AskPat 566 Episode Transcript
Pat Flynn: Hi, what's up, everybody. Pat Flynn here Episode 566 of AskPat. Thank you so much for joining me today.
Okay, here's today's question from Collin.
Collin Stover: Hey, Pat. My name is Collin Stover, and I am from Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. I want to start off by saying that I think your show is it's all right. I'm just kidding. I love your show, of course, just like everyone else who listens to you. You're fantastic, and you deliver a lot of values so keep that up.
My question today is about tracking and measurement as a new podcaster and blogger. I just started my podcast and blog called the 20-Something Entrepreneur, which you can see at 20se.co, that's not com, .co. I come from a service business background. So I'm used to the standard service business measurements that I can track on a monthly basis. Like the amount of jobs I did, and how much money I made from those jobs, and all that kind of stuff.
To be sure that I'm heading to where I want to go wise. With a podcast that isn't monetized yet it seems a little less cut-and-dry, a little harder to know what I should be focusing on in terms of the numbers go. So should it be the number of downloads I'm getting? The number of visits to my site? What pages people are most interested in? Are there certain numbers that you, specifically, like to track month, by month, by month, aside from what you put in your expense reports or your income reports rather?
Also, I use Blubrry PowerPress if that helps as per your recommendation. I just set up their first free statistics tracking today, but I'm not quite sure, like does that give you all the statistics that you need in total for plays across the board on iTunes that you're in your own site? I'm just a little confused on what numbers I should be tracking because I really, really believe that you should be tracking everything in your business on, at least, a monthly basis if not more often. And just not exactly sure what I should be looking at. Thanks so much, Pat.
Pat Flynn: Hey, what's up, Collin. Thanks so much for the question today. I love this because tracking is obviously very important, but knowing what to track is much more important. It can be tough because there's a lot of things to track, and if we end up wasting time focusing on things that don't matter, the things that do matter get left behind or put in the back burner. We, definitely, want to focus on the right things, and I think it's a smart question for a person who's just starting out to ask.
So here are four things that you need to track. These are things that are going to help you just understand better what's going on and what could be improved and what's working so you could do more of that so on and so forth. The first thing you want to track … if you're a podcaster, definitely, the first thing you want to track is downloads. You want to track how many people are actually listening to the show, because that's going to give you a baseline number that's going to affect a lot of these other things that I'm about to share with you. But the downloads, yes, are very important. PowerPress should give you the downloads across the board but to get a more accurate result go to your server, whether it's Libsyn or SoundCloud or Buzzsprout or Podbean. Whatever your podcast host is they'll tell you how many times that thing has been downloaded, your episodes, and that's where you start.
Over time, hopefully, you could see that number going up. If there's a dip that will give you a sign that something's not right or something is going wrong. Because most podcasters will see a steady growth especially in the first part of their career because they get featured on New and Noteworthy, get that free exposure on iTunes, for example. Then after eight weeks you start to see a dip, and that's normal so don't freak out if that happens. It's just you lose that immediate exposure on New and Noteworthy, but there are obviously some things you could do to increase the number of downloads. That is, asking people to subscribe so they continue to get those downloads. That's why typically it starts to continue to grow over time exponentially, because people who subscribe will get those episodes immediately uploaded to their device.
Beyond that, you could also make sure that you have an easy way for people to get access to the podcast if they're coming from your website. You can have increased rankings on iTunes, so more exposure that way. Could do cross promotions with other podcasters or bloggers. So there's a lot of things you can do. You can have some guests come on who may be very popular or who would be willing to share that podcast too. Here's a quick tip, interview forum owners and group owners on LinkedIn and Facebook. They're going to be the ones who promote it more than anybody because they're being featured. Those are a few things you can do to increase downloads. From there you won't understand what's happening on your site. Even though you might consider yourself primarily a podcaster. I don't know if that's the case, but this is a comment for everybody. If you consider yourself primarily a podcaster you, definitely, want to make sure you have a website, and a website that converts. So we'll talk about that, that's the next step.
Step number two, the thing after track, is, how many people are coming to your site? And where are they coming from? That's another important thing. So here's what I would do, if you have a podcast you want to have a special link that helps you determine how many people are coming from the podcast to a particular page on your website, which we'll call a landing page. This will have some sort of incentive for people to download that converts them into your email list. That's the third thing you want to track. How are those people on your website converting into your email list? That's the third thing you want to track. It's really, really important. Going back to step number two, the traffic on your website. You want to understand where these people are, and what the most popular means of getting to your website is. Not everybody who listens to your podcast is going to go through that special link that you have. You might want to use a WordPress plugin called Pretty Link to easily direct to that particular page on your website if it is a long URL, or you can even get a domain just for that. For example, if you go to EmailtheSmartWay.com that will take you to a landing page on smartpassiveincome.com. I just purchased EmailtheSmartWay.com and forwarded to that particular website page on my blog where people can download email the smart way, which is a lead magnet in exchange for their email address. So that's one thing you can do, and I keep track of that, and that's only mentioned on the podcast, that particular link. The second thing is traffic.
From there you, definitely, want to keep track of, like I said, the conversions into your email list. Also, similar to traffic, where on your website are people converting into your email list? Obviously, you want to have many different opportunities for that. Not just on your side bar, not just at the end of your posts, but perhaps there's a strategically planned pop up that doesn't interrupt a person's experience on your website but more enhances it. You could use lead pages, for example, to help you do that. Creating a lead box where when people click a button to subscribe then a pop up shows up, for example. That's called a lead box. You could also have optin forms on your most popular pages, for example, your About page which is a best practice. Any other pages on your site that seem to be very popular, that's what you could do. Also, like I said, the landing page that's coming from your podcast or anywhere else that you seem to be featured on have extended your reach too.
You also want to make sure you understand how those emails convert into sales, and that's really the final step in the sales process. So conversions are really important because…you really got to keep track of all that. You could get very, very detailed with where people are coming from, and how each of those different peoples convert. But I think just keeping it simple is going to make it the most useful for you without giving you a headache and just spreading you thin.
Downloads of your podcast are really important. You need to know if people are listening, but then how many people coming from your podcast are actually coming to your site? And where else are people coming to your site? What avenues are they coming in from? Then how are those people actually converting into your email list? Then how are people on your email list converting into sales or clicks? Clicks on emails are, obviously, really important.
The number of people who open the emails or the open rates are…it's a vanity measurement. I think what's most important is how many people are clicking on those links. Whether it's to a sales page or to a product or an affiliate offering or just…again, if you're just sharing a link to a blog post that you just published or podcast episode, how many people are clicking? So those are the things I would keep track of. That's what you should be focusing on. Again, it's a journey process. Where during that journey are people dropping off? Where are they excelling and accelerating that growth for your blog, and then just do more just do more of it's working unless if it stop.
Collin, I hope that answers your question, and I appreciate you. I wish you all the best. We're going to send you an AskPat t-shirt for having your question featured on the show. Again, thank you for all the compliments on what I'm up to here. Hopefully, again, like I said, this episode has been helpful to you and everybody else out there. For those of you listening, if you have a question that you'd like potentially featured here on the show just head on over to AskPat.com. You can ask right there on that page.
Also, want to mention that my new book, Will It Fly?, Wall Street Journal bestseller, is now available as an audiobook on audible.com. You can also check it out at Amazon on WillItFlyBook.com. Again, it's available for you to listen to, and I know you guys like to listen because you're here and you've actually completed this episode. You'll hear my voice because I recorded it myself. I was very adamant on doing that, and I'm glad I did. Actually, went in to rerecord some stuff that I wasn't happy with that I initially recorded, and I think you're going to love it. Again check it out, WillItFlyBook.com. Download the audiobook now, you're going to love it.
As always I like to end with a quote. Today's quote is from Maimonides, which is a philosopher from back in the day, I believe. Maimonides, M-A-I-M-O-N-I-D-E-S. He said, “The risk of a wrong decision is preferable to the terror of indecision.” Love that, “The risk of a wrong decision is preferable to the terror of indecision.” Cheers. Take care. I'll see you in the next episode of AskPat. Thanks, guys. Bye.