Do you want to get into podcasting but are unsure where to start? Then, you’ve come to the right place! Join Jen Du Plessis as she chats with podcasting expert Matthew Halloran on everything you need to create a podcast. Matthew is the podcast host of Be Your Own Loud and Top Advisor Marketing Podcast. In this episode, he shares valuable and practical advice on how to launch your podcast. Tune as they break down all you need to know about equipment, finding guests, monetization, and more!
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The Dos And Don’ts of Podcasting With Matthew Halloran
We have Matt Halloran and like me, we were both podcasters. He has two podcasts, which is exciting. The first is Be Your Own Loud, which I had the privilege of being on and Top Advisor Marketing Podcasts. Welcome to the show. I’m so excited to talk to you.
Thank you for having me. I appreciate it.
I was looking at your bio and you had said you have been on over 1,000 podcasts. I’m at 1,267, either on my show or being a guest on a show. We are going to have a good time because we know what we are talking about. For those of you that are reading, I want to say thanks for reading. We appreciate you taking time out of your day. This is going to be a little bit of a different type of show that we have done, although I do want to know about your story and how you broke through glass ceilings. We are going to talk about podcasting and it is important for those that are reading because podcasting is still a big thing. It is not going to go away. We were having a blast with it.
Some people are trying to make that shift, transform and break through the glass ceiling of, “How do I put on a podcast?” We can give them some advice, but I want to learn from you, not from me. Let’s talk about your glass ceilings. What got you into podcasting? Where were you before that you said, “I’m done with whatever I was doing,” to, “I’m going to try this thing?”
I got behind the microphone the first time at thirteen years old. This madman, Matt Halloran, at high school, had a radio station. I did that all through high school. When I got out of the Navy and came back to go to college here in my hometown, I was on the radio station there. Being behind the microphone is something that I have always wanted as a career. I got off the radio for the first time and ran into my advisor’s office. His name was Chris Kirkpatrick. I said, “Chris, this is exactly what I want to do for a living.” He said, “You are going to have to find another job because the industry is changing so much and all of that stuff.”
The big shift that happened is I was a professional coach and consultant in financial services for about 8 to 10 years. I got burned out. The big issue is people don’t realize that to make any change, they have to figure out who they are as a human first. You don’t have to like it but you have to accept that first, and then change can happen.
You can’t just go to a Tony Robbins event, go here or there, spend twenty minutes with somebody, and all of a sudden, you are going to make these huge life changes. It takes work. I found that there were very few people who wanted to do the work. I got my business partner, Kirk Lowe, who is like, “Let’s do a podcast.” That is how it all started.
How long ago was that when you started?
[bctt tweet=”To make any change, you have to figure out who you are as a human first. They don’t have to like it, but they have to accept that first and then change can happen.” username=””]
Kirk and I started several years ago. We have published over 4,000 episodes for financial advisors and about 50,000 social media posts. This is all I do. I have two jobs, and I’m talking about podcasting. That’s my whole existence. It was one of those things where Kirk was like, “Nobody was doing it then, which is hysterical.” It was less than 1%. If you look at experts in general, experts don’t podcast. I don’t get it.
I was grateful because my other show, Mortgage Lending Mastery, will be eight years on January 1st, 2022 since I have been doing that show and then two years coming up in 2022 for this one. I was fortunate because I used it as a tool in the financial services business that I had. In Mortgage Lending, I used it as a tool to get my expansion.
Quite frankly, if I didn’t have that show, I would be a retired loan officer. It accelerated my business. Walk us through this. I have a story too on this but I want to know about your first podcast. What kind of microphone and all that stuff did you have? People get so wrapped up in, “I got to have all this fancy stuff.” No, you don’t. You just need a mouth.
We made every mistake you could make with podcasting and the first episode was abysmal. I use my computer’s microphone and webcam. We recorded it on Skype. I did the intro and outro, all of the editing of the audio, the summary, show notes, all of those things. We budgeted about $100 for the first show and it ended up costing us way more than that, mostly because it was much more than that. I was charging my hourly rate at that. It took me two and a half hours to get that first episode done. That is where it all began.
How many times did you record it?
I’m glad you did that because I used to sit and go, “That is not what I want to say.” I don’t care if there is a flub up or if I can’t find a word. It is more genuine that way and pretty interesting. I did a show with me having my headphones, not earpieces like this. I had one in one ear and then I had my guest in the other ear. We were sitting close to each other. We had connected to my phone and recorded a voice recording. This was before you had a video on podcasting. That is cool in sharing and it was pretty funny you are doing it together. For you, you don’t need a guest all the time. I do a couple of monologues but you are doing a monologue together. Have you ever done one by yourself or have you always done your chit-chatting together?
Philosophically, I’m not a huge fan of what I refer to as solo casting unless you are a professional actor or you are 1,200 episodes in. You could pull it off. Could I pull it off? I could but our audience expects it to be a conversation. What we do is we call it an interview conversation style-based format. That is what we do, not only for our podcast but for our clients.
I have to digress very quickly because you said something so funny. One of the first people that we interviewed was these two coaches in financial services and we were doing it on Skype. I was like, “I would like to be able to see you guys during this.” They were like, “You can’t see us.” I’m like, “Why won’t you share your camera?” I have known these ladies for a long time and we were friends. They were like, “I’m sitting in a closet with a towel over my head.” I was like, “What are you doing that for?”
They were concerned about echo and noise. I’m like, “This isn’t that level of the quality podcast here.” If you have the right microphone, you don’t even have to worry about any of that stuff. One of the big issues, especially in our industry, is people overspend on that stuff all the time. They buy the RODECaster Pro, a $5,000 microphone, and all these lighting things. You don’t need any of that.
I’m standing in a bay window. Everything here is natural light and then I got this little guy here, which I have had forever. I carry him with me when I go places. I find that very interesting because this is the thing that holds people back from starting a show. I will tell you because I am a coach. I coach people and there are a few that want to do a podcast. They were like, “What is the name of this and that? I’m waiting to get all my equipment. Once I have all my equipment, I’ll start doing it.” It is a matter of doing it. Les Brown says, “You have to start to be great. You don’t have to be great to start.”
This microphone here is the Samson Q2u USB Microphone. It is a direct show condenser microphone worth $59. You will never need to replace this microphone.
I see you are using a Yeti as well.
I have a very different mic set up and part of it is because the Yeti works well with your voice, but it does not work well with mine. This is a Shure SM58. It is probably one of the most famous microphones ever. This is what all rockstars use. If you like to hit somebody over the head with this thing, it weighs 5 pounds. That is something that I grew up on. This is the mic that I use. I have a mixing board mostly so that I can control people’s volume and have any filters on it.
That is more advanced and intensive because I’m listening to you from my computer. I could put my headset but I have problems with mine on my computer. I have given up on putting little earbuds in and going to this. There is a little echo-y but you are all hearing what I’m talking about.
I have monitors here but you can’t use Bluetooth at all. I want to say out loud, “Please, use a corded microphone because there is a delay,” especially that gets very annoying for guests. From an editing perspective, it is not easy. A plug-and-play microphone is what you need to start.
[bctt tweet=”Podcasting is not meant to be general. It’s meant to be hyper niche focused.” username=””]
If someone reading is saying, “I want to start a podcast,” let’s walk them through a few high-level things that we talked about with some technology. I started mine with an earphone and a phone. I went into my closet because it was quiet there. That is where I recorded. I didn’t have to do video or anything like that way back then. That is good but that is how I started. All the episodes were recorded on my cell phone. If that’s all you do, that’s all you do. Do something.
You are an expert at this. Give people your perspective on what the topics are. How do I find my guests? What should I name it? How do I get the album cover? What is this intro and outro thing? Who can do that? Do I have to learn how to do that? Can I hire someone? Give us some high-level thoughts on people that are starting. What would you recommend that they do and don’t do?
Step number one is you should come up with the philosophy of the show, not the name of the show. What that means is who are you talking to exactly. Jen, you and I talked about this when you were on our podcast. Podcasting is not meant to be general. It is meant to be hyper niche-focused. If you want to talk about fishing in Northern Michigan using a baitcasting rod on a flat bottom boat, that is a podcast. Some people are going to look for that and find it, so be as focused as you can.
Step number two, try to come up with your first twelve topics before you ever hit record. Everybody wants to know your story. I still get pushback on this, Jen. We had done thousands of podcasts and people still say, “I don’t want to do this.” You need to. Your first 2 or 3 podcasts need to be about you because somebody comes in at episode 4,000 and they are going to go back and say, “I get to know who this gentle lady is. I want to know her story.” All of a sudden, they binge listened to your show and all of your numbers went up. Your first three need to be who you are, what do you do, and what makes you unique.
Both of my shows have that in them. Why am I doing this show? Who am I? What is my story? What are some of my philosophies? Why do I feel it was important to do? For this particular show, I was making a transition and then I was like, “What do I do now? I’m done being in loan thing.” That is where it was like, “What is life after raking through all these glass ceilings?” It wasn’t just financial. It was everything.
My identity was being successful in the mortgage business, but I was moving and shifting to wanting to be significant and make an impact. It was everything from there, and that is a philosophy, then the name came in. It is a long name but I always call it Success to Significance. I call it STS most of the time. You’ve got to have those twelve but explain the reason why you have to have the twelve. This is why there are failures in a podcast.
It is called podfade. In Google, there are 2 million podcasts listed and about 700,000 active podcasts. That means that they are constantly producing and syndicating monthly new content.
That is for 60 or 90 days. You’ve got to have those twelve so that you get that jump. Here is the other thing about the twelve that I want you to talk about. Do you release the twelve all at one time? Do you spread it out? Did you do a hybrid?
There are a lot of levels to that question. For expert-based podcasts like what you have here, we are not a fan of seasons. It is like a television season on Netflix. They release all of them at once, but we do want you to have a launch strategy. We recommend 3 to 4 podcasts syndicated in the can, which means that they are recorded, produced, and all of that stuff. They were in your syndication network, Pod, Blubrry, Libsyn, or whatever you are using. You go live and splash the world, telling everybody and your sister about the podcast. That is important.
Let’s move on to something else that I want to talk about. I don‘t want to talk about editing because I have been through a lot of gyrations of editing. I don‘t do any of it. We talk and I let them know, “If somebody sneezed, you got to edit at some point and otherwise, forget it.” I do want to talk about the guests because this is something that one of my clients is challenged.
I’m helping her through this because I have the benefit. I’m an international speaker. I’m in a lot of stages and so are other speakers at the same time. If I like them, I go, “I would like you on my show.” It is super easy for me to get guests on my show but there are challenges for people. What has been, in your experience, the best tool for you when you first started to get guests on your show?
You coach this, I am sure, but you all should have a hotlist of prospects or networks. It is the same thing with podcasting. I created a hotlist when Kirk and I first started. I met about 75% because I focused. Jen, that is the thing and where people fall. They were like, “I’m going to cast this wide net.” No matter what industry you are in, you have centers of influence, referral partners, local celebrities, and people like Jen, who is a great person to be on the show.
What happens is once you get a core group of 5 to 10 guests on your show, you keep farming those people, not to get them back on your show, but they are going to know people. I have got a group on LinkedIn of four different people who all do like the Be Your Own Loud podcast. If we have a great guest, we put that person’s name in there and say, “You all should interview this person.” That is how you and I met.
Let’s pull the reins back a little bit because Jerome Myers, who is a friend of yours and a friend of mine, introduced us together. You have been a guest on his show. He has been a guest on my show. He sang your praises, “Jen didn’t have to sell herself at all.” I’m like, “You are a friend of Jerome. You’re in.” That is the stuff that happens and you start gaining momentum.
That is powerful and that is what will happen after this show for you. You will get an email that says, “I hope you enjoy being on the show. We love having you. Is there another client or person you have interviewed on your show or another show that you feel I should be connected with and do a swap? Is there another show that you think I would be a good guest on? Thanks. Bye.” I call it the dot dot dot method. You just don’t do a show. You have that dot dot dot method of continuing to expand. When you are out galley batting and meeting people, you should be thinking, “They could be a great person on the show. What do they have to deliver to this show?”
Let’s move into one other aspect here, and that is making money on a podcast. For me, what has happened with books transcended into podcasts because people used to say all the time, “You are not going to make any money writing the book. It is what you do because you wrote the book.” You are not going to make any money podcasting but it is what you are going to get as a result of podcasting. Let’s talk about the myth behind that.
[bctt tweet=”The Perfect Podcast Formula: entertainment, storytelling, education, call to action.” username=””]
When they talk about the monetization of their podcast, they think that they are going to hit these astronomical numbers. Sponsors want to come in and pay you an obscene amount of money to put commercials on your show. Don’t ever do that. There are two reasons why. Number one, it is not going to happen unless you are a celebrity. The numbers you have to reach are 50,000 to 100,000 downloads per show. If you are not hitting those numbers, you are not making any money. Number two, you will lose control. I don’t know about you but I like having editorial control over my shows. I have a team that helps, and if I mess up, they tell me but here’s how you monetize your show.
If you are an expert, you have to have a perfect podcast formula, as we call it, entertainment, storytelling, education, and call to action. Every podcast has to have those four things. You tell the story, then people see themselves in this story. They already envisioned themselves as a client. Number two, 68% listen to a podcast to learn something. You need to be good, which is something a lot of people don’t address. We have an entire coaching program on how to be great behind the microphone. The last thing is call to action.
Somebody invests 27 minutes of their time with you. It’s okay. Ask them to do something like buy your product, go to your website, or set up a consultation. I don’t care what it is but that is where you make money. The podcast is the vehicle. Jen, full disclosure, Kirk and I are on a run rate to do $3 million in production in 2021.
It is in 5 years and all because of the 350 episodes that he and I have done. All we are doing is giving stuff away. I say all the time, “I don’t sell, close or overcome objections anymore. I answer questions when people are ready to buy.” They know who we are, what we do, and even better, they feel an actual connection with my entire team. It is not just me, but it is everybody on the ProudMouth family, and all of a sudden, people were like, “You are the podcast guy. Why do we go with you?” That is exactly who we are and we have been working at positioning ourselves. It doesn’t matter what you sell, who you are, or what you do. You can utilize this vehicle. We believe it is one of your most powerful markets.
No matter what you do in your business. If you are in financial services thinking, “There is nothing for me to sell.” There is. There is your time. You can sell a strategy session to talk to someone or give away a PDF that says, “The five mistakes people make when they do this, that and the other.” It engages people with you and allows them to see the other side of you. The curiosity comes in and that allows for them to take the next step to invest with you if that is what they are doing.
It is top of the funnel and that is important. If podcasting is top of the funnel, your call to action brings them to the middle of the funnel, and then you have whatever those value add relationship-building things to do at your bottom of the funnel.
I’m so proud of you. Not that I need to be but I’m proud of you for making such a success of this show. I want to leave with one question for you. If you could give one piece of advice to someone who is reading, that is everything in between and then life after breaking through the glass ceilings, especially in these times when many people are making transitions and wondering if they should go back to their job or do podcasting as an add-on to whatever they are doing, what would you give to them?
Use Fiverr. This is probably not where you thought I was going to go.
I thought it was going to be more mindset.
It is a mindset shift. I do not work for them, nor am I paid or have an affiliate with them. I just love them because of all of the stuff that Jen said, “You need to have the cover art, album cover, intro, outro, and podcast edited.” All of that stuff can all be outsourced. That is the mindset that I want you to think of. You have to calculate and firmly believe your hourly rate. A lot of us who are entrepreneurs did everything. Kirk, Lisa and I, the three core people of our company, did everything. We have got a team of 27.
You have to think, “Is this a good use of my time?” Jen, you coach on this all the time because that is where you make that next leap. It might feel like a little bit of a step back because there is a cost involved with outsourcing but it is so much better for you to stay in your lane and stay focused. There will be a time where you are like, “I think I can do that.” When you feel that, do it. Outsource and hire somebody else to do the things that you are not that good at, nor should you be spending time getting great at so that you can focus on what makes you unique, different, and whatever that is that you are feeling.
It’s the Hedgehog Theory. Do what you are excellent with, what you love, and what makes financial sense. You can go back into my show, Mortgage Lending Mastery, and find that I released a whole bunch of them at once. It would go 2 or 3 weeks because I had to find the time to do all the editing and all this stuff. I did use Fiverr to marry it, but then I had to upload it and write the notes. Where people fail in doing this is they don’t realize that it is worth it of a goal to have someone do that right from the get-go. It is not difficult but it is time-consuming.
That is the key that you want to think about in that. Thank you so much for sharing that and I love Fiverr. I had them do another logo for me and they did all the voiceovers and everything else. It is pretty cool. I’m so happy and proud of you. I’m excited that I know someone like you. I appreciate you so much for coming onto this show and sharing your wisdom with those that are trying to make that transition and break through those ceilings. This is an excellent way for them to consider doing that. Thank you so much for being here.
Thank you very much.
For those of you reading, thank you so much for taking the time out of your day. Please don’t forget to subscribe to our YouTube channel, @JenDuPlessis. You can simply go there. One last thing, don’t forget to write a review, give us a great five-star rating, and make a comment about what Matt said, how it changed your life and impacted you. We love watching, listening, and looking at those reviews so that we know what to provide you in the future. Thank you so much for joining us. We will catch you next time.
- Be Your Own Loud – Podcast
- Jen Du Plessis – Past episode on Be Your Own Loud
- Top Advisor Marketing Podcasts
- Mortgage Lending Mastery – Apple Podcasts
- RODECaster Pro
- Samson Q2u USB Microphone
- Shure SM58
- @JenDuPlessis – YouTube Channel
About Matthew Halloran
Kermit said, “Always be yourself. Never take yourself too seriously. And beware of advice from experts, pigs, and members of Parliament.”
Like Kermit, I feel that I have the greatest job in the world. I get to interview super smart people and learn from them every day. And then the icing on the cake is that I get to share those interviews with the world. Maybe not as wide of an audience as The Muppet Show, but someday! You gotta have a dream!
“As you start traveling that road of life, remember this: there are never enough comfort spots. The places you are going to are never on the map” –– again, wise words from Kermit the Frog. This is my philosophy on interviewing people and being interviewed. Let’s just see where this goes, it could be wonderful!
I’ve been on 1000+ podcasts, either as a host or a guest. (I host two podcasts, “Be Your Own Loud” and the “Top Advisor Marketing Podcast”!) If I’m not podcasting, I’m talking about the power of podcasting. Yep, it is all about podcasting for me!