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Controlling The Momentum Of Your Podcast
Episode 8616th February 2022 • Podcast Pontifications • Evo Terra
00:00:00 00:09:26

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Evo Terra:

Having a set of processes and procedures to keep you and your podcast

Evo Terra:

moving is an obvious success factor.

Evo Terra:

But when those processes and procedures start to fail, can you adjust quickly?

Evo Terra:

Hello, and welcome to another Podcast Pontifications with me, Evo Terra.

Evo Terra:

Not every experiment works.

Evo Terra:

At least, not the way you wanted it to.

Evo Terra:

Successfully deployed tactics sometimes have a shelf life and

Evo Terra:

their effectiveness wanes over time.

Evo Terra:

Best practices are often eroded by the winds of change.

Evo Terra:

What you read in a book from last year was written the year before that,

Evo Terra:

making that advice out of date well before it was even seen by your eyes.

Evo Terra:

Now, I'm being a little disingenuous making these blanket statements

Evo Terra:

because there are plenty of time-tested methodologies and truisms you can almost

Evo Terra:

always count on, even in podcasting.

Evo Terra:

But at some point, you're going to find that something you thought was

Evo Terra:

a staple of your process is no longer delivering for you or for your show.

Evo Terra:

And if you're like most podcasters, me included, you'll keep doing that

Evo Terra:

thing, sure in your own conviction that it's the right thing to do and that

Evo Terra:

whatever deficiencies you're currently experiencing are just a momentary blip.

Evo Terra:

Soon enough, things will start to snap back to where they were before.

Evo Terra:

Maybe, but maybe not.

Evo Terra:

Look, it took me the better part of two years to recognize that my

Evo Terra:

approach to Medium wasn't working.

Evo Terra:

No, "wasn't working" isn't strong enough.

Evo Terra:

It took me the better part of two years to recognize that my

Evo Terra:

approach to Medium was stupid.

Evo Terra:

See, two years ago, I was seduced by Medium's Partner Plan, a plan that,

Evo Terra:

well, if not promised, then certainly intimated the possibility of fat

Evo Terra:

stacks of cash I'd get by metering the articles I posted on Medium.

Evo Terra:

Now, if you're unaware, I write an article for every single episode of Podcast

Evo Terra:

Pontifications, an article that covers the exact things I said in the podcast

Evo Terra:

episode, but expanded and reformatted for people to read instead of listened to.

Evo Terra:

I post that article on my website.

Evo Terra:

I mail that article to all of my subscribers to Podcast Pontifications In

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Your Inbox, which is a free service that I think you should totally sign up for.

Evo Terra:

Just hit that big subscribe button on the show's website.

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Or there's also a link in the episode details of your listening app.

Evo Terra:

And I also started posting that same article on Medium.

Evo Terra:

Medium was, and perhaps still is, a preferred reading destination/platform

Evo Terra:

for many people and lots of human curation takes place on the platform.

Evo Terra:

Now, I've been a user of the service for several years now, both as a regular

Evo Terra:

reader, as well as a content creator.

Evo Terra:

And I knew that the content that I was writing would likely resonate

Evo Terra:

with at least some of the audience.

Evo Terra:

So I thought I'd try my hand at making the Medium content I posted premium.

Evo Terra:

Well, that didn't work.

Evo Terra:

I barely made enough money from that program each month to cover the cost

Evo Terra:

of my own paying to be in the service.

Evo Terra:

It didn't start working well, and then stopped working, by the

Evo Terra:

way, never really worked for me.

Evo Terra:

But I was caught up in the idea that it might work.

Evo Terra:

And I was seeing my follower count on Medium rise rapidly through the program.

Evo Terra:

But during that time, my coffers remained, let's call it, unlined with little more

Evo Terra:

than a few dollars every month coming in.

Evo Terra:

But for two years, I kept putting things under Medium's paywall.

Evo Terra:

Until last weekend, when I finally suffered the multiple-hour pain of

Evo Terra:

unmetering a few hundred stories, one story at a time, because, of

Evo Terra:

course, there's no bulk editing tool to accomplish that task.

Evo Terra:

So why did it take me so long to figure out that wasn't working?

Evo Terra:

Momentum.

Evo Terra:

I'll tell you about that.

Evo Terra:

Momentum is typically something you want in a time intensive

Evo Terra:

creative pursuit like podcasting.

Evo Terra:

It's the lack of momentum, or at least the inability to quickly achieve momentum,

Evo Terra:

that makes so many novice podcasters burnout after just a handful of episodes.

Evo Terra:

And we need momentum in podcasting.

Evo Terra:

We need that force pushing us or carrying us along.

Evo Terra:

It may be hard for you to remember what it was like when you first started

Evo Terra:

podcasting, but I assure you, it was incredibly hard for you to keep going

Evo Terra:

after the initial excitement wore off.

Evo Terra:

And here's the dirty little secret, the more podcasts you start from

Evo Terra:

scratch during your career, the faster that initial excitement runs out.

Evo Terra:

So you're going to start looking for momentum in your procedures and

Evo Terra:

practices much quicker because that's the only way to keep you going.

Evo Terra:

But momentum on its own can push you in a direction that is off the beaten path.

Evo Terra:

Momentum doesn't recognize when the environment around it changes.

Evo Terra:

Momentum is resistant to evidence that a tactic may not be working any longer.

Evo Terra:

Momentum is what carries your car over the cliff when you fall asleep at the wheel.

Evo Terra:

But, momentum doesn't have total control over you as a podcaster.

Evo Terra:

You have agency.

Evo Terra:

So you can pump the brakes or crank the wheel or take some other action

Evo Terra:

when you find that momentum is working against you, or at least not

Evo Terra:

working out like you wanted it to.

Evo Terra:

The trick is having enough bandwidth and foresight to analyze the effectiveness of

Evo Terra:

the momentum you've developed, analysis that isn't too quick to jump at the

Evo Terra:

small fluctuations, but also doesn't take you two frigging years to figure

Evo Terra:

out when something just isn't working.

Evo Terra:

To do that, you have to know why you were doing as much as what you were doing.

Evo Terra:

You have to know the difference between foundational tactics [and

Evo Terra:

promotional tactics], processes that have results that are by their nature

Evo Terra:

difficult to quantify, which can quickly show diminishing results.

Evo Terra:

You know, it's very easy to conflate the two, promotional

Evo Terra:

tactics and foundational tactics.

Evo Terra:

It's very easy to conflate that even for seasoned pros like me.

Evo Terra:

But with that, I shall be back tomorrow with yet another Podcast Pontifications.

Evo Terra:

Cheers!

Evo Terra:

Podcast Pontifications is written and narrated by Evo Terra.

Evo Terra:

He's on a mission to make podcasting better.

Evo Terra:

Links to everything mentioned in today's episode are in the notes

Evo Terra:

section of your podcast listening app.

Evo Terra:

A written-to-be-read article based on today's episode is available at

Evo Terra:

podcastpontifications.com where you'll also find a video version and a corrected

Evo Terra:

transcript, both created by Allie Press.

Evo Terra:

Podcast Pontifications is a production of Simpler Media.