500: 5 Personal Takeaways & Strategies From 500 Podcast Episodes

Welcome to the 500th episode of the Not for Lazy Marketers podcast! 500! Wow, what a journey. A huge thank you to each of you who tune in regularly, who have followed along as I’ve talked through my wins, struggles, and insider knowledge. 

Today, I’m reflecting on the components of podcasting that have helped me consistently produce content for the past 4 years and reach this amazing milestone. From transparency and consistency to valuable content and strategic planning, I’m sharing five takeaways that can help you build a loyal audience and grow your brand. Listen in!

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Emily Hirsh:

If you are setting yourself up for that and overwhelm and you’re doing something where you know you don’t have the time to do it, to the level you’re trying to make yourself do it, it’s not going to work.

You are listening to the Not For Lazy Marketers podcast, episode number 500.

Hello everybody. Welcome back to the podcast. Can you believe I am on episode 500 of my podcast? I can’t believe it. I can believe it, but I also can’t. My podcast is such a regular part of my life. I was just thinking about that. I’m like, I have done this since 2018. like podcasting and making podcast episodes is just a part of most of my weeks and I am so grateful for it. I have a little special episode today for the 500th episode. I decided I was gonna share six takeaways but also some strategies if you’re looking to grow your podcast or maybe another form of organic content that I think will show you kind of the buy the scenes of things that have worked really well for us and and how I’ve been able to stay consistent. Before I dive into that, I want to share, cuz this will be the last podcast episode that comes out before we kick things off, if you are on the fence for Launch your Funnel live, get in those doors.

So if this is the first episode you’re listening to about it, we just released a new container, a new experience called Launch Your Funnel Live, which is gonna do exactly that within a six week time period. Together live with my support inside the group during calls, combined with pre-recorded trainings and that live support, we’re going to strategize your marketing strategy, touching on messaging, the actual funnel strategy, the free offer itself, the paid offer, and then we’re gonna build it out, write the funnel, copy, write the emails, write the pages, build the pages. There’s tech support in there. It’s like a bootcamp for marketing to actually get stuff done so that by the end of the six weeks you have a strategy that is ready to go to generate leads in sales organically and or via paid ads. So this is an amazing experience. I don’t know when we’re going to be doing it again.

 I also know that we’re not gonna charge this price again. So if you’re on the edge, this is your nudge. If you go to hirsch marketing.com/start, you can get in, we start Monday, April 3rd. So you basically have until the end of the day Sunday to get in. And then we’re closing the doors because this cohort is gonna start. And yeah, if you’re on the fence and if you have a question, you can send me a message on Instagram at Emily Hirsch, but otherwise, I am so excited for how many of you are in there and that I get to be in this kind of coaching position again. Okay, let’s dive in. So I have six things for you guys. I sat down and I reflected on what has been the most successful components to a podcast, how I’ve been able to get to 500 episodes, you know, consistently and also some strategies.

So I think you guys are gonna enjoy this. First of all, I’ve done 500 episodes. Some of those came out like where we had, you know, five in a week. But for the most part it’s been two a week for four years. I have maybe missed like four podcasts in four years. One time I had c another time I was traveling. Like it’s very, very rare that I miss a podcast. So I’ve been able to consistently produce this content over, you know, this four year period and I don’t plan on stopping anytime soon. I absolutely love podcasting. I’m so grateful for all of you listening. I feel like I have a relationship with the people who listen to my podcast because I show up so much as just who I am on here and I get to share little snippets and things about my life and what I’m going through.

And I’ve gotten many, many messages from you guys who have acknowledged me changing, especially in the last six to 12 months in my growth that you can hear it in my voice on the podcast. I’ve shared transparent struggles on here, I’ve shared wins, I’ve shared behind the scenes, I’ve shared mistakes that I’ve made, I have shared it all. And so I feel like when I podcast and I’m just talking to a friend and I love you guys, like I just value so much. All of you who give me the time, who listen to my podcast, who tune in regularly or if you don’t tune in regularly, but who trust me with your time. And I really enjoy breaking down information, sharing it with you, and giving you the real, the real and raw behind the scenes, whether that be marketing strategies or my own life or business.

And yeah, I just love it. So first of all, thank you all for tuning in and listening on a regular basis for sharing it. If you’ve ever shared it for leaving a review, if you’ve left a review, because I wouldn’t be doing this if, if those things weren’t happening. So, okay, the first takeaway is consistency. Like at any type of content that you’re gonna go launch, you have to make the goal consistency, especially in the beginning. I did not go into launching a podcast with the thought process of I need to get X amount of downloads within the first 30 days, or I need it to produce this many sales or this many applications. My goal was just release two podcasts twice a week. They’re gonna be short and to the point episodes. When I started, I had, you know, a general idea, we’ve changed the name over the years.

It used to be called the Hirsch Marketing Underground podcast. And then it w we changed it to the not for Lazy Marketers. And so it shifted and ebbed and flowed in terms of the type of content, but not really because the type of content is straight to the point strategies as well as behind the scenes insider knowledge. And that has been consistent. And so making the goal, whether you’re launching a podcast, whether it’s a blog, YouTube channel, whatever it is, that the goal is just consistency, especially for the first like six to 12 months. You really shouldn’t even care about the downloads or the views or the, the data behind it. I mean look at them, you wanna monitor them, you wanna have goals. But if I had a month where for whatever reason my podcast downloads were down significantly, I wouldn’t stop recording my podcast.

I would just keep going and I would figure out, okay, how do I make more valuable content? How do I dig in here and I would continue to show up no matter what. And so that became my goal no matter what, I’m releasing these two podcast episodes a week. And with content that should be the goal is consistency because you’re trying to build an audience and how do you stay in front of people? You are consistent. Like when you have a, when you have a relationship with someone, a friendship, a a partner, you know something you wanna nurture, you gotta stay consistent, you gotta talk to them regularly. You can’t go three months and not talk to them and I mean maybe some relationships but expect a really deep relationship. So consistency is everything. The second piece that I wanna share is, is or this kind of takeaway and thing that has worked really well for me, which fits my brand, but I think is one of the reasons my podcast is so successful is how transparent I am.

And realizing that in content as a content creator, what your audience wants is you, they want the real you. They want the real behind the scenes. They don’t want the filters, they don’t want the scripts, they don’t want the overproduced podcast or video. They want the real you and they wanna feel that connection with you like you are their friend and like they do truly know you. And that has been one of the most successful components of my podcast is how transparent I’m willing to be on my podcast even when it feels scary, even when it feels hard, even when I’ve messed up and I share that I’ve messed up and I share how hard it is because that creates a connection. And I don’t do that from a place of like an ulterior motive where I’m trying to create a connection with you guys.

I do it because I don’t know how else to do it besides be really transparent. Like I can’t fake stuff, I can’t fake a relationship, I can’t fake, like I, I don’t have a filter. I’m very transparent in my communication and so naturally that’s how I showed up. But I think the lesson for you as a content creator is to really look at your content and and ask yourself like, is this in alignment with who I am? If somebody who is consuming my content, like ran into me on the street or at a restaurant, would they be like, oh yeah, you know, it’s so and so. That’s exactly how they act on the podcast. And I truly believe that that is how you guys would experience me. Whether it’s on a webinar or a podcast or you see me in a coffee shop, I’m the same person and that means I’m human and that means I make mistakes and that means I have struggles and that means I share them transparently.

Now I always share it from a responsible place where I’m able to share a takeaway or a lesson or insight for you guys. Like I’m not literally coming on here like crying <laugh>, there’s nothing wrong with that. But that wouldn’t be helpful for you guys if I was like in the middle of something. And so I’m very, very transparent and I also like I don’t script my episodes at all. This is something that comes natural to me that I’m really grateful for. But I actually do worse with a script. Anytime I’ve tried to record a video with a teleprompter, it was like terrible <laugh>. So I will sometimes make bullet lists. Like right now I have a list of the six things I’m gonna share with you guys and you know, each thing’s like four words, that’s it. Everything else I’m saying is just like me having a conversation and that’s what you guys love.

And so I’ve been on podcasts or I’ve been interviewed before where I really wished that the interviewer would allow the conversation to go more naturally and and be more off the cuff and instead of reading a script of of questions because I really feel that that’s the most beneficial way for people to consume content as long as you keep it brief. Some people talk forever. So you have to play to your skills and and your strengths for sure. But your audience wants the real you. They want the unveiled, unfiltered, raw and real you in a responsible way because that’s what creates connection. So don’t forget why you’re creating content. It’s not to portray a show that is not real, it’s to create connection. The third thing is simplicity. Simplicity is key in keeping this all manageable. So if you are gonna launch a podcast or up your content creation or gonna launch a YouTube channel, I think you know, as with anything that you take on a workout program or a new challenge, if you make it so hard and so complicated that you won’t do it for more than a few weeks, you will fail.

And that’s one of the reasons that I don’t record my podcast as a video right now. I sometimes will, my team really wants me to do it, but I have two issues with it. One, I personally don’t wanna just take the video of me on a podcast and put it up on YouTube because I feel like I wanna change the content for my YouTube channel when I launch it to be more specific and themed. Number two, I don’t have to get video ready to record this podcast and I don’t want to every single time I record a podcast because that’s too difficult for me. My podcast setup is a nice microphone and QuickTime on my computer and I record an audio and I upload it to Google Drive and we do minimal editing. My team does it in-house. We keep track of everything in a single Google spreadsheet.

I put the title, I put the date and we put the link when it releases. Like it is so simple. And that’s how we started with a very small team to start. But that’s how we also keep it very manageable. We could probably do more in terms of repurposing and using clips and all those things. Absolutely. And do we have those discussions on the team? Yes, but we didn’t go out the gate with the expectation of doing the impossible so that we set myself up to lose. And I see content creators do this all the time. If you are forcing yourself to create a type of content that you hate creating, you will fail. You will not like it and eventually you will stop. And so if you’re creating content that doesn’t feel in alignment or natural to you to an extent, like sometimes creating content can feel uncomfortable because you’re doing something outside your comfort zone that’s different than forcing yourself to be somebody you’re not.

If you are setting yourself up for that and overwhelm and you’re doing something where you know you don’t have ti the time to do it to the level you’re trying to make yourself do it, it’s not going to work. So keep it really simple. It doesn’t have to be complicated. And honestly the most important thing is that the content is really good. That the topics that you talk about and the way that you show up for your audience, the overproduction and the over complication of it is not necessary. And I do see people waste a lot of time with this. They get into like a process where they take their podcast and they make it into so many clips and they have a video and they do all these things and it’s like, why is that doing anything? That’s actually one of the reason I don’t overdo that with my podcast is because I don’t want it to feel robotic when we release a podcast.

I don’t want to have the same type of clip produced on my social media every time we have a podcast because you guys will start ignoring it. And so we keep it fresh. So that’s the third thing. Simplicity is key. Keep it manageable, align it with who you are and how you can set yourself up for success and be realistic with the time that you have. Like if you’re trying to launch more content or increase your content, how much time a week are you gonna dedicate to that? And then is that realistic to what you’re asking yourself to do? Okay, the next three things are more strategic in terms of what has helped with my podcast growth. So my podcast series strategy is pretty dang good and a lot of people have copied me and I love it. I’m good with it and I hadn’t seen someone do this before me.

So the way that podcast downloads work is it’s based on like the number of episodes you have. So you can increase your downloads a hundred percent by, you know, getting more people to listen to your podcast. But also if you produce more podcast episodes, you get more downloads and then that helps your numbers on the charts, which then helps you organically with your podcast. So this was like over a year ago or maybe a year ago, I came up with this idea where I had done private podcast feeds in the past where people could download a link to the feed and then get access to the audio, but it wasn’t on my public podcast. And I was like, well why don’t I just do a series on my public podcast? We’ll just release some extra episodes and we’ll see what that does and then we will take that series and we can repurpose it and it’s just an extra place for nurturing.

And it worked really well and it works really well in a lot of reasons. Number one, it increases our downloads every single time by like 20% when we do it. Number two, it increases my touchpoints with you guys. So you’ll notice in my series I’m not usually directly pitching anything, but I can 100% tell you every time I do a series we get more sales and we get more applications. My podcast is our number one generator of applications and clients after referrals. Referrals is number one than my podcast. Then our lead, Jen, which is saying something cuz we have pretty good lead gen and marketing strategy. So my podcast produces a good amount of clients but also a high volume of clients and they are usually my favorite clients cuz you guys know me and the process and the team so well. So the podcast series strategy is essentially what you see me do.

I did it a couple weeks ago where we do a series and I usually release extra episodes. It’s usually like three day or five day. And so I’m doing extra episodes like Monday through Friday instead of the normal Tuesday, Thursday. And this series has a theme. So we’ve done all different types of one. I’ve done it on the recession, I’ve done it on like marketing strategy and building one. The last one I did was your marketing questions answered. So I’m always trying to come up with different themes and ideas and we’ve probably done like 10 of these and they’re all really successful, so steal my idea. We actually take them, put them on a landing page and run ads to my series too as our visibility ads. And it’s just an extra way to connect with your audience and you don’t need an optin page or a funnel or any of that.

You really can just create the extra content and it absolutely increases your downloads. We’ve also done fun stuff during the series where we’ve I encourage people always to share the series. We’ve done giveaways around that. So I’m always trying to come up with ideas of how to send people back to my podcast and use that as a really a place for nurturing because if I can get someone to listen to a couple of episodes, they likely will become a subscriber. And that’s what I’m looking for. Number five, this is more a strategy. So obviously the podcast builds a really solid audience as I was just sharing and I see people really overcomplicate calls to actions and commercials on podcasts. I have considered sponsoring things on my podcast, but I’m just not there yet in terms of like where I think it would be worth it.

 And it hasn’t felt in alignment. And you guys will notice one thing I do really well is if I have a call to action, like I want you guys to go do something because we’re launching or we have something coming up or whatever, I will tie the call to action naturally into the content. And that works a hundred times better than a commercial because think about it, what are you more likely to actually actually listen to and retain? Are you gonna listen to midway through this podcast when I come on and there’s a commercial or are you gonna do what I do and fast forward through those or are you gonna listen to the content? And if I weave it all throughout the content or at the beginning and I’m just having a conversation and mentioning it, are you gonna listen to that? Yeah, because it’s a part of the episode.

So when we have a live launch or when I wanna push something and be strategic with something, I just mix it into the content. So it was about a month or maybe two months ago or six weeks ago that I was trying to sell out my VIP days for the quarter, which we did. The way that I did that was I did two podcast episodes breaking down how I structure a v i p day and showing that to you, giving you value through that, but making you go, oh, I want a v i p day if you were the right fit. And then I had a call to action throughout the content. If you know this, this episode at the beginning I mentioned our live launch, our strategy. So so much of marketing is about working it in naturally like a conversation. And so don’t overcomplicate calls to actions.

If you have something regularly you wanna push, then like every three episodes tie it into the content. If you have a live launch or something, then theme your content that week. You’ll notice last week I talked about strategy. Why? Because we were doing a training on your marketing strategy. It’s very intentional. A lot of my co my content and my topics are intentional. Probably half are intentional and half are like feeling <laugh> because they’re based off of a question. I got inspiration, I got something that came to me, was on a walk, but then the other half are intentional based on what is happening in our own marketing. So I love natural calls to action that work into your content and then theming your content because that’s how people are gonna actually retain and listen to what you have to say the best. Now, we don’t have a commercial at the end of our podcast, which is fine, but I don’t overcomplicate it.

I really keep it simple and I make it really natural. The final piece to this is repurposing and repurposing in a way that you’re probably not thinking about. So a lot of people look at repurposing as, let me break this down into like five clips in an extra video and post it on YouTube and have all these pieces of content, which again, I feel like we could probably do that a little bit better, but more so the way that I use my podcast is I repurpose it in different ways. So every one of my podcasts could become easily like separate social media posts that are totally separate from my podcast, but my team could use, I also frequently will use it in nurture sequences. So if I plan out a nurture sequencer, I’m trying to create an experience for a lead, I will pull from my podcast and tell my team, oh, just use the content that I said in this podcast and tie it into this email because it goes with this.

So that doesn’t even mean directly linking back to the podcast. It could just be repurposing what I said. And so if you have a place where you show up and create content like I do on my podcast, it is a great place to constantly have your team reference or to reuse what you’re saying in strategic ways, which again doesn’t mean you have to directly link back to the podcast. We have used things I’ve said on a podcast and then turned them into a PDF download and you, you guys don’t even realize it because I put all the work into organizing this content and it can be repurposed. And there’s a lot of times that I’ve trained writers and I’m like, everything’s in my podcast. Just listen to my podcast cuz it’s me, it’s my process, it’s the way I say things, that is my voice.

And so it is such a huge resource for writers who come in or for leveraging it, for email sequences, for social posts, for other content. And I’ll also say this too, you can repeat episodes like, do you guys remember what I talked about three months ago? I don’t. So if I, you guys don’t. And so I have many times repeated topics, talked about it in a different way, talked about it with a new lens, talked about it with a new story. Like are you kidding? There’s things I probably have said on here out of 500 episodes 50 times because they’re my core foundational components. And you never know when somebody actually needs to hear it or needs the reminder or is ready to listen or is new to your podcast. So don’t worry about repeating things if it comes off natural and in alignment to you.

So you’re probably sitting on a lot of opportunity if you do create regular content that you could leverage for things like your emails, for social media, for repeating top episodes and, and leveraging that and, and you’re creating more work that you don’t have to create for yourself. So those are my six takeaways and strategies to celebrate episode 500. I hope you guys join me in Launch Your Funnel Live. It is going to be so epic, I cannot wait. So if you wanna join hirshmarketing.com/start, if you are over the fence for or on, on the fence, over the fence, hopefully you’re over the fence. If you’re on the fence for any reason at all and you wanna run it by me, I will be in my dms. I’ve talked to many of you already and I will be personally replying. So come send me a message, we’ll figure out what the best fit for you is. I’ve had a few people go like, should I do this or should I do this? So I’ve talked it through with them so you can send me a message on Instagram anytime. Otherwise, I’ll talk to you next week.

Thanks for listening to the Not for Lazy Marketers Podcast. If you love this episode and want deeper support with your marketing, head over to helpmystrategy.com to see how Hirsh Marketing can help take your marketing to the next level no matter where you’re at today, we help our clients scale faster than ever, find hidden leaks in their funnel, experiment with new creative marketing strategies, and help their business explode and be more profitable than they ever dreamed possible. Head over to helpmystrategy.com and see if you qualify for a free strategy audit with Team Hirsh.