Brett: Who produces your podcast?
Dave: Do you happen to know Brad Circone? He has helped us with our branding, and actually is producing our podcast in our website. And that was kind of the glue that helped us put everything kind of together. You know, somebody that had that, that background. So he's the one that comes in, brings the mix in and produces and edits and, and we're pretty committed to releasing once a week. And that's one piece of advice I'd certainly would give someone as you have to have it professionally done. This is this is not something you do it yourself, you probably could. I don't think you're gonna be happy with the end result.
Brett: Well, let's talk about your background, your adventure to this point. How you started with your career moves. And now you're a podcaster.
Dave: Yeah, how about that. I started with ran associates just about 40 years ago. And my specialty, if you will, is I work with emerging businesses, both on tax consulting, planning and things like of that nature, and really enjoy that aspect of it. And it just so happened, the podcast spot came open after about 50 episodes. And they asked me if I wanted to do it went for a tryout if you will. And I won of course.I was in pretty good shape doing that. But what helps me with with being the host of the podcast, which which you can, again, relate to it, it's not the easiest thing in the world to be the host.
Dave: You've got to figure out the right questions you got to study. But one of the things that helped me is virtually all of the topics that we cover, at least if it's tax and consulting in business, I know a little bit about each of those topics. Sometimes I gotta do a little bit of studying. But for the most part, I've either touched it, felt it, read it talk to somebody had a client in that in that industry. And so that's what makes it work for me as far as being able to ask the questions and the right questions.
Dave: We see where our guest wants to go. And, and I'll typically talk about the new tax law and winners and losers under that, and what do they think about that? And if they could change the tax law, you know, had one day to change the tax law, what would they do, we can take them up to the edge without making it, you know, too political.
Brett: How did the process begin? I know this would before your time. But how did it begin to talk about having a podcast for a CPA firm? That really isn't usually the business category, you think about having a podcast.
Dave: Well, you know, I can tell you how it started. I was a bit on the ground floor is there were three of us, Mark Van Benschoten, a fellow partner mine, myself and Brad Circone, we're just brainstorming, and we were off site having a libation if you will. And it came up that we should do a podcast or start thinking about a podcast. And we started challenging that. And so do you know what, that's maybe an avenue to go, because it may help us with our overall theme of what our culture is, and what we want it to be and what we wanted to, you know, to project it to be.
Dave: Plus showing off the incredible talent that we have around the firm. So we started thinking about that, and how would that mesh with our overall strategy and our strategic plan. And what we what we found is that boy, it meshes pretty nicely.
Dave: But I'll tell you, it was a hard sell. You know, we went to our marketing team, and they said, "You guys, just how long were you at happy hour, we're going to do a podcast?" And and we said, "Sure." And we explained it, and they got on board. And then we went to firm leadership. And they said, "You guys are going to do what? You're going to spend what? What's our rate of return on this? What's going on?" Must have did a pretty good job of selling it. And, and we sold it, and off we go. And we've had leadership on we've had our marketing team on and they enjoy it, and we have fun with it.
Brett: You are in deep with scheduling, obviously, what is the process? How are you doing this? Do you have just a Google Calendar set up? How are you nailing these interviews that they know exactly when they need to be there, what's being covered? This is a weekly interview podcast. It's a lot of machinations going on in the background to make it work, especially when you're batch recording four or five at a time.
Dave: Right. Right. You know, hats off to to our, our marketing team at Rea & Associates. I'm not involved with the scheduling, thank goodness. I'm being scheduled just like everyone else. But let's say, Brett, that we wanted to schedule you. You would get you get a phone call from Abby from our marketing team, see if you were interested. And then tell you a little bit about the podcast and the points that you want to, you know, emphasize, what do you want to talk about, not what we want to talk about. And then those are shared. And then you get a Google invite on your calendar and I get one and boom, it goes on. And and our team knows that it's every other month, every second Thursday, and you can't cancel because when you're scheduled that tight and you have one release a week, if you cancel we we've got a hole in the schedule.
Brett: Are you using the podcast then to focus on new clients, sending them your expertise in an audio format that "we know how to do this."
Dave: It's part of the process. Yes, I would say we use it for that. Not primarily. It's a tool at the disposal. You know, if we were let's say we were in a proposal for a manufacturer we may we may send them a couple podcasts on manufacturing. Or invite them in for a podcast to present their business or present a topic. For example manufacturer we may we may call you in and so in in call you it's not the right, but invite you to come over have a good time talk to us maybe about tariffs.
Brett: How did you decide to do a weekly schedule, or continue to do a weekly publishing schedule?
Dave: Well, first of all, it became a challenge to get people's schedules coordinated and and you being in the business, can appreciate that. And so we decided we were going to stick to it and stay with one day a month. And that was it. The marketing team knew it was would that was going to be it, our production team knew that was going to be it, I knew it was going to be it. And I would say scheduling would be one of the challenges that's way up there, you better have a game plan of how you're going to do that. Because if not, you get you get stuck a little bit. And and so that's one.
Dave: The second, we we talked about earlier is tied into what you're doing, you know, around the, you know, the company or the firm as far as your blogs or or your newsletters or your marketing. I don't know that we would have been successful if we wouldn't have done that.
Brett: Now, the artwork for your podcast is great. I mean, who's putting that together, that the visual presence that you have is, is top notch. Who is putting that together?
Dave: Thank you. Our marketing team is involved in that. And they spent a lot of time doing that. And they have won awards, especially when we first started producing, they won awards, after awards in our industry in the CPA industry for the podcast, because we were one of the first to, to do it on a consistent basis.
Brett: Future plans for the podcast?
Dave: We are going change it, we're going to change it. We want to change it up, and we're looking at time of the podcast. Now we try to stick to 20 minutes, maybe 23 minutes. Some will go a half hour only if the guest is you know, just just hitting on all cylinders. And we can't get out of the conversation. We think that's maybe a little long for some of the topics and so we may take a topic and divided into two podcasts and instead of maybe 30 minutes we we divided into do two separate recording sessions, and can dig into it a little bit a little bit deeper.
Dave: We try also to keep the topic very narrow. If you and I are talking about the new tax law that's a pretty in depth conversation. We won't cover anything. But hey if we want to talk about this deduction or that we can have a good a good conversation and in a period of time. But change you're going to have to change it and we will and we're looking at some some ways to do that.
Brett: What advice would you give any business of any category if they're interested in starting a podcast, how do they begin?
Dave: I would recommend a couple things. One is I think you have to be very consistent with your processes, in your messages. It's not one of these things you can produce a podcast for three months, take a break and then get back after it. I think you have to give it a fair amount of time to take its course, see where it goes. For me again, this is as a CPA, and as an as a as an owner in the firm, I need a rate of return, so I need some kind of feel good that it's working. Whether it's my buddies call me or I go to their house and they got the podcast playing on the on the loudspeaker you know or or something like that. I get an email jag about it that way I know it's working or competitor talks about it. But you have to do that. So I would say consistency and be prepared that in the beginning it's probably not going to go the way you want to go.
Dave: We also talked about scheduling. Stay way ahead of the schedule and be prepared that that schedule may may change. those are the things that have helped us out tremendously.
Dave: And get the marketing team involved, they're number one. I'm not a marketing person never have been and they've helped me kind of design how we want to do that so because they can control the strategy for the content. So definitely your your marketing team.
Dave: And then as far as producers, everyone needs it professionally produced. I'm convinced. I don't know how we could do it alone. We have microphones, we have the ability to do it, but we decided we don't want to do it, it's not the same. We need that professional taking a look at how we're doing it in in in in tying it together and they and they can bring the equipment. I mean our equipment is is for you know having a listening to a webcast, not producing a podcast
Dave: You can find the podcast almost anywhere that podcasts are available. I hear our team say, you know, they listened to an iHeart Radio, they listened to an iTunes, they can go on to our website at ReaCPA.com find it there. If if we have an email if we've emailed you there may be a link in there to that webcast. So that are the places that that can be found. It can be found pretty easily if you're into to podcasting.
Recorded in Studio C at the 511 Studios, located in the Brewery District in downtown Columbus, OH!
Brett Johnson is the owner and lead consultant at Circle270Media Podcast Consultants. The podcast consultants at Circle270Media have over 35+ years of experience in Marketing, Content Creation, Audio Production/Recording, and Broadcasting. We strategically bring these worlds together with Podcasting.
You can email Brett at firstname.lastname@example.org to talk more about your new or established business podcast. www.circle270media.com