In one of the new and modern avenues to communicate, podcasting has definitely stayed strong and its outlook as a medium of choice remains strong. From business owners to corporates, from individuals to partners, there are billions of podcasts out there to suit different interests.
TMTLpodcast's journey from the thought of doing the podcast to completing one whole year of podcasting has been unique. In this episode, host Surbhi Dedhia summarizes thoughts, lessons learnt and experiences shared on various episodes throughout the past year.
Tune in to this episode to hear how she launched the podcast in 8 weeks straight and many other fun-learnings along the way!
[00:00:00] Hello. Hello and welcome to a brand new episode on the Making of a Thought Leader podcast. This episode is to celebrate a big milestone in my podcasting journey that is completing a whole year of podcasting. Yes. TMTl podcast is now one. Woohoo! Many podcasts do not last beyond 15 episodes. And I can understand that it can get really challenging and it is also a matter of commitment to last through the initial year.
[00:00:39] So come along with me on this journey, as I reflect what has brought me to this whole year of podcast. So come along with me on this journey, which I'm calling BTS, which is behind the scene to share with you. What has helped me achieve this milestone. Also in this episode, I'm reflecting on some of the cool ideas that the experts and guests on this show have shared.
[00:01:11] So are you ready? Let's go.
[00:01:28] This is may of 2021 and I'm in a business meeting discussing building thought leadership. I was suddenly asked this question, so why don't you start your own podcast? And that moment was one moment when I felt like a deal caught in the headlights. I never imagined myself to be a podcast host. And this question literally had me speechless. By then, I had helped couple of entrepreneurs start their own podcast as a part of building their thought leadership and brand. In the past, I've done several webinars for the different colleagues that I worked for, but I had never imagined applying the same principles to my, to build my own thought leadership.
[00:02:17] Now this happens to the best of us, isn't it? I guess my answer at that point in the business meeting was something to the tune of, mm. I will start a, a podcast probably at the end of this year. And the person of sitting opposite to me was asking me this question was none other than the Dhiren Bhatia whose podcast, the elevated entrepreneur show was already a year old by then.
[00:02:44] And going through the discussions, he went like, you know, the grind, you know, you can launch your podcast in eight weeks. And right then and there, he pulled up all the templates that we had developed for building his podcast and putting together the why and the who and the ward of the podcast. It, it, it just was eight weeks away.
[00:03:09] And then on first July or so, I had launched my podcast. After that meeting the goal was to launch the podcast in eight weeks. That was July 1st, 2021. So I started with the grind to build the content and putting together some of the goals. At that time, I had decided that I'll run the podcast probably up to 20 to 25 episodes, which will bring me to about a year of doing it and had a very modest target of around 500 downloads today, as we are celebrating the first year of the show, it is nowhere close to stopping. And besides the amazing number of downloads and listenership, it has received over the world. Thank you to the listeners of the show, as well as the questions that keep coming in for me to go and seek out relevant responses and relevant to relevant guest, to talk about those issues for you guys. So please keep them coming.
[00:04:14] Right. So I was on the journey to build a podcast and I had almost close to four weeks left when the deciding the name came about, what should I call my podcast? This part took the longest for me. I wanted a name that had the words thought leader in it. And at the same time, it had to convey the thought leader that thought leaders are made it to be, there has to be a system behind it to become a thought leader. It is not that overnight somebody can become a thought leader. Just because you have X number of followers on social media or, uh, by the virtue of what you do, or even by virtue of where you are, who you are, does not make you a thought leader, an influencer, yes. Or maybe an entertainer, but not a thought leader. So, from then, then on, once I chosen the name, I had like a countdown, which was T minus eight weeks and every week I had to set a goal for myself to achieve. So it went on and on from choosing a jingle to purchasing the equipment, trying out different locations to record, et cetera.
[00:05:30] Well, it was not very rosy, but definitely it was quite, quite interesting to go through those eight weeks. And having an accountability partner, like definitely helped me a lot. I was lucky to, as I had already developed necessary templates and have had some experience running all these things for other people.
[00:05:52] So even if there were a lot of moving parts, it was not as daunting as it may seem to a complete new bee. And yet none of it was a short of a rollercoaster. So recording the first three episodes was very memorable. I I'm sure it is for every podcaster probably. And believe me, even if I thought that I knew what I was getting into, it took me umpteen number of tries and retakes to get even the first episode out.
[00:06:25] And I thought hey I'm otherwise a very chatty and talkative person. This should not be so difficult for me, but it felt so unnatural to speak into the microphone with no one listening or responding to me. The next part came where the episodes needed to be polished and mixed with the music. And it had to lay exactly as the sequence and the filler words had to be removed.
[00:06:51] And the whole editing process. Now I have dabbled into audio editing again, but it was not to this level of really being so technical. And then it really felt like I was an audio engineer of sorts. Once the three episodes were really done, I was excited and nervous. Once the launch day came close by to launch the podcast, I went live on Instagram to share, why am I doing this?
[00:07:20] And who is it for? Et cetera. Well, besides there were other marketing, uh, elements to it, which means I put it out on my LinkedIn and other social network, but the launch event was on Instagram. it was a nerve wrecking experience. It is not that I have not been on a live before, like live YouTube or a live LinkedIn before, but it was me hosting.
[00:07:48] A live session was completely a nervewracking one. I have always been this person in the background. You see, I have always held the analyst and the entrepreneurs. Clients being on the spotlight. So I have done the backend work, but never been on the front or never been in the spotlight myself and to walk the talk, it took another level of effort of from me.
[00:08:11] And once I was live, I think I really enjoyed the discussions and questions that came through. Also not everything goes as planned. Isn't it? So I've learned this repeatedly from my experience and my career in events, marketing campaigns. And, and this is where I felt like, yeah, that always have a plan B.
[00:08:32] So for my Insta live session too uh, Dhiren my podcast mentor was kind enough to come online as a co-host and said that I will interview you so it can get easier for you to just share about your podcast. I thought, well, that was really a good, uh, generous offer. And I took it.
[00:08:50] And instant live in UAE apparently doesn't allow two co-hosts or two hosts for that live. So it had to be only one live host. And since it was me who was launching the podcast, I had to go ahead without Dhiren at the very last minute. And that was a very small. Small thing, a small detail that we had missed to review to verify before going live.
[00:09:16] But Hey, that there I was on Instagram live, the audience were waiting, uh, trickling in very quickly at the time of the show. And it was me. It was maneuvering the hosting. of insta live myself. It turned out to be great on the hindsight, but during the insta live, I was like, did why didn't I think, think this up before, right?
[00:09:40] Like why didn't I walk it through before, but plan B really helped that Dhiren was still online and then he was still asking me questions and, uh, we, we did the Insta live seamlessly. Sort of, and then came the whole other part of, okay. The first three episodes are out now. What next? Where is episode 4, 5, 6 onwards.
[00:10:04] The next few episodes also happened very seamlessly for me, thankfully, because I had put together a whole content strategy for the podcast and it worked out beautifully, uh, to, to think through all the first 10 episodes and plan out the content. What also ensued as a part of the launch of the podcast was just the sheer number of connections that happened to that happened to start everywhere just by the virtue of podcasting.
[00:10:35] Uh, I started talking to more podcast, other podcasters potential guests who could be on the show, the listeners themselves started talking, leaving feedback, and it was definitely very time consuming and yet very engaging. although on, on, on the, on the look of it or on, on the front of it, every episodes feel like, okay, this, this must have gone very smoothly.
[00:11:00] I'm sure there are a lot of podcasters listening to the show probably saying no, nothing goes smoothly. And exactly what ha that's what has happened here as well. There were ton of issues and the learning that came along with it is phenomen. like issues such as internet gets wonky some days, uh, the equipment doesn't seem to connect very well.
[00:11:24] Uh, the guests on the show are probably more nervous than you are and the surrounding noises. It's just by the fact of where you are, right? Like the bells are ringing or the pets are meowing or bucking in the back end. And there was this one very interesting episode where. I just couldn't figure out what is that noise in the background?
[00:11:48] I felt like an audio engineer that day, because I was like separating tracks after tracks to edit the podcast. And I just couldn't place witches that sound. And apparently it was the little clock tick in the room far behind, but it was still loud enough for the microphone to catch. Yeah, that happens.
[00:12:09] Right. And that, that was like a, like a discovery in itself throughout my podcasting journey. I appreciate a few things I'm really, really grateful for the first. And the foremost is how welcomed. I felt as a podcaster, as a newbie podcaster, to be a part of different podcasting communities was invited as an, uh, as a speaker for a podcast podcast.
[00:12:34] Podcast it is called and also as a woman podcaster in business and as a part of this huge women community on, uh, who are podcasters. So that really is amazing. The second area that I feel very grateful about is the amount of tools available at and are disposable to, uh, do a, to bring out a very good quality podcast.
[00:13:01] So be Buszzsprout, which hosts your podcast and also sends it to different, podcast players. So that's amazing Descript tool that I can't thank enough for being around at this time and age, because it simplifies editing and transcribing so seamlessly. And of course, audacity, which allows amazing, uh, audio editing.
[00:13:27] The third. And the thing that I'm really, really very grateful for is just the learning, the amount of learning that goes on episode after episode from the guest, from the listeners, it, it is just that whole compounding effect of knowledge that you ha harness and that you gather over a period of time. So I'm really grateful for that.
[00:13:51] Now, talking about the learning part, I must mention. Uh, every guest has added so much to the overall offering of the podcast. So some shared, phenomenal, um, experiences that they have as an entrepreneur or someone who are trail blazing their parts with amazing achievements experts who know how to work, the systems like LinkedIn and Instagrams.
[00:14:16] And there. There have been authors on the show who pour their knowledge into a book to leave Le legacy behind and coaches who have trained umpteen number of people to leverage their gifts, to build on their thought leadership. So looking back, it may just feel like a double digit number 29 episodes.
[00:14:35] Some podcasts at this time probably are running 500 and something. Yet, I feel these 29 episodes have given me that initial lift off needed to hone different skills from listening to the audience's feedback, from listening to the guest speaker, what they are saying, and also the conver conversations that happen on the spot.
[00:14:59] So as I reflect on the topics we have covered so far, I see so much of wealth in the content. There, there have been trailblazers who shared key habits. They have adopted to build their point of view and how honing them consistently has. Help them go further. So check out episodes four, five, and six, for some honest and proven ideas.
[00:15:23] I'm sure you'll love them. Storytellers who have seen the age old human skills to pass information as a currency to keep the business running, check out episodes 12, 14, and 20. Coaches who shared how using your gifts can be a game changer in building thought leadership, check out episodes eight and 28 subject matter experts who have honed their skills in a particular niche and have helped others go a great way.
[00:15:56] Great way with their skills. Check out episodes, 10, 14, 19 20, 23 and 26. Now these episodes are really for those specific skills. Like for example, say. If you want to know how to build thought leadership on Instagram, for example, or on LinkedIn, or use video, uh, as, as a tool to develop your thought leadership.
[00:16:23] And these are some amazing episodes where they have given tips, tricks, resources people can use, and of course they can get in touch with those individuals to even get them further, uh, understanding about the tools. lastly, there were some solo episodes, which I've addressed topics based on the questions that I've got from the followers and the listeners of the show. And that is definitely not it. There is just so much more to talk about in this world of thought leadership building thought leadership and get inputs on where from various thought leaders subject matter experts to help you, the listeners become thought leaders from most of the conversations that I've had.
[00:17:06] I find that the guests are touching upon these common traits of a thought of building thought thought leadership. So the first one I always find is people talk about clarity. So clarity is something that guests talk about in terms of, in the context of. What people knowing what they are absolutely after.
[00:17:31] Right? Like, so building thought leadership is, can get a very broad and a fuzzy term. But if you know that, okay at the end of the day, I want to be this door opener for my company to get my sales people get the right contacts in different organization. And that's the reason I wanna become a thought leader.
[00:17:50] You have a clarity of why you are investing time, energy, and resource in creating content, creating the community around your point of view. Similarly, the other area is also clarity about who they serve. So again, as I said, in the example earlier, that if you want to be this person who opens the door for salespeople to have conversations with the right person in organization, then you have, you know, exactly who do you serve the audience?
[00:18:24] I can't repeat this enough. If you don't know who you are serving, you're practically keeping the money on the table, not doing marketing in the right. second is most of these thought leadership thought or most of these people who are behind building thought leader leadership are following some kind of a process or a system that works for them.
[00:18:48] And that actually brings to the third point of building consistency, because there is a process. Or a system that they follow, they are innately building consistency in their system. And that also means that they understand that building thought leadership is a long game. The next trait I identify with a lot of guests talking about is communication.
[00:19:15] Now communication again, as a generic term is like the ability to talk to other person, but what these people subject matter experts. Or people who are developing their thought leadership are doing is building communications, consistent communication with their target audience. And they're talking about issues that face their industry.
[00:19:40] Now the next trait that builds from that communication is the sense of community, the sense of follower, the sense of having your own tribe in that industry. Who is benefiting from your point of view. And that's another trait that a thought leader has from what I've understood from talking to these guests who come on the show, the, the sixth one or the other other trait that people talk about is giving value.
[00:20:10] It's not about just community communicating in an echo chamber where people, other people are saying the same thing and you are doing the same again. To reiterate the point. But here, what we're talking about is providing value. The people, the followers, your tribe are looking to gain value from what you are communicating with them.
[00:20:32] And last, and the final point I feel is I hear everybody say is listening. Are you listening to what your target audience is? Feedbacking to you? Are you asking the right questions to able, to, to be able to hear. your audience is talking to you. All right, so these conversations actually came so close to the 8-P framework that I have shared in episode two of The Making of a Thought Leader podcast.
[00:21:04] Now that was something which is so heartening to know that I work with my clients on, on developing their thought leadership is actually resonating well with all these other subject matter experts. Who've come on the show. I have shared this in episode two, as I said, the 8-P framework. Once again, just to reiterate and to have a context to our conversation today is the 8P framework starts with purpose.
[00:21:32] Clarity. Yeah. We spoke about this. What is the goal? Why you want to develop. Thought leadership, why you want to put your point of view up front in, out there in the marketplace, right? Um, who is it that you're doing for? So P for purpose, the first P the second P is people. If you know the target audience very well, that that helps you tremendously cut the whole noise and just be very clear on what exact message you want to deliver.
[00:22:00] the third is packaging. How are you going to put it together so that it is consumable? It is valuable. It makes an effect, uh, to, to your followers, to the audience. The fourth P is positioning. Positioning doesn't mean that you position yourself as a thought leader upfront, but it means that. Position yourself consistently in a different, uh, channels where your audience is following you or your audience is the fifth P is publishing. Publishing, technically is whatever you're thinking, the communication that you're putting together. You need to put it out there in different formats for your audience to consume. The six P is partnering today. The world is full of full of people who are talking about different things, and there's just so much collaboration happening.
[00:23:01] I see a lot of value in collaboration and this piece is very important. If you partner other, they are aligned with what you are talking about. Um, and it brings a, win, win situation for both you and your partner. The seventh P is promotion. So whatever you say you are doing repeatedly, only 30% of the audience is going to see it at one go in the digital world.
[00:23:28] So you got to repeat it. You got to promote it in different ways and format. and the last one is the proof. If the people are saying, responding, engaging with your content, that's a proof enough to share, show you that what you are doing is, is, is something that is being valued.
[00:23:47] And you got to gather that proof to keep going on. It's something close to, very close to listening. As what I've learned from the guests talking, talking about on the. okay. So going back to this journey of one year of podcasting, I felt that the 8P framework resonates so closely to what the guests have been talking about.
[00:24:10] And in the next few episodes, one of the aims that I have is to bring on more thought leaders on board, more subject matter expertise who can share exact skills and tips, which can be helpful to, to you to become a thought leader. Now what I request from you as every time I do, please share your feedback.
[00:24:33] Please ask me questions so I can go out there and get more relevant people. Address more relevant topics that are valuable to you. Okay. And so with this, we've come to this amazing celebration of one year of the making of a thought leader podcast. Thank you for being a part of this journey and stay tuned because there's a lot more coming up on the show. Until we meet next time in episode 31, this is Surbhi Dedhia. Thank you so much for being a part of the show and listening to it until the end.