I recently had the pleasure of attending the Podcast Movement conference in Philadelphia. Given that I have a podcast, I thought it might be helpful to go to a conference with some of the best and brightest podcasters out there.
I was a little nervous about spending the money to go to the conference. I spent a fair amount of money to attend, especially in the context of not earning a lot of money at the moment. I earned $124 in July 2018.
Adding up everything I spent on the conference gives me a balance around $1,240 for one week at a conference. This includes the cost of the ticket, the sketchy Airbnb, food, and transportation. From a pure numbers stand point, it doesn’t make sense.
However, there are an untold number of benefits that you can’t put… uh, a number on haha.
The Meetup was Heatin’ Up
Sunday evening Stacking Benjamins and Choose FI (two of my absolute fav podcasts) hosted a joint meetup at a local brewery. They opened it up to any financial podcast and their audience to join them as there is quite the overlap in audiences. My co-host J and I flew in early to hang out with a bunch of like minded people.
We got to meet fellow online financial people but more importantly, several listeners/readers were there specifically to hang out with us. I LOVE meeting people who listen/read the stuff I produce. It helps me figure out what topics to talk about and also just gives me a chance to hang out with people who think like me.
Where else could I find people to commiserate over owning a crappy rental property with druggie tenants? You’re not going to have that conversation with a stranger in line at the grocery store check out, that’s for sure.
So, a tremendous THANK YOU to those that came out to see us. We loved getting to meet you in person!!
PM18 officially kicked off Tuesday, but J and I attended several networking events on Monday. We got to speed network with a bunch of awesome lady podcasters and then chatted with random people in the hallways. It turns out there’s a podcast for any topic you could think of — traveling while gluten free, living with diabetes, raising awareness for incarceration of women, veteran stories, and any number of comedy and true crime podcasts.
We realized we’ve barely cracked the surface on stories to tell so we made verbal invites to a number of people to come on the show who have amazing stories. It was really fun to stand there and glance at J who was just as enraptured by a story as I was and know one of us was going to make the offer when they finished their story. I literally cannot wait to have them on and share their story with everyone!!
J and I also got offers to appear on other people’s podcasts, which we will happily accept. We love spreading the message of FI and talking about our adventures in side hustles with new audiences. I also got an offer to appear on a nationally syndicated radio show talking about real estate, so I’m pretty excited for the chance to make my radio debut. (Winning tickets to a Phil Vassar concert on the local country station when I was 12 doesn’t count.)
There were also people repping podcast networks, podcast software solutions, and podcasting equipment. We have the chance to speak with a Senior VP about joining a podcast network which could easily double or triple our reach and start bringing in money (if we decide to go with them). I would never feel comfortable emailing that high of a person at such a prestigious company without that personal connection beforehand. Pretty cool stuff!
Interwoven with everyone else was my amazing co-host J. We live in separate timezones, so although we talk every day we only see each other in person maybe once a year. Getting to spend 3 whole days with her was a very special treat! Normally we talk about podcast stuff around work and recording new episodes, so it was incredibly beneficial to be able to focus on podcast stuff for such an extended period of time.
(warning: all the feels coming up)
Sometimes I unwittingly take advantage of her as a partner, but being at this conference opened my eyes wider as to how amazing she is. I mean, I knew it on some level already but this conference solidified it. Our podcast wouldn’t be anything without all her hard work, so major shoutout to J!
Realizing my co-host is literally the best co-host ever wasn’t the only thing I learned at the conference.
Never Stop Learning
If I ever say something along the lines of “I know everything about podcasting” please punch me in the face.
J and I learned SO MUCH. The sessions were so incredibly helpful. It was like standing in front of a fire hose full of information about podcasting. I’m so sad I could only go to one session at a time. I do, however, have access to the digital recordings when they come out so you bet your bippies I’ll be watching the sessions I couldn’t get to and maybe even going back to ones I attended in person.
Then we get the fun of putting all that knowledge into action!
I’m really excited about the way I’ll put that knowledge into action. I was sitting in the lounge in the expo hall one day when a booth near me started their giveaways. I like free stuff so I mosied over to see what they were doing. I did some podcast trivia and failed miserably because apparently I live under a rock.
But then.… then they had a rock paper scissors contest for a new mic and mic activator. If you don’t know what that is, join the club. I think it has something to do with making the sound clearer. There’s a more technical definition but I don’t want to bore you with details. Plus, I don’t know what those details are.
So, I beasted my way through the contest and WON! I won almost $1,000 worth of podcast gear. I won the Shure SM7B microphone (the same one used by Joe Rogan and Michael Jackson!) and the mic activator thing called the Cloudlifter CL-1. Thanks to Buzzsprout for the gear!
These are going to make me sound so amazing! I can’t wait to get it all set up.…. but much like getting a free kitten, I’ll have to cough up some more money to get everything setup correctly. I’m hoping I don’t have to spend sticker price on the gear that I need to complete the upgrade, but I’m willing to make the investment if I have to.
Why You Should Go to Conferences
Don’t look at conferences as spending money. Look at conferences as investments in whatever endeavor you’re doing. The networking alone is priceless! Plus, there’s the chance you could win some cool stuff that elevates your game to the next level!
If you want to hear more about our experience in Philadelphia, be sure to listen to our August 1st episode where we recorded live at Podcast Movement!
Thanks for reading! Have you been to any conferences lately? Anyone wanna hang out at FinCon 2018?
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