Case Study: How One Veteran’s Podcast Built a Million-Dollar Business

traditional radio microphone

After spending many years in traditional career fields — including real estate, finance, and eight years as an Army Officer — John Lee Dumas still felt unfulfilled.

He couldn’t shake the feeling that his real calling was still out there — that there must be a way for him to feel excited to go to work every day.

He took a leap of faith and launched an interview-based business podcast called EntrepreneurOnFire. Within its first few months, the podcast became a top-ranked iTunes business podcast and earned a coveted spot on the “Best of iTunes” list.

The podcast is now the cornerstone (and biggest lead generator) of a thriving business that regularly brings in six figures each month.

Is John excited to go to work? You bet he is.

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How to Curate Knowledge, Turn it Into Wisdom, and Build Your Audience

Your audience expects a lot out of you.

As well as they should.

Which is why if you want to build a business you need an audience. But you can’t have an audience if don’t have authority. And you can’t have authority unless you have wisdom.

You need wisdom that enables you to paint the big picture while making obtuse concepts clear.

You need wisdom that inspires you to draw connections that other people in your niche don’t see.

And you need wisdom that empowers you to make connections and build relationships … so you can lead.

How do you gain this wisdom? By making a consistent habit of curating knowledge.

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The 5 W’s of Link Curation

When someone shares a link, and you click on it, and you are moved in some way by it — to action, to inspiration, even to tears — how do you feel about the person who shared it with you?

You likely feel equal parts appreciation and respect. If you’re honest, you might even feel a slight twinge envy. (Damnit, why didn’t I find that link to share first!)

It’s okay.

Being the clicker and the consumer is just fine. Content marketing is an ecosystem, and we all have to play multiple roles to keep it in motion.

But there is no reason you can’t be the link sharer more often. There is no reason you can’t consistently share useful links so that the appreciation and respect of an audience gets directed towards you.

To do this, all you have to do is understand the who, what, when, where, and why (plus the how) of link curation.

Which just so happens to be the subject of this week’s episode of The Lede.

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How Freaks and Misfits Can Succeed in Business: A Conversation with Chris Brogan

Do you refuse to settle?

Do you want to do things your way?

Do you have a different way of looking at the world?

And, most importantly, are you looking for a way to make your weirdness an asset?

If you answered “Yes” to any of the four questions above, then I’ve got a great book recommendation for you.

And the author of said book (you know him well) is this week’s guest on The Lede:

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6 Nonverbal Hacks for Your Website So it Captures Attention and Converts

Image of a mime staring at camera, mouth agape and hands open with palms facing camera

You have 0.05 seconds to make a good first impression online.

That’s only 50 milliseconds to hook someone — according to researchers at Carleton University.

Most important, this happens before a user reads any of your content. So, you have to capture their attention with your website’s nonverbal cues.

Do you have any of the following?

  • Low conversions
  • High bounce rate
  • Short average visit duration
  • Low sales
  • Slow traffic

Then you need to optimize your website’s nonverbal first impression.

I’m a human behavior hacker, and I’m going to show you how to use science to optimize your website.

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How to Be Authentic

Do people really want the real you? All of it?

The answer will, of course, depend on the audience and the forum.

If you are writing a blog about drug addiction, telling your most horrifying stories is a prerequisite. Your audience will expect it.

If, on the other hand, you are writing a blog to support your tax preparation business, you probably want to keep most of your tales of woe out of it — no matter how “real” they may be.

Being “authentic” means being genuine. It means having an honest conversation with your audience. Within reason.

So how do you know what is too much you, how much is not enough, and where the sweet spot is?

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