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ActiveGrowth Podcast - Digital Marketing for Self Made Entrepreneurs

ActiveGrowth Podcast - Digital Marketing for Self Made Entrepreneurs

By Shane Melaugh
The ActiveGrowth Podcast is different: discover our in-depth content series that tackle important problems every entrepreneur faces. Instead of the typical "expert of the week" interviews, we listen to your feedback and create episodes full of practical advice. This podcast gives you the tools and mindset to create and grow your own product or service based business and become a highly effective entrepreneur.
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Why You Shouldn't Be A Startup - It's not what you think!

ActiveGrowth Podcast - Digital Marketing for Self Made Entrepreneurs

New Business Opportunities that Arise from Times of Change
Things are changing, mostly for the worse. But what can we do, as entrepreneurs, to keep the economy going and to step in with services, products and solutions where new needs arise? Times of change are always difficult, but they're also always times of great opportunity. In this episode, we discuss what such opportunities are and where entrepreneurs can step up and do their part. Blog post:
April 17, 2020
How to Recession-Proof Your Income
Links & resources: Why do some businesses fold immediately when there's economic trouble, while others sail through seemingly unharmed? What strategies can entrepreneurs employ in these times of uncertainty, to not only make it through but even gain an advantage? In this episode, Shane Melaugh and Oliver Cowlishaw explore these topics.
March 31, 2020
Now is the Time to Invest in Yourself
Counterintuitively, a crisis like the one we find ourselves in is the perfect time to invest in yourself and double down on your good habits. In this episode we take a deep dive into what entrepreneurs can do right now, to take care of their "basics", become more focused and more capable, and ultimately not only survive but thrive in difficult times. Links and resources:
March 27, 2020
Build a Business During the Recession - COVID Crisis, Part 2
Article and resources: Timestamps: 00:33 - My experience building a business during a recession. 02:40 - Prepare to get uncomfortable. And make it count. 06:19 - Use strategic pessimisim & raise your standards when evaluating new business ideas. 09:49 - The opportunities lie in counter-intuitive action. 12:59 - Now is the time to do "local good". 16:42 - My filter bubble has been doing great. Yours?
March 21, 2020
COVID Crisis Intervention for Entrepreneurs
Article with resources and links: Timestamps: 00:48 - Who this is made for. 04:15 - Calculate your "runway score". 08:41 - If you have a high runway score: play the long game. 13:06 - If you have a low runway score: ​what tradeoffs to make. 17:19 - Identify & take action on leverage points in your business. 21:04 - 80/20 your offers for a time of crisis. 22:33 - How to online-ify an offline business.
March 20, 2020
Ethical Marketing aka Will Pop Up Users Burn In Hell?
What is ethical in marketing? Are you scamming your customers if you use a pre-recorded webinar? Is it mean to use pop-ups all over your website? What's the deal with selling products that aren't even ready yet? What does it mean to be ethical? Find the answers in this episode!  Show notes:
April 21, 2019
Free Traffic: Let Google Find Your Ideal Customers
We're here with another episode on SEO: the dreaded topic we like to avoid like the plague. Our guest today, Matt Diggity, founder of the SEO conference in Chiang Mai and many SEO agencies, is giving you a crash-course today on how to do SEO without spending too much time learning, guessing, and failing. Listen to his step-by-step guide you can follow immediately to boost your website's traffic, attracting people that are actually ready to purchase rather than just surfing the web out of boredom.  Find the show notes at
April 9, 2019
Free Traffic: Your Course Marketing Sucks
You created an exceptional course, but it won't sell. You most likely got your marketing all wrong. And what's worse is that you market it in ways that are costing you way more money than it should.  Tom Libelt is here to tell us how to market an online course the right way and close more clients while keeping your money in your pocket.  Find the shownotes to this episode at
March 30, 2019
The Only Way You Can Get Rich Overnight
Are you still in bed at 6 a.m.? The most hardcore entrepreneurs are already at the gym by 5. Or that's what they say. Should you follow their advice? What's the truth behind waking up early and starting your day before the sun comes up? In this episode, we'll discuss why waking up early might be the most harmful advice entrepreneurs follow, and why sleep is way more important that you might think. Get the shownotes from
February 19, 2019
Free Traffic: The Refer A Friend Method
Did you know that most of our purchase decisions are made based on recommendations we get from happy customers? Think of the last book you read, the movie you watched or the hotel you stayed in. You can promote your business as much as you want, but nothing beats the power of a recommendation. The best part: you can (and should) take advantage of this. We invited Raúl Galera from ReferralCandy to tell us how to do it, what makes a referral program successful, what works best in your specific case and how to do it on a low budget.  Find the show notes at:
December 9, 2018
Free Traffic: The Hero Outreach Method
You know that it's important to get featured on many pages. But how can you convince people to feature you? How do you get the real superheroes in your market to feature you on their websites, channels and feed to get you the backlink and free traffic your business needs so bad? We interviewed Colin Shipp who shared with us how you can find people that are worth reaching out to, who to email, how to frame it and what to say in your emails exactly; what to do if you don't hear back and how else you can benefit from these relationships. Listen in, this simple but often missed method can increase your traffic significantly!   Show notes:
December 4, 2018
Free Traffic: The Bootstrapper's Guide to SEO
You might hear that only the big players make it to the first page in Google in 2018. You might hear that you need to do shady things if you want to rank anyway.  We interviewed Tim Soulo, CMO at Ahrefs, who gave us his best SEO advice on how to rank in search engines even if you're just starting out, your product is new, your website barely has visitors and you don't want to spend a fortune on ads or a team - without having to do anything sketchy.  New to SEO? We added some extra information for you that you can read in our show notes:
November 12, 2018
How to Get Free Traffic to Your Website – The Big List
If you're a bootstrapping entrepreneur, budget matters more than anything. Your business is up and now it's time to drive more traffic, but how can you do that without spending a fortune on advertising?  In this episode, we're starting a new series on how to drive traffic with time instead of money, and going through a list of traffic generation methods that are practically free or very cheap.    Find the shownotes here:
October 30, 2018
Why You Shouldn't Be An Entrepreneur
Recently, having a job is frowned upon - you need to be an entrepreneur to be worthy. Well, we disagree. Being your own boss is definitely not for everyone, and even if you have the skills to do it, it might be way worse than having a job you love, makes you feel valued and allows you to work on your passion most of the time. In this episode, we want to give you the "entrepreneur job description" to know what you sign up for, and what other great options you have if this is not your path.    Find the show notes at 
October 7, 2018
Why You Shouldn't Be A Startup - It's not what you think!
Who do you try to model when you're building your business? Are you looking for inspiration and advice for rapidly growing startups like Google and Uber? You couldn't be making a bigger mistake... In this episode, we'll discuss why modeling an expert can backfire and following the growth-at-all-cost can be a death sentence for your smaller-scale business. Listen in to find out what to do instead for more profit, success, and chance to survive!    Shownotes:
August 24, 2018
Are You Creating Value or Just Advertising Space?
These days, if you have enough followers, you can just live off of sponsorship deals. Or can you? What are the pros and cons of this model and what is a better solution? In this episode we're digging deep into the topic of advertising spaces, look at past trends and discuss the future of influencer marketing. We won't leave you without a better solution.  Find the shownotes at:
August 6, 2018
Is Your Journey Worth Having?
Is success worth pursuing in a world where so many successful people just can't handle the challenges it comes with? The solution is not to stop wanting to be successful. Listen in for our advice.
July 11, 2018
Still Not Making Videos?
Today we have three special guests who have been recording videos for their work for a long time - but have struggled terribly to get started. Listen to their experience with the fight-or-flight reaction their body made when hitting record, the resistance and the steps they took to get over it, and the lessons they'd give to their pasts selves to make the process even faster and easier if they could start over. If you still haven't pulled the trigger, this episode will give you the boost you need! Find the show notes here:
July 3, 2018
Why Entrepreneurs Need to Learn Many New Skills Rapidly (and How to Do It)
Do you ever feel like you have to be good at multiple things to excel as an entrepreneur - even things you never thought you'd have to do well? In this episode, you'll learn a specific method to get good at new skills the fastest possible way. Works with every skill! Find the show notes at
June 12, 2018
Why You Need to Record Yourself on Video
You learn many new things as an entrepreneur - but are you good at implementing them? Or you know you should do it, but something is holding you back? In this episode, we're helping you recognize and tackle resistance from publishing - especially when it comes to making videos!   Find the shownotes here:
May 23, 2018
“Be Imprecise”: Make Better Decisions Using this Unconventional Method
If Ray Dalio, one of the world's most successful hedge fund managers, told you about his most undervalued skill, would you pay attention? We're going against all you learned in school today and tell you why the exact answer is not the right answer for your business. Learn how imprecision can move your business forward faster!  Show notes:
May 11, 2018
Collide Your Ideas With Reality
We're about to destroy your enthusiasm. We know you have a dream, a higher purpose. But we don't think you'll get there unless you get a little more pessimistic. In this podcast episode, we'll teach you how to see where your business idea might go wrong - and we'll save you a lot of time and money with this.   Shownotes:
May 1, 2018
The Solopreneur Episode: What to Stop, Change and Start Doing to Make Progress
It's hard to copy big, successful business models when you don't have a team behind you to distribute the work to. The common solopreneur mistake is trying to do all the work ourselves - but it never works out! In this episode, we'll tell you what you need to stop working on even if you find it important, what tasks you should do differently and what are the most important things to work on. Don't worry, we'll also tell you the how, so you will know how to determine what you're wasting your time on and how exactly be more efficient, follow the 80/20 rule and focus on what will really make a difference to your bottom line. Find the shownotes here:
April 10, 2018
How To Get Your Message Across Faster, Better, Clearer
Can you communicate effectively with your audience, your coworkers, partners or even your family? How do you get your point across, avoid misunderstandings while keeping people's attention? Listen to this episode for the best tips on crystal clear communication, as a continuation of our episode 25 on Bento Box Thinking. Get the shownotes here:
April 4, 2018
How To Grab Your Audience's Undivided Attention in 2018
Undivided attention. Is it too much to ask for in 2018 for an online entrepreneur? It might be, if your clients' phone are buzzing every second with notifications from various apps they don't even need. How can you win this game and still get some attention from your audience? What is your unique weapon that distractive apps are lacking? Find the show notes here:
March 20, 2018
Bento Box Thinking: Learn How to Say What You Mean
How often do you feel like people misinterpret you or vice versa - even though you speak the same language? Most of us experience this a lot. In this podcast episode, you'll learn a new way of thinking and communicating both in speaking and writing that will help you be more clear and to the point in both speaking and writing and create content faster that then you can easily re-use and turn into a different type of medium. Learn this, and you'll not only step up your marketing game, but you can also improve your social skills and personal relationships. Find the show notes here:
March 12, 2018
Are We Living in the Patreon Era?
Ads on Facebook, Google, and other platforms don't convert as well as they used to. It's getting harder to get your people to pay attention to your ads. Is this the end of the online advertising era? In this episode, we're analyzing Patreon and other crowdfunding platforms and discuss why people hate ads but are more than happy to donate money to the people they follow - just because they feel like it. Tune in - this could be the solution to your decreased revenue!   You can find the shownotes for this episode at    
February 22, 2018
How to See Untapped Business Opportunities Everywhere You Look
Stuck coming up with a great business idea? Learn how to develop the skill of seeing opportunities everywhere, find ideas that match your skills and passion, get into the habit of generating new ideas every day and find the business idea that would actually work for you!  Show notes:
February 10, 2018
The Hidden Productivity Benefits of Connecting With Your Wild Side
Let me guess: you spend a huge portion of your day sitting in a chair, staring at a screen. "Sitting in a chair, staring at a screen" is increasingly what everyone's job description looks like. And especially entrepreneurs feel obliged to put in countless hours in front of the screen. You gotta be on the grind, gotta put in the hours to get your business off the ground, right? You might be surprised to discover the content of this episode. In it, we talk about the things you can do to "re-wild" your workspace and why connecting with your inner animal (in a very pragmatic, non woo-woo way) could be the productivity kick you've been missing. Show notes:
February 2, 2018
Emergency Intervention: How to Fix Your Crappy Copywriting
You need to fix your copywriting. If you can't write words that convince, trying to grow your business will be like moving through molasses. Poor copy will handicap you every step of the way.  Because there's such an important need for this, I created this "emergency issue" episode with my 80/20 approach to writing amazing copy. Meaning: this is how you can invest the least time and effort to get the greatest increase in the effectiveness of your copy. Check out the show notes here:
January 27, 2018
What Does Your Business Stand For? A Guide to Creating a Manifesto
People do business for all kinds of reasons and not all of those reasons are pragmatic. We don't always choose the most optimal product for our needs at the lowest available price. In fact, we rarely do.  Purchase decisions are driven by emotions, by social pressure and by all kinds of other soft, gooey, human factors. That's why your business should be about more than just the products and benefits you offer. Your business should have a story, a soul. It should stand for something.  And you should declare that thing you stand for, out loud, for the whole world to hear. You should have a manifesto. In this episode, you'll learn how to create one.  Get the show notes here:
January 19, 2018
7 Highly Effective People Reveal Their Favorite Productivity Hacks
We all want freedom. Freedom in location, in time... but once you have it, it's hard to stay productive and focused. In this episode, we brought our remote marketing team together, so that each of us can share our best tips with you on staying productive when you're out and about.
January 11, 2018
Irresistible Offers 4: 9 Examples of Irresistible Offers (and How They Could Have Gone Wrong)
In this final episode of our Irresistible Offers, we want to make it as practical as possible and analyze 9 amazing offers. You'll learn what makes these offers so great, what sets them apart from their competitors and how these offers could've gone wrong. Start listening now!
January 5, 2018
Irresistible Offers 3: How to Write Amazing Copy (Even if You Hate Copywriting)
In the previous episodes, you learned how you can find the best offers for your product. In the final episode of the "Irresistible Offer" series, we'll uncover how to find the magic words for your copy that will make people buy.
December 19, 2017
Irresistible Offers 2: How to Create a "Hell Yeah!" Offer
Once you have a great product idea, you need to figure out how to sell it. And it might be harder than creating the product itself... In this podcast episode, you'll learn how to create different offers for the same product or service and what you can do to determine the winner. Find the show notes at
November 21, 2017
Irresistible Offers 1: The Riches Really Are in the Niches
Are you making the mistake of trying to appeal to everybody with your offer? You're expecting to sell more, but what really happens is that your sales drop. In this episode, we'll cover why this happens and how you can boost your sales by offering to less people.
November 10, 2017
The 2 Key Skills for Gaining Traction With Your Business
As an entrepreneur, you often find yourself doing jobs that at least 5 different people should be doing. There are a lot of new skills to learn - if you fail to do that, your business might fail too. In this episode, we're sharing the two key factors of successful entrepreneurial skill building. Show notes:
October 4, 2017
The Paradox that is Slowing Down Your Progress (More Than You Think!)
The Internet is full of new information, exciting headlines, attractive posts. Then why do we at ActiveGrowth choose to discuss the same topic over and over again for multiple weeks? We truly believe that by slowing down, we help you progress faster. Find out why! Shownotes:
August 30, 2017
Steal Like an Artist? How Copying the Wrong Way Will Doom Your Business
Looking at other businesses for inspiration is a good thing. Blindly copying whatever they do... not so much. Avoid coming across as unethical, inauthentic and fake, and learn how to collect inspiration the right way. Find the shownotes of this episode under
August 21, 2017
Your Job is to Ship 5: How to Set Your Own Deadlines & Stick to Them
When do you start working on a project if you know that you have a whole month to ship it? Chances are, not today. And even if you are, you won't be as productive as the days before the due date. Why do we depend so much on deadlines, and what happens when nobody set a deadline for us? In this podcast episode, we're going to dig deep into this topic and give you some very actionable tips to not only ship in time, but also to avoid putting off work until the very last moment. Show notes:
August 14, 2017
Your Job is to Ship 4: Why "Just Do It" Just Doesn't Work (& the Real Secrets to Being Super Productive)
Why can't you just get yourself to be more productive and do the work you know you need to be doing? In this episode we explore the human brain and the secrets to habit formation, to find out. Apologies for the worse than usual sound quality in this one. Show notes:
August 7, 2017
Your Job is to Ship 3: Procrastination by Perfectionism is Killing Your Business
Entrepreneurs tend to procrastinate on shipping because of their fear of failure and worry that their service or product is not good enough yet to go live. This feeling is very common but often unjustified. In this podcast episode, we discuss entrepreneurial perfectionism, and how to get over this worry that stops you from shipping. Show notes:
July 28, 2017
Your Job is to Ship 2: Are You Goal Setting Your Way to Failure?
Everything you've been told about how to set goals and achieve them is wrong. Well, almost everything. And definitely everything that involves "visualization" of any kind. Despite the popular belief, visualizing how great it will feel to accomplish your goals makes you less productive and MUCH less likely to see things through. For this episode, we invited an expert to tell us about visualization, goal setting and entrepreneurial procrastination. And we dive deep into the complete goal setting toolbox and how you can hack your brain to become better at shipping. Show notes:
July 24, 2017
Your Job is to Ship 1: Are You Chasing Bright Shiny Objects?
Coming up with a great product idea and building it is not the hardest part in your business. The hardest thing you'll face is actually shipping it. In this first episode of our "Your Job Is To Ship" podcast series, we'll give you six actionable tips on how to focus on shipping your product instead of getting distracted by bright shiny objects all the time. Show notes:
July 17, 2017
Mixup: Do You Truly Own Your Business?
One of three pillars of ActiveGrowth is: own your platform. What does that mean? It means that your business is truly your own and you aren't dependent on (or enslaved by) 3rd parties. An easier way to say it: don't be a YouTuber. Or Instagrammer. Or whatever the next thing is that comes along. In this episode, you'll discover what it means to own your platform, what the difference is between USING and BEING DEPENDENT ON a 3rd party and why the most convenient path is not always the best for your business. Get show notes and links here:
July 5, 2017
Forget Traffic 4: Escape the Hamster Wheel
This episode was made in response to the first live ActiveGrowth Podcast webinar we held. From the questions and comments we got there, we figured out the two main things we could do to help you make the most of the "Forget Traffic!" philosophy. First, the reason why "audience first" feels better, even though it's much more likely to fail (and fail after you've invested a lot of time and effort). Once you understand this, you're much more likely to reject the allure of audience building before customer getting. Second, we walk through several examples of businesses where a "customer first" solution isn't obvious. But as you'll see: still possible to do (and still the fastest path to success). You can get the shownotes and PDF for this episode at
July 4, 2017
Mixup Episode: 5 Ways Ego is Bad for Business
On the ActiveGrowth Podcast, we do in-depth content series and we do mixup episodes. A mixup episode is any episode that isn't part of a series. This is our first mixup episode and in it, you'll discover the 5 (sometimes subversive) ways in which your ego can get in the way of your business' growth. We discuss how in many businesses, large corporate culture incentivizes behavior that really doesn't work for entrepreneurs. And the 5 ways in which anyone (no matter how humble) can trip themselves up with their ego. For each of these 5 ways, we've created systems that we use to avoid the mistakes in our business. And of course, we share those systems with you. For show notes & links, check out
June 30, 2017
Forget Traffic 3: How to Build a Digital Product Empire, 'Customer First' Style
In the previous episodes, you discovered how quickly you can get your first few customers, using the right strategy. Getting these first customers is an example of doing something that doesn't scale. Yes, you can use this strategy to create a full time income for yourself, but you can't scale it much beyond that. To create your very own digital product empire requires switching gears. And exactly how to switch gears is what we talk about in this episode. Get the show notes here:
June 22, 2017
Forget Traffic 2: Step by Step Plan to Get Your First Customer (Without Needing Traffic)
We've covered the theory of the "customer first" approach in the last episode and showed how it can shortcut past a lot of time wasting work and lead to building a better business, faster. But what exactly does such a customer first strategy look like? In this episode, Shane Melaugh and Hanne Vervaeck go 100% practical. Here, we lay out a step by step process you can follow, to get your first customers within the week. For this, you need nothing more than a single landing page, an Internet connection and Skype. And a bit of good old elbow grease.   Get the show notes here:
June 22, 2017
Forget Traffic 1: The Useless Obsession With Traffic Generation
Most online businesses make traffic generation a priority. After all, the more traffic you get, the better it is for your business, right? As it turns out: wrong. Especially for new businesses, focusing on traffic generation is a distraction and waste of time. And the most common approach to building an audience and business online is totally backwards. In this episode, you'll discover the "customer first" and upside down way of building a business and even getting your first customer before you ever worry about traffic. Get the show notes here:
June 21, 2017
Introducing the ActiveGrowth Podcast
In this "episode 0" introduction, you'll learn why we started the ActiveGrowth podcast (hint: it's not for a lack of podcasts in the online marketing space) and how we intend to be different.
June 20, 2017