Imagine for a moment that you’re building a house.
The whole reason you started is that you need a roof over your head. Knowing the end result you’re aiming for, you decide to take the quickest route to get there.
You lay a few bricks of the foundation, then slap together four walls before carefully balancing your rafters and patching together the roof.
You’ve achieved your goal of building a roof over your head–in record time too–but have skipped the plumbing, heating, and insulation entirely.
I don’t need to tell you this isn’t an effective way to build a house.
And yet, we often approach our podcasts in the same way.
In our haste to build upwards, we do the bare minimum when it comes to laying our foundation and building out structural supports and processes that make it sustainable.
While we might be able to build the freestanding structure, it’s far from sturdy. And is by no means capable of building further on top of.
What’s more, when faced with the opportunity to renovate and build out those missing internal assets of our shows we repeat the same mistake.
We develop a social media strategy but don’t commit long enough for it to really work.
We reach out to our dream guests but don’t follow up when we don’t hear back.
We make a list of potential collaborators for cross-promotion but never muster the courage to reach out.
We’re great at starting, but poor at finishing.
The result is something that looks like a functioning podcast from the outside… but doesn’t actually function.
It doesn’t attract new listeners.
It doesn’t turn existing listeners into customers.
It doesn’t attract highly-aligned, well-paying sponsors.
Our shows have potential, but no results.
The answer is to stop adding on anything new until we’ve optimized what we already have in place.
To focus on building outward from the foundation instead of purely upward.
To build out each potential asset to the point that it’s actually functioning before moving on to the next one.
This might mean:
- Building an engagement engine on one social platform before attempting to add another
- Following up with potential guests & collaborators 3 times before moving on to the next name on your list
- Revisiting the tactics, strategies, and practices you’ve already (half) implemented before writing them off and looking for something new
In most cases, we’ve done half the work already. Just not enough to see results.
Success in podcasting, marketing, and pretty much anything else usually comes from being able to push onward once the initial excitement of a project has faded and optimize the various behind-the-scenes components you’ve previously laid the groundwork for.
This work often isn’t visible to anyone but you.
And it certainly isn’t glamourous.
But if you hope to build a foundation for long term growth, it’s unavoidable.
And without it, all the work you’ve invested already will go to waste.