All right, I’m going to start this really, really, honestly. This episode has been really hard for me to record. I have tried so many times, I’ve started and deleted, and completed and deleted this episode so many times. So this is going to be the keeper, we’re going to run with this.
This is episode 500 of this show.
500 episodes, seven years, next month will be seven years since we premiered our first episode, launched our first episode. And I apparently still suck at this. No, this one was a really hard one to record because there’s so much I want to say to you as somebody who gives me your time and your attention. We all know what a commodity that is right now, and in this day and age, same with your time. I love having you here and I love getting to hang out with you. And I’m really excited to record this episode.
So I wanted to start by giving a shout-out to a couple of people who have left reviews over the years.
By the way, 500 episodes, reviews still matter.
I would love it if you’d head over to ratethispodcast.com/more and left a review. Of course, subscribe on your favorite place to subscribe. If ever you run into a place and you don’t find the show, let me know, and we will figure that out. It’s not ever happened before, but it could. I want to start by saying, we have reviews from four different countries, which I think is really cool. I mean, and here’s the deal. There’s context, right? We have clients who have reviews from more countries than this. We have listens in more countries than this. Maybe you’re somebody who has reviews from one place, that’s cool too. It’s just exciting. It’s exciting wherever you are.
The United States is overwhelmingly the leader, followed by Canada, and then we have one each from Egypt and Australia. So if you are in Egypt or Australia, you’re going to need to recruit some friends to review the show because currently, you’re not being represented very well. And if you’re from Sweden, which I know we get listeners in, we have listeners in Sweden. If you are from France, we have a lot of listeners in France, too. There’s another one, I can’t remember now, I can’t remember where the other one is.
Leave a review, so we can represent even more countries in the reviews.
I think it’s fun. I use a tool called Podrover, P-O-D-R-O-V-E-R.com to see reviews from all countries, by the way, as a helpful tip.
See, there is going to be value in this episode, it’s not just going to be me rambling on. I wanted to start by the most recent one we got was 17 days ago, and it was from Shannon Baker, and it’s five stars titled, Real and Practical Advice. It says,
“I love that Stacey is so honest with her marketing tips. This has really helped me have more success because I market based on my goals, instead of the cookie cutter tips most people share. Thanks for the hard facts and the laughs that you provide in every episode.”
Thank you, Shannon. Oh, I like that one. That one makes me feel all warm.
Let’s see, we’ve got another one from Jesse recently, about a month ago. Again, five stars.
“Incredible, No BS marketing advice. Stacey tells it like it is. She gives you real marketing advice that cuts through the noise, and is actionable and effective. I love listening to her episodes and always come away with something concrete to implement.”
I want to scroll through here, because I can. I’m going to scroll, and it’s going to be really interesting audio. I’m basically hitting a button incessantly, trying to get through to our first review, which is from six years ago. It’s from Laura KD , five stars.
“Stacey cuts through the social media clutter. Stacey’s very first podcast made me feel clear about my social media strategy, and more confident that I’m focused on the right social media outlets for my business. Can’t wait to hear the next episode. Thanks, Stacey.”
Oh, I love that. See, even six years ago, that’s what the show is about, just strategy.
These were really fun. I will probably read more of them because I will say this and my DMs, my inbox, these are places I often go when I think, “God, no one listens to this show. There can’t possibly be anyone listening to me ramble on for 20 to 30 minutes a week,”. And then I read those and I go, “There totally is, suckers!” And it brings me a great deal of joy, so thanks if you left a review. If you’ve not left a review, I’d love if you could, again, ratethispodcast.com/more is the easiest way to do that on a couple of different platform options.
Moving right ahead, let’s get to the meat and potatoes of this particular dinner. And that is the five things I wish I would’ve known in the last 499 episodes.
I say that because A, I think I’ve done the lessons I learned launching my podcast. And I’ll probably do it again later. But the thing I want to talk about now is sort of that messy middle. I think when we start, we’re thinking about the first 50 episodes, and a hundred episodes seemed impossible. When I celebrated a hundred, 200 seemed impossible. Same with 200, and then 300, and then 400, and honestly now, even at 500, I’ll be honest, I can actually start to imagine 600 and 700 episodes. I can’t imagine what 750 or a thousand is going to be like. And the idea that I would be doing this for seven more years, and 500 more episodes for twice as long as we’ve been doing it now, is insane. I can’t even picture it in my brain.
It may very well happen. I don’t have any intentions of stopping the show certainly, in the near future, but really ever. And so, it feels kind of crazy, but here we are, and there’s lots of times during 100, and 300, and 400 that I learned new lessons about podcasting. It’s interesting, recording this episode, I have learned new things I wish I knew before. Milestone episodes, I need to do what I usually do and do them as a live show because man alive, is it easier for me to show up for the milestone episodes if I have buddies.
So let’s dig into this.
First and foremost, episode 500 will not look like episode one does, it won’t look like episode 100 did.
It won’t look like episode 200 did, it won’t even look like episode 400 did. This show probably sounds the most like it did in 400, it’s a completely different show than it was for the first hundred. But what’s interesting to me, is the most fundamental change actually happened in the last hundred episodes, and that was we rebranded the show. For six years and 400 and some odd episodes, I think we had 450 with the old branding, the show was Hit the Mic with The Stacey Harris, and for the last 30, 40, 50 episodes, this has been Uncommonly More With Stacey Harris.
And that was probably the biggest shift. I think the shift that would not have come had the show not already existed, meaning I couldn’t have predicted that I would rebrand the show, because I wouldn’t have predicted that I would’ve had an agency, and I think that that growth, and that evolution, and that move really didn’t happen without the things I sold and the content I created before it. And so really, really, this show is completely totally different than it is at each milestone.
I really encourage you not ever to get too attached to anything in your show, because things change all the time.
We’ve run lots of different versions of this show in this show. For an example, we’ve had intro and outro music changes over the years. We’ve had rebrands, even when we had the same name, we’ve had rebrands change. We’ve now changed the name of the show, changed a little bit of the focus of this show.
I mean, when I launched the show, I talked almost exclusively about social media. Now we talk about mostly podcasting, but a lot of marketing. I’ve always kind of talked about strategy, I’ve always talked about marketing. I’ve talked a lot about podcasting over the years, but it’s evolved a lot and only because I kept doing it. And so, I think it’s interesting because at every milestone, I can remember myself thinking, “This is what the show will be like. This is working, this is the show.” When the show hit 50 episodes, when it hit a hundred episodes, I did two episodes a year for that first year.
So hitting a hundred episodes came right around the one year mark of the podcast launching. And I thought, “I really found a rhythm. This is for sure what the show is going to be like, this is the show,” and it doesn’t look anything like that now. A, I only do one episode a week. B, we very rarely have guests. C, there’s for sure a third one, like the show’s named something different.
Yeah, it’s just, it’s so, so different, and that is not only okay, I think it’s a good thing.
I think it’s why I got direct messages, as I’ve been talking over the last month about gearing up for this episode and recording this episode, and kind of counting down to it, I’ve had people reach out to my DMs and in my email and be like, “I can’t believe it. I’ve been listening to the show forever!” They remember when the show launched, because they’d been listening to the show that long. Dear God, I hope not every episode. Oh gosh. I can’t believe they’re still friends with me. But I think that there are people who I have in my life, genuinely are in my life because I started this show, and that’s really cool. It’s going to be kind of a sappy day, guys, and I don’t do sap often, but it’s going to be kind of a sappy day.
So let’s rock and roll right into the next thing I wish I’d known.
Sometimes you’re not excited about your show, and that’s okay, that doesn’t go away.
Every time I’ve run into a season of doing the show, granted it’s never been in seasons, but I’ve sort of been in a time where I was just not excited to record, I thought, “Okay, I’ve just got to figure this out, and then it won’t be like this anymore.” I don’t know why I have this delusion, but I do, guys. And let’s be honest, I think most of us do about one or many things in our lives. I would get past the frustration, and I would find my way to the other side and I’d think, “Phew, I’m so glad I figured that out. I won’t ever have to deal with that again.” Like, “Phew, I’m on the other side of that now. The mountain’s not going to come around again,” and it always does.
What’s interesting is the more you do this and the longer you go, it’s oftentimes now easier for me to spot why I’m not excited about the show. In fact, more often than not, it has nothing to do with the show, it has to do with something else going on. Either I’m stuck up somewhere integrity wise, as far as not being in alignment with my offer, or what I’m selling, or what I’m talking about here, or I’m going through an evolution.
I’m trying to learn things and figure things out. I want to do that before I bring it to you so it’s not messy. That’s big for me. It’s really big for me.
It happens and it’s okay, and the best thing to do is approach it strategically. If you see it come up repeatedly around the same things, for example, I’m always really slow to get back into podcast recording in January, because I record all of December and all of January in late November generally, because I try to take December off. I say try, because last year I took no time off. No, I think last year I took a week or two off. And the year before that I took no time off. Before these two years, I took the entirety of December off. I’m doing it again this year, I’m very excited.
Anyways, I record, even one of the years I haven’t done it in preparation for it, I have recorded December and January in November, and so I am now out of practice. I’m out of my sort of cycle, my monthly cycle of podcasting. And so, it takes me a little bit to get back in the mojo in January after taking December off.
In a lot of ways, I figured that out. I learned it the hardest the first year I ever did it, because I didn’t record January as well. I recorded December. And so, the first week back in January, because I was thinking, “Oh, well, while I’m in my off time, I’ll do it,” which never happened. You’re never going to do that.
We need to collectively agree, we’re going to stop lying to ourselves on this because it just is not a thing that happens.
It’s kind of like, “Oh, I’ll get up in the morning and do my homework, mom.” No, you won’t. You’ll freak out and do it on the bus. Anybody else? Maybe that was just me.
Anyways, so I left it, and I was like, “I’ll do it the first week of January. It’s fine.” It was not fine, it sucked hard. I swore I wouldn’t do that, so I did two weeks the next year, still not enough time. Now I know it’s got to be all of January. I’ve got to have on my calendar, time to record February the first week of January. Because I’m going to reveal myself to you now, this is vulnerability. I’m for sure going to move it once before I do it. It’s like I need to know I have a snooze button. I need to have one opportunity to go, “Not this week, but next week.”
It’s called knowing yourself, guys. Self-awareness is key.
For me, that’s really critical, and now I’m better. It’s easier for me than it has ever been to get back into it. But I know there’s going to be a lull there. I wish I would have known this when I first started!
And so, maybe we’re planning for 2021. Full disclosure, is I’m going to probably rerun an old series on this show. Like an old series of episodes, like our Marketing 101 series or something like that. I’ll rerun some episodes that are going to be valuable for you, so that we still have content going out for our business, but also you have something there for you. You have value to start the year, because here’s the deal. 500 episodes, seven years, I have done some great, “Here’s how to start the year right,” episodes. There’s no reason I can’t share that with you again, because let’s be honest, if you listened to it before, or you don’t remember. I know, I’m not a mind reader, I just know. I know. That’s number two.
Number three, team helps, but not until you’re ready.
This is one of those lessons that yes, I’ve learned, and the fact that we offer podcast production services, and I’ve produced a dozen other shows besides this show at this point. More than that, a couple of dozen now, and here’s the deal, this is one I learned myself. I so frequently thought about hiring help earlier in my business. I actually had VAs on and off, and it never worked out and it was never their fault. It 100% was a me problem, because I wasn’t ready, and the same is true for your podcast production. I have attempted in the past of having people help me with my show notes and things like that, never editing because audio engineering degree, but even show notes for the podcast, and social, and help me write emails, lessons like that.
No, never worked out, until my team at Uncommonly More, and it’s funny, even the first year of my show, even once we had an editor on to help with client shows, we had another editor besides me on the team that did the client shows. I still did my show. I didn’t hand over my show until late 2019, early 2020. So it was like 10 months ago, maybe a year. It’s crazy. I wasn’t ready, I was not ready, but when I was ready, it’s now amazing. I totally get why my clients love us. And I totally understand why the clients love this team. I just record the episode and then I get emails, to approve and social posts to approve, and then they just go out, it just happens, and it just goes, it’s crazy.
It was amazing, but again, it could not be amazing, it wasn’t amazing until I was ready, and I mean ready from the had the pieces in place, I knew what the purpose of the show was, I know how the show worked, I know what I was doing in here, I knew what I was talking about, I knew how I was moving people from the space to my client roster.
I knew how to be a leader to the people on my team. And I don’t mean that in like, “Oh, I’m the boss,” but I knew how to communicate my needs to them. I knew how to say, “Hey, this is what needs to happen. This is what I need. And this is where it needs to go. This is why it’s functioning this way,” and that was incredibly helpful.
Now, the good news is, is I didn’t actually figure out any of that on my own. That was where A, coaching came into play, but B, also hiring the right people, hiring people who partner with me, and hiring people who also see the value, and understanding the goals of what’s happening, and that’s why I love our team, and that’s why I love that we’re able to partner with our clients both strategically and functionally, and having a clean, pretty sounding audio. You know what I mean? That’s number three.
Number four, these are assets, not numbers.
As excited as I am that this is episode 500 of the show, this episode in particular is a waste because it’s all about celebrating a number. I just did this 500 times. Anyone can do this 500 times. Lots of people have, and lots of people will. What makes it an asset is that there’s value here, there’s a reason to listen, and my team and I will be able to pull sections of this out to social, and to emails, and to onboarding sequences for programs, and into content curriculum, and as content upgrades, and there’s lots of ways we’ll be able to use this. That’s what makes this an asset.
The reason I say this one in particular, episode 500, is more of just a number than an asset, is because it’s celebrating a thing that is irrelevant. Where I shifted that into an asset, was talking about the value there.
I want to highlight that again, because I think it’s an important distinction. For example, most of the shows that I’ve done to mark these sort of hundreds, so I think episode 100, we did as a live show. I might’ve done lessons learned for episode 100. Episode 400, we definitely did as a live show, 300, we did as a live show, I think we did 200 as well. We’ve done a lot of them as live shows, and there’s not a ton of value in there. It’s a lot of, ‘Hey, look, this is a hundred. Thanks for listening!” Those are numbers, and it’s a waste.
I want you to be thinking about not getting to the next milestone number of your show, but how many ways can you use each thing you’ve created?
Because there’s a ton of episodes that I have now that are mostly worthless, they’re not assets. They are of note. Their lifespan has exceeded their value.
However, they exist as a number so that I could get to a milestone. I was able to build upon them, and that’s great, but I couldn’t use any of them right now, and some of that comes with age. For example, there’s a lot of Google+ episodes early in the show that we just don’t need to talk about, because Google+ is not a thing anymore. I stand by that for cycle of time, it was helpful to a section of people, okay? I did get results from there. However, it’s mostly not useful, especially when it doesn’t exist anymore.
Anyways, now I’m just blushing. I want to wrap this up because I’ve rambled a lot, with probably the most important thing.
I wish I would’ve known to spend less time comparing my show to other people’s shows, because other people’s shows are not structured like mine.
We talked about this when we talked about growth, and growth strategies, and podcast types, and we talked about that last week, but really, really, I spent time comparing my show to shows that were built for quantity, for mass consumption, and that’s not why I built it, I made the show for you, just you and me. That’s the whole show.
And I think I spent so much time should-ing on myself and telling myself, “Oh, well you’ve got to hit these crazy numbers. You’ve got to hit these massive, massive numbers,” way earlier than I hit some of those numbers, and I did eventually hit some of those numbers. But when I got there, it mattered a whole lot more because it was converting into other things.
And the download number, as exciting as it is, a couple of months ago, we unimaginably tripled our podcast month over month, and they’ve stayed that high, which is incredible, and I’m so glad that you’re here, but that’s not the point. That’s only exciting and helpful because it’s also generated leads, and that’s what matters, is it’s supporting my business.
I want you to not compare your show to other shows, especially if those other shows do not have the same goals you have, do not have the same function you have, and if you don’t understand any of that, then go listen to 499, because we talk about that.
All right, that’s it. That’s the whole show for episode 500, in the can, one take. Let’s just pretend, okay? It’s just you and me. No one will know. Thank you for listening, thank you for spending this last half hour with me. If you would like to talk more about your podcast and growing your podcast, and seeing more impact with your podcast, talk strategically about your podcast, make sure you head over to uncommonlymore.com. I’m really, really excited for this next 500 episodes, this next year of podcasting, this next year of helping other podcasters launch and grow their own shows. It’s really the most fun I’ve had in a really long time. All right, that’s it, sap over. I’ll talk to you next week for 501. See, it’s like we’re starting all over now. All right, bye.