Organic growth strategies for creators with Kevin Indig

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Are you wondering why your growth strategies aren't working?

Kevin Indig is all about organic growth. With over 8.8k newsletter subscribers and a Twitter and LinkedIn following of over 30k, Kevin has led SEO and growth at companies like Shopify and Snapchat and shares his best strategies in his newsletter.

In this episode of Creators on Air, we talk about the best growth strategies on different platforms, how to work with sponsors, and how to best manage your time as a creator.

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Episode Transcript

Akta: All creators want to grow organically, but what exactly does that mean? 

Kevin: The content you create, whether it's LinkedIn Post or newsletters, it is a product. And to build a really good product, you need to put in the time and you need to make it really, really good. 

Akta: Kevin Indig has helped companies like Shopify and Snapchat with their SEO and organic growth.

He's also grown his own platforms. With over 8,800 subscribers on his newsletter and over 30,000 followers on Twitter and LinkedIn. In today's episode, Kevin shares how creators can grow and work with sponsors organically. 

Kevin: Yeah, it's interesting. C you know, there's this test called Strength Finders, and it is basically test tab, as the name says, finder Strengths, and I'm very high on learning and input.

Meaning I take a ton of notes all the time to process and learn this stuff that is going on around me. And I realized at some point that I have all these notes already about these various topics that occur in my work. And at some point I thought, why not share it? Why not send this out? So it started literally as a memo.

To a trusted circle of industry, friends, colleagues, uh, and some other companies who I was close with, and it turned into this bigger newsletter, which now has almost 9,000 subscribers. 

Akta: Wow. And in that newsletter you share organic growth strategies. What does that actually mean? Like what is organic growth?

Kevin: It means a lot that you asked that because I, I am very passionate about this topic. Um, or organic growth in a nutshell is a combination of seo, so search engine optimization, c r o, which is conversion optimization and email marketing. The reason that I'm so passionate about organic growth is not because I need another buzzword for SEO or inbound marketing or you know, one of these trendy names, but cause it symbolizes that this old school idea of search engine optimization does not work anymore.

So, old school idea is just, you know, you, we bring a lot of traffic to the website and this new approach, this necessary required approach. Is that this traffic needs to do something right? So people come into your site, they need to convert in some sort of way, and it's not always buying a product or signing up for something.

In a lot of cases, it can also just be signing up for the email newsletter. Mm-hmm. Or exploring the site a bit more. And so it was, it is critically important to me to capture that approach in a word, which is organic growth. But there is another dimension to it, which I'm also very passionate about, which is this idea of growth.

Right. So growth comes from this Silicon Valley playbook. Just as a background, I lived in Silicon Valley for, for six years, so I, I consider this kind of my school. And this playbook basically says that you want a very highly measured and iter iterative approach to growth. It is a crossover between marketing and product, but organic growth is often mistaken for this.

Basically, oh, it's just good marketing. That's not what it is. It's a very different idea than marketing. A growth approach to marketing channels and growth means highly measured, so you follow the scientific method. Lots of experiments and hypothesis. A very rigid approach to exploring what works. You measure input and output metrics very deliberately, and you go out to basically find these systems, these self-reinforcing loops that you can repeat over and over again to basically, Grow and induce step changes.

Akta: I think it's really interesting because you mentioned that you work for companies, but then you also have your own newsletter. How does growth differ between, you know, companies who already have a product versus, for example, creators who are growing an audience but don't necessarily know what their business.

Looks like yet. 

Kevin: Yeah, it's a fantastic question. I think the same principles apply here, right? So one of the growth principles is, uh, product market fit super important and, and creators should think about that as well, where you really want to think about how do I measure whether I put something out? That really resonates with people, and one strong indicator for SaaS products, marketplaces, and creators as well is simply how many, like do you get?

Really good feedback, good testimonials? Are people responding to you and reaching out, saying, Hey, I love your stuff. That is a strong indicator. Does it grow organically? So does your newsletter or whatever, whatever you create. Does it grow without you going out and spreading the word that is a super strong indicator of product market fit.

And then lastly, can you measure retention in some way? So for products, it's, it's relatively easy. It's basically how long, like the engagement rate, are people staying on for 12 months? Are they jumping off after three? And for newsletters, it could be how many engaged users you have, how many emails do they open, what's their consistent open rate.

So I'm not talking about the aggregate open rate, which can mask that older cohorts bounce and don't open your emails again. I'm talking about how many of, uh, how many subscribers keep opening every email or every other email. It's a different way to measure, but it's a strong indicator of retention and product market fit, and that's the same across companies and creators alike.

Akta: And have you found any strategies that have especially helped you to grow your 

Kevin: newsletter? I have, and I wanna say upfront that probably every, every guest, and I'm, I'm a long-term listener, so I know that guests say this, but I wanna highlight as well how important the quality of your content is because I, for myself, rediscovered that my definition of quality was way too low, right?

You have to realize that there are millions of creators out there who consistently create content. And it's very likely that even if you are in a small niche or vertical, there might be at least a couple of really good other creators out there. So I think it's very rare to not have any competition. And so you need to set the bar for content quality extremely high just to sim signify or to explain what that means.

You cannot create a good newsletter and spend 20 minutes on the email. You just can't, like, I wanna see the creator who like, you know, who builds a big following and monetizes that and has spend such little time on their email. I spent between four to 10 hours on every email, sometimes 20 to 30. Oh wow.

And I think, yeah, I think there's this kind of myth out there that especially new creators, you know, fall into. And think, oh yeah, you know, I just do a little bit of stuff here and a little bit of stuff there. But it's a business. You need to treat it like a business and you need to spend a lot of time in creating a good product because that's what it's all about.

Right? So tying it back to organic growth, the, the stuff, the content you create, whether it's LinkedIn Post or newsletters, it is a product. And to build a really good product, you need to put in the time and you need to make it really, really good. So that being that out of the way. There are the standard tips that work for me just like everyone else, and I just wanna mention them because they do work, right?

One is cross referrals with other newsletters or cross promotions. Those are really good, especially when they have a high topic fit. Meaning, you know, I write about organic growth and if I, if there's another newsletter about fitness, it probably doesn't make sense for us to collaborate. I think it's common sense.

A LinkedIn post and and Twitter threads. Of course, those work pretty good, even though I have to say LinkedIn is kind of faded, sorry, Twitter is kind of fading and it's kind of getting worse. And of course, good landing page optimization, right? Like you wanna sell yourself good copy, good cta. There all sorts of things, like smaller things you can do, like highlight how many subscribers you already have as a way to, you know, signal credibility and trustworthiness and all that kind of stuff.

But here are three things that are not mentioned a lot. Number one is if possible, you want to collaborate with other creators and have them contribute to your content, right? So for me, I started recently doing that and really helped me reignite my new set of growth. I ask other experts in the field what has worked for them and what strategies they recommend.

I. And then they become collaborators and contributors to your content. And then in return, they also share that content with their audience, right? They're promoted and it signals credibility and it signals that there is deeper value because it's not just my opinion or my experience, but the experience of many other people who might work at highly valued and very popular brands.

The other thing, and that's a bit of a, of a contrarian point, maybe. Is that in my mind, the best referrals come from fans, not incentives. So what that means is, I know it's super popular to use these kind of, uh, giveaways and, and kind of referral programs because they have worked really well for big newsletters like the Hustle and the Skim.

I. But I think as a single creator, you actually wanna raise fans who share your content because they really love it. And it goes back to this idea of product market fit, right? If you have a lot of people coming to you saying, I really love this content, it is a small step to then ask like, Hey, would you be open to sharing it?

Or, you know, like, amazing. I appreciate that. One way you can support me is just by, by being loud about it and not expect, not this kind of like incentivized, uh, referral where it's like, oh, you get this money, or you get this swag if you refer. Because then people do it for the swag and not because they love your content, which means that you get a lot of.

New subscribers and followers who are not engaged and who might bounce, and that kind of dead weight doesn't really help you. It looks nice in the numbers. I get that I'm vain too, but it doesn't really help you grow a business. And then the last one, of course is seo. I have to mention and plug SEO O. And I found that way too many creators, they hide their content in newsletters and they don't surface it to the web.

So one of the best things you can do to grow, to grow your newsletter is to first of all have a website. Um, have a landing page for a newsletter, as I mentioned earlier, but also repurpose some of your best performing newsletter posts into block articles. And then basically tell people like, Hey, this is content you can find.

On the newsletter on a regular basis. So I'm using Ghost for my newsletter, which allows me to basically write a blog article, but also send that out as a newsletter. And the good thing about it is that these blog articles, they get traction in organic search, they get traffic, and that traffic converts then to new newsletter subscribers.

Actually my my second biggest source of new subscribers. So it means you have to find the balance between writing for search and writing something that is more typical newsletter format. But the balance is possible and it is a powerful driver because it's free traffic and you don't have to do anything to get it other than create good content.

Mm-hmm. I think 

Akta: those are some really good tips, and I like that you've added some tips that we maybe haven't heard before. Do you have a process for kind of sitting down and analyzing what's working, what's not working, you know, what your growth rate is looking like, like what does that process look 

Kevin: like?

Another great question cuz I do this on a regular basis and I feel like too many creators don't spend enough time. So I track, I look at all the stats from LinkedIn, Twitter, my newsletter, and I look at what is the open rate and engagement rate and what links do people click. So I have a top ad in my newsletters and I'm very adamant about looking at.

Do people click the newsletter ad And I have a good idea of what the percentage is. So typically for every newsletter as sent out, four to five, sometimes six people, uh, who open the newsletter, click the top ad. And it's important for me to measure because I want that ad to make sense for my audience.

It's basically a quality proxy for whether that ad is relevant to my audience or not. So that helps me to understand if I collaborate with the right companies. And then I also wanna see do they click through. So as I mentioned earlier, I'm using ghost. And you can, uh, basically click through to a block article to read this in the web version.

And I wanna see how many subscribers open a newsletter and click through to the block article. And it's the same type of content, but sometimes is a bit better displayed on mobile devices. Um, and then what other links are people clicking? Right? And my, my newsletter is not a curated list of links, so it's not the, the most important piece, but I wanna see are people engaging.

And so I, I look at engagement in different ways. One is of course opening the, the email, but then how many subscribers take any sort of action after opening the email? And that is incredibly important to me. The next thing that Ghost has recently introduced is, uh, feedback. So you can get a thumbs up or thumbs down for every email, and I'm looking at how many.

Openers, actually email openers actually use their feedback at all. And of course, how many thumbs up do I get? And uh, that is a great way for me to discover what topics really resonate with my audience and whatnot. And that changes over time as the newsletter grows and as maybe new segments and new types of, uh, users subscribe.

Akta: And then you also have your podcast as well. How has growth for your podcast differed to the newsletter and your strategies as well for growing it? 

Kevin: Yeah. Yeah. I, I find podcast is, um, probably a lot of people will, will think or would say the opposite, but I find regularly putting out a good podcast is a completely different game than writing content.

And maybe it's because I'm so prone to taking notes and it comes a bit more easy to me. But, um, I found that growing a podcast, there are a couple of ways you can, um, that help. One is, Um, as an seo, of course, I look at the search results a lot and Google has started to display these video carousels more with a feature that is called Key Moments in Video.

And it is basically a, an extraction of a specific moment in a video that helps to answer the user's question. Specifically, and you can use it to your advantage by looking at what topics and keywords are important for you in your space, and then deliberately creating content like a, like a podcast or, or a video, and using timestamps to optimize for these searches.

So when you searchers are looking for something like how to record a podcast, just to provide a meta example, and you create a, you create a podcast yourself, or you talk to someone about how to create a podcast, make sure that you include at least one timestamp. That is exactly how to create a podcast because there's a high chance that Google might surface that in the search results, which then can fuel the growth of your YouTube channel or podcast in general.

And then the other thing is, I started, I learned this from, from Joe Rogan and, and I don't know Joe Rogan, but I just, I, I dissected his YouTube channel. One thing that he does really well is he cuts out these little snippets of videos and it, and he optimizes them in for the same types of things, right?

So for example, when he has Andrew Huberman on. Who is super big about, uh, supplements and working out and, and wealth and, and fitness. Uh, he will then take a one to two, maybe three minute snippet that talks about a specific topic, like what are the top supplements for sleep? And then that snippet is just optimized for the question, what to, what supplements to take.

To sleep better. And he does that very deliberately cuz he knows that these snippets perform well in Google search, but also in YouTube search. And of course you also wanna do the same things for YouTube short. So thi this kind of idea of optimizing parts of your podcast for specific subtopics and searches has worked really, really well.

Akta: So you think then that having YouTube and having video versions of a podcast is pretty much like a, you need to do that then? 

Kevin: I think you need to do that. I'm also gonna say it is probably easier to start a podcast with audio only simply cuz you have so much more post-production work. I work with an editor who does amazing things and who helps us, you know, who help allows me and my co-host Eli to create out continent scale.

But yeah, ideally you have, uh, video 

Akta: and what do you think about? Trends. So I mean, you've mentioned YouTube shorts and tos. When a creator is trying to grow, do you think. You know, latching onto trends is important as part of their growth strategy. 

Kevin: Such a good question. I, I would say it depends a little bit on the trend itself.

Sometimes you have these tectonic shifts, so right now, for example, in surge and seo, we are seeing a massive tectonic shift. Two days ago, Google announced a new AI integration and search, and that will definitely r ruffle the feathers. So, I wouldn't, I would say there's no way around that trend. But then there are these other smaller things like BROS on LinkedIn was a thing a couple years ago where everything is a single line and it's like, it's very highly tuned to catching attention and being very clickbait.

Uh, I remember when popups were, became, became a thing and these email mats, and you really wanna ask yourself when it comes to tr to a trans. What is the trade off and user experience? How much friction do I create for, for users to experience value? And I always fared very well in not jumping on another trend to short term boost my numbers and my, you know, whether it's subscribers or open rates.

But if it's in line with user value, right? If it's about how to better structure a post, how to better create images or graphics, those kind of things, then I'm all for it. So there is this, there is a balance between friction and boosting your numbers, and then 

Akta: you also have a large audience on Twitter and LinkedIn.

How does growth differ when it's on, you know, a different platform that's not your own? So you are kind of a little bit more, I don't wanna say dependent on an algorithm, but ass, an algorithm involved, like how digital strategy change. 

Kevin: Yeah. Yeah. I, I think you need to, if, if you grow on another platform, and I would wanna point out that is normal, right?

You build your own platform, that is super important. For example, like I'm a big proponent of owning your own email list, having your own website, having a platform that you can control and change. But then you feed that by growing another platforms. And these other platforms don't love it when you take away their traffic, right?

So you have to balance growing your audience on that platform, but then also, Taken a little bit of that audience and bring it over to your own platform. And that is a long-term game. There is no, no short-term or shortcuts, short-term thinking or shortcuts and, uh, you wanna play the game. So on LinkedIn, for example, there's some really good experiments and these kind of, uh, studies and analysis about how the algorithm works.

And as somebody who's been dealing with algorithms for the last 13, 14, 15 years, those change on an ongoing basis, right? So part of it is knowing what works right now and then adapting quickly when something changes. So on LinkedIn, for example, documents and these image carousels work so much better than regular text posts and even video.

Actually video doesn't work that well on LinkedIn unless it's live video. So you wanna figure out how to learn that for yourself. How do you build a body of knowledge? For how to play the game, and then two, play the game and play it really well, which demands focus and demands reps, as I mentioned earlier, it takes a certain amount of time and then that's the Heaven exit plan for what happens when this platform goes away.

So I would feel very funny if. I had all of my followers on LinkedIn and no email list at all. They, they would worry me a lot. 

Akta: Yeah. And I have to ask like, how are you managing like multiple platforms, the newsletter and two podcasts? 

Kevin: So one part of it is, is the time dedication and I, I just, two months ago we had a daughter, so I, I'm relearning what it means.

Oh, congrats. Thank you. Thank you. So I'm relearning what it means to, you know, to live with more responsibility and how to optimize your time. For the last, you know, 15 ish years or so, I, I was able to be very selfish and I really, truly love what I do with all my heart, and I don't mind wor, it's not really work for me most of the time.

There's some things I feel like work of course, but 80, 90% of it is being grateful for being able to make a living off of that. Every day. I can't believe I wake up and I'm like, wow, I'm getting paid for, this is amazing. So part of it is, is just gratitude. The other part is Timeboxing. I'm a huge fan of Timeboxing, dedicating a specific amount of time to a task.

So on my calendar, I actually blocked out time for newsletter of writing for social posts, for podcast recording. And I'm doing that not just to manage and block my time, but also because. It is hard to be satisfied as a creator with your work. I'm sure everybody can relate to this, but I'm never a hundred percent happy with anything I put out.

So you need to cut yourself off and say, look, this is all I can dedicate to that, and I'll try to make it as good as possible, but if it's not better than that or if I don't love it, I'll still put it out and I can accept that not everything I put out is. Amazing. And it cannot be by definition. So that's one thing.

And then the other thing is I'm a ferocious note taker. I consume very intentionally. So when I watch a video, for example, I will take notes. My books are, I love paper books. I will take notes with a pen and paper and then put these notes into notion and connect them and reflect and synthesize. So I put a lot of work into.

Truly learning from everything that I consume. 

Akta: I really like how you re like, refer to time blocking as something that helps you with perfectionism versus like just focusing on the productivity elements. I think that's so important. Um, I wanna discuss your revenue streams as a creator. So what are they currently in?

Like how do they cover your different platforms? 

Kevin: Yeah, so I would say so the biggest one is by far the newsletter that makes by far the biggest ads, the biggest ad revenue. And then, uh, I would say 30 to 40% come from social posts. And that is in part, intentional. I see social. Ads or, or sponsored posts.

Better said, is something like an appetizer to a bigger menu. So I'm very interested in long-term partnerships with companies who advertise, oh, don't love this. Oh, let me advertise, advertise once on your newsletter, or Let's do one social sponsored post and then never anything again. And I'm saying that because I put a lot of time in all these.

These ads and then a copy and the creative. But anyway, so about 30, 40% comes from social posts and then 70% from the newsletter. Been slow to monetize the podcasts simply because I really wanna make sure that I grow at first, and there will be creators out there who have a valid point when they say, oh, you should start and charge right away, or at least get users habituated.

To advertising, but I myself, I'm very ad adverse, right? I'm very better said sales adverse. And I don't love ads that much, so just cause I preferred myself. I've decided to be very cautious with ads on the podcast before growing them to a much larger audience. And so the majority really comes from the newsletter.

Akta: And how are you finding sponsors and making sure that you are able to work with them on a longer term basis versus a one-off? 

Kevin: That's funny because most new, most sponsors find me so far, I hadn't really have to go out and look for sponsors. Except for the podcast where sometimes we'll reach out to companies when we have an episode that really fits their product.

So we recorded an an episode about influencer marketing, for example, and we reached out to Intel Ilu, which we know is a really good marketplace for influencers, because we thought that would be a great fit. And they immediately recognized that. They said, yes, sure, no problem. And there was a. Just a tight fit for us and for them.

But most of the time, I'm lucky that sponsors find me, and the way that they find me is because they see. Newsletter ads and sometimes sponsored social posts and they see that they work well. And it goes back to this whole thread they've been talking about in this episode, which is strong product, market fit and engaged audiences, right?

They see that when I post something on, on LinkedIn, for example, about a new product, I get, you know, 30,000, 40,000 impressions or I get a hundred comments and people are really passionate about this. So that makes it easy for other sponsors to say, Hey, we should partner up with Kevin. And then it goes back to, Putting in the time to make the sponsored post or the newsletter ad really, really good, make sure it doesn't feel like a sponsored post.

Right? That's a maybe a contrarian take here. I, I think, you know, there's a, a cost to running sponsored posts or ads that are not a good fit for the audience. And if you do that too much, then people will just start to tune out your content. And so to me it is much more important to have. An advertiser who really fits my audience, who I can create content together with that is informative and educational.

And by the way, also sponsored because I know it will engage my audience and not feel like a weird detour or like trade off that my audience has to take on account. So that also helps with other sponsors seeing this and saying, yeah, I wanna, I wanna do the same thing. Mm-hmm. 

Akta: So are your ads more like part of your newsletter then versus like a separate section?

Is that how you try and make it seem like? Less of an interruption. That's 

Kevin: exactly it. Yes. It has to fit my overall narrative. Right. My big topics, and ideally, I mean, the, the best case is it really fits the, the topic of the newsletter. I'm gonna be honest, that's not always possible, right? Like, uh, sometimes that's a slightly different topic, but it's never completely off and never write about, you know, email marketing and then also have a sponsored ad from Jim Shark, right?

Yeah. There is a, a topical fit to my audience. 

Akta: And I was looking at your passionfroot page earlier, and you negotiate for your newsletter in a podcast, but you have set prices for social media posts. Why was that your pricing strategy? 

Kevin: I wanted to sell sponsored posts as something like an entrance to a longer partnership.

And Okay. Most companies who start with a sponsored post on social. Eventually become newsletter advertisers, and my newsletter ad is more expensive. Just to be honest and upfront about that. Sponsored pose are a low stakes way to explore if this is a good fit, if we work well together and if my audience resonates with them, that it's a totally valid, you know, point that sometimes it's just not a great fit and it's a much lower risk for sponsors and for myself, if we try that on a sponsored post first instead of a newsletter ad.

Mm. I think 

Akta: that's actually a really good idea. And then how do you go about the negotiation process and like setting your fees when you are then working with brands? 

Kevin: I have a bit of a contrarian take here as well. Some brands really love this idea of a cpm, right? They say, oh, I want to pay between 10 and maybe $30, uh, for every thousand subscribers that you have.

And that is not really. That's not really good fit for me because I know that not every subscribers alike. There's some subscribers in my list who are partners at venture capital firms or private equity companies, or they are executives at big SaaS startups or marketplaces, and some of them are. Junior marketers at companies.

And of course there there's a difference here. I have many decision makers in my audience and there might be other newsletters who have maybe 50,000 subscribers, but they have maybe more people in their audience who are on entry level. It's not decision makers. So I do really believe in, I. Not every subscriber is alike, and as a result, it's much more of supply and demand negotiation that I have.

So I'm very lucky that my newsletter is often booked out months in advance. Matter of fact, you know, an advertiser, about a year ago, they bought six months of all the newsletter ads. Wow. And we would've bought 12 months if I had let them. But you know, that's like, I'm very blessed with that. And, uh, that means for me it's more of a supply and demand situation.

So if somebody doesn't want to, Pay the price that I'm asking for, then I know somebody else will. And that is a different model. And I, I think, you know, it's just a different option. It's just a different strategy. I think CPM is valid for some advertisers, and then a value base is valid in other situations.

But I run a supply and demand kind of price, which means that technically, you know, if every advertiser says, I don't want advertis, I have to go down with my price. Uh, but so far it's been, uh, incredibly effective because advertisers see the returns. 

Akta: Yeah, and it makes sense if you've got sponsors lined up.

Um, I'm quite shocked that, that you've been able to have it booked up for six, 12 months. That's a lot. How do you then stay track, stay on top of, you know, all the sponsors that you've got lined up and all the copy that you need to kind of. Get in there, like, how are you managing it all? 

Kevin: Passionfroot. Uh, that's why I'm a excited customer and user of passionfroot.

But, uh, in terms of the, the copy and everything, I have a Google Doc. Very, very basic. It has three parts. One is the copy, the next is creative, and then commons. And within copy there's a very basic framework, which is called Problem agitation and Solution. It's a very, very simple copywriting framework. I use that with, uh, all the ads simply because it helps structure the ad and it helps us quickly get to a good copy and creative.

And so I'm sharing that with the advertiser. We're going back and forth a couple of times. I usually have a strong hand on the copy. I really wanna help and I wanna, I want the ad to sound almost like it comes from me, right? This native integration. Uh, I have the luxury of, of being able to do that as a creator, whereas many publishers probably don't have that, right, or, or marketplaces.

They can't go as deep on the ad, but I want to because it's part of the overall experience. And so we go back and forth on this document and once it's a fit, I'm just, you know, it's just coming, kind of being scheduled and my content calendar and goes forward from there. And how 

Akta: have things changed for you since using Passionfroot to help you manage those sponsorships?

Kevin: I have a lot more time. I, you know, I used to manage everything with a spreadsheet and, uh, not that well, and there's a lot of communication with, uh, sponsors, which is totally fine and in my interest as well. But having all of that on one platform is incredibly helpful. I love that you can go through different stages, like, you know, this like request and then you negotiate and then you send a proposal and then you, you run the ad and you ask for a payment.

So, It feels like it's five or maybe more steps on one platform that make it super simple, especially cognitively, right? Having a spreadsheet and then emails and then Google Docs and everything all over the place just mentally drains you so much. And we spoke earlier about how I'm able to manage all this, uh, content and the advisory and uh, part of that is just.

Having things in fewer places and having them more organized so that when I spend an hour a week or you know, however long, uh, on, on sponsorships, I know where to go. I know how to prioritize, I know what to do. And then, you know, once it's done, I'm out. And I don't have to constantly think about, oh, did I forget about this or that, or have I really done this?

It's all in one platform. 

Akta: I'm so happy to hear that. It's so nice to hear someone who's actually a user, you know, actually finding it such a positive experience. I'm gonna switch to a quick fire round now, so I'm gonna ask you five questions that I ask every creator that comes on air. Um, you're a listener, so I'm sure you know the questions already, but what's your favorite thing about being a creator?

Kevin: To, I know most people say freedom, uh, and sure freedom is nice, but what it is to me really is being paid to explore ideas. I really love to maybe brainstorm or think about things and then explore what that means, make something out of it, and then bring it out to the world. That's just incredibly fueling to me.

That's incre incredibly exciting to me. So being able to be paid for that is incredible. 

Akta: I love that answer. And what's something that gives you the most inspiration for 

Kevin: what you create? It's really other creators and books. So I'm a huge fan of paper books and I've tried Kindle. Um, I have an iPad. I've tried audio books and it's just not the same.

And what I learned is that there are different types of reading, right? So there's a basic elementary reading, which you learn in elementary school. How, how do words make sense? Then there's analytical reading where you start to. Maybe extract the key points and topics of a book. And then there's this thing called SY topical reading, where instead of starting with a book, you start with a question.

And then you go out and see which books might help you answer that question. And then you extract the key points and arguments of that book to really help you answer that question is cover new questions. And it's this kind of, it's almost like a conversation with the author and that is incredibly inspiring because you all of a sudden see, oh, this is how they approach this topic.

And then there's this other author who kind of has a different viewpoint and you learn so much in the process and that is incredibly inspiring. 

Akta: Mm. I think that's such an interesting answer. Um, what's one tool that helps you as a creator? 

Kevin: Yeah, I knew that question was coming to do that. So I'm using, you know, I'm big, big fan of notion.

Uh, I think so many people are saying that, uh, obviously passionfroot for, for all the management, uh, And then if I were to maybe a more less expected answer, it could be pen and paper, cuz I think there is a brainstorming way or approach with pen and paper that you cannot yet replicate with, even with great tools like, like Miro or Figma, which are amazing and use all the time.

But this idea of this concept of exploring an idea with pen and paper is still irreplaceable in my mind. 

Akta: I'm a pen and paper person myself, so I understand that. Um, what's something that helps you with your creator work-life balance? 

Kevin: Working out? I'm a huge avid, uh, you know, uh, fitness person and, uh, when I don't work out for a couple of days, then I get grumpy and I get, you know, imbalance.

So. It's really the place where I can incubate so many ideas, cuz I don't, I'm not on my phone typically. I, I track my, my workouts, my sets and reps and stuff. Sure. But, uh, I'm trying to not consume, I'm trying to not ideate. And so having this, having these 60 to 90 minutes where you don't create and you don't think about it.

It's a time where ideas can incubate subconsciously and they can kind of, you know, ripen and grow and groom. And then typically at the end of the workout, I already have three ideas of things that I want to do or three new viewpoints or, you know, uh, things that come into awareness. So that is critical for me.

Akta: And what's one piece of advice that you would give to other creators? 

Kevin: Don't underestimate advising. So I'm spending a lot of time actually advising companies and. All the content that I have put out is. Has helped me tremendously with that. You know, it helped me basically build mid to high six figure business.

And the reason is because is that other companies and decision makers, they see how you think, they see your content. They basically can get a, a trailer for what a potential collaboration might look like, and they start to relate to you. It's one of the reasons why I wanted to start a podcast is because it makes you as a creator so much more.

Multi-dimensional and multi-modal. It's just somewhere much more relatable than people seeing a LinkedIn post. That's where it maybe starts, but having all this content out there gives you tremendous credibility when working with companies and working at companies as well. When I was working at Shopify, there were many cases where people might have not met me before, but they had seen some of my content, and that gave them a sense for what I'm interested in, what I care about and how I tick.

And so I think underestimating these second order effects of content that you put out there. That is my biggest tip for advisors. I know it's a bit of invoked to say, ah, don't waste your time getting paid by the hour. And, you know, uh, like you wanna scale and you wanna make money while you sleep, but it depends on how much you get paid by the hour.

I'm perfectly fine charging. I mean, I'm not charging by the hour actually, but, you know, like scaling my, you know, scaling income with time just depends on how much you make. So, yeah, I just wanted to put that out there cause I feel like it's, it, it works much better than a lot of people make it seem. Yeah, I love 

Akta: that answer cause I feel like something that's not really been said on the podcast before.

So I hope that gives our listeners something new to think about. Thank you so much, Kevin, for coming on on air. Um, this has been such an interesting conversation. I really appreciate you sharing your growth and monetization strategies with us. 

Kevin: Thank you Tota again, long-term listener. Uh, and, and you know, when, when you reached out, I was very, very honored to be on this Was not disappointing.

The slightest was, uh, better than I expected. So thanks for the great prep. Oh, it 

Akta: was so nice. And the great questions of course, and it was Honor is asked. To be honest. We're so happy to have you as a user. Oh, thank you so much. I hope you found the organic growth strategies that Kevin shared in today's episode helpful, and I'm really glad that he's enjoying using Passionfroot.

If you are also working with sponsors and want to set up your own page, check out to get early access. I'll see you in the next episode.