675- Renaissance man five times over into podcasting

In this episode, we bring to life yet another impromptu discussion and description of how Sgt. Fred has been a Renaissance Man four times over in life — and now five — and now is in his next Renaissance during his life — and all these are part of the story given in the accounts of his other podcast (which is still in the making) called the Real Academy of Life.


The stages of life which Sgt. Fred underwent a Renaissance experience were the following:

  • From a high school student worker and academic scholar to become an award-winning dramatic actor and public speaker;
  • From a University student to become a fraternity brother who improved the fraternity organization;
  • From a depressed and mixed-up student to become a military man that became an Airborne Paratrooper and combat infantryman in the jungles, rice paddies and mountains of Vietnam during the war;
  • From a veteran student joining the university world again to finish his degrees (both BA and MBA) to become a part-time faculty member of a university, as well as a dancer with a professional dance group (including a 10-year stint as a university dance instructor) — and then going out and becoming a serial entrepreneur in the area of the techno-industrial environment;
  • From the veteran retiree in corporate America as a corporate instructor and professional podcaster and new media content creator  (where he had 16 podcast shows in 2006 to 2020, including The Struggling  Entrepreneur, Podcast Reporter, the 2030 Podcast, Grumpy Old Bears, and 10 other podcasts) — and especially with those who influenced him, such as Adam Curry and Dave Jackson;
  • and the final Renaissance that is now in the beginning stages of being a retired podcaster and interviewer.

However, these experiences do NOT wipe away nor ignore the feelings of both shame and guilt from the memory of Sgt. Fred, as well as the feelings of regret in the area of personal relationships.

With a more mature outlook on life — both past and present and possible future — Sgt. Fred will continue in the podosphere for both his current podcast shows, as well as new episodes in his REAL ACADEMY OF LIFE.

Copyright (c) 2024, Matrix Solutions Corporation and


672- The new Alaric will lead the fall of the Republic

In this episode that will be posted in 4 shows:

  •; and

Matt Cox and myself, Sgt. Fred will deliver to you our premonitions about both the status and possible future of the UK due to the concerns of the royalty, as well as here in the USA in this year of terrible corruption by the government, the agencies and the media.

Here are some of the items that we shall cover in our casual discussion, which is unrehearsed and thoughtful:

  • How the democrat party and those candidates that are sponsored by it are just like the evil players in the Orwell stories, both Animal Farm and 1984;
  • How Bo-Jiden and the democrats are like Alaric (i.e., Flavius Alaricus), and how they can possibly cause the downfall and “sacking” of the USA and its goodness and great ideas brought to the world stage by the founding fathers (n.b.: for a summary and image of Alaric, go to this URL:;
  • Also, the democrats and BoJiden are like the “chief” — i.e., Rudolf the Boss (known as the CHIEF)– in the 1936 movie called Things to Come, in which the only thing that mattered was the tyranny of the leader like BoJiden, who was so delusional that he ruined the state of the known world and wanted only to remain in power by taking away the rights of the citizens by having constant warfare;
  • The status of Prince William and his bride, the Princess of Wales, and a possible future with him as future king;
  • The possible future for Harry Windsor as probable regent;
  • The attempt by Camilla to usurp power and the throne;
  • How the state of Texas in the USA is fighting to uphold the laws of the USA re: immigration, especially with the flood of democrat supported illegals flooding the country;
  • the attempt to call illegal aliens “newcomers” (since “dreamers” has gone by the wayside);
  • the attempt by democrat governors to usurp private property and allow squatters to live in private property homes;
  • the ridiculous attempt by the democrats to take a quote out of context and surround it with their own placed context from a delivery by Trump about only the AUTO INDUSTRY;
  • the attempt by democrats to confiscate firearms with the new “red flag” laws recently passed;
  • the news about the Podcast Movement–Evolutions conference in downtown Los Angeles, and our thoughts about NOT attending it in person (mainly due to crime in that area, as well as the conference now turning almost completely woke);
  • the attempt by BoJiden to sign the UN small arms treaty, thus banning firearms altogether — and how this is unconstitutional against the 2nd amendment;
  • the attempt by BoJiden and democrats to register prisoners and inmates to vote, as well as university students — in the attempt to stuff the ballot box with illegal votes, not to mention the illegal aliens now being given voting rights in states like New York;
  • the order from Bo-Jiden to protect incumbent bureaucrats by making it more difficult, if not impossible, to fire them — of course, after the democrats put them in their jobs in the next 10 months;
  • the enormous publicity about the eclipse and the over-reaction by the media;
  • how Greta Thunberg has reared her ugly head again at the Hague to protest in the name of climate change — and that she was arrested;
  • The new theme of climate change being linked to human rights violations (e.g., Switzerland and Greta T.) and how ridiculous this case tends to show violation of rights because of climate change;
  • To add comical relief, how Taylor Swift has announced that she is pregnant with Travis Kelce’s baby — nice role model for parents???
  • For a dark similarity, BoJiden is hidden and remains apart, since his handler and puppertmaster, Obama, does not want him to say anything to the press or to debate; and also, just like Hitler was in his underground bunker in 1945, BoJiden remains in hiding as he is either asleep or “on vacation” in the northeast, totally aloof from the world and delusional, thus allowing his Obama-handlers to manipulate the press and pull his strings — so when will this manipulation all end?
  • Thank you for listening
  • Copyright Matrix Solutions Corporation, 2023 and All rights reserved.

636- Podcasting and the bucket list

In this episode of The Podcast Reporter Podcast Show, we deliver a repurposed episode from The Struggling Biz podcast show that deals with entrepreneurship and the decisions that one makes when he reaches his twilight years — including that of creating and trying to accomplish the tasks on a bucket list.

But from our point of view, we can expand this to the elements of creating and publishing podcasts, as well as the quest for successful monetization as an entrepreneur.

We then look at several themes when we come to a crossroads of deciding what to pursue after we have a reflection on the value of future life considerations for ourselves, especially when we get signs to warn us of possible tiredness.

And some of these signs may be:

  • feelings of medical situations that come with older age;
  • tiredness from the “routine” of getting projects completed or getting them set up;
  • the feelings of frustration and anger that result from dealing with impossible clients or partners — especially from the younger “whipper-snappers” that keep telling you that they know more than yourself and even make fun of you as the older generation that is outdated;
  • the desire to expand your experiences and include time in your life to investigate and live your “bucket list”; and
  • the reflections of accomplishments in your life and their importance vs. looking forward and seeing what is really important when you reach a specific point in your twilight years…
  • and other factors.

Now, for podcasters, it has been a roller-coaster ride of excitement and joy and thrills and even of financial success for the last 18 years of the podosphere. However, we need to stop and reflect on where we are, and if we happen to be in what we call our “twilight years,” then the reflection may be a great value that can help us produce podcasts shows that provide more value to our audience — and perhaps more to ourselves.

For myself, I have taken a road (not necessarily a “pivot” as mentioned in the book by Eric Reis called The Lean Startup) that has made me create the start of my life memoirs — but NOT as a book, but rather as a podcast show or episodes called The Real Academy of Life. And here, I can create chapters in audio for those who wish to follow me or consume my content on the areas of my life that I have deemed of value to myself and the listener. In fact, I have even delayed in creating a separate podcast show up to this point and just repurposed the episodes within with the prefix RAL-.

So please use the embedded audio player to consume the content from my other podcast that dealt with “The struggling entrepreneur and the bucket list.”:

I am sure that this topic may have you consider putting together a bucket list for your own actions which you feel you need to experience in a plan that will improve the satisfaction of your life.

In fact, you may want to create some episodes in your podcast shows that will describe your decisions, your list of items in the bucket list, and the reflections in creating and accomplishing them, as well as the final value that they provided for you.

Thank you for your attention.

Copyright (c) 2022, Matrix Solutions Corporation and and Eric Reis and The Lean Startup and bucket list. All rights reserved.


598- Major podcast projects left in your lifetime

In this episode of The Podcast Reporter show, we deliver an episode from another podcast show of mine called The Struggling Biz. So we are repurposing this episode that deals with the theme of planning major projects for you during the rest of your lifetime.

As you will hear in this repurposed audio episode, my major projects remaining in my own lifetime experience are PODCASTS. And so here are the shownotes from the repurposed original podcast episode:

We reflect on a theme propagated by podcaster, Todd Henry, of the show called The Accidental Creative. This theme was that of deciding which big projects you should select and complete — because there are only so many of them you can do with the remaining years of your life. So you may understand this, the average time for a large project in your life — be it business or personal — is about 5 years in length.

Or better put, as Todd states in an episode released in December of 2021:

“Michael Bungay Stanier is a force of nature. My recent interview with him about How To Begin really made me think. We can take on about one big project every five years or so, which means you can subtract your current age from the average lifespan, divide by 5, and figure out how many more big things you can take on. Really makes you think about where you’re spending your time and energy. (By the way, I likely have about 5-6 big projects left in me. You?)”

Well, this made me think about my own situation as an entrepreneur and especially the business projects (including podcasting and screencasting, which are driving my business revenue at present) that I currently have or am planning to have and launch in the near future.

Well, for myself, I remember when I was in elementary school back in the 1950s, and the teacher drilled into our heads that the average lifespan for someone like me was 71 years. Well, thank goodness that I have surpassed that time, as I am now living on what seems to be “borrowed time.” And the several projects that I have currently are several, which have been long-term and going on for 10 years or more. They deal with me as a content creator and consultant for screencasting, videocasting, New Media content creation and podcasting, etc.

And when I look at the future, I know that I only have 2 to 4 more large projects left under the definition given earlier (even that would be a stretch at my age). So what do I do and how can I plan to do the best and maximize my ideas, my project goals and my business and my life? Well, I already stopped my journey to get my PhD. in International Marketing (and I was at the dissertation stage when I had to stop, due to problems that I had to deal with in my family — and that was a major project that will never be completed by myself).

The podcast and video content creation

I had in my plans since 2019 to create and launch 2 more personal podcast shows:

  • The Real Academy of Life show — which would be the equivalent of memoirs and my perspective on my life in the future and in the past, with accomplishments and setbacks, but with a satisfaction of having delivered my success stories and weaknesses that would give me a type of fulfillment and closure. This would be free-form and not subject to a rigorous schedule. As a matter of fact, I had even prepared an episode to capture my thoughts about this and become energized to plan and launch this show in details:

and also,

  • — this was to be a podcast show that would highlight my experiences as a podcaster and screencaster and video content creator (insofar as tutorials, training videos and commercial videos). And at the time of this publication, it may be that the domain has been relinquished, due to non-launching of the show.

So, according to the formula that is highlighted by Todd Henry in his podcast episode, I would have to first end the current 2 projects that I have now — and these should be completed in about 2 to 3 years. Then I would have to allocate another 10 years (5 years for each major project planned) in order to complete the other major projects in my mind.

According to the calculations, I would reach age 85 by the time that these major shows would be launched and completed. Now, for someone who is suffering from medical complications from results of exposure to Agent Orange (as well as the mental problems caused by PTSD, stemming from my days as a combat infantryman and paratrooper when I was a machine-gunner in the Vietnam War), I seriously doubt that I will reach that age before I expire. As the age-old saying goes: “I am living on borrowed time.”

Thus, I did take a look and see what would be realistically available insofar as time left in my life (as well as energy and enthusiasm and euphoria) in order for me to look forward to  completing these current projects in which I am engaged in my business, as well as starting and finishing these other 2 projects.

My summary about this exercise that I did was that it is, indeed,  of great value. I feel that this could be very beneficial to every entrepreneur and bring him down to a level of reality to clearly see what remains for dreams and projects to be imagined, to be planned, to be started and launched, and to be possibly completed — for the self-satisfaction and closure is something that I feel would definitely be worth it for your life and your business.

I sincerely hope that you undergo such an exercise to look inside yourself and see what major projects you can plan, and which ones would be realistic for your life span — I am sure that your high priority projects would deliver the best results in satisfaction and closure for you.

Thank you for your attention.

Copyright (c) 2021, Matrix Solutions Corporation and and Todd Henry and All rights reserved.


526- Lessons learned after 15 years of Podcasting

In this episode of The Podcast Reporter, we discuss my own lessons learned and experiences of value gained from podcasting for the last 15 years, when I became a podcaster — with having been within the podosphere as a listener for the prior 2 years (and with listening to over 100 podcast shows per week, as there were not as many shows as there are now).

In a recent edition of the newsletter, we had an article that spoke about what experiences and benefits were learned by someone who had just celebrated seven years in podcasting (you can find it at Bruce Wawrzyniak, the host of Now Hear This who celebrated his 7th anniversary of the show with 367 episodes). Well, as a podcaster with over double the time in the podosphere as an active podcaster, and with over 1000 episodes and 2 million downloads, I wanted to also give you some perspective of an old-timer podcaster.

Now, by old-timer, I don’t mean to state that I was one of the original podcasters when the podosphere started. By no means. There were folks like Gary Leland, Todd Cochrane, CC Chapman, Paul Colligan, Rob Walch and Dave Jackson (among others) that already had podcast shows — and some for almost 2 years since 2004. Among them, I seemed to be a newcomer. And my podcast show that I promoted at the time of the early Podcast and Portable Media conference seemed pale in comparison to the work of those earlier maestros.

But now, after 15 years of podcasting, my current flagship podcast show of has between 500 and 600 episodes; my other show of has over 100 episodes; and my other podcast show of has over 50 episodes — and the latter is done with a co-host, Matt Cox (a podcaster with over 12 years of his show, Brunch with the

So the question is: what experiences have I learned from podcasting in 15 years? and what is the suggestion that I deliver to new and aspiring podcasters (even though these will never be posted in the newsletter)?

  • I have learned that technical skills are important, but that they are not the most important — what is of greatest importance is the value that your show and its episodes will provide to your audience;
  • I have learned that your communication with your audience is critical — and that goes for any planned or unplanned absences (remember — even great podcasters like Daniel J Lewis of The Audacity to Podcast show disappeared for almost six months without leaving word to his audience of any planned or unplanned absence.  But he later made up for it by publishing an episode explaining his forced absence, and then proceeded to return to the podosphere in many formats. And he keeps being a subject matter expert in his own right);
  • I have received value in the faith and commitment of my audience in staying with me, providing me with feedback and commentary, as well as giving word-of-mouth promotion to others in the podosphere;
  • I have received value in seeing the number of downloads increasing for each show (in fact, both The Struggling Entrepreneur podcast show — which has podfaded — and this show have had over 1 million downloads each, and still growing), as well as the popularity of my shows increasing;
  • I have received value when our show received promotion on an international live stream — they played episodes from this show to their audiences; they stated that this was a “quality show” to the audience; and they praised the quality of the audio, as well, to their audience and live stream. And they did this WITHOUT any requests from me or any paid promotion or marketing or sales. This occurred because they found value in the show; and as of the date of this episode, it still continues to be published with various episodes and still continues to receive admiration from listeners who found value in the content of this show, even though none of the serendipity results were planned;
  • I found value in other podcasters whom I have met in person or on the web — either a conferences or in remote interviews which I conducted for many of my 16 concurrent podcast shows that I had in 2010, and which I had to whittle down due to health and personal family issues with which I had to deal in 2016 to 2018;
  • and finally, I learned that the VALUE FOR VALUE model applies to podcasters who deliver good content to listeners. I learned this when the value was “treasure” (i.e., monetization), as well as “tech” (i.e., learning valuable technical skills and models), as well as “frienship” value (i.e., starting great relationships with the pundits of podcasting and other podcasters).

And these are just a few of the lessons learned from this podcaster in my 15 years as a podcaster and 17 years within the podosphere.

So, if you think that seven years is a lot of time to learn about value in podcasting, try learning from the podcasters who have spent more than double that time within their craft. This will help deliver lessons learned to the new and aspiring podcasters, so that they can improve their skills and become better deliverers of value to their audiences.

Thank you for your attention.

Copyright (c) 2021, Matrix Solutions Corporation and and and Matt Cox. All rights reserved.


539- How podfaded show episodes can help your podcasts

In this episode of The Podcast Reporter, we discuss the theme posted by Evo Terra recently in his podcast show, Podcast Pontifications. It dealt with the suggestions of podfaded shows — and the benefits you can derive by re-posting content to see what automatic activity occurs when you monitor the results.

In addition to this, he also mentioned that you can revitalize your podcast or give the podfaded show new life to continue — or even to give you, the podcaster, the new energy and excitement and passion to start a new show and continue in the podosphere with the same or more enthusiasm you had when you first entered podcasting. As Evo states in his written transcript posted in his email newsletter about the episode:  “maybe you could use that podfaded show as a power source to drive traffic to another podcast….”

So I immediately thought about some of my podfaded shows. And, yes, I have re-posted some episodes from my previously podfaded shows in my current podcast shows. And although they may have needed a bit of editing to “touch up” the content and make it more relevant for the present, they did provide a great platform for generating great content.

One such example concerns another podcast show that I have called Yes, this is a show that I tried to start in 2014 and 2015, right after my initial interview with the “Podfather” himself,  Adam Curry of the No Agenda Show, in which we discussed how I was launching this new show to deal with the prognostications for the year 2030. Unfortunately, the show was delayed and was not published until later — until 2018. At that time, I continued the show, and later I added a co-host (Matt Cox, podcaster of Brunch with the Brits) to include in the ideas and discussion of the content for 2030 ideas. And so far, the show has been great to meet our own criteria for what we consider “success.”

And so I used that interview as the initial episode for the 2030 Podcast show, even though it was several years old:


Thus, I do consider myself to be a case-in-point of how podfaded episodes can be used to give new life and breathe a new set of passion to strengthen your podcast shows.

But I have also other examples of including podfaded episodes from podfaded shows to build and revitalize other podcast shows. For example, I had a podfaded show several years ago called The Struggling Entrepreneur. Well, I used some episodes from this podfaded show when I created another show called The Struggling Biz. And this has helped tremendously in gaining popularity and growing my audience to this day.

So we hope that you, too, as a podcaster, can find ways to use podfaded content to help boost your enthusiasm, passion and success in your podcasting. We wish you the best of luck, for whatever purpose you have, and we hope that your results exceed your expectations.

Thank you for your attention.

Copyright (c) 2021, Matrix Solutions Corporation and Evo Terra and . All rights reserved.


493- Approaching the twilight years of podcasting — perhaps

In this episode of The Podcast Reporter, we ask ourselves the perpetual question of:  “When do we approach the ‘twilight years’ of podcasting?” or “Have we reached our twilight years of podcasting?”

This theme was approached once before in 2018, but it is certainly an important issue for those of us who have been podcasting for the last 15 years, as I have. In fact, I started my first podcast when I was in my mid-50s, and I am still continuing to produce podcast episodes for my two main podcast shows, and — as well as adding a newer podcast series called The Struggling Biz.

As you will hear in this audio episode, although there is a lot of personal perspectives and my own history in this episode, it is important for us to reflect that we owe the benefits of podcasting to those who did pioneer the path for us today from the beginning of the podosphere in 2004. Their names are mentioned in this audio episode.

But, as for the senior podcasters involved, the question that has to be answered is:  “Are you in your own twilight years for any type of reason?” and “Are you approaching your own twilight years for podcasting?” I hope this provides some food for thought.

Thank you for your attention.

Copyright (c) 2021, Matrix Solutions Corporation. All rights reserved.


BONUS- Where conventional wisdom may NOT apply for success

In this episode of The Podcast Reporter, we wanted to start off the new year with a topic that can give you a strong reinforcement of your individual will and determination — that is, if you really believe in yourself and have the spirit in your gut. Thus, we deliver a REPURPOSED episode from another podcast show that is very relevant in the world of podcasting. The theme for this episode is a true case study of my own story that describes the environment when conventional wisdom and customs and consultation and recommendations may NOT apply.

This is a look back at how the term PODCASTER can be used in a situation to describe yourself and your value to customers instead of terms that are so overused and general that they may get lost in over a million podcast shows.

What determines your value and what describes you best may actually be your skills and your tech — especially if you deliver to your prospects something called a value proposition or a PROOF OF CONCEPT. Now, this will prove that you have the ability to meet their needs and requirements with great quality. So are you a “solution provider” like so many other thousands of podcasters? Or are you a podcaster whose skills and PROOF OF CONCEPTS can stand up to the best of them?

And in my situation for this case study, it proved to be the competitive differential advantage that landed me contracts and referrals — instead of using the same, trite, overused descriptions of being a “solution provider” for every problem in the book.

As you will hear in this audio episode, I had to take sharp criticism (and sometimes this can turn into verbal abuse and ridicule) from just about everyone in the podosphere at the time. And that may be the price you have to pay in order to succeed with your own instincts on what should work for you.

However, we wanted to let you know that sometimes the conventional wisdom of the day may NOT be the best road to success. That is why podcasting is still a great environment in which to pursue success, because there are always some other ways to pursue it.

Note: This episode appeared before as episode #60 in a podcast show called The Struggling Biz.

Thank you for your attention.

Copyright (c) 2021, Matrix Solution Corporation and Lon Naylor of . All rights reserved.


BONUS – An indirect video can help promote your business and podcast

In this BONUS episode, we discuss a case-in-point that shows how a video that is considered “indirect” can help your business — especially if your entrepreneurship is podcasting or relates to podcasting.

As opposed to a “direct” video that is uploaded to in perhaps your branded channel or personal channel, an “indirect” video is one whose objective and purpose was originally for another party or program that is not yours — but where the popularity and the exposure helped you INDIRECTLY to grow your podcast and grow your business goodwill and promotion.

As my story develops as this example the video that was created was called “Introduce a Bridge Too Far” — and it stuck as my own ID label for YouTube in every type of correspondence in YouTube that occurs to this day (especially in video chat rooms).

In this situation, I had prepared a video that was less than 90 seconds in length and had submitted it in a contest to win the prize of getting to introduce a movie at the Turner Classic Movies Film Festival Conference in the early part of 2014. And the title of the video was promoted by TCM on the site as “Introduce a Bridge Too Far.”



Now, my introduction to the 1977 Joseph E Levine classic film directed by Richard Attenborough and called “A Bridge Too Far” (which was based on the book by Cornelius Ryan) was posted as one of many who submitted videos in the contest to introduce a classic film. Needless to say, I did not win the contest, and thus I did not get to stand in front of the TCM audience at this conference and present the intro for the film before its showing.

However, the result of the video’s broadcast was the same as a video whose purpose was to go viral. On the first day, there were over 24,000 views, and this grew since October of 2013 until February of 2014. And thus, my exposure from this type of medium was a positive impact to both my podcast show of The Podcast Reporter and The Struggling Entrepreneur and my business of Matrix Solutions Corporation in the areas of content creation, video creation for training and podcast consulting. And much correspondence resulted as feedback from not only the TCM audience, but also thousands of YouTube subscribers who were into classic movies, war movies, TCM, etc. — as well as podcasters and listeners in the podosphere.

So, what may be an opportunity for you to create some content (whether video or audio or blog or any medium) could actually result as serendipity for you to get a very positive result from a random act of participation in an “indirect” medium for other purposes that do result in promotion for your business or your show.

Thus, we hope that you as entrepreneurs or podcasters can also experience serendipity in creating content for your business or podcast with an “indirect” objective that can result as a very positive growth for both your bottom line or your podcast show.

Perhaps maybe you can get the same result as I did — but I hope that you will have a better ID or name that will promote you or your business or show directly (as many people ask me why my name or ID was called “Introduce A Bridge Too Far”.

Thank you for your attention.

Copyright (c) 2020, Matrix Solutions Corporation and Cornelius Ryan and Turner Classic Movies and TCM and Joseph E Levine and Richard Attenborough and A Bridge Too Far. All rights reserved.


435- Podcasting virtual conferences and their efficacy

In this episode of The Podcast Reporter, we focus on the value of meetings and conferences for entrepreneurs as a result of this virus crisis of 2020 — especially since face-to-face or inbound meetings have always resulted in high value and returns for attendees or participants.

This episode is from the original point of view of this entrepreneur and podcaster — and we zero in on the podcast events and conferences of the past 15 years, with its ROI and value delivered as a result of participation (either as an attendee or a panelist in a session or as a presenter, etc.).

My background with events spans over 40 years — 30 of them in corporate America as an employee of a large multinational, and over 19 years as an entrepreneur. I had attended many events as both a demonstrator and attendee, as well as a presenter in the USA and other countries worldwide. So I have had plenty of experience in what is called “Events Marketing” and have seen the development of new practices and techniques and skills for events — both inbound and outbound (or virtual).

However, with this new plandemic of the virus crisis of 2020, most of the events have been canceled or shut down for the remainder of the year 2020. And even though some of the larger ones tried to reschedule for the latter part of the year, it was still evident that the ROI for the hosting organization of the event would not be realized, and so a cancellation and/or postponement was the only alternative.

Recently, I had participated both as a speaker and an attendee in the podcast conferences — from the New Media Expo (that dealt with all new media, such as blogs, video, screencasting and podcasting, etc.) to the Podcast Movement conferences, etc. And before then, I participated as demonstrator, speaker and attendee at the smaller inbound conferences such as the Podcasting events (e.g., the original Podcast and Portable Media Expo) and smaller Podcamps, etc.

So the question is: now that events have had to switch to a virtual “venue” over the internet, what value has been lost and what value has been gained?

Value Gained — especially ROI

The best part of the virtual conference is really a boon for the bean-counters — or for your budget, if you are a solo-preneur. That is, the SAVINGS in hard dollars that would have been spent in travel, lodging, food, laundry, transportation to and from the event, and other costs associated with inbound conferences that required an entrepreneur to go to an outside venue either to the other side of town or clear across the country (or even another country). The ROI possibility is greatly improved.

In addition, for HEALTH and HYGIENE reasons, the inbound events also save the entrepreneur from virus and health problems. This could be from the air circulated on an aircraft to and from the venue, to the hand-shaking, to the crowds at the event, and to the close proximity of demonstrators in the exhibit area when one is getting a demo of a product or getting information, etc. So there is no problem of contracting any colds or flu or other viruses (especially in late fall and winter times, such as those events in Las Vegas).

But besides the money saved and NOT spent, and besides the avoidance of hygienic and health threats, what are the OTHER values from avoiding the inbound conference?

“Paradise Lost” — especially in relationships and community

You can hear the list of valuable ROI engagements as discussed in recent podcast episodes from Evo Terra of Podcast Pontifications. In this podcast, he discusses the fact that the same type of relationship-building and getting to know someone in person cannot really be duplicated in a Zoom meeting or virtual conference over several days, where the speaker or demonstrator is speaking to a camera and not to a human being.

I agree wholeheartedly with Evo on that account. The last inbound conference I did attend was the Podcast Movement 2020 Evolutions event in Los Angeles (just before the lockdown occurred). I was able to re-energize with some of my fellow podcasters, as well as get to know some new contacts in person. The value and the nature of the relationship was unique only to person-to-person engagements and cannot be duplicated over the network with poor quality (as in zoom) or via a one-on-many presentation with poor audio and video. The Q-and-A portion of a virtual event cannot compare to asking a question live in front of the speaker or guest, and then later on catching that individual in the hallway or in the session room to get a one-on-one discussion, as well as handing a business card and asking for an interview, etc.

What seemed to be a great landscape and opportunity to derive value for future engagements, products, services, offerings and especially JOINT VENTURES was something which, unfortunately, I seemed to have taken for granted. And I think a lot of us can “resemble that remark” (as said by the cartoon cat, Garfield).

That great part of the in-person meetings and conferences was LOST — in fact, it seemed to me to be a “paradise lost” (as permitted by Milton) to the entrepreneur.

In addition, as a demonstrator, I was able to influence and promote my products, services, offerings, offers and web site, podcasts and other assets to the attendees and reporters of an event in a most influential way (that got good, measurable results) when I was in the exhibit hall of such a conference. And in the virtual world, this is entirely a situation lost.

The future and Regaining the value

So how can we regain the value of events in this re-defined normal of the world because of this plandemic and virus crisis, both now and after it is over?

For myself, as an entrepreneur and podcaster, I will continue to be VERY skeptical of the events as they go through their growing-up period of availability over the internet. I have already sat through different events, such as the SHIFT event from the team. And for me, this registered as a very low 2 on a scale of 1 to 10, where 10 is excellent.

That does not mean to say that I will not risk to invest in other sessions or events. I have registered for the upcoming and non-refundable Podcast Movement Virtual conference for 2020, just to see how it is and compare it to other events. While I am hoping to get greater value out of that (comparing it to the Podcast Movement 2020 Evolutions inbound conference), I am not holding my breath — for I forsee some growing pains still going through their evolution, with the attendees as the losers on this end.

Thus, as long as you, as an entrepreneur, can keep a skeptical eye and know what type of VALUE should be delivered to you by these events, you can be a good judge and critical thinker of their worth to you. And you should be able to see how and what type of improvements are occurring in the world of virtual events.

With your eye on lower costs and your desire to obtain VALUE for your time and attendance (and cost from the entry fee or virtual ticket), you should be able to put together what we have always advised — a COST-BENEFIT-ANALYSIS chart with your expected outcomes and results. And with this, you can make a determination to either wait until the events go back to inbound or to receive the VALUE in some other form of delivery, be it by way of virtual conferences, webinars, calls with others on the network, podcasts, screencasts or other media and technologies.

We hope that you can plan for — and receive — the value you deserve after determining whether or not to participate in some way to a virtual event in the near future. As for myself, I will be skeptical, but I will also reach out to take a low-cost risk to see this new paradigm of events for entrepreneurs.

Thank you for your attention.

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