Building Your Business Podcast Infrastructure Like A Pro With Alicia Butler Pierre

TBF 50 | Business Podcast Infrastructure

 

Business infrastructure is a niche that doesn’t get talked about enough. However, Alicia Butler Pierre makes it fun and entertaining. Alicia is the Founder and CEO of Equilibria, Inc., a 15-year-old operations management firm specializing in increasing bandwidth for fast-growing small businesses. This is done via business infrastructure, and Alicia is recognized as one of the few people in the world specializing in it. She also hosts the weekly Business Infrastructure: Curing Back Office Blues podcast, which currently reaches listeners in 35 countries. On today’s show, she joins Tracy Hazzard to dive into the amazing world of business infrastructure – from building a podcast and booking great guests to increasing engagement and growing your audience.

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Building Your Business Podcast Infrastructure Like A Pro With Alicia Butler Pierre

The podcaster I bring on sounds like it could be a boring show, but it is not. When I say business infrastructure, how often do entrepreneurs and people cringe? There are others of us who go, “That’s cool. Finally, somebody is talking about something necessary.” I’ve got the host of Business Infrastructure – Curing Back Office Blues. Can it be blue if it’s not your core competence? Alicia Butler Pierre is the Founder and CEO of Equilibria. It’s an operations management firm specialize in increasing bandwidth for fast-growing small businesses. This is done by a business infrastructure. Alicia is recognized as one of the few people in the world specializing in it. She even leveraged her background in chemical engineering to develop the Kasennu framework for Business Infrastructure and invent software by the same name. Alicia hosts the weekly Business Infrastructure – Curing Back Office Blues podcast, which reaches listeners in 35 countries. She’s also the author of the two-times Amazon bestseller, Behind the Facade: How to Structure Company Operations for Sustainable Success. It is the world’s first published book to focus exclusively on business infrastructure for small businesses. Combined with her online content, it has generated over 750,000 views. She’s committed to doing the right things the right way.

Her mantra is to leave it better than you found it. I’m glad I could bring her on. I’m glad she came across my desk. Every so often, there’s a podcast that’s pitched to me by a PR firm and I was pitched a different show. I pushed back and said, “That’s not what I’m looking for. I’m looking for this.” I redefined with this PR firm, what I was looking for and they sent me Alicia. I cannot thank them enough because we had a great time on the show. You’re going to love the episode. She’s dynamic, interesting and in an amazing niche that doesn’t get talked about enough. She makes it fun and entertaining. I know you’re going to enjoy this episode with Alicia Butler Pierre.

About Alicia Butler Pierre

TBF 50 | Business Podcast InfrastructureAlicia Butler Pierre is the founder and CEO of Equilibria, Inc., a 15-year-old operations management firm specializing in increasing bandwidth for fast-growing small businesses. This is done via business infrastructure and Alicia is recognized as one of the few people in the world specializing in it. She even leveraged her background in chemical engineering to develop the KasennuTM framework for business infrastructure and invent software by the same name.

Alicia hosts the weekly Business Infrastructure: Curing Back Office Blues podcast which currently reaches listeners in 35 countries. She’s also the author of the 2x Amazon bestseller, Behind the Façade: How to Structure Company Operations for Sustainable Success. It is the world’s first published book to focus exclusively on business infrastructure for small businesses. Combined, her online content has generated over three-quarters of a million views. Committed to doing the right things the right way, Alicia’s mantra is “to leave it better than you found it.”

Social Media Links: Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn & YouTube

LI: https://www.linkedin.com/in/aliciabutlerpierre/

TW: https://twitter.com/alicia_b_pierre

YT: https://www.youtube.com/user/EquilibriaInc

FB: https://www.facebook.com/AliciaButlerPierre

IG: https://www.instagram.com/Alicia_B_Pierre/

Website: https://aliciabutlerpierre.com/

Alicia, thank you for joining me. Does that sound funny that people were like, “Let’s talk about business infrastructure?” I know that sounds crazy but I love your topic, which is a strange thing for a lot of podcasters because a lot of us are visionaries and people-people but to like the technical.

As podcasters, we can all appreciate that there’s a lot of work that goes on behind the scenes. Even though it’s audio, there’s still work that goes on behind the audio.

There are systems and processes. I have a whole company because I was good at that part of that stuff.

The thing is we don’t always think of it as “systems or processes,” but that’s exactly what it is.

I think there are podcasts for every type of person. You talk sometimes on the show about the mindset and the types of people that are operations managers, COOs, and in those positions that are dealing with infrastructure. I think about that and I was like, “Why wouldn’t they listen to a podcast?” It’s not just like, “Let’s have fun,” and everything is exciting and visionary in a podcast. Sometimes, we need to get some things done. We need to learn some things.

That’s what I appreciate most about the latest season of my podcast is because the focus was on COO’s. It shed light on while the CEOs and the founders of companies have the vision and the big picture thinking going on, but then there’s someone who has to follow up behind us and make sure that that stuff gets done. That’s the number two person. You’re second in command.

TBF 50 | Business Podcast Infrastructure
Business Podcast Infrastructure: Focus on using your podcast as a business development tool.

 

I joke about that because there’s Star Trek. I always wanted to be the number one, which in reality is your COO and you are number two. That’s what I always want. I was like, “That’s my dream in a company. I can be the number one and COO as number two.” Why did you start a podcast? Did you believe that you had a great audience? What triggered that for you?

Honestly, Tracy, it isn’t a glamorous story at all. I didn’t know the first thing about podcasting. It was suggested to me by a digital marketing coach that I was working with at the time. I was working on a book for most of 2018 and write it around June of 2018. I was frustrated because I spent so much time working on my book and I didn’t have time for business. I was starting to get scared and nervous because there wasn’t any money coming in.

I call that the marketing rollercoaster. You get in the business, you get busy and you forget about that.

I had no appreciation for how focused I needed to be to complete a book, especially when you’re self-publishing. He said, “Maybe you could do a podcast.” I was like, “What are you talking about a podcast?” I knew what a podcast was, but I didn’t know the first thing about doing it. He said, “I’ll help you get started.” He would record me on the phone. If you listen to those first few episodes, the sound quality is not there at all.

I always do that. Whenever I evaluate a show, I always go to the first episode. I know it’s rough. It’s expected, but this is what I love to see. This is my criteria as a listener, not as an evaluator of them. I don’t think it’s a bad thing to have a distinct difference between your improvement to your most current episodes. It shows growth and that you care. To me, that’s the sign of a good show. I get it that it’s hard to start. I think most listeners do too because some of them have been listeners for decades and they were rough back then. They’re forgiving, but if there’s not growth and improvement in the sound quality and the way they show up, they don’t care enough about the show or the listeners. I think that’s a good thing that you have that contrast.

That’s how I got started. To be honest with you. I didn’t think about what I wanted the show to be until I applied for Google PRX. They classify everyone from all over the world for 6 to 12 people. It’s a small number of people that they select for the program. I was grateful for that application process because based on the questions that they asked in that form, it made me think, “What is this show? How is it going to be structured? Will it have seasons?” That’s when the whole idea of, “I’m going to structure my show into seasons.” I would have never thought to do something like that had it not been for that application process. I have to credit first that digital coach for even suggesting the idea of doing a podcast. Secondly, going through that application process to participate in that program for podcasters with helping me tighten up what I wanted the show to be and look like.

You’re so on there because I think that if you have a better strategy at the beginning, it comes across in the show and the listener pace grows. What I see clearly is that when someone has a clear idea in mind, even if it takes them a little while to get into that, but they start to say, “This is what’s working. I’m going to be clear about this. We’re going to make this work out this way. There are features and seasons.” Those work out at the end at a better rate. We find that’s a success tip that Alicia is giving us that focusing on that, “How do I want this to come across? Is this right for what I’m wanting to accomplish?” You’re a big operations person. You got a lot of the systems and mindset thinking. I always ask people about the return on investment and I mean that in the broader sense like, “Do you watch key performance indicators? Do you have some of those that you developed?” Because most people don’t have any sense that they should be doing those things. You come from a background where those things are essential. What are you watching about the show growth that is important to you?

That has changed over time. At first, I thought it was all about reviews because if you have X amount of reviews or downloads, that’s what’s going to attract the sponsors and the advertisers. Right after about a year into podcasting was when it was like I had the light bulb went off in my head and I was like, “You should be focusing on using this as a business development tool.” The key metrics that I look at for every guest that comes on, “What type of business opportunity have I been able to leverage as a result of building a relationship with that particular guest?” I’m not necessarily trying to convert every guest into a client, but I have a guest where he’s the gift that keeps on giving. He has introduced me to so many other people that have introduced me to other people that have opened doors for speaking engagements, client relationships, and number different things. That’s when I started to get more focused on building this relationship. This isn’t just because we’re having this interview, that doesn’t mean that our relationship has to stop at that point.

TBF 50 | Business Podcast Infrastructure
Business Podcast Infrastructure: When you’re starting a podcast, you’re not going to know who your listeners are in the beginning, and that can be very unsettling.

 

We were talking about before we even established our rapport. I was like, “I’ve got a couple of show we need to be on.”

I can tell you, I’m not going to let you go now that we’ve met.

It is because that relationship builds. I agree with you. That is my most important performance indicator. It’s the part that I love the most because I am a natural networker. I love that relationship building. I also don’t have enough time on an ordinary day. This is not an ordinary day for anyone, but I don’t have the ability to build a deeper rapport and relationship. This is a great way for me to get to know you deeper, check out your book, check out your podcast, and get to know more people at a deeper level than I would if I shook hands at an event or those whatever we’re supposed to do.

You took the words right out of my mouth. I made a conscious decision at the beginning of 2019 to get out of my backyard. I’m in Atlanta and I said, “I’ve got to get out,” because even going to networking events, you start running into the same people eventually or that whole six degrees of separation thing. I started leveraging LinkedIn more as a way of being able to meet people like you and people around the world, but even with LinkedIn, you can only take that so far. The podcast allows me to not only find a person like Tracy Hazzard but we can invite each other onto our respective shows and take that relationship to a place that it probably wouldn’t go if we were to try to have a bunch of direct messages through each other on LinkedIn.

My latest LinkedIn hate is, “Shall we have virtual coffee?” I was like, “I do not want to have virtual coffee with anyone. I’m sorry. I’m sure you’re amazing, but no.” When I asked you on my show, you’re getting the gift of publicity and at the same time, I’m getting the gift of getting to know you. We have that working for both of us and so that’s where it gets exciting. I’m glad you found that as being important to you. It is a shift. I do not watch my place and it’s my job. I had a stat side to my business so I should watch it, but I don’t because I know it’s working for what I wanted. You had to figure this whole thing out and you’re a systems and operations person. This is a question I never ask anyone because I’m sure that from experience, they didn’t put anything in place. Did you put a system in place for yourself? How did you organize yourself to be able to podcast and fit that into your work schedule and not have it overwhelm you?

It has been a process of continuous improvement. My show is structured into seasons. Each season has thirteen episodes. The first twelve I interviewed someone and then the thirteenth episode is a monologue where I’m tying up everything that has been covered and discussed in the first twelve episodes of that particular season. Those that I described to you were a work in progress. I didn’t start off thinking, “I will intentionally do a monologue in my thirteenth episode. Each season, we’ll have X number of episodes.” There was nothing. I started from scratch, but here’s what I do. I learned early on the importance of recording in batches. I have a weekly show. I know that it usually takes 90 days or three months to get through an entire season for my show. I know exactly when I need to start soliciting guests. Thankfully, I’m at a point where I can get those twelve slots filled quickly and I try my best to get all of those interviews done within a two-week period.

You'll know you're on your way if people that you don't know start coming up or reaching out to you. Click To Tweet

COVID-19 changed all of that because I had many interviews lined up. I specifically wanted to interview chief operating officers or the directors of operations because of the nature of the work that those people do. They’re on the front lines in their respective companies. One guy’s episode is coming up and he is the COO for the Atlanta Police Foundation. I had everything booked. We were ready to go. We were even going to follow up with lunch. He didn’t cancel. He said, “We’re going to have to postpone.” I reached out to him twelve different times before I could get it rebooked. I had big guests lined up to celebrate my 100th episode and he couldn’t do it because of COVID-19.

My point is under “normal circumstances,” I would have had most of those interviews booked and completed. I use two times each day, 4:00 PM and 6:00 PM because people like us, we’re busy during the heart of the day. We can settle down a little bit more toward the latter part of the afternoon, early evening. That’s when I like to do my interviews. Sometimes, when you’re talking to people in different time zones, especially if they’re in Australia or Asia, then that can be more challenging, but I do leave that flexibility for those types of guests and tell them, “Here’s a booking schedule. If you don’t see a time that works for you, please let me know. Let’s we can work something out.”

I do the same thing. I keep my calendar schedule pretty tight, but I don’t allow more than two bookings a day because I feel like that strains me in terms of the attention that I want to give the interviews. I do give them flexibility. I did a whole series with Hewlett Packard and because we had people all over the world, I was constantly like, “We’re home anyway, does it matter if it’s 8:00 at night instead of 4:00 in the afternoon? I’ll accommodate your schedule.” I even did a Saturday morning, which I almost never do, but they were in Singapore and it was an operations person and they were busy all week. The only day I could get them was there Saturday so I was like, “I’ll take it.” Have there been any challenges with doing the seasons from what you found in terms of how you organize it, how you operate it? How do you get listeners? Do they show back up when the next season comes?

That’s a good question because I’ll never forget some advice that I received early on from a successful podcaster. He said, “You’re not going to know who your listeners are in the beginning.” That can be unsettling because it’s like you’re out there talking and you have no idea whether or not anybody is listening. He also told me, “You’ll know you’re on your way if people that you don’t know start coming up to you or start reaching out to you saying, ‘I listened to your podcast and I like it.’” I can thankfully say that that happens for me that people that I don’t know reach out to me. It’s crazy because I may specifically say, “Go to BusinessInfrastructure.tv and leave a comment or say this and interact.” People are going to find you wherever they “play.”

They’re going to find you where it’s convenient for them.

I can’t blame them. It could be Instagram, Facebook or LinkedIn. It could be an email that someone sends, but what’s funny to me is someone may reach out to me completely out of the blue and say amazing things. I’ll then ask, “That’s great. Thank you so much for reaching out to me. Would you mind copying and pasting what you wrote and posting that as a review on the website?” but it never happened.

TBF 50 | Business Podcast Infrastructure
Business Podcast Infrastructure: There’s a lot that goes on behind the scenes, especially if you want to project a professional image.

 

You mentioned reviews at the beginning and I coach a lot of people to say, “I wish reviews mattered. I wish people cared enough,” but it’s not them. It’s harder than you think to leave a review. It’s not a simple thing. The apps don’t make it easy and it’s not on every app. If I use a certain app, there’s no review function. I’m not an iTunes listener. It’s not as clear cut to them. They’d love to reward you, but if it was simple, “Did you like this? Click five stars,” after they listened to an episode, it would be so much easier, but no one does that. I’m glad you’re not getting caught up in that. Before we get to the binge-listenable aspects of your show and get into a little bit more detail there, you were talking about the great guests. You have some great guests on your show that are high powered. They are working for great companies. The last one I listened to was he worked with GE. You have a lot of amazing connections there. What are some of the best ways you’ve found to book those great guests, to get those ones that become great relationships for you?

There are a number of ways that I get guests like that one. A lot of them are in my network already, thankfully. The guests that you mentioned, his name is Jon Reid. We have worked together on some projects in the past. Another way is different PR firms. I have developed relationships with them through Twitter, believe it or not. Twitter has been an excellent resource to connect with journalists and people in the PR, publicity space, marketing, and sales. Twitter has been an excellent tool for that. Thirdly, other people that I am close to and that I work with, they will tell me about people in their networks.

They know you’re interested in it so they share it. That’s wonderful.

Thankfully, I’m at a point where I don’t work hard to get guests paid.

It does happen for those who are starting out there.

I can attest to that. Tracy, I was reading one of your interviews and you mentioned something about the 100th episode. I was like, “I’ve heard that a number of times.”

It’s like a magic number for some reason.

It’s almost like that’s your number to be able to lay your stake in the ground and say, “I’ve paid my dues. This is real. I’m not going anywhere.” I’ve found that the closer I’ve gotten to that number, the easier it has been. It’s almost like you become more of a magnet.

You’re attracting and I love that. You say that you don’t totally pay attention to your listeners, but there’s got to be some promotional things and things that you do to help them increase your listenership. What do you do?

I do a number of things. I create audiograms through the Headliner and we push and promote heavily on social media. LinkedIn, Twitter, Instagram, Facebook, those guest interviews will also appear in blog posts. We’re starting to put some of those episodes onto YouTube. I find any way that I can to leverage and promote those interviews. Here’s another cool thing, because it’s a business podcast when I am talking to prospective clients and as I’m listening to things that they’re telling me, I can go back and say, “Before we take any further step, I recommend that you go and listen to this interview with Tracy Hazzard, or go and listen to this particular interview,” and they love it.

A lot of my doctors and other things do that with their patients and that does help solidify business. You’ve been saying, we, like you have a team and I’m assuming you do, and you have a system because that wouldn’t be you, otherwise. How do you produce professionally? I’m asking that question, not from like, “What microphone do you use in the sound?” What do you do to keep that professional organization for yourself behind the scenes and make sure that you get all these pieces and parts like the audiograms and the social media? How do you do that?”

I’m a firm believer that you should do all of this yourself before you ever outsource it to anyone. That way you will know exactly what should be done and shouldn’t be done. You will know all the nuances. You’ll understand and appreciate the value of being able to outsource.

The value will be apparent to you.

As we were saying in the beginning, it’s a lot of work. There’s a lot that goes on behind the scenes, especially if you want to project a professional image. In the beginning, I was doing everything. As I slowly started getting better at it, I outsourced. I started outsourcing the promotion piece so the social media marketing piece.

That’s an interesting choice. Many people will outsource the production piece, like all the sound or whatever, but the promotion is critical. Good for you.

I find that that’s the piece that’s ongoing. That post-production phase is never-ending. It has to keep going because you have to keep staying out there in front of people. That was my first choice for outsourcing. Eventually, I found an editor through Fiverr. My podcast promoter is in New York. My editor is in Nigeria. I hired another virtual assistant. She’s here in Atlanta, but we’ve never met in person. She’s helping me with the CRM piece, Tracy. I was going and going, and when I realized that I was fastly approaching my 100th episode, I was like, “How many people have I interviewed?” It’s 85. I said, “No wonder it’s becoming more difficult for me to rattle off names.”

TBF 50 | Business Podcast Infrastructure
Business Podcast Infrastructure: Having language in the context of your post that accompanies the audiogram is significant in being able to draw people in.

 

It is for me too. I can’t even think of the names anymore.

Here’s what’s great about my podcast. I’m a stickler for asking people to share their resources. “When you come on my show, please share at least three things that you’ve read, you’ve watched, and that you’ve participated in, that you think would be beneficial to others.” One thing I’ve learned from interviewing those 85 people across the board, they talked about the importance of having a CRM or Customer Relationship Management tool. I’m learning too, as I interview people. I hired this virtual assistant and she’s taking all of that podcast guests’ data and she’s putting it into a CRM. I can be even better at connecting other guests to each other, recommending guests to prospective clients that I have. It is another way of being able to maintain those relationships and nurture those relations.

I’m glad to know you say that and recommend that as our professional way to produce your show. At the end of the day, if that’s your key performance indicator is that I’m getting relationships built-in, it’s translating into business and network growth. That’s valuable to me, that should be one of the first things you deal with, but we don’t always. We were like, “We have this value.” You’ve been doing a lot of promotion and it was the first thing that you outsourced. How do you encourage engagement?

As with everything else as you know, it’s always an experiment. When I first started promoting, it was a still image. I would have a cover art image that might include the headshot of that particular guest. Sometimes it would be crickets, but you have to keep doing it. Once I found out about the Headliner app where I could create audiograms and these short video snippets that would contain a clip from the interview, those are a lot more engaging, but I needed to add the actual close captioning.

I would like to mention that to the audience that what we find is that at least there are estimates somewhere between 40% and 60% of videos are watched with the sound off. The audiogram is a video technically, but if you don’t click the sound on and you don’t have the captions, it doesn’t stop the person’s eye because they’re not hearing it. You got to have both going on there.

I had to learn that too, Tracy. Over time, that has been significant in increasing engagement, but also having language in the context of your post that accompanies that audiogram is significant in being able to draw people in.

Are you picking the clips yourself too?

I pick the clips myself, but Headliner does have an automated feature where they will do that for you. Sometimes, there’s something specific that I want to draw out from that episode.

That’s something that we found here is that those that pick it themselves because they intimately understand their topic and their audience better, they do a better job of getting engagement on those audiograms. It does take time to pick it yourself and a lot of times, as I’m doing the episode, I picked my pen up because I’m writing down a note of the time. I was like, “At 35 minutes, we start talking about this. That’s going to make a great audiogram. Let’s do an audiogram about audiogram.” That’s what I was thinking in my head. That’s a quick way for yourself so you don’t have to do it later.

For everybody, that’s something else that I had to learn. You see how we’ve talked through the progressive stages of it. You’ll realize, “I can do an audiogram.” First, it was the image, then audiogram, then audiogram with captions then, “As I’m conducting this interview, let me write down.” You keep getting better. The point I tell everybody is to get started. You will not know everything there is to know when you first start.

The last thing I usually ask people about is the best ways to monetize their show. In your case, you were talking about that network has a value to you. Have you thought about any other way that you might monetize your show or do you just want to keep it the way that it is?

I want to crack the sponsorship code, but I haven’t been able to figure that out because it’s an immediate form of income for your podcast. It’s more immediate. Whereas the business development route takes more time. It’s a long-tail approach, which works, but it’s not as immediate as a sponsorship.

You’re not alone, there are a lot of people who want that. That’s important to them. Also, for some people, it’s a bonus because it’s hitting that magic 100 episodes, “Someone thinks I’m valuable. An outside company thinks I’m valuable, so this is a good show.” Let’s talk about your bingeability. You said you’ve been following my show, which I’m flattered by it and appreciate, but what do you think your visibility factor is? Did you ever think about it before I brought up this topic?

I never thought about it in that way before, but as I’ve been reading your show, there’s the binge factor from a guest perspective and then a binge factor from the listener perspective. This is based on their feedback. From the guest’s perspective, it’s my ability to listen because I summarize key takeaways right there live at the end of each episode. For those who may go back and to my podcast, it’s not like that’s recorded separately. I’m listening to you and I’m listening to what you say. I’m writing down catchphrases. I didn’t think anything of that, Tracy, but more and more each guest would start to say, “That was impressive. How did you do that?”

That’s something that I learned as part of my networking etiquette is to be a good listener. There’s a reason why we have two ears and one mouth. We should listen more than we speak. From the audience’s perspective, it’s the resources, giving them access. I didn’t even know this whole operations thing yet, but the pushback I usually get from conference planners and any other event planners for small business-related things is operations isn’t sexy. That’s why we don’t include it. Because of that, it’s ignored, but it’s needed as you’ve pointed out. There’s always that need for processes and systems. There’s a topic that’s not being addressed specifically for small businesses, but then the listeners also get access to these resources that they otherwise would never know about.

TBF 50 | Business Podcast Infrastructure
Business Podcast Infrastructure: Get started. You will not know everything there is to know when you first start.

 

As an example, the episode that we were talking about with Jon Reid. You asked John what are some of the different resources that he uses and he mentioned a feature that HubSpot has. I’m a HubSpot user and I didn’t even know it. I’m like, “I’m checking that out.” I’m making notes on my phone going, “I didn’t even know that.” You find out shocking things for yourself in that process and you go, “I need that.” It is a great takeaway. When I look at the binge factor for your show, there are a couple of things that have to do overall with how you operate the show, which most people follow this casual model of interviewing that they haven’t thought this through.

It’s clear that you have an organization while you don’t make it formal like, “This is the section of where we’re talking about this.” It flows into it, but you clearly have that. For many people, as you know, listening to my show that I always do my post comments after the facts so that the guest doesn’t hear it. I do that for a different reason than you do that. I know that a lot of my guests don’t take the time to listen to the episode. They’re busy. The podcasters are like, “I podcast all the time. I don’t need to hear myself.” It’s more casual for them in terms of being a guest on the show. I can’t get them to listen to it if I don’t tell them that there’s going to be this little extra section talking about their show at the end that they haven’t heard yet. They’re like, “I want to know what she says about me when I’m not there.”

It’s my way to get the podcaster to come back and listen. That’s why I do it that way, but you do it because those are busy people. They probably wouldn’t listen to it because of time constraints. They enjoyed the show with you so they were like, “It was fine. I don’t need to worry about whether it was good or not,” but by you doing those takeaways, you demonstrated a great rapport with them. I love that you do that life on with them because I guarantee you, that’s probably why you’re building a greater, deeper relationship with your guests during that time. Your choice to do it that way is smarter in that case.

I interviewed Kimberly Seltzer, who’s got The Charisma Quotient. She does her pre where she focuses them on a topic she has before her guest is on. That’s her way to control the focus of her guests. Everybody has a different strategy, whether you decide to do it off-air or on-air with them, it is important and critical to the goal that you want to achieve. That’s what you’ve tapped into and done a great job on. From an audience’s perspective, the binge factor is that you go into this, whether you’re in operations, you like systems or you don’t, you’re going into it thinking, “This is not the sexiest. This is not the most exciting subject, but you are passionate about it.”

You are fun on your show. You giggle a lot, which I love because it is not boring at the end of the day. When you define something, you don’t make us feel like, “You guys should know this.” You’re just, “Let me redefine that acronym.” That way you’re covering the gamut of people who are listening to your show without being pedantic about it. That’s valuable because a lot of people go into an operations position without the formalized experience, especially in a small business or an entrepreneurial venture. You get thrown into having to do those things and you didn’t go to school for that.

Thank you so much.

You can learn a lot from her show. I love that you can learn so much there. I’ve been learning a lot. This is the thing, have you done this series yet with CEOs?

Yes. It proceeded to COOs.

I missed those. I’m going to go back and check them because I would suspect that this is a big challenge for a lot of us as CEOs. Who do we hire? Who we put into this operations position is a big challenge.

That’s why I said, “We’re going to start off with the person at number one position and then we’ll follow up with a season of the number two position and educate the two about each other.”

I’d love that. That’s a great plan. I’m excited for you. You’ve gotten some speaking engagements and some other things for it. What have you seen happening from an authority building perspective from the show?

You will not know everything there is to know when you first start, but just get started. Click To Tweet

It has changed my business. This is not an exaggeration. Podcasting has provided the medium and the mechanism through which I have been able to expand, not only my network but to expand my reach. Here’s another metric I forgot to mention that I do look at is the number of countries where their episodes have been downloaded. That gives you bragging rights also to be able to say, “I have 100 episodes and it’s been downloaded in over 35 countries.” That’s something I can add to my bio. There’s something about being able to say that you’re a podcaster, it stops people. They’re like, “Really?” Just from the fact that you say that you are a podcaster, people know that you automatically aren’t afraid of public speaking.

That is true. You have good communication skills.

You’re not afraid to be behind the mic. There are a lot of people that I know who are vocal on social media, and then you invite them onto your podcast and they are afraid. It’s because it’s a form of public speaking. It has significantly enhanced everything I was trying to do in my business. It has accelerated a lot of things that I was trying to do in my business. I was spinning my wheels, like, “What am I going to do? I know I need to get out of my backyard, but how am I going to do that?”

TBF 50 | Business Podcast Infrastructure
Business Podcast Infrastructure: Part of good networking etiquette is to be a good listener.

 

I wanted to get back to it before we end the episode here that you wrote a book and that was before you started your podcast and it was called, Behind the Facade: How to Structure Company Operations for Sustainable Success. I’ve put it on my Kindle list because this is something that we’re working towards. It’s timely for me, but how did your book do before and then after the podcast?

I’m glad you asked that because I did not appreciate the importance of being able to build a community before you put a book out there. I did it the opposite way.

We have a podcaster, Juliet Clark, who’s also my partner on Marketing Monday Mixer, which we do on Facebook Live once a week on Monday nights. She has Promote, Profit, Publish, and in that order because this is what most authors find out after the fact professionally.

Why didn’t I meet you guys before? I didn’t know any better, Tracy, but I know better now. Sales were okay. It hit the bestseller list on Amazon when it was first released, but it did well by the time I did a second promotion during a Small Business Month in May 2019. In fact, it hit the bestseller list again.

Once you get into that right audience, that boost makes a difference. I suspect you have guests who are like, “I’m going to pick up the book because I enjoyed this and I want to hear what you have to say.”

That’s a complimentary gift for each of my guests. I emailed them a copy of my book.

That’s a great way for all authors and podcasters to utilize your book and make sure that it’s getting the circulation that it needs to the right type of people. Do you have any tips before we go for starting podcasters, those that are struggling to have it take off at the beginning of starting their show?

Just get started. Think about what you want to talk about, the frequency at which you can commit to because once you start if you say you’re going to have a weekly show, it should be a weekly show. If you’re going to have a monthly show, make sure it’s monthly. Don’t overcommit, pace yourself, and follow Tracy Hazzard so that you can know everything that you need to know about podcasting. I’m impressed by you, Tracy.

This is how we met. Alicia reached out and we connected. This is exactly what you need to do when you find a great podcast. I want to make sure that I also highlight your company name is called Equilibria, which is a great name. I love that name. It’s such an interesting goal. That’s what you aspire to have your organization sound like, feel like, and look like. It’s perfect for that. I want to make sure that I highlighted that for you as well, but the Business Infrastructure – Curing Back Office Blues, I love the subtitle that you have on your show as well. It’s a great show. Everyone, you have to take a listen to it. Reach out and find Alicia wherever you like to hang out, whether it’s Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, or LinkedIn, you’ll find her there. Thank you, Alicia. I’m glad you came on.

Thank you, Tracy. I appreciate it.

Building Your Business Podcast Infrastructure Like A Pro With Alicia Butler Pierre — Finals Thoughts

I hope you enjoyed that interview as much as I did with Alicia. The topic of business infrastructure is critical to a growth-stage business. It is critical to being able to get up to the level that so many of you tell me that you want in your businesses. That’s why a lot of you are using podcasting. You’re trying to scale up in that. When you don’t build that infrastructure underneath you and behind the scenes, then you aren’t able to grow as fast as you would like to because you’re still being the chief everything officer. Think about that and understand what that means. When you don’t have formal education, when you haven’t gone through all the things that Alicia and all of the great guests that she has on her show, understand and deep about what makes truly great infrastructure. That’s when you want to catch a podcast that is both fun and educational in teaching what’s critical and important in that process.

There's a reason why we have two ears and one mouth, and that is we should listen more than we speak. Click To Tweet

I learned a lot from her. I’ve been checking out her show, not just from when I first interviewed her, but I’ve been checking it out since then. It still astounds me at the detail and the qualities of what she gets. She has this great binge-able factor and feature of doing the takeaways at the end so that you hear clearly what was said, and it’s repeated to you at the end. I think that’s a super valuable tactic and interesting that she does it with her guests on the line. You definitely want to check out her show for that. The Business Infrastructure Podcast by Alicia Butler Pierre. She’s amazing. Go check out TheBingeFactor.com. It’s brand new. We renovated the site. We’ve pulled it off and separated completely from Feed Your Brand. It’s all out on its own and it’s got all the links, all the great things, all the connections up, plus I’m reposting the articles from Authority Magazine. You don’t have to go separate for that. You can look at them right there on the website too.

I’ve got new applications for all of you to apply to be on the show. I want as many diverse shows and diverse experiences as possible. If you are listening to a great show, please recommend that host. If you are a host, who’s searching for that next level on what’s going on, also, reach out because I have an opportunity for you to be featured as well in our future Giving Tuesday show feature that’s coming up. It’s going to be coming out there and we’re going to be featuring new and show that is under-appreciated. There are lots of ways for us to play together and us to get this community growing, thriving, and serve our audience well so that they bend on our every word and buy everything we have to sell. Wouldn’t that be fantastic? Until next time.

Don’t miss Tracy Hazzard’s Authority Magazine article about Alicia Butler Pierre too!

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Tracy Hazzard

Tracy Hazzard

Tracy Hazzard is an Authority Magazine columnist, former Inc. Columnist on disruptive innovation, and host of 5 top-ranked podcasts including: The Binge Factor and Feed Your Brand–one of CIO’s Top 26 Entrepreneur Podcasts. She is the co-founder of Podetize, the largest podcast post-production company in the U.S. As a content, product, and influence strategist for networks, corporations, marketing agencies, entrepreneurs, publications, speakers, authors & experts, Tracy influences and casts branded content with $2 Billion worth of innovation around the world. Her marketing methods and AI-integrated platform, provides businesses of all sizes a system to spread their authentic voices from video to podcast to blog, growing an engaged audience and growing valuable digital authority.
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