To celebrate the 200th episode of my podcast about podcasting, I talk with John Lee Dumas about his massive podcasting success and pull tips and tricks we can use to grow our own podcasts.

John Lee Dumas is now making over $200,000 per month because of his podcast, and he gets almost 1,000,000 downloads per month from Entrepreneur on Fire. He didn't achieve this success overnight. In fact, it took a lot of hard work, time, and money to reach that success.

Listen to the episode to hear John's answers to each of these questions.

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Launching Entrepreneur on Fire

  • How big was your platform before you launched the podcast?
  • How much cash did you have when you resigned from your former job?
  • What did it cost you in time and money to launch?
  • What were your worst doubts as you were starting? (Jeffrey K. Holbrook, from
  • You have said that you didn't see any income from your podcast for about 6 months. With a daily podcast, this is the equivalent of 3 and a half years worth of weekly episodes. To what do you attribute your great success? (Andrew McGivern)
  • How many downloads per episode did you have when you approached your first sponsor? How much did you charge them?

The present

  • What is your monthly cost of living?
  • How much does it cost you to keep things running?
  • Do you pay contributors to Podcasters’ Paradise?
  • SKIP-What is your current CPM per sponsor?
  • What do you do with all the money?
  • What are the pros and cons of your—mostly—cookie-cutter approach to every interview? (Allan Misner)
  • How do you keep the energy levels so high and keep going at it seems 100%? (Gary Fawcett)
  • SKIP-What is one interviewee characteristic that inspires you to bring your A+++ game? (Dee Cote')
  • What do you say to the critics of asking the same questions?
  • What doubts do you still struggle with, even with all of your success? (Jeffrey K. Holbrook, from
  • How have you handled an interview that you felt didn’t go well, and how did you communicate it to the guest? (Bryan Entzminger)
  • If you could interview any person in history who is no longer with us, who would that be and why? (Dee Cote')
  • What's one interview pet peeve that makes you work harder (or tries your patience) during the interview? (Dee Cote')

The future

  • How much longer do you think Entrepreneur on Fire can continue? Are you afraid of running out of interviews? (John Bukenas)
  • You’ll hit episode 1,000 soon. How do you plan to celebrate? (Dee Cote')
  • What is one professional skill and one personal skill you still feel like you need to enhance? (Dee Cote')
  • SKIP-What are your plans for the future?

Applying it to the rest of us

  • What path of steady building toward an income platform would you suggest? (Jeffrey K. Holbrook, from
  • If you woke up tomorrow and Entrepreneur on Fire had disappeared along with all its assets (email list, contacts, etc.) and you had to start over with something else, how would you build an audience for a new podcast outside of the entrepreneurial niche? (Paul Clifford)
  • Here’s your chance to brag. What sets you apart from everyone else? What has enabled you to succeed where others haven’t?

Were you inspired?

Yes, John's audience and income are huge.  I hope you've seen that this is because he has thrown himself fully into actions toward his goals. He worked hard, invested a lot of resources, and it's paying him back.

Remember that “success” is up to each of us to define for ourselves. Thus, how has this conversation inspired you to redefine your success, plan your goals, or take action? Please comment in the show notes and share your story!

You can hear my appearance on Entrepreneur on Fire in episode 549 (that's where I first publicly announced My Podcast Reviews).

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“Black Friday,” “Cyber Monday,” Christmas, and this whole holiday season are great times to find amazing deals of podcasting gear, software, and other tools. I have a special email list where I'm sharing these deals as quickly as I can find them (for example, the Logitech C920 keeps going on sale for 50% off!). Click here to join and receive podcasting deal alerts.

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Ask your questions or share your feedback

  • Comment on the shownotes
  • Leave a voicemail at (903) 231-2221
  • Email (audio files welcome)

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This post may contain links to products or services with which I have an affiliate relationship and may receive compensation from your actions through such links. However, I don't let that corrupt my perspective and I don't recommend only affiliates.

About the Author
As an award-winning podcaster, Daniel J. Lewis gives you the guts and teaches you the tools to launch and improve your own podcasts for sharing your passions and finding success. Daniel creates resources for podcasters, such as the SEO for Podcasters and Zoom H6 for Podcasters courses, the Social Subscribe & Follow Icons plugin for WordPress, the My Podcast Reviews global-review aggregator, and the Podcasters' Society membership for podcasters. As a recognized authority and influencer in the podcasting industry, Daniel speaks on podcasting and hosts his own podcast about how to podcast. Daniel's other podcasts, a clean-comedy podcast, and the #1 unofficial podcast for ABC's hit drama Once Upon a Time, have also been nominated for multiple awards. Daniel and his son live near Cincinnati.
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John Lee Dumas
9 years ago

Thanks Daniel! Honored to have been a guest and thank you for the amazing opportunity!

Jeff Brown
9 years ago
Reply to  John Lee Dumas

Enjoyed this @JohnLeeDumas:disqus (and Daniel). Thanks for such a great conversation.

Jason Bay
Jason Bay
9 years ago

Great interview John! This is so cool to hear your perspective on your business and where it’s heading. Big fan of the show of course!

Jason Bay
Jason Bay
9 years ago

I tend to want to do as much as I can by myself. It was great hearing John’s perspective on hiring mentors and getting the help from as many other people as possible.

John Lee Dumas
9 years ago
Reply to  Jason Bay

Thanks JB…love your hustle!

9 years ago

Daniel, thank you for putting this program together. I enjoyed the turnabout questions.

Glen Duggan
Glen Duggan
9 years ago

Thank you Daniel for two hundred excellent episodes and for giving me the audacity to podcast and thank you John for being an inspiration to get started podcasting.

I owe you both a drink – coffee, or Guinness – whichever suits, if you ever come to Dublin. Cheers, Glen.

John Lee Dumas
9 years ago
Reply to  Glen Duggan

I’ll take that coffee Glen…you rock!

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