The Subtle Art of Not Yelling - Ryan Estes Transcript
10:59PM Feb 15, 2022
Hi, I'm Bill small.
And I'm Miles Hanson.
Welcome to the subtle art of not yelling,
a conversation about growing a business without needing to be the loudest person on the block
less noise more. Today's guest is Ryan Estes, the co founder of podcast booking agency, Kid caster, Ryan owned a media and marketing agency for 10 years. And for eight of those, he hosted talk launch one of iTunes top 100 podcasts, he reported more than 380 views and had more than a quarter of a million downloads. So Ryan knows podcasting. And we're gonna find out about his journey today kind of met through online dating. Yeah,
I swiped right.
Yeah, shapers. Like, it's like, yeah, it's online dating meets LinkedIn. I like it was really cool. I like that app, too. It was neat. Yeah. It's also early traction.
Ryan, you have a, you have kind of a lot in your history. And it makes me not really know where to start. So one of the things that is we always kind of find fun is tell us your story. Like what like, what, how did you get where you are right now?
Yeah, that's a good question. It's a, it's a winding road. And I definitely had chapters, you know, for sure, I think probably was really guided me the last 1015 years is just being a family, man. You know, I got two kids that are awesome. My daughter's a freshman in high school, and my son's in seventh grade. So much of who I am now as a result of them and my wife, and basically, pardon me, putting the reins on the wildness that was my life previous to that, you know, it's kind of maniac for a long time. So, you know, this, this current iteration as a family man, and, you know, businessmen is largely to do with them, and like, figuring out ways to kind of harness my talents, but also a way to like, maybe bolster some of my weaknesses, which, you know, if you're, we're talking about clinical diagnosis is I have all the A's, the DS, the H's, I've got, I've been diagnosed with so many different things. It's, it's just bananas, but But to me, though, that kind of modality never really worked, for me seeing things as disorder, you know, so I kind of tend to think I've got extra energy. And so I find ways to express that energy and channel it. And that's kind of kind of who I am now, I guess.
I love that. I love that. And I totally get that the family man thing I didn't have, we didn't have a child till I was 45 have a 10 year old now. And before that, it was, you know, all music all the time to earn a lot traveling around and and ever since then, I've really, really tried to, to make it so that I'm just here. You know, I have the I have that. Luxury to try to be with my kid as he grows up. And I'm sure that's part of what you're up to.
Yeah, yeah, my wife actually just went back to work. So she stayed at home mom forever. And that's possibly my greatest accomplishment. You know, as entrepreneurs, making them fantastic. Make that happen? You know, it's great. So he's happy about it. So.
So you, as far as I know, tell me if I'm wrong, you were kind of an entrepreneur in more of the marketing space before you turned to what you're doing now. Is that accurate?
Yeah, I had a digital marketing agency called Talk launch, which is probably, you know, that was what, you know, kept the lights on, so to speak. Yeah. But over the years, you know, I've had just a whole string of unsuccessful projects,
to welcome to the club. Yeah.
So, you know, the plan was, you know, when I was transitioning to like, really kind of become an entrepreneur, I had an app idea, and was like, kind of sitting down with some developers about bringing this app to light. And, you know, at the time is probably going to cost a half million, you know, just to have kind of an MVP. And so I kind of thought about, like, you know, I don't really once I have these built, I know they're just gonna send me out the door and on the way, then what do I do? I don't really know. And so that kind of created the business. I was taught launch, which was a business that was based on launching products. And largely in social media marketing, this is kind of in the infancy of digital marketing, like there was no, like, Instagram didn't exist, we're kind of on the heels of MySpace. And I was building websites and figuring out ways that I could help launch products. And really kind of as a sandbox to the projects that I had, you know, I've always had this laundry list of stuff that I wanted to get done. And in kind of, like a shotgun manner, so by working with other entrepreneurs in launching their products, see what works, see what didn't, it was always kind of informing the way I was approaching my projects. So over the years, you know, everything from goods, software, services, brands, entertainment, you know, I kind of categorize all of them and try as methodically as I can to validate and bring those products to life. I think it maybe you can agree with this, too, is like, the more mature I feel as an entrepreneur, the faster I'm able to kind of kill those ideas when they're not working. And maybe, you know, Bill, you've got an experience in music to a big, challenging part of leaving music, which I did in dramatic fashion, I really turned my back on it, but it became kind of an identity component of like, who am I now, if I'm not the music guy that everybody knows me is like a songwriter and, you know, touring professional and stuff like that, you know, who am I? And so wrestling with that and figuring out that, like, Hey, man, there's, there's more to me, and I don't need to wrap my identity around this musician, person. In the same way, you know, entrepreneurs will work on projects, and they're like, I'm this app guy. And if the apps failed, that means I'm failing. You know, and so they hold on and lose money. And more importantly, they lose lots of time, because hey, the app guy can't fail, as opposed to just like allowing the project to fail. I mean, if you're not comfortable with that word, then it could be like, hey, it's just not the right thing at the right time, you know. So kind of figuring out how to do that personally not attached too much to to a project and letting things go is kind of been my career arc.
I love that. Because I think there's a point where we're afraid to do that, you know, you have some idea, and you feel like you have to take it all the way. Even though at some point, you might have this inkling or this thought, or this intuition that no, you know, I probably shouldn't be doing this. But there's so much outside pressure sometimes that, oh, well, you're supposed to take it all the way. And sometimes you just need to stop and do something else.
I think that's one of the hardest things to discern is when that time is because Yeah, absolutely. Especially early on in entrepreneurial growth. You're so so like, everything is so emotional, you're so attached to it. You know, I see, I see people that are they have their first big idea. And they're just like, in love with it, and it's their baby, they say, and how important do you think it is to be objective? And, like, have an objective relationship with ideas? And how do you discern, in your experience, Ryan? Like, when is it time to, quote, give up, and you can replace that word with something more gentle?
Yeah, then it's tough. It's just if you put gut checks in there, it's kind of what I do. Now, I have had the luxury of seeing people make catastrophic mistakes. You know, one thing we are kind of notorious for not notorious for what our specialty in the agency was, was doing crowdfunding campaigns, you know, and we probably did a dozen of them and raised millions of dollars for different products. And through doing that, you you, that's where you really see, like, these are folks that are obsessed, they're all in, they've spent all their money to develop the product. They're getting ready to throw it on Kickstarter, and all they're seeing is dollar signs in their, in their eyes. And, you know, talk to him say, hey, you know, have you asked somebody if they want to buy this? And they're like, why? No, obviously, they will. I'm like, Man, are you sure? You're sure you spent how much and you never tried to sell it? Whoa, you know, so we turned down more projects than than we worked on, largely because there was this like compulsion. And it's a delicate balance because you got to commit, you know, but there's, there's ways you can commit along the way that don't risk everything you've got, you know, so for me, it to stay organized with the projects I'm working on is really important. You know, I use Trello to organize my ideas, you know, where in the columns of Trello, the what's furthest to the left is what I'm working on with most intent, and then kind of trailing all the way down to the very end, which is this idea for like a spinning soap dispenser, in a walk in shower, that I can't give up this idea, it's still there. But I'm not working on it. And largely because it doesn't meet my validation criteria. So like, we're talking about, like, I got a family, you know, so I have to be very careful with my time because I just don't have that much. So, you know, for me to work on a project entrepreneurially it's got to fit like, three criteria first, which is, you know, is it of service? It's important to me that I feel like my work is important to helping people. Is it fun? I mean, everybody loves fun. But me personally, if it's not fun, I'm just generally not going to do it. Because I'm a man of pleasure, I suppose. And then I've written three. Yeah, exactly. And three, it like has to make money. Only because there's so many things that I love to do that don't make money, that I have to be very specific that like, Hey, I'm here, you know, keep the lights on, put food on the table. So it has to make money. So this is kind of how I'm going to organize that Trello board. Now, as we're going through those kind of validations. It's like, okay, this is of service, this is fun. This has got some earning potential, this is great, kind of at last in kind of continuing validation is like, am I the right person to bring this forward? Like, am I the guy, you know, and that's just a gut check. And if you're not, it's like, Man, I don't think right now at this time on the guide to do this, then you got to let it go. So, you know, it's kind of excruciating. Because all of those ideas on that Trello board just end up getting, you know, pushed further to the right, because they don't meet that criteria. But But trying to be really objective, you know, trying to look at this, honestly, he doesn't do all these things, you know, is ultimately going to be what I end up working on. So I don't have to feel like I'm holding all these ideas in my head. That's exhausting. When I just want to be like, okay, cool. Sundays, I know, I'm with my family, I'm with my kids and folding laundry and stuff. I'm not trying to hold six different ideas in my head.
I love what you just said about going through that criteria. And then the last one, which I think may be the most difficult is Am I the person to do this? Yeah, one of the things I end up talking about a lot, you know, you're probably smarter than me, because I never did leave music. Still. But one of the things part of my criteria inside that is, am I the guy? Yeah. Is this going to be fun for me? I can do a lot of things and have I've done just about every job in that business you can think of, but I don't want to. Yeah, they're not fun for me after a while. So am I the guy is this is this it? I actually had somebody asked me the other day, if I would come play a particular show with them. And I thought about it and my guts going, you don't want to do that. I know I can. And it's nice that they asked, you know, when I'm sure they're gonna pay me something, but I don't want to. Yeah, and there was a time where I don't want to wouldn't have been a good enough reason. I would have thought, well, I have to write Yeah, somebody asks when I can, and they're gonna pay me so I have to Well, no, I don't have to. It's not, it doesn't line up for me.
Yeah. And that's a tough one too. Because I I find myself kind of like, wanting people like me, you know. So say saying no, is like tough. You know? What? I'm not the guy for this, you know, so, you know, it is challenging. You know, it will, especially if you're coming from scrappy, humble beginnings, you know, like me, it's like, someone's offered me some cash for something. It's like, Man, I'm jumping on and go do that, you know, but sometimes, you know, you, you know, you trip over dollar picking up a nickel or whatever. You gotta, you gotta be careful, you know, like, with your time, you know, and I think that's where the switch happened for me is that like, you know, money is one thing, but like, you don't get the time back. You know, and that helped me putting away projects that I'd spent a lot of money on, you know, where it's like, Man, I put XYZ into this project. I expect to get a return. It's like, Nah, man, sometimes you gotta, you gotta let it go. You know?
Well, so you had one idea. A while back that seems to be working out really well. You're the founder of Kitt caster, which is a booking agency for podcasting. How did that happen?
Yeah, you know, I've been podcasting forever. It seems like that's how miles met a miles nine that was at from my, my podcast, which started as the Denver business podcast and kind of iterated into the talk launch podcast for the agency. And really, I just interviewed entrepreneurs, founders, CEOs of companies almost as like a lead gen opportunity for the agency. You know, there's trust built into those conversations, and you can get to know their wants and needs. And then if there's a good fit, and you can, you can do that. You can kind of create a relationship together. When I met Myles, I was in a certain phase of the podcast because I've been doing it for 10 plus years. You know, the phase I was in, I was calling it the most romantic podcast business podcast on the internet. So I was meeting people for breakfast and coffee, I would I would meet people in in the, by the lake and lay out a blanket and have mimosas and light a candle. Which is really awkward way. Fantastic to start a brand new conversation with somebody you don't know and be like, Oh, talk to me about your new your fresh raise.
million. I understand. It's like there's two candles going with strawberries? What is it? So? So yeah, that's that's how miles and I met and I got off track. Well, where was I going with this?
Well, just how you got from marketing and pot and your own podcast? Starting kid
kid caster. Okay. Yeah. So as a result of the podcast, our co founder, Brandi Whalen, she had a PR company, and she worked largely with startup founders, funded startup founders and folks like that. And so she would pitch her clients to my podcast, which was great. I was like, Absolutely, let's do it. And so I would interview her clients on the show. And Brandy is just a fantastic person, but also a great networker. And we kind of clicked and so we were getting coffee. And she at the time, I was working on a software project called Career funded. And I was in this kind of process of like, I gotta let this go. It's just, I'm not the guy right now to do this, which was hard, because, you know, I put a year and a half into it. And she's like, well, this to project, what do you want to do? Let's do something, you know, and I was like, okay, yeah, yeah. Yeah. So, you know, because we kind of met through podcasting, we're kind of considering something in that. And so we just threw around ideas until we landed on like, kind of a talent agency for podcasting. Which, which seemed really cool. You know, the product I was working on was kind of a b2c SAS dashboard. She'd been working in software, too. So the idea of having an agency, where the way we scale the company is like, with people, you know, it's old school, it's like, hey, you know, we're gonna, we're gonna get together and create a positive culture and, and create jobs and opportunities for people and, and do the thing. So we kind of sat down and charted out what like, success would look like, we put those gut checks in there like, Hey, man, you know, three months, like, we got it, we have to hit these numbers, this has to happen, are we the right person? And kind of what goes along with that? gut check? If Are we the right person, particularly in a service business is, you know, can we be the best in the world at this? And if it's up to me, there's no other reason for me to do anything. Like I don't want to do something and be mediocre. We're pretty good in the industry, we're at no, we want we want to be number one. And leave no doubt. So that became a part of it too. Like, can we be dominant, the best in the world at this? So as we kind of move through the pilot program, we kept, you know, finding validation and every single opportunity and every time we looked at it, so, you know, and just for your listeners, you know, all we do is we book entrepreneurs on other people's podcasts like this, you know, we if you wanted to be a guest on other people's shows, we'll put you on podcast tour, so to speak. And that's all we do. So, you know, we launched officially in was it September of 2019. We're about two years in and of course, march 2020, everything got shut down, which was kind of auspicious for us. In a way. It's kind of embarrassing to think that we kind of benefit a little bit from the quarantine but as people returned home and started working from home, particularly who we work with funded startup founders, they found themselves without like opportunities to lead you know, because they've got sales marketing or holding down sales. They've got you know, customer success as do an execution. And they're kind of like, in their place will Hey, you know, how do I fit in this package? Well, podcasting began became Like a really great way for them to lead while they were, you know, at home worrying about the future of humanity. So
not long ago, we recorded a podcast. And we talked about shipping our work, and how many things we've started, but failed to finish. We talked about exercising our creative muscle and being consistent. We talked about perfectionism and procrastination. And we both got very real, about how we work and the things about how we work that just don't work. We realize that in order for either one of us to move things forward, we need a container structure boundaries, a clear target, accountability, support, feedback, that inspired us to create the box. So what's the box? The box is a workshop for creatives. It solves problems like unfinished work or lack of sharing, or being able to promote or sell your work on organized action, wasting energy, that lone wolf syndrome going in alone. We're planning on launching this in the first few months of this year. So if you want to move your creative work past, where do you usually stop? Just visit the box workshop.com? And find out more? In the box, you'll finish what you started? Well, you know, I know you say this is all we do. We book people in podcasts, you know, full disclosure as a client of kit caster, which I am, it feels like you do more than that. And one of the things that I really appreciated that I found out early on in speaking with your co founder, Brandy, is that this is not just a software solution. There's people and that you I work with a person there. Yeah. And the money that I pay, pays that person for their time, and actually coming from the entertainment business, the model of what you have, you know, Myles and I try to gently make fun of all of the many marketing programs that we've paid money for all of the many business building and digital marketing things that we've spent money on and been grossly disappointed by. Yeah, and one of the reasons that, that it was honestly kind of easy for me to pull the trigger in working with Kip caster, is that the model makes sense to me coming from the entertainment business, oh, you're, you're a booking agency. I get that. Great. Book me a gig and I will show up and it'll be great. Yeah. It's really, it's super cool.
Yeah, you know, and, and a credit to Myles, his business who's amazing with his marketing and what he does, and, you know, I Miles is like, I love his tear downs of kind of, like, what's icky about marketing? hilarious, but but also, even more, so is I just like, you know, miles your attention to, to how marketing and sales is a beautiful thing. And like how commerce is like kind of a sacred transaction in a way that like, if, if I'm promising this, and you buy it, and I deliver and executed a great way, boy, there's nothing better than that. You know, it's really cool. So you guys do really well, you know, and so for us, that's really important to us, too. Because like you said, Bill, like, our agents are here, you know, there's like six of us here now. But we're all in the States. And we're all you know, real people that care, you know, so
it's not an algorithm that's booking me on shows it's an actual person. Exactly.
It's a person that's qualifying, like the outcomes that you want from podcasting, with these in the conversations you want to have with great opportunities for hosts that are looking for the same thing so that it works out for everybody.
Right, I know that Myles has questions, but I got two things I got to ask him. One is, in what when I go to your profile in kick Kassar, the first thing it says about you is Ryan is an American Buddhist. So we got to talk Buddhism and meditation for a few minutes. With love to most of I would say at this point, half of what I do with my clients is I have become, you know, half meditation teacher and half. Business Coach. Nice. And so that's certainly a big part of my life. I'd love to know how you came to that. I'm assuming that you're a meditator. It'd be weird to put American Buddhist on there if you weren't. Yeah. How did that happen? for you.
Yeah, you know, I think that's probably characteristic of what American Buddhism is it is rooted in contemplative practice, we are actually at odds with the majority of Buddhists around the world, like 25% of them don't meditate at all, you know. So, you know, I kind of put that in my bio, because I do love to talk about it. And I feel like there is an interesting differentiation. If you say, American Buddhist, I'm not exactly sure what that is. But that's kind of what I'm exploring. I think in my I think,
I think you just said it, like it's more based around a contemplative practice than a religion.
Absolutely, yeah. Totally. It's something you do. It's not something you believe. Yeah, you can bring your beliefs to these practices in these kinds of technologies. And it works. Plus, I think, a huge component of American Buddhism and how Americans were introduced to Buddhism, but also Hinduism, is through the counterculture psychedelic movement of the 50s and 60s, you know, where people were blowing their minds on copious amounts of LSD, and kind of opening their heart and opportunities for these spiritual practices. And so they went to the east, you know, and found teachers and found these books and began translating things and bringing them back here, your Alan Watts and Kornfield, and Goldstein and all of them the Jubu, as they call them, right?
Yeah. And Jon Kabat Zinn, yeah, you did mindfulness based stress reduction stress, which is very much an Americanized You're very kind of standardized type of a practice.
Secular. Absolutely, yeah. Very, yeah. Yeah. So probably in so my introduction was in a very same way, you know, in high schools and knucklehead run around doing drugs with a bunch of crazy people, you know? Sure. I remember finding myself as 15 years old and like, is probably two in the morning and I'm sprawled out in this, this river bed behind the church, my parents attended. Now, I was staring at the moon, wondering what the hell I believed, because I was so geeked out on LSD, you know? Interesting gut check there as well. But so through that, you know, kind of the same thing starting to look into these esoteric traditions. And for me, the beginning was 1516 years old was with Taoism. You know, there's something about the doubt a chain, and like the impenetrable, contradictory nature of it, the fact that it starts with, you know, the way that can be spoken is not the true way, which is a hilarious thing, to start a book, which is, like, there's no way I can tell you the truth. So let me just explain it to you for the rest of these pages, you know, but this isn't the thing. I just really liked that and start getting into meditation and yoga techniques, you know, this is kind of before as long before the internet. And you had to go to the dusty used bookstore and you find, you know, these great old books, you know, from God knows where, and then they're tucked in with all this cool beat poetry and like, oh, who would care wack and these guys who's Bill Burroughs and like, so this whole kind of real introduction towards Eastern thought, how it kind of filtered in through the 50s and 60s was kind of my introduction, you know, and so spiritually speaking, I had several lives after that. But it was, it was, again, with kind of psychedelic culture that rekindled a deep passion, you know, four or five years ago, to really take it seriously, you know, and take it seriously in the practice side, you know, what's what's,
what does your practice look like these days.
Um, it's a mixed blend. So it's sitting practice, you know, daily, I'll do at least nine minutes, you know, but up to 50. And then I do a walking practice, that that I really like kind of a walking with breathing techniques. I use, you know, what could be described as mindfulness based stress reduction, you know, just basic Vipassana stuff. But I'll switch modality is dependent on like, kind of how I'm feeling, you know, do some Kundalini stuff, I need to get some stuff move in. And in, in the breathwork stuff, which is probably, you know, it's mindfulness as well. So, you know, I think for me, I'm using the technologies that meditation technologies to focus my energies on being calm and peaceful, and kind of bringing my energy from my brain into my belly, you know, things to kind of calm the fire a little bit Marsley as opposed to maybe spiritual exploration or deeper realms of, of meditation.
So now, did you learn most of these things from books? Did you Have a teacher do you use any apps that are out there? So many apps out there now, some of which are fantastic.
Yeah. All the above all the above the, the positive stuff, boy that goes way back. It's probably like a yoga class that I took at Wild Oats or Whole Foods back in the early 90s. But for a while, I was sitting a lot with the Denver Zen Center. And I think aesthetically, I really like the Zen culture. Largely because it's so it's there like the moraines spiritual world, you know what I mean? Like, there, you go to a beautiful, like Tibetan monastery and there's a 30 foot gold Buddha, you're like, Whoa, right. That's a mate. And they're incense burning everywhere. You know, and you go to a Zen Center, and there's like a little stone Buddha in the corner. And they're like, face the wall. I'll see in an hour. Yeah, exactly. So and their techniques are just like, you know, breathe in, count to one breathe out to get to 10. Do it over. That's it. Yeah. And that's for we'll do see you in 40 years after that. So
that's how I learned to meditate was from a Zen and Taoism class in college. Yeah. And that's pretty much exactly what we did.
Yeah. Yeah. And that's, that's how I started to, I think the confusing thing for me, and maybe it resonates with other people is a lot of times I'd spend thinking, like, Am I doing this? Right? Is this what I'm supposed to be doing? You know, when you get to the end, and you, you, let's say you just dunk in the end zone, it's a lot easier to understand what you're doing going forward. Not to keep bringing up psychedelics, but I feel like that's kind of what it gives you. It gives you the end results, and then it's little nonconsensual. So thank God, it kind of dispels after a while, but you understand that there's a Delta of consciousness capable to you. And you can kind of find these maps that will show you that the terrain you just experienced, you know, and
the great thing is, you almost can't do it wrong. True, if you are if you're sitting in a meditation practice, and let's say you're making a valiant attempt to anchor your attention to your breath. Yeah. And and it's going to feel like you're doing it wrong. Well, you're not. You can't do that wrong. You all you can do is keep showing up. Yep, exactly. And you keep showing up for a while, and then it starts to feel like okay, maybe I am doing something. Yeah, absolutely.
That's why I like the, like, 910 minute sessions where, you know, your brain swirling through the day, and it's like, I can take nine or 10 minutes, any day of the week, just relax. And I'm gonna do this to just calm down.
And you see a immediate benefit, just to bring it back to like your business and the way that you function. Because like myself, like it's so in my head. Like, that's, that's one of my things that I've been working on for a long time Bill knows this really well, because he's helped me get out of my head and into my body. But do you see, like, you know, the kind of that end result like that you speak of is one of those that's so enticing. You're like, clarity around your business or your energy or focus, like, what are you seeing there?
You know, it comes through a lot. And just like patience, I think. And understanding that, like most of the things, I want our process, and I'm thinking of something that's 12 months down the road, well, there's this kind of way to get there. That's from an organizational standpoint, then there's just kind of like my daily work. You know, I sit in front of glowing orange rectangles all day, and do a mix of proactive creative work and reactive work, which is basically coming from emails and slack. And it's amazing what you can accomplish. But there's also kind of a problem baked into this kind of computer work. Which is if I read an email that I interpret as being a little bit off, I might go to 11 like fight or flight goes all the way up to hackles on the back of my neck or coming up red on my face. Totally a natural response, I suppose. Totally natural response, but totally unnecessary. I'm totally safe, you know, but my body is reacting, like, it needs to defend itself. You know? So I, I try and fight against that and admit it's wrong metaphor. I try and harmonize that energy, you know, as best I can. And I find like being calm and going into like my inbox in a manner that's like, okay, I can label that. Like, that's gonna be a little challenging. That's going to be a little challenging and kind of move through it and find some some variability between, you know, I'm totally chill to being like, totally upset, like, it's not a switch, there should be a gradient. And if I can get comfortable in that gradient of emotions, then I can always bring things back down and deescalate and come back to a calm Focus Center. You know, I think what what these practices have taught me is that, like, I'm always going to come back to a calm and peaceful center. But depending on the scenario, in reactive, it might take a year, for me to come back to a calm, centered normal, if I can use those techniques to shorten that to six months, boy, I just saved myself six months, if I use it to do three months, or three minutes, or three seconds, you know, the the benefit in that is is so manifesta it's, it's worth the endeavor, in my opinion, just to, to, and for the people that are around me, and the people that I love is to, to recenter, refocus, be calm, and then kind of the unspoken hidden benefits is you have these insights, you know, that come to you in, in sitting practice that are really cool sometimes, you know, and challenging as well. Yeah.
Well, so I got one other question for him, which is, there's this really interesting sentence in your profile on kid caster, which is Ryan, would like to talk about the role podcast play in healing our alien culture. Tell me more about that, that, like that lights up, my whole brain makes me go. Ooh, I want to know more about that.
Cool. Yeah, you know, maybe it's kind of a, this could be a product of guilt a little bit. Being that being that, you know, we were so early to social media, marketing and such an evangelist of it at such an early place. And now feeling like social medias, kind of vulgar and disgusting. And aspects, not intrinsically, but kind of what it's become it's kind of metastasized a little bit, and I'm being harsh and judgmental. But it certainly seems that way. It seems like culture wasn't really ready for it in the way that I thought it was. But what I
do, it's okay.
What I always loved about podcasting, is it, it it, it plays on people's general decency, and courtesy and polite, you know, to people that are totally opposites come together for a conversation, they're going going to kind of wrestle to find common ground almost instantaneously. It's in, it's in our makeup, you know, we evolved to be social creatures. And so and so we do that, you know, as a society as a global society. I mean, if the pandemic shows us anything, it's like, boy, we're super vulnerable. And these problems are of a global magnitude, you know, where we are, the consequences are really severe, you know, becoming a more peaceful, thoughtful person changing the cultural Milou, from, from a war type culture to a cooperation type culture is absolute necessity. And it's the only way that we're going to fix it, you know, there, we have weapons now. That can obviously destroy the planet. And for a long time, it felt good that we had those weapons were nuclear weapons and through political sanction measures that we could kind of control that we could spank down on people because it's really hard to refine uranium, you know, sure. But in 1015 years, you know, high school kids are going to be able to make a new Coronavirus with the tools they've got with, you know, CRISPR and whatnot. So the the opportunity not to be too heavy here, sorry. But the opportunity to like create severe damage will be democratized to basically we have to trust everyone on planet earth not to do it. I get that, you know, so there's, there's kind of an urgency here, of changing our culture, bringing bringing new narratives to bear so that people have an understanding that it's not us in them, it's like us, we're all in this together, and we got to take care of each other. The only way that we can achieve that is with conversation. It's the only it's the only thing we've got is the only tool we have is to talk to each other. And I know I take it for granted because it's, that's all we do is I work especially me I never shut up. But you know, it's like it's kind of magical that you know, you can vibrate your vocal cords it goes through the air and then goes into your brain and what you were thinking is now what I'm thinking, you know, it's a telekinesis in a way. So, in that aspect, you know, if I'm talking about validation It has to be of service. I feel like this is a great service. You know, and I don't want to. I don't get too heavy on prospects talking about that. But to me, it's important, you know, and if we booked, I think I was running numbers we booked, you know, 2500, something like that podcast last year, imagining the ripple effect that it has from from people talking about their passions and their hopes and their dreams. And, you know, I feel like it's significant.
That's fantastic. And so great answer. Yeah. Wow, I'm with you. Yeah, man. And I can imagine that it's been a journey, because the way that in observing you over the years, the way that you speak about this stuff, and the way that you run your business, it's very, like, from my perspective is very mature. It's very experienced, like you've been through it, you've done all these different things. And now you're at a place where you can say things like that, and you feel so you're 100% behind it, you know, there's no confusion. I mean, maybe some days you have uncertainty like any human, but you believe in it, and it it gives you energy to move forward for towards it. You also said something earlier that I can't get out of my head, and Billy repeated it, which is, that's all we do. We book people on podcasts, that's all we do. And just like the simplicity, like you create conversations, the simplicity behind everything that you've done, is the most attractive thing to me the most interesting to me, because I feel like I'm always, you know, I've created some of that. But I feel like I'm always kind of chasing that. Do you have any insights or stories that have led to your ability to keep things so clear and simple?
Yeah. Well, my bill pointed out, that's actually not totally honest. That's not all we do. Right? Right. But what you find is that if you do everything, you actually do nothing. People have a limited ability to understand, you know, what you do, and I learned that from having a digital marketing agency. So I go, we do product launches, and we do up ad campaigns, we do CPC campaigns, and like it just suddenly, it's like, but I have no idea what that is. But what you can kind of tap into is people's innate desire to help like, hey, what do you do? And it's like, Well, I do this, you know, I sell hot dogs, and they'll be like, Oh, my God, my buddy has a baseball field, he needs a hot dog guy, and then they make the connection, you know. And those that referral business is obviously critical to a young to a young business. So finding simplicity on one, just so you can talk about it is really important. But but also, then you can sell it, you know, there's services, and then there's productized services. And so we have a productized service, which is a service you buy as a product, you know, so it's not that you're hiring us as virtual assistant or something like that. Rather, it's like this, you're going to purchase three podcasts per month for six months. And this is what the program looks like. And you can kind of walk through that. And it's just, it's, it's kind of a sales trigger to be able to hold somebody's attention and really get it. You know, so if I can tell somebody like, hey, you know, how there's podcasts, there's guests, well, we booked the guests on the podcast, you know, and if we keep it simple as that you can kind of see the lights go off, like, oh, so like you book people on podcast? It's like, yes, yes, we do that. And that's, and that's all we do. We keep it clear that way, also, so we can have relationships with other podcast agencies. So if I say I'm a podcast agents, things think, Oh, you make podcasts? And it's like, well, no, we don't do that. So. But we have relationships with people that do that very, very well. So that if people are like, I don't know what you do, but you're the podcast guy. Fair enough. That's cool. Yet podcast questions come to me, if it's not in our wheelhouse, will kind of build those relationships with our partners. So. So by staying in our lane and only doing podcast booking, then it creates opportunities for us to work with podcasts, agencies, for PR agencies, for digital agencies and make those relationships. But, you know, for our clients, you know, again, I've always got a bunch of ideas. We're always working on new ways that we can help them and problems that may arise are solutions that we have of like, they're asking for products. They're asking for services, and how can we kind of weave those into our, our product line without diluting the simplicity and the core offer that we have? So always start out saying all we do is book people on podcast because that's our core core offered that we're really committed to.
And I can imagine, gosh, that's so cool. I can imagine with that simplicity and Almost like, you know, repetition, like the product is the same. Generally speaking, of course, there's like a personal touch, and all that it's a, it's a really intimate service from what I've heard. But it's the same process. And so that probably allows you to evolve. And, you know, pick it apart and just continue to grow and get better and better, instead of like reinventing it every time and adding all these new things in which I think a lot of people that I've seen, including myself get caught up in, is we do it the opposite. Like, we tend to offer all these different things and have no clarity, no simplicity. And never get to a point where we can say, We booked people on podcasts, because they, they're just getting in their own way. So it's really, it's really interesting hearing you talk about it, it's it's bringing me a lot of clarity around how important that is for a business.
Yeah, yeah. And I think for to scale, like a service business, you really have to, you know, so that way you can you have firm expectations. And even with like the simplicity that is our offer, there's, there's a lot of like, clarifying, you know, of exactly what that is, but you can hone that and refine it, because you're doing the same thing over and over and over and over, all the processes become really solidified. And if you're scaling in a service capacity, then you have to have people you know, and we've got 18 employees now, which is which is wild, and but you can start to differentiate where it's like, Okay, we have all these podcast agents. And, you know, the leadership component is to keep them happy, you know, like, all you guys are gonna do is book podcasts, and then the calendar invitations and some of the administrative work, we can hire somebody for that. For the sales, business Dev, we can hire somebody for that. So we create kind of differentiation between the teams. So everyone can be 100% focused in what they're doing, and confident that they're delivering the expectations and everybody understands what everybody's doing. So you know, it's like it Greg Hickman speaks really great on this. He's, he's with a company called alt agency now. But but he's really big about like, honing in the craft, which is again really hard. Because if someone's like, do you do this, and they have a fistful of money, or like, Yes, I do, it turns out, but sometimes turning away that money in just taking a chunk, because you do one thing really well is the best thing you can you can possibly do. So he talks about, like having one offer, for one person, advertise it in one place for one year. You know, like, as a discipline, like, I know, you're gonna want to do all this stuff, and you're gonna want to help everybody, but stick to this one thing and see what happens. And when I really started doing that, it helped. It was like, Oh, look, I have clarity that these are the people we're going for with this. And we know their objections are these and we have these solutions. So that's been really helpful for me. But it's also very challenging in service based businesses, because there's, especially in digital services, because now it's like, oh, well, what's our web 3.0 strategy? And how are we going to bring in FTEs? To our work and right, do all this stuff? Yeah. So
I love that you just came all the way back around to saying no, and we just talked about that earlier. You know, it's like, just because you can do something doesn't mean you should. And I think that's so big, it may be bigger than we give it credit for, especially for people who maybe are at the start of their entrepreneurial journey, or are in the midst of it, or haven't really found the thing for them or transitioning from something that worked and trying to get to the next thing is I think most of the people I know, can do a lot of different things. God, what do you actually want to do? What lights you up? And what if that's the only thing that you took? And you just said no to everything else? Yeah, I know, for me, every time I do that, it works better. You just said the same thing. I think Myles is in the midst of figuring out the same thing for himself. Yeah, really
great. You know, and maybe the contemplative practice helps with that, too. You know, because saying no to a big fat check real hard. You got to work up to that. You know, for me, when I really started on the no journey of like, man, Ryan, like, you just your pleaser, you know, you'll just, you'll say yes, just because you don't want someone to feel bad. So we have to start practicing this you know, for me, it just became Sunday's that like on Sundays. I'm not doing anything, and by not doing anything, what I'm doing is meal prep, and I'm doing the laundry and I'm getting the yard work done. And I'm going to the park with my kids, I'm just being domestic at home. And that's what I'm going to do. And committing to it, you know, which was really hard in the beginning, you know, because, you know, my mom needs a hand, I want to help her. You know, people want to go do something fun, I want to do it, you know, but it's like, no, what I'm gonna do is I'm just going to honor this, this one decision to take care of 50 decisions. I don't have to think about anything all I think it's just like, oh, man, Sunday. I'm stack man. What's up with Tuesday? You know? So just like finding small chunks, you know? If if no is the thing that people are working on? Like, there's ways that you can say no, in a small way that like, by the time you're like, man, maybe I gotta pass on a big check. You're you've built up a little stamina. Yeah, that you can do? I don't know.
I love that.
Yeah, wow. decision fatigue is has been such a problem for, for a lot of people, because there's just so many decisions to make nowadays. And that's so cool that you, how can you find one decision to make 50 decisions, or get rid of 50 decisions? Awesome. freeing up your energy freeing up your time?
Totally. I just read this great book, it's called 4000 weeks. And it's all about that. It's about it's kind of about the, you know, unsatisfied or unsavory kind of productivity culture. And facing the fact that like, you know, the FOMO aspect, like, when you commit to doing something, you're gonna miss out on a lot of stuff, you're not going to get it all done, you know, you're just not. So it was kind of gratifying it to read the book. Because I'm, you know, productivity psychopath as well. But what he was saying was real true is that like, you know, you can you can mourn the time you're losing. Or you can use that kind of as an experiment to refine and accept that, like, there's consequences for the time you're spending, you know, at least tasted a little bit and hopefully that influences your decisions. Maybe, at least for me
that's so cool. I'm gonna have to give that a read.
It's pretty good. He was on his on on Ferris recently, or something like that. Oh, cool.
Okay, yeah. So as we kind of bring this to a landing what does the future hold? I mean, we know you're generally like your vision your passion behind this What are you excited about in like the the now in the near future? You know, with Kay caster, is there anything else that you're working on on the side? Any kind of passion projects? What's What are you excited about? For the near future?
Yeah, you know, kick casters really rolling. We have, you know, for directors, they're doing awesome. helping them grow and build a company is I'm really excited about that. I started getting back in the studio and recording some music. So after like, a 10 year 15 year hiatus, that's felt really great. buddy of mine spent three years building a recording studio, down here in Denver, so he kind of called me up and was like, Hey, man, I need you to come in here and record some stuff because I need to hear the room. You know, I was like, Oh, it's so
cool. What do you play?
I play guitar and sing. That's awesome. Yeah. Yeah. That makes
that makes three of us. Yeah, absolutely. Cool.
It's It's been fun. You know, I I kind of poked it, poked it a little bit and some music popped out as I Okay. Well, let's go. It was fun.
Yeah, that means I don't have to give you a hard time about turning away from music. So I was I was keyed up to do that by the end of the ship. So
no, I appreciate that. I deserve it. I mean, there was a time where I was like, you know, saying things like, I used to be a musician, and it just felt like a dagger in my heart. Oh, used to be Oh, yeah, that hurts. Ouch. Yeah. So hopefully I can I can do away with that and have some fun with it. At least. Well, I
hope you'll let us hear it when you get something you're happy with.
I'll do it for sure. Yeah, yeah. Cool. Well, well,
I can't thank you enough for joining us. I know that you probably want people to know about kit casters. So if you don't know about it, go to kick. caster.com. And you know, I won't give it too big a plug. But I'm happy quiet. So
nice. No, that makes me read that. Yeah, that makes me feel great. Bill. I appreciate it. And is wonderful to be on on the podcast. You know, I think we scheduled six weeks to go and seem so far in the future, and I was like, oh,
yeah, that's here. Before you know, grandly Well, hopefully, we can get you back one of these times. And we'll keep our conversation going. And thanks again.
We'd love to thanks, guys appreciate it
Hey, thanks for listening today, miles, can you believe people actually listen to this stuff? No. Well, if you liked it, and you want to know more, you can go to Wait, where did they go?
It's let me try that again. Subtle Art of not yelling.com
Subtle Art of not yelling.com does not have a B,
there's a hidden beast somewhere. I think it's, I think it's actually pronounced subtool people's
art of not yelling, so you can go there. And when you're there, you can leave a review. You can send us a voice message, which is kind of cool. You can get on our email list. Find out more about what great and awesome people we are. And, man, I guess I guess we'll just see you next time.