In 2008, WIRED editor Kevin Kelly wrote that creators only needed "1000 True Fans" (at $100 per fan, per year) to make a good living.
In my Big Podcast book, I talk about how you can actually make a great living as a podcaster with only 5-10 decision-makers on your side.
Way too many podcasters are focusing on a "big audience" to make things happen for themselves. And while it's nice to have millions of downloads, you need to know that there are other options for making money via your podcasting.
You don't need a big audience, you need the right audience.
This article has more info on how to attract the right audience. And check out the Big Podcast book for even more details on how to make money with a just a few listeners.
Part of the "I need a big audience" trap podcasters fall into is trying to please everybody.
Let me be clear – no matter what you say, you will make somebody mad. And some people will stop listening to you.
But there's good news... When you take a stand and actually share an opinion on something, even though you'll lose a few people (and maybe even a lot of people), there will be those who stick around and love you even more, because they agree with you.
As mentioned above, you don't need everybody to like (or listen to) your podcast for it to be successful. According to the article, you can be in good shape with only 100 true fans. And I make the argument that you only need 5-10 true fans.
So stop playing it safe and work on cultivating and building relationships with people who love you, not just tolerate you.
THE HARD TRUTH: Most people who find your podcast and give it a shot won't stick around long.
If you want people to keep listening, do the things mentioned in this article.
You need an "onboarding system" that tells new listeners about your podcast and what they can expect from you. People don't like surprises and what you're doing on your podcast may not be obvious on the first listen, so doing this will immediately increase that number of downloads you get from new listeners and keep them around longer.
You need a sense of community that will let listeners know they're in the right place and they belong. There are a number of ways to do this, one of which is bringing your listeners into your podcast creation process.
More in the article... This stuff is easy to implement and you will see immediate results as far as more downloads and a stronger community, so take a look and do it!
FACT: The more ways you're able to connect with podcast listeners, the more they'll feel connected to you.
Setting up an email listen is easy (and cheap) via software like SendFox (just $49 for life), but how do you grow your list? This article has 39 simple ways to do just that...