July 10, 2018

30k uniques + 1k email subscribers + questions for Courtland about the podcast

Hi IH! I started Lumenauts.com 6 months ago. I and other people in the Stellar community publish tutorials, explainers, and blog posts to the site to help developers and businesses building on top of the Stellar.org (Stripe was the first funder of Stellar.org) network.

Stats

  • 1,000 email subscribers, 22 issues, 50% open rate, and 14% click through rate

  • 30,000 unique visitors in its first 6 months

  • 15,000 minutes of watch time on the Lumenauts Youtube channel: youtube.com/lumenauts

Revenue

The site has generated inbound client work for me and was a finalist in the Stellar Build Challenge, receiving some non-traditional revenue in the form of 80k lumens.

Now I am considering starting a content series (podcast and/or written posts) where I interview founders of Stellar-based businesses so they can share their lessons learned with others in the community, and I have an initial sponsor for this interview series.

Questions

I love the IH podcast and interview formats, have learned so much from Courtland and the guests, and hope to deliver something of similar value to a different audience. Below are questions are mostly for @csallen related to podcasting, but I’d love feedback on Lumenauts and answers from anyone in the IH community:

  1. How long does it take you to put together one episode?

  2. How do you maximize the audio quality of the people you interview? Did you ever mail interviewees a microphone?

  3. Which gets more “impressions” - written interviews or podcast episodes?

  4. Do you prepare interviewees in some way before the interview?

  5. How much do you edit each episode? Do you rearrange questions or trim out less interesting content?

Thanks so much!


  1. 7
    1. How long does it take you to put together one episode?

    About a day of work in total, if you include picking guests and reaching out, scheduling, 2-3 hours of prep, recording the episode, editing the episode myself, sending it off to my editor/transcriptionist, and coming up with a title and description and social media images.

    1. How do you maximize the audio quality of the people you interview? Did you ever mail interviewees a microphone?

    I use Zencastr, which will make a local recording on their machine, which is usually higher quality than what comes over the wire to my speakers. Other than that, nothing. I've never been a big stickler for audio quality.

    1. Which gets more “impressions” - written interviews or podcast episodes?

    Podcast episodes by a large margin. Recent episodes are averaging 35,000 downloads after 6 weeks or so. Text interviews that go viral have gotten upwards of 100,000 pageviews in a single day, but that's rare.

    1. Do you prepare interviewees in some way before the interview?

    Yep, I'll generally tell them a little bit about the show in the weeks leading up to it, point them to my favorite episodes, etc. Then we chat for 5-10 minutes before the episode begins, and I ask/tell them things like:

    • Are there any topics you really want to cover?

    • Anything you want to avoid?

    • Is it okay if we talk about your revenue numbers?

    • What would make this whole experience a success for you? What do you want most?

    • I've got an editor, so you can start over if you don't like an answer you're giving, or you can take your time before answering and leave a long space. No pressure.

    • etc.

    1. How much do you edit each episode? Do you rearrange questions or trim out less interesting content?

    I spend way too much time editing. It takes me about 3 hours to edit an hour long episode myself, because I will re-record questions that I asked awkwardly, remove parts of the interview that were repetitive or boring, etc. I rarely rearrange anything, though.

    1. 1

      great effort Courtland. Keep it up.

    2. 1

      That actually sounds painfully tedious.

      Thankful that you're doing it, haha.

      1. 3

        It is. I actually don't like running the podcast at all, but the result makes it worth it, so I'll keep it going. Others I know who work on podcasts have several tricks that save them time:

        (1) They don't prepare as much, 15-20 minutes tops. (2) They're clearer speakers than I am, or at least they're less anal and perfectionistic, so they don't re-record stuff.

        1. 1

          I actually came here to ask basically all the questions above. Really appreciate what you're doing with the podcast, and like to listen to them while running, so keep up the good work!

    3. 1

      brilliant - this is incredibly helpful. thank you, courtland!