As the podcasting industry continues to grow, it has become even more important to rise against the tide. One sure way to do that is by becoming a good podcast host, one who not only speaks well but also has the staying power to continue to inspire and impart their message. So what are the qualities that make a person a good host? Well, let’s find out! In this episode of The Binge Factor, our host Tracy Hazzard interviews author, change agent, and founder of CoronaTV, Joseph Jaffe. Joseph shares how CoronaTV was formed and, in the most challenging of times, continues to show up for the audience who need it. He also shares the strategies he uses while hosting and what he has learned creating content for his show. This conversation is a great starting point for people who want to host their own podcast. Learn what it takes to become one and have the stamina to commit to it for the long haul.
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Committing To The Stamina Needed To Be An Astoundingly Good Podcast Host With Joseph Jaffe Of CoronaTV
In this episode, I’m talking with the host of CoronaTV, Joseph Jaffe. It is an interesting genesis to start something right at the start of the pandemic and dive into it, call it CoronaTV. A year and a little bit more, what do you do with it? Where’s it going to go? We’re going to dive into that conversation. We’re also going to hear about the love that Joe has for the media, for the type of doing live talk show-style podcasts. That’s what he’s doing. He’s doing his live as well as recorded and turned it into the podcast. Joseph Jaffe is an author, entrepreneur and as of March 2020, the host of CoronaTV, a daily streaming interview-based show about hope, positivity and optimism. If there’s time left, a little bit of marketing.
As a consultant and thought leader in the marketing and innovation space, he’s worked with countless Fortune 500 companies as well as startups. As a speaker, he delivers a brilliant high-impact message with innovative and practical advice for movement towards growth. Jaffe has written five books including Life After the 30-Second Spot, Join the Conversation, Flip the Funnel, Z.E.R.O and Built to Suck: The Inevitable Demise of Corporation…and How to Save It?
In 2019, he joined West Virginia University’s Reed College of media as an instructor in the Integrated Marketing Communications Online Graduate Program. He wrote and lectured a course on Brand Evolution Strategy and Social Media. Joe’s passion, straight-shooting and honest perspectives have found their way to every major media outlet. Including CBS Evening News, ABC World News, Bloomberg, NPR, The Wall Street Journal, New York Times, USA Today, Fortune, Newsweek, Businessweek Ad Age, Ad Week and the list continues.
He’s a member of the Founders Institute, Entrepreneurs Roundtable and TechStars. He has lectured at NYU Stern Business School, Cornell’s Johnson School of Business, West Virginia and Syracuse University. Joe is such an interesting guy. He’s got such an interesting take. He’s doing a massively intense interview show. It’s over an hour long. It’s every day. He’s also got an aftershow, which is a live Q&A session with his guests so there are a lot of moving parts in this. To top it all off, he’s got a heart condition and has to undergo heart surgery. It’ll probably happen coinciding with the launch of the show. He’s going to follow it up by launching a new version of variation on his show, a shift, a pivot and new branding, which he’s going to announce here on the show.
Additionally, I wanted to give you the story of how I met Joe and why he intrigued me so much that I had to have them on my show because he’s doing such a different model of a show that it’s intriguing. I want to make sure that we’re bringing you all different styles of shows and what we can do so we can learn much from what other podcasters, in this case, live streamers are doing. I met him in Lou Diamond’s Clubhouse room. This is the funniest and serendipitous story. I love it when serendipity happens.
Lou Diamond has been on the show and you have read it. I wrote an article about him so we became re-engaged and got to know each other because of Clubhouse. I popped into a room and he said that he was hosting and checked it out. That’s what exactly happened. I finally got Clubhouse on my Samsung. I finally got it going. I got all in and I’m like, “I’m testing it out. I want to hear. Does my microphone work?” By the way, my actual physical microphone works on Clubhouse. I hook everything up again and I look for somebody who’s got a room. Wouldn’t you know it, Lou’s got one.
I pop into his room because I want to check it out and see what he’s doing but I also want to see and hopefully test out. Maybe he’ll bring me up to the front so I can ask a question so I can test out and see how the sound is going on my new setup on my Android. I pop into the room and Lou is like, “Tracy, you’ve got to come up and meet everybody.” We’re engaging back and forth and I met three of his guests, of which Joseph Jaffe was one of them. I was hearing him talk and quote his guests.
Because he has so many of them that he can tap into, like what I tried to do here but he can tap into all this rich information and quote someone he had on his show and share that information with an audience. It’s like a Rolodex. He’s tapping all of that in and bringing you rich information and it makes you want to listen to his show or watch it. In the case of the live stream, join it live so you can ask questions of these fabulous great guests, too. That’s how that happened. We have Lou Diamond to thank for bringing us together and bringing us our next guest here on the show, Joseph Jaffe of CoronaTV.
Joseph, welcome to the show. I’m so glad to have you here on the show because your show has become quite the enterprise since you started it. You started right at the beginning of the pandemic. You started CoronaTV. You did this long-format talk show. What made you decide that this was the right time and the right type of show?
There are two answers to that. The one answer is, you don’t think. You just do. You execute, learn, pivot and trial and error. You discover joy from a new idea and keep building. The other is some kind of at least plan because you have to at least have a clue. For my story, I’ll try and tell it as quickly and succinctly as I can. I’m in South Africa, visiting my mom. She’s a few years now into this, what is a chronic battle with cancer. I’m visiting her. I’m about to present. Being a five-time author, public speaker and keynote speaker, I always would try and double up while traveling or doing something personal.
The phone rings and as my wife was saying, “I’m not feeling great. I’ve got a fever. I’ve lost my sense of smell and taste.” I’m like, “You have COVID.” She’s like, “It’s the flu and I’m under the weather.” I’m like, “You know you have COVID.” I flew back the next day and immediately went into quarantine or self-quarantine. I never got it then and never got it since. She did have COVID. She’s fine. Over the next week, every single speaking engagement, event and every piece of consulting evaporated like many people reading this, no doubt.
I don’t know what it was. I wish I could remember the moment. Ironically, my entire life is on record now on video but I don’t know what the moment was that said, “Let me do a Facebook Live.” I was barely on Facebook at the time. I was not doing any streaming. Look at this face. This is a face for radio, as they say. I had no business doing video but I decided I would do a Facebook Live to connect with people. What is everybody feeling? I felt I could do it because I wasn’t afraid to do it. I decided to do it again the next day and the next day. I did a Facebook Live of going to get a test. I was able to get a COVID test at the time. We live in a small town so it was a little easier. Somehow, I decided what if I do this every day of this weird period. What’s it going to be, 3,4, 5 weeks?
I decided to use Zoom and I realized Zoom had the capability of time and being able to stream live to Facebook. I thought, “It’s two birds with one stone,” and I started having some technical issues with Zoom. At the same time, my sister, who lives in London said to me that she has a spinning studio. She’s a solo entrepreneur. She said, “We were told that we’re going into lockdown.” I’ll never forget a word. She said, “I knew that if I closed the doors of the spinning studio, I would close them forever.”
What she did was she put all of her bikes into a U-Haul, emailed all the best customers and said, “Who wants a bike during this time?” She started experimenting with Vimeo and Instagram Live. I said to her, “Why don’t you come on my show and be my first guest?’” It wasn’t a show because the show is the backside. She was guest number one. I had Joe Pulizzi, who was guest 102. He was back for the second time. He was guest 258 or 259 and I have not missed a show. StreamYard came along and I started using StreamYard. That whole story, from the first Facebook Live to StreamYard, was three weeks.
We hear about people who start their shows and it’s usually 3 to 6 months before they settle into shifting things but you had an accelerated format for that because you had to figure it out while you were going.
The name CoronaTV was poking the bear. It was a little bit irreverent because that’s my brand. Amidst all this terrible uncertainty, unpredictability, volatility and tragedy, the idea of CoronaTV, a show born in a global pandemic, is not defined by it. It’s a show about hope, positivity and optimism. If there’s time left over, a little bit of marketing. That’s how it was born. As the old saying goes, “The rest is history.”
I love that you headed deep into that. That’s the decision we all made. Tom and I, like you experienced with your wife, got COVID right at the beginning. We were sick and our kids were out of school because they were home with us sick. They’re feeling better and they can’t go back to school because they shut down. In that 1.5 weeks, we were sick. Everything shut down around us and we were unaware. We were on the phone with clients who are panicking. We would get out of bed and it was like, “Which one of us feels well enough to take the call.” That’s how it was for 1.5 weeks for us.If you're going to do it, then do it the right way and have that staying power. Click To Tweet
After that, we said, “We’re going to dive in and do what we do best.” We did our weekly coaching calls. We weren’t intense. We were there. We were on. We weren’t whining. We weren’t complaining. We were doing it. We’re like, “I’m going to advise you on what to do next. We’re going to figure this out. Give us your questions, we’ll answer them.” In our pre-talk discussion about this, you felt like you’ve been giving for over a year. The reality is you have. You’ve been so benevolent in your giving and showing up for people that your audience is your reward is much deserved.
My reward, I’ve been giving but I’ve been getting back. What I’ve been getting back is the ability to inspire, to be a servant host. We hear a lot about this idea of being servant leaders or servant authors. I’m a servant host. I live for my guest and my audience.
Somebody asked me something about my view on leadership and I said that it is a servant-leadership view. It’s so funny that you’re saying that and that does come from being a podcaster.
The thing is, I was on a show and I was back-channeling with someone. I said, “I need to help them understand what it is to be a host.” Who am I to say that? What do I know about streaming? What do I know about hosting? Somewhere along the line in the first few weeks, my wife stormed into my office and she said to me, “Seriously, you’ve got to shut up. You’ve got to stop talking. You talk and you talk. Your questions are so long and verbose. You keep talking about yourself.”
I said to her, “What do you know?” She was, as always, right. It was a life-changing piece of advice because I learned how to become an active listener. I learned how to be quiet and let my guests talk. When they were done talking, I would talk. I rarely interrupt and make it about myself. You talk about binge factors. I’ll tell you what isn’t a binge factor. It’s tuning in every day to hear somebody talking about themselves. That’s the anti binge factor.
My number one pet peeve is, “Stop making it all about you.”
When I’m a guest, I can figure out how to make the transition. I can figure out how to get back to verbal diarrhea when I’m a guest. It’s funny that one of the weird things that happen now when I’m a guest is I don’t know what way to put my hands. I’m like, “I’m with this thing at the moment,” because I’m so used to camera angles, banners, comments so I don’t know what to do with myself.
I don’t have to manage all that when I’m the guest. You’re supposed to be able to sit back. I can talk with my hands so I’ve discovered where to put them. They’re always in the way.
Now I can do things. For example, I can use my Rodecaster to use sound effects.
You were doing it on Clubhouse.
“How did you do this?”
You had a talk show idea in mind eventually. You moved into that model. Was there someone you were specifically modeling after? Did you have a show that you liked that you’ve said, “I want to do mine like that?”
I’ve been inspired by a bunch of people. Before we go into that, I want to make sure that I share this point. I never changed my speaker website at all. I never inserted the word virtual at all. I never wanted to become the world’s greatest virtual speaker. The market was so crowded and noisy. Everyone was in it. I zigged when everyone else was zagging to the point where I left it all behind and became a talk show host. When you look at my social media profiles, it says, “Talk show host.”
Whether I am or not, I’m projecting it. I’m visualizing it. I’m manifesting it as my reality. It’s not delusional or maybe it’s partly delusional but I don’t care. For me, it was be all in or don’t show up. I don’t know whether we’ll get back to that or not but it was this idea of, “If you’re going to do it, do it the right way and have that staying power.” To answer your question, there are a few people, different ways, shapes and forms. Tim Ferriss and Howard Stern, in terms of long-form interviews, are the world’s greatest interviewers.
Howard Stern’s questions are awesome.
He is an artist. Many people who will talk badly or critically about him are certainly not listening to him, for sure. I can say 100%. You also realize and I’ll listen to him not even to hear the words but to hear not the word but the how. Howard Stern for sure. Tim Ferriss, also, in terms of insightful, thoughtful in long-form. An interview can be two hours. I love the fact that you shouldn’t have to feel pressured. We’re going into an ad break. It’s a three minutes segment. It’s, “Get to the point.” There’s got to be a preamble. There has to be essentially a bit of foreplay in terms of leading up to whatever that a-ha moment is.
You don’t get to that depth.The thing that connects us all together is hope, positivity, optimism, and being alive. Click To Tweet
You don’t. Two others that I’ve been in different ways in terms of the new format, which we’ll get to John Stuart. I like Bill Meyer for many reasons. One is he is the real deal, as is Howard Stern.
He’s prepared. That’s what I find about Bill Meyer. He isn’t like, “I read the cover to the book.” Instead, he’s deeply into where the good questions.
I also went with him on the format. He’s got his monologue at the beginning. He has his first guest then he has a bit, his panel, new rules and an aftershow. The aftershow is a big part of at least the first format and the first year and change of CoronaTV.
I want to give everybody a little prep about what the aftershow is. Not only do you do your show, which is over an hour but you do your show and you have an aftershow, which is another live Q&A with the guests as well.
It began on Zoom. It became a family and more than a community. Everyone talks about community. This was family.
They all seem to know each other because you leave it raw. If you listen to it after the fact, leave it raw on your YouTube, people comment back and forth. They’re like, “Every week your Zoom is still muted.” You’re ripping each other. It’s hilarious.
The show is not a labor of love. The aftershow is love. The aftershow has been a labor of love because I don’t know what to do with it. It’s so special and unique, I want to protect it but at the same time it’s more time. It’s 1.5 hours every day. I’ve done a lot of experimentation with the aftershow at the moment where we are but it will change no doubt. I’m taking my guests from Monday through Thursday and bringing them back. I’ve got to say this is our mutual friend, Lou Diamond.
Hats off to him and full attribution to his inspiration and leadership but bringing them back in Clubhouse or Twitter space the following Friday to drive back attention to those episodes and do something but it’s going to change again. One of the ways that will change is to reward Jaffe coin holders, my cryptocurrency, my Creator Coin, I want to figure out real and unique ways and all you have to do is hold my coin to get all these perks and benefits. One of them might be access to the aftershow.
Another one might be the ability to be on stage and participate and ask questions of my guest. A third one is going to be my show is moving to 9:00 PM. I know we’ll get into late-night as well and why I’ve decided to do that. If my guest can’t record at 9:00 PM Eastern because let’s say they’re in London then I’ll record a 12:00. Only the aftershow regulars and coin holders will get access to an unlisted YouTube URL so they will be able to watch, participate and comment on the show at 12:00. I’m thinking of ways on how to recognize and reward, to use your phrase, people who have earned the binge.
They’ve binged enough to earn the right to have access. That’s the interesting part about the community that you’re engaging with and created is you can see they’ve been there for a while. They not only know each other. They know the type of guest. They seemed prepared with the questions that they want. They’ve been listening and making notes for themselves or whatever it is but they’re thinking about, “What do I want to ask,” and they ask great questions.
They’re so smart. One of them, Tom Morris, the guy that I’m always muting, was a guest on the show. To me, that was the epitome. It was your guest is never one and done. It’s the beginning of a relationship where people should come on my show. That’s why Joe Pulizzi coming back makes me the happiest person in the world that he would want to come back. I want him back but that’s the thing. This world is divided into two camps. The transactional camp and the relationship camp. For the most part, it’s overwhelmingly disproportionately in favor of transactions, quantity data, instead of quality relationships and meaningful connections. It should be obvious which camp I can care about.
Before we go into some of the pieces that we always do on the show because I’m sure people want to hear your perspective on that. I want to touch base because you’ve got a lot of moving parts here. You’ve got CoronaTV that runs live every single day. You’ve got the aftershow going. You’ve got a new show in the works. You’ve got a relaunch. You have Jaffe coin going on. How are you looking at all of these pieces from a now more global perspective on what you’re building?
We forgot to mention that I’m undergoing heart surgery.
We didn’t even mention that.
Isn’t it weird thinking about people reading this now and realizing where I am? Isn’t it crazy? There is a strategy, 1,000%. What I’m building is a platform. The show is the hero and the show is my heart and my soul. Around that, I’m looking to build out eventually a keynote, a book, a workshop, a training program and solutions that will allow me to extend the brand and bring it to life. For the most part, the way I’ve looked at even the corporate solution, what if your next status meeting was a show? What if your next employee onboarding was a show? What if your next all-hands meeting or your next training program was a show?
We had this discussion with Joe Pulizzi. It doesn’t have to be either/or. As he said, “Business people are people, too.” In a B2B environment or a corporate environment, why do we have to check fun at the door? The one thing that was happening with me is that a lot of my guests would cut and say, “That was fun.” At first, I was like, “I don’t know if I like fun.” It’s not fun. Fun is going to a bar or something like that. I realized, “Don’t look a gift horse in the mouth.” If they’re telling you that they’re factor, I won’t use the B-word but if what’s connecting with them is fun, “I had fun doing this,” then lean into that. The thing that connects us all is hope, positivity, optimism, being a light, shining a light and helping other people’s light shine because it’s not about my light. I’m a vessel. Being able to go out there, I’m a bit of a geek. I want to reinvent the variety show in the streaming era. I want to be a voice for creators.There are two types of people in the world. There are pioneers and settlers. The pioneers get shot, and the settlers take the land. Click To Tweet
That’s what I want to tap into here. You called your Jaffe Coin, the Creator Coin. We consider podcasting a creator economy. Why does that interest you so much?
First of all, I am a creator but I wouldn’t have called myself one before. I was a content creator. As a creator, as in people that have chosen to create content for a living, to entertain for a living, that’s my definition of creators. They’re creators that have decided that this is not their side hustle but this is their hustle. This is their reason for being. What I realized especially going through Clubhouse and being exposed to people who weren’t like me, didn’t look like me, weren’t from the same places I came from. They didn’t have the same privilege I did that their voice was maybe as powerful or even more so but they didn’t have the same platform and opportunity.
I thought if I could be a conduit, play a small part, I’ve got a simple tagline, which somebody else’s added to and I wish I could remember who said it because I always love to give attribution. My tagline was, “Celebrate, elevate, compensate,” and added the advocate. Those are the four things now. One, it takes one to know one. I am a creator, too. I also do believe in the creative economy and the streaming era. I certainly believe in diversity, equity and inclusion. Now I have the possibility, potentially a way to bring all this together with the fourth pillar, crypto.
That’s one of the interests that I have. When I started in that crypto blockchain space, it was that idea of creator compensation and credit. You want to do attribution. All of that has a place in that blockchain economy. That’s what I was always looking at it for and intrigued me. I can’t let that go. There’s something about that and you dove in. You started your coin. You’re doing an interesting thing and that’s what I want to touch on right now. You’re doing this interesting thing where you’re combining your coin with a donation process. Hopefully, that’s going to help alleviate some of the external costs here that you’re going to be having to happen to you as you go through this heart surgery.
To explain it a little bit, the Creator Coin Initiative is an initiative that belongs to a company called Rally.io. It’s going to get a little weird now but they’re a company and well-funded by a16z, Andreessen Horowitz. They plan to dissolve the company once they’ve been able to get this initiative to be self-supporting and self-sustaining. They’re a new New Age company that isn’t trying to be 165 years in existence with oil paintings of old dead white guys in mahogany tables. They’re planning on moving on to the next project when they’ve been able to get this off. Their vision is not only to have thousands upon thousands of creators with Creator Coins but for it to be self-service.
At the moment, it’s invitation only and there’s a VIP process that backlog like you cannot believe. I was so fortunate enough to be offered a coin. I’m grateful. Eventually, every podcaster or anyone that wants to be able to create this universal currency, this token that allows them to build an economy and feed that economy. That’s where this initiative comes from. It’s because I have a pioneer mindset. I’ll tell you a little anecdote. A senior media person once came up to me. He said, “Joe, there are two types of people in the world. They’re pioneers and settlers. The pioneers get shot and the settlers take the land. You are a pioneer.” I was like, “Thanks a lot for nothing.”
“Thanks for saying that I’m going to get shot.”
“What’s that on my back? Someone stabbed me in the back again.” I love to be on that leading and bleeding edge. For me, I said, “Let me take my Creator Coin and let me create or let me see if I can explore a use case.” The use case is a GoFundMe. I was mindful and I still am to straddle or at least bridge the two extremes of Machiavellian opportunism, never waste a good crisis, which I hate that term, idea and desperation.
When I think about medical goals, my show and everything have to be set back for 4 to 6 weeks when I take a break, could I find a middle ground? The middle ground was the GoFundMe use case for Creator Coins that would be tied back to my show. I created a whole suite of rewards essentially like Kickstarter or Patreon-esque so each one includes the one before. There’s Have a Heart, Big Hearts, Heart of Gold, Heart to Heart. They all have the word heart in them but they’re all connected to the show.
From shoutouts, to supersize shoutouts, to cameos, to hanging out with me backstage, to sponsoring the show, to creating a way that I would create a custom one-hour show for a company that will be fully customized, personalized, branded. I felt that way even though people are supporting me and the work I’ve done to date and hopefully the work that I’m able to continue to do, they’re also getting a benefit of visibility and promotion through the show.
There’s a creative exchange there.
Why not? From a geek standpoint, if this use case of cause and I’m giving 10% of the proceeds to the Mitral Foundation, as well. There’s a charity angle. There’s a GoFundMe use case. If it all comes together, everyone will win.
We’re going to have to have you on again after you’re recovered so we can hear some more about it. You’ve got a lot of show shifts going on. Before we talk about that because I need to talk about what you’ve done in the past here so we can get to some of these five things that you think you’ve done right or some things that maybe you didn’t do right but you’ve got some tips on that. While we get to that, getting great guests, you have had some great guests on your show. How have you gone about getting them?
I have to give you the standard line, which is, “If I tell you, I would have to kill you.” One of the things that I committed to doing from the get-go is being transparent and helping people. People want to know what software and what mixer I’m using. The world needs more streamers, podcasters and creators especially from the ground up. There are a few pieces of advice that I would give. Number one, your first guest is your hardest guest and also your easiest guest.
You had access to yours. Your sister was there.
My sister was my easiest guest. Generally, when I say the hardest, what I mean by that is the second guest should be easier than the first and the third easier than the second. Why? Because you can go back and say, “These people will be on my show.” When I had Jamal Mashburn, James Rollins, Robin DiAngelo, Tom Peters and Seth Godin and Philip Kotler, it’s easy to go up to someone else now and dangle the FOMO little carrot and go, “These are the guests that have been on but if you don’t want to be on, that’s fine.” Suddenly, the perceived risk of coming on for them is so much lower now in terms of, “They must have known something that I didn’t or if they were, if they came on then I would want to be in their company.” What I would say is it’s the hardest bit but it’s also the easiest because everybody knows somebody. I knew my sister. I know my sister but everyone knows someone famous. If you don’t then you know someone who does.Your first guest is your hardest guest and also your easiest guest. Click To Tweet
Someone with a great story in the case of your sister.
Whether it’s starting with someone that’s calling in all your favors and I wouldn’t recommend that because you want to cut your teeth, you want to get better. You want to refine your craft. You want to put in your 10,000 hours. Everybody has a network and a Rolodex. Quite frankly, everyone has family and I’m not necessarily saying, “Get your brother or sister on,” but what I am saying is reach out to the people that have your back and ask them to help if you don’t have the network yourself. “Success begets success and momentum,” as Lou Diamond would say. The definition of thriving is onward and upward, which I also equated with movement and momentum. Keep moving, don’t stop, don’t atrophy, don’t standstill. That’s the momentum. That’s his definition of thriving, which is onward and upward.
The increasing audience, this is the one that I get. Everybody’s like, “I wish there was a magic bullet. How do I increase audience?” Are you doing something? Did you do something early on to try to grow that listener base?
My first book is called Built to Suck and that’s one area that I’m still sucking and struggling with. That’s why I feel I need the most help. I’ve been stuck in my bubble in my own social media containers and there’s a lot of post blindness. There’s a lot of algorithmic, nefarious, things going on that make it hard if you’re not paying to play. What I’ve realized is I’ve done a lot of experimentation. I’ve decided that my home is YouTube. I’m starting to promote episodes every day. I’m not spending too much money on it but enough to start getting the word out and getting the impressions in front of people in the right places and looking at metrics. The only metric I care about are subscribes on YouTube because that’s the ultimate demonstration of commitment. I don’t care to be honest with you about views. The main reason I don’t care is that I’m not at the moment interested in sponsorship.
I’m being honest, I’ve struggled with growth even though it’s my number one goal but when you are in a one-man band in my case or a one-person band, you can’t do it all, so I had to let it go. I had to say, “I want to focus on being the best possible host that I can be.” I’d rather focus on art rather than science. I’d rather focus on my craft than the business side but in year two, it’s time to shift. It’s time to make tough decisions. It’s time to have to kill some of the stuff that isn’t working as hard as it could be. These are gut-wrenching decisions but they have to be taken. I will share a piece of insight that I got early on. Someone said, “If you are starting a streaming show and you’re not prepared to commit at least two years of your life to it, stop now. Quit.” I looked at and I said, “Here I am. We’re several months into this little experiment, I still got time.” I’ve still got some time left to find my tipping point or to find the moment when the thing gets, hopefully, thrust or catapulted into the stratosphere. When that happens, I better be ready for it. I can promise you if I was focused on the short-term gain too soon, everything would have unraveled.
You’ve got a show that whether or not without even knowing your numbers, I can see that there had been growth because of the type of guests you have on and you’ve had to have a steady growth. Normally my next question is about producing like a pro. I don’t want you to tell me about your mixing board. I don’t that we can gain so much more information about how you prepare to interview the guests that you prepare. Not every host mixes their show or produces that but every host has to prepare for how they’re going to talk to their guests. How do you do that on such a professional level, Joe?
My advice is don’t try this at home because it’s not for everyone. I don’t have any notes because I don’t know what my guest is going to say. If I’ve got a list of questions, I’m not listening to them. I don’t care what they have to say. I’m like, “Great. Let’s move on to the next question.” I heard a great line from Natalie Nixon, who was my guest. She spoke about this concept called chaodic, which is an amalgamation of chaos and order. It’s a thing. It’s not a made-up word. There is a method to the madness is a way I would interpret chaodic.
What I do is I have Google Docs. I sent the Google Docs to my guests ahead of. I asked them 3 sets of 3 things. One, what’s on your mind? What do you want to talk about? That’s it. Two, what do you want to promote? Three, what are three fun facts about you? The three fun facts about them are the icebreaker. It’s a section that’s called Fun Facts. It breaks the ice. In some cases, I do these intentionally bad PhotoShops. I take their heads and put them on the bodies of lemmings and possums. If they hate possums, I’ll make them into a human possum but what it does is disarms them, especially the more famous they are, the better it works.
Sometimes I’ll skip it but another thing that’s so interesting about that is I remember having Bob Liodice who’s the head of the ANA. That’s the most powerful and biggest association of national advertisers. He says he’s a Trekkie. He’s a Star Trek fan. We ended up with this whole conversation about how Star Trek was ahead of its time in terms of teaching us about diversity and leadership. We ended up talking about that for eight minutes instead of ten seconds. In the three topics, I’ll do a little bit of work around them. Maybe I’ll get a Wikipedia screenshot or it’s an article that they wrote that they referenced. I’ll go in there and maybe the three points that are referenced in the article. I’ll go, “There were three points in this article. Let’s go through them one by one.” There’s a tiny little bit of structure but then I trust the process, myself, them and I let the conversation go.
You do a little soliloquy at the beginning. Are you preparing that ahead of time?
I write the soliloquy. It’s been interesting for me because when I keynote, I don’t have notes. It’s freeform and free-flowing. I’m deliberate in writing 300 to 400 words every day. I read it off a teleprompter because I want to be succinct. I want to make sure that every word is chosen and means something. With my intern, we were now going back and trying to capture every soliloquy.
I was hoping you were going to do that.
I have not missed one. I still can’t tell you what the first one was when the first one was or how many they are. I have an entire book. Maybe 300 pages of not daily monologues but monologues that can track back to what happened when George Floyd was murdered, when there was an insurrection, when I turned 50 my son had his Bar Mitzvah in quarantine on Zoom. Everything has context behind it now and who the guest was that day on the show and so now I’m thinking what I can do with it. One of the most important I swear, please, if you’re reading this, I’m about to give you a multimillion-dollar idea. Take notes and understand that the power of the content you create is in the archive.
It’s in the back catalog, that’s what we call it here.
Take copious notes. Don’t let the ideas dissipate. This is hard to do but while I’m doing the video interview and changing the camera angles, the banners, comments and everything. I’m also taking notes and time stamping everything. I typed them up afterward so I don’t lose the sparks and the insights as well. Part of your business model is going back and figuring out how you can connect the dots and remix the content. If I go back and look at the episodes now that I wasn’t taking notes. That’s the only regret I have. The regret that I didn’t start a lot of the rigor and discipline sooner.
It’s not too late. You can still have them transcribed. It’s so hard when you’ve got a daily show. It’s hard to catch up. You’re going to need a team for that, more interns. The fourth thing is encouraging engagement that we talked about all the time here on the show. You’ve got this engaging after an hour. How did you jumpstart that because the hardest part is getting that engagement going.The definition of thrive is onward and upward, which is equated with movement and momentum. Click To Tweet
Look at it at its simplest level and this is a quick answer. I believe in live. Pre-recorded has no interest for me. When I’m benchmarking my show, reinventing the talk show and the variety show in the streaming era, I am looking at the Fallons, Kimmels and Noahs of the world and none of them are alive and none of them are engaging their community. That’s what I believe can be my differentiation. That isn’t a binge factor. It’s not live anymore but in terms of engagement, there’s something about the excitement and the exhilaration of knowing it’s live. It’s something Lou says as well, which is, “It’s less important than being live. It’s more important knowing it was live.” The comments that come in now and then are also a way for hosts to cheat. If you’re going through a bit of a lull or you’re finding a bit of dead air, suddenly, it’s like, “He has a comment. Tracy had this to say.” You lean over to the guest and go, “What do you think about that?” It’s not just engaging people but it’s engaging yourself and your guests.
You weren’t focused on this ad model but you have to be thinking about how you keep supporting a show like this. What are your monetization plans?
The one thing that I did not push was traditional monetization. My first book was called Life After the 30-Second Spot. I don’t believe in traditional spray and pray, interruptive and poorly targeted. That’s my enemy. It has a place but that’s not the first place I’m going to look. I started to think about what I called at the time Corona Corporate, which is being able to do my show for a corporate, HR, training and development, capabilities and internal comms. That has been my primary audience to find several clients that want to turn their next Zoom into boom. It’s what I call the Greatest Zoom on Earth. That’s been one way. The other way has been trying to monetize but also embedded with the Creator Coin.
Sponsoring but also building the Jaffe Economy and being able to figure out ways to activate that economy. I’m interested in that as a means of monetization. Ultimately, as the show grows or continues to grow, yes, there will be some more familial ways to monetize using media 101s or media best practices. For me, it’s all about me growing personally and my community. I don’t care about the advertising. If I’m able to do that and do a great job of it, as you would call it, the binge factor.
If I can create something that people miss, it’s the classic thing when I was doing the show that at the same time every day and one day, I was late or my guest canceled, I started getting emails, “Are you okay?” “Everything okay?” That’s when you know that you’re on the right path. Do I have all the answers figured out? Not even close but it’s more important knowing that I’m on the right path. It’s the journey that I’m on. It’s the journey versus the destination but at least it’s knowing that I’m on the right path because there’s no point in a journey where you’re completely lost in the outer sea.
What do you believe the binge factor is for you?
I don’t know. Maybe I’ve said it. Maybe I haven’t. I don’t know. Maybe it’s the fact that it’s having fun. It’s learning something and being inspired. The first answer is maybe all of the above and maybe it’s none of the above. It probably lies somewhere, at least in terms of the new direction of the show, in terms of those four buckets, crypto, creative economy, streaming era and the diversity, equity and inclusion angle. I will tell you that my mother in South Africa watches every episode. We have a retiree in South Carolina who watches every episode and my mother-in-law in Israel watches every episode. I’ve got people from my industry who watch every episode. I’ve got Tom, the philosopher.
If I can have people who are not of marketing, enjoying marketing, content and learning and if I can have people that are of marketing, not feeling that it’s been dumbed down, I feel like the binge factor or that X-factor is some way there. They’re saying that you’ve created a crossover between a business and marketing show and something that is generally interesting and cool. Probably the best example of that is Malcolm Gladwell’s The Tipping Point. It’s a business book. It doesn’t read like a business book. You’re finding out stories about Sesame Street and Hush Puppies. They’re interesting stories. Yet, it’s a business book. it doesn’t feel like a boring, self-serving business book. What do you think it is?
Your binge factor is in this place of Smart Stamina because that’s what you’re doing here. You don’t have this dumbed down it. There’s nothing dumbed down about where you start with your guests. You let them dive in at their level and if people don’t know who they are, they’re going to get the story somewhere along the way. You’ve got lots of time to cover it but you aren’t worried about doing this in that one-on-one way of, “Let’s do your origin story and let’s do this.”
It doesn’t come from that and part of it is the structure that you’ve created. You’ve created this monologue soliloquy structure that sets the tone for the entry into the conversation. You are starting, that term, in a milieu where you’re starting in the middle. You’re starting in the conversation already because they’ve been listening to that. That has this interesting model of creating this smarter show where it’s still fun and interesting. We have this smarter, a little bit more intellectual view of a talk show, which can be dumbed down in other use.
I’m going to have to watch this again because you nailed it for me, this idea of smart stamina because even smart stamina is a crossover. It is a hybrid between the brain and the brawn. That’s true. The word gets, the word can be overused and sometimes people don’t love it but there is a realness and authenticity to being true to myself. Never compromise me but also never compromise my audience as well. I love what you said there in terms of being able to find this unique angle. I’ve been using that phrase a lot lately, crossover, because I like the idea. Crossover artists are bridge builders and that’s what I like. If you’re a bridge builder, you’re also a translator. Someone else said to me that part of the art is in the framing and the reframing and the ability to create connections. I love doing it.
I don’t think you’re a pioneer when you were talking about pioneers. I see you more as that bridge builder, which I always see come behind the pioneers. The pioneers go out there. They are fiercely blazing trails, without looking behind. They don’t care. They’re like, “You follow me because I know what I’m doing. I’ve got this. I’ve got the vision but there’s somebody who comes behind them, builds the train line, the bridges and the use case.” That’s you, Joe.
Good because I want to take the land. I want to be a settler for one.
You do it and you show people how brilliant it can be. That’s who you are, Joe.
Thank you for saying that. That is kind. If we’ve learned anything from these last few years is life is short. The only thing that matters is health. Look at me and what I’m going through as well. If I or we needed any reminders. I’m going to say as well, which is for every person born in 1970, get your annual general physical. There’s a reason they call it the annual physical. Take care of yourself, your physical and mental health. It’s so important more than ever. This murmur, which found out that I had a severe prolapse in my mitral valve, was picked up in my physical with my primary care physician applying a stethoscope to my chest. Doing something that even he might have said, “Breathe in, breathe out,” and you’re on your way.
We were phoning in the medicine. The fact that you went in to go get that checked, good for you and you’re right. More of us need to do that.
That’s important. Make the most of the time you have. There’s something as well that even I wrote in Built to Suck, which is, “Embrace your mortality.” Instead of feeling debilitated, hamstrung or paralyzed, it’s like carpe diem. Being a creator, you live every day because there is youthful exuberance, exhilaration type or whatever you want to call it. That comes from not being able to, by definition, create something that didn’t exist before but to do it with others, the collaboration and in service of others. How lucky am I to be doing this?
Before we go, we teased it. We got to talk about it. You’re going to go and having your heart surgery. You’re going to be off for 4 to 6 weeks. Is the show going to happen during the hiatus? Are you going to record? Is nothing going to happen? Is it going to come back anew?If you are starting a streaming show, and you're not prepared to commit at least two years of your life to it, stop now. Just quit. Click To Tweet
I’m launching the show. By all means, I’m easy to contact. If you’ve read this, if it has inspired you, you can easily contact me on social media. I’m @JaffeJuice on everything. Hopefully, to say this show was valuable to you.
Wish him well.
Please. That’ll be awesome. I hope I will be well. I’ll take all of your wishes. The other thing is, I thought a few people said, “I’ll host your show while you’re gone now.” That’s a tell that the show is valuable enough that they would want to host it but I’ve decided to take a break. As the Tony Robbins saying goes, “Life is not what happens to you. Life is what happens for you.” This is a sign that I’m meant to slow down and take a break. I haven’t taken a break since March of 2020. Look at what’s working and look at what isn’t and come back stronger, invigorated and fresh again. I can say this because the new name will be announced. Are you ready for it?
I’m ready for it. I’m excited to hear it.
I’m going to tell you the story behind it. Bruce Turkel was a guest on my show. He has an amazing marketing genius mind. He was one of my guests but now we’re having a zoom and having a cocktail. He’s like, “You have to change the name of your show.” I’m like, “Do I? Isn’t Corona like a crown? It’s light, a halo and it’s hope.” He’s like, “It’s like calling your show 9/11 TV.” He said that and I went, “You’re right.”
His point was without being flippant about it, which is at the time, you’re in it and it’s a part of you. At some point, people want to put it in their rearview mirror. It’s an appropriate conversation, he might as well have been asking what my bench factor was. Maybe this is the answer. He said, “What makes you different?” I was like, “I’ve got a funny accent and I’m a crossover.” He was like, “There are lots of people with accents. What makes you different? What’s truly different about the show?” I said, “The show’s not about me. It’s never been about me. It’s about my guests. I changed my background and my green screen. Everything is about my guest.” He said, “Tell me more.”
I said, “If I’m ever fortunate enough to get an agent or a manager, I will give them only one brief, which is if somebody wants me on their podcast or their show and maybe they’ve started it, say it’s their first episode. They don’t even have a single viewer or listener. If you say no to them, I’ll fire you on the spot because that is my commitment to helping other people.” He said, “The new name of your show is Joseph Jaffe is Not Famous.” When I say it, it’s about who the next guest is. It’s not about me, it’s about them. It’s about you as well. It’s fun, irreverent and there’s a joke.
Everybody can get the joke. That’s the other part of it.
I don’t even have to explain what the joke is. I love it. Talk about active experimentation. It’s risky. I could have gone with The Jaffe Show. My coin is called Jaffe, the Jaffe Coin. I am Jaffe. My email address is Jaffe@JaffeJuice.com. I was like, “This feels right. It feels like a variety show.”
I’m glad you decided on that because it is a great variety show name because there’s a history and variety show of having The Carol Burnett Show right to having the person’s name on it. That in of itself, though, is so in some way self-focused that you don’t have that as a part of your show. It’s not who you are. It wouldn’t work because we see that again and again here. We’ve launched more shows. The shows named after the host do significantly worse than shows that are named something else. That being said, a show with a joke title the play on that’s eye-catching, ear-catching. You want to find out more about that. That is going to make me stop.
It’s the opposite, The Joseph Jaffe show is all about me but Joseph Jaffe is not famous. Did you just Jedi mind trick me?
Your geek is coming out like mine does all the time.
It’s fun. Ironically, it does come back to that word that started coming back. I’m referencing Joe Pulizzi a lot because he was on my show. The quote from that I remember clearly and I’ve taken notes as you know, is this concept of, this is a thing. What he was referencing was, he has this book in front. It was the color orange. What else? I can’t find the box at the moment but everything about him is orange. What he realized, at some point, stumbling into it was that he was talking about how he did this event, in Belgium. It was a black-tie event. He was wearing his tuxedo and people came up to him and said, “Why aren’t you wearing orange?”Take copious notes. Don’t let the ideas dissipate. Click To Tweet
This is the thing. In marketing, they say perception is reality. When I do a lot of mentoring of founders, I always say to them, “You are what I say you are,” I meaning the consumer. They would pitch to me and I go, “You’re the Uber meets Waze of charitable donations.” I’m like, “We’re not that.” No, you are the Uber meets ways of that. The fact that my mind has made the connection, which is a clear one and triangulated you into that place indicates that something is sticking. For me, it came back to this idea of saying fun. This can be fun as well. We can learn, be educated, inspired and we can do it without being bored to tears.
That is your show no matter whether it’s called CoronaTV or Joseph Jaffe is Not Famous, which I cannot wait for the start of.
My Next Guest is, which hopefully will be you soon.
I would love to be on your show. Our hearts are with you that you’re recovering. Your heart is recovering well. We’ll look forward to the relaunch. Everyone will be able to connect with us through TheBingeFactor.com because we will have all the ways to reach Joe Jaffe. Joseph Jaffe, thank you for coming to the show. I’m so glad Lou connected us.
I owe him so much. It all came from being open. My story was I heard him in a room in Clubhouse. It was a speaker room, etc. I was there. I didn’t have to feel the need to be on this stage and talk and talk. I was listening. I was like, “This guy seems like a good guy and he’s smart.” I clicked on his bio and I saw him at a show. I reached out to him saying, “Let’s do a swap.” You’ll be a guest on my show. I’ll be a guest on your show. Now is a brother from another mother.
A recipe for success.
Because of him, I met you.
Thank you, Joe. I’m so glad to have you here. We’ll have to have you back after the new show has had some traction and we can hear how it goes.
I look forward to it.
I know that was so jam-packed with great advice and processes that Joe goes through with how he produces a show and what he’s thinking about. A lot of intellectual and unpacking thoughts about how he is structuring your show, what he’s building, how he’s growing it and shifting it. He’s got much going on both on the show and off the show as he is structuring this. He is all in as he said in this. He is all in and it is coming through in a great show. It is a shame if this is the show that is not listened to. There’s much out there for all of you marketing geeks, all of you out there who want to learn more about marketing and entrepreneurship. You want to hear these deeper dive conversations than we get on a lot of shows. We’re skimming the surface and that’s why I didn’t shorten this episode.
I let Joe talk because there’s so much learned information that I wanted to pull out of him. I wanted to make sure that we got him to share so you could learn from that so you can thrive on that and turn it into something that works for your show. Turn it into something that you can apply and you can use. There is much more of that on his show. You’re going to want to check out CoronaTV but you’re also going to want to check it because, as we heard, it’s got a new name Joseph Jaffe is Not Famous but his next guest is and we’re going to want to hear who those next guests are.
You can go to TheBingeFactor.com. You’ll be able to connect up with Joe. You’ll be able to find them everywhere on social media. Please, go and help him. Wish him well. I hope that he is in full recovery, surrounded by the love of his family and the love of all of us here who’ve gotten a chance to meet him, be guests on his show and have him as guests on our show. Go out there and share that love back with him.
If you learn something from the show, go let him know because that’s the only thing some of us podcasters have here. Some live streamers have that audience feedback when you take the time to let us know that you shared something brilliant with us so go lead show share. Go let Joe know that you learned something from him that he shared something brilliant with them and wish them well. Thanks for reading. I’ll be back next time with another binge factor.
- Life After the 30-Second Spot
- Join the Conversation
- Flip the Funnel
- Built to Suck: The Inevitable Demise of Corporation…and How to Save It?
- Lou Diamond – Past Episode
- Joe Pulizzi – CoronaTV 8.27 – The King of Content
- second time – Content Inc with Joe Pulizzi
- Tom Morris – TWTW April 19-22 with co-host, Tom Morris
- Mitral Foundation
- Jamal Mashburn – CoronaTV 9.18 – The Baskentrepreneur
- James Rollins – CoronaTV 8.26 – The Novelist
- Robin DiAngelo – From Non-Racism to Anti-Racism to Nice-Racism
- Tom Peters – Excellence Now: Extreme Humanism
- Seth Godin and Philip Kotler – Who Would You Want to Meet Most in the World?
- Natalie Nixon – The Creativity Leap
- The Tipping Point
- @JaffeJuice – Instagram
- Bruce Turkel – CoronaTV 7.6 – The Connoisseur
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