Mia Fileman 0:05
Life's too short for crap marketing. The Got Marketing? Podcast is for marketers, business owners and entrepreneurs who want marketing that's fun, accessible and meaningful. Join me Mia Fileman for inspired chats with my favorite marketing insiders about marketing that works, campaigns that inspire and the fads, fakery and false prophets to avoid.
Hello, friend, welcome back to the Got Marketing? Show. Today we are going to talk about starting and growing a podcast in 2023. Is it still worth it? What are the benefits of podcasting? What are the lessons learned from veteran podcasters
Beck Rayner 0:48
You have to have like a proper plan and strategy in place. But I would say like when you're going into it, obviously, number one, you have to be really passionate about the topic or whatever it is your podcast is going to be about. You also somewhat have to have some sort of gut instinct that this doesn't quite exist, or I'm going to do it in a different way kind of thing. But then also, you really need to not be afraid of niching down into the topic that you want to talk about on your podcast.
Mia Fileman 1:17
That was Beck Rayner. She is the founder of Military Life, and the podcast host of the Military Life podcast. Her podcast is coming up on 85,000 downloads, which is incredibly impressive. Welcome to the series, Beck!
Beck Rayner 1:35
Thanks for having me.
Mia Fileman 1:36
Thank you so much for agreeing to do this, you are one busy busy lady. Just tell us a little bit about what's going on in your world, because it's a lot.
Beck Rayner 1:47
So we're just about to send our 150th episode live. So that keeps me pretty busy. I'm pretty much a full time podcaster. But aside from that, I have my online community attached to that podcast and with that community comes a whole lot of work as well, because I like to offer as much, I guess, knowledge, information and value to that community as I can. So that's, you know, through an information hub that I regularly update, that's through doing online and in person catch ups for that community. And then I've also just launched a collaborative campaign with another defense partner, who's not a podcaster, but has her own community, to help defense partners, jump on board, different campaigns about different issues that the community is passionate about, so that they can, I guess, have their voice heard in our conversations that they need to have their voice heard.
Mia Fileman 2:45
That is so impressive. This is a very personal episode for me, because I'm a fellow defense partner and how you have advocated on our behalf. It has been truly, truly remarkable. And I've been following you on this journey for the last three years. A lot of this for you started as being just doing it out of the goodness of your heart, like you weren't being paid for it. You were bootstrapping both the community and the podcast, and putting in all of this blood, sweat and tears. It's really only been recently that you've started to monetize this incredible military life community. So firstly, I want to say a huge thank you, but I'd also really love for you to take us through that process. How is it now that you are actually starting to at least reap some rewards for all of this incredible groundwork that you've laid over the last couple of years?
Beck Rayner 3:44
Yeah, definitely. Like you mentioned, it has been this long journey. It hasn't been that, you know, all of a sudden, I decide to start a podcast and it just magically just happens. It's been a lot of work behind the scenes. A lot of it isn't even related to the podcast. And as you would know, with the work that you do in the field that you work in, you know, having a podcast obviously is a benefit to your business on what you're doing. But it doesn't just happen. It's part of like this big collaborative thing for your business and just part of one facet of your business kind of thing.
I guess, selfishly when I started the podcast, you know, my background is journalism. So I come from a radio journalism background. So selfishly, it was about me coming back to my roots. And being able to have, I guess, a voice with a microphone. I am not afraid to listen to my own voice. A lot of people don't like listening to their own voice. But that was where I came from, that was my field of work. But being a defense partner, as you would know, when you move to different locations, you aren't always able to get employment in the field that you're trained in and that you're passionate about. So selfishly, it was about helping the community and telling the stories of defense partners, but also combining my passion for radio and broadcast journalism and sort of going on that journey. So it kind of all started with with that.
So, you know, initially I started the communities because I knew as a defense partner myself that it didn't exist, that there wasn't this community where all defense partners were able to feel welcome and accepted and valued and acknowledged. After I had sort of grown that community a little bit, then the podcast came along, because you know, I already had that background, and it sort of all just went from there. And then, you know, in the back of my mind, the next step was always to monetize the podcast. So I guess I went into that with with a plan to do that, but it ended up happening a little quicker than expected.
Mia Fileman 5:44
That's great to hear, that's probably very bolstering for the rest of us to hear. I don't think there's anything selfish about you playing to your strengths and staying in your zone of genius, which is journalism. This is something that's really important in marketing. When people are giving you advice around or you should be making videos, you should be making podcasts. But your natural personality and strengths don't lie in those areas. I am not great on live video, I'm just not, you know, so why would I try to get blood out of a stone? Like, I've got to play to your own advantages. And, you know, then you can do a really good job of, of whatever it is that you put your hand to.
Beck Rayner 6:24
Yeah. And that's definitely when it comes to podcasting, what people should be asking themselves as well. Why are they starting a podcast? Is it just because they should be starting a podcast and that it could help them grow their business? Or is it because they're passionate about starting a podcast and doing it in a way that maybe someone else hasn't done it or, you know, they've found a niche, and, you know, it's an extension of what they're already doing. Or maybe that topic hasn't been covered on a podcast. So you have to, as you would know Mia, you have to be really passionate about it. Because podcasting doesn't just happen, it takes a lot of time, a lot of work, and eventually monetizing as well also takes a lot of time and effort as well.
Mia Fileman 7:04
So important. So if you could have your time again, what what advice would you give to Beck, you know, in terms of thinking about starting a podcast now, like what do you wish you had known?
Beck Rayner 7:17
What do I wish I'd known. I guess, I would have factored in, because I, like I mentioned, I am so passionate about podcasting and broadcasting, I was just loving the fact that I was getting back to my roots and being able to have a voice and be able to tell stories that I just wanted to do it 24/7. But I think I would tell myself that I need to pace myself and that I need to factor in breaks between doing that. Because not only is a lot of work, but you know, it's a creative field as well. You need to have those breaks to be able to come back and be passionate, just as passionate about it when you you're doing recording Episode 150, as you were with episode one.
So I think I probably what I do differently is I start off the podcast with seasons. I guess when I started, I'm like, No, I'll just do episode 1, 2, 3, 4. And you know, I won't have any breaks at all, I'll just do, I'll pre record and I'll be real, really organized. So it won't matter if you know, I commit to doing 52 episodes a year and because I'll be pre recorded all the organize that it'll be fine, because I don't want people to drop off from listening to the podcast. I want to keep growing and I don't want to miss a thing kind of thing. Whereas I really should have factored in from the very start having breaks and you know, I guess reassessing how to go forward with episode 30 to 40 and 40 to 50 kind of thing as opposed to just sort of going, going going and then maybe creating a little burnout for myself.
Mia Fileman 8:51
Yeah. And also taking that time to regroup. Bank the lessons from the first season go, Okay, what's the plan for season two? What are what are we actually doing? How are we doing it differently? Or is it? Because once you you're in it, yeah, we'll just record another episode. But like, you have to stop and said, check the format, the length, the people that come onto the show, the intro, the outro, the mid roll ad, all of it needs to be considered right?
Beck Rayner 9:18
Yeah, definitely. And when you're going out, you just don't have that capacity to be able to sit back and go, Okay, well, how can I do this differently? How can I change this? How can I make this better to, I guess, keep the downloads coming in? Because I did have that consistent download figure. I just wanted to keep going and going and giving people what they wanted. I kept getting messages and feedback and emails and people just telling me that, you know, this is brilliant. Thank you for creating this and, you know, good reviews. Whereas I could have been sitting back and sort of thinking, well, would my downloads be even more if I sat back and did it differently this way or if I made sure that I introduced some different categories to ask my guests about, or if I engage with my community even more to ask them, what do they want to see next kind of thing as opposed to just going from episode to episode? Because like you said, you just get on that hamster wheel and you have to produce those episodes time and time again.
Mia Fileman 10:15
Yeah, well, strategy will always win in my mind for sure. You've mentioned a few times already, on today's episode, that it's hard work. Can you elaborate on that? What is hard work about it? For the uninitiated, It seems like you just get a microphone, and you hook it up to your laptop and you hit record.
Beck Rayner 10:35
Yeah, I guess because I did have the journalism background and the broadcasting background. It's hard work in the sense that I have certain standards that I want the podcast to be at. I have, you know, certain research that I like to do before the episodes before even connecting with the guests, and then I have certain standards for editing and all those sort of things. Some of them are my own standards, and probably higher than what it needs to be sometimes. But also some of it is wanting to produce a quality podcast that people keep coming back to time and time again. Not just some slapped together, don't even know what the topic is for the first 30 minutes of the episode, people dropping off because it wasn't great. Like, I want people to come back time and time again, or I want them to, to make it better and better kind of thing. So I guess I have those standards for myself. But I I feel like there should be standards within the industry as well that, you know, it's great that people can from anywhere, anytime pick up a microphone and have a voice on whatever topic it is that they're passionate about. But I still think that it should be done well. And because of that, you know, and because I am monetized now, it is my full time job.
So I might take a day to research the questions that I'm going to send to my guests before I've even recorded, then it takes time to go back and forth. And I guess assess those answers and see how I can I guess adjust the questions and how I'm going to take the podcast on different points and and what avenues I should go down. Because, you know, I could just do the same questions over and over and over which you know, I have the base questions that I use. But I don't want the same sort of result because then people are going to be like, well, this is kind of like the same episode that you did last week. I always have like, Okay, well, how is this episode going to go down a different path toward last week's did? And what are people going to hear and benefit from? And what information are they going to get? Or what experience are they going to learn from this episode, and that all takes time and effort? And I guess because I am monetized I'm able to put that time into a better, I guess it's being able to have those standards for yourself before you are able to monetize it. But then, you know, putting the time and effort into it to make that quality podcast from the start
Mia Fileman 12:58
Totally. Well talking about stats, 90% of podcast shows don't get past episode three. 90% of people that start podcasts will quit after 20 episodes. And only the top percent of podcast shows make it to 100 episodes. So you my friend are in the top probably 5% of podcasts posts for making it to 150 episodes, which speaks to why it's so important to have that quality and strategy from the beginning.
Beck Rayner 13:33
Yeah, that's amazing that I've been able to do that. But I think people need to go into podcasting, like you mentioned, not just picking up my microphone going, I'm just going to start a podcast going into it, understanding why they're starting the podcast, but having that long game strategy as well. Because you know, people don't get past three episodes or 20 episodes. And I think that sometimes because it is easy for people just to start a podcast these days, and maybe they don't understand that, you know, you have to be in it for the long game. And you hear about all these podcasts with these celebrity hosts and, and all of this popular podcasts that maybe you listen to, and they get a million downloads and they're on $23 million contracts and all of that sort of stuff. Like that is a very, very few people that are able to do that right off the bat. Like it's a lot of time, effort and a grind to be able to keep going again and again and again. And that's even with you know, it's even been hard for me even with my being monetized and me being able to hit nearly 150 episodes and 85,000 downloads like that hasn't been easy, but you have to be in it for the long game.
Mia Fileman 14:43
Totally. So from my perspective, because I obviously have a Podcast too That's so silly to say because we're literally on it. Is that firstly you need to come up with what is the podcast, why does it exist? What need does it fulfill because I think the biggest thing that I see is that there are so many podcasts that are just throwing on the pile. Like another Social Media Marketing podcast or another podcast where that talks about entrepreneurship, like, at this point, there are quite established series on those topics. And so, I feel like if you are coming to the podcast game, now, you need to have a really clear point of difference rather than just being another in a category.
Then so like, then, of course, you need your artwork, and then you need your description. And then you need to book the guests or plan your individual episodes, if that's what you're going to do, then you need to record all of those episodes, then you need to edit those episodes, then you need to publish those episodes with show notes. That's before you've even started promoting this podcast. And actually finding like podcasts through podcasts app, so like going to Apple and hoping that your podcast is going to get promoted by Apple or promoted by Spotify is actually a really big misconception is that those platforms are actually very bad at promoting the podcast, it's you as the podcast host that has to do the heavy lifting to market the podcast.
Beck Rayner 16:18
Oh, yeah, definitely. Like you mentioned, like, it's all of that stuff before you've even gotten to the stage where you're shouting to the rooftops listen to my podcast. And by that stage, you're like, Oh, I'm so exhausted from all of that work. So you have to have like, a proper plan and strategy in place. But I would say like, when you're going into it, obviously, number one, you have to be really passionate about the topic or whatever it is your podcast is going to be about. But then you also somewhat have to have some sort of gut instinct that this doesn't quite exist, or I'm going to do it in a different way kind of thing to push you forward with it. But then also, you really need to not be afraid of niching down into, really like niching into the topic that you want to talk about on your podcast or the community, you want to build around that podcast. I think it's better to have 5000 listeners who are over the moon excited to listen to your next episode, and are waiting for that pop up on their downloads in their podcast app. As opposed to having 10,000 listeners who are like, Man, I could take it or leave it I'm not really worried about when the next episodes coming out kind of thing. And that's because you're offering those 5000 listeners something that they're really gaining something from or learning something from in that niche, as opposed to just being a general podcast that you know, 10 Other people are already doing kind of thing.
Mia Fileman 17:40
Yeah. You are the perfect example of that, because your podcast is for defense partners, I mean, not so much for serving members. But for the partners of serving members that's pretty freakin niche like it doesn't get any more niche than that very, very specific. But then as a result, you can go deep on that, like on the matters on the on the issues on the topics on the things that directly affect defense partners. Whether they're male, female or non binary, it's just for the partner. So then there's no wastage, there's no you throwing spaghetti at the wall, hoping it sticks, you know exactly what we need and want to hear. Because it is also your lived experience.
Beck Rayner 18:23
Yeah, definitely, that lived experience definitely plays a huge part in that. I guess, as well, and I don't like to use the word luck, because obviously, a lot of hard work goes into what we do, you would know that, you know, luck doesn't factor in. But sometimes, you know, you could have done the preparation and you're just in the right place, right time, or you're starting something at the exact right time. So like, does sort of come into it a little bit. But I don't base anything on luck. Because I've done a lot of preparation. It's 10 years in journalism, and broadcasting and all of that sort of stuff to come together to start a podcast.
But I guess I was just lucky in air quotes that I was the first person niching down into this topic. And you know, I had the experience to back it. And I had this vision that I wanted to focus on this niche. And I was committed to that. And then, you know, six months in my financial partner came on board. And they came to me ahead of time to when I wanted to monetize obviously, I'm not going to say no though, but it was just a little bit of luck in those different areas with a lot of hard work and preparation behind it.
Mia Fileman 19:32
Yeah. And so your podcast sponsor is Defence Bank, which makes so much freakin sense. That also is another reason why the niching is so important. If you were not specific in that space, then Defence Bank probably wouldn't have been as interested in you. For instance, I'm also a defense spouse but my podcast is not about military life. So Defence Bank wouldn't want to sponsor my podcast, it's not specific. Even though I do have some military partners that listen, it's not the core audience like it is for you.
Beck Rayner 20:11
Yeah, no, it just ended up being an amazing fit. I was offering something that they were looking for at the time. Behind that, was that there had been started to be education behind the topic of why defense partners are such an integral part of the defence life experience, and and that they should be acknowledged and valued. And also, part of, you know, the bigger picture of defence families and allowing the defence member to, you know, go forward and do their job with the backing of their family back home and the sacrifices that defense partners make. It just happened to be that that education piece had already started in the background that, you know, businesses like Defence Bank was starting to pick up on the fact that well, actually, maybe we shouldn't just be targeting the defence member, we should be targeting and advertising towards the defense partner, because they are an integral part in that picture.
Mia Fileman 21:09
They make all the decisions.
Beck Rayner 21:11
Mia Fileman 21:13
I mean, I have one of these partners, and he's never booked a doctor's appointment in his life, because it gets booked by defense. And so when it comes to making any decisions about finance, home loans, you know, money, that all has to come to me. So, of course, it makes a lot of strategic sense for Defence Bank to talk to the partners, they're making these decisions.
Beck Rayner 21:37
Yeah, definitely. And, of course, you know, I wasn't just going to take on any financial partner, just for the sake of it, it had to be a good fit. And, you know, there were a lot of talks behind the scenes before we went forward with anything formal and actually decided to partner, because I didn't want to just be this person that had built this community and had started this podcast, and, you know, the community was loving what I was doing, and then all of a sudden, I'm making money from it.
Yes, I deserve to make money from it, because I was doing it full time. I was putting my all into it. I had also added my own financial funds into it for the first year or two. But I didn't want to break that trust with my community. So it had to be a fit with a financial partner who made sense, but also came to the party, and offered information and education and value to my community through that partnership, whether that be through education about the different grants and schemes that are available for home loans, and for helping defense families purchase homes, and anything financially related through Defence Bank that I can offer value and information and education around was obviously going to be a good thing for my community. So I wanted to make sure that we were both on the same page before going through with any financial partnership.
As it is, I've turned down other partnerships with other organizations because they weren't the right fit, because no amount of money was worth compromising the trust in my community. And the value that I was offering my community for a little bit of money, but then turning off my listeners or turning off my community from the amazing community that we build.
Mia Fileman 23:22
That's right. It's so admirable, also, it helps you sleep well at night. So with your sponsor with Defence Bank, tell us how did that come about? How did that relationship come about? Earlier you said that they came to you. But were you kind of maybe, you know, romancing them before that. How did that go?
Beck Rayner 23:47
Yeah, so I guess, you know, Defence Bank ended up coming to me because they they found out about me, but it wasn't by chance that they found out of me about me. When I started the podcast, like I mentioned, I had in mind that I would want to monetize it. And because of that, I started to think about well, who would be a good fit to be the partner and the sponsor of the podcast? Like who would make sense kind of thing. So I kind of came up with a list of possible organizations and businesses who would be a good fit, and that I think, would make sense. I started to build relationships with those organizations through social media and through LinkedIn and through different avenues like that, and because of that, they started to see what I was about started to see the community that I was building, found out that I had the podcast and then obviously realized that as I was growing, that there was potential for them to connect with me, and to potentially tap into that community and tap into any, I guess, advertising or partnership opportunities that might be and so as a result, the marketing manager from Defence Bank got in contact with me and, you know, just wanted to to learn a little bit more about me.
At that stage, I was sort of planning in six months time, I would start getting contact and seriously thinking about monetizing, but I had just had to take that opportunity when it came about. So that opportunity came about and I made sure that I locked in a face to face meeting, I didn't want to do it over email, I wanted really to connect with that person and make sure that it was definitely a good fit, but also talk about my community and really, like have that emotional connection coming from me because I am so ingrained in the defence community, and I'm living this life and you know, I understand it, but then also connect with their business and see where they're coming from and how they are wanting to partner with me.
So from there, you know, we had a face to face meeting, but then also, I was ready, like I had my packages, my partnership and my sponsorship packages ready. And I started big from the start, like I didn't downplay what I was offering, I knew what what I was planning on growing my community and my podcast into because at that stage, I was only at 10,000 downloads. So I knew if I kept going consistently the way that I was going, what it could be and what benefit it would offer a financial partner. And so I backed myself in from the start asking for a certain amount of money, and then going from there.
Mia Fileman 26:26
So good. It sounds like to me, You made your own luck Bec. It wasn't sitting back and just waiting for the universe, you were very intentional about going out there and planting those seeds to monetize your podcast. I love that you said that you deserved to be paid because we do these love jobs, you know, to begin with. But if they don't end up, you know, generating revenue for us, you would have given it up, you would have gone okay, well, this isn't working, I can't make a living from this, and I'm gonna go and have to get a job. And so it's so important that female founded businesses that are for purpose that have that social impact mission are getting paid, because at the end of the day, we can't continue doing this if we're not.
Beck Rayner 27:18
Yeah, definitely. And like you said, I would have probably ended up being one of those people that made it to Episode 20. And then thought, well, I can't keep going with my full time job. And this, putting as much effort as I'm putting in without being paid. So the fact that I was able to have that financial partnership from, you know, the 10,000 download mark has meant that I've been able to continue to grow, but also being able to continue that value, and give the community what they want and need, by being paid and turning it into my full time job.
But not only that, but also offering so much value to Defence Bank. It's not like I'm just taking this money from them, and they've got an advert in my podcasts, and that's that. that's not where the partnership ends. I've always been upfront in saying that I don't just want to, you know, have this money and have this partnership, like there's more of a connection, whereas, you know, I traveled to Melbourne often and I educate their staff about defense partners. And, you know, they do different surveys and marketing through me so that they can better tailor their products to defense partners. So it's a win win. But it's not just like cut and dry. They give me money. I do the podcast, there's there's a relationship there. And that's what I wanted from the start. But in saying that that's a lot more work than just taking this money and doing my podcast in my office from home,
Mia Fileman 28:42
For sure. But so, so much more beneficial for everybody. So tell me what kind of information did they need from you, during this negotiation, like downloads? What else were they looking for?
Beck Rayner 28:53
Yeah, so obviously, they needed to see what my downloads were and that I was had this community that were consistently listening and downloading my podcasts. So that was through obviously, me gathering my stats through my dashboard, which I use Lipsyn, so all my stats are in there, they're all gathered in there. And then also my Facebook, Instagram stats and how much engagement I get on posts and how I connect with my community but then also all the different points that I engage with my community whether that be through my email, and my open rate with my email and all of those different points of connection, but then also, you know, if I'm going to offer those points of connection to my financial partner, they want to know that they're going to add value and how many people access my website and as it is one of my blogs on my website that is about home loans offered, a certain type of home loan offered only to defense families and Defence Bank happened to be one of the three providers is that loan at And that scheme, an extra benefit that defense families are able to access. That is the most downloaded and read blog on my site.
So that's obviously a win for them. And that continues. And one of my podcasts that I've done with Defence Bank about [DOHAS], which is the entitlement that fence families are able to access is one of the most downloaded episodes. So that's obviously great for them as well. But that's, you know, that's not just an episode where I just talk about this home loan, that's where I get one of their experts to come on and actually talk about it in simple terms, the way that the listeners want to hear about it, not the way that they've always heard about it in the past, which is very confusing. Often you don't get it, some people don't even know about it. Some people know about it, but still don't understand it. So I was able to tap into that fact, because I am a defense partner myself and say, How can I do this differently so that the community can connect with this topics in a way that they've never been able to connect before. And it's just been a win win for me and obviously, my community, but then also for Defence Bank.
Mia Fileman 31:02
Oh, so good.
Mia Fileman 0:00
I have a DOHAS home loan on my house in Darwin and holy moly exactly what you said about it just being in like a foreign language was so true. It took a long time for us to wrap our head around, you know, the eligibility and how it works and how you go about even getting one of these home loans. Yeah, it's hard to get money out of defense. They I think they do that purposefully.
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All right, I want to talk now about booking guests for your podcast episodes. How do you go about that? How do you like to be pitched? Do you get pitched? Do you go out there and source your own guests? How does that work for you?
Beck Rayner 1:27
So at the start, I had booked guests who I had a connection with, or maybe I was friends with. And I knew a little bit about their story. And I thought okay, that would be a great story to tell on the podcast. And this is how I would do it. So initially, that's how I started it. Because when I started my podcast, podcasting wasn't popular. And people didn't know what podcasting really was there like what I don't understand who's going to be able to listen to this, what am I going to sound like, What do you mean, like how's this going to be? So I kind of needed a few people that I was connected with and personally that I could be like, please just come on a podcast, I promise, I'll let you listen to it, and I edit everything. So it's good, it'll be fine. Like, I'm not tricking you into anything like, you know, I won't put anything to air that you you're not happy with and that sort of thing.
So it sort of started like that for the first I don't know, 10 episodes. And then as people started listening, they were like, ah, I'd love for you to cover this topic, or I've got a great story to tell, or you haven't covered this yet, could I be a guest kind of thing. And that's kind of how it's continued. And now because I have 150 episodes, I'm sort of getting to the stage where I'm like, Okay, well, which topic can I really delve into? And who would be great for that? And how can I find that person? And, you know, what research do I need to do for that kind of thing. But now that I have sort of guests coming to me, the way it works is and I've always done this from the side, I've always sent them a set of questions for them to answer before I even go forward with booking in a time to record because it gives them peace of mind that they know what they going to sort of be talking about. And because we covered things that may have happened like five years ago, 10 years ago, I don't want to be recording for three hours with him going, oh, boy, I can't quite remember this. But I want to send them these questions that sparks their memories and allows them to jot down some notes that we can base the actual questions for the podcast around or that I can go off on a tangent going well, I didn't know that that had happened to you. That's actually what the podcast should be about kind of thing.
It's a little bit of work beforehand. But it definitely pays off in the end result because they feel less nervous, we're guided more and a lot of the hard work is done beforehand. And then we record and then they feel a lot more settled when they're recording because they've jotted down those notes, and they've already got sort of gone over the questions.
Mia Fileman 3:47
And do you have any tips or advice for people looking to pitch to come on to your podcasts or any podcasts?
Beck Rayner 3:54
Firstly, I would say, because I have had people pitch that haven't even listened to the podcast, and that would be just from general, I guess podcast, Booker's or managers who have just got picked up on keywords and gone Yep, I'll just send the press release to that or I'll just, you know, this person is launching this book. So that might be a good fit. I wouldn't go in cold turkey like that. I wouldn't be pitching to someone if you are obviously maybe you've got your own business or you're wanting to get something out of the podcast or you want to use it as part of your marketing. I wouldn't be pitching it as that I more be selling? Well, this is the story. This is what I have to offer. And then the benefit is that, you know, you get to be on a podcast or you get to use it for your marketing or you get to gain some followers from that person's live listenership kind of thing. But I definitely be pitching what's unique about your story or what it is that you're gonna add to their podcasts as opposed to: I want to be a guest on your podcast because I have this business and I want more clients or I want to tap into your community.
Mia Fileman 4:56
Oh my gosh, I had someone through LinkedIn, send me a LinkedIn message. Ah going, can I ask you a favor? Mia? Can I be on your podcast? Full stop. Like, what? Excuse me.
Unknown Speaker 5:10
Maybe? what do you like, What do you want to talk about?
Mia Fileman 5:13
But like we're not friends and even if we were that's not how it works, you know, that's not quite like. And so I just you know, it was very hard not to be rude and just say I book all my own guests, but you need to pitch me on a topic that's going to be of interest to my audience never heard back. Of course.
Beck Rayner 5:32
Yeah, that's the thing like you need to put in a little bit of work to be able to show me that. Okay, you want to come on for this reason, you know, you're not hearing back from this person means that, obviously, they didn't want to put in any work. They just wanted to put their hand up and go, okay, cool. That was easy. I'll come on as a guest. No, it doesn't really work that way. Because what people don't understand. And you know, people might say, Oh, well, you know, why you being so harsh, or just give someone a break. It's like, Yeah, but a lot of time and effort goes into recording the podcast. And I'm not here for other people to get clients or to promote what they want to sell. I'm here to nurture my community and give my community what they need and want. And if I'm going to put so much time and effort into it, then I'm going to do it with the guests that I connect with, and that I see value in. And if you're not pitching that to me, then, of course, I'm not going to spend my time trying to delve into what your story is. If you're coming to me with a pitch, but you're actually not pitching me
Mia Fileman 6:28
So true. So, how do you go about marketing your own podcast? What's in your marketing mix?
Beck Rayner 6:36
Usually what I do is, I guess it's an you would know, it's not as easy as like, Okay, well, I'll just, you know, put up three social posts about my podcast, it's really a lot of time and effort that goes into nurturing the community and growing that community that supports the podcast and listens to podcasts and waits for the next episode kind of thing. So a lot of time and effort is not even just promoting the podcast, but it's building that community and making sure that community is happy. But once I have a podcast go live. So I've always been consistent with that being a weekly podcast. I've now like I said to I wish I had started with breaks factored in, I've now factored in breaks. So I've just had like an eight week break over the Christmas/New Year period. But when I do come back, I keep it consistent so people can rely on the podcast, then I always once it's gone live, I will do three social media posts with audiograms on my socials. So that's Facebook, Instagram, then across, I have some closed Facebook groups as well. So like different points of contact, then via my newsletter as well.
But like you would know, obviously, you're the marketing guru. But just because you've put three posts up, you're like, oh, people should know about it by now. They need to like hear about it. Like, I don't know, 15 times before. They're like, Oh, I must go listen to that episode, if they haven't already automatically downloaded and listened to it. So it's like, how much can I promote the podcast without feeling like I'm overdoing it. But I want them to listen to it because I think that it's a great episode. So what I'll do is I'll spark conversations with my podcast promos. So whether it's, you know, I take an audio grab, and I'll write out the text on on the social media post with something that is topical within the community or something that people like, yeah, I've experienced that too. And I want to join the conversation about that, or I want to hear about her experience. But I always make sure that in my social media posts, I'm asking the community a question or getting them involved in the conversation so that they really want to go, Well, I've got something to add, or I really want to listen to that topic.
Mia Fileman 8:44
So got a lot of work goes into it. But that hard work leads to success. What a groundbreaking idea. Have you done any paid advertising, like paid social media advertising, Spotify advertising?
Beck Rayner 8:58
I should look into that. But I just I haven't delved into that side of things as yet. I guess I haven't been at the stage where, because a lot of my the money that I do make from the podcast does go back into doing things for the community. I guess I haven't set aside that budget yet to do that. But I that is one of my goals for this year to now like Okay, now that everything's working well, I've got this system in place. And you know, mind you, this is a couple years into the podcast. So it's, you know, it's taken time. Now that I'm coming up to 85,000 downloads, and I'm really wanting to get to 100,000 downloads before the end of the year. How many more downloads can and how many more listeners can I find through a proper marketing strategy, Some advertising, which way you know which method or which marketing? I guess method would be the best for me. So yeah, definitely open to ideas. Obviously, you you have all of them but yeah, that's something that I definitely want to look into this year.
Mia Fileman 9:58
Well, the hard thing with you is the wasteage, like, how do you target defense partners because it's not like I go to my Facebook profile, and I toggle. I'm a defense partner in my bio. And so I feel like with you, it would definitely be worth reaching out to an account manager at Pinterest or Spotify, you don't usually get to speak to account managers at Meta who own Instagram, Facebook and WhatsApp. But you can speak to a local Australian based account manager at Pinterest and Spotify and talk to them about how you can go about setting your your audience to reach defense partners, because my concern just hearing that would be there's going to be too much wastage, you're going to reach a lot of women and men, but are they going to be defense partners? So that's that would be the question. But Spotify advertising is a really interesting one. For me. I've run a few Spotify ad campaigns now with incredible results. They've just included video on the platform. And actually using Spotify ads studio is easy and sparks joy as opposed to using Facebook Ads Manager which is hell on earth.
Beck Rayner 11:10
Yes, definitely. And I guess you know, the the other thing to note is that the traditional ways of targeting my niche audience aren't available to me because of the fact that I do make money, and I am a business. So you know, for instance, if I was to target the organizations who are able to access the defense partner community, those organizations are government organizations, and they don't connect with businesses who make money, they only connect with not for profit businesses. And so because I am making money, I'm not able to connect, I'm not able to go to, for instance, the specific information days that defense families go to, I'm not able to get my details in the newsletters that specifically target defense families, I'm not able to connect with the specific people who are paid within departments to connect with defense families and tell them information and give them access to stuff like my podcast, because I make money. So it's a catch 22. It's like, well, if I wasn't making money, that I wouldn't be able to continue doing it. But because I make money and I'm classed as a business, I'm not able to tap into that community even more, because I'd have that block with the organizations that could help me easily help me to do that.
Mia Fileman 12:27
oh, my gosh, this boils my berries. I get it, I understand why that rule is in place, it would make sense for 90% of other businesses, but not in your case, you are a defense partner and the defense organizations should be seen to supporting defense businesses. So either it just like this is the problem with massive organizations is that it's these blanket rules and these blanket policies. There's so much inflexibility for something like this, which is like it's such a service to the community. But anyway,
Beck Rayner 13:04
Such ancient policies as well. And mind you those organizations have been on my podcast and aren't able to promote the fact they've been on my podcast, but they're happy to come and give that information to the community through my podcast, because they know that I do reach so many of the community, as opposed to the small amount of community that they reach. But, still not able to connect or collaborate in a 2023 way, in a modern way that connects with the community the way that they want and need, as opposed to just going by the rules have always been the rules. And that's just the way we're going to continue doing things.
Mia Fileman 13:37
But your service to defense partners is free. You don't charge anyone to list exactly. Oh my gosh, I can't deal Beck, I just can't deal.
Alright, so to wrap this up, because I'm really mindful of your time. And we had a chuckle about this, because we had no end of technical issues trying to record this today. And we are both podcasters.
Beck Rayner 14:01
Two podcasters trying three times to start the podcast, but we got there in the end. So.
Mia Fileman 14:06
We did get there. And it has been such a great conversation. I know it's gonna be really, really valuable to you listening. So I'm glad that we persevered. But Holy guacamole, I wish we had filmed able to record some of that to share that with you.
But I just want to end talking about defense partners and entrepreneurship. And I'd love to get your wisdom on this. But I can't get a job. I just can't. It's just not something that I can do with my closest family member being 3900 kilometers away. And my husband going every two seconds to somewhere. It's just not an option for me. So entrepreneurship is really my only choice. How do you feel about that? Should we be helping defense partners to start businesses because this is a much more sustainable way for them to live this crazy defense life
Speaker 2 14:59
Yeah, I definitely think that post COVID, there's more opportunities for defense partners to tap into the remote work opportunities. And employers understand the benefits of offering people remote work opportunities, which for defense partners is an amazing thing. Because it means that we can, you know, for anyone listening, that doesn't understand how defense families work. We, you know, generally move every two to three years. And that means, you know, leaving starting new jobs and all that sort of thing. But like you said, Mia, it's not feasible to go to a new location and just pick up where you left off in a in a marketing position or in the field that you're employed in, you know, a lot of the time you're over over qualified, or there's just not jobs available in the field that you want them or, you know, with the timings and with the capacity that you have with your defense member being away, and all that sort of stuff.
Beck Rayner 15:48
So, you know, the fact that remote remote work opportunities exist, and that, you know, they've increased post COVID, that's great. But also, with entrepreneurship, that's obviously, definitely a good fit for fence partners, because we can just pick up and take it with us. And we have less gaps in our employment, and we're able to fulfill our passions and work in in the areas that we're working in. But there's also still restrictions with that, in the fact that when we pick up and leave, if you're an entrepreneur, and you've got a business where you have where you sell products, and where you have equipment, defense will not move those products or equipment for you. So you have to then organize a separate removal truck for those things and have your own insurance. And you're not able if you go to a new location, and you want to live in the defense housing that's available, because maybe you can't get into the rental market in the location that you're going to. So you're going to a defense property, you have to get approval to run that business. And it's not a guarantee that you're going to be able to run that business, you have to have enough space to run that business. And sometimes there are no extra benefits to okay, you have a business where, say, for instance, you operate from home and you have clients and you come to the house and you want a separate office. There's no nothing that says that defense will work around you and support you in your career, because you're not the defense member and you're the defense spouse.
So while entrepreneurship and owning your business and being self employed is a great option for defense partners, we're still not completely there in a modern way where we support that. So there's there's still a lot of ways that defense could support that and offer more, I guess, leeway and all that sort of stuff. But then in saying that there's programs that are offered for free for defense partners that are not just for veterans now, whereas before, they might have only been for veterans, but because we've sort of educated those organizations that offer those programs, about why defense partners should also be able to access those programs. Now that eligibility has been extended through organizations like  they offer free entrepreneurship programs for defense partners and veterans. So, you know, we are taking steps forward, but then we're still taking 10 steps back with different ways of supporting defense partners. So yeah, I guess you know, defense and anyone connected to defense that supports a veteran or or current serving ADF member needs to understand that supporting the spouse only supports the member.
Mia Fileman 18:25
And then there was a power outage in Darwin, and everything shut down. Thankfully, I was able to retrieve the recording up until that point, and because it was such a valuable conversation, I wanted to share it with you. I do apologize about the very abrupt ending though. I hope to have Beck back on the podcast soon to discuss the sacrifices that defense partners make and the subsequent resilience that it breeds in us. Please head to militarylife.com.au to check out the military life podcast. It is sensational. Until next time.
Thank you, you listened right up until the end. So why not hit that subscribe button and keep the good marketing rolling. Podcast reviews are like warm hugs. And they're also the best way to support a small business. You can connect with me Mia Fileman, on Instagram or LinkedIn and feel free to send me a message. I'm super friendly.