Speaker 1 00:00:05 What would you say if I told you that with the right structure and the right offering, that you could monetize your podcast through digital goods or direct ad sales for the listenership that isn't even on the same radar as the top 50 podcast in iTunes and in a market that during a global pandemic would be the last podcast you thought would be thriving. Well today in another installment of Castillo's creators, one of our very own cast, those customers chip close proves me wrong. He's the host of the restaurant strategy podcast, a podcast. Well, you guessed it that focuses on helping the courageous restaurant tour grow. Nate survive in these trying times, he's done it all in the food industry, and now he's taking it to his podcast to help others and share his podcast monetization framework with us today from client services to downloadable digital goods, today's discussion should satisfy your podcast appetite. You're listening to the audience podcast, your home to stories and lessons for podcasters, looking to take their show to the next level for people just getting started with podcasting to brands and celebrities monetizing their audio experience. The audience podcast has it all, never missed another show by subscribing at castles.com/subscribe that's <inaudible> dot com slash subscribe. Okay, let's meet chip close of restaurant strategy, podcast.com.
Speaker 1 00:01:21 Everybody. Welcome back to the audience podcast. Another special edition for the creator spotlight today. Chip close chip. Welcome to the pro.
Speaker 2 00:01:29 Yeah, thanks for having me on. I appreciate you taking the time to chat with me
Speaker 1 00:01:32 Only hit the century Mark as a podcaster. Obviously you're a Castle's customer. That's why we're having that conversation. Hint, hint, wink, wink, or anybody who's listening, who says, boy, I'd like to be on the creator spotlight series as well. You got to get a ticket and that ticket is [email protected]
. Lots of things I want to dive into hitting the century, Mark hitting the hundred episodes published for a podcast. Or as you mentioned in the pre interview, it's no easy feat and it isn't a, what is it? Or what does that big lesson that you learned on consistency? How do you keep yourself going after a hundred?
Speaker 2 00:02:05 Yeah. You know, it's about staying organized. I mean, in the beginning I had just set a goal for myself. So, you know, I'm going to, I'm going to podcast every single week for the first year. And that challenged me to get organized, to think about what are the kinds of things that people want to hear about what are the things that I'm qualified to talk about? Where's that intersection and just, you know, hitting record every single week and putting yourself, uh, setting yourself up for success to do that well again, anticipating, you know, say, okay, I'm going to be going away this time. I'm going to just always kind of having stuff kind of wind up in the hopper so that you knew where you were going to go next. That was the biggest thing. Just, just getting organized around that. So I was never at a shortage of ideas,
Speaker 1 00:02:48 Words of advice from chip at episode one versus chip at episode 100, if you could jump and jump into that DeLorean, go back in time and say, what would you tell as you hit record on episode one, knowing what, you know,
Speaker 2 00:03:02 Man, it's a, it's a great question. Um, not to put pressure on myself every single week to have, you know, great mindblowing content, but just to create value just to say, you know, what are people curious about? What are people struggling with? And I think if I listened to that a little bit more in the beginning, you know, just solve little problems for people, just speak to people where they are and just, you know, just move them a little bit at a time, a little bit of the time. If you could just move the needle for your audience a little bit, every single week, you know, by the end of a few months, by the end of the year, they will have come a long distance. And I think, you know, just helping your, uh, your audience come along a little bit further down the road every single week. I that's, that's the advice I would give myself in the beginning, not, not to come up with some jaw dropping piece of content every single week,
Speaker 1 00:03:50 Consider yourself, you know, back at episode one, to again, to where you're at today, did you ever get into this game thinking that you're going to be a content creator? Where are you a content creator to begin with recent headlines? Because that's all we read these days as, as Americans is a Martin Scorsese was sort of ripping into the movie industry with a lot of these filmmakers these days. And the audience at large is calling movies and feature length films, content sort of devaluing the effort that is put into creating these magnificent storytelling, feature, length films that people put blood, sweat, and tears into. Did you ever consider yourself a content creator? Do you even like the term, do you resonate with that term these days?
Speaker 2 00:04:32 I do like the term just fine. I didn't start off to be that I didn't expect it was going to be something. I was really scratching my own itch. You know, I've been in the restaurant industry for 20 years and the last five of those years I was working as a consultant as a coach. And what I was finding is that I was saying the same things over and over and over and over again. And I just thought there was a way to get these lessons out to a broader audience. And I just thought if I can just say the things that I'm saying to these people one-on-one to a, to a broader audience, I think I can make a bigger impact. And I just went and took all the lessons. I was doing all the exercises that I was doing with my restaurant clients, with the chefs and operators that I work with.
Speaker 2 00:05:15 And I just started putting them into podcast format. And so I guess, you know, I was doing that already, but, but not in the form of this, you know, not in any kind of consistent way, you know, like a blog or a YouTube channel or a podcast, you know, certainly the way it is now. And now I've taken a more systematic approach to, to that. But, um, it's interesting. You brought up the Scorsese thing. I hadn't heard that quote, but it is interesting. It does. It does kind of devalue what certain things are, but the lines are getting blurred all over the place. Right?
Speaker 1 00:05:43 The reason why is because we are saturated with so many options, who's to say that your audience will tune into your podcast restaurant strategy, a marketing podcast, that is the name of it versus their favorite Netflix show or the news cha or the S or the Superbowl, or like, you know, there's so much from clubhouse to YouTube, to Instagram stories, to podcast, it's a feature length films again, and the term content just covers it all. And what happens is it's just like, it just takes this blanket statement approach, and next thing you know, we're all just like, what's the difference between a burger from McDonald's versus a, you know, a burger from a fine dining restaurant, right? And people would just get lost in it's just the burger. Right. But, you know, as somebody who's in the industry that, well, there's a lot more to the story of how this is made for $25 versus $3 at Wendy's.
Speaker 2 00:06:35 I think it has a lot to do with intent. And I think this is now something that collectively, culturally, we're all starting to think about, right? Like, why am I listening to one podcast over another? Sometimes I just want to be entertained. Sometimes I want my mind to be expanded, to think about things the way I didn't think about. And sometimes like the listeners of my podcast, they're coming to me for solutions they're coming because they want other, uh, they want to connect with other people who understand what they're going for. I mean, you know, we'll get into this, but you know, it, it all does begin and end with audience, you know, who's your audience and what are they, what are they turning to you for? Right. My audience is very narrow. It's, it's a very niche audience, right? Pat Flynn, right? Famous podcaster loves to say riches in the niches.
Speaker 2 00:07:17 My group is very, very specific. I speak to them as if I was at a conference and everybody was in the know, everybody knows the secret code words. If you stumble upon my podcast and you listen to it for more than a couple of minutes, there's a good chance. You just, aren't going to understand what we're talking about and that's great. It's not for you. It's not meant to be for you. It's meant to be for somebody very specific. And so, you know, understanding why people are tuning in, I think is really important as a, as a content creator, understanding what kind of need you're feeling in your audience, right? People go to the movies to, to watch things, blow up and to watch, you know, big stories and all of that. People tune into Netflix to watch, to binge a show for something else. People tune into one podcast or one thing, one podcast. For another thing,
Speaker 1 00:07:58 If you can recall how long it took you to understand the value of the audience. I think like, obviously people come to me at castles to say, Matt, I want to make this a successful podcast. And maybe they haven't launched an episode at all yet. And they, and I tell them, well, you've got to care about the audience that sort of like goes over people's heads in the early days. They're just like, yeah, but I want a microphone. And I want to like, have this awesome looking website. At what point do you w do you recall if you do, when it was like, ah, the audience matters, did you get an email, a tweets, you know, what it made it trigger for you?
Speaker 2 00:08:33 That was something I got from the very beginning. And it was because I think, like I said, I was scratching my own itch. I was used to talking to restaurant owners to chefs, and I was speaking to them in a very specific way about very specific topics. And I want it to be able to have those conversations on a broader level too, to people beyond my city. Right. I live here in New York city. There were only so many I have contact with. There's only so many people I can impact. So audience was on the tip of my brain every single week. And so I kind of knew that now I didn't understand how important it was or just how deep I had to go. Right. Originally I was writing something for the restaurant industry. Now that's become even more niche. It's, it's small to midsize operators, it's chefs and restaurant owners.
Speaker 2 00:09:21 Originally, I thought I would be speaking to, to managers and marketers and maybe, you know, bigger companies. Nope, absolutely not. They're mom and pop restaurants. They're, you know, a small restaurants where, you know, a chef is also the owner, you know, the whole thing, right? The one guy's running the kitchen, his wife's running the front door. It's those kinds of places. So again, I just kept narrowing down, narrowing down, narrowing down. And I remember when you guys started the audience podcast, I remember thinking, yes, that's at the heart of it. It really does. It's funny on my show, I always talked about the, uh, the ABCDs of marketing and they are audience branding, competition and differentiation. It's, it's a framework for marketing, anything, uh, podcasts, food, new iPhone, a car, whatever. And it starts with audience. So I really did understand the importance of it, um, right from the beginning. And, uh, it can't be overstated.
Speaker 1 00:10:10 A lot of business owners struggle with that ability or inability to let go of, like, I don't want to say the big picture, but they build a widget and they say my widget can serve and should serve everyone. Everyone should buy my widget. Just like as creators we say, everyone should listen to our podcast. Did you ever have any fear or self doubt when you start to find yourself niching down? Like in the beginning, you're like, Oh, I'm talking to a lot of people and a big range of titles and you start filtering down. Was there any fear or wrestling with that happening?
Speaker 2 00:10:45 No, I, I really, because in fact, I was having people tell me the opposite. I said, Hey, I'm going to start a podcast going to be called restaurant strategy, takes complicated marketing concepts and does two things. It makes them understandable and actionable. That's the whole ball game. And people said, yeah, yeah. But the stuff you're talking about can be applied to any industry. And don't you think you're cutting yourself off too much? And I said, well, that's where my experiences, that's where my network is. And I think we can build an audience here. And everybody wanted me to go bigger people I was talking to. And I just thought, Nope, Nope, you're wrong. I'm going to just stay focused on restaurants. And again, my surprise was that it wasn't just people, you know, who work in restaurants, but it was even more specific. So I was already embracing it. And, and I just followed along with the way that my, um, that my audience led me as I got to know my audience, as they wrote in, as, as I heard from them and got to hear more about what they were struggling with, what they needed help with and how I could provide those solutions.
Speaker 1 00:11:40 Is there a, either a podcast or traditional television or web show, uh, other, other piece of content that you look up to from like either just like an inspirational perspective or, you know, maybe even something that, yeah, I'm trying to work myself up to be like, whatever hot ones on YouTube, right? People eating spicy chicken wings and people sweating and interviewing celebrities. Is there anything like that? That's like your North star for me.
Speaker 2 00:12:05 So, you know, what's really funny is that when I started the podcast, it started as a monologue style format. I thought I'm just going to go for 20 to 30 minutes, just snackable content. The idea was that people could listen to it on their commute. It takes me about 25, 30 minutes to take the subway into work. And I just thought I want something I can listen to on that commute. So I started doing that and I started filtering in some, uh, some interviews here and there, but I knew I didn't want to do a lot of them. I figured there were a ton of interview shows out there and, uh, w we don't need another interview show now to my great surprise. And the first hundred episodes I've done, 16 interviews, and four of them are in the top four are in the top 10 rather.
Speaker 2 00:12:44 So I learned from my audience and I just thought, okay, they want to hear more interviews. They want to hear more perspectives than just what I have to offer. So I've challenged myself to, uh, to broaden out and to do more interviews. So I'm listening to more interview shows and trying to break out and say, okay, how can I do something different? Who were the people I really love? And you know, who I love is the moment with Brian Koppelman. He is such a great interviewer. I just, if he has notes, I don't see them. If he has an agenda for the interview, I don't know it. He just asks really great questions. I think he stays curious. And so I'm trying to take a page from him as, as I'm challenging myself, to bring more interviews to the listeners and to try to really tease out really great insights, uh, you know, things that will help them, you know, beyond just the things that, you know, again, there, there are so many, so many podcasts out there. We don't need another, another tip, another trick, another tool, another tactic, I think we really need to go deeper. And so Brian Koppelman, man, he just, he's so good at what he does.
Speaker 1 00:13:43 Yeah. I agree. A hundred percent. I love the way that he guides a conversation and I love the way that he is a great interrupter of the guests. And we'll keep either keep them back on track. There's so many episodes I've listened to, well, not so many, but there's at least a handful. Where will people start, will start asking him about the show, billions, which he was either the main creator or the co-creator of, you know, I'm able to start diving into asking him about that experience. He's like, look, this, this conversation is not about me. Like what you are here to talk about your conversation. And I love that sort of take on it. And there's so much to be said about filtering down this audience. Like we don't need another interview podcast, but we might need these insights in your case, particularly from the restaurant industry, and then even get hyper-focused within the restaurant and industry.
Speaker 1 00:14:26 There is value in small audiences and small audiences. When I say small audiences, I mean, audiences compared to a compliment, a Rogan, a Tim Ferris, right name, your favorite top of the line, the Michelle Obama, the list goes on of like royalties and celebrities now who are doing these podcasts. People like you. And I can make a living podcasting with audiences that are a fraction of celebrity size. When did that click? And we're gonna start getting into the inside baseball now of how you monetize a podcast and in how the podcast gets the almighty return on investment that everyone's seeking. When did that click for you? That said, ah, there's money in that and Hills. And I can find it with a podcast.
Speaker 2 00:15:07 It's a great question. And I can't point to the exact day. I knew that audience was important. There's that old thing in marketing. Right know, like, and trust people, buy products. People buy from companies that they know they like and they trust. So in the beginning, nobody knew me. They had to know me. Then they had to like me. They had to like my show. They had a, you know, uh, appreciate it. Find value in, in what I was offering. I, that that's easy. So you just keep doing it. You show up every day, every day, every, you know, over and over and over week after week. And you just keep putting yourself in front of them so that they know you, they come to like you, and eventually they come to trust you. Right? And trust, ask any business owner, ask any, any corporation, people buy based on a promise, right there.
Speaker 2 00:15:49 There's a promise that businesses make with consumers that merchants make with the consumer, right. That I promise that this product is going to deliver this result. You know, you either believe them or you don't either buy the product or you don't, you buy it. And maybe you're, uh, you find out you were scammed and you're going to go, you're going to go do something about it, but no, like, and trust. So for me in the beginning, especially, I just, it wasn't about monetization. I didn't even think about that until I got past the year. Marker. Maybe even 14 months or so. And I just thought, I just got to build a consistent product, build a consistent audience, keep them coming back and again, get them to know me like me and trust me. And then we can go from there.
Speaker 1 00:16:28 The relationship building, the networking. I hate to say personal brand. I know that's very popular statement. So I'll throw it in. I don't particularly love it, but I built my very first podcast. Uh, it covers the WordPress industry. And many of you might many people listening to me like, Oh my God, like, there's a things to talk about in the, well, yes there is. Right. And when I started an agency much like, you know, you coming out of maybe the food industry. When I started an agency, the only way I could compete as somebody who wasn't an engineer or a developer amongst a sea of other engineers and developers that were getting big jobs, you know, 20 years ago from big brands, I said, I have to break into this market and this is how I'm going to do it. I'm going to have conversations.
Speaker 1 00:17:08 And then you then use the podcast, your portfolio of content as leverage in a sales call, right? Company knocks on your door. They say, why should I hire chip to do this? Or Jane, who's listening to this who started her podcast. If you're just getting started, you could point people to your body of work, you know, on iTunes, let's say, and that's your leverage against a competition or, or sort of being unknown in a space. You know, just looking at your reviews on Apple podcasts. You know, one person says drinking the knowledge I've been listening to as many restaurant pauses as I'm opening a Mexican concept and Portugal found this trove of solid advice. Thanks for sharing. It's helping another review, says a podcast can change your life forever. This gentlemen chip, who you're listening to today is the DaVinci of restaurant marketing. I'm pretty sure you wrote that one chip. Now he's an artist. As much as he, as a businessman, I love most about his podcast, right? So you can leverage this stuff. It's not just get me sponsorships, you know, get me dollar shave club or butcher box to sponsor these episodes. It's you can turn this into an asset for your business.
Speaker 2 00:18:15 Yeah. And that's really what it is. And that's what I knew it could be. I knew that this could be the hub, right? The central piece to whatever else I wanted to do. And you know, I'd be lying to you if I told you I didn't map out a plan. If I, if I don't have a plan, I do. None of it's set in stone. They're all just ideas. I love to sketch. I love to brainstorm, but the idea is what are the three ways I could monetize? What are the five ways? What are the in three years when I hit X, number of downloads, what do I think might be available to me? And I just kind of sketched out ideas and I just kinda stayed open to see what would present itself. Can it all starts with the audience. You gotta have people who know, like, and trust you and keep coming back to you. We'll listen to you, you know, to, to your guidance and the solutions that you put in front of them. Absolutely.
Speaker 1 00:19:02 I know in the sort of quick pre-interview we did through email, you said that one of the ways you monetize the podcast is a digital product. I have inside knowledge, knowing that you at least at one point were on WordPress, which I'm assuming helped you as a platform to sell your digital product, whether it's a download or a course. When did that come about? And again, aha moment around that. When did, how did you package it up and offer it to your audience?
Speaker 2 00:19:29 So it was, uh, that one I just kind of slipped into. So I've spent again 20 years in the restaurant industry and I spent the last five of those years working directly with chefs and restaurant owners. And I'm kind of, I'm always blown away by, uh, by what they know and what they don't know. And one of the things that I always used to do is I help people get open. I helped them open their restaurant. And it's amazing how many people there's that old joke, right? And most businesses you've got, you know, your P and L so your profit loss and in restaurants, it's a passionate loss that, that there's, the profit becomes like a dirty word. People feel bad making money. It's like, no, no, no, it's okay to make money, but I would help people build out their budgets. And after a while, I just thought this is a really valuable tool.
Speaker 2 00:20:12 And so I built it out into a template that people could use specifically for like their business plan. You know, if they're going to go try to get a loan or a attract investors or whatever, where they could plug in all their projections and it would show them whether the business was going to work or not. It's something I've used over and over again. And I often bring in when I'm, when I'm brought on by a client and you know, people say, Oh, we're really struggling as an Indiana. Give me your numbers. We're not going to do anything else until we look at the numbers and that will tell us what's working and what's not. And again, a budget, a spreadsheet, none of that gives you answers, but it tells you the right questions to ask. It's what I've lived on. I it's what I've lived by, uh, as a consultant for all these years.
Speaker 2 00:20:52 And I just thought, okay, I'm going to package this up as a spreadsheet and I'm going to sell it. And so I did a whole episode, all about budgets, all about, you know, building your budget, what you need, you know, how to, you know, what should be in there, what shouldn't be in there, how to estimate your, your projections. You know, I need to get this many people in the door at this many dollars per head every night of the week. And so in any of it, it's, it's six interconnected sheets in Excel, right? So it's not just a simple one pager, it's a really complicated document with formulas, all built in there, you know, scans from one to the next, it's a complicated document that I've used for 10 plus years. And I just said, you know what, I'm going to sell it. So I did the episode, I talked all about it.
Speaker 2 00:21:33 I told people how to build it. I said, or if you want to spend $50, here's my template. It's 50 bucks. It will pay for, I mean, it's literally, and I wanted to make it really, really low entry. I could have charged 500 bucks for it, but I wanted to make it so that people are like, maybe I need that. Or I could do. I wanted it to be helpful. All it does is kind of compensate me for the work that I've already put in. It's sunk cost, I've already built it. It owes me nothing. I, and I use it over and over and over again. So I put it for sale for 50 bucks and I said, Hey, go get it. The beauty of it is that I sold, like, I don't know, 40 that first day. And then every single week afterwards, it's evergreen.
Speaker 2 00:22:10 It's just for sale every so often. Right? It goes in my, um, it, it goes in the signature to my email. Sometimes it goes at the bottom of every email. I send my list. You know, if you want the best restaurant budget, you know, the last restaurant budget you'll ever need, the only restaurant budget you'll ever need, go click here and buy it. It's for sale. Here you go. And it just tells what you're going to, what you're going to get. And I, you know, I've got three or four of those coming in every single week at 50 bucks. Am I buying a new beach house? Nope. But it makes 200 bucks. Every
Speaker 1 00:22:38 York you're not,
Speaker 2 00:22:40 But you know, 200 to 300 bucks every single week, without me doing anything old episodes are the ones advertising it. The email it's at the very bottom of the email to my list. And every once in a while on a new episode, I'll remind people that it's up there on the website, that's it, you know, just kinda, you know, wipe your hands of it and just, you know, it's a, it's a passive income stream, which is the other thing that was really important to me with this. I'm working on a book that kind of distills down a lot of the ideas that's going to be for later this year, but I'm trying to come up with, uh, at least that one was trying to come up with a passive income stream that could just generate revenue, could make money in my sleep behind my back.
Speaker 1 00:23:18 It's also a Testament again, of going back to the particular audience that you serve through the podcast. Because if you were just the general marketing, if, if your podcast was labeled just the general marketing show, and you're the guy that kind of is pitching to restaurants, they probably wouldn't buy from you. They probably wouldn't give you the time of day, because I don't know. And this is probably why they, they buy from you. Because when I started my agency 20 years ago, when I used to run it, and when I consult with other web designers today, they all say, man, these restaurant websites are terrible. I'm going to start there. And I say, good luck with that because they have zero time to pay attention to you. The marketing person who wants to come in and they know their website might be bad. They just don't have the time. But a guy like chip shows up who is hyper-specific in their industry, he's in their ears. And then he says, Oh, by the way, this other thing that I know for over a decade, Oh, they go, okay. Yes. I trust this guy. Right. I've been listening to him and he's in it. So yeah, I'll buy it. Do you find podcasts, a particular challenge with restaurant owners because of the time or as maybe your audience man, when they're not in it, like flipping the burgers per se.
Speaker 2 00:24:26 You know, that's why I built all these episodes to be about 20 to 30 minutes. I just thought, what time do they have? They've got time on their way to work. They've got time maybe during a workout. That's why I did that. And again, my big surprise is that some of the interviews, which are longer, which are an hour to 90 minutes where we really get into it, I've been surprised to see those takeoffs so well. Yeah. So I, again, I'm still learning about my audience that time that they're willing to put into it, how much time they have to give to it. And when they listen, but I've, I've been really overwhelmed by the kind of the commitment they make. You know, I should say that, uh, over the course of the first year, while I wasn't selling anything, I was doing that game of, you know, the, I was using content upgrades.
Speaker 2 00:25:07 So I would do an episode about something. And then I would have a workbook that went along with it. I would do an episode about something. I would have a spreadsheet that went with it and all of those I gave away for free. Right. In exchange for, uh, for an email address for the, uh, the pleasure of being able to, to contact you every so often to remind you of new episodes or whatever. So I had already kind of cued the audience into reaching out to get something, reaching out, to get something, reaching out, to get something. And so I could say, Hey, listen, I've given you tons of freebies over the last year, but this one's, this one's for sale, right? This one's special. This one took 10 years, 12 years to, to bake. And it's, it's really comprehensive. And I, and I think it's worth the, uh, I think it's worth the expense.
Speaker 1 00:25:46 Yes. The yeast and the bread, right? It's like, this is, this is what I've been curating in the basement for over a century. I want to talk now about your direct sponsorship that you mentioned in the email. It was one of the ways that you're going to monetize is through direct sponsorship. I love this. A lot of people are scared to death to knock on somebody's door and say, I have this thing. I've been building a hundred episodes. Here's the price. It's a hundred bucks per episode, 200, whatever the number is. And they're afraid to do that. Direct sales. I want you to explain why you're doing that, but with the icing of COVID, which sounds terrible, but with the icing of COVID on top, because I think of the restaurant industry in the year 2021, if you're listening to this in the future, we just had a global, we are in a global pandemic and still here, I forget what year it is, but restaurants particularly obviously heavily impacted. So how do you pitch it for folks who are in this real struggle these days?
Speaker 2 00:26:44 It all goes back to audience, man, I feel like a broken record, but you got to understand what their struggles are, right? So what's my struggle. I'd like to monetize this. I'd like to, you know, be compensated for, for the time that I put in to do the podcast. Right. But I have access to an audience that other people would die to get in front of, right. A committed, engaged, passionate email list and a committed group of listeners who show up every single week to hear what I have to say. And that's where I start. And I say, Hey, my audience are small to midsize restaurant operators, chefs, managers, you know, restaurant owners. That's exactly who I know you're trying to reach. Those are the decision makers. And this is how many of them I get every week. This is how I've monetized that already.
Speaker 2 00:27:30 Right? That's where that, that budget I can say, Hey, listen, I, you know, I've sold X number, you know, a couple of, hundred of these over the course of the last several months, they are engaged and they will buy given the right thing. They are an audience looking for solutions to their problems. And I'm, and I cherry pick, when I reach out to these companies, I don't blanket. I think I've reached out to six companies and I've gotten three of them. I mean, I'm not, I'm not even kidding. I'm like, I'm batting 500 because I went very specific. And I said, I think the audience that you're trying to reach those decision makers. I think I have them. I, those are the people I'm trying to reach. And it really, uh, it really serves both sides. Cause I can say again, my people have problems that need solutions.
Speaker 2 00:28:10 And I want to put solutions in front of them that I know will work. And I, when I bring on a sponsor, it is, uh, it is a vote of confidence. I'm saying, I know this product I've worked with the company. I like working for them. You can trust them again, know like, and trust. So the three sponsors that I, you know, again, since I started monetizing this, since I started doing sponsorships over the last couple of months in the middle of a global pandemic, that's the pitch I've used. It begins by knowing your audience. And then you have to know who your sponsors audience, who are they trying to reach and where there's overlap. That's where you're going to find your sponsors. I think
Speaker 1 00:28:47 You're also hitting at a time you're striking when the iron's hot, let's just use all the cliches, right? Breaking the iron's higher, the opportune times, et cetera, et cetera. Had you asked for sponsors, July, 2020, they, everyone would probably be like, no way. Like we didn't even know what's happening with the world. Let alone like the restaurant industry, uh, because of this pandemic. Now it's sort of like buying in that downmarket where there's opportunities coming. And if you get on board now, when we come out of this craziness, you'll be the first one. There not only will have people have been hearing you for the last 90 days going into the reopening and whatever we call it. You'll be the first in line you're already there. Right. And this is a fantastic thing. And for those of you listening, like listen to what chip said about valuing your audience sometimes like that, um, imposter syndrome hits us and like, Oh, we're not this big podcast. Or we don't have millions downloads per episode and it holds us back. So we're just kinda like, ah, no one ever wants to give me money for this. Yes they do. This is a, this is a fantastic medium that those com those companies could never get chips audience in a room, trusting them as much as they trust chip. Right. And that's the value right there.
Speaker 2 00:30:00 And that's what I've done. Right. I've spent the two years building that trust with the audience, you know, and just to be clear for the listeners, because, you know, I know as I listen to podcasts about podcasts and, and trying to do this and trying to get better at it, you know, sometimes if my brother does this, you know, he's notorious for doing this, he's a screenwriter out in LA and he'll listen to interviews and, you know, scream, right. I'll say, yeah, yeah. And then, you know, one thing led to another and then, and he's like, no, no, no, no. I want to understand. What's the one thing that led to another, that led to this big thing. And so just to be really clear, you know, my audience is like a thousand people, like a thousand downloads. So some weeks that six, seven, 800, some weeks that's 1200 or 1300.
Speaker 2 00:30:41 I'm not talking about some huge audience, not, not thousands at that were tens of thousands or whatever. It's like a thousand. So it's very, very niche. And I lead with that. When I reach out to my sponsors, I say, they are small, but mighty, they are niche. I know who they are. They're passionate, loyal, and engaged. And I believe this is the audience that you really want to get in front of too. Let's have a conversation. So I don't try to, I don't try to hide the fact that my listenership is small. I'm proud of the listenership that I built. And again, they are loyal. They are consistent, they are engaged. And that is something to focus on because that's what they want. Again, they they're trying to solve problems. For example, I work with a bunch of software companies they're trying to solve problems.
Speaker 2 00:31:24 Their biggest struggle often is getting restaurant owners to understand that they have a problem. You know, so like, Hey, you got a problem here and I've got a solution for it. Well, if the restaurant owner doesn't acknowledge that they have a problem, but there I am, week after week talking about, you know, certain things, you know, your website needs to be better. You need to be, you know, more aware of SEO and citations and, and, and how that affects your local rankings. And I'm talking about all these, these problems all the time. So I've already kind of like, you know, turn the volume up on those things, which is, you know, made it easier to then talk about solutions
Speaker 1 00:31:55 A hundred percent. His name is chip close. You can find [email protected]
. That's close with a K. The podcast name is restaurant strategy strategy, a marketing podcast, 100 episodes. Congratulations. I don't do sound effects, but maybe the productions team will work in a hand clapping audience applause in the background chip. Where else can folks find you on the web to say, thanks.
Speaker 2 00:32:16 Yeah. I mean, my website, like you said, chip close.com with a K a restaurant strategy podcast.com. You can find more there. And then on a, on social media, I am at chip close creative. That's my business. That's the best way to find me. And then to see everything that I'm doing,
Speaker 1 00:32:33 Awesome stuff, everybody else is the audience podcast. Find us at castles.com/audience. If you want to the free Academy it's academy.castles.com it's academy.casto.com. Thanks for listening.
Speaker 0 00:32:45 We'll see you in the next episode.