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We sat down with famed lifestyle and business strategist Paul Colligan to learn more about how to run a successful podcast on The Art of Making Things Happen.

During our conversation, Paul mentioned THE FOUR M’s to create a successful podcast. Paul is an industry leader in launching successful podcasts and has worked with celebrities like Brendan Burchard, J.J. Virgin, Mike Koenigs, Donald Miller, and many more.

He is the author of over 12 books on the subject and an Amazon Best Selling Author of How to Podcast.

If you’ve recently launched your podcast, are thinking about launching a podcast, or are a seasoned podcasting pro, this information will be valuable to you. Let’s get started!

Why Your Podcast Sucks and How to Fix It!

Many people are starting to see the potential of podcasts to establish themselves and make money. While this is a good thing, there are some things noob podcasters and even seasoned pro’s get wrong. They miss the point of what makes a successful podcast.

Some might say downloads are a great barometer of success. Sure, it can be, but if you’re getting a ton of downloads, but no one is listening, how successful is it really?

Others may put a high priority on ad revenue. While this is nice, only a small percentage of podcasts make money solely on ad revenue alone.

These two common avenues for gaging success have the same fundamental flaws. They miss the mark on what makes a podcast sustainable and prosperous. Ask yourself, do you want a podcast that’s hot for a minute or one that lasts for years and produces a steady stream of income?

Building a successful podcast boils down to what Paul Colligan likes to refer to as The Four M’s.

The First M: Market

Some of you may be saying, duh, tell me something I don’t know, but you’d be surprised how many people launch podcasts without the foggiest clue of their defined target audience.

There’s no doubt about it before you launch your podcast, you need to know who your listener is, and why they want to listen to your podcast.

Paul explains it best like this, “If your market is everybody, then your market is nobody.” Like every successful business, you need to know your customer.

As a podcaster, the better you know your audience and how you can help them, the better off you are. Maybe your podcasting for stay-at-home mothers, but what about them? There are a million different niches you could delve into just for stay-at-home mothers.

The better you define your value to your target audience, the greater your chances of success.

The Second M: Message

It comes as no surprise that this dovetails with defining your audience. Great podcasters have a voice. When we say voice, we mean message.

What is your message?

Can you describe your podcast’s message in a sentence or two? If not, you don’t have a message. Here is an example of a podcast that has a message:

Our podcast helps stay-at-home mothers juggle the challenging position of being a mom and a mompreneur. Our weekly podcast gives tips on entrepreneurship, time management, productivity, and parenting advice.

Now that’s a podcast with a clear message!

The Third M: Money

Sharing your expertise is great, but you aren’t running a charity. Sooner or later, you want to have your podcast to add value to more than just your listeners. A podcast that doesn’t generate an income might as well be a hobby.

Since a tiny percentage of podcasts make money ad revenue alone and becoming famous is just as tricky, your best option is to speak to a small and rabid fanbase. How can you sell to your fanbase?

Using the example of the mompreneur podcast, you could sell coaching sessions, run workshops, sell content in the form of books, courses, or more.

A podcast that has a market, a message, and money is going places.

The Last M: Media

Is your podcast the best media for your business? Does it make sense? Is there a better media for your business that may produce greater profits elsewhere?

Answering this question is paramount. If you’re taking time making podcasts, but you could generate more business with blog posts or video messaging, you’re wasting time.

Looking to Raise Your Podcast Game

Sign up for Paul’s Heads Up Tuesday Newsletter. Just for signing up, you’ll receive a PDF of The Four M’s from Paul with loads of other great content.

Are you a business looking to start a podcast, Paul’s Podcast Partnership can help.

As always, if you’re looking for more great podcast interviews with some of the world’s most successful entrepreneurs, check out The Art of Making Things Happen Podcast with Steve D. Sims.

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