In episode 12, we talk to podcasting expert Ben Krueger about how you can use a podcast as the front end to your sales funnel. Ben calls it “Cashflow Podcasting”
This method of podcasting works great for business owners with a high customer lifetime value. The cashflow podcasting method works well to build trust, build a relationship and turn listeners into customers.
Make sure you have a strong clear call to action, and help people take that next step in their journey, whatever that is. What is the very next result they need?
Listen to find out
- Who this works for and who it doesn't work for
- How to monetise your podcast
- How to drive listeners to your sales funnel
- Part 1 – Get out to broader audiences and get discovered
- Part 2 – Building a deeper connection with your listeners
- Part 3 – Keeping leads in the warm up cycle
- Part 4 – Taking someone from listener to opt in to your sales funnel
Links Mentioned In The Show
Barry: It's a hard way to make $17, right?
Ben: Oh, it's a tough way to make $17.
Announcer: Welcome to The Active Marketer Podcast, where we talk about how to design, automate and scale your business to the next level using sales and marketing automation. You can find out all the tips, tactics and techniques you need to get more customers and sell more stuff over at theactivemarketer.com. Now here's your host, Barry Moore.
Barry: Welcome, podcast listener, to episode 12 of The Active Marketer Podcast. I'm your host, Barry Moore. This week we are going to talk podcasting. A lot of misconceptions around podcasting or a lot of discussion about the best way to use it in your business. This week we've got podcasting expert, Ben, on the show. He's going to talk about how you can use podcasting as a front end to your sales funnel. Before we get into that, of course the shameless social proof segment of the show, where we read out iTunes reviews. This one is from the Australian iTunes Store from Ash Roy. He says, “Actionable, specific and extremely valuable. Five stars. Just listened to the interview with James Schramko. Barry really does come out swinging for the first episode, which is extremely specific and actionable. Looking forward to great things. Thanks, Barry. Keep up the great work.”
Well thanks, Ash. You can also catch Ash over on the Productive Insights Podcast as well. Appreciate you stopping by and leaving a review. We love to get user feedback, so we can customise the show and make it exactly what you want to hear. If you could head over to iTunes and leave us a review, we'd really appreciate that. Let's get into this week's episode on Cash Flow Podcasting with Ben. I'd like to welcome to the show Ben from Cash Flow Podcasting, where he helps business owners generate cash flow through podcasting and helps people get set up with podcasting over at smallbusinesspodcasting.com. Welcome, Ben Krueger.
Ben: Hey. Excited to be here, Barry. Thank you for having me on. Really happy to share whatever I can with your audience and excited to jump into this here thing, man.
Barry: Thanks, man. As a fan of podcasting here, we always follow you and we're always basically ripping off all the good advice that you give us over on your podcast as well.
Ben: Perfect. That's why I put it out there.
Barry: Yeah. Ben is always a great source on how to get podcasting working for your business. Today we're going to talk about how you can use podcasting as a front end to your sales funnel or front end to your funnel process to get people engaged in your business rather than just a sponsorship type arrangement or content management type arrangement. Ben, you've had a lot of experience in podcasting. A lot of customers come through your doors. What's working the best in podcasting right now, do you think?
Ben: Yeah, that's a really good question, Barry. I think quite honestly a question that not enough people are asking. As you mentioned, right now a lot of folks are … They have their focus when it comes to “monetizing a podcast” on getting sponsors and putting out lots of episodes. That can work. That is something that can work. However, for the listeners out there, we're business owners. We're not here just to produce content. We're not here just to be a news source. Anything that we do as a marketing channel has to actually produce results for the business and shouldn't be a side project or something that goes off in another direction.
What's working really well right now in podcasting is building and really planning podcasting as part of or an extension of your sales funnel. What I mean by that is a few things where podcasting really comes into play. If you've done any research on podcasting, then you've heard the pros of … Yeah, it allows you to build that a … That no life trust relationship with your audience and it allows you to have that more personal relationship display your expertise. Yada, yada. All those things. As part of a sales funnel, generally there's a few basic steps, right?
There's someone discovers you and your message and then they're interested to learn more and that's where your sales funnel comes into play and takes folks from a cold lead or a cold prospect to now they know exactly what you're about, what your message is, what you have to offer them and how it can help them. It puts them in a position to where they are empowered to make a decision for themselves if this is the right solution for them. That's a 30,000 foot view. I'm real excited to get into it, Barry, if we're ready to dive in to the rabbit hole here.
Barry: Yeah, absolutely. I'm always surprised if anything about how many people are using podcasting to go down the “I want sponsorship” route, where it would seem more effective as a business owner that I want to sponsor my own products.
Barry: I want you to engage in my business and I want you to buy my products and my services. Again, they're there to solve a problem.
Barry: Podcasting is … I don't want to say it's a lot of work, but it's a significant amount of work to create the content and get it out there and get your show together. I don't want to go through all that work to sell somebody else's stuff. I want to sell my stuff.
Ben: Yeah, exactly. If somebody is investing in sponsoring your show, they're making money off the back of that.
Ben: They're monetizing your show better than you are. That's just one of those little things to be aware of.
Barry: All right. What's the ethos or the vibe behind the Cash Flow Podcasting system?
Ben: Yeah. Where this works best is for folks who have a significant lifetime value of a customer. If you have a site to where you sell a $17 e-book and one customer is only worth $17 to your business, monetizing through podcasting is possible. It's just not going to be as wildly profitable as those dollar signs in your eyes are hoping for.
Barry: Yeah. It's a hard way to make $17, right?
Ben: Oh, it's a tough way to make $17, but where podcasting absolutely excels is where folks have a pretty significant lifetime value for a client. Generally this is coaching and consulting type of clients to where one client is worth anywhere from $4,000 over the lifetime of that client all the way up to 25, 50 plus over the lifetime value. Now I'm not talking upfront. I'm talking once you do your first project with this person, they see the value or maybe you've got an ongoing type of a project to where it's a monthly recurring type of project. The value here is in individuals who have a product, a service, a coaching or consulting offering that the value of that client is worth anywhere from $1,000 up. That's where you can really use podcasting to grow.
This could be SaaS business, could be a done for you service, like what we do over at Cash Flow Podcasting. Could be a coaching and consulting type of business, but the thing about this is with higher investment programmes like this, they require a lot of trust from that client, from that potential customer. They really have to understand what it is you're doing, what you stand for, what your message is, who you are as an individual and as a business owner and the value that you can offer them. This breaks down into a few pieces. First, podcasting can be incredible for helping you get out to broader audiences of individuals and expand it to where more people that are interested in what you have to say have the potential to discover you. That could be through having yourself on other people's podcast, being a host there and directing them back to your show. Even just being discoverable in iTunes, being discoverable in Google with your own podcast.
That's part one. Part two is building a deeper connexion with the audience members you currently have. If you have an email list or if you have a following of some sort, everybody has got that silent majority. There's the few people that are super engaged and they're really excited and that are always emailing or social media-ing or sharing or thumbs upping whatever you've got to say.
Ben: Then there's the 90-plus % of individuals who don't really engage with your stuff. They may read your blog posts every once in awhile. They may read your emails. They may not. There obviously is no real relationship there because there's that distance. There's no true connexion. What podcasting is fantastic at doing is taking people from that silent majority and giving them an additional way to really hear your message, really hear the expertise that you have as an individual and relating that to themselves and how that will help them because of course we're all busy individuals and we all have this “what's in it for me” approach, which is natural, but you as the business owner need to play to that strength and make sure that what you're sharing helps people realise, “Oh, this guy or gal has something that can really benefit me.”
That's part two. Then part three is essentially when folks find out about you or they discover you, whether they find out about you from a referral or from a podcast, let's say, or from a Facebook ad, they may not be ready to move forward with your product or service offering right now. It's the classic buying cycle. Most individuals that you connect with will not be ready to purchase, sign on the dotted line and move forward right now, but with podcasting, it's essentially a perfect tool for keeping people in that warmup cycle to where they know that they're interested in what you have to say.
Let's say you talk about helping people launch Kindle books. They know that they want to because there's tonnes and tonnes of people out there that want to launch a Kindle book, but they're not ready to do it right now. They've got a bunch of projects going on. They just want to learn a little bit more about the medium, about the fact that you as the host know what you're talking about, so that when they are at a point when they are ready to move forward with their Kindle book, who are they coming to?
Ben: It makes it a very simple choice. They've already been listening to your advice for possibly even a few months now. Now they're ready to move forward. Then the next step is to take folks from listeners into the very beginning of your sales funnel. We can hop into that, Barry, but I want to take a quick break because I know when you get me going on this stuff, I have a hard time slowing down.
Barry: Well yeah. I just want to review and hit some highlights there. The Cash Flow Podcasting system that you're specifically focused on is great for those businesses out there that have monthly recurring revenue models. While it can work I guess for those one off sales, as you were talking about, if it's a lower ticket item, it's not a bigger ticket item, it's probably more work than it's worth. If you've got something that involves monthly recurring revenue, like a SaaS model or a coaching model or something like that, then it's great because you need to build, as you said, that know that I can trust factor. Just having people hear your voice is a great way to build that confidence. I think the other diabolical evil genius of podcasting … Dun, dun, dun. It's the online marketing that isn't necessarily online. If people are going to consume your blog content or they're going to consume your video content, they've got to be sitting in front of a screen, whether it's an iPad or a computer or whatever and reading your book or watching your videos.
Podcasting is the online marketing that isn't necessarily online. They could be out walking the dog or running on the treadmill or driving to work. You become a regular part of their routine, which is fantastic for any marketer if you can become part of someone's routine. The other evil genius is once they subscribe, that message gets automatically delivered to their phone or whatever device they happen to consume on. You don't have to constantly harvest and try and find customers again because your message is automatically being delivered to their device and to their phone, which is something they have with them all the time. There's some real super benefits there to podcasting, as you mentioned. I just wanted to make sure we highlight some of those.
Ben: Absolutely. I know I can skim over that stuff sometimes because I talk about it so darn much. I know the message so well that oftentimes I forget that individuals who haven't done a lot of research on podcasting, some of the more common benefits, I tend to breeze over because I'm like, “Oh, well everybody knows that.” Of course that's not always the case.
Barry: Yeah. I think everybody is like that in whatever field they work in.
Barry: One of the things I also wanted to touch on too is that kind of serial podcasting is also great for people who have a product or a service offering that's quite deep. We talk about marketing automation here at theactivemarketer.com. That's a big subject. There's lots of things you can do without marketing automation, lots of different features that people don't even get into or don't even understand. It's an ongoing education process about all the different possibilities that are available to you with marketing automation. It's not just the same message every time. It's getting in touch with your customers and just letting them know it's possible and building your authority in your particular field of expertise, week by week by week, so that they know that you know what you're talking about. You know your shit.
Ben: Yeah, exactly. Exactly. Oftentimes a lot of folks … This is the classic, “What if I give away the cake?” You want to give away the cake. The more information that you share for free out to your hot prospect list, the more they're going to say, “Oh, this guy or gal really knows what they're talking about. This is the stuff that they're giving out for free. Imagine if I worked with them. Imagine the quality of the advice or the coaching or the product, service, whatever then.”
Barry: Yeah, exactly.
Ben: Yeah. You definitely want to share as much as you can and really make sure that you're adding value. I like to call it results in advance. You're helping people get results before they even start working with you. It's the classic if you want to learn guitar, you can find all these free guitar lessons on YouTube. As soon as you get five lessons in and you play your first song, to learn the next lesson, you have to opt in and purchase a coaching package, but now you're hooked because now you've played your first song and you know the first six or seven chords. You've gotten results in advance.
Barry: Yeah. If you're confident in your product offering and you're confident in your knowledge and your ability, then you don't care if you give … You want to give it away for free, as you said, so that people understand there's always more. Always more to be had. All right. What's the next step then, Ben?
Ben: Yeah. The next step is taking folks from listener and that silent majority of folks that listen to you on their way into work but never really engage with you, taking them from there to they have raised their hand saying, “I'm interested in what you have to share,” and essentially opt in to part of your sales funnel. A lot of the other episodes here on the show I assume will be talking about email sequences and sales funnel sequences. The real key to helping folks make that transition from podcast listener to, “I want to hear from you consistently via email and what you have to share,” is a really strong, clear call to action.
A lot of people fall off the train on this one because everybody and their brother has got some kind of a free PDF download guide on their site. The concept is a little bit inundated. What I want to do is take a step back and help people understand that when you put together a call to action or something that is a giveaway of some sort, the real key is to help people take that very next step to get a result that they would get from working with you directly. Whether that's your product, your service, your SaaS app, whatever. Let's say you're a business coach and you coach startup businesses to help them get funding. If you think from your target audience's point of view, they're listening to your podcast. They're getting a lot of really great information. What is the very next step that they need to take to get an initial result to see some momentum and that once they have that momentum, then they're essentially qualified to be a potential prospect for your product, service, coaching service?
For early stage startups looking for funding, maybe it's a 17-point checklist for the optimal pitch deck. I don't know the industry that well, but what you want to do is make sure that for your exact target market, you've got that very next step figured out for them. That's your call to action at the end of all your podcast episodes. “Hey, you've learned a lot in this episode. We were really excited because we talked about this, this and this. Folks, if you're out there, you're looking to get that initial round of funding, we put together a free tool for you at this website.com. It's going to help you do this, this and this, which is the very first step in getting that funding. I wish you guys the best and we'll see you back next week,” or however your sign off goes.
I think a lot of people go so vague with their calls to action that nobody takes action because it's like you go into a Mexican restaurant and you can never pick because there's too many freaking choices and none of them are very different from each other, right? They're all rice, beans, cheese and tortilla.
Barry: Just folded differently. That's the only difference, right?
Ben: Exactly. You want something that really is like, “Boom.” That is the exact next step for your target market because it allows folks to really raise their hands.
Barry: Yeah. I guess the evil genius part about it being the online marketing that's not online is also the drawback in that if you're trying to get people to convert and get on your mailing list or take the next step, a lot of the times, as I said, they're not in front of a computer screen. They're running or they're walking the dog or driving. You have to have a really compelling opt in, a really compelling next step to bring them back when they get home or when they get somewhere where they can take that next step. Also I think too, I'll get your thoughts on this, but I hear a lot of podcasts where there's just too many calls to action on a single podcast. Do you think it's best to just have one single call to action and that's it? Maybe rotate that call to action based on the subject of the podcast.
Ben: I think personally that having one call to action, one strong, clear call to action at the end of every episode is key. If people are saying, “Subscribe, rate and review on iTunes and check us out on Stitcher and you can see the show notes here,” it becomes way too muddled. The end of every episode should be one clear call to action. Now throughout the episode, as it comes up in natural conversation … If let's say we start talking about email subject lines and you've got an opt in tool that helps people with email subject lines, you can take a quick moment and say, “Hey, since we're talking about this, I put together a free tool for you. You can grab it here. Go ahead and grab that if you're interested.” Then you move on.
Only one call to action at a time. The main calls to action you should be focusing on with a podcast episode is some sort of email opt in because then once somebody has opted in, as part of your auto responders' sequence, then you can encourage people to subscribe, rate and review in iTunes and it's much more sequential. It gives them what they want first and then gives them the opportunity to continue getting what they want by subscribing, rating and reviewing, but not trying to flip the script and saying, “Hey, you like the show. Subscribe to our stuff and then we'll try to …”
Ben: The typical approach is pretty backwards. I think we'll talk a little bit about that in a separate episode, Barry.
Barry: Fair enough.
Ben: Which I'm excited about, but yeah. That's my take on it.
Barry: Just one other question too while I've got you here. I've heard people do this a couple of different ways. You want to try and drive people back to your show notes obviously where they can get more resources and where you can get that opt in offer happening. I've heard people do it a couple different ways, where it's theactivemarketer.com/episode27 or it's theactivemarketer.com/subject. You know what I mean? On podcasting. Do you find it works better with an episode number that people can hang their hat on or just a key word that goes along with that subject line when you're creating a pretty link for your show notes?
Ben: Quite honestly, both work. They key is that it's memorable.
Ben: Really one doesn't necessarily have a benefit over the other. You could say that the keyword has an SEO benefit, but actually what we end up doing for all of our clients is we use a keyword-rich page title and then we just forward. If it's let's say podcasturl.com/3, we just use a tool called Pretty Link to forward that URL over to the keyword-rich SEO title.
Ben: Really it comes down to being what's going to be memorable and that goes for the call to action as well. It really should be focused on what's going to be most memorable for folks, because like you said, folks are going to be driving to work, jogging, walking the dog, whatever. It's not going to be an easy opt in for them. This is one of the tougher connexions to make. The other option is to always drive people to the homepage of the site and have the homepage of the site obviously display the latest episodes and have a very clear organisation method, so that let's say you listen to an old episode and want to find the show notes. They show up on your site. It's easy for them to find without a whole bunch of digging.
Barry: Yeah, for sure. All right. If Cash Flow Podcasting is right for your business, how do people get started?
Ben: Yeah, that's a good question. Head over to cashflowpodcasting.com and you'll see we're putting together some training resources to show people exactly how this can work for their business. That will be put together here. It's still in the putting it together phase. By the time this goes out, that will be live so you can grab it at cashflowpodcasting.com. You can also reach me there. I'll have some contact information on that site as well. You can reach out with any questions. More than happy to help and really excited to help folks really leverage the incredible power of podcasting as a marketing tool, not just a content tool.
Barry: Well all right, Ben. I know that it works. I know that podcasting works from my other businesses and from my wife's business. It's been a really, really great tool for her. She's exactly in that market, as you mentioned, that high touch coaching and consulting market. It works [inaudible 00:27:36] for her. I know you're right and I know it will work for people who are in a similar sort of thing, so head over to cashflowpodcasting.com and you can have Ben explain all the intricacies of how it works. Ben, always great to have you on the show and we'll have to get you back on another episode to talk more about engagement as well.
Ben: Yeah, that sounds fantastic, Barry. Happy to share and excited to come back and chat some more. Always a pleasure, my man.
Barry: Thanks, brother. We'll see you next time. Thanks, Ben, for stopping by. You can get all the show notes for this episode over at theactivemarketer.com/cashflow. If you want to learn more about podcasting and how you can get people into your sales funnel, you can check out Ben over at cashflowpodcasting.com. Really appreciate you stopping by. We've got some more Tactical 20 episodes coming up and some more great interviews coming up in the next few episodes. Please subscribe on iTunes or Stitcher, so you don't miss any of those episodes. In the meantime, get out there and design, automate and scale your business to the next level using sales and marketing automation. See you next time, everybody.
Announcer: Thanks for listening to The Active Marketer Podcast. You can find the show notes and all the latest marketing automation news over at theactivemarketer.com.