fruit in our lives is being exposed to new ideas, new people. That used to be so hard. I live in Southwestern Michigan. How am I going to learn from somebody that lives in California? Now it’s never been easier. If you’re ignorant or isolated, it’s largely by choice. That’s what I’m so excited about is that you can learn whatever you want through videos, through podcasting. You can teach whatever you’ve learned and it’s never been easier. One of the challenges I always make to people is that what’s ordinary to you is amazing to others. What you know in your mind you think, “Everybody knows that,” everybody doesn’t. That could help a whole lot of people if you would just share that with them and it’s never been easier to do that.
Podcasting is probably the easiest medium to do that. If you’re an introvert and don’t want to go on stage in front of 100 people, you can have a discussion right here with Adam. It’s just one-on-one. Introverts can do it. If you don’t like how you sound, you don’t have to listen to your own podcast. If you don’t like the way you look, don’t do a video podcast. We call it around here the podcaster mullet. When it’s video, it’s only got to be business from here up. It can be down below. I’m not a writer but I can dictate stuff. I can transcribe things and make it into a blog and clean it up. That’s what I’m most excited about is how easy this has gotten, how anybody can do it. The barriers to entry are lower than the way to repurpose the content and to share it with people in different ways has never been easier.
You can transcribe this with an artificial intelligence program called Temi.com for $0.10 a minute. You could take an entire hour-long podcast and it’s going to cost you $6 to transcribe the whole thing. That’s a huge blog right there. There is no better time to be alive. To write a blog is a homework assignment. My current workflow is I get an idea in the shower, I write down four or five bullet points. I go on a rant for four or five minutes into my phone. I send that in to be transcribed and within probably a minute it goes to somebody on my team that cleans up my English, puts all the correct pronunciation in there, puts a picture, all the rest of that and I get a blog.
This is piggybacking what you’re saying, a different way of doing it. We use Zoom. We’re recording and we’re using Zoom for the upload to YouTube. Literally, anybody can get a free account on Zoom. Turn the camera on or not turn the camera on, your choice. Record your audio. You get a link. Create an unlisted link on YouTube, it takes six seconds. Go to YouTube, click on the video, click on another little button that has for transcriptions and it turns your audio into a transcription instantly. It’s three seconds later and it doesn’t cost you $6. It costs you nothing. You copy and paste and stick it in a document. Somebody else, you or you outsource the cleanup, the editing, etc. That’s one way that when you want to get your content created and repurposed, you can use that to do it. We’re converting every one of these podcasts into a blog for SEO purposes. Maybe say a little bit about that for those that don’t know quite exactly how it is that that’s used. This is a big tool for us in terms of how we get domain authority for our website. The podcast is a big deal for that.
The way the search engines crawl the sites is they’re looking for content that would help people. They’ll crawl through looking for words. The more words you have on the page, the more chances there are that they’re going to find the good words in there. Sometimes the words people misspell can be important there. If you think about it, most people talk at 150 words a minute. If you have a 30-minute conversation, imagine how much content is there. The search engines are going to crawl that. The other thing is that 10% of the US population is hearing-impaired. There are still people that read that. The difference between a good podcast and a bad podcast is one that they can read or maybe even read along as they’re listening to it because they can’t hear it as well.
The other thing that’s a hidden gem in podcast interviews is the backlinks. We’ve got some clients that are doing podcast interviews just for the backlinks. The way that works is that the search engines are looking to say, “What websites should we put at the top of the Google ranking? When I put in a search, which one should I show first?” One of the trust factors or the authority factors they use there is, “What other sites have linked to them?” If Adam’s site links to my site, it’s a signal that, “This site is so good that I’m going to send my people off my site onto Tom’s site and vice versa.” If we send it off onto Adam’s, that’s a signal to Google that says, “We think this is value,” and some of those are even more valuable like the ones from educational like .edu. Those are gold. A website that comes from the government like .gov, those are golden links. You might say, “Why would I go to the Kalamazoo Valley Community College Podcast?” You get a .edu link that is golden there. There are a lot of podcasts out there that the government services are doing. It could be some government-buying agency that does a podcast. If you’re on there, you get a link back from the US government. That is a trusted source as far as Google comes for ranking websites.
The optimal size or minimum size for a blog that would be usable for SEO purposes that those crawlers, whether it’s for Google or one of the other search engines, are going to find is about 1,200 words. When people speak at an average of 130 or 170 words a minute, it’s not difficult to get 1,200 words of content created. You’re looking to be ranked in certain keywords, keyword phrases, etc. It’s those words that show up in the blog, those words that you know that you’re looking to get ranked in that will help the domain authority for your website. In essence, more people will see it when they search for certain words and phrases. Your site would come up on maybe page one of a Google search versus page six. That is all good for business and for people knowing who you are.
The most important thing for a business or the most frustrating thing for a business is obscurity. This is one of those great ways where you can do something to cure the problem of obscurity. I also want to reiterate something you said that being ignorant or isolated is by choice. There’s no reason that you have to be ignorant or isolated. If you are, it’s that you’re choosing to be because there are so many easy ways to do something about that obscurity and have the world find you. I’m sure there are some folks out there shaking their head going, “This is what I’ve been waiting here.” There are some people out there that are probably thinking, “I’m not in an online business at the moment. I haven’t created a website. I’m not looking to get traffic to my website,” and all that thing, which is fine. At least you get a little bit of the underbelly side of things. Tom, is there anything else you want to say to close any open loops there?
You’ve got to be authentic. Everybody’s favorite color is transparent. Whatever you’re going to say on a podcast is not going to resonate with everybody. If you try to make it resonate with everybody, it won’t. I guarantee you, if you go on a podcast there’s going to be a fraction of those people that will go, “That person is an idiot,” and they’ll go on. There will be other people that will go, “That was interesting,” and they will go on with their life. That’s fine. It doesn’t mean that either one of those people is a bad person or you’re a bad person but you’re a bad fit when it comes to being a customer. You want to repel those people that aren’t great customers. You want to connect and attract those people that are ideal customers because those are the people that are going to hear you and go, “This person understands me. Adam can help me. I want to work with him.” Those are the people who are going to be thrilled by what you do. You’re going to have fun working with them. They’re going to be more profitable. Those are going to be your customers that are broken hearted when you retire because they want to keep working with you until you drop dead.
Tom, you’re also the Founder of Interview Valet. Among other things, they work with people who want to get on podcasts. Those of you who already have a podcast who are looking for even more great guests because they have a full stable of amazing people they represent. Tom, you also said something which I want to repeat because I love this quote that, “Everybody’s favorite color is transparent.” Will you be transparent with us and let us know what rituals or ritual you have to create more of what you’re looking for in your life? That feeling of success, that feeling that you’re on purpose, fulfilled, peaceful and prosperous.
I try to run everything through a filter and make my decisions through a filter. I had a dear friend and we’d gone to high school together. When we were in our 30s, we were talking about all we wanted to do was retire. We decided that if we retired it would drive our wives crazy and they’d kill us. We defined retirement as doing things we loved with people we enjoyed and writing everything off as a business expense. Bryan died when he was 46 of liver cancer, the same thing Walter Payton had. When I turned 50, I thought of what we had promised each other and I said, “That’s it. At the age of 50, I’m going to consider myself retired. I’m going to do interesting things with fun people and write it off all as a business expense.” That was one of those filters that I look at. Right now, there are so many opportunities or things that you could do. I try to always put that filter. Is it interesting? Is it with people that I want to work with? If it’s not three yeses on that then it’s not right for me. That’s one of those rituals that I try to put all my decisions and life through. It seems like it helps with clarity because now there’s a land of abundance. There are more opportunities out there. Some of the times the hardest part is not saying what you’re going to say yes to but what you’re going to say no to. You can say no to the good to say yes to the great.
I’m going to take that as a compliment because the fact that we’re spending time together means that in some way this time together meets those three criteria. I feel blessed to be included in that. It’s the same for me as well so I love to be careful about how it is that I spend my time and what I say yes to. I’m happy that I and our team said yes to you and working with your company and also having you a guest. I certainly hope that everybody reading this have gotten a lot of value out of it. I’ve gotten a value out of this.
My hope and my prayers even are that you continue to get value out of every day. I know you’ve got value not because you read this blog but because you woke up. There is no guarantee when you went to sleep last night that you were going to wake up now. That’s something to recognize. My prayer is that you, I, Tom and everybody would all wake up again tomorrow. That we are in that moment where we’re taking that first waking breath, that we are aware that it wasn’t guaranteed that we would wake up. Therefore, that’s a blessing. As we’re taking that first breath, that first awake breath of the day, there are people who will be taking their very last breath. There will also be people who are taking their very first breath of life. Babies being born all over as well. It’s a sacred moment. It’s a holy and special moment. It’s something that deserves gratitude and appreciation.
There’s a three-part ritual that we use the waking ritual we teach and share with folks. It is that you wake up, number one. I hope everybody is going to say yes to that. You could be the greatest skeptic in the world and I hope you’ll say, “Yes,” to that step. Second, that you are in appreciation and gratitude at that moment. Thirdly, if you’re willing to do that from your bed or when your feet hit the floor that you say these words out loud, “I love my life. I love my life. I love my life.” It’s been a true blessing to spend time with you here, Tom. Thank you so much for being a guest on the show. Thank you all for reading and supporting. We’d love it if you’d leave a review on iTunes. We’re going have sweepstakes for the folks that have left those reviews soon. I appreciate the reviews. You can also leave a comment if you like and I’ll interact with you on our website. If you’d love to engage with us in another medium, which we are finding great value from which is our Facebook community, which is Start My Pivot Community, you can by going to PivotFB.com. We’d love to connect with you there further. Have a beautiful rest of your day and many blessings to you. Ciao for now.
- Tom Schwab
- Interview Valet
- Conscious Pivot Podcast on iTunes
About Tom Schwab
Tom Schwab knows how to build an online business. Marketing at its heart is starting a conversation with someone who could be an ideal customer. Drawing on his engineering, corporate, and e-commerce inbound marketing experience, Tom helps thought leaders (coaches, authors, speaker, emerging brands) get featured on leading podcasts their ideal prospects are already listening to. Then he helps them to turn listeners into customers. Author of PODCAST GUEST PROFITS: Grow your business with a targeted interview strategy, Founder of Interview Valet, the category king of Podcast Interview Marketing.
Tom grew up in the suburbs of Chicago and was never more than 150 miles from his home. His life changed when he was accepted into the US Naval Academy (thanks to a clerical error). Suddenly the world got larger as he went around the world, met new people, and ended up running nuclear reactors for his first job out of college. After transitioning to the corporate world he rose in the ranks of a Fortune 500 medical device company serving in engineering operations, sales, and marketing. He ultimately sold back his distributorship to the manufacturer.
After finishing his MBA in Marketing, Tom saw that the world was changing. Potential customers were using the internet to find solutions to their problems. A Pioneer in inbound marketing, his direct to patient durable medical equipment company was one of the first eCommerce case studies for HubSpot. In 2014 he hypothesized that podcast interviews could be used much like guest blogs to reach targeted audiences and gain the know, like and trust to convert their listeners into your customers.
Over the next 24 months, his team tested, validated, and refined what would become to be known as Podcast Interview Marketing. In 2016 Interview Valet, a concierge level Podcast Interview Marketing agency was launched. Today they have 14 team members in the US and serve coaches, authors, speakers and emerging brands.