The Boost Hospitality Podcast is back for another season! And we are now in Season 6. And this time, we are currently on the fifth episode of season six! Today, Elaine Watt will share some amazing and useful tips on how to grow your network the right way and make sure you listen to the podcast until the very end so you will learn a lot of pieces of stuff on how to do it properly.
Elaine Watt, our guest for episode 5
Elaine Watt of the HLS podcast is the best guest I could think of when it comes to someone credible to talk about how to grow the network. She has a Facebook group, and she got a fantastic website. Her community is incredible. She does monthly meetups, and she goes to a lot of events!
She is the host of Holiday Let Success podcast, and she got into hospitality coming up for five years ago now.
Her original background was always property since her family have ever done properties, sales, network marketing and customer service.
I thought that she has managed to pull all of those things together and find all of that within the hospitality industry.
When did you think about getting started with a podcast? What was the inspiration behind it?
And I knew that I needed to learn internet marketing, as well as just relying on the OT as I knew I wanted some form of control of my business.
So I was I delved into learning about internet marketing. And that was when I first found out about podcasting, I was like, this is amazing.
This is obviously what I’ve got to do. So it gave me thought, I can’t be the only person who is in this situation thinking I have no idea how to do this.
And I thought it would be great to share with other people that were in a similar situation to me to hopefully help them get the hang of it to take control of their business and grow and make it into something with longevity with a future.
It gave me a perfect excuse to speak to people that were doing this and take some fantastic advice for I’ve had the opportunity to talk to just some incredible people across the industry.
What was the first thing that you did, when you wanted to start to get guests on the show?
I decided that I would reach out in a way that took everything off me and went on to the person that I contacted, so I found people that I thought were super interesting in the industry.
And I found people that I thought I would be able to reach out to via email, then I started following them on social media, and learned a bit about them, and read up on them.
Then I found people that I could send an email straight through. I tried to attempt to talk to them from a way of how can I help you, rather than going in to say, what can I get from you? What can I get from this person? And just going in going this is my business?
This is what I’m doing trying to sell myself and trying to sell my business. I went in from a different position. Can I help you share what it is you’re doing with the holiday homeowners? Via a podcast?
But I would love you to be one of my first guests’ big plans for it, and I think what you’re doing would be fantastic for other holiday homeowners.
A Brief History of Elaine’s HLS podcast
Now you can get podcast readily, and you can start a podcast so easy. Literally, if you’ve got an anchor account, you can record some on your phone, put it on there, and it was a podcast five years ago, that wasn’t the case.
And by reaching out to you know, the people on your list, and by saying I’ve got an audience people were starting to figure out about podcast market and about how to spread their knowledge on this audio platform and beginning to realize in audio is such a consumable content, it’s something that you don’t have to sit down and watch.
You don’t have to attend a two-day event to do it. You can listen in your car, or you can do it wherever you are.
Doing the dishes or just walking the dog or however, it’s the way that people consume audio the way that people will be drinking this.
Who did you remember the first person you ever reached out to to be a guest on the show?
I will never forget it because I was so nervous when I did the recording. And I was dreading hearing my voice back. It was Phil Scofield.
But Phil Schofield of Schofield insurance provides holiday home insurance. So he was a great one to start with. Because again, I needed to know about that area quickly.
I like about that is that you’re speaking to an expert in the field. And you’re doing it on a platform where you can learn, but you’re then going to help others learn at the same time.
And this is what I like about a lady called Janet Murray. If you’ve ever listened to her earlier podcast, and I’ve listened to a lot of a podcast, I think she’s an award-winning podcast and she’s fantastic in what she does.
How can you network without being spammy?
Number one, don’t just go straight bombard with messages. Follow people on social media, find people that you find interesting and find out a little bit more about them.
And then when you’re confident at that point, put together a name or find a real email address and send them an email, don’t try and do it on a platform where they’ve got so much noise.
Twitter is a good example. Five years ago, everybody was using Twitter. And if you were to send a direct message on that platform, it would be lost in all the other hundreds of people we communicate in direct messages trying to get their time, take a bit of time craft out something and send them an email.
So when you reached out to Phil, was it kind of easy to explain what a podcast was?
I’ve never had a problem with people not knowing what a podcast was, out of so many guests that I’ve invited I’ve only ever had one person who turned that down. It was because his English was his second language.
He was a little nervous about doing the full podcast. Anybody I’ve spoken with jumped at the chance to be able to share what they’re doing.
What another way? I mean, they’re on social media and they’ve got their websites.
But where have they had the chance to explain step-by-step purely what it is that they do with some excellent questions just pulled out which I needed to ask?
I knew that other holiday homeowners would ask as well. Where if they got that opportunity. So it was just like a no brainer for most people. I hope that part of the way that I approached.
What benefits have you seen for your business from doing so?
I have seen a lot of benefits. There are two sides to my networking really, and one side is for a holiday let success podcast. And that’s the meetups every month.
Also, I think it’s building can what I wanted to do was build a community, a place where people can meet in person and see that all of the people that are doing this because it’s quite a lonely industry to be in if you’re an individual owner, you are faced with your computer day in day out, and of course, your guests.
You also don’t always get someone to talk about issues and niggle what’s working and not working. And how to overcome those bumps in the road that we all have when we’re getting set up.
Indeed, when we’re past learning and setting up, there’s always something happening, there’s still going to be a bump in the road, and to be able to share that and find out what someone else might have done in that instance.
That’s been brilliant for me as a business owner, and giving me the chance to talk to humans.
So that’s been good. I am not just sitting behind my computer.
How did you go about creating it? How did you go about spreading the word?
I would say keep it casual to get started with and meet somewhere that’s got parking, and that is easy to understand because I’ve learned from another event that I organised a Toastmasters meeting where I learned to public speak.
One of the biggest things that made our club such success was the fact that it was effortless for people to get there and so I learnt a lot from setting that up.
For holiday homeowners, I say why aren’t I doing this meeting. And one of the most significant successes I’ve had is with meetup.com.
There’s also an app, meetup shares, any event that is going on in your area, you can go to me to calm, and you can search by neighbourhood within however many miles about whatever your subject is, and everything.
All the meetups under that subject within that distance of your area will pop up on that. So I knew people were searching for this. So I was straight on to meetup.com. I’ve also talked about it a lot on social media that meetup.com hugely successful I also use Eventbrite.