Podcasts

Lessons Learned From Getting Your First 5500 Podcast Downloads

By September 21, 2020 No Comments

What sort of transformation and results are possible once you launch your podcast for the first time?

Dr Amy Robbins, host of the Life, Death & Space Between podcast, joins Rob Cressy one month after her first podcast launch to give an update on her results. In this episode you will learn:

  • How Dr Amy Robbins received 5500 podcast downloads in the first month despite having only 300 followers on Instagram and 9 on Twitter
  • How to gain more confidence as you go through the podcast launch process
  • How to connect with more people and get guests to come on your podcast
  • How to do more of exactly what you are meant to do
  • How launching your podcast can be easy
  • Why making your podcast episodes bingeable can lead to huge results
  • How launching your podcast can help more people

Here is a transcription of our conversation and some of the best nuggets from it:

Rob Cressy:
And the reason I wanted to talk to you again, is I wanted to get an update on what’s been going on with your podcast since we last spoke a month ago, which was one week into your podcast launch.

Dr Amy Robbins:
So much has been going on that I can barely keep up. This has turned into a full-time job. On top of my part-time job, on top of my full-time job of being a mom. So the podcast has probably close to 5,500 downloads. I’ve reached out to some of, really, the kind of predominant people in the field of what I’m exploring, which is death, life, death, near death experiences, mediumship. And so I’m partnering with some of those people to do sort of mini-podcasts about some of the offerings they have on their sites. I’m going to New York in a couple of weeks to promote my podcast on Cheddar!

Rob Cressy:
Nice.

Dr Amy Robbins:
What else? Those are the big highlights, and then just like the every day. I mean, I just am floored. I think I talked about this last time. I only have now like 300 followers on Instagram. I think maybe I’m up to 9 on Twitter. And so this is just been a viral experience of people just spreading the word to their friends, to other people they think would be curious. And everybody’s listening to all the episodes, or it seems that way because the episodes have consistent downloads across the board. So it’s like if someone’s getting there because they were connected to the person that I’m interviewing, they’re not just listening to that podcast. They’re going and listening to all the podcasts, which shows me that there’s an interest in this topic.

Rob Cressy:
Which is fantastic. So have you started working on increasing the level of fan engagement that you can get? So now that you’ve got these interviews where people are consistently listening to them, and even though you don’t have big social numbers, I would think that the next level for this would be, you’re going to slowly start building a community of people and having people reach out to you and say, “Amy, I listened to this episode and I was inspired by this, or it made me think about this, or this was my story.”

Dr Amy Robbins:
Yes, I’m trying to. So I’m integrating some more like themed podcasts around people who have had spiritual or mystical experiences that they want to share, to either write me about them, tell me about them, get on an interview, and I will turn those into podcasts. So I’m just starting to do that because the interest has just grown and I’m trying to get feedback as to what people like, what they want to hear more about. And I think people really are loving the personal stories and the encounters that they hear other people have had that give them comfort and hope.

Rob Cressy:
So is your creative brain starting to think differently or expand more based off of things that we worked on together? So from the regular episodes, to micro-episodes, to what is possible for a podcast episode and/or your podcast as a whole?

Dr Amy Robbins:
Oh, totally. I mean, first of all, I’m so much less rigid now about things. It just flows and I’m totally open to kind of whatever comes to me in terms of an idea or a possibility for a podcast, and engaging my audience in the podcast. It doesn’t necessarily always need to always need to be someone in the field who has years of study and experience in this. It can be your everyday person off the street who has had this type of spiritual or mystical experience to come and talk, because I think that that makes it tangible for people. And then it becomes, “Oh, there’s lots of people having spiritual, mystical experiences.”

Rob Cressy:
Where is your confidence level right now in you as a podcast host compared to where you started?

Dr Amy Robbins:
Oh my God. I mean, compared to where I started, like 150% more confident than where I started.

Rob Cressy:
And what is bringing on the confidence?

Dr Amy Robbins:
I think just a comfort in one, editing. Two, that people have been really open and responsive. Not only to the podcast, because you know I was really nervous about putting this out there. But they’ve been really reaching out to guests has been amazing. I mean, it’s hard to remember kind of where I was when I last talked to you, I guess you said I was only a week in.

Rob Cressy:
Yeah, five days in I believe.

Dr Amy Robbins:
Yeah. So I reached out to, one, a couple of really renowned people in the field and they were totally willing to do it. And then I just saw something on Instagram one day and reached out to someone. She responded right away and was like, “I would love to talk to you on your podcast.” And this was someone interestingly that I had heard about years ago and never really looked at her work. And her current work is more relevant to what I talk about on my podcast. But when I reached out to her and I thanked her for being so quick to get back to me, she was like, “When I saw you emailed me, I knew I had to be on your podcast.” My podcast was like two weeks old at the time. So things like that, that happened that just make me feel like, okay, this is what I should be doing at this time.

Rob Cressy:
And has your mindset shifted about how you think about who you go after in terms of booking guests? So now that you’re starting to go after more high profile people, now the sky is the limit, right?

Dr Amy Robbins:
Yeah, absolutely. I mean, now I feel like I can sort of be really thoughtful and purposeful about everybody that I put on. And one of the things she said to me was, “I didn’t even care who else you had on your show. I just knew I wanted to be on your show,” which was so affirming for me. I mean, I was like, “Well, why would you want to be on my show? My show has been on for two weeks.” But she just loved the topic. She loved the way I was talking about things and thinking about things. And so that was really validating for me.

Rob Cressy:
Awesome. So you had mentioned that you are doing exactly what you are meant to do. Describe that a little bit more of how that has brought something out of you.

Dr Amy Robbins:
Well, I mean, I think that we’re always… This sort of gets to more of what I talk about in my podcast… is that we’re always learning. We should be, in my opinion, always looking to learn and grow and push ourselves and move ourselves towards just a greater purpose. And I had known for a long time that I wanted to get my voice out there in a larger way and impact more people. And I had seen the effects of the work I was doing in my practice with people. But I couldn’t quite find the right way to do that. And then, I think I had talked about in the last podcast, I had explored some other things and this just felt right. And it continues to feel right, and part of how I know it’s right, is that it’s not hard.

Dr Amy Robbins:
It doesn’t feel like a challenge to book people. As a matter of fact, like I’ve started to build a really small team for myself, which I talked about last time. But I’m really relying on those people to help me because I can’t keep up with reaching out to guests, reaching out to other podcasts to try to be on, reaching out to PR trying to get my name out there a little bit more and trying to be thoughtful about how I’m engaging with, maybe doing some outreach and doing small groups and things like that. Just trying to market myself, which is something that I’ve never been comfortable with. It’s hard for me, but I’m doing it and I’m growing and it feels good.

Rob Cressy:
I love it. And that’s why the podcast launch process is so important, because what I want is for you to be able to get into that comfort zone, the confident zone and feel the good, amazing things that can come from podcasting. So many people get stuck before they even start because, as we saw, this as a process to get to launching your first four episodes of your show, and then once you start seeing the fruits of your labor and what’s possible. It’s why podcasting is so amazing, but it’s also why it’s so important to have someone help guide you to get through the hard part so you can get to the good stuff.

Dr Amy Robbins:
Yeah. I mean, I don’t think I could have done this without you. Because I was just on a friend’s podcast the other day, who I had spoken to a while back as well when I was first exploring all of this, and I spoke to you. He had a podcast for years and is just relaunching. And I just look back and I remember those conversations. I remember where I was. It was in my car on my way home from work when I spoke with you and just thinking, “Oh my God, this seems so daunting.” And you saying, “Well, I’ll send you my…” Your book.

Rob Cressy:
The free ebook.

Dr Amy Robbins:
Your free ebook. And reading through it and being like, I don’t think I can do this myself. And I’m like, “All right. I’m just going to hire you. I’m just going to pay the money, suck it up. And hopefully that will get me there.” And I have. So you said, “Get those first four episodes.” I launched my 13th episode today. I have episode 14 coming out Monday. I have five in edits and am continually recording probably two to three a week. So it’s just moving at such a fast pace. Now I keep saying to my husband, “I think it’s time I needed my own office.” You people who are listening can’t see, but I’m working out of my son’s bedroom. And I just am like rotating rooms wherever I can get the best wifi, and who’s ever not home that’s where I kind of plop myself. But I’m really finding I probably need my own space for this because it’s something.

Rob Cressy:
And did launching with four episodes help you build that momentum to get to where you are now?

Dr Amy Robbins:
Yeah. I mean, my episodes, they were bingeable. And I think that that’s what happened is I told my story. The first episode was like a trailer, and then I told my story and then I had three more. I launched with five episodes. So I had three more episodes that people could download. And I think that that was really helpful. One, in building my confidence. And two, it gave me a lot of momentum where people were listening and engaged and wanting to hear more. And so then when I was launching them every week, it was like, “Oh great. I can’t wait to listen to the next one.” And it’s not a series. It’s not like serial or where you have to listen to the one before to hear the next one. But it definitely helped with keeping the momentum going and the interest there.

Rob Cressy:
What has been the best parts of launching your podcast?

Dr Amy Robbins:
Oh my God. Hearing how it’s changing the way people are thinking about things. It’s moving people from like a rigid way of thinking to a more open way of thinking. It’s helping people, which was my purpose in doing it, was to help more people. And it is. And so that’s amazing, but I’d love more feedback on it, cause people aren’t reaching out as much as I’d like them to, to let me know how it’s helped them.

Rob Cressy:
So here’s the tip for you. You can never stop soliciting engagement or giving the opportunity for it. So there is a silent majority and a vocal minority in almost all things content creation. Everything you’re going to do, the majority of people aren’t going to say anything. However, the brands that traditionally fail at engagement, don’t give their audience the opportunity to do so. So they’ll be like, “Oh, this didn’t work. We’re going to stop asking the questions during the podcast to engage with me and our guests.” What you need to do, and everyone, is consistently ask the questions and not worry about if anybody responds. Because the key is you have to do your part for the engagement. You can’t control if someone’s going to respond back to you. But as you continue to engage more, and then all of a sudden a guest sends you a story and you have them on the podcast, or you read something about it.

Rob Cressy:
You’ll start to build momentum because social proof ends up happening. One person will hear what somebody else saw on this show and like, “Oh my God, this is awesome.” You can incentivize people. You can have them when they do a rating and review in iTunes, you can say, “I want you to,” and have a specific call to action. And “Hey, I’ll read whatever’s in your iTunes review on the show if you answered this specific thing.” So there’s a lot of different ways that you can try and drive fan engagement, but the key is don’t ever stop asking.

Dr Amy Robbins:
Yeah. So Raymond Moody, who is the foremost researcher in near death experiences, started this University of Heaven and they’re doing webinars that they charge for. So one of the things we’re doing is offering a promotion where if you snap a picture of your review, email it to them, they’re going to put you in a raffle to win a free webinar. So things that are just partnering, which feels so good. It feels so good to be able to work with people in this field who want to get this out more, and want it more in kind of the public consciousness, to all be working together, which is so unique for me because I’ve been so isolated for 15 years, just working in my office, a little safe space and coming home at the end of the day. So that’s been challenging for me. I realized how comfortable I was, and it just got me to thinking how comfortable we all get kind of doing our routine and not necessarily pushing ourselves.

Rob Cressy:
Last thing. If someone has been thinking about creating a podcast for a while, or they’ve been debating on if they should get someone to help them launch their podcast, what do you have to say to them based on your experience?

Dr Amy Robbins:
If you really are committed and want to do it, get help. That’s my advice for everything. I get a lot of help. I mean, I have a skill set. I’m trained in clinical psychology. That is my skillset. I don’t know anything, didn’t know anything about podcasting. You did. So I needed help to learn about that skillset. And I need help with social media and editing. And eventually I have a feeling that I might be moving toward maybe an assistant to help me with booking and things like that because I have a really full life. My life isn’t podcasting. I work. I’ve got kids. I’ve got a husband. I’ve got me, which is super important to me is that myself doesn’t fall by the wayside in all of this, that I can still get to the gym and exercise and get that out. And so it just feels really good.

If you want to hear Dr Amy Robbins first time experience launching her podcast, you can check it out HERE.

Rob Cressy

Rob Cressy

Sports loving free throw specialist and yinzer living in Chicago who is awesome most of the time, has run with the bulls in Spain, and is a graduate of Second City's Improv program.