This is the episode where I have a fangirl moment. A few months ago, I just happened to stumble across a post in the She Podcasts Facebook Group, (It was recommended to me because I was looking to connect with more women in podcasting) where Jessica Kupferman, the co-host, and co-founder of She Podcasts was looking to be interviewed to help promote the upcoming She Podcasts Live conference (It’s my goal to attend the 2nd one in 2020).
So I threw my hat into the ring and this is what came out: a great story, a LOT of laughs and some very valuable advice when it comes to your show format, monetizing your podcast and podcast conference experiences.
If you’re too lazy to read/listen/scroll, here are some key takeaways and resources:
- So I don’t always necessarily think that you should co-host and interview people, you either are going to interact with that one person every time or you’re going to interact with somebody new every single time like what this show is. There are definitely pros and cons to both.
- (Regarding Monetization): The only thing a sponsor wants is the exact right audience. They don’t care, the topic, they don’t care how you sound, they don’t oftentimes listen to how you sound. They want to know that they’re going to if they pay $100, they need to at least get that back in sales, and then some. So if you have an audience somewhere that’s big enough to deliver that, then you’re in business, otherwise, it’s not. You know you got you just have to keep growing and growing and growing.
- But you want sponsors and advertisers that specifically apply to who’s listening or to you or stuff that you love, that’s made your life easier because it’s easier for you to sell. You’re the one that’s selling it, you’re the one that’s recommending, and telling what it’s like to use the product.
- (On diversity in podcast conferences): I know that I wanted a more diverse crowd. I want way more people of color and women of color. And I wanted to hear from people who were LGBT Q and you know, I don’t feel like there’s not a conscious ever effort to do that at larger or other podcasts conferences, because they’re very busy putting together a curriculum that’s well rounded. And I too want to do that. It’s just that I know, out that there are enough diverse voices out there that can cover a well-rounded curriculum and still be from somebody we’ve never heard from before. And that person can be successful in their own right.
She Podcasts Live Conference Oct 11th -13th 2019 in Atlanta, Georgia
Karen Swyszcz 0:00
Hello everyone and welcome again to another episode of The Bacon Bits n Bytes podcast. So today with me I have Jessica Kupferman. Jessica Kupferman is the co-host and co-founder of the She Podcasts brand which currently supports over 12,000 female podcasters and has a digital marketing reach of over 50,000 content creators. She Podcasts Live, the live event created for the She Podcasts community was funded spring 2019 via Kickstarter for double the goal and sold 200 tickets within 30 days. Jessica specializes in marketing and monetizing within the podcasting industry and has been featured in magazines and websites such as entrepreneur, Forbes, Business Insider, Social Media Examiner, and Yahoo Finance.
She has also been a featured guest on podcasts such as Entrepreneur on Fire, Peter Shankman Faster Than Normal and The New Media Show. She has been honored to speak at the NAB show, blogHer, Social Media Marketing World, Podcast Movement, and many other blog and podcasting conferences. Welcome to the show, Jessica.
Jessica specializes in marketing and monetizing within the podcasting industry and has been featured in magazines and websites such as entrepreneur, Forbes, Business Insider, Social Media Examiner, and Yahoo Finance. She has also been a featured guest on podcasts such as Entrepreneur on Fire, Peter Shankman Faster Than Normal and The New Media Show. She has been honored to speak at the NAB show, blogHer, Social Media Marketing World, Podcast Movement, and many other blog and podcasting conferences. Welcome to the show, Jessica.
Jessica Kupferman 1:28
Thank you so much for having me.
Karen Swyszcz 1:30
Oh, no problem. I am really excited for you to be a guest. Because you’re actually my first international guests. Like I know you’re based in the States, right?
Jessica Kupferman 1:39
I am. Where are you?
Karen Swyszcz 1:40
I’m in Canada, like, west of Toronto.
Jessica Kupferman 1:43
Karen Swyszcz 1:45
Yes. north of the border. I don’t know if you could tell by my accent. (laughs)
Jessica Kupferman 1:49
Not yet, not yet. Yeah, actually. Um, but I love that. First of all, I just want to say I love the title of this show because everyone loves bacon and bacon makes everything better.
Karen Swyszcz 1:59
Even though I don’t eat a lot of bacon. But like when I do have it, it is very satisfying.
Jessica Kupferman 2:03
It’s always the best. So it’s a perfect title for a podcast.
Karen Swyszcz 2:08
Yeah. So I’m very curious to know, how did you get into podcasting? Was this something that you’ve been wanting to do for a while or you kind of stumbled into it?
Jessica Kupferman 2:15
I sort of stumbled into it. At the time, there were no other women interviewing other women, especially small business people. And I was trying to have some online growth other than what I was putting together myself. And it seemed like a podcast would be like a quick way of getting in front of a lot of audiences. I really wanted a speaking career. But I knew also that I would be trying for a baby. So I didn’t want to start traveling around even if it was local and depend on that for money if I knew I was going to give birth soon and not be able to do that. So I started a podcast, where I interviewed other women entrepreneurs. And I loved the idea of it. I actually was invited to be on someone else’s show first, and then I was very, I felt very jealous of her for having her own radio show. Because actually, like when I was a kid, it was something I used to pretend all the time was like, I had my we had a tape recorder and a microphone and my sister and I would always pretend like we were game show hosts, like all kinds of weird stuff. So it seemed very natural to me. And I loved how she was like, Okay, now we’re going to talk about this segment. Now it’s time to talk about this segment. And I was just like oh my God, she’s Dave Letterman. I love it.
So I started my own. It was called Lady Business Radio. And it sort of was like, it was like a perfect way for me to first of all start a women’s entrepreneurial show because so many that were happening at the time Entrepreneur on Fire, Mixology, Smart Passive Income, School of Greatness. They were all interviewing men, which I don’t think was sexist as much as it was them trying to emulate who they admire. And if you’re men, you usually try to emulate men. So I don’t think that was conscious. But I but it did frustrate me because I thought, well, I’ll never get on these shows. And then I thought, well, I’ll just host it. And then I’ll be able to ask everyone on my show, and then I’ll be able to talk to them. And then they’ll be my friend. And then I’ll have all these influential friends.
So, that made me super excited. And also the talking as you can tell, I’m a chatty Cathy, that made me super excited as well. So it just all kind of clicked at once. And then as soon as the idea hit me, I couldn’t do anything else. For two weeks. I was like obsessed with getting it up. And like everything else I was doing just dropped until I had the branding done and the website up and like I just became obsessive over it.
Karen Swyszcz 4:28
Mm hmm. And in addition to having like your own solo podcast, you co-host with Elsie Escobar on She Podcasts. So how is ok couple questions first. How did you guys meet? And how did you like know that you could be good co hosts together? Were you friends prior to?
Jessica Kupferman 4:45
Yes and no. So we met at, there’s an online business school for women. It used to be called Rich, Happy and Hot B school. But now it’s called Marie Forleo’s B school. But it was an online course about how to have a successful online business, selling your information or knowledge. And I was a web designer and I wanted to do a school that how-to, I really want to teach people how to sort of do their own web design, because people are DIY and all over the place with literally no knowledge as to how to do that. It was frustrating me.
So I took the course, Elsie was you know, at the time, there were about 350 students now there’s like 20,000. But it was like 2011. She was another one of the students. She was a yogi, a yoga instructor and a master Yogi. And she was I think, wanting to somehow monetize her podcast at the time, which was Elsie’s Yoga Class. So because Elsie is the type of person that like literally a website to her is like her name and phone number and email address. Like she doesn’t give two hoots about web design. And I on the other hand at the time, and still now a little bit I find yoga and yoga speak to be alien on some level. So like, I feel like we didn’t really interact that much like, like, what I will say about the course of the time is that no matter how different all the women were, we all had a super understanding and respect for one another and for all of our differences.
So it didn’t matter if you were in France, it didn’t matter what kind of business you had, like, we all had this general understanding that like, if we did business with one another, we would always pay on time, we’d always treat each other with respect would always insist on paying for the other person’s time. So like if they try to do something for free would say no, what’s your hourly rate because you need to charge what you’re worth, you know like we were learning these things together.
So Elsie and I were like ships in the night until I started Lady Business Radio. I didn’t even know she had a podcast, to be honest with you. And then at one point, she posted in that group that she’s a podcast consultant, and she can help podcasts grow. So I was like, sweet. So I hired her to give me a bunch of advice, which she did. It helped me grow. And then I was on my way to a conference.
My first conference I think about podcasting was called New Media Expo. And it was in Vegas and all the flights got canceled cuz it was like January 3, all the flights got canceled. And I was like frantically looking at airlines. And you know, I was like looking at Twitter to see who else was going like so I was following the hashtag for the show. And I saw little Elsie tweet: “I have a layover in Philly, and then I’m on my way to Vegas.” And I was like what flight you know, like I was like, desperate to get out. So she told me and I like in my pajamas ran to the airport. So hurry all packed like I didn’t. You know, I didn’t know there were any flights going on in Philadelphia. So I was very excited. We got there. And then there’s some certainty even then it was a little rocky, like, like Elsie needs me at the airport. And we’re so excited to meet each other for the first time because we’ve been online friends now for about three years, and I’ve been her client. So I suggest asking the guy next to me to switch seats. She won’t do it.
Karen Swyszcz 7:43
Jessica Kupferman 7:44
She will not do it. She was like, No, it’s okay. I’ll just sit back here. And I was like, alrighty then like that. I thought that was a little strange because you know what a coincidence and what it was all chance happening. And then she’s like, Nope, I’m going to sit back here and read my whatever. And I was like, all right, then when we get there, and I want to hang out, like to know a little better. She’s got to go to Whole Foods, like immediately. She’s like, I have to go to Whole Foods, and I need a breast pump. And I was like, and I’ll talk to you later. Went my way and she went her way. And then I mean over the course of the week, I did get to know her better. But I also got to know a lot of women podcasters better and I was kind of enamoured by how much better their advice was for podcasting than the men’s advice I was getting mostly because they were married, they had children, they had lives.
And a lot of the men gurus still at the time, they still are Lewis Howes, John Lee Dumas Single, single, no children, no children. I don’t know about Andrew Warner, but Pat has like three VAs and his wife works from home. It’s like they have all the time in the world to do whatever they advise other people to do.
But women get it. And so when I got home from that conference, I started a Facebook group called Women in Podcasting. And I invited Elsie because, you know, I knew she podcasted. I just invited people that I knew had podcasts, or that I had met at the conference was like seven people. And Elsie was very excited because she said, I’ve been thinking about doing a Facebook group for women podcasters for so long. And I was like, really, because it took me 10 minutes to set up, like how long do you have to think about it? I don’t understand. and she was like, Yes, and I’ve always wanted to do it. And like, Can I invite some people? And I was like, sure. Two days later, there’s 300 people in it. I was like, dang, she has a lot of people. She’s been doing it a long time. And then, you know, a couple months later, she said, “You know, I’ve also always wanted to do a podcast about women’s podcasting. Would you like to do with me?” She invited me it’s not like I know her very well. But we had this mutual respect for one another. And so I said yes. And so we had actually have a bit of a business relationship.
First, we sort of if you listen to our first like episode, that’s us kind of testing each other out. We’re getting to know each other. I mean, but as you and I are talking, you know that like, I have no filter, I’m you know, I don’t have a I don’t have any qualms about like pointing out when things are funny. And Elsie for all the reasons I’ve said plus a million other reasons is hilariously funny. And it’s never on purpose. But luckily, she has a sense of humor about it. Like she I am not the only person to tell Elsie, She’s hilarious and ridiculous. So like I’ve said, so the big our first episodes are a lot of me getting to know her, teasing her, making fun of her, you know, and through working together being through working together. Even though I already had a mutual trust from being her client. We, you know, I learned that, when you have partnerships, you really don’t know. I mean, there’s a lot more about Elsie that I could have known. But luckily, this project was like a side project, I didn’t have all my eggs in any kind of basket, we’re just like, let’s just see how it goes.
So over the course of time, I learned we have the same education and a similar, you know, she’s an immigrant to this country, we have similar backgrounds, and that we grew up learning a lot of same stuff, listening to a lot of the same music. You know, we’re similar age, I didn’t even know that about her. We live very differently. And we prioritize things very differently as far as like our day to day lives. But we’re also the same age. And we’re both into tech. So it’s like we have things in common and things we don’t.
So the other thing I think that makes us good partners that we may or may not have known is that we each have strengths that the other person can’t stand to do like she never wants to talk about. She’s great at marketing, but she likes to do this, like grassroots organic, get people involved stuff like I like to like automate and spread. You know, like, I like to talk about the money. She wants to talk about, like, changing community, one person at a time. And I’m just like, right? Well, how are we going to monetize this thing? You know, so we complement each other really well. And I’m grateful because if she wanted to talk about the stuff, I want to know, if you’re both about money, we wouldn’t have as good of a group. But if we were both about community would probably make each other barf. So it works out really well. But yeah, we had no idea that it would be this, which I think sometimes is what makes great things because if you try to plan to be great, it’s never gonna work out. Right?
Karen Swyszcz 11:58
Yeah, that’s true. I think it’s really cool how you were using the first few episodes as to kind of, you know, interview each other. And it just became like, more organic. So I’m curious to know, say there’s somebody who’s, who wants to start a podcast or like, kind of on the fence. They’re scared and whatnot, would you recommend them trying to do it with a co-host first? Or would you say going the solo route is better? Or really depends on your goals?
Jessica Kupferman 12:28
That’s such a hard question because I know,
Karen Swyszcz 12:29
Oh sorry (laughs).
Jessica Kupferman 12:31
That’s okay. No, no, it’s just that I have a comedy show with a friend that I’ve known since college. And it can be trickier. So like, if you are going to do a co-host, I don’t know that I necessarily recommend it’s a friend. I do think it should be someone that you respect in your industry that you, you know, can trust and knows will produce what you need them to produce on time. And well done. Like, you know, if you have them doing the marketing, you want to know probably beforehand that you can trust them not to disappoint you, which is again, hard to predict.
But friends are different because it can ruin friendships if it doesn’t work out. If one of you gets tired of it, the other person is left in the lurch. And it’s like if Elsie got tired of it and wanted to do something else like now we’re friends so it would hurt. But like the first six months, I would have been like che sera, sea. And when I would have gone on with my life like now, I don’t know what I would think I mean, well, because we’re friends, I’d probably be happy for whatever success she was chasing. But when you have old friends and you start as friends, that’s a whole different ballgame. So the other thing is that I have three co-hosted shows, no interview shows.
So I don’t always necessarily think that you should co-host and interview people, you either are going to interact with that one person every time or you’re going to interact with somebody new every single time like what this show is. There are definitely pros and cons to both.– Jessica Kupferman
But I will say that in my experience, all I have never followed through on all the co-hosted shows that I’ve attempted. So I have 3 co-hosted shows now. But I think this is a trickier thing to navigate. I have at least four or five other shows that I’ve tried to do with other people as co-hosts that haven’t worked out for various reasons. Whereas the interview show, I did for a really long time. And it was new and different every single time and I never knew what to expect it. And that’s kind of fun. That’s kind of a fun way of doing things. And really the only person you have to trust is yourself.
So I would say for somebody new, that’s an easier way to go. Because you’re not depending on someone else to do equal work. You don’t have to observe and then resent them. If they’re not doing equal amounts of work or you know, there’s not one other person that you rely on. So you can get the hang of podcasting if you’re just focusing on yourself. And that’s true for both an interview and a solo show, I think.
Karen Swyszcz 14:47
Yeah, I’ve been finding that I prefer I think I prefer interviewing different people just because you know, I get a variety of guests and get to ask a variety of questions. And I actually struggled even I only have the two solo episodes, but actually struggled to like talk about myself. I don’t know, I’m just not really one to, you know, do a monologue.
Jessica Kupferman 15:08
Yeah, so I have done one before as well. And the trick, the way I got used to it was I pretended to talk to Elsie and it really helped. And I mean, I know you don’t have a co-host, but you could pretend to talk to a sibling, a parent, somebody that you or, you know, like, if you have an established show with the interview, and you know, there are two or three people that are listening every single time pretend to talk to those people, because I think the idea of talking to strangers is daunting. And this is actually the exact reason why I hate doing a video show. I can’t I would love to do a YouTube show by myself. But I have the same hang up when it comes to video. Like I just feel silly talking to myself, and people can see me doing it.
Karen Swyszcz 15:48
I know. Same here.
Jessica Kupferman 15:50
I just feel weird.
Karen Swyszcz 15:50
I hate video. (laughs). I know it’s important.
Jessica Kupferman 15:55
I know it’s important, but I never want to do it ever.
Karen Swyszcz 15:57
Yeah, it’s just one of the things like the times I’ve seen myself doing videos, I noticed I have crazy eye. Like I tend to look everywhere except the camera or I’ll look at the screen, instead of actually looking at the cameras and making eye contact with people like no podcasts. Less stress.
Jessica Kupferman 15:57
Yeah. Actually, and I’m like, why is that hair sticking up? And then I like lose my train of speech. And I can’t finish my you know, like, it’s a whole disaster for me. But for audio, I just pretend I’m talking to someone like, I’m on a Zoom call or something, you know.
Karen Swyszcz 15:57
That’s a really good tip. I’m gonna keep that in mind for next time.
Jessica Kupferman 16:29
Try it. I’m just experiment. Yeah, see if it works.
Karen Swyszcz 16:32
So it’s quite obvious based on your bio, you’ve had many achievements. Um, so I guess with respect to people who are looking into podcasting, perhaps you can provide some inspiration like how has podcasting, you know, helped your business your brand or going for that cheesy, afterschool special, how has podcasting changed your life?
Jessica Kupferman 16:52
I really, really wanted an avenue to be in front of an audience, I really wanted a speaking career and I could, I wouldn’t necessarily do it. And I was blogging, and I’m a pretty decent writer. But some people have a personality, that just packs more of a punch when you’re experiencing it live. And when people are reading what you write, it’s not as you can’t control how they’re reading it. I mean, like, I can control what people are hearing right now, because of the way that I’m saying things. But what if I were writing this, it would be completely impossible.
So knowing that I have a more, I was gonna say, outlandish was the word that came to mind. But let’s just say dynamic personality, it has really helped in that when people hear me talk, they have not had to research before they know they want to hire me at first for web design, branding, and marketing, and then for podcast coaching and consulting or to speak. So it has helped me have a speaking career once I had the babe. And you know, he now he’s five, almost. So I’ve been able to sort of steer my career in that direction. But also, the notoriety that has come along with podcasting, I think is because I would have never had it otherwise, because I was every other blogger, just blogging about even if it was blogging about my life.
And I think that life blogs, and I think blogs are fascinating. But the amount of commitment it takes for someone to be a fan of a blog is heavy, whereas you can turn on a podcast, you either you know right away if you like me or you don’t like me. And so you know that people who are listening really like you and you’re making a huge impact in them. So I guess the answer to your question is like, I know that the things that I say on my shows impact other people because they tell me, and I’ve never heard that from seven years of blogging. No one ever wrote me and said, I read this article, and it changed my life. But I’ve had people since I’ve started, say, I heard this interview you did with the other woman that has ADHD, and I got my daughter tested. And it’s a work, you probably saved her educational career. Because I would have never said anything about medicine until I heard you. And you know, Kendra, talk about it. Or, you know, my daughter had mental illness. And I talked about her having borderline personality disorder. And I’ve had a couple people saying, I heard that I’d never heard of borderline, but I looked it up. And now she’s diagnosis and she’s getting treatment. Like, I don’t even talk about mental health or Brain Stuff. I just happened to mention it at one point. And there are people out there that are better for it. That’s amazing. To me, that’s something you can’t get if you’re just doing branding lessons on a blog. So it kind of puts a weight on the you know, or you know, you can now weigh your impact on some level. And probably if there’s two people who tell you there’s at least 10 other people who haven’t had a chance to tell you or don’t know how to tell you or are afraid to tell you, and maybe I’ve impact them negatively, but whatever I’ve made an impact. Impact is impact.
Karen Swyszcz 20:00
Jessica Kupferman 20:02
I just feel like I feel like there’s so much more meaning to what I’m doing regardless of what I’m talking about.
Karen Swyszcz 20:08
Mmhmm, yes, interesting that you mentioned that you have been blogging for seven years because I started my blog around 2012. And I knew I was an anonymous and I didn’t know what I was doing and just not really taking it seriously. But when I decided to take it seriously about like four or five years ago, and started to promote my posts more and show who I was people did reach out to me and like comment on the things that I shared on social media saying like this is really great, but I mean, what I did was infusing a little bit more of like my personality cuz I people find this very hard to believe. But I’m actually a lot more sarcastic more like piss and vinegar than most people realize. But just kind of touching base on the podcast how you said, when people like, first listen to the first couple episodes, they get a sense of who you are. And that’s kind of one of the reasons why I started the podcast was to reach a different audience and then also to, for people to see a little bit more of my personality, which is very like sarcastic, silly, silly humor, just kind of talking about you know, anything and, and everything.
Jessica Kupferman 21:12
Plus you sound smart. You’re funny. No, but I mean.
Karen Swyszcz 21:16
(laughs) I try.
Jessica Kupferman 21:17
People can fake that in writing a blog post. But if you are smart and articulate and humorous, like, now they know for sure that you know what you’re talking about. You at least sound like you know what you’re talking about, which is something I felt like I couldn’t get. I mean, I could just couldn’t get through that way with blogs. And I mean, I like I said, I know I’m a pretty decent writer. It’s just that I wanted an audience. Maybe I’m an applause whore. I don’t know.
Karen Swyszcz 21:42
(laughs) I like that term.
Jessica Kupferman 21:46
I felt lonely and I needed something different. I’m not even an extrovert, but like, I just felt like I’ve been on stage my whole life. I just needed to interact with other people. And you know, and make it feel like I made a difference in a different way. I guess.
Karen Swyszcz 22:00
So do you consider yourself more of an introvert then?
Jessica Kupferman 22:06
I’m what’s called an outgoing introvert, which is like, I’m excited to be around people. I’m excited to be in front of them. I’m excited to meet people and talk to them as long as they want. I don’t enjoy being in the center of a large party. Like if there’s a room full of 500 people, I will not be the one in the middle floating around talking to everyone I stick with like seven. You know, I stick with a few people. It’s really bad actually because I’m not. I want to be a better networker, but I have a hard time like pushing myself out of the corner.
Karen Swyszcz 22:38
Yeah, same here.
Jessica Kupferman 22:39
Yeah, it’s really hard for me and I mean, I’m, it’s actually quite beneficial that I have more notoriety now. Because then people come up to me and I don’t have to feel awkward. I kind of really am grateful for that. So grateful for it, because it was really hard for me to do. And then after I’m in a large group or I speak in front, one of a large group I, it takes a lot out of me and I think and I mean, my in-laws are mostly extroverted, and I see them like if they get the chance to be alone. They’re sad, like, oh, nobody wants to play with me. And I’m like, That’s the dream. Don’t you get it?
Enjoy it. It’s so quiet here.
Karen Swyszcz 23:20
I love being alone.
Jessica Kupferman 23:22
But nobody wants to talk to me. I’m like, why do you want to talk to them?
I don’t understand. Like, it makes no sense to me. So, but again, I enjoy I am enjoying this conversation. I enjoy parties, like I said, but I I don’t ever want to be the center of a party. I could never DJ. I could never MC like a party. I could do like a conference, but not like, party people, put your hands in the air. Wave ’em like you just don’t.
Like I can’t do that. No, no, no.
Karen Swyszcz 23:49
Yeah, that’s really interesting that you mentioned that because I consider myself to be very introverted. And I’m not a big fan of parties. But when you mentioned that you said you can’t be DJ or an MC. I thought to myself, well, I could be an MC or DJ. Why? Because I felt like I have purpose. So I know exactly why I want to do like, Okay, I have this playlist, I’m going to you know, do whatever this set is going to be 80s, this one will be next be 90s hip hop. And then for MC Okay, I know, I’m introducing people, there’s an agenda. Whereas if it’s just a party I’m invited to and it’s free for all. That’s where it freaks me out. I’m like.
Jessica Kupferman 24:25
Yeah, I would need a lot of drinks but I think I could do it successfully. Like DJ or MC, I would need a whole lot of drinks. And I do karaoke and large crowds, but I usually have a few drinks first. And actually just reminded me of like, in college, I wish I had known in college that I was introverted, because it would have saved me probably a lot of money. So like my I have two friends. My two best friends were Geminis. They’re extremely chatty and talky. And I mean, not all but these two were very extroverted Geminis and so we would go to a party, or a fraternity party or a bar, their whole thing was to grab a beer from the bar, and then literally talk to everyone in the room without fail. And I could not do it, I would get so I wanted to go, because I wanted to have fun and talk to who they were talking to you. But not at such a fast pace, though. Like I felt like they were like, “Hi, oh my God, how are you?” That’s and I couldn’t, so I would get stoned, then meet them up for wherever we were going. And then they would get their beers and start floating around the room. And I would just watch like and wish that I had, I didn’t even wish that I would actually watch them and be like, why do they want to talk to every person in this room when I’m hilarious. And I’m right here, you know, like, like, I all I wanted to do was kind of hanging out with them in the environment. But they wanted to talk to everyone and it just exhausted me. So I would get stoned before I left because at least I could be in my own head that way and not feel. I think I was probably I mean, I didn’t think about it at the time. But looking back I know now that I was like self-preserving my energy or at least putting up a wall between me and the awkwardness that I would have felt had I been sober. Does that make sense?
Yeah. Yeah. It’s weird. So I mean, now I know. Like now I feel so much less weird having done that because I used to be like, why would I do that? It’s such a fancy social, if you want to interact with them, like why did you but now I realize so it’s good. But you know, hindsight is 2020 right?
Karen Swyszcz 26:09
So I want to talk a little bit about the business side of podcasting. And I think my mom will really enjoy this because when I started the podcast even only after having six episodes up, she’s like, well, how are you going to monetize this podcast? Like what do you what are you going to do? So I wanted to ask like a few questions, especially for those people who you know, like the idea of podcasting but again eventually want to monetize it. Um, at what point should you like even consider, like sponsorships? Would it be based on like, the number of downloads or like how many reviews on iTunes?
Jessica Kupferman 26:59
I don’t I really think either the things I feel like it should be about when you have grown a community that you can sell. Reviews, definitely not because you can pay people to review your podcasts and I don’t think sponsors even look at that big sponsors look at downloads because big sponsors like Hello, Fresh and Casper mattress, they have a mathematical formula that they use to know whether or not they’ll get a return on their investment. But they are buying like 20, 30,40, 50 shows at a time. So that’s why if you are new, or if you want to monetize a show that has a niche, or if you know that your audience is loyal and rabid, but you have let’s say 500 downloads an episode or even 200 downloads an episode, you can monetize that as long as you have an audience that is the exact right audience for whomever the advertiser is. So what’s great to do is even when you start is somehow create a survey or use a Facebook group or page or something where you can get insights on their demographics because that’s sellable. And then later, you can you know, and if you are building your social community, even if you have no downloads, but you have like a pretty healthy Twitter or Facebook, that sellable as well.
The only thing a sponsor wants is the exact right audience. They don’t care, the topic, they don’t care how you sound, they don’t oftentimes listen to how you sound. They want to know that they’re going to if they pay $100, they need to at least get that back in sales, and then some. So if you have an audience somewhere that’s big enough to deliver that, then you’re in business, otherwise, it’s not. You know you got you just have to keep growing and growing and growing.– Jessica Kupferman
Karen Swyszcz 28:54
Jessica Kupferman 28:54
But yeah, the whole point of ads just in general, like if you think about forget podcasting, if you think about it newspaper ad, let’s say you have a, you know, women’s shoe store, and you want to put an ad the newspaper. I mean, you are young, old enough to remember what a newspaper is. Right? Just checking.
Karen Swyszcz 29:13
Oh, yeah, definitely. (laughs)
I am older than I look.
Jessica Kupferman 29:17
Okay, just checking. Okay, so in the newspaper, like, where would you place that ad?
Karen Swyszcz 29:24
The front page.
Jessica Kupferman 29:25
On the front page, if you could get it.
Karen Swyszcz 29:27
Above the fold.
Jessica Kupferman 29:28
Above the fold, definitely. But if they have a lifestyle, or if they have a parenting section, anywhere where you know, you wouldn’t put it in sports, right? Because men are usually the ones reading sports and the chances of a woman seeing that are low. So you would go to where you know if the newspaper has a circulation of 2 million. And the front page is like, you know, $5,000, you don’t have that you need to do an inside. I used to sell newspaper advertising too so I feel like it’s a good example. Even though I may be losing people, and I’m sorry, if I am but the point is, when you go niche, even though you’re spending less, you’re getting exactly the people you need. So it’s not always about reach. It’s not always about breadth, those larger companies, for them, it is about breadth. For them, it is about reach because Hello Fresh, Casper mattress that applies to everyone. But you want sponsors and advertisers that specifically apply to who’s listening or to you or stuff that you love, that’s made your life easier because it’s easier for you to sell. You’re the one that’s selling it, you’re the one that’s recommending, and telling what it’s like to use the product. It’s so different than I mean, yes, they create the bullet points and even sometimes copy that you’re going to say, but it’s only effective if you have used the product and can vouch for it.
Karen Swyszcz 30:47
Jessica Kupferman 30:48
You know, so that is not usually an answer that people want to hear. They usually want to hear you need 20 reviews and iTunes and you need 10,000 down, you don’t need 10,000 downloads per episode or even five or even two else, I get like 730 to 1000 per episode and we charge $1,000 a month for ads for four ads 250. I mean, there’s no mathematical download formula in there at all. It’s just what we feel like, we want to charge for that spot. And you know, I mean, it’s 1000 women podcasters and then 13,000 in the group. And we just feel like that’s fair. And it’s kind of like we kind of figured out the pricing by our gut like 500 feels like too much. And that we’re you know, they’re not gonna get their money’s worth 100 feels like we’re cheapening ourselves. So I mean, there’s no, you can do it that way and be quite successful. There’s a lot of people who, who do it that way they you know, like, I have a friend who does Medicare nation. I think her show gets like 300- 400 downloads an episode, but she has a 1200 a month sponsor who’s just selling stuff to Medicare patients. So it’s perfect.
Karen Swyszcz 31:54
Right. So in addition to ads, I’m just also thinking back to when I was doing more of like blogging and like sponsorships. I think like a lot of people just only assume ads as a way of monetizing you say like your blog or your podcast, but like for me, I’ve done like consulting work and like online course and I know that can also be said to for podcasting. Like I know there are podcast course available, you know, once you’ve kind of built up the experience and knowledge. But then you had mentioned about like Elsie being a podcast consultant, and then I’m curious to know if you could share a little bit about that, or would she be one to reach out to you regarding just, you know, like, how did how does a podcast consultant work?
Jessica Kupferman 32:41
So Elsie, so she focuses a lot on. First of all, she has a group coaching program that she does twice a year where she gathers in about 12 women and they discuss what they want their podcast to impact in the world, and then how they’re going about doing it. Now then Elsie sort of like retools it so that it’s more impactful and fits with their life. It gets, it’s getting out the message that they want to express. But we also work together, we have like sort of what we call like a one-two punch, where people will work with her for 90 minutes and get sort of an overview of this is what I want to say, How am I supposed to say it? How often do I say it? She gives them all that about the content, and community and a little bit of growth, and then they come to me, and I give them more like sales messages to script, you know, sales funnel, opt-ins, how to make a business plan around whatever, they just discussed, the two of them.
Karen Swyszcz 33:36
Jessica Kupferman 33:36
So I think that there are also podcast consultants out there that just want to consult about how it sounds. And they will listen your show and then tell you how to use a mixer, which is fine. I don’t know anything about tech. And I mean, I’m more of a video person. Like I know a lot about video tech, my dad was a video producer. But I really don’t know that much about audio tech. So for a long time, my shows weren’t edited, or I wasn’t using the right mic. And I didn’t know or care even. Because as long as it was getting out, I was perfectly happy. But now I have someone taking care of that for me.
But I want people to hire me if they want to learn how to make money with what they have. And I can look at any show and say, well, you’re not differentiating yourself enough or you’re not talking about yourself enough, you’re the host, you’re the main part of this show. Or no one can tell you have a podcast on your website because you have yet to add it or when you do your social, your links aren’t going to the place you want them to go like little things like that. They’re tweaks, sometimes three, sometimes 300. But they make a huge difference in how successful you’re going to be. It’s all about effectiveness for me and process. And having a goal and doing what you need to do to get to that goal.
So yeah, I mean, a lot of the goal does matter. But there are lots of ways to monetize the show. Besides just being even a podcast consultant, like, you said, online courses, you can also do live events, you can also have memberships, you can also there are lots of podcasters that just have a podcast to drive people to hire them for coaching and consulting about all kinds of different things. Real Estate, life coaching, love coaching, health coaching, business coaching, they don’t want ads, because they want to give the content for free, just hoping that they’ll get client after client after client after client for me. At first, that was my goal. And then I also wanted a speaking career. So start talking about you know, I’d love to speak and I’m having so much fun. And then someone would ask me, and then I would say how much I loved it and it just kept snowballing, then you can be a paid speaker, or you could have a job in podcasting, where someone pays you to do your show or pays you to do their show and host their show. There’s all different, you can also do in-person events, like a VIP day, or I mean Elsie and I’ve done workshops together and now we’re going to have a big conference in the fall.
Yeah, so I mean, it just depends on it, you know, you kind of have to think like, okay, in an ideal world, what do I want to do with this podcast? Do I really, I mean a lot of the paid shows. Those people are just the talent, and then they have producers and salespeople and all kinds of other people like Do you want a team so that you can just focus on your content? Or do you want to be known as an expert in this field? And then you have to give people different call-to-action based on what you want to achieve.
Karen Swyszcz 36:17
So speaking of the conference, yeah, that’s the next topic I’d like to chat about. Because this is something that, um, well, I’ve heard of, and I’ve seen podcasts or conference, you know, in my social media feeds, but I haven’t seen anyone that’s like, specifically or geared towards females. So yeah, just provide us with all the details about it. And the goal behind it.
Jessica Kupferman 36:40
So there’s been podcast conferences for about five years, I think the first was in 2014, or 2015, was podcast movement. And they did a Kickstarter as well, by the way, they’re really fun. I always have a great time. But there are certain parts of it that like, I mean, as usual, I’m always trying to fix everything that I feel is broken, because it’s just mother does. And so I will, like I would go to the conferences, you know, I do like down like two or three a year. And every time I come home, I’m exhausted, so exhausted, I can barely see straight, I can barely walk. There have been times where I can barely walk from dancing, or just from having a venue so large that it’s like a mile from your room to the, you know, venue. And I felt like women, you know, I like when I go away from my kid, like, I want sleep. I want vacation. I mean I yes, I want to learn, but I also don’t want to feel dragged through the street. So. So problem number one, nothing starts before 10 am. And I do have Yes, or it’s at nine, everything else 10 am if you want to get up earlier, and do yoga or whatever, fine.
Nothing starting before 10 am because you deserve sleep and a chance to just be away. And then also like, it’s the aesthetic, like, the aesthetic is always like navy blue for some reason. And I’m just like nothing here is glittery, or shiny or rainbow or fun. Forget that, you know, so I’m having everything be like, in like beautiful bright colors, I want it to feel like I just want the ambiance to feel energizing. And I think if something is to corporate gray, and blue and even orange, I’m just like, I don’t know, I just feel like that’s I’m a visual person. So I feel like that’s important to me, it’s important that when I walk into a room, I feel like BAM you know, I want to feel excited to be there. And not just like, not just excited to learn what I’m learning or see the people but just to be in that space. I want people just excited to be in the ROOM.
Karen Swyszcz 38:33
(laughs) You say with such like, you know, like, purpose? Like be EXCITED. BAM. Like I think of like you remember Emeril?
Jessica Kupferman 38:41
Yes totally remember Emeril.
Karen Swyszcz 38:44
(laughs) You’re like Emeril for podcasting.
Jessica Kupferman 38:46
Sort of, yeah. Also, the content. First of all, I know that a lot. I know women that have applied every year to speak that have always been told no, I have no idea why. I know that I wanted a more diverse crowd. I want way more people of color and women of color. And I wanted to hear from people who were LGBT Q and you know, I don’t feel like there’s not a conscious ever effort to do that at larger or other podcasts conferences, because they’re very busy putting together a curriculum that’s well rounded. And I too want to do that.
It’s just that I know, out that there are enough diverse voices out there that can cover a well rounded curriculum and still be from somebody we’ve never heard from before. And that person can be successful in their own right.– Jessica Kupferman
So I have 107 speakers, 40% of them are women of color. I would love to have had more but you know, there I mean, there is this whole thing of they don’t apply. So like so I had women apply that I said no to but for the most part, you know, I really wanted a well rounded and diverse group of speakers, I wanted people to have monetized in ways you’ve never thought of before. I wanted people to teach Instagram who are have been influencers with 100,000 people or more. I wanted people like I have some speakers like one who’s a nun and doing she has a show called A Nun’s Life. And I have a woman who just came out after her husband died, and she has a show called Graying Rainbows.
And I have you know, I have women who want to talk about process and marketing and people who want to talk about creating products. But these women who create you know, who sell products from their podcast, millions of dollars doing it, like people who grew communities that are making like millions of dollars on whatever they’re selling their community, but they don’t necessarily get to speak every time because they may not exactly be podcasting gurus. I don’t think podcasting gurus know everything.
And so I think if you ask the same people to speak every time, you know what I don’t know, it’s just you sort of outgrow the show. So I want there to be different people every time. I want to hear from people we never get to hear from. I want them to feel energized, supported, enthusiastic. I want them to be inspired to talk to one another, to collaborate with one another.– Jessica Kupferman
And I also think, and this is not sexist, but just my experience, I find that when I’m in a conference with men, let’s just say I’m sitting in a session, and this has happened to me. I’m sitting in a session, I stand in line to talk to the person who just spoke when it’s over. And a man who is of course taller than me, because I’m 5″2 either pretends like he doesn’t see me or legit does not see me walks right in front of me and starts talking to the person that I’ve just been waiting to talk to, or has no problem interrupting and be like, do you have five minutes, I just want to ask you just one thing. Like, women don’t do that to one another. We’re respectful. We wait. We encourage no, you talk to him. You were here first. Like that doesn’t happen at women’s conferences, but it does happen in men’s conferences. I mean, not men’s, but when we’re mixed. I was just I just want a place where we don’t have to feel like we’re competing for anything at any reason anytime.
Karen Swyszcz 41:53
Yeah, it’s interesting that you had mentioned that because I actually experienced something similar to that at a more male-dominated conference, and I too, am 5″2. So I am short. And I guess you know, tall people tend to overlook short people sometimes. But I was waiting in line to talk to someone. It was a man and a man just like came up, you know, and was there beside me. And then the man acknowledge the guy and didn’t even acknowledge me say like, Oh, I’m sorry, I missed you. I’ll talk to you after or come look at our demo, like together include me, like I was just completely shut out.
Jessica Kupferman 42:31
Completely shut out. And I’ve worked in enough industries to know that like, if, like, I used to have to wear heels just so that I could talk to my boss in the eyes. Otherwise, he would just talk right to my colleague, like I didn’t even exist. I HATE that. So I don’t want an environment. I mean, there will be men there. Mostly, they’ll be vendors, but like, there are some men attendees there because they’re allowed. I’m not checking genitalia at the door, anything but like, you will know, in this environment to respect one another to treat everyone as an equal to listen without interrupting. I think that at regular conferences, and especially podcast conferences, people are also very chatty. They love the sound of their own voice. They want to tell their opinion. And when there’s lots of testosterone, I think the women who don’t, you know, have as much are trying to be polite. And I don’t want them to have to worry about that. I want them to see what they got to say and have no reason whatsoever to be quiet. That’s important to me.
Karen Swyszcz 43:32
Yeah. Can you provide more details about it? Like when and where is it being held and where they can get more info?
Jessica Kupferman 43:38
Yes. It’s in Atlanta, Georgia, October 11th 12th 13th. It’s at the Atlanta Marriott Marquis. The website is she podcastslive.com. And it is going to be super awesome. We have a kick-off party on Thursday night and then it’s going to be Friday, Saturday and Sunday. It’s a beautiful hotel, the Atlanta Marriott Marquis we already have like I said, we have the whole agenda up all the speakers are up so you can go see what everything is about. We also have some special opportunities there. I have a woman there who’s going to be doing headshots. For people who want to take headshots. Also, you can pitch to ad agencies. If you think you’re ready for sponsored, you can pitch to a PR x the radio topia network, if you think you want to be part of a network, you can get storytelling. There’s a Storytelling Workshop done by one of the instructors of the moss. So you get to learn how to tell a story by the experts of the experts. It’s going to be really cool. So we’re very excited about it. October 11th through 13th. Shepodcastslive.com.
Karen Swyszcz 44:38
It does sound very exciting. So before we sign off, do you have any advice or something you wish you had known when you had first started podcasting that you could share with the listeners?
Jessica Kupferman 44:49
Yes, I wish I had paid more attention to how my audio sounded. I was very laissez-faire about just getting my message out there and not caring and people are like, just do it. That’s true. But if you want to be taken seriously, you kind of have to sound good. And like I it took me a while before I took that seriously, and I wish I had done it sooner. So that’s one thing and then I think also just I don’t know.
My advice is usually don’t take everything so seriously. If you need to change, change. If you need to pivot, pivot, if it’s not working for you stop doing it. If you don’t want to air that episode, don’t air that episode. If you want things to be green instead of blue, just change it like it’s the podcast has to suit you first. Not your wallet, not your audience, not your you know, fame and glory. It has to suit you. Because once it matches up with everything you want, that’s when the formula for success kicks in.
Karen Swyszcz 45:40
Mm hmm. And on social media, where could people find you?
Jessica Kupferman 45:44
I am jesskupferman K-U-P-F-E-R-M-A-N on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter. And also you can find she podcasts at shepodcasts on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter.
Karen Swyszcz 45:56
Excellent. Well, this is really fun talking with you. And I learned so much much about like podcasting. And I feel like more inspired to keep going because actually, I wish I completely forgot to mention this. But I just wanted to also talk about like the editing and how I was finding that kind of like, Oh my gosh, is taking so much time or, you know, I feel like I’m behind. I can’t be consistent. But I mean, I guess if anything if I could give some advice like a new podcast or to people just to just keep going and putting yourself out there. Because I think there’s something to be said about the content creators versus the content consumers.
Jessica Kupferman 46:30
It’s worth it. Totally worth it. I agree.
Karen Swyszcz 46:34
Yeah. Awesome. So yeah, thanks again, everyone for listening in and stay tuned for more episodes.
Transcribed by https://otter.ai