Sian [my VA], had told me about Samantha Parker and her Facebook Group – We Are Badassery a few times. She told me it would be great to interview her, just so I could hear all about Sam’s amazing side-projects (or side hustles as she would call them), and what perseverance can achieve…
So Sam tell me, Badassery is growing like crazy! Was it something you anticipated, or knew it would take a certain amount of time to grow to?
It’s really hard to shake that crystal ball, and suddenly be like, ‘it’ll grow’, but yes… Badassery Magazine has more readers each month, and we see more people join our community. More and more people are also listening to the Badassery Podcast too, and it’s becoming even more popular. We have also been lucky enough to have more widely known guests: we have just interviewed Denise D-T; and, Gary V has committed to being on the podcast!
We just take each little step and then make the most of social media, as is the norm now – I sometimes wonder where else we would even do business now, and I really don’t know!
We live in such a cool world now and so many things are possible – it’s awesome. We can connect with people globally… We can sell anything… do anything and literally BE anything!
Whenever somebody says that it has already all been said and done, I disagree, there is STILL an audience that you can target that needs to hear from YOU. There will ALWAYS be space out there and that includes space for everybody.
I want to hear more about the Badassery Podcast… Do you record weekly, or in advance?
We tend to record the podcast in batches of three or four episodes in a row, but obviously have to work around the availability of our guests too. Once everything has been finalised, we put out a new episode every week or so.
You and your co-host don’t sit in the same studio when recording do you?
No, we don’t get to sit together when we’re recording. You see, I live in Southern Utah and my partner lives in Northern Utah; as it’s the same state people think that we’re close together, but it’s pretty far away. Our other co-host lives in Florida, so that’s on the opposite coast of the USA!
One thing I’m sure all budding podcasting will want to know… Have you ever run into connectivity issues while recording?
Yes – we froze one time… Sometimes your connection will freeze, it happens! At least with a podcast, it can be edited, we can just say, “cut this” and then have a chat with the podcast editor.
I’ve listened to a couple of the Badassery Podcasts, and what I really admire is how you take learnings from your guests on the fly. Is that a gift, or something you’ve developed?
To be honest, I think it is just something I’ve learned to do. We always chat to our guests before we start, so we know what specific questions we want to ask. Then as we’re chatting, if I think of a new question I write it down, that allows me to be able to pick it up straight away… If we do end up with a few moments of tumbleweeds, we know that it can always be cut! Sam laughs…
Are there any major learnings from your progress so far on the podcast?
This is one of the weird parts about the business I’m in – my job is just to show up! I don’t really get involved in any of the technical stuff: I record the episode and then hand it all over to the editor. I don’t sit over here editing our podcasts! One of the huge things I’ve learned is that if you find something that you’re really good at, you stick with it, then you find someone else who is really good at what they do to help you. I’ve learned the importance of outsourcing and staying within my own zone of genius.
Did this come to you overnight, or did you go through that hard period of ‘learning things’?
When we started the podcast, the business was already pretty successful; but with my main business, I probably jumped on-board the delegation train WAY LATER than I should have; but I now have an Assistant, PolyGraphic Designer and Copywriter. I’m lucky to have an assistant that pretty much works for me full-time. I have my business partner too, who has brought all of the things that she’s pretty great at too… Then, we have podcast managers, and a publicist. Progress is always a rolling thing, but I think a lot of people wait far too long to bring help on-board for themselves.
Do you think there is advice there for others then? Most freelancers and entrepreneurs I know think they must do everything themselves, instead of focusing on their zone of genius and getting a really cool side-project going.
If we were all honest, we don’t really want to spend any extra money and just try to do it all ourselves. I call that the “sitting on your tipping point” – it’s the best way to describe it… This is the point where you realise, “I can’t make any more money, unless I spend money, but I can’t afford to spend money, without making money” … You just sit in this cycle and push yourself backwards and forwards; but, there are so many DIFFERENT things you CAN do! Maybe hire somebody who can build the ‘basis’ of your website; or, work with a VA part-time – all you need to do is start small. Once you realise how good everything has become, you just add to it and build it up to full-time.
Did you have a specific podcast coaching, or did you learn as you go? Do you have a coach yourself?
No, not at all! But, I also think it’s a little different for us. The podcast is a part of the overarching Badassery brand, and isn’t a standalone thing. I do work with a coach myself, who has helped me to reach some of the next big milestones for my business, but not specifically for the podcast, as we already have the audience, I literally just show up and talk!
What’s the Badassery vision?
Badassery is a brand. We have a private membership site for the magazine… We have had retreats, with another one coming up in Las Vegas… Will be having a conference… We already have our own t-shirts and mugs for sale.
I’m glad you mentioned the magazine there Sam! I took a look through the magazine and the design is great, with some really amazing pictures too! Kathy Rasmussen, my business partner who co-owns Badassery Magazine with me does all of the layout and does a really awesome job! That’s on top of everything else that she already does!
Do you find that you have a lot of new people asking to contribute in the magazine? Or, does it feel like you have to drag people in to write?
At first, we were having to say, “we’re looking for contributors” quite a lot, but now we just post on social media a couple of times a month. We did have to work at convincing people and get them to be a part of the vision.
Now, we have the vision and we just build on it. Looking back, it makes me really grateful about where were we at this time last year, as I was trying to pull people in and wondering, “what can we do?” – now it’s just a well-oiled machine.
We also have our publicist who reaches out to specific people for us too: the more widely known podcast guests and contributors for the magazine.
I want to ask you a question that you don’t have to answer here… Is the Badassery business model making money at present?
Yes, Badassery makes money because we have the private membership site – it’s not a lot of money, but it sustains the business right now, and means that it doesn’t come out of our pockets. Almost all of my income comes from my social media management business [Hype Social Strategies] and my coaching business [The Samantha Parker Company], where I help people set-up their online business and start kicking ass! I take on a few clients each month and it’s awesome, but it all comes full circle, as a lot of that business came from Badassery.
Badassery is a side-hustle, it makes a little bit of money, and we just get a little further each day. It’s all part of the bigger vision. For some people, if it gets too hard, or they think it will take too long they quit. A lot of people quit too soon.
It sounds like you’re a really busy person Sam… Am I right?
I wouldn’t say that I’m necessarily busy… I work at home so I’ve integrated it in as a part of my life – I don’t really feel like I’m “working”! It’s different to when you’re stuck in a corporate office, because you’re stuck – here, I can work around my life… I always have something on my ‘agenda’, but I don’t necessarily feel busy.
I think it’s a mindset thing too. Everybody has enough time, it just depends on how they choose to spend their time!
You ‘go live’ on Facebook and record the podcasts, so I need to ask, did you have to get through any barriers?
Definitely – at first it is REALLY intimidating, and I can honestly say that I still get nervous; but now I don’t let it bother me… I tell myself, “I don’t care if I don’t look perfect” and “I don’t care if I don’t look right”; but, there are times when I start freaking out. So all I do is think, “these people have the choice whether they want to watch me or not”, so it doesn’t really matter. I look at it that way.
On a personal note… I tried a Facebook Group, but it didn’t really work… I see a lot of interaction in your group – is that something you steer and direct?
Oh absolutely! You must be engaged and excited to be there, as that energy and vibe ATTRACTS people to you – if you’re showing up and engaging, they will want to do it too! If you join a group, get involved and drawn in, you feel like you are a part of a COMMUNITY and will WANT to stick around.
I probably talked to myself for the first 6 months, but I didn’t give up and just keep posting every day, again and again – seriously, every day! I just decided that I was going to make it work no matter what!
My biggest take-aways from this conversation:
- Stick with it: Once you find that one big thing that you’re really good at, don’t stop! Even better… Take it that one step further and find yourself a partner who is really good at what they do – think about ALL OF THOSE COMBINATIONS!
- Step over your “tipping point” and delegate: You can stay inside your zone of genius, and start making that all important cash that you need to continue, while a VA or another Freelancer is working on the stuff holding you back.
- Never give up: Even when it feels like you are getting nowhere – persist and keep going… Tomorrow could be the day when AMAZING things happen!
I really enjoyed chatting with Sam about all things Badassery – so much seems to be happening!
Thank you for your time Samantha, you are a badass (but you know that). And, thank you for reading; you are great. You know that, right?!
What’s your next side-project?
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