Podcasting for Entrepreneurs – How to Cut Through the Noise

Written by on February 2, 2024

(Left to Right) Chris Colbert, Founder and CEO of DCP Entertainment, Anabella Poland, General Manager of 90.3 WMSC-FM & John McDermott, Co-Founder of Caloroga Shark Media.

“Podcasting for Entrepreneurs – How to Cut Through the Noise” is a Montclair Starts Up event aimed to guide entrepreneurs in navigating the podcasting landscape, offering insights from industry experts on creating engaging content, building a loyal audience, and monetizing podcasts. Moderated by Anabella Poland, MBA, the panel-style program gathered three key experts in the area: Chris Colbert, Founder and CEO of DCP Entertainment; Farnoosh Torabi, financial Expert and host of “So Money” podcast and John McDermott, Co-Founder of Caloroga Shark Media.

The event was a collaboration between the Feliciano Center for Entrepreneurship and WMSC FM.


Summary of event:

Opening remarks by Liz Rich, Director of the Feliciano Center for Entrepreneurship and Innovation.
Excitement about the first Montclair starts up event for 2024 on podcasting for entrepreneurs.

Upcoming Events and Initiatives:

Introduction of a new women entrepreneurship workshop series launching in March.
Emphasis on extending the conversation around women’s entrepreneurship throughout the year.
Announcement about forthcoming events and initiatives in 2024.

Acknowledgment and Introduction of Moderator:

Expressing gratitude to Annabella Poland, General Manager of Montclair State University’s WMSC FM, and acknowledgment of her significant contributions.
Highlighting Annabella’s diverse career, teaching podcast production, and leadership in various media roles.

Podcast Panel Introductions:

Brief introduction by Annabella Poland of the panelists, including Farnoosh Torabi, Chris Colbert, and John McDermott.
Overview of each panelist’s background, experience, and contributions to the podcasting space.

Panelist Elevator Pitches:

Each panelist provides a quick one-minute elevator pitch introducing themselves and their respective podcasts.
– Farnoosh Torabi: Financial expert, author, and host of the So Money podcast.
– Chris Colbert: CEO and founder of DCP Entertainment, emphasizing representation in podcasting.
– John McDermott: Co-founder of Kalaroga Shark Media, specializing in short-form podcasting.

Origins and Motivations for Podcasting:

Insights from Farnoosh Torabi on her entry into podcasting in 2014, driven by a desire for something new and the flexibility of the platform.
Chris Colbert’s journey from a career in radio to podcasting, focusing on creating opportunities for underrepresented communities.
John McDermott’s transition from traditional audio formats to podcasting, highlighting the appeal of creating content in a new medium.

Technical Aspects and Equipment:

Discussion on the evolving landscape of podcasting equipment, dispelling the notion of requiring expensive setups.
Examples of starting with basic equipment, such as USB microphones and MacBooks, highlighting the simplicity of the process.
Anecdotes about unconventional recording spaces, like closets, during the pandemic.

Building an Audience:

Emphasis on playing to the hits and focusing on popular topics within a niche audience.
Strategies for leveraging social media platforms, with YouTube and TikTok mentioned as effective tools for audience growth.
The importance of cross-promotion by appearing on other podcasts to tap into existing listener bases.

Promotional Vehicles and Editorial Calendar:

Examples of promotional strategies, including repurposing podcast content into articles for websites, creating hyperlinks to drive traffic.
John McDermott’s emphasis on leveraging current events, timely topics, and an editorial calendar to plan podcast content strategically.

Audience Engagement and Trends:

Anecdotal evidence of significant download spikes following relevant and timely content, such as Taylor Swift-related episodes.
Insights into monitoring trends, predicting what might resonate with audiences, and adjusting content accordingly.

1. Monetization Strategies:

Farnoosh Torabi discusses how nichifying her audience, understanding demographics, and engaging with listeners allowed her to monetize through advertising, brand partnerships, and additional services like investing courses.
Chris Colbert emphasizes freelancers in the industry offering services beyond podcasting, such as editing, marketing, and consulting.
John McDermott shares challenges faced by podcasters due to external factors like Apple’s changes impacting download numbers.

2. Content Creation Strategies:

John McDermott explains his daily short-form approach, considering everything in life as potential show prep, and his editing process.
Farnoosh Torabi focuses on playing the long game, engaging the audience with thematic weeks, and soliciting questions for a weekly Q&A.
Chris Colbert stresses the importance of making the audience feel connected, encouraging them to recommend topics or guests.

3. Future Strategies:

Chris Colbert suggests adapting to changes and considering podcasting as an extension of digital influencing.
Farnoosh Torabi mentions testing new approaches, like putting archived shows behind a paywall.

4. Audience Engagement:

The speakers discuss engaging the audience by addressing their preferences, involving them in the content creation process, and creating a sense of connection.

5. Challenges and External Factors:

John McDermott highlights challenges faced by podcasters, such as unexpected changes in download metrics due to platform adjustments.
The overall conversation emphasizes the importance of understanding the audience, adapting to changes, and creatively monetizing podcasts while maintaining engagement with listeners.


A. Overview of the discussion on entrepreneurship and podcasting
B. Questioning the suitability of podcasting for cash-strapped entrepreneurs

II. Building a Following on Social Media
A. Chris Colbert’s perspective on starting with social media
B. Advantages of reaching audiences on social media before launching a podcast
C. Importance of gauging interest with minimal resources

III. Choosing the Right Platform
A. Farnoosh Torabi’s advice on selecting a platform based on personal preferences
B. Noah Kagan’s recommendation to start where one spends the most time
C. Emphasizing the need to understand the language and culture of the chosen platform

IV. Challenges of Podcasting
A. John McDermott’s insight on the initial subpar quality of early podcast episodes
B. Discussion on the high dropout rate within the first month
C. Encouragement to continue despite challenges and view failures as part of the process

V. Defining Goals for Monetization
A. Importance of defining goals and creating a roadmap for success
B. Promo swaps as a strategy for audience expansion and monetization
C. AI’s role in enhancing podcast creation and streamlining promotional tasks

VI. Trends in Podcasting for 2024
A. AI’s impact on transcription, show notes, and promotional material
B. Caution about the potential loss of cultural nuances in AI translation tools
C. The versatility of podcasting as a content creation tool

VII. Audience Questions
A. Balancing podcasting with business for entrepreneurs
B. Improving audio quality in a store setting
C. Strategies for monetization and achieving success in podcasting