The Business of Podcasting Ep015: Creating More Leverage With a Small Audience With Stephan Spencer

Growing a podcast may be daunting from the get-go, and there are many factors to consider in getting your show to where you want it to be. Well, what if I told you that you can have a successful podcast even with a small audience?

For this episode, we have a chat with Stephan Spencer, one who I consider to be the best expert today on SEO. We’ll be talking about ideas on how to leverage your podcast when you don’t have an audience (or have very little) and the importance of getting a big name on your show early on. 

If you just started your podcast or need new ways to make it grow, this episode has a lot in store for you. Please don’t forget to subscribe, tune in, and share this podcast to anyone who you think will benefit from it.


Creating More Leverage With a Small Audience with Stephan Spencer

Stephan Spencer : What He does

  • Been doing SEO since the 1990s, started first agency in 1994
  • Authored 3 books: 
    • The Art of SEO - the one he's most known for; 
    • Google Power Searches - how to find anything on Google using power user techniques & advanced search operators; and 
    • Social eCommerce - leveraging social media to drive online sales.
  • Curates 2 Podcasts:
    • Marketing Speak - leveling up your online marketing.
    • Get Yourself Optimized Podcast - life hacking, productivity, personality, spirituality, and other topics to help level up your life.

Why He Started Podcasting

  • He enjoys intimate conversations with people.
  • Employs the "Principle of Preeminence": If a client will be better served by a competitor, it's your moral obligation to let them go rather than keep them and their money.
  • He wanted to add massive value to someone's life, their business, and their mission.
  • Podcasts move people due to its intimate nature and activates their creative nature through imagination.

Leverage The Connection Between SEO & Podcasting

  • Strategy is better than just applying all the best practices.
  • "Tactics without strategy is the noise before defeat." - Sun Tzu, The Art of War
  • Always look for the strategy around whether it's a guest, topic, or a technology. Have a dream list of potential mentors you can talk to.
  • You can turn an episode into a case study article or a write up for your company website.
  • Interview (and get interviewed) by someone a lot of people look up to.
  • Your podcast could be a way to create testimonials.

Acquiring Testimonials From Big Brands

  • Offer to help big brands for free in exchange for a testimonial and use of their logo on your site.
  • Give before trying to get something (whether it's a custom product made for their brand or a service), rather than just trying to get something from them.
  • What you give should be relevant and/or personal to the business you're building a relationship (make them feel important and valuable).

Why is getting big names early on important?

  • Have at least one big celebrity-type guest within the first 10 episodes. It triggers a domino effect for future guests of the same caliber.
  • On the same note, if you want to guest on big podcasts, put in the work, be genuine, and add value to them/their brand first.

What can podcasters do to make their show more effective this year?

  • Make an article out of your transcript and publish that on your website.
  • Format the articles so that they could be standalone pieces of content.
  • Repackage your episodes into other formats like Lumen Five Videos, PDF checklists, and Powerpoint slides.
  • Add 'tweetables' and Pinterest pin links in your show notes.
  • Create content based on what people are asking questions about or need answers to.

Pinterest Is A Secret Weapon

  • Pinterest content is evergreen.
  • Volunteer to pin your content to niche boards for free, giving you access to an audience quickly without starting from scratch.
  • Encourage people to pin your content and make sure to have pinnable posts and images.
  • Be a moderator of important community pin boards in your niche.

Reddit & SEO

  • Have a power user (someone who knows Reddit well) represent you.
  • The best way to gain exposure is to post content, like an article, image, or video.
  • Frame your posts in a way that offers value (giving) instead of inviting them to listen to your show (getting).
  • Build influence and create value through "Ask Me Anything" (AMA) posts.


stephan spencer

About Our Guest:

Stephan Spencer is one of the best experts on SEO today, author of a number of books including the well-known “The Art of SEO”, and owner of the Marketing Speak and Get Yourself Optimized podcasts. He’s been podcasting for 4 years now, and is someone who knows what it takes to grow a podcast successfully.

To learn more about Stephan, visit his website and find resources on SEO, recordings of presentations he’s given at conferences, PDF guides, and more.


Learn more about Charley Valher and Valher Media. If you would like to improve your show, grab your copy of the Ultimate Podcast Intro Framework and more helpful resources here: Valher Media’s Resources.

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