“It’s not enough to be inspired.
It’s all about what you do with the inspiration!
What actions will you take— today?
Who will you help?
What will you change?”
I fell into the good fortune of being able to have a one-on-one interview with the award-winning ‘Best of iTunes’ entrepreneur podcast host, John Lee Dumas (JLD) of Entrepreneurs On Fire.
In reality, I didn’t just “fall” into this amazing opportunity to connect personally with JLD. I put in the work— practicing what I teach, networking online with offline principles, all the while coming from a place of service. This includes taking the time to make meaningful connections and knowing when to bring in the right person who is already an expert on the next steps to take to level-up in business.
Entrepreneurs On Fire
I was invited to a private mastermind community event at JLD’s Puerto Rico residence. Just coming off the heels of a 7-day, overseas media trip with Carnival, I was too exhausted to make it to this particular occasion. My disappointment about missing out on this event was because I wanted to share all the golden nuggets of knowledge and information with you!
But never fear— because I’m full of creativity, I have the next best thing!
My one-on-one conversation with JLD, himself!
All about how he engages with his audience of over a million monthly podcast listens; yes— I said millions! And how you should be doing these same things, no matter the size of your following.
It’s a great day to send a brilliant newsletter message that doesn’t resonate because it’s going to all the wrong people— Said no one ever!
I just scaled *down* my email list of over 11k subscribers— removing a large chunk of that number in inactive emails!
Wait— “Watchu talkin ’bout, Willis?”
When I started my blog three years ago, I was writing all about my tableware collections at home and my style with whimsy!
While I still love all of those things, today, I’ve evolved into a speaker and a business coach, sharing my lifestyle experiences and my philosophies in business, especially in today’s digital economy.
I love to share my knowledge-based stories so you can see that these same successes are possible for you, too!
You should know that I didn’t delete my list of inactive subscribers. I filtered them out and placed them on hold— on a separate spreadsheet that I can come back to later, or for another topic!
The point is, I want to make sure my messages are landing in the inboxes of the right people. Meeting an active and engaged audience right where they need me to be for them. My focus is on the few in the crowd, like you, that are ready with their hands up and want to take the road less traveled, like me, to stand out in a crowded entrepreneurial space.
I’m incredibly excited to share with you my conversation with JLD. I know it will serve you well!
Now the moment that you’ve been waiting for. What did John Lee Dumas have to say about audience and engagement?
John Lee Dumas is the host of Entrepreneurs on Fire, an award winning podcast where he interviews inspiring Entrepreneurs who are truly ON FIRE!
With over 2000 episodes, 1 million + listens a month, and seven-figures of annual revenue, JLD is just getting started.
I asked John how important is old school one-on-one engagement? In his own words, “The most important.”
JLD talked about differentiating oneself in business by doing things that don’t scale. He called it “Putting in the work.” There’s a bot or an automative process for most tasks today, which he said are a part of his larger-scale marketing strategies. However, that can never replace the power of one-on-one engagement in a meaningful way.
Some examples of how he enjoys interacting with his audience in meaningful ways:
– Personal video messages that he sends via email (John specifically referenced using Loom video recording).
– Instagram DMs— in a voice message.
JLD emphasized how personal messages can ignite a casual listener into an evangelist fan! Once again, the power in making meaningful connections.
Plus, videos and voice memos are creative and a level-up beyond typed responses. Hello— we are in today’s digital age!
JLD described the value of personal engagement this way, “One of those individuals (evangelist fans) is worth one hundred of just the casual listeners!”
He spends a lot of time personally answering e-mails and DM’s for individual, personalized interactions in voice messages and videos— making sure to use each listener’s name when he does this! (Hello, Shaunda!)
His audience knows that it’s him personally responding, and not a virtual assistant. “Super meaningful.”
Next, I asked JLD how much time he spends on this type of personal engagement?
He commits one to two hours interacting each day personally, citing “Everything in moderation, even moderation.” JLD references his strict calendar of focused priority to keep a balanced focus.
Clearly, carving out up to 10 hours a week on audience engagement shows how important this is!
From his point of view, I wanted to hear why he thinks entrepreneurs commonly make the mistake of not staying in touch with their audience?
His answer was one word— “Distraction.” What he described as “the bright shiny object syndrome…The weapons of mass distraction. One thing starts to work, and people just become obsessed with that one thing, and you go all-in on it.”
It takes layers and agility to run any business successfully, so I completely understood when JLD talked about a balanced focus.
Comparing it to a balanced diet, he said, “Just because no-meat works for you in your twenties, it might not work for you in your forties, or flip flop.” It’s not going to be just one thing or one focus to succeed.
He also emphasized that it’s not going to be one thing that’s great and happens forever.
“Maybe this niche plateaus for years and decades…and I would love to see that happen. Could it go away tomorrow or next year? Absolutely. And you have to be prepared for that.”
He shared that, “You need to know that the world’s evolving. Things are changing. Keeping your finger on the pulse for what’s coming up next…all of those things have to be part of this plan.”
In summary, the focus must be balanced and should always include audience interaction. JLD describes the consequences of not doing this as “…the growth will stop. Keep your finger on the pulse.”
Audience engagement is essential— In fact, it’s my most popular keynote topic!
So it was to no surprise that I asked JLD for his one tip for entrepreneurs to avoid the pitfall of not staying engaged with their community?
John talked about taking in experiences, as many as you can in little bites, “So you know what works for you, for your personality, for the lifestyle you want to live, for the financial goals that you have, and for the ways you want to spend the day.”
Words of Wisdom from JLD
“The best analogy that I can come up with on what you need to do to stay in touch with your audience, your people, but also the market because the market’s always shifting and evolving and you need to know where it’s going. Because it’s very possible that your audience today, right now may be going with the market and so just because you stay here doesn’t mean they’re not going to shift over there.”
(Hello— I just removed a large chunk of subscribers from my email newsletter list!)
I couldn’t let JLD go without knowing what’s the one thing he’d say people get wrong about him?
JLD’s answer— “That I work really long hours cause I don’t, I really do not work long hours. I work incredibly hard in massive sprints.”
I know this to be true after a very productive mastermind class about batching tasks with JLD and EOFire’s Kate, of Kate’s Take.
John described to me his schedule for the day with 20 interviews and explained how he doesn’t do a weekly podcast show, asking,
“I mean, why would I do a weekly show? Does anybody get good at anything doing it once a week?”
Questions like this are why I live for thought-provoking conversations!
So many takeaways from my interview with JLD, especially a reaffirmation of why making meaningful connections is one of the best uses of your time in business, especially if the majority of your audience is online!
Pro tip: Try this for your next blog article interview.
I had the audio from my video conversation with JLD transcribed into text with the Temi app.
A HUGE productivity win, and my new favorite way to infuse more technology into my business.
JLD and Kate would be proud! 😉
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