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How John Lee Dumas Made $180,515.71 Last Month

May 19, 2014

EofireThere’s something to be said for a guy who can make six-figures per month without having to leave his house. And it’s even more impressive that, starting from zero, he’s gotten to this level in less than two years…

These things happen from time to time. But how? And how can something similar happen to you?

When we see somebody have great success, we want to know the “magic bullet” that made it possible — the previous connections, the famous last name, that one-in-a-million image that went viral on Pinterest and immediately caused your product to become a sensation…

So here’s the “magic bullet” of John Lee Dumas…

9 Business-Building Lessons from John Lee Dumas

1. Know Your Audience – When you try to please everybody, you please nobody. Entrepreneur On Fire, John’s podcast, was especially created for a very specific person — the guy working a day job, commuting to his office every day, who wants information about how to escape that situation.

The video which explains John’s avatar for his podcast, as well as the content he provided to help that person, is brilliant…

Clarity will go a long way in getting you (and your business) where you want to go.

2. Work Ethic – Anybody who’s ever done anything involving interviewing people knows the process can be a bitch. First of all, you have to get hold of people, then you have to get them scheduled, and then you have to navigate all sorts of things like missed appointments, technical problems, and meetings that for one reason or another don’t go as planned.

Then, if you’re doing something like a podcast, you have to edit the conversation to remove all the problem parts… Ummms, dogs barking, phones going off in the middle…

Then you have to write copy, and episode notes, and get everything uploaded in the proper place.

And then you have to actually promote what you’ve done, because a podcast that doesn’t get listened to might as well not exist.

Needless to say, it’s a lot of work, especially when you’re releasing daily.

Which is why most podcasts fail…

Like most creative endeavors, if you’ve explored podcasting, you’ve likely heard things like, “There’s a lot of competition.”

And there is a lot of competition, but most of it sucks. And even the competition that doesn’t suck will likely quit if given a little time to do so.

I’ve seen more people have success from outworking others than have success from talent. If you can stick things out, you’ll be fine.

3. Follow A System – When I first heard Entrepreneur on Fire, I wondered how it was possible for John to release an episode each day. I assumed, like a lot of broadcast radio shows, the actual interviews were done by a journalist, and produced episodes with John’s voice were pieced together later.

That isn’t what’s happening with Entrepreneur On Fire, but John Lee Dumas does have a system — record an entire week’s worth of episodes in a day.

How is this possible? You call in, knowing the questions he’s going to ask ahead of time, he asks those questions, and you give your already-prepared answers.

This makes things easy. No surprises.

The lesson here is when you find something that works, do more of it. And to do more of it with the least amount of resistance, have a system in place.

5. Play The Numbers Game – The music and book industries have a business model of releasing a lot of things, seeing what takes off, and pumping money into those things until they stop working.

Traditionally, one out of every eight albums (or books) makes money. That sounds like pretty bad odds, until you look at the numbers… The few books and albums that do make money, make so much money that they pay for the others that don’t do well.

Podcasting, like blogging, is often a similar model — a few episodes (or posts) get the majority of traffic.

Not every episode (or every blog post) is going to be a hit. Sure, you want to do what you can to have a good foundation (good content, good guests), but even with that, your revenue will likely increase when you follow a plan of “more content = more chance of success.”

6. Consistent Action – Having worked “content creation” businesses (radio, books, music, film) my entire career, I can tell you it’s harder than it looks to consistently create things that people want to consume. Even consistent and professional creators, like national radio and television shows, often play reruns.

Not John Lee Dumas. He doesn’t miss a day.

Of course, consistency is something to apply to more than just podcasting — it’s something to apply to all positive aspects of business.

How often are you doing what you need to do to be successful? Remember, consistency can work for you or against you.

7. Market Possibility – When I was at New Media Expo in January (see my review here), about half the people I met said they were there because they’d been inspired by Entrepreneur On Fire. That’s a huge amount and it shows how powerful “possibility” is as a marketing tool.

People want to know what they want is possible. And there’s nothing better to show possibility than a guy who started his business less than two years ago and is making $150,000+ each month. Unless you’re a guy who started his business less than two years ago, makes $150,000+ each month, and you release a daily podcast of people who also make great money doing what they love to do.

8. Market Personality – At its core, Entrepreneur On Fire isn’t that different than the hundreds of similar podcasts featuring entrepreneurs being interviewed. Anybody could take the questions John Lee Dumas asks each episode and use them on another podcast.

And plenty of people have done just that… And they’ve named their podcasts “________ On Fire,” just for good measure.

How come John Lee Dumas is still way ahead of the competition?


With so much talk about “transparency” and what “authentic” means, personality often gets forgotten. Or maybe it’s just that the majority of podcasters and bloggers have none to begin with…

Be honest — most don’t. Just because you’re involved with something doesn’t make what you do interesting.

Regardless, you need personality to succeed and, if you have it, you need to use it. People may steal your name and they may steal your format, but they’ll never be able to steal your personality.

9. Leverage –  John Lee Dumas uses leverage in three ways. First of all, volume, which I’ve already discussed above and helps tremendously in iTunes and Google search results. But beyond that, each episode of Entrepreneur On Fire features a guest who comes with his own amount of recognition, following, and platform.

Then there’s the listenership, which John refers to as “Fire Nation.”

A good audience will do your marketing for you, whether by wearing your jeans, bringing along a game for your party, or spreading your message. It’s always more powerful to have somebody else talk about you than to talk about yourself.

Final Thoughts

Success online (or offline) is real and it’s possible. It doesn’t take several years to do it either.

You must do the work though.

Good luck!

ABOUT THIS SERIES: Every Monday, I analyze the good, bad, and ugly about the marketing behind a common business or famous personality. See other posts in this series here and, if you have a request for something (or someone) you’d like me to analyze for this series, contact me via Twitter.

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