Have you thought about how to use your summit to boost your podcast visibility? If you’re ready to get even more out of your summit hosting experience, then get ready because this snippet of a session from Sell With a Summit: Podcaster Edition is going to help you figure out the best ways to utilize your summit in your podcast visibility strategy. You’ll be hearing from Michelle Lewis, founder of Visibility Vixen, where she helps entrepreneurs skyrocket their visibility and launch their unique show strategy, plus so much more through her awesome Visibility Lounge. Here we go!
Michelle Lewis: Hey Jenn, I’m so excited to be here. Thanks for having me.
Jenn: So before we dive into the details of how podcasters can use their summit to boost their visibility, can you give us kind of a quick overview of how you approach visibility and how that’s different from general publicity?
Michelle Lewis: Absolutely. So I think there’s a huge difference between visibility and publicity and this became really clear to me coming from a Hollywood background, getting started, figuring all these things out, and I was noticing that people were treating getting on podcasts, getting publications the same as if they were getting a lot of followers on Instagram. And so it felt like they were just throwing spaghetti all over the wall. They were just launching their businesses – myself included – and then wanting to get like on Oprah the next day.
So I was like, there has to be more of a systematic process for this. And that’s when I started digging in myself and figuring out, okay, this is step one, this is step two. And it made things so much easier. So what I figured out over my many years in this industry is that visibility is really about what you’re doing to drive traffic to your offers, build your subscribers, and get revenue.
So visibility needs to equal income. Publicity is what you’re doing to gain credibility, authority, and trust in the online space. A lot of people think, well, if I get this show or I get on this dream podcast, my bank account’s going to explode. That’s not always the case. It’s a nice side effect, but it’s not the primary driver of publicity. So that’s what I found the biggest differentiation is.
Jenn: Awesome. So that’s really good to know ’cause I do think a lot of people get the two confused and they just think they’re the exact same thing. So I’m really glad we got to lay that baseline.
So when it comes to visibility and driving that traffic, getting those subscribers, what are a couple of ways that you’d say a summit can make a big impact on a podcaster’s visibility, with that definition in mind?
Michelle Lewis: Absolutely. The nice thing about guesting on a summit, like I’m doing right now, is you’re able to usually talk to the show host or have a 20 to 30 minute presentation. You’re able to dive deep into one aspect that you really know and love. And the great thing is that the audience feels that, the audience usually has much more of a instant connection to you on a summit than they do on a podcast. They can see you, they can interact with you. They’re here to learn one specific thing – that really grows the trust – and so they’re excited to take the next step with you.
Jenn: So in your experience, what are some ways that a podcaster – and now a summit host – can leverage their summit hosting experience to get even bigger visibility and publicity opportunities both before and after the summit is over in terms of publicity opportunities?
Michelle Lewis: I think what’s really great is if you are hosting your own show and if you just hosted your first virtual summit, you’re usually able to connect with some higher profile guests, especially if you can pitch it correctly. And what’s nice about that is that you’re then able to leverage that into, okay, do I want my first TV appearance? Do I want my first publication? Do I want to be featured on this dream podcast that I’ve been drooling over for a couple of years? And you can actually customize the fact that you’ve been this authority with podcasting and your virtual summit inside of your pitch. And being sure to also include this – especially if you don’t necessarily have a brand video yet – taking pieces of you hosting these two things and putting it into a nice brand video that lives on your press page, using the logo from not only your show, but your summit on your press page.
A lot of people feel like, well, I’ve never been on anything. I can’t… you know, there’s nothing to pull from. It’s like, well, pull from your own stuff for now. People don’t really necessarily care what the logo is, they just want to see a logo. They want to know that you’ve been featured somewhere, so just pull from your own arsenal and then customize that in your pitch, especially in your mini bio to showcase what you have been an authority in, and that can really increase your ability to book that press, especially after your summit.
Jenn: So you mentioned using the publicity side of things and using a press page. So is that something that you feel is important for podcasters and eventually summit hosts to you have? Like, is that something, when you guest on a podcast, when you’re a speaker on a summit, should you be putting that kind of thing onto a press page on your website or your podcast site to kind of boost your visibility and publicity?
Michelle Lewis: Absolutely. The days of old-school PDF media kits are over. People don’t want to have those attachments in their emails; they don’t trust them. You know, I get them every day for my show and I just say, please put this into a press page, put it into a page on your website. And plus this enables people to see everything that you’ve done.
Like we’ve been talking about, you have a little brand video at the top. You have the logos of the things that you’ve been guesting on- this is a huge credibility establisher and having this one-stop shop where a host or an editor can go and see, what are the main talking points? What is he or she an expert in? Where have they been featured? What’s their brand, what’s their vibe? What do they stand for? Where do they give? I like to include where I give on my press page. This is huge.
And this is how my students have been able to book these huge high-profile shows and publications with zero experience because they’ve leveraged their uniqueness into a press page. So I think it’s a must for any entrepreneur, no matter what level you’re at.
Jenn: Yeah, that’s really good to know. And I know that press pages can sometimes feel intimidating for folks. Do you have any tips on how to build that out and do you ever find that it’s helpful to have a press page before you start pitching summit speakers too, just out of curiosity?
Michelle Lewis: Absolutely. This is what I did. I mean, I didn’t know anybody. I was a total unknown nobody when I launched my first season of my podcast and my first summit, but what I did have? I did have a Hollywood background, so I knew how to make it look really shiny. And so that’s what I did. I just leveraged my experience. I got on video, told them what I wanted to do with my summit. My first summit was interesting because we actually shot it in person, so all the guests came to LA. I didn’t pay for them to come to LA. I just said, “here’s the opportunity. I’m going to be able to give you a reel when you’re done. We’re shooting it with 4k cameras. Here’s the IMDB of my husband and my dad. Here’s my press page, and if you want to be a part of this, we would love to have you.” And 10 people came as speakers. So it was really kind of a unique opportunity, but I think, you know, you have to leverage what you have and being able to have a press page together, to be able to give to other speakers, to see your validity is huge.
And building a press page, it’s not scary. I know it feels scary, but if you can put all this stuff with, you know, a thousand words into a PDF for a media kit, you can definitely translate that into a webpage. Keep it simple: put your name and expertise at the top, your brand video, your mini bio, your logos, your key talking points, your brand videos, and then any extra information you want. It literally is that simple and it makes such a difference when you’re pitching.
Jenn: Yeah, I know that having it really laid out really definitely helps folks who are considering either having you on a podcast or a summit or any other kind of appearance, or are considering speaking at your summit – it’s definitely something that they look for is that professionalism. So thank you for sharing that too, because hopefully that’ll help take the overwhelm and the intimidation down for folks.
Something I hear over and over again from summit hosts is “why aren’t my speakers promoting?!” And it’s like you said: they have lives. They already have marketing plan that they have to try to fit the summit into, and so it can be hard. So would you ever recommend, especially as a podcaster, someone who’s used to go in and being behind the mic and maybe your guests have a podcast or a YouTube show or something like that. Do you ever recommend going and offering to guest on their show before the summit to kind of give them an opportunity to like, get that visibility for you and make it easier for them to promote as well?
Michelle Lewis: You can definitely do that. I think what’s really smart, if you’re going to do a virtual summit, is that we spend so much time in prep and recording that when it comes to promotion, that’s kind of the last thing that we focus on because we have so much preparation going into it.
So as you’re starting to plan your speakers and the interviews and all that kind of stuff, that’s when I’d actually start pitching to get on podcasts. Podcasts of my possible guests, but more so other podcasts that have really big followings that I can get excited about the upcoming summit, looking at that as a traffic generating source. So this is a nice angle, especially if you’re pitching for articles or TV, appearances, or local magazines, you know, “so-and-so hosted the upcoming [virtual summit here] is helping entrepreneurs to blah, blah, blah.” That’s a much easier thing to do than, “hey, she hosted a summit two weeks ago,” right?
So getting people excited for this momentum and using that as part of your publicity strategy and doing it far enough in advance that you’ll be able to book the interview and be able to have it released before the summit airs, I think is really important when it comes to integrating it into your PR strategy.
Jenn: So I know we’ve talked about a lot of stuff. So what would be one specific action step that a podcast or turn summit hosts should take right away after this to start planning their visibility strategy?
Michelle Lewis: Just sit down at a coffee shop or your dining table with a couple sheets of white paper and just figure out okay, what do I want to do with this summit? And what do I want this to be? Niche down your summit as much as you can. People want to learn specific strategies.
So if you’re amazing at systems, niche down on that. If you’re great at branding, niche down on that. Publicity, uh, I don’t care, homeschooling – whatever your zone of genius is – and figure out okay, who’s my target audience? Sketch out, you know, 20 people that you’d love to interview so that you can start that outreach process. Get together the landing page that’s going to describe to the speaker everything that they’re going to learn. Jenn did a fantastic job with this, with her summit, made it really easy for the speakers.
And then, you know, get your press page together and start pitching to try to start landing these podcasts, stages possibly, publication so that you can start really optimizing your visibility and publicity strategy.
And then, as always, as you’re getting closer to the promo time, get everything scheduled in advance. Have the social media posts rollout, have, you know, the pins go out the newsletters go out. There’s so much to get in charge of and to try to figure out so that all you have to do are the live streams and promo a couple of days before and the day of. I know it’s not one thing, but I’m saying the one thing would be to sit down and sketch it all out because then you can start inputting it into your calendar and not feeling as overwhelmed since it’s all out of here and onto here. I think that’s the best advice I could give.
Jenn: Yeah, there’s so much that goes into a summit, so I love that you just… plan it because that’s going to help so much.
Alright, so I know that you also have a video series to help us take the visibility strategy even further, so can you tell us a little bit about that before we wrap up?
Michelle Lewis: Absolutely. So Jenn and I were figuring out, okay, what’s the best thing that I could give? And I think my video training series that breaks down all the stages of visibility and publicity, like we’ve been overviewing in this conversation, would be most beneficial to you. So we are going to be giving you the Podcast Stages and Publications video training series.
You can just, you know, click in there, give your email, it will be coming to you over the next four days and you can watch that at your convenience on your phone and just start figuring out, sketching out what those steps look like for you so that you can have the best benefit when it comes to either promoting yourself via your online summit or your podcast, or possibly both.
Jenn: Awesome. Alright. Well, I’m so excited to see everybody go and put this into place becaus visibility and publicity is so important when it comes to getting more out of your podcast. So thank you so much for being here, Michelle and sharing all of your great wisdom and just dropping all these knowledge bombs on us.
So thank you so much again for being here, Michelle.
Michelle Lewis: I’m so glad to be here. Thanks for the opportunity and good luck to everyone.
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