Pat Flynn: 5 Powers I Learned from Jeremy & Jason and Internet Business Mastery

pf5

Hey IBM’ers, it’s Pat Flynn from SmartPassiveIncome.com, and I’m really excited to have a chance to publish a guest post here for you on IBM.

Many of you probably know how much Jeremy and Jason have changed my life. When I first discovered their podcast in 2008, I had heard nothing like it before. It was exactly the kick in the pants I needed to successfully recover from a major change in my life after getting laid off. Shortly thereafter, when I joined their Academy and connected with other like-minded entrepreneurs (many who I am still great friends with today!), everything started to fall into place. After getting direct advice from Jeremy and others in a IBM mastermind group, my business helping people pass an architectural related exam started to take off.

You may have seen a testimonial video from me here on IBM way back when I was just starting out. Perhaps you read about me in some emails that Jeremy and Jason have sent you. Whatever the case may be, the truth is that I wouldn’t be where I’m at today, in business and in life, if it weren’t for these two.

So, if you don’t mind, Jeremy and Jason, I just wanted to be selfish here for a moment and take this opportunity thank you both for changing my life, and subsequently the lives of those who I’ve been able to reach as well.

Seriously, thank you.

Ever since I started my online business journey in 2008, there have been a number of key principles and strategies (I like to call them powers) that I learned directly from Jeremy and Jason here at IBM, each of which have been a huge factor in the success I’ve had.

Power #1: The power of having a motivational purpose behind what you do.

It’s so important to have a reason or why for doing all the hard work that’s required upfront, and a purpose to help you keep going when the times get tough and you want to give up. For me, it was (and is) always about my family. I’m super grateful to have my two little motivational purposes (my boy, 5, and my girl, 2) here in the house with me all day, to remind me day in and day out why I do what I do.

Fun fact: Back when I first joined the Academy, Jeremy and Jason called it a DMP, or a “definite major purpose”, to which we were instructed to create three. Now, as you know, it’s the SMP or a “single motivating purpose”, which is even better.

Power #2: The power of delivering value first, and asking later.

I listened to the Internet Business Mastery Podcast daily on the train on my way to and from work during the couple of months I had left before I was officially going to be laid off. They delivered so much value with their show, that when they promoted the Academy for the first time it was an easy decision for me to make. It was the least I could do for all they provided to me free on their podcast and blog.

Plus, since their free content was amazing, I was sure their paid content would be just as, if not even better.

They did not disappoint.

Power #3: The power of a mastermind group.

I had never heard of a mastermind group before Jeremy said he was going to be holding a mastermind meeting 2 miles from my home after he moved to San Diego.

I attended, and it was life changing for me.

Jeremy and other people who attended gave me crucial advice to transform a blog that I had that was making dollars a day on Adsense (greenexamacademy.com), to a full-on business with products that eventually became my entry into the online business world.

As I write this post, I’m in 3 mastermind groups.

Yes – three.

Two that meet weekly, and one that meets monthly, and they are so important to me because I know I can get brutally honest advice from my peers who know exactly what my goals are. They keep me accountable, they keep me motivated, and they keep me on track – and I do my best to serve the other group members in each of those masterminds in the exact same way.

I recently did a presentation at Social Media Marketing World about Mastermind Groups. I recorded a webinar replay which you can watch here, and of course I mentioned IBM in it!

Power #4: The power of hiring help.

After the success of my first product, an eBook study guide for my audience at greenexamacademy.com, I went back to the mastermind group (the one with Jeremy in it) and said, “Ok, what can I do next?”

The next logical step was to convert my written eBook into an audio format that I could sell as an additional product.

As soon as I heard about this, I started recording. I spent 3 days recording the book, word for word, and by the end of it – about 16 man hours later – I had a finished product.

And… it was crap.

The sound quality was terrible, completely unprofessional and nothing I would have been comfortable selling to my audience.

After sharing the bad news with the group, they said, “Wait, you tried to do this yourself?! Outsource it!”

Two weeks later, after finding a voice talent on Elance.com, I had a completed audiobook. It was totally professional and I couldn’t wait to see how well it would sell.

The total cost of production was $1,400, which was hard for me to part with. The most I had ever spent on my business was for my hosting account, and the most I had ever spent in my life at one time was $700 for rent at this point.

After re-vamping the sales page to include the new audiobook, I earned more than $1,400 within the first 48 hours.

That’s when I learned about the power of outsourcing and leveraging, although with that said I’ve still had struggles in the recent past with letting go of some of the things I shouldn’t be doing on my own.

I’m still working on this, as I know many of you are as well.

Power #5: The power of podcasting.

Ever since catching onto Internet Business Mastery, I always knew that I wanted to have my own podcast someday. Jeremy and Jason inspired me and changed my life with the power of their voice, and I wanted to do the same for others.

When I started SmartPassiveIncome.com in late 2008, from my childhood room in my parent’s home (which is where I was staying after I got laid off), I made a formal announcement that I was going to start a podcast.

You can see that announcement (and my room) here.

Well, that was December of 2008. My first episode didn’t go live until July 2010.

…a year and a half later.

Why the delay? Well, there were many reasons:

  1. I was scared of how people would respond to my voice.
  2. It was technically challenging to start a podcast back then.
  3. I was more comfortable with writing, and so I kept doing that instead.

Finally, after getting some direct help from Jason, as well as Cliff from Podcast Answer Man, I had my show up and running for the world to hear.

Last month, my podcast surpassed 15,000,000 total downloads. It’s insane!

The numbers are incredible, but what blows me away the most is how much of a connection people have with the show. Whenever I meet people who have listened, they always tell me the same thing. Because of listening to me on the podcast, they say:

“Pat, I feel like I know you.”

I felt the same way when listening to Jeremy and Jason back in 2008.

Beyond that, I can directly contribute a lot of the success I’ve had within my brand, including the increase in affiliate commissions, the paid speaking gigs that I’ve done, and the publishers knocking on my door to work with me to write a book, directly to the podcast.

I even had a small role in Hollywood as a result of the show.

Last year, I started another podcast for a niche site at FoodTruckr.com, and earlier this year I added a second show to the Smart Passive Income lineup, Ask Pat, where I answer an audience member’s voicemail question 5-days a week!

And yes, that show is outsourced, except for the recording of my answer that I have to do.

It’s awesome.

Sponsorships are coming in as well, I have the rest of 2014 booked and am making between $2,000-$3,000 per episode of The Smart Passive Income Podcast, and between $200-400 per episode of AskPat.

In my April 2015 income report, you can see that I generated over $18,000 in podcast sponsorships alone!

The funny thing is, all three of the reasons why I didn’t start a podcast right away after I announced it are completely nonsense.

1. I was scared of how people would respond to my voice.

No one has EVER commented about my voice, and if you have (or are going to start) a podcast, and someone calls you out about a bad voice, you don’t want them in your audience anyway. Don’t waste your time, because there are others who don’t care about the voice but care about how much you’re actually helping them.

2. It was technically challenging to start a podcast back then.

It wasn’t incredibly difficult – it was just different, and I used that as an excuse not to get started. It wasn’t comfortable, but neither are many other awesome things that happen in life. And today, with how mainstream podcasting is becoming these days, it’s now more easier than ever to get started. You literally have no excuse not to start a podcast anymore.

If you’re interested, I have this free tutorial (no opt-ins required) that will walk you through the entire process, step-by-step.

3. I was more comfortable with writing, and so I kept doing that instead.

Now that I’ve had a few episodes under my belt (and it didn’t take very many episodes to realize this), creating a podcast episode is much easier and faster for me than writing a blog post.

In 2014, for example, I published far more podcast episodes than I did blog posts.

That podcast you’ve always wanted to start…now’s the time.

And if you have a podcast already – awesome! Here’s how you can take it to the next level…

What am I Up to Now?

As always, I’m trying to test my limits and I’m always experimenting with new ideas and business models. Just recently, I co-founded a software company called SPI Labs whose mission is to build smart software solutions for entrepreneurs who want results.

Our first product is based off of something my team custom-built for my own needs:

Introducing: The Smart Podcast Player.

Jeremy and Jason are actually using this on their site right now to play their podcasts, and I couldn’t be more honored by that!

I needed a better looking podcast player for my website with much more functionality than just the standard play, stop and pause buttons.

You see, I found out that about 40% of my podcast plays are coming directly from my website, and this is the case for many other podcasts out there as well. Most of those listens are from first time visitors, which means there’s a huge opportunity to get those people to take more action on your podcast than to just press play, stop and pause, and this is where every other player in the past drops short.

So, I built a solution that allows listeners on the web to do everything you’d want them to do with your podcast beyond play your episodes:

  • Share the episode via social media.
  • Explore and find other podcast episodes in your playlist.
  • Read the show notes and click on links directly from the player.
  • Play the podcast at increased speeds.

And of course, I wanted it to look beautiful.

As a podcast producer, you’re giving your audience a better listening experience, you get more exposure to your show, and an increase in downloads and plays too.

It doesn’t matter what hosting company you use to host your podcast – this player will work to serve your audience your podcast in the best way possible on your website.

My company is always looking to add new features into the player as well, and we have some amazing things lined up. For example, imagine a podcast episode ending and then a pop-up appears to collect an email address. What if the player prompted the listener to leave a rating and review on iTunes?

These are just a few of the amazing things we have planned for the future of The Smart Podcast Player.

It’s been a lot of fun to take a different approach to building a business like this, but the coolest part about doing software is that people pay for the tool and they get immediate value and results from it. Unlike an information product which people have to take time to consume, and then put into action whatever it is you’re teaching, a software product can be installed and within minutes, results can be seen.

That’s been my experience with The Smart Podcast Player, and what gives me the most joy. And if any of you reading this are interested in getting the player, I’d be more than happy to offer you a special IBM rate.

For the next 3 days only, you’ll be able to get The Smart Podcast Player at a special IBM rate of 25% off.

Click this link here to get The Smart Podcast Player and be sure to enter this special promo code checkout:

3daysonly

If you choose to pay annually, you’ll end up saving a total of 50% off the monthly payment option.

This special promotion ends on Thursday, June 4th at 12:00pm (Noon) PST. The cart does not close after that, but the coupon code will no longer work at that time.

If you don’t have a podcast up already but are interested in the tool, don’t get it. I don’t want you to feel like you have to get it now when you should be focusing on getting your podcast up and running first. Later on, after your show is up, feel free to email me and mention that you saw the deal here. Include your podcast link so I can see that your podcast was published after the date of this post, and I’ll be more than happy to honor the deal for you.

Thanks again for letting me share my project here with you. It started out as a side project and experiement, and now it has turned into a full-blown, entirely separate business. You never know where life takes you – but when you see opportunities, make sure you jump on them and don’t let them pass by you.

Don’t let today’s opportunities become tomorrow’s what if’s.

Cheers, thanks so much, and to Jeremy and Jason, thank you for sharing your powers with us!

About the Author

Pat Flynn is a successful entrepreneur, blogger, author, husband and father who writes transparently about what he does online. You can read more about his online adventures at The Smart Passive Income Blog.

Comments

  1. Informative and inspiring, Pat. And how cool is it to credit the guys who got you started. Omward and upward.

  2. I love the internet connections… as I listened to one random episode of John Lee Dumas as my first listen to an “entrepreneur type” podcast I found Pat. Listened to tons of Pat’s episodes and found IBM. Now I listen to more IBM than all of them :). Love you guys Jeremy & Jason. Great value everyday!!

↓