SCML 05: Jon Nastor, Host of the “Hack the Entrepreneur” Podcast


If you’ve been thinking about starting a podcast to help build an audience for your business–or even if you haven’t (yet)–then you’ll LOVE this week’s episode of The Smarter Content Marketing Lab! My guest is Jon Naster, host of the incredibly popular Hack the Entrepreneur podcast and co-host of The Showrunner podcast.

What You’ll Learn

Jon talks about a wide array of interesting topics, sharing things like how:

  • He came up with the engaging hook that has helped him EXPLODE the growth of his Hack the Entrepreneur podcast
  • He uses content marketing—including writing for various publications like Entrepreneur—to build his business and scale up his podcast
  • He’s using using content marketing to build trust with his audience and promote sales of his products
  • He balances podcasting and writing and product creation
  • The podcast is the reason he gets to write for such high-profile businesses and publications
  • The podcast has transformed his life
  • You have to be patient and consistent when it comes to building an audience
  • To get clear about the focus and purpose of your podcast before getting started
  • To repurpose content—and why you should do it
  • Entrepreneurs are using podcasts to funnel audiences into their businesses
  • To monetize a podcast directly and indirectly

He also describes the four things that are essential to building a successful podcast.

Links to Cool Stuff

Here are the links to what was discussed during the show:

Hack the Entrepreneur Podcast

The Showrunner Podcast

The 9-Step Beginner’s Guide to Launching a Podcast (FREE at The Showrunner)

The Showrunner Podcasting Course


Also, be sure to connect with me at and at The Smarter Writing Lab. I’d love to hear from you!




What Brené Brown Taught Me about Being a Fearlessly Authentic Entrepreneur

The "friendly driving wave." That was the focus of Brené Brown's very first Facebook Live post. And it was HILARIOUS! But, in only a few hours, it was gone.

If you're a fan of Brené's like I am, then you know that she's a research professor at The University of Houston and does a lot of fantastic work surrounding courage, shame, vulnerability and authenticity. I discovered her when I was looking for videos on that I could use as examples of presentations that really connected with audiences. And the one she gave at TEDxHouston about the power of vulnerability was PERFECT.

Brené is known for dealing with a lot of really serious stuff. I mean, there's nothing innately funny about vulnerabilty or shame. So, that's why I was so surprised and DELIGHTED to see her Facebook Live post about the importance of NOT driving in the passing lane if you're not passing AND the courtesy of the "friendly driving wave." As a southerner, I grew up watching my dad give that wave to people we'd meet on country roads as we were going to my grandparents' house or to church. For him, the "wave" was typically just a lift of a couple of fingers from the steering wheel with a quick flick to the right. It was a simple, yet important, acknowledgement that said to the other driver, "I see you. I know you. I like you."

As an adult, I carry on the tradition of the "friendly driving wave"--typically throwing up a hand when someone lets me pass or lets me merge into a crowded lane. It's a quick way of saying thanks. And THAT'S what Brené was talking about on Facebook Live as she was driving back from giving a talk in Baton Rouge. Now--let's be clear--she WASN'T videoing herself or being unsafe in any way, shape or form. Her passenger was doing the videoing as Brené gave a short--yet ALL TOO FUNNY--lesson about the rules of courteous driving. I loved it and thought how nice it was to see her in a more relaxed setting, enjoying her day and letting her personality really shine through. It made me even MORE of a fan because she allowed us to see her as a real person. Cool, right?

Later than evening, I saw a new post from Brené pop up on Facebook. In it, she explained that she had taken the "friendly driving wave" Facebook Live video down. I was like, "WTF, Brené??" Evidently, some who had seen the video had commented that it was an example of distracted driving. So, because of that, Brené took it down--acknowledging that she wouldn't want her kids to do something similar. However, she went on to say that some other folks had commented that they don't follow her "for silly Texas driving tips." Instead, they follow her for "posts on serious topics." SERIOUSLY??? It was this next part of her post that endeared me to Brené FOREVER and that taught me an important lesson about being a more fearless and authentic entrepreneur. Here it is in her own words:

I deleted the post because it's probably not a great idea [to video while driving.] NOT because people didn't like it or jumped on me about it. If I took down everything that pissed off readers, this would be a very quiet neck of the woods.

A couple of people also commented that they don't follow me for silly Texas driving tips--they follow me for posts on serious topics. I'm really inclined to say, "too bad." I am a serious person who talks about serious things. But that's just part of me. If the other part of me doesn't work for you--that's totally ok by me. Seriously .

Brené Brown

This. Was. AWESOME!! I was like, "PREACH, Brené!" But, even more than being STOKED about her response, here's what it taught me:

  • Live Your Brand AUTHENTICALLY. Brené writes about and talks about and promotes the idea of being authentic. But that can be tough to do as an entrepreneur. There's a HUGE risk that comes with showing others who we really are. Will they like us? Will current customers stick with us? Will potential customers be turned away? If people don't like you or your business when they see who you really are, then--as Brené said-- "TOO BAD!" Not everyone is going to love you or even like you. What you're offering isn't going to be something everyone can benefit from. And that's perfectly okay. Because, in the end, the people you want to join you on your entrepreneurial journey are those who get you, who dig what you do, and who connect with you because of who you really are. Trying to be someone you're not in order to get and keep customers isn't only going to be exhausting--it's also going to be an exercise in futility. We are our brand--and we have to decide how we're going to live it.
  • If Something Doesn't Work, So What? This was Brené's first attempt at Facebook Live. And she ended up taking it down after some blow back. But she didn't just go away into a corner and tell herself "NEVER AGAIN!" Instead, she used it as an opportunity to connect with her audience by being completely transparent about what happened. And guess what? Her audience LOVED it. There were so many comments about how Brené was living her own life the same way she encourages others to live theirs--courageously. Being an entrepreneur is one of the scariest things in the world. But we have to face that fear every day and try new things. Some will work. Some won't. And if they don't--it's not the end of the world. Because it's ONLY through taking those risks--large or small--that we move toward the life we're meant to live.
  • Don't Forget the Friendly Driving Wave. A little sign of kindness and appreciation goes a long way. By letting others know we appreciate what they've done makes us all better human beings. Whether it's throwing up a quick wave to someone who's let us in a crowded lane on the highway or thanking our customers in small--yet unexpected--ways, it makes a difference. And isn't that why we're entrepreneurs in the first place?
  • So, speaking of showing appreciation, THANK YOU, BRENÉ BROWN!  I'm throwing up a metaphorical "friendly driving wave" to you. Your first foray into Facebook Live was more successful than you might have imagined. It's inspired me to be a more courageous and authentic entrepreneur--and it's also reminded me to NOT DRIVE IN THE PASSING LANE IF I'M NOT PASSING!

    If you enjoyed this post--AWESOME! I'd love to have you join me for more cool stuff over at The Smarter Writing Lab. And be sure to check out my FREE Copywriting Crash Course that'll teach you to how to develop content that will help you build your business by connecting more authentically with your audience. 



The “Screw It. Let’s Do It!” Challenge for Writers Who Want More


I’m the Queen of What If. Nobody does it any better than me.

“WHAT IF I make a mistake?”

“WHAT IF this doesn’t work?”

“WHAT IF I’m following the wrong path?”

“WHAT IF I’ve forgotten to problem solve for a key ‘what if’?”

Fun fact: I’m completely OCD. No joke. And it’s held me back in so many ways throughout my life. (Seriously. You have NO idea.) But through a lot of experiences (both good and bad), I’ve learned to use the stumbling blocks of OCD as starting blocks for bigger and better things in my life–both personally and professionally. For me to take even small steps forward, I’ve had to learn how to summon up a mindset of “Screw it. Let’s do it!”. Otherwise, I’d stay stuck in places that I really don’t like very much.

Getting to the “Screw it. Let’s do it!” mindset is truly mind over matter for me. It doesn’t come naturally. I’m not a “throw care to the wind” kind of gal. Quite the opposite, in fact. But every time I make the conscious decision to live by this mantra—I’ve found that I come out on the other end a much better, stronger and smarter person. And that’s the case regardless of whether I’ve succeeded or failed when taking that leap.

So, what does all of this mean for you as a writer? My guess is that if you’ve read this far, you probably have those whispers of “what if” running through your head from time to time, too. You might not be OCD. But you’re creative. And because of that, you have to deal with the evil villain called RESISTANCE. In The War of Art: Break Through the Blocks and Win You Inner Creative Battles, Steven Pressfield explains the danger Resistance wreaks in the lives of writers:

There’s a secret that real writers know that wannabe writers don’t, and the secret is this: It’s not the writing part that’s hard. What’s hard is sitting down to write. What keeps us from sitting down is Resistance.

How true, huh? Whether it’s sitting down to write website copy for a client or to start a new novel or to develop a new online course or to draft an outline for that fantastic “how-to” book you want to self-publish, Resistance can be a killer. And it’s not going away on its own–so don’t even think about not addressing it. We’ve basically got two options: We can give into it and remain stuck. Or we can confront it and fight our way past it, allowing us to realize the awesome potential each of us has within. It’s up to us to make the choice.

Now, back to the “what if” syndrome. What if…we turned those doubts into positive challenges that pushed us past the long and powerful reach of Resistance?

“WHAT IF I stopped putting off contacting potential new clients for my freelance writing?”

“WHAT IF I figured out a way to build a writing business that allows me to quit the job I hate and provide a great lifestyle for my family?

“WHAT IF I developed an online course that really helps people AND creates a significant passive income for me?”

“WHAT IF I contacted a few of the popular blogs I’ve been following and write a guest post for them that gets me a lot of new subscribers to my own blog?”

The positive “what ifs” are endless. And they’re certainly life changing. So, here’s my challenge to you:

Instead of wishing you made a better living as a writer or hoping a new client will call or dreaming about the life of being a published author or thinking how cool it would be to create and launch an online course—SCREW IT. LET’S DO IT!

I’m not just issuing the challenge. I’m taking it. Although I make a very good living as a freelance copywriter, I want to push myself further with my writing skills. I want to use them to build my business, to create new revenue streams, to help others, and to inspire myself in ways I never imagined. The list is long and I’ll be sharing my goals, my successes and—yes—even my failures with you along the way.

Let me know in the comments if you’re taking up the SCREW IT. LET’S DO IT! challenge and what that’s going to look like for you. We can all learn from each other—and it surely makes it a lot more fun when we know we’re sharing the journey with a lot of other kindred spirits!

To yield to Resistance deforms our spirit. It stunts us and makes us less that we are and were born to be.– Steven Pressfield

Get your FREE copy of The Prosperous Copywriter’s Toolbox — a comprehensive resource of the tools I’ve used to build a successful freelance copywriting business! Click here.