Speaker 1 00:00:05 Hello, and welcome back to the audience podcast. I'm your host Craig Hewitt from castoffs this week, I'm joined by Brian Barletta from the sound's profitable newsletter. Brian has an extraordinary amount of experience and history and knowledge in the ad tech space. And so today we're going to be talking all about podcasts, advertising, podcasts, advertising technology, kind of the landscape there, and how us as podcasters can think about monetizing our show or providing rich content and dynamic content in our podcast episodes via ads and dynamic ad content. So with that, here's my conversation with Brian Barletta,
Speaker 1 00:00:42 Brian Barletta. Welcome to the show. How's it going? It's good. It's good. Thanks for having me. Yeah. Yeah. Excited to chat. We got a chance to chat. Uh, I dunno a couple weeks ago, maybe just for the holidays. And I think it's great to get, to get a chance to kind of get to know somebody before doing an interview because now, like, I feel like we can dive straight in and go to like podcast advertising two Oh one level stuff. Uh, which I think is a lot of what we're going to talk about today. So you are, uh, kind of the person behind the sound's profitable email newsletter kind of paired up with James Cridland from pod news, putting out a lot of awesome content around podcasts, advertising the advertising kind of industry as it relates to podcasting. And you've not been at it that long, but you have kind of a pedigree in this background from a previous work-life right?
Speaker 2 00:01:28 Yeah. Yeah. So the newsletter started in September, 2020 after I left megaphone in August, I was a senior product manager of data and monetization there and it was, it was great, but it wasn't what I was looking for. And so I left there before there, I was one of the founding members of barometric, which was acquired by Claritas. And so that was podcast attribution. And then before that I had about six years in the general ad tech space, mostly focused on like mobile devices, rich media and, and things like that. But yeah, the, the newsletter writing is pretty new, but it's fun. And it makes me laugh. You, you stumbled on like that. Like the person behind sounds profitable, everybody's like, what's your title? And I was like, do I need a title for a one person company? I guess CEA editor, CEO of what that's like when I had a VP title and I had nobody under me, it's I think we're focused on this up, but yeah, I mean, it sounds profitable as a, it's my way of trying to be the sales engineer and the product manager for the entire space to educate all these people.
Speaker 2 00:02:25 Maybe not the best first step for people though. I am working on making things successful. So if someone wants to self-educate, they can catch up. But the truth of it is, is like, if you're in this space, we've all been told. Ad tech is complicated. It's really, you need special experience. And my goal is to say, Nope, that's not true. There's a handful of people trying to gate keep it. It's accessible to all of you. And you can do some really amazing things on a revenue side, really amazing things on a creative side and just prepare yourself whether you're an advertiser, a agency, a hosting platform, ad tech company, or publisher. Like there's so many different ways that you can learn about how all this is, so that you bring forward your best creative execution,
Speaker 1 00:03:07 Our kind of single biggest demographic of folks that listen to this show would be kind of like the kind of advanced hobbyist podcaster. That's, that's a, that's a mouthful, but like the person who has been podcasting for a while has some traction and wants to level up. And as they get starting to think about advertising for their podcast, I know that like a lot of folks myself included are just deer in the headlights. When you say, I don't want to go like sell directly to my friends and companies that I know, I think it's weird. I don't like selling, I don't want to send an invoice to anybody, but like I know that advertising and kind of monetizing my podcast via ads is one of the most kind of like generally accepted ways for folks to make money by podcasting. But like from knowing that and having a podcast that has some traction to actually getting to like the other side of the rainbow to me, seems like just a huge step.
Speaker 1 00:03:59 And I know like in talking to our customers and stuff, it's just like this monumental thing. And I think it's why anchor saw so much success in sees so much successes. They just make it so easy, right? Like whether it's the best way to go about that or not. Like, I think in a lot of ways, it's probably not, but it just makes it, you, you use the term accessible, like it makes it so accessible for people just to click a button, anchor search ads in there, and you potentially make some money. But for folks that like aren't hosted on anchor and are hosted on something like cast dos and want to like start advertising or having advertising on their show, like, what are some things that you like to encourage people to think about as they start going down this path?
Speaker 2 00:04:39 Yeah. I think the first thing I always emphasize is why are you doing this right? If your goal is to make money off of it, then you have to have less barriers, right? Like if you want to out the gate, start making money on podcasts, first off, you either have to put money into it so that people pay attention to your podcast. So it's big enough so that you can sell it or you have to partner with a place that will handle that promotion for you and selling, or you just have to give somebody full reign like you can do with anchor or even a cast. And I guess Dax Triton ads was all of these partners that can programmatically fill or do host read sales, another great one's red circle. And so these are, that's kind of the, the hard part there is like, do you have to figure out why you're doing this?
Speaker 2 00:05:24 And it's so Caden not do ads. Like I love ad tech because I think the technology is really neat. And I love helping people earn money and do creative things with it. But not every podcast has to monetize and monetization doesn't have to be what we think it is. I hate selling. And it's very funny as starting a newsletter where I have zero desire to charge anyone to learn from me. The number one thing I've realized is that if I'm going to go that way and I'm going look for sponsorship, I have to sell to these people, these companies. And it's awful. I like, if I look back at my first like five sponsors, I asked to come on board, it's like, I'm sorry to bother you. I know it's a big ask. And now I'm just like, Hey, here's a cool value I provide.
Speaker 2 00:06:03 It would be really cool to have you associated with it. And you just get more comfortable because the first sponsor that first relationship really, um, I don't know it validates you, but the thing I want to stress is that like, before you even think about like, do I have advertisements, you need to think about what type of money you want to get out of it. Is it, you know, on a pay for a really nice meal once a week, is it I want to do a car payment. I want to do my mortgage payment or do I want to quit my job? And as you scale up, it's either luck or investment that gets you there, right? If you want to quit your job, then your podcast better be huge. Um, Jordan harbinger is a great example of that. That guy puts a ton of money and effort into growing this podcasts, a substantial amount of what he makes goes back into his podcast to grow his audience and increases downloads.
Speaker 2 00:06:48 So he can continue to charge a higher and higher premium for his podcasts. And it's very successful. But you know, the first go around that circle starts with you investing until you make enough money to recoup that would you then just have to keep reinvesting until eventually you are at a point where not only did you recoup, but you also have the next round, the next circle of money to invest. But I think that a neat thing that people need to start thinking about is it doesn't always have to be about money, right? A sponsor could be someone that you bring on and then exchange, they promote you. They do some advertising for you. They have a reach to an audience that you'd like to get in front of where they have cool stuff. You know, I'm talking a lot with the guys over at podcast Outfitters and they got a lot of ideas around what if they could offer people who are talking to podcasters and the podcasting space, a great deal on buying the equipment themselves, and then being able to do like referrals, right. And, and take a commission percentage. So I think you need to figure out where you want to be advertising wise, and then you have to realize that advertising can be as creative as your podcast. So think outside the box, ask for things that help and remember that money. Isn't the answer to everything.
Speaker 1 00:07:57 Yeah. I think that a lot of folks, and maybe it's just like the, the vocal minority that is just like, I want to make money from podcasts and I quit my job or, you know, because of COVID I got laid off and now I'm a podcast or, and I want to make money from this and I need to make rent from my podcast for folks in like, that's, that's like fall at the far end of that spectrum. Right. For folks that are wanting to kind of go down that path, like, what does that playbook look like from, from your experience?
Speaker 2 00:08:24 Oh, I mean, I think that's a shot reality, first thing in the morning, like, I don't mean to be harsh about that, but like, I would love to play video games all day or run tabletop RPGs. Like I, it would be amazing to me, the fact that I have the opportunity to write about podcasts, ad tech, and then I, you know, four months into it, we have over 2000 subscribers and it's doing well enough that this is my full-time job and I can be not tied to any specific company. So I'm in a really unique situation where I'm, I'm not like watching what I say, because I don't have to worry about who I offend that luck. I think luck is preparedness plus opportunity. I was prepared to talk about it. It was the right time. People wanted to look and there was a hole for it.
Speaker 2 00:09:02 If your podcast is yet another podcast with two white dudes talking about their opinions on comic books, like you gotta be real with yourself. And just because you bought an MV seven doesn't mean that you're like a professional podcast or any more than because I bought a bicycle means I'm a professional cyclist and that's that hard truth, right there is it's okay for something to be a hobby. And it's okay for your hobby to turn into a career or a business and things like that. But anybody who starts any business that wants something to be a career needs to know that you, you have to dive both feet in you can't sit there and kind of test it out and wait for your big break to come and get you. Right. No, one's going to listen to your podcasts and call you up and say, this is amazing. I'd like you to be the next show Rogan. So that's the hard part
Speaker 1 00:09:45 I'm laughing because that is the consistent advice that we get on this podcast from a lot of different types of people from different parts of like digital media. And that's really reassuring that like it's hard work. It takes dedication. There's no easy button. There's no shortcut because I think that what that does, it weeds out naturally a lot of pretenders, right? People that, that don't really care don't want to put in the hard work aren't dedicated to their craft. And so the folks that are, and hopefully we are, are going to able, going to be able to, to kind of rise to the top through time and sweat and an execution that like we can kind of become successful just by sticking with it and being dedicated to it.
Speaker 2 00:10:25 I want to say that those like long tail, as it's like to be quoted, uh, the, you know, yet another D and D podcast style thing. It's not bad. Like if you're having fun and like your four friends and your mom are listening to it and you guys are having fun, making it, like, do it. Like nobody, nobody ever goes to someone who like bruised their own beer and be like, why don't you just buy it? Like, things don't have to be like, hobbies are expensive. People who get into model planes and, and weird other things. Like I have a crazy collection of Dungeons and dragons and other tabletop books that I spend too much money on. And that's my hobby and that's as okay. I'm invested in it and it's fun, but I don't ever get angry that I'm not able to, to pull money out of it.
Speaker 2 00:11:05 So I think that's, that's really the line. I would never tell somebody not to be a podcaster, but if you just replace podcasts or with like brain surgeon and all the posts on Reddit about like, I want to be a podcaster, you know, like how goofy does it need to go to go get that training? Go get the focus, go work for somebody. And it's successful. This industry is successful. If you want to get into it, you super can. But I think the coolest thing is if you have something truly valuable to say related to your career, not related to podcasts as a career, but like I started the newsletter simply because I wanted people to remember, we'll talk about the stuff and remember the stuff. But while I was trying to figure out what I wanted to do next, before I settled on the newsletter I was writing. So people would remember me and reach out to me and we would have conversations. And that's, if your podcast is you between jobs and you want to talk about the expertise that excites you, and you want to use it as part of a resume, like that's killer, there are so many great uses for it. The don't equate to actually depositing a check, but can lead to revenue in life-changing events.
Speaker 1 00:12:09 Absolutely agree. Yeah. I mean, the things for us that that podcasting has led to, I mean, this company is because I started a podcast and that's, it's pretty cool. So kind of like switching gears a little bit to kind of specifically like the ad tech space. I know it's like where you're an expert. So I want to kind of share as much of kind of your, your awesome knowledge with the audience as we can just generally like here in the beginning of 2021, like, what do you see in the ad tech space for podcasting that you're really jazzed about? Like that you say, Ooh, this is like, this is it. I think
Speaker 2 00:12:38 That dynamic ad insertion is a really big idea and it's not a new idea, but it's a big thing that I hope becomes kind of a standard. And in 2021. And so dynamic ad insertion is basically instead of your podcast being one single file that everybody downloads the same exact file at the time of download it, determines what specific ads to place into it. And that's really neat because that means that you're not locked in. If you do an advertisement today, then five years from now, people are still downloading that episode. But Casper mattress gets our free ride on all those downloads. It means you can sell campaigns against all downloads within a 90 day period and take advantage of the people who download your back catalog. Even daily news podcasts still have people accessing their back catalog and even not about advertisement and things like that.
Speaker 2 00:13:25 If you have three seasons of an audio drama and you got picked up for a book deal, how cool would it be? If it's the, for someone starting on like season one and you can throw in an ad in the, from the future that says like, Hey, I'm really glad that you like this. We just got a book deal. You can check out the audio book or this, or, Oh, who knows, there'll be a movie deal too. And you can keep people up to date on what's happening now, even though your content that they're listening to might be older. So there's just a lot of flexibility in that. I mean, heck even if you re like, as a host, like dynamic ad insertion, doesn't need to be on announcer read. I don't need to record the ad for your podcast. And it feel jarring and different.
Speaker 2 00:14:05 Like here's like the easiest low-hanging fruit, so many podcasts out there, like mob be back after the break and then they just go and we're back. And there's no ad and that's super embarrassing. Maybe not to the general public, but to people in the space, you're just like, Oh, they can't sell their inventory. And what happens if you just took that bit of audio and you put that into your ad. So the music fades out. There's no ad it fates back in. There's no goofy and we're back. But if there's an ad, it goes and we'll be back after the break. Pause. Let me tell you about, you know, Brian sneaker company, and then it's all bundled together. So it just flows a little bit better. It's more accessible. That's really the big one that I think is going to have a lot of value.
Speaker 1 00:14:45 I feel like, and this is maybe to play devil's advocate a little bit. I feel like they, like the idea of ad insertion has certainly been around for like a long time. Right. And I don't mean to be like disrespectful. I feel like it's a little bit like crypto, right? Where like, we've been saying like, Oh, blockchain is going to revolutionize the world. And like, we're all going to be living on blockchain based stuff. And for the large part, none of that has happened. Right. And like, maybe it's, cause I'm not like a believer in advertising as like the primary method to monetize your show. And I know that it's like dynamic added search has really dynamic content insertion, so it doesn't have to be ads. But like, do you feel that the promise of dynamic ad insertion hasn't like lived up in reality or like in execution so far? Or is it that we're still so early and that we are some of the like hundred people in the world that, that actually really get this stuff. And so like, we're just hyper sensitive to its trajectory. I think,
Speaker 2 00:15:43 I think the crypto examples not awful, and I'm not super insulted by that, but nobody's, you know, losing their password and losing access to millions of dollars. Yeah. Kills me, kills me. I think I'm trying to figure out a better way to explain it. Imagine if you had a store, it was just you running the store and you were killing it and you were making a great living, selling 20% of all the items in your store. And the other 80% of your store just had empty shelves, right? Because you didn't need to stock anything you're doing so well with that 20%, it's keeping everything alive. And all of that, I think dynamic ad insertion is taking a look at that whole a hundred percent, right. People are doing well enough, right? We're only at a 1.3 or 1.4 billion worldwide in advertising spend in podcast. Nobody's selling out a hundred percent of their podcasts unless they're reducing the number of ads or getting really creative on what it means.
Speaker 2 00:16:31 You know, one, instead of like I have 12 ad slots, it's I have three sponsors. So I think the reason why people haven't dug into it is that they're doing fine with the inventory that I have. But I think that there's a lot of opportunity. I don't, I don't think it's necessarily like, I love ad tech, but if you're not pulling a paycheck from a 401k based company in podcasts industry, like keep in mind, stay educated in it, but don't worry about it. If you're at Wondery, if you're at megaphone, if you're at the New York times, like it should be a priority because you need to optimize and take care of everything. You need to worry about brand safety. You need to worry about accessibility from the big agencies and advertisers that want to buy from you in their very specific ways with their very specific tools.
Speaker 2 00:17:14 But that's, that's kind of the audience that I'm talking to. I'm talking to the people that are in those spaces and the people that want to be in the space. He's like I said, it's successful checkout. You know, I think it's pod jobs, pod.jobs from pod news. There are so many people hiring for technical roles of junior levels, ad ops, uh, sales, production, everything in podcasting. So this stuff is, is easily accessible. People can get into the space, but I actually agree with you on the fact that, you know, advertising doesn't have to be everything, um, super casts and memorable are two great podcasts, specific subscription models that allow you to offer exclusive content and things like that. You're five years into your podcast. And you want to tell the people who are started listening on year one about the thing that you just released in your fifth year dynamic ad insertion helps you do that.
Speaker 2 00:18:02 Or, you know what, Hey, maybe you want to download five years of podcasts, reedit them. And re-upload all of them. Maybe that's more efficient for you, but this is using technology to take care of something. This is in the same way that we need to move off of like Google sheets and onto things like notion and, uh, Salesforce and other CRMs like dynamic ad insertion creates some accountability and some structure behind it and not everybody needs it, but that's, I think it does add a lot of value at the, like the mid to high end of podcasts.
Speaker 1 00:18:32 Yeah. I love that idea of like taking a look at the hundred percent of your kind of availability because I, yeah, even, even people that I know that have sponsors on their podcast, they out there, a lot of them are not using dynamic ad insertion. They're kind of manually stitching in the ads that only happens once. And if they want to go change it, they have to create it and upload it. And you're not taking advantage of like the new message or the new advertiser on the old content. Yeah. I really like it.
Speaker 2 00:18:58 And that brand safety is my favorite one. What happens if that brand becomes racist? Right? Like not Gladwell on one of his podcasts had a Fiji water on there and the feedback he got of like how much Fiji water sucks was so aggressive that he removed the ad in real time. Right? Dynamic answers. Should you go in there? Pause, done ads done to me. Like that's, that's like a really powerful thing. And so if you have a sponsor over your three or five-year podcasts and they came in at different months, would you have a notebook that tells you what monster in their awful company? Now you want to remove them. You got to relisten to every single one of your episodes. There's no win. They're just tools to protect yourself and take care of things and do cool creative things. Heck you start a new podcast and you want to, instead of doing a full episode, drop into a different feed, now you can put that content as like, Hey, and stay, stay after for the end of the show to hear a little bit from podcasts XYZ. So it's, it's a neat tool. Again, none of it's necessary if people are either enjoying themselves as a hobby or making enough money would baked in, we're just talking about fine tuning. We're talking about the things that, that can bring you to the next level and open things up at the end of the day, every single podcast out there can very easily like have dynamic ad insertion set up and still do host read ads without any problem.
Speaker 1 00:20:16 One of the things that I know folks come to us, a lot of her, you know, here in the community, around us, like advertising and wanting to have like strong alignment between like their brand and their message and the, the sponsors that they have on their show. As you look at kind of like the dynamic ad space, like what are some options or things people can think about to, to kind of ensure the highest kind of level of I'll say like congruency between like their message and their brand. You're talking about Malcolm Gladwell and in Fiji water, like, so things like that don't happen. Like what, what are things that people should be looking at from like a strategic or like actual, like tactical perspective to optimize that
Speaker 2 00:20:54 The first part is you need to either sell it yourself or work with someone who's aligned with that. Like, um, add large cabana is a great example of Midroll is a great example for the higher end. Um, true native media. All of these are like publisher reps. They'll talk with you and understand exactly what you're trying to accomplish. And then there'll be able to help you sell and maintain your vision. They'll give you, or they'll bring you ads and you get to have some creative say on them, right? How do I want to say it? Can I change some of the copy? You know, do I want to just reject this, but just keep in mind that if you pick a partner or you have a bring a sales person on and you reject enough ads that person's going to leave, that company is going to leave.
Speaker 2 00:21:28 It's not going to be a lot of options. If, if you keep saying no to money, there's no reason for the people bringing you opportunities to say they'll find somebody else. So that's the first one for programmatic, which I think you're talking a little bit more of, which is the idea of like making that ad call accessible to marketplaces that are out there that are a little more automated with announcer read. You can really fine tune things. So you could set it that you need to creatively approve every single ad that is eligible to be served on you. Now, the hard part there is there's so many ads, there's so much inventory that by the time you approve it, they might be spent, right. They might be spent for the day or the month or whatever. So, you know, that's a little bit more management work and that's a little bit more risk of earning revenue, but you have that control.
Speaker 2 00:22:10 The step peeled back a little bit is you can set your IAB, the internet advertising Bureau, your categories for what categories your podcast is and what categories you're not interested in. You didn't even list in block domains. If you say, I never want a political campaign, that's a checkbox. If you say Domino's pizza killed my parents and you never want to work with them, you can do Domino's dot com is blocked. So there's a lot of ways you can go about it. But the thing you need to remember is that none of these are perfect tools. And the second that you directly step away from it, there is room for error. You need to be prepared for that. You need to accept it. And that's part of making money.
Speaker 1 00:22:46 So I think that's a, it's an important kind of clarification is like programmatic ad insertion is like a platform or computer figuring out which ads to, to take and you know, who wins the bid and what gets inserted into your podcast. Whereas more of a kind of statically oriented. What's the proper term. They're like
Speaker 2 00:23:06 Dynamic ad insertion is focused on my ad server, my hosting platform as a podcaster and the ads that I put in there, I manually upload the MP3. I set the conditions to target off of things like geo off of their device off of time of day, all these cool different things. And either I recorded the audio or someone gave me an audio that I approved and upload that's the dynamic ad. Insertion is an ad server. Programmatic is my ad services. Do I have an ad that ad says, ah, yes, I'm ready to fill. And it goes up. I don't have a file. I'm going to call a programmatic partner like Triton digital as was Dax, all these partners out there. And I'm going to ask them do have an ad for me. And it sends that information. Now programmatic's really wide. There's a lot of options you can use programmatic to just be direct sales, right?
Speaker 2 00:23:53 NPR is a great example of that. NPR. Doesn't just allow someone to stuff in a creative and send it over to them and it goes live. They use it to say, you want to use a tool like the trade desk, which is a real big programmatic purchasing tool, right? A lot of big media companies have a counselor at the trade desk. They use it to manage all of their ad spend across everything. So I'm on the trade desk. I'm on a buy from NPR. I initiate the request through programmatic. They have to approve it. They NPR actually records. The audio, sends it to that client who then enters it into their system and spits it back out to MPR that is using programmatic to do direct sales full control. Great way if you're a control freak, or if you have specific ethics or guidelines that you're following the other, the complete opposite end.
Speaker 2 00:24:39 And there's two steps in between that. We'll just skip over because it's just nuanced. It's not necessary is open marketplace. That call goes out and says, I am X. I want to exclude Y my price minimum is Z. And anything that comes through that matches that that will get served on that show. Based on that real time download and the, you know, between programmatic and dynamic ad insertion doing it yourself, there's a concept of second seed sellers, right? That's either a company like the ones I mentioned that will provide campaigns and provide them to you that you manually flight or tools like red circle. And I think it's sounder FM that, uh, you know, have these options for people to use their platform, to purchase ads that go directly into their, or communicate directly with you. They represent megaphones. MTM is another great example by hosting with them, they're helping sell your inventory and it's not direct sales and it's not programmatic, but they're not selling it as granular as you are, or as, you know, obvious skated and kind of wide as programmatic one.
Speaker 2 00:25:41 So a lot's option. And this is why it's so confusing. And that's why it's been so fun to write about it because people, your programmatic and they're like, I don't want just any ad. And then people that are dynamic ad insertion, and then say, I don't want an announcer reading an ad on my show. And that's the nuance that we talked about the Bitcoin or the store example is, do you really need to do that? And the answer is unless you're selling out of inventory, unless you're looking to forecast, maybe you don't and that's okay. Do you have dates
Speaker 1 00:26:06 On an industry level about like the percentage of podcasts that have dynamic or programmatic ad kind of in them, or like that are utilizing the technology?
Speaker 2 00:26:16 So you could figure that out by hosting providers, Daniel J. Lewis with, um, I think it's like rate my podcast is killer at podcast data, and you can figure out that, like, if they're on megaphone, then megaphone offers dynamic ad insertion, and that's a great way to look at it. But you know, then the, the other side of it is like Libsyn pro offers dynamic ad insertion, but you can't really differentiate between Libsyn and Libsyn pro on that level. Also, there are some major publishers tech platforms that offer dynamic ad insertion that do not use dynamic ad insertion. So the short answer is you could guess the long answer is that everybody thinks that this like big secrets and they need to hide all their information. And like, we got to grow up. We got to get away from that, which is so hard because it's such a salesy space.
Speaker 2 00:27:02 And it's like, I can't share, I can't be exposed like that. What happened? What will my competitors think? We're finding out when my product deep dive series, which is let's ask tough questions, let's dig into how these products work and let's show it to the world for free on demand that your competitors can't just steal your ideas. They can't steal your data. They can't use it against you in a way that's going to put you out of business because they're too busy with their own bullshit. They're too busy with all the stuff on their plate, in their plans. And if they decided to stop what they were doing to come like, copy you or attack your space or something like that, they're going to go out of business because that means they're not serving their current customers in an attempt to kind of take over yours. So the short is, there's not a lot of data on things like this because people are too tight lipped. But the truth is, is even in like traditional digital ad tech, outside of podcasting, it's even worse. There's way less communication. We are for a place that I'm talking about it. That is very tight-lipped for podcasts, advertising, and podcasts, uh, ad tech. We are way friendlier than any other ad tech scene.
Speaker 1 00:28:01 I love to ask about like, kind of your journey as a founder and a creator of, of the sound's profitable newsletter and kind of business. Cause I know like going from working at megaphone big company kind of stuff to kind of being like solo founder and starting this thing just in the last few months, especially during like a really tumultuous time, like how has that been like, and how has, how has that journey kind of differed from what your expectations were when you got started?
Speaker 2 00:28:25 I set my expectations really low. I think that I was really scared. It's not easy. It's really not easy to start things off. I think that if I would have started three or four months earlier, I think I could have been completely missed. I think I could be scraping by, I don't, it's so scary every day, but it's also exciting, right? Because I get to determine what I do every day and I can either stick by my principles or make money and I'll be real the first month or two, I took contracts for the weirdest things, stuff that wasn't even podcast related because I was like, I got to put money away so that we're okay. I have a two year old, I have another kid on the way we were set up to make this a tough long journey. I think the hardest part is just realizing that like all your success can go away overnight.
Speaker 2 00:29:09 Don't take it for granted work very hard. Don't get frustrated if it doesn't blow up right away. And it doesn't become something that sustains you and be willing to like take it as a learning experience. I think that if I was ever interviewing for someone and you know, they started their own company and then they stopped after nine months and they could explain what they learned from it and what they gain from it and why they were going back in the market. That would be as impressive as, Oh, I, you know, I built it and I sold it.
Speaker 1 00:29:35 Yeah. The lessons you learned along the way, craft kind of who you are. Yeah.
Speaker 2 00:29:37 Yeah. But I think the biggest thing is pay it forward and make as many connections as possible and talk to people and ask first how you can help them. Because I think that there there's a lot of people out there that their first question is like, what can you do for me? And how can I make money off of you? And I think some of my best friendships and the most success I've had in the space where people where I just asked, what can I do for you? Like, Hey, this is so cool. I'm writing about this stuff. I'd love your input, but I'd love to learn more about what you're doing. I'd love to figure out if I can give any advice or suggestions. And I don't know, it's, it's risky and it's scary. I don't think there's ever a right time. There's plenty of wrong times. And I don't think you learn that until you've failed
Speaker 1 00:30:17 With another kid on the way is not, uh, not the best time for sure.
Speaker 2 00:30:20 I probably wouldn't have picked it if I would've known, we expected it to take a little bit longer for a kid to, but, uh, yeah, we, I started this like probably about two or three months before we found out we were
Speaker 1 00:30:31 That's cool. Nothing quite like that to motivate you. So that's a, maybe a hidden blessing. Yeah. What does the future look like for you? Like, I know you're six or eight months into it at this point, like four months. We're four months in September. Yeah. Okay. So four months.
Speaker 2 00:30:45 Well, but COVID, you COVID, it's like four years, right? Like it's terrible, isn't it?
Speaker 1 00:30:52 So four months you have just enough kind of like data and perspective to kind of really know where you are at this point and like kind of where, where the businesses and everything, but like w where do you see the newsletter and kind of the brand going from here? Like what is the next year or so look like,
Speaker 2 00:31:08 I think I want to see how the product deep dives go. Right. I want to see how the response to that is I got a lot of buy-in from a lot of big companies that their tech is amazing and what they offer is super cool and they have great customer service, but their press releases are confusing and their website doesn't explain their product. And I'm really excited to see the public response from that. I mean, our first one launched in like December 16th or 17th, and it has 300 unique views, which is really cool. It was a very small company called pod scribe. That's trying to get like their best foot forward. And, you know, 300 unique views is probably a few more people than they would have had demo the platform in the last 30 days. So to me, like, that's, that was really cool that I could do that.
Speaker 2 00:31:49 I want to figure out how to reach more people that are, you know, junior level and help them become senior level and decision makers. I want to empower decision makers to learn more about the soften and educate their teams and change the way they think about things. Uh, so the newsletter is definitely my main focus. I think that it's so rewarding to be able to write about these things and think about them and, and just kind of explore what questions people have. I read a lot of my articles based on like questions that people send me that I think would be good articles for people to continuously reference. So I think that the future really is figuring out how I can educate more people. And ultimately my goal is to create and empower more people, to be a peer with me and ad tech. I'm a college dropout.
Speaker 2 00:32:34 I am not an engineer. I wanted to be a history teacher. It did not work out very well. And, um, I'd like to see less white bearded men in our space, especially as like thought leaders. So more than anything, I want to just educate and help and, and be an advocate for all of these people that deserve a seat at the table, so that maybe I can take a step back, right. Maybe they can be partners with me on this stuff. Maybe we can figure out new avenues. So I think it's all about education. That's my, that's my real growth. I think that I'm on a, I'm on a path that this is sustainable for me and being super real. The coolest part about it is starting to realize that there may be a point where I can maybe work a little bit less than actually live. And that's, it's kinda neat, right. Kind of spend my days hanging out with the kids, listen to podcasts, writing cool articles and talking to amazing people. Sounds like my dream jobs.
Speaker 1 00:33:24 That's really cool to hear the, the vision and everything. I think you're absolutely on the right path there. Brian, for folks who want to kind of check out more about the newsletter and you, and kind of what trip do what where's the best place.
Speaker 2 00:33:34 Absolutely. So sounds profitable.com will be the hub for everything. I also recommend people check out pod news.net. If you're not already subscribed to it really great way to keep up to date on the entire podcast industry on a daily basis, it sounds profitable. It comes out once a week from sounds profitable.com. You can see the deep dives you can find out about the podcast. That's going to go live at the end of January and everything I do will be on there and accessible a hundred percent free, always. So definitely check it out. I'd love to have, you know, you and your audience as subscribers. So
Speaker 1 00:34:07 Yeah, I can attest, we subscribed. That's fantastic. And you're putting out great stuff. So keep it up and, uh, yeah. Thanks for sharing a little bit about kind of what you're up to and everything with, with listeners. I appreciate it. Yeah. Thank you so much.
Speaker 0 00:34:18 Yeah.