How I created Britain’s Number 1 Business Podcast — learn how to start, record, produce, edit, get sponsors and market yours. A user’s guide.

How I created Britain’s Number 1 Business Podcast — learn how to start, record, produce, edit, get sponsors and market yours. A user’s guide.

This week, I realised a dream I visualised a few years ago — Secret Leaders, a side project I did for fun with a friend, Rich Martell, became the number 1 Business Podcast in the UK, overtaking Tim Ferris, Gary Vee, Tim Robbins, TED, the BBC and more. This post is to transparently tell you exactly how we did it, what we use, and ensure that if you want to start a Podcast too, you can just copy and paste most of the info for yourself.

About 4 years ago, we decided to sit down with some of our friends to record some podcast interviews, and so Secret Leaders was born. The gap, we figured, when listening to typical business interviews, was that they all seemed pretty serious, and whilst we wanted to ask tough questions, we wanted to create something fun and engaging with good light moments of humour too. They also always talked so eagerly about success and rarely about the tough moments and guest’s mental health — the more emotional side, which as entrepreneurs ourselves, we knew was the real truth.

The real reason for writing this post is that this is the most common invitation request I get on Linkedin:

Now don’t get me wrong, I love coffee, and I love company, but I realised if everyone wants to know the same stuff, it simply doesn’t make sense for me to regurgitate it on repeat when what would be more helpful is real detail, with strategy, links to buy things, people to hire, & software to use. One can only speak from experience, this is ours, I hope it’s helpful. If it is — please share it.

Start Small, Improve Stuff Over Time

So maybe you aren’t like me, and you want to go big immediately. In that case, skip to the later part of this article with the more fancy equipment. However, when I started Secret Leaders, I had no idea if it was going to be a worthy investment of my time, so how could I assume it would be a worthy investment of money? That’s why I started small and simple.

My belief is it’s always better to have a partner, so I got my friend Rich Martell to do it with me 50–50. I do all guests, recording, research, interviews & marketing, if he sorts production and editing. It was a good deal for both of us as it played to both our strengths.

A great podcast comprises of 3 things.

  1. Research from the host
  2. Decent recording equipment. That means not just recording off your phone,
  3. Decent production on things like show notes, editing etc

For full transparency here were our costs in Series 1, 2, 3 and 4.

Series 1: £300–2 Microphones & a small budget on some transcribing software. No marketing spend, just my social media. It was a test and I wanted to see how it would go, plus I couldn’t afford the investment & had no sponsors (and no clue).

Series 2: £8,000 — A big jump indeed but we raised sponsorship after the numbers from Series 1, and decided to work with an editor (Lower Street Media) for post production, which was absolutely worth every penny (just listen to the difference in quality between the first 15 episodes and the second 15!)

Series 3: £12,000 — We invested in some more production quality, bought our own equipment, got a visual designer to finally give us an identity, invested more heavily in transcriptions/show notes, etc.

Series 4: £39,000 — We spend £10k on production with Lower Street to produce 15 episodes, £5,000 on 5 Live events, £24,000 on marketing and PR with our friend, Hannah Russell, who we’ve known since before she started Mags Creative, a podcast specialist company, so it’s been an honour for us to invest in a friend’s new company, backing her, and clearly she’d delivered the goods so everyone is a winner!

We also upped the budget for design from Kristina Katz, to continue giving our podcast a distinctive look and feel, which led to this on launch day.

This Post Is Split Into 5 Parts To Try And Simplify.

Research, Recording, Production, Sponsorship & Marketing.

PART 1: Research.

Wikipedia, Quora, previous interviews they’ve done are the obvious routes here. If it’s business, what their company has done, and why.

That statement above (which he said in our chat for Series 3), is absurd. All I did was about an hour of research on wikipedia and stuff that was easy to find, and this was someone on a PR tour having tons of recipes! Put the work in, it impresses the guests, it’s worth it!

You need a clear direction for what you want the tone to be — figuring out who is listening and why they care.

In my case, I am irreverent, cheeky, willing to ask hard questions and always wanted to listen to business tips with a laugh and find something less dry and serious than what was out there, so I knew I could be myself.

I always send interviews to guests in advance, in a recent interview with Alain De Botton, the founder of the School of Life, he was particularly appreciative that I had taken the time to share in advance, because he was able to explain before what was out of bounds, which made a more comfortable and better rapport in the studio together to get a great interview.

PART 2: Recording.

In Series 1 this was literally my entire kit and plan, step by step.

  1. Buying a perfectly good microphone, the Yeti. It’s £120 on Amazon.
  2. Plug that into my laptop. Use Quicktime to record.
  3. Book any old meeting room I could find in my shared office.
  4. Invite guest. In Series 1, these were basically my friends, investors or anyone it was easy to get in front of/call a favour in for.
  5. Get feedback from people and listen to it. In Series 1, I interrupted guests and ruined the flow a lot. I heard that myself but also got that feedback from people regularly — it was clearly unprofessional and just ruined what could have been better content. For Series 2 (and onwards) I learned to ask a question and shut up and listen. And it’s so much better.

There’s Michael Acton Smith of Calm.com and Mind Candy who luckily I was already friends with — and Calm was just starting to gain some initial traction. His interview was brilliant, raw, open, and everything that he is well known for — full of humility, insight and humour. Sometimes setting and equipment don’t matter, its an experiment after all. Start small.

As you can see, I really had no clue what I was doing — that microphone is WAY too far away from the guest, just like this one with Pete Finlay on his houseboat — but the flexibility and simplicity made every interview feel easy to sort out. However, the quality of all our Series 1 episodes is clearly way lower than it could have been for simple things like that, which was disappointing

By the end of Series 1, we had 25,000 downloads. I thought that was good enough to use as a metric to go and get some sponsors. If I had sponsors, I could afford some help on production, and to record in a studio. So we raised money to cover the costs of booking a studio in Old Street. Suddenly we had better equipment, and recording in a sound proof room was genuinely an enormous upgrade worth considering. It had it’s downsides though — getting high profile guests (this is Nick Wheeler from Charles Tyrwhitt shirts) to come to a studio rather than you going to them made scheduling more difficult.

As we used the studio equipment, I don’t have much technical insight for recording upgrades here so I’m gonna skip straight to Series 3, where I decided that being able to go to guests was going to improve my ability to secure excellent ones. However, keeping to a really high recording standard isn’t always easy, and sometimes the studio was booked. This would lead to hilarious situations like me having to record emergency ‘intros and outros’ in the only place I could make ‘sound-proofed’. Under my covers at home. Yes I felt ridiculous, but it’s good to show people that it’s not all quite as smooth as people might let on. There I am with my BFF, the Yeti. Romantic.

Series 3 Equipment: (all in, £540 for amazing kit!)

  1. Zoom H6 Handy Recorder (this is already £100+ cheaper than when I bought it) £259
  2. 2 x Shure FM58 Microphone with case (£108, already £40 cheaper than when I bought)
  3. 2x Microphone Stand (£9.99 each)
  4. 2x Microphone Pop Filter (£6.99 each)
  5. 2x XLR Cables (recommended 3m for £6.99)
  6. SD Card — (128 MB is a good investment at £21.59)
  7. Phone Mount Kit (for photos etc) £15
  8. Rode Phone Microphone (£38)
  9. Sennheiser Headphones (You need to hear if levels are good whilst recording) £45
  10. AA Batteries — Always keep spares! (£6.25)

In Series 3, I went to almost all the guests, barely anything recorded in a studio, and the sound quality didn’t suffered much, but it was a HUGE faff. It’s a lot of stress having to set this stuff up (even though it may not look like it), and I had to do most of it without Rich, as a lot of them were recorded in America or at times he couldn’t join.

It was great to learn how to do it all myself, a worthwhile exercise but it is hard to set up, check levels, do tests, make sure there are no problems during recording, take photos, be natural, ask interesting questions etc all at the same time.

Like, really hard. It definitely took some time to get into. I gave myself 30 minutes early with every guest to set up and prepare everything.

And even then, I buggered up something simple like a photo together, so this is literally the best one I have with me and Clara Brenner in San Francisco! My arm looks good though. 🤣

“This is how big Secret Leaders could be one day, Jason. We’ll overtake you AND Tim Ferris”

The best scenario, is your guest has their own studio, like angel investor extraordinaire Jason Calacanis.

The worst, is when you bring your own equipment and you have to record in a warehouse basement, like with Tim Brown from Allbirds…. Pretty professional.

Though there were times where our editor from Lower Street, was in London, and was a little nervous I’d bugger up the sound quality so he came with some all singing all dancing equipment to save the day like with Jo Malone….

One of the main lessons I have about recording is to get comfortable with a changing environment and equipment, because frankly, it really helps to be able to adapt to your guest’s needs. In my opinion the most valuable part of the podcast is insight from guests/what your guests need to hear so optimise for that first and everything else after. Even if you only do intros and outros in a studio (or under your covers) that’s fine.

Just listen to Tim Ferris — those are mostly phone calls! I know, I know, who’s Tim Ferris. He’s the number 2 business podcaster in the UK, guys. (Still cant believe I can say that!)

In Series 4, we’ve released a mix of the recordings from our Live Events, and studio sessions. What’s been especially different for us in Series 4, is that the show had gained enough notoriety by the end of Series 3 that we were able to be really selective about guests — we had the likes of Cal Henderson of Slack, Will Shu of Deliveroo and the founders of Fab Fit Fun (an LA based Unicorn company) all come in as inbounds amazingly (via their PR companies).

As a result, all of the in person interviews were done in my studio in Soho, right underneath my office for my startup, Heights, which has made it all so much easier for me, time wise, because as much as I love this, it’s a side hustle, we do it for free, for fun, and my startup is and will always be my priority so I’ve now become specific that guests need to come to me. You can only really do that when you reach a certain size, of course.

Long story short no more equipment expense required.

PART 3: Production & Editing

I asked Rich to contribute to this section so here’s what we’ve used straight from the expert:

  1. Garageband software and learning how to set up levels for recording, we learned from watching youtube videos
  2. Simplecast for distributing the content via an RSS feed
  3. Sonix tool for transcribing. Rev.com is also good.
  4. Squarespace for website (2nd season)
  5. Audio Jungle to find music aka a jingle. We used Fiverr in Series 1. You can tell.
  6. LibSyn for distributing to Spotify (a different type of RSS feed and a bit more tricky to get set up)

Editing

For every 1 hour of recorded time factor in for 5 to 6 hours of editing. About 25% of recording is cut out. Then you need to put in the music, intro, outros, ads — all done through Garageband.

To start with Rich was doing the majority of this himself transcribing the audio and editing the episode. Now the editing time is outsourced to Lower Street and the transcribing is done by a tool called Sonix. Rich provides the sound editors on Google Drive with 1) the audio file and 2) the sonix file to be stitched together. The sound editor works on a few at the same time.

For our live events, we hired professional recording people, to set up a stage, and make sure the feeds on the microphone come through perfectly. We then edit these in post production, with me recording new intros and outros to those episodes so they make more contextual sense to our audience listening, than the intros we do in person at the events.

It takes on average 15 minutes per episode to get the intro and outro to a standard where we’re happy — which means a lot of repetitive and annoying repeats of the same sentences!

Part 4. Sponsorship

There are many ways to sort this out, to be honest, you have to what’s right for you. Rich and I are full time Co-Founders of our own businesses, so we have no desire/need to get paid from Podcasting, as such, we do what’s right for us, our audience, and our intention. In this instance — it’s to put out a brilliant show with brilliant guests and inform, educate and delight fans.

We want to make the UK’s number 1 business Podcast (number 2 as I write this update!) however… we work backwards in small increments figuring out how to improve each Series little by little instead of going nuts instantly. We don’t make promises we can’t keep to sponsors and we offer very good value, in line with keeping things easy for us.

Series 1 had 0 sponsors, we were trying to get some data so we could a) see if it was popular/interesting and b) have info for potential sponsors for a second series. For us it was essential to have relevant contextual advertisers. It’s a business podcast so we don’t want ads from Vodafone or whoever, which happens if you go on an advertiser network (another approach).

In my view, the best way to get sponsors is to provide great value to people you trust and have an existing relationship with. As we are both entrepreneurs, this was considerably easier for us as we went to people we’ve done business with in the past, or clients. Series 2 had La Fosse Associates (recruiters we’ve both used many times), Calm (founders are friends of ours), and Kontor (who I’ve used to find office space).

We offered all of them a really good deal for the numbers we had (and were predicting) so there was little negotiation, however with La Fosse — we were really interested in their 10,000 person database of hiring managers at companies, and their in-house marketing and video team, so we did a half cash half marketing support deal with them instead, which made more sense to us cos it was never about the money, it’s about the reach — so any help we can get is perfect. They also offered to help us out for the 3 Live events we wanted to test.

“How to sell to your competitor, the untold before story of Moonpig selling to Photobox, with both founders”

For Series 3, we brought La Fosse back. They were great to work with, received direct value, & after our Live events had sold out we wanted to scale them bigger & put on 5 in 2019 without having a heart attack, so having them support us with video production of these was essential for us.

We brought in a new flagship sponsor, Hubble, who’s founder, Tushar I am very close with and offered a deal that was very reasonable for both sides. However, this time, as the third sponsor, I have my own company, Heights, on the basis that it’s a brand new startup, needs all the support it can get, and if my time = money, it seemed a fair trade off (plus, most importantly it’s contextually relevant and on brand for our audience, or I simply wouldn’t do it).

For transparency, in total we’ve raised £127,000 across 4 Series so where we’ve got to for a side project in terms of results is actually something we are very proud of as it’s a very lean project.

That’s 0 in Series 1, £23k for Series 2 and £35k for Series 3, £69k for Series 4.

For Series 2 we got the guests to record their own ads.

After feedback, for Series 3, I read the ads out myself for better conversion, and that worked, so we continued that for Series 4.

For transparency, with Series 4 I charged;

  • £30,000 Gold (1st sponsor)
  • £20,000 Silver (2nd sponsor)
  • £15,000 Bronze (3rd Sponsor)
  • The caveat being that all sponsors had to also purchase a certain number of tickets for our upcoming live events (at half price) which meant that we had £4,000 to put on our series of 5 shows we have planned in 2020, without having to stress about ticket sales to make sure they wash their face.

When it came to finding sponsors for Series 4, I didn’t have the time to pitch many people, at all, because I was deep into product development for Heights. I decided to be extremely strategic about it.

I was a Pleo customer already, and I was choosing a CRM for Heights, for Email, marketing automation, etc. So I simply pitched the companies in the space that I was going to be using as a legitimate customer, as I explained I’d only feel comfortable advertising a product I used. That was not only true, but worked a treat.

I was looking into Klaviyo to replace Mailchimp as I needed much more tech than Mailchimp could handle, and it was a quick decision for both of us — no nonsense negotiating, just a good partnership where everything fit.

Once again, La Fosse joined up having received value from the last 2 series. I did of course want to keep my old sponsors in an ideal world — but I had to increase the sponsorship pricing to reflect our growth, and understandably it was out of their reach. At the end of the day, we run it as non profit but we need to be commercial — we have ambitions and we need to scale up, and it takes money to get there.

What is worth noting is that we raised more than double the entire budget from Series 1–3, in Series 4 alone.

It also only took my one week from start to finish with some emails and Linkedin messages to get the deal opened and closed. It was the first time I put the effort into creating a sponsorship deck, and I think it was worthwhile.

I also made it clear I wasn’t into negotiating on price — the price was the price and it was a yes or no scenario because it’s not my full time job so I didn’t have time to discuss it. The fact that this was the truth, made things nice and simple — advertisers knew what they were getting.

If you’re looking for inspiration, here’s our Sponsorship Deck for you to use as you see fit.

Part 5. Marketing and Distribution

As a side project, it’s been our strategy from Day 1 to try to optimise organic reach. That means we needed either guests with well known companies/big names/large audiences for marketing — as we had £0 budget.

Our plan eventually is to be able to record less well-known guests with absolutely amazing stories (aka real secret leaders too), once we have subscribers and our own audience.

We decided we wouldn’t do a totally regular broadcast, instead we would do 15 episodes a series, recorded over around 9 months (so as not to stress ourselves out), and to release about 1 series a year, over 4 months with regularity, taking time to reflect on how to improve between seasons and having some acknowledgment for life-stage commitments.

There are many pros and cons to this approach.

Pros:

  1. Enables you to be strategic and focused on the goal for each series
  2. Gives proper time for feedback from guests, audiences and each other on how to incrementally improve.
  3. Allows proper time to source amazing guests — people are busy, and getting them on your schedule in a 12 month period is very hard. However this means we have people lined up for Series 4 who simply couldn’t make Series 3 but in principle have said yes.
  4. Creates a dedicated structure and a natural break for the founders to discuss ongoing commitments and changes. This time round, Rich couldn’t commit as much time due to a bunch of personal and work commitments, and because we had that chat up front, we knew what deliverables we had against what timeline for Series 3. In Series 4 we made it simple — the one’s Rich could make, he’d come to, the ones he couldn’t, we wouldn’t stress — our focus was really on getting the guests.
  5. Allows you to promote and do marketing in a planned and well organised manner.
  6. The App store actually works well with spikes — so if you disappear for ages and then plan a good launch, the spike and surge of interest does you wonders for getting noticed by them.

Cons

  1. Once guests are hooked on a show, for 4 months straight, cutting it for the next 8 is fairly painful, you get worried if they’ll come back. In our experience, they absolutely do and distance makes the heart grow fonder, but it’s an issue for sure. That being said, with the first episode in Series 4 getting a homepage feature on Apple, and number 1 spot in the business chart, it turns out it’s not such a stress after all.
  2. You enable time for copycats to pick up where you left off.
  3. You cant strike quite as punchy sponsorship deals, and some sponsors are only interested in certain periods, so if you aren’t on air during those, you lose them (this happened to us)

Series 1

So, for Series 1 we relied on our network, and accessibility to interesting people and encouraged them to share the episodes on their own channels (easier said than done). We would create tweets, instagram and linkedin posts with the right tags & links for them to share. Not all of them did it, but the ones that did, helped us reach decent audiences. This interview with Prince Andrew at Buckingham Palace was shared by his team on social, which at the time (4 years ago) was very helpful as a halo effect to get on othre guests — arguably, less so now! ✌️

Series 2

Having taken in sponsorship, we decided to invest in production and use what was left for marketing. We put a call out on Instagram and Linkedin for a social media intern, and one listener in Canada applied very enthusiastically (Jennifer Osman), and worked with us for 2 series. She was full time employed and did this as a side project herself, to learn, which is exactly the type of person we likde to work with. She was responsible for setting us up for SEO/Adwords and starting some social media spend (£500 per episode in testing).

The reality though was it required too much feedback from us back and forth and in the end became a distraction so we had to cut ties, so we could work with someone in the UK who would be far more focused at making this work for us — which ultimately was the right decision, for once we had grown big enough to make that call. However we can’t underestimate the help in having passionate fans help you in the early stages when you have no budget — so we’re forever grateful!

Knowing video is far more optimised and engaging — we created trailers like these for every episode.

We also did some advertising testing on various podcast players (like overcast). We were optimising for subscribers primarily but also episode listens and downloads. Apart from glamour metrics (like reach, views, etc), Podcast advertising was the most expensive but also the most ROI. The worst, for what it’s worth, was Linkedin, in our experience.

We knew that lots of people discover Podcasts through PR and lists, so we decided to test LIVE events, which could break even if we sold half the tickets roughly and gave half away to influential people and journalists that might not have come across the podcast. We made sure to pick great topics, and bring together guests that would be interesting to record and even more interesting for the live audiences.

This has been an evolving strategy but definitely a valuable one, and the content created at these has been brilliant — we decided to hold back on releasing them, so we can do it all in one go — meaning half of Series 4 are live recordings bringing together awesome guests. On average, for proper production and venue hire etc you should budget about £1,000 (and then around that for editing and production to turn it into a high quality audio product).

This event is the first we’ve released in our 4th Series, as episode 2.

Our first live event (with the founders of Shazam and Blippar, Jess Butcher and Dhiraj Mukherjee for the launch of Series 2) had 65 guests. The second with Michael Acton Smith of Calm and Ali Parsa had 100. Jo Malone and Justine Roberts had 150, here’s a trailer for that one.

Then we started to consistently get 200 people for events like International Women’s Day with Renee Elliot, Alex Depledge, Reshma Sohoni, and Alicia Navarro, but we decided that the audio quality suffered from those bigger rooms.

We tried to focus the live events on bringing together guests with either completely different takes on the topic in discussion, (for example we brought Anne Boden of Starling Bank, who raised £45m seed to start a bank and David Buttress of Just Eat who IPO’d it for over £1bn together to provide really different insights on the funding and financing journey.

Another example of unique content was us bringing the Co Founder of LoveFilm, William Reeve together with VC maestro, Simon Cook, the founder and CEO of Draper Esprit, to discuss “Both Sides Of The Table” as they worked together on the LoveFilm exit to Amazon.

We have since scaled it back down to 140 capacity at another venue, as we just did last week with our Series 4 launch event with Rishi Khosla of Unicorn Bank Oak North, and Julian Hearn of rocketship scaleup, Huel.

“Try to look really professional without looking like idiots guys. OK nevermind.”

Series 2 grew really quickly and by the end of it we were at 125,000 subscribers which we were really chuffed with and over 1 million downloads. We had been featured on the Acast app store, topped the Spotify business podcast list and most importantly, had a great time doing it, learning from great people and asking for cheeky requests whenever we could, like getting Rankin, the world’s most famous (and expensive) portrait photographer to take our photo right after an interview!

However because we are totally part time, simple things like social media, ratings and reviews, etc, have all suffered because we had to focus on what mattered (listeners & subscribers) and we agreed vanity metrics were secondary.

Upgraded design so we have a look and feel that’s our own.

We launched Series 3 on Jan 30th 2018, and this time, we invested in changing (or rather, creating) a visual identity with an amazing designer, Kristina Katz of Smartup Visuals, and our major change is creating a slick look and feel that is consistent, and can be used for Live events, cover art, episode work, video trailers and more.

And of course as we continue to grow in size and confidence, our requests get cheekier. So big shout out to Series 3 Episode 1 guest, Damian Bradfield of WeTransfer who donated none other than the WeTransfer homepage to us to launch the third series, for free! 🤯 ❤️

The other thing we did and continue to do is create episode artwork for every guest to share on social. We learned that the videos were great for us, but the guests never shared them, as they’d have to download a video and upload it to social — and they are busy people. It just never happened. However the theory was that with bespoke episode artwork, they might, and is a worthy asset and investment — but being totally honest — they still tend not to.

As the host, you can only ask your guests to share their episodes, and of course, you really hope they do, and want to, but in total I think less than half of the guests I’ve interviewed have actually even managed a retweet. It’s disappointing — but it’s the truth — and this article is all about committing to the truth — so lets hope it picks up in series 4.

In Series 3, instead of creating a marketing budget, we’ve put it into a PR budget, to see if that is a more effective method. We put out an “RFP” — (request for proposal), and hired Munch PR to handle our comms.

We got a few hits, but the truth of the matter is — if you search “Secret Leaders” on google, you don’t see any of those articles. All in all, it was a mistake, we spent £18,000 on PR and frankly, have virtually nothing to show for it. You live, you learn, and we iterated this choice for Series 4, so all in all it was a good lesson.

By Series 3, we had our 5 Live events already set up and organised, same again for Series 4.

As the old adage goes — “Fail to plan, plan to fail”. We even hire people for the events to do the heavy lifting, finally, making them exponentially more enjoyable!

A great hack, or way to get guests introducing you to more excellent guests is to give them added value. If they are decent, interesting people then it makes sense to connect them, as you never know, and they never know, where that might lead. So it makes sense to try to bring them together to meet #IRL. So every Series we host a dinner to bring them together, on average 15 guests come. We invite a sponsor to join us for dinner, who picks up the tab, and makes amazing connections.

An outrageously deep and personal account of mental health and entrepreneurship

One more point on the long term view of Live Events. We believe that long term, the consistency will get the right journalists to our events, and eventually they will want to cover us. Well, that never really happened frankly, but unbeknown to us, at our recording for World Mental Health Day with Mills of UsTwo and Damian Bradfield of WeTransfer, we did get someone from Apple in the audience.. and when we launched Series 4, we were promoted in the main banner on the homepage. It took, by that point, 8 Live Events — but something good and worthwhile finally came out of it!

Series 4 Marketing:

I wanted to make a note on this as we’ve ditched our PR agency and as I mentioned earlier, gone with the brilliant Mags Creative. Our budget has gone split into running host read ads in similar shows, and we recorded our own ad for the first time to place across the business category.

On top of that, they are negotiating ‘shout out for shout out’ type swaps, so we will see if there’s any uplift there… but so far so good.

In Summary

We hope this has been a useful resource, sharing our journey across 3 complete series and just coming into what is our biggest and best yet, series 4.

Our aim is very clear — we want to be Britain’s number 1 business/entrepreneurship podcast, and do it on a shoestring by creating value for guests and listeners wherever we can.

Hopefully if you are reading this there’s been enough take home tangible value for you to use as a guide to start your own Podcast, or just improve the one you already have.

Above anything else, I’ve got to have the pleasure of meeting inspirations to me like Martha Lane Fox, Sherry Coutou, Alain De Botton, and Jo Malone.

But better yet, I’ve become really good friends with a bunch of great guests like Nick Jenkins (Moonpig), Graham Hobson (Photobox), Alice Bentinck (Entrepreneur First), Anne Marie Huby, (Just Giving) Alex Depledge (Resi), Mills (UsTwo), Damian Bradfield (WeTransfer), Michael Acton Smith (Calm), Ali Parsa (Babylon) and a bunch more.

If that’s not a good reason to start a podcast, to get to meet people who inspire you, and if there’s chemistry — connect with them (and if not, don’t bug them!)

If it has been useful or helpful, please do share it with others — it’s taken a lot of time to write, and the idea is to help people start their own with a bit of a roadmap.

If you want to get in touch with any of the professionals we use, our editor, designer, etc — please just ask me in the comments and I’ll connect you.

Good luck and please do subscribe on iTunes or Spotify for Series 4 — tune in or you’ll miss out. 🙏 ✌️ 🎙

Co-Founder of Heights, & Host of Secret Leaders, I write about brain health, mental wellbeing & entrepreneurship.

Co-Founder of Heights, & Host of Secret Leaders, I write about brain health, mental wellbeing & entrepreneurship.