How do you engage the audience without sounding like a turn-off advertorial? Delving into the art of this today is psychologist, best-selling international author, speaker and podcaster Owen Fitzpatrick.
Help and tips for marketing professionals and brand managers considering or already creating podcasts. Learn how to create and improve podcasts for brands or products you are working on, with quality advice from expert guests who share their knowledge and experience.
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Dusty Rhodes 0:00
Right now on how to build a podcast for your brand, how to use a podcast to sell without sounding salesy, or this from a guy who does just that on his own podcast, which has had over 250,000 downloads. Let's go
Dusty Rhodes 0:34
Hello, and welcome to How to build a podcast for your brand. My name is Dusty Rhodes and today we're helping you with the psychology of selling on a podcast. Is there a proven go to method for selling has been an engaging speaker and how does one sell without sounding salesy. Joining me is a psychologist best selling author, speaker and podcaster Owen Fitzpatrick. He's worked with billionaires, Olympic athletes on huge companies like Google, LinkedIn, Pfizer, and Barclays. He's spoken on stage with such people as Sir Richard Branson and Seth garden. Oh, my God, and his podcast changing minds is phenomenally successful. It's been downloaded over 250,000 times. Tell me first on about the podcast changing minds for people who don't know of it. What is it a bit?
Owen Fitzpatrick 1:30
Sure. So changing minds is a podcast I started a couple of years ago dusty, and it's basically very much around psychology psychology of change. So psychology of changing the way we think change the way we talk to ourselves changing making an impact on other people. So I have three parts to it. One is solo episodes that I do once a week, second part, which is interviews with different experts in the field of psychology or business. And then the third part is what I call the work of series. And every other Thursday, I deep dive into some great psychologist or great business experts books, and sort of decode or take out some of the best elements of it and sort of give some summaries of their work. So there's three different types. But it's all designed to try to help learn to use psychology more to impact the way they communicate the way they think, and the way they live their life.
Dusty Rhodes 2:19
And how to come across better and to sell the idea or whatever it is that you're talking about. Like I want to ask you about more in a moment. But first, tell me that's three different types of podcasts that you do. And you do them regularly. Is podcasting. What you do professionally? Or do you have your professional life on podcast is a little extra in the evening.
Owen Fitzpatrick 2:37
Podcasts is a little extra, I've done I've done probably a couple of 100 episodes in total at this stage over the last two years. It is something that I I've done a lot of because I also feel it helps me as well, it I think it builds a better relationship or connection with you know, listeners and with an audience than any other form of media. Because I really feel you can get into the meat of the matter when whenever you're talking for you know, 20 minutes half an hour, sometimes longer if it's an interview, we're right now in the middle of a hiatus until season three, which is due to come in the next few weeks. And then I'll be straight into that.
Dusty Rhodes 3:11
So to keep it manageable. In some sense, what you do is you break the podcast into seasons, because a lot of people say you should do one of two things, you should be there every single week so that you're part of a person's life. Or you can do the seasons, how many problems would you do in a season? And how many seasons would you do in a year.
Owen Fitzpatrick 3:27
So typically about probably 50 of solo episodes, 25 of the interviews and 25 of the work of series. So generally, there might be like 30 interviews or 30 work of series depending. And what I tend to do is batch them. So I get like a month, maybe a month and a half content done in one in one day. So what I'll do is I'll prep the different episodes beforehand, spend one day just suddenly recording. And then after my, you know, I heal my brain because it's hard to do eight episodes in a row. So after I've done that, then it's just the interviews. So like I do four solo episodes, or let's say five solo episodes, and three, the work of series. And then whenever the person I'm interviewing whenever they're free, I go on, we'd record it. And then I know flip it a little bit and get that ready for production. So that's really how I do it. But I like to batch it because I just don't have enough time every week to do it. So I take slots out of my week to be able to deep dive and get as much done as possible. And that tends to work quite well.
Dusty Rhodes 4:33
Batching is a great philosophy because as you say you will record for 5678 podcasts in a go but then you drip feed them out one at a time per week. And everybody's thinking he does this every week and you've got now once a month. That's That's it. Tell me then about having different series or seasons. If you are running a season for say three months, and then there's a gap of a month or two months and then you're picking up again. Does that affect your numbers
Owen Fitzpatrick 5:00
It can do, I mean, the way I like to do it is I don't take a break, I might, I might miss one week. But I never missed more than one week in a row, if I'm in the middle of a season, I kind of don't let myself do that. So the end of the season, once the once the season finishes, then what I'll do is I'll take a break, people will know. Now, if I don't, you know, relaunch it. And don't make a deal about and reach out to my audience on social media a couple of weeks in advance and let people know and make a big deal Allah below, then probably I would lose audience, but the audience that tends to listen, most of them subscribe, therefore, they get they get the notification. And most of them follow me on similar channel, whether it be you know, in my newsletter, that they sign up from my website, or it's on social media, Instagram, or LinkedIn, whatever. So they already have more than one way to follow me. Therefore, when I do release an episode, they're already primed for usually, because I'll do a trailer, I think I'm relaunching in a couple of weeks. So I'm going to be starting to send out the messages now in the next week or two.
Dusty Rhodes 5:59
So a key then to doing seasons is to make sure that you are connecting with people in as many different ways as you can on their various social media, that they're following you that you have them on an email list. Can you tell me just a little bit about when you started off about podcasting, and how those numbers grew for you? And what was your experience?
Owen Fitzpatrick 6:21
Sure. So I mean, I had relatively Okay, numbers right from the get go, because I have a good bit of following online. And I did, you know, launched the podcast and you know, made it made a bit of a deal about it, just to get the word out as much as possible. What I noticed was that there's certain episodes that connected more than others. So what I would do is every week, I would check, you know, how many downloads I got. And then there was a few episodes in the first season that took off that I don't know why, but they got way more downloads than everything else. And so I started to look at those. And then I started to figure Okay, that's about this topic. And then I did more podcasts on that topic. And sure enough, I got more, you know, more traction on those episodes as well. Now, I would never just stick to that topic, because I've got too many different things that I want to talk about. And I don't always create podcast episodes based upon what the audience is listening to. Because I don't just want to attract audience interest in that. I want to educate the audience and impact the audience in other ways. But certainly, when you pay attention to where you get a lot of your listening from, it suggests how people interact and experience your podcast. And the other thing, as well as getting feedback. You know, when people write comments and stuff, they help let you know what you're doing well, and that's really a lot of the reviews, sometimes you get like, you know, a dodgy reviewer. So which can be mean. But that's kind of part and parcel of getting a lot of people on you, you're always going to get that feedback, and you have to then discern, is there some sense to it. So there's two types of negative feedback, I think, or constructive feedback. One is, when they just insult you, or they just give you a very high level feedback, this is rubbish. This is crap or whatever. I've never really gotten it just as little as that. And then the other one is, when they actually point out some of the specific, right, you know, like, there's too much content, which is something that I have heard before, you know, there's too much stuff and like, from my point of view, I don't see why that's a problem. But it is, and therefore, you know, I have to take that feedback and figure out, Okay, do I need to adjust it. And so I look for both types, I look for the second type, but I expect both types. And then also the positive feedback, which is plenty of which also, sometimes it's General, which is just nice for self esteem. But the older stuff, which is specific is really out books, they tell you exactly what they love so much about your podcast, which is what you can keep repeating. So I think that definitely helps, you know, from the early part, keep adjusting your craft, because I've tried to get better as I worked on it. And as I've done so the numbers also tend to get better.
Dusty Rhodes 9:00
How do you solicit that feedback?
Owen Fitzpatrick 9:02
Every time I'm on the podcast episode, or most of the time, I will say it myself, I say we'd love you know, any subscribes and please let us know rate us. So I do that call to action at the end of it. Because at the end of the day, the way I sort of see it is you're providing them with 20 minutes to 40 minutes of really good material like I figure these two can ask for and I don't think it's an issue and I don't have an issue whenever I listen to a podcast, they say please subscribe, please rate and review, generally speaking, but a lot of people will do it when you just asked right. And also I have sort of an intro and outro and in it mentions it again, but it's kind of almost like you don't even notice it but it's worth more reminder.
Dusty Rhodes 9:44
And then just to kind of wrap up this side of things on the growth curve. How long was it taking you to see some real increase in in listeners.
Owen Fitzpatrick 9:54
You know, it took a couple of months that's been steady ensure you know like when it was first launched got real Really high figures. Because again, it promoted a lot. And then it dipped down a little bit but didn't dip down too much. And then sort of steadily, gradually began to start to build up, and then stayed at a quite consistent level, I think what happens is, is that some episodes do better than others. But even the worst episode is significantly better than the worst episodes from two years ago or whatever. So I think you don't always notice, it doesn't always go. It's not like a straight line, at least it isn't me. It's like ups and downs, which, which continuously sort of move up a little bit more.
It's like watching the stock market. Exactly. It's apt, unfortunately, it doesn't provide the same level of income.
Dusty Rhodes 10:39
It does go to show though, you do need to be consistent, and you need to be kind of in it for the long term, because I think over half of the podcasts that are available at the moment have seven or fewer episodes, because people kind of did the first four or five went, Oh, my God, this is hard. And they gave up.
Owen Fitzpatrick 10:56
You know, you know, I The reason why I didn't give up because there was many times in that first year, even the second year, I was like, I can't do this anymore. But the thing that kept me going was I make a commitment. And my commitment was 100 episodes that I would tell everybody, I'm going to get 100 episodes done, and then we'll see how we get on. And I made that commitment. And I said that number of numerous people, and I couldn't go back in it. And then when I did sec season two, I was like, I'm gonna get another 100 episodes done. So whenever I make a commitment, it kind of forces me into little boxes me and, and that's not always a good thing in life. But in terms of being productive with the podcast, or getting it done. Yeah, it worked.
Dusty Rhodes 11:36
Now, one of the most important things when it comes to podcasts is the presenter, the person who's behind the microphone leading the show. And a lot of what makes them successful is charisma, which is something close to your heart and you've written a book called the charismatic edge. Can you give us your definition of charisma?
Owen Fitzpatrick 11:55
Sure, charisma is an impression you create in the mind of another person. It's a combination of two things, its authenticity, and expressive it. So authenticity means being you more, and expressively beings beings being more of you, right. So, authenticity is when you listen to someone and you know that they're unique, you know that they're different than anybody else, just by the way they talk about the stories, they tell, by their sense of humor, by all the different aspects of their communication, there's something about them, that you can find that anywhere else. And then they express evety is that they're expressive, you can feel what they feel their stories are a little bit more dramatic, more impactful, when they're talking about something passionate, you can feel the passion oozing off them. Or when they're funny, you can feel the playfulness coming from them. So they express themselves very well. And so when I talk about charisma, that's what I'm talking about, I think everyone is born with natural charisma, it's just the lung, the way we develop these fears, that strapless or stop us from expressing our true selves in a full way, being expressing our authentic selves. So we kind of learn to be able to hide ourselves behind that. And therefore, we develop more sort of stability in monotone axes, or monotone voices, you know, restrict our facial expressions, where it's almost like we're hiding ourselves. So what I try to do is help people to be able to tap into who they are their authenticity, and help them to be able to express that more fully. And as a result, they tend to be able to be more engaging presenters be more engaging communicators. And for podcasters, it really is critical that you reveal who you are, and you also express who you are, and you work on your voice tone. So you're not just speaking at one tone the whole time, because then people will switch off. Unless of course you're doing, you know, insomnia podcast, in which case that works great.
Dusty Rhodes 13:43
Do you find then that being authentic and being expressive, and actually being more yourself lends well to a podcast where you're trying to sell an idea or sell a product or sell a service.
Owen Fitzpatrick 13:55
Oh 100% because people value authenticity now more than ever, that's a crucial distinction. That's what we're all craving. We live in a world which for many years, and still in some facets, there's a large amount of fakery going on where people pretend to be something that they're not, people are disingenuous people like all polite to your face. And as Irish people we have a very strong resistance to people are pretending to be nice, because we're cynical enough to know when someone's too sickly sweet that they're more than likely not being real. So for that reason, alone, authenticity is critical for any area. Now, with regards to podcasting, that's where you're talking for 30 minutes, 40 minutes, it's very hard to keep a fake act up for 3040 minutes while talking about a topic while doing an interview. Very hard to do that the week in, week out. And so it's also easier for you to just be yourself, but also from a listener point of view. They want to hear a person if you were to take your podcast, and you were to put a computer voice there. Right and you were just to give the facts and the information. No one would ever listen to your podcast, they don't listen for the information, they listen for your personality, the information should be great, the information should be valuable, it should add value to them. And many people will say that it, but the way you deliver it is critical and the way you deliver it needs to be authentically from you. And it needs to be engaging and entertaining, which means expressing yourself.
Dusty Rhodes 15:21
I think in many ways, it's quite simple to do a podcast, I find it quite simple to do a podcast where I'm interviewing somebody because there's a bit of bounce and give and take and that kind of thing going on. One of the hardest things, I think, to do something that you do very successfully was do solo podcasts. It's just you talking on your own? Yeah. How do you keep an audience engaged when it's literally just you?
Owen Fitzpatrick 15:45
Well, I've spent a lot of time on my own. So I talked to myself all the time. You know, it's not as new as you think. And with the COVID times actually found, because I started going online and delivering training online. And now that's what I'm doing all the time. Like I've pivoted massively, but one of the things I put it down to is I spent whatever it was a year and a half before COVID doing this podcast, speaking with no response whatsoever. So whenever I show up, it's, you know, even you know, even humor or jokes, which I like to, you know, I like to use along the way, when I was teaching in audiences is speaking, because that's what I've been doing for 2025 years, I was used to getting laughter for the last year and a half and COVID, you know, get that everyone's tumbleweed. That's in tumbleweed. And you know, some of the stuff I say, sometimes you can see people laughing, but still, it's not the same. So but I've been doing like podcast episodes where I've been joking. And there's nothing because it's just me in a room, you know, speaking to myself out loud. But the key is, I'm not thinking about the engagement or the interaction. I'm going, what's the value I need? And then I'm really vividly imagining the listener, and I'm imagining talking to them, I'm imagining them less listening to every word of imagining making them What can I do to make this more enjoyable along the way, so they're, you know, I'm imagining them in their car, listen to me, you know, in their, in their car, or listen to me on the train. And as they're driving in? What can make them laugh a little bit? What can make them keep engaged? What can make them go, Well, what can I'm always thinking about that. So I'm vividly soon as I started a podcast episode, I'm imagining that they're listening to me in the car, and I'm speaking to them. And as a result, you know, I get to control what they do, I get to control the fact that they laugh at all my jokes, which is great. I get to control the fact that they're listening with rapt attention, there's no distractions, whenever it's in my imagination, you know, there's no kids pulling out of them. It's just, you know, me and them. And it's a great place to be, even if it's, you know, not even closely related to reality.
Dusty Rhodes 17:56
When you're doing a podcast for a brand, you obviously have to talk about their brand, and you're selling, selling, selling, but how can you balance being authentic and being expressive with the fact that you need to have a lot of salesy type talk, and all the sales expressions that go with it?
Owen Fitzpatrick 18:12
Sure. Well, I think I've built up a relationship with my audience so that they know that whenever I'm talking, I'm talking about it. And they know that whatever I say it's real. And they also know that I stand behind whatever I'm talking about, they know exactly what I'm doing. I'm not trying to hoodwink anyone, they all know that I specialize in influence and persuasion. So from that point of view, whenever I talk about it, they know, the more open I am, actually, the better it is. Because they're no longer thinking, Oh, he's using this or, you know, if I drop it in here, drop it in there, which I might do. But again, I'll qualify it all the time, because I want them to know, there is no games being played here. If you come to my episode, now, I'm telling you about a product I think some of you are going to love. You know, there's lots of free stuff, there's 200 episodes here. So you got lots of opportunities to be able to listen to it. For me, I'm more direct that way. Now, when it comes to if you're looking to be able to, let's say sell products or whatnot, sponsors, right, so we got sponsorships. So what I've noticed works really well is when you put in creative examples, get the podcaster to make it their own, do it in your in your way. Adam Grant does this really well on his podcast work life? Right. So he talks about some of the corporate sponsors, and then he gives a little case study, which is not a million miles removed from actual podcast he does what you what you do is you talk about the kind of results that you get to make your point. So let's say for example, I'm talking about the importance of being entertaining or engaging in your work and your presenting work. What I might do is I go a few years ago, I wrote a book called the charismatic edge. And then one of the most important things I focused on was how to be a more engaging speaker. And what I wanted to do here is just give you an example of that inaction. So so my focus is not Hey, by the way, buy my book, buy my book, buy my book, my focus Here's the information. Here's the strategies. Here's the skills. By the way, if you want more information than the book,
Dusty Rhodes 20:07
Let me ask you one final question. And this really is for people who want to present podcasts or if they're looking for a presenter for a podcast what to look out for. But for people who want to present podcasts, as you say, with the book, the charismatic edge, what would you say are the top three tips on that book?
Owen Fitzpatrick 20:26
Number one, I think you need to work on your voice, vocal variety. And this is really something I learned from polis ladies who was a dear friend of mine, he's voice coach and TV shows like Vikings, he's worked with Oscar winners. And Paul taught me years and years ago about the importance of having variety with your pitch with your pace with your volume, and using pause effectively, and the brain is tuned to difference. So if you speak in a monotone, people very, very quickly get bored. When you speak in the same rhythm people very, very quickly get bored. So what you have to be able to do is sometimes you're going to rise your pitch, and sometimes you're going to lower it. And you don't want to do it in a predictable way. But you do want to be able to do it so that you're getting more expressively into your voice. So that's the first thing work in your vocal variety. The second thing I would say is that always think about in terms of asking and answering questions, some of the best podcasts out there all interviews, if you're doing a solo episode, that doesn't mean that you aren't going to be answering and asking questions. So along the way, when you're structuring your content piece for solo content, starts to ask the questions that you know, the listener will have over the topic, and then respond to it with certain answers. And so once you choose your topic, then break it down into smaller pieces. And it's always asking yourself the question, what value can I give to the listener? What can I teach them that they don't know? What can I inform them of that they're not informed of? How can I impact their life in 20 minutes in 10 minutes and half an hour. And then the third thing I would do is I would make sure the way in which I'm presenting myself the way in which I'm positioning myself, the stories that I use, are all designed to be able to do two core things. Number one, make it fun for them, make it fun for the audience. And number two, make sure that I come across the way I want to make sure I'm positioning myself with the kind of qualities that are most important to me, that needs to be authentic, it needs to truly be me, but I need to show them that side of my persona. Because let's face it, we've all got loads of sides of our personality, we've got the, the type of host when we're pissed off or annoyed, we've got the version of us where we're totally relaxed, and we're like taking it easy. What you have to figure out is out of all the different sides to yourself, which ones do you want people to know us and make sure it's really you and share some of your vulnerabilities as well. People want to know the person speak them as a human being that don't want some robot sometimes, you know, in the past, I could, you know, I've done that I've because i'm i've read in so much I've got all this information. I'm literally just Google. And another thing and another thing I mean total nerd mode, I think when you when you lose yourself in that nerd mode track can turn people off, you know, and so what I think is is much more valuable is to keep the nerd mode because that's part of what you know if that's your thing, that's your thing. But also let them feel a bit of the humanity, let them feel a bit of your, your real side where you're a human being that has you know, ups and downs. Occasionally I'll go into little rants, and I let myself do it because I think that makes the podcast more real, you know, it's, this is the offer annoys me. I'm like, Alright, I'll lean in a bit. Now, that being said, you don't want to do that for more than like 3060 seconds because otherwise, you know, if I was truly to let myself rant well, that could be a whole different podcast with enough material for three episodes a week. So I think number one, vocal variety and number two, ask questions and answer them even when you're doing solo episodes. And number three, let people see the real you
Dusty Rhodes 24:01
Can I just say to the person listening to this podcast, go back four minutes and listen to that last piece again with own because that four minutes is a masterclass and how to be an excellent podcast presenter in four minutes flat on thank you so so much for sharing with us today. I really do appreciate you giving us our time if you'd like to find out more about on his website to get directly to him his Owen Fitzpatrick calm that's o w e n fitzpatrick.com. And we will have links to the various podcasts the book and own as well in the show notes. If you'd like to chat about any of the topics discussed today or about podcasts or if you've any questions at all, you can contact me directly Hello at DustPod dot A You can call me on my office phone, which is a one 960 9099 but for now, thanks for listening