Mothers feel guilty when they do what they love outside of being a mother and a wife. Certified life coach, best-selling author, and personal development speaker Erica Blocker reminds moms everywhere that it’s okay to pursue the things that you want through her Moms with Dreams podcast. Her personal story is key why her audience resonates with her. Erica also reveals why some moms hold back from reaching their potential. Catch her tips on starting your own podcast, increasing engagement, and monetizing your show on today’s show.
Listen to the podcast here:
Center Of Influence: Moms With Dreams Podcast with Erica Blocker
I am excited to bring another She Podcasts Live speaker with you, Erica Blocker. She has the podcast Moms With Dreams. She’s also a certified life coach, bestselling author and personal development speaker. Her Moms With Dreams and Moms With Dreams University are available at MomsWithDreams.com. She has been juggling her roles as a divorced mom of four. She’s an entrepreneur, has a full time career and this passionate about helping other moms follow their dreams without feeling guilty. She specializes in helping single women navigate through the peaks and valleys of motherhood, of self-care. That is such an important topic. Self-discovery, overcoming fear and perfectionist, yet another very important topic, and doing what nourishes your soul and ignites your spirits. She’s based out of New Jersey with her kids and she keeps busy living her dream journey.
Erica, thanks so much for joining me. I am excited to talk to a mom with dreams and you talk to moms with dreams every day.
Yes, I do, Tracy. I’m super excited to be here with you as well. Thanks for having me.
You had your anniversary on your podcast, if I’m not wrong about that. What an accomplishment. Congratulations.
Thank you so much. It’s been a journey for sure. Sometimes it feels like, “I can’t believe it’s been a few years,” and sometimes I’m like, “It’s only been a few years.”
It’s only been that long. I talked to some people who been podcasting ten years or something, when it was like hard to podcast. It was hardly even called podcasting. I think to myself, “I’m a newbie. I’ve only been doing it five.”
Sometimes it seems like I’ve been doing it longer than a few years.
Another podcast? I know. Isn’t that always the way? You are going to be speaking at the She Podcasts LIVE event and I am excited because you are going to conduct a panel on the unexpected ROI, the return on investment from podcasting. I wanted to have a little bit into that because what has been your most unexpected return on investment from doing your show?
I’ve had so many, but if I had to say one, I think the biggest thing is meeting so many amazing women like yourself, Tracy. Had I not had my podcast, we wouldn’t even be talking right now. I have come across such amazing people in the industry and also as a guest as a result of being a podcaster. I’ve made amazing connections and have made great friends that I’ve kept over the years as well.
I think the relationship building has been unique in the podcast community. Everyone is so welcoming and so wonderful. All my guests are always so appreciative of being featured. That makes it even easier to build a great rapport with them. That is true. That’s a great ROI. What are some of the things though? You started a few years ago. It was a lot harder to start a podcast a few years ago. It’s easier now. There’s a lot more support, there are a lot more courses and services and all kinds of things to help you out. Back then, it was hard. I know, because that’s when I started one of mine as well. What were some of the things that went horribly wrong for you? The things that you were like, “That’s awful and now you probably still cringe at that episode.Being in the podcast community allows you to meet people and be known by people. Click To Tweet
This is the worst. When I first started my podcast, I did have a podcast coach who helped me launch my show, which was great. That was awesome. I had a few episodes in the bank, so I was able to release my first three episodes and it was great. However, I was doing the recording and editing myself. I am not a tech person at all by any stretch. I won’t even claim to be one. At the time, I was even more intimidated by tech than I am now. I’m not scared of it anymore, but I had no experience. Here I am like, “I’m launching this podcast.” I took something like a course on Audacity editing or read some whatevers and did some YouTube videos. I was like, “I’ve got this, I know what I’m doing.”
I record my first few interviews and they’re great content. The problem is that I didn’t know that I had the audio all messed up. My guest was in my left ear and I was in my right ear and that’s how it played back once I produced it. I was like, “Why does it sound like this? I don’t know how to mix.” I didn’t know what the terminology was at the time, but I didn’t know how to mix the tracks. I don’t know if it’s my first five or however many episodes it is. It has the guest in one ear and I’m in the other ear and I got to review on some. I forgot what platform it was, but the guy was super mean. He was like, “Don’t ever listen to this show. The audio was horrible, this and that.” That’s one of my worst. It’s funny things that happened to me when I first got started.
I have been there. I can remember a couple of times the audio is not even on, it’s not recording. What have been some interesting and exciting things that have happened to you because of the podcast?
I’ve landed so many speaking engagements and She Podcasts is one of them. As a result of podcasting, I’ve traveled because of it. When I went to Podcast Movement the year that it was in Anaheim. I was in a breakout session. I forgot the topic or whatever, but I’ve walked to this woman, I was like, “Nice to meet you.” I started saying who I was and she was like, “I know exactly who you are.” I’m like, “?” She’s like, “You’re the Moms With Dreams podcaster.” I was like, “Yes.” I was just blown away because here I am, I’m from New Jersey and I’m over in California meeting people I never knew before, but they already knew me because of my podcast. I was floored by that and I’m like, “Somewhat I’m a celebrity–like.”
You got fans all over the country.
I’ve gotten some coaching clients. I expanded my networking also have grown personally from it, just being more assertive and less afraid to talk to people who I don’t know and just have grown so much personally from being a podcaster.
You were talking a little bit about fear before we started our interview here. Fear is a big problem for I’m going to say a lot of women. Is it a bigger problem for moms? Do we have more fear as moms?
I think so. I think we create more fears because we’re always worried about our kids and what if this happens. We sometimes tend to overthink things and make things worse than what they are when it’s just a cut or a little scrape and we’re like, “She might need stitches.” I think with the podcast, my fear was is anyone going to listen to my show because it’s a show for moms. For me, that’s cool. I at the time wasn’t sure. I didn’t see a lot of mom stuff happening. I could’ve just been in my own little bubble, but I was just like, “Am I going to get guests and who’s going to listen to my show?” Those are my two biggest fears. It wasn’t enough to stop me though, I must admit.
What put the podcast bug in your ear? What made you think that podcasting might be worth trying?
Before I had my podcast, I hosted an online radio show and that was live. It was every week and I loved it. It was great exposure and I loved meeting people, being on the radio, having a platform to share my message and put other women on the platform to help them share their messages as well. The one thing I didn’t love was the fact that it was live and if you say something wrong, that’s it. You’re done. If you show up late, you’re missing out or if your guests are late, you have no flexibility and no room to wiggle over there. After I did my one year contract, I was like, “I want to do a podcast because I want more flexibility and more freedom and I want to be able to control things, rather than having a station telling me what I have to do, what time I start and that kind of thing.”
There is so much power to that control. You’re now about 150-plus shows in. Do you have some advice for someone who wants to start out?
First, I would say definitely plan out your time because I didn’t know how much time it was going to take each week being my own editor. First of all, finding the guests, scheduling them, recording the interviews, then editing them and then publishing them. It was a lot of work and a lot of time and I underestimated the amount of time it would take. I would say realistically look at how much time you have each week to invest and if you can afford to outsource. Now, I have an editor for this and all that stuff but in the beginning, I couldn’t afford it, so I did what I had to do.
If you have any means to outsource any of those things that take away from your love of podcasting, I would say do that because there was a point that sometimes it felt like it’s been longer than a few years because there was a point in my podcasting journey where I felt like I wanted to quit. I was overwhelmed. I couldn’t find the right program to use for recording and I had a lot of issues. I was like, “I’m done with this.” Had I had someone on my team as I do now where I can say, “Can you fix this audio or can you do this,” or whatever they do to make it sound great? Those are my two biggest things. Look at your time, make sure you have the time to invest in the podcasting and also consider outsourcing some of it. Don’t even put yourself through this stress and aggravation.
I think that’s probably why we see such a significant amount of people podfading. Podfading is when you start a podcast and then you quit somewhere and the typical is seven episodes, eleven episodes, 25 episodes or right around there. People will go on for a few hundred or a hundred or more after that at least. I think the number one reason is it was more work than they anticipated or they didn’t think that all the way through. They thought, “I just got to plug this microphone in and start talking and that would be it.” It’s a whole lot harder, a whole lot more prep than that. You’ve noticed that. Do you do a lot of prep for your guest interviews and things like that on your own?
I wouldn’t say a lot. I did a lot in the beginning because I was so new and so afraid of not sounding good and making sure that I was prepared. Now I feel more seasoned and I literally look up my guest. A lot of them come to me so I already have their background information and I can go to their website. I have their PR person pitching them so I can look at all that their one sheet and all that stuff. I do a little bit of groundwork prior to, but I don’t take hours.
Thank goodness it doesn’t take that anymore. If it took that long all the time, it would be a lot of work. I think your show, it’s not like it needs a lot of prep because you want to get them to talk about something probably that they don’t typically talk about if they’re businesswomen. They don’t necessarily talk about the mom’s side of things. You get to flip that. That’s what I want to talk about next. You have four kids. How old are they?
They are 18, 19, 20 and 26.
You look so young. Erica, you would have worked hard to raise them. Are they proud of you as a podcaster?
They think it’s cool. They used to think it was annoying though because when we lived in our old house, I didn’t have a room dedicated. It was like our den and there’s no door and it was attached to the kitchen. I used to have everything from the kitchen. It was off-limits. I was like, “You guys, do not come in here,” because of my microphone at the time, I was using the Yeti microphone. It’s a condenser mic, so it picked up every sound in the house. I’m like, “You guys, don’t go into the kitchen. Don’t go to the refrigerator.” It used to be annoying to them and they’d be like, “Mom’s podcasting again.” Now, they’re like, “It’s cool that you have a Moms With Dreams show.” At the same time, Tracy, they’re teenagers, so a part of them doesn’t care.If you can afford it, outsource the tasks and processes that take away your love of podcasting. Click To Tweet
They’re like, “Mom, don’t talk about me again.” I have three. Mine are all girls and they’re 24, ten and five. There is a big gap in there, with the same husband. My five-year-old will come and say, “Stop talking about me. You can’t talk about me.” She’s very conscious of that and I’m like, “I might’ve told a story about you on stage the other day, sorry.”
I use my kids a lot. They’re always like, “Mom.” They call me Extra Erica. They’re like, “You’re so extra, mom. You’re always using that for your stories. Sometimes we don’t even say half the stuff you say what we say.”
They were like, “You’re embellishing, mom.” I know what you mean. I would get that too. That’s a great nickname. How about some more lessons for some podcasters? This is my five tips section. These are the best ways to do these things. What are the best ways to book great guests? You mentioned before working with publicists. Have you found that to be a great way to book great guests?
I’ve gotten some great guests from publicists, but the other way that I’ve found great guests also is by when I’m out and about, if I’m at an event or I’m somewhere and I meet someone who I think is doing great things, I just ask them to be a guest on my show. Either I hear them speak at a networking event or whatever it is. I also find by getting out and meeting people physically in person has helped me also get great guests from our podcast.
What about increasing listeners? What are some of the best ways you’ve found to increase listeners?
To be consistent. If your show is a weekly show, put your content out every week and to not fall off. Because as soon as you fall off, you can be forgotten in a sea of podcasts and all the other things that people have going on. I’d say be consistent for sure and show up every single time that you’re supposed to.
You mentioned before, produce it in a professional way that you use some outside resources now. What do you think has improved the show the most in its production value?
Absolutely having a producer, a sound team who do all the sound work. My initial thing was having the volume and the sound was off. I don’t have that issue anymore. It sounds professional. I’m super happy about that because the audio is what will either attract or detract. Having great audio is so important and that’s changed the image of my show, I’ll say.
You made it much more professional. Your sound is good. I was listening to some of your episodes earlier. You do have great sounds. What about encouraging engagement? Does your community talk back to you?
They sometimes do. It’s not always. I always encourage them to, “Either send me an email or leave a comment below the show notes.” Every now and then I’ll get comments. When I do, they’re always so good and they give me just the right amount of motivation that I need to keep going. Because sometimes I feel like, “Is anyone listening?” I can see the downloads. I know people are listening but it’s different when you hear from a person who is touched or was helped by something you shared in an episode. I do get feedback from my audience. Sometimes I get random emails and I think it’s super cool.
You also get somewhat accosted at events. Have you found a way to monetize your show? Have you found a good way to do that?
Not consistently, to be honest with you. In the beginning I was like, “I want to monetize my podcast. I want to make it worth my while.” I realized that it’s an extension of my brand. Instead of stressing out about downloads and getting sponsors, which is what I was doing initially, I decided to be organic with it. Through my podcast, I’ve gotten new coaching clients because they’re listening every week or how often my show comes out. They’re listening, they’re getting to know me, they’re liking what they hear and they want to work with me. Indirectly, I have monetized my podcast.
It’s increased your authority for being a coach and look at how people reach out and connect with you. I love that about it. My favorite way is when it resonates into your core business and builds that community that you’re looking for. They warm themselves up to you. I think that’s my favorite monetization way, because then it’s effortless. You get to do what you love and you get rewarded for that. Where can we find you on social media?
You can find me on Facebook at Erica Blocker. My personal profile is there and I have my business page, Erica Blocker. I’m also on Instagram @EricaBlocker4. I have two websites. I have EricaBlocker.com and I also have MomsWithDreamsUniversity.com which is an online platform that I created for moms to learn and take courses online.
I want to talk a little bit about that. Your podcast is pretty unique from others in its category. I’m going to even say bingeable. Have you gotten some peoples telling you that they binge on your show? They find it and then they want to consume it because you’ve got some great timeless content there. What’s special about you as a host or the guests that you bring on that is bringing an edge to the marketplace of Moms With Dreams?
Thank you so much for the compliment. I want to say that for me it’s just my authenticity. I don’t go on there with airs. When I bring guests on, I feel like they are genuine people who resonate with my audience and can speak to them, speak to their needs, speak to their desires, speak to their challenges, and just be relatable overall. The content that we discussed, the topics that I have are real topics. I’m not trying to be super high level and I’m not trying to be just all about entertainment either. I try to bring a nice balance of information, inspiration, education, and also just making women feel like they have a place where someone gets them or they can come to when they feel like no one around them understands. They can get that information or feel like they’re connected to someone who understands them.Take time to get clear on what you want, then pursue it. Click To Tweet
Do you feel that your audience, your Moms With Dreams, that there are some unifying themes that happen to them that they’re not pursuing them or things that are holding them back?
Absolutely. Some of the themes that I hear recurring through different conversations are the mom guilt theme that plagues us all at some point or another. It’s the feeling of how do you balance motherhood and the struggle of doing what you love outside of being a mother and a wife. How do you bring that all together so that you don’t feel like you’re taking precious time and energy away from your family? It’s also having confidence. I feel like sometimes we as mothers forget our value. Even when we’re working in corporate America, we forget that we have skills at work and how to transition those skills into a viable business or something where we can put ourselves out there and show that we have authority and not downplaying our abilities and skills. I would say those are the most, and the time thing, not having enough time. I think that goes back into like being busy being a mom and having so many things. I feel like those are the main things that we hear most often.
It’s so interesting that you say that. It made me remember that my husband and I had been married 27 years and we co-parent well. We also run our business together. We work together and play together and raise kids together. I was on a trip to China and I was over on my trip and someone asked me, “What happens to your children while you’re here?” It never occurred to me even to worry or think about it because I was like, “My husband’s watching them. Why would that be a thing?” There are also cultural differences between moms. I didn’t even think about it because it didn’t relate to me.
I have a lot of single moms too who listen to the show and they have the issue of childcare and things of that. Feeling like, “What am I doing with my kids when I’m trying to pursue this dream over here?”
It’s a hard row, I agree. Even at juggling it as a couple, it’s always hard. Definitely that is a huge undertaking and it’s always a concern. Whenever I signed myself up for speaking event, it’s like, “Is this going to be a problem?” I know and I can see that holding you back there so. I am so glad that you are bringing your service to the world through Moms With Dreams. Is there maybe a great guest that you’d love to have on your show that maybe one of our readers might be able to reach out and connect with you?
My dream guest is Lisa Nichols.
I love her. I love her story. She’s inspired me. She’s one of the reasons why I started coaching is because she was a single mom from LA and now she’s a multimillionaire seeking, coaching, writing books and just making a huge impact on the world and she’s also a mom. I’m so amazed by her and I love her spirit, her energy when she talks about all that stuff. She would be one of my dream guests.
I might be able to make that happen for you because we produced a few episodes where she’s been a guest on, so I might be able to reach out to one of my other podcasters and say, “Can you make an intro for us?” If you don’t ask, it doesn’t happen. Is there any other advice you’d like to leave our readers with about becoming a podcaster or sharing your dreams? What else would you like to tell them?
If you’re thinking about podcasting or even if you’re on the fence about should I follow this dream or pursue it, I would first say take time to get clear on what you want. If you know that this is what you want, then go for it. Don’t let anything stop you. I don’t care if you’re a mom, I don’t care if you’re a grandma, if you’re a father. Whatever you are, it doesn’t matter. If you’re young, sometimes people may downplay the fact that, “You’re too young. You don’t know what you’re doing.” Don’t let anyone or anything stop you. Most of all, don’t wait until you’re perfect. You know enough, you have enough and you’re good enough right now.
If this is something you want to pursue, then I wholeheartedly encourage you to go after it. You’ll learn what you need to learn as you go along. You read my story. I had no idea what I was doing with the sound and I didn’t know what I’m doing with the editing. Right now if you listen to my show, it’s totally different than it was and that’s all part of the journey. Don’t be afraid to make mistakes. Don’t be afraid to not sound great because you‘re not always going to sound the greatest. It doesn’t matter because there’s someone waiting for you to show up and someone needs your message. I encourage you to step up, get out there and share with the world who you have.
Erica, thank you so much. You can find Erica Blocker at her website and you can find her podcast Moms With Dreams as well. I’m sure we’ll be able to find her. Take a listen, hear what she has to say and join her show. Erica, thank you so much for joining me. I appreciate it.
Thank you, Tracy. It was a pleasure and I had so much fun talking with you.
This is Tracy Hazzard and I will be on next time with another Center of Influence podcaster just like Erica on Feed Your Brand.
- She Podcasts LIVE
- Erica – Main site
- Podcast Movement
- Erica Blocker – Facebook
- @EricaBlocker4 – Instagram
About Erica Blocker
Erica Blocker is a certified life coach, bestselling author and personal development speaker. She is the creator and host of the Moms with Dreams podcast and founder of Moms with Dreams University. Juggling roles as a divorced mom of four and an entrepreneur with a full-time career, Erica is passionate about helping moms follow their dreams without feeling guilty. She specializes in helping single women navigate through the peaks and valleys of motherhood while teaching the importance of self-care, self-discovery, overcoming fear and perfectionism, and doing what nourishes your soul and ignites your spirit.
Erica holds a masters degree in psychology and a bachelors degree in small business management and entrepreneurship. She lives in New Jersey with her children, who keep her busy and entertained on her dream life journey.
Love the show? Subscribe, rate, review, and share!
Join the Feed Your Brand community today: