BTM S1E14 Adam Bird
[00:00:00] Welcome to beyond the microphone, a podcast about podcasters and the stories of how their shows came together, grew and what they’ve discovered along the way. I’m your host, Adam Baruh.
Adam Baruh: So before we get into our interview with our guest today, I want to talk about AI tools and you know, it’s all the rage.
And you know, I went to PodFest back, which is like a podcasting trade show back. I think it was like in January of this year and it was, you know, all the buzz. Everything was, you know, chat GPT and how AI is gonna, you know, become very much a part of, of what we do as podcasters. And. You know, before that trade show, I didn’t really know a whole lot about it.
I mean, I had heard a chat GPT, but I never really knew what it was, to be honest, like the first time somebody showed me, I was like, okay, wow, this is going to [00:01:00] be, um, you know, in the next five years, I mean, you know, talk about like the, when the internet first came out or cell phones, I mean, one of those, like hugely game changing shifts, um, even, you know, as a society, I mean, because like, You know, it’s starting to become part of a lot of different industries.
And so. You know, for podcasting in particular, um, I use, um, some tools and it has absolutely saved so much of my time. So for example, um, the tool that I use, it will generate show notes, podcast description, title. Um, it’ll even recommend. Quotes are like hooks to use, um, you know, in marketing, short form video and that sort of thing.
It’ll write a LinkedIn post, an Instagram post, all of that for me. And, you know, while. You know, I’m not just going to take verbatim, like what it generates and [00:02:00] immediately publish it. I mean, I have, because sometimes that actually is, it doesn’t really require, you know, a lot of changes. But, uh, you know, for the most part, I mean, in particular show notes, like it does a really good job of, you know, summarizing the key points, writing the basic description, kind of outlining the chapters.
Um, even if you have in your transcripts, like the timestamps, it’ll create the chapters with timestamps. You can copy and paste that into Buzzsprout or YouTube or wherever you’re publishing. And you know, you don’t have to like spend time thinking about that stuff. So for me as a production company, you know, one of the things that we used to do before we started using AI is ask my hosts, okay, go through, you know, come back to me with what you want for a title for your show notes.
And it’s not only time consuming for me, it’s time consuming for everybody. And so when we started using these AI tools, and I went to my host and I said, Hey, you know, we’ve got this tool now. Like, you know, would you like to see what this [00:03:00] does? And, and would you like to use it? And she was like, Um, this is going to save me time.
Uh, yeah. So check out, you know, there’s lots of different tools out there. Buzzsprout has co host AI, PodTask. I mean, there’s, there’s a number of them and they’re, they’re growing. You know, all the time you see like even Riverside that we’re recording on, um, it’s got transcription in there, so check it out, check out how you can save time with these AI tools, because really that’s what it’s all about.
We want you guys to avoid pod fade. You know, burnout and really focus your time on the best strategic uses of your time so that you can continue to, to feed that fire, you know, with the passion and purpose, you know, which is what got you into podcasting.
So let’s introduce our guest today. His name is Adam Bird.
He’s a serial entrepreneur, podcast host, experienced producer and publisher and public speaker. He has an extensive background in starting and managing his own businesses. [00:04:00] He’s a single parent while in the military and investing his time and money in other businesses and networking. So Adam, welcome to beyond the microphone.
Um, You know, there’s a lot of like alignment with what you’re doing and what I’m doing. Not only the fact that we have the same name and our last name begins with the same letter. I, in fact, when I was writing up the production notes here, I kept, um, like my fingers just kept wanting to write Adam Baru.
It was like, no, Adam Bird. I had to like go back and change a couple of those, but, uh, welcome to beyond the microphone. I’m so happy that you’re here today.
Adam Bird: I appreciate the being on here. Thank you.
Adam Baruh: Yeah, you bet. So, I mean, let’s start with the heroes media group and, you know, however far back you want to go talking about even like, you know, what inspired you to, to create that production company and what you’re doing with it. Because here, you know, one of the main things we do here on beyond the microphone is get into the stories of how [00:05:00] podcasters, you know, came into this industry because I, you know, I love those stories and everybody seems to have a story.
So tell us your story, Adam.
Adam Bird: So it, I got into this business back in probably 2011, end of 2011, 2012, and, and it was by complete accident. I was, uh, I cut my teeth in terrestrial radios, how, how it started in Scottsdale, Arizona at the time. And, uh, I was, I was a guest on a Vietnam veteran had a show and, and, uh, was talking about education and kind of.
Caught the bug. I was like, man, that was a lot of fun. He asked me to come back a couple of weeks later, a couple of weeks later, I went back and then, uh, and then. Was every other week. And then it was every week. And then finally, uh, um, a buddy of mine, him and I decided, Hey, let’s, let’s do this, but let’s do it online.
So, you know, two army vets, we can say whatever we want and not get censored for it because, uh, shockingly enough, like our, our vocabulary was full of four letter words that you can’t say on regular radio. [00:06:00] So it was just kind of like, let’s, let’s do that. We’re going to be entertaining. And that’s how it started.
So we, we. I don’t know if it was the very first, but we were one of the very first, if not the first all veteran podcast network, um, that we had started in 2012. And that was kind of early on in 2012. And we ran, ran that till summer of 2015. And then, uh, we just had different ideas and different directions that we wanted to go.
So we agreed to shut that down. Business down the next day. I filed paperwork for, uh, what is now known as heroes media group and brought some shows over to that platform. And it really just started off as, as just. Teaching people to podcast. I, I had had a show that was successful, uh, during the first, you know, uh, business venture.
And then I, I started another show that I currently have called The Decision Hour. Uh, that’s one of the shows that I host and people just kept asking me. I was like, okay, I’ll, I’ll just do this. [00:07:00] And then they were like, Hey, can you edit this stuff for me? And I was like, I guess I’ll learn how. So I just kind of like. You know, endless nights of watching YouTube videos and going to conferences. You mentioned Podfest. Eventually I went, went to that in 2020, spoke at that at a, at a breakout session. And, uh, it just kind of grew from there. And then from, from there, we, we were helping people create their podcast, monetize their podcasts.
And then, uh, then I created a directory. So we, we started hosting, we have a hosting. Option now is as well. So we offer anything full range that’s, you know, if it has to do with a podcast, we can help you with it. And then, uh, I’d say 2016, 2017, I had a friend of mine approach me and says, Hey, I want to create an audio book.
So that started our publishing department. So now we do full production and audio books, uh, and stuff as well. And then it’s just been, been growing ever since.
Adam Baruh: Okay. And so is there a particular, um, like focus that [00:08:00] you have as a, as a production company or is it, is the focus maybe just kind of working with veterans or like, you know, how do you, what’s the cohesive glue that kind of ties us together?
Adam Bird: It’s probably people that support community heroes. So our thing is community heroes, right? Be a community hero and anybody can be a hero, right? Let’s be clear on that. But our definition is community hero is you have your veterans, your military firefighters, first responders, um, educators, and then there’s a clergy piece in it as well.
And you don’t have to be one of those or you, you don’t have to have had worked in one of those fields. We just ask that you support. Those community heroes are what we call community heroes, and it’s just kind of grown, grown from that.
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Adam Baruh: Okay. Now, you know, the people that you work with, um, You know, I know for at least for me, when I got into it, I mean, you know, it was completely something new, something far different from my normal line of work. Right. Um, which is an I. T. consulting. So, you know, while a lot of those kind of skills help play out with what I’m doing now in podcasting, like, You know, talk to me a little bit about your own process when you, I mean, you mentioned, you know, you kind of got into broadcasting first, which I’m sure helped as you kind of then went into podcasting, but even [00:11:00] talk about, you know, people that you work with, um, just that evolution from going from idea concept to starting to like, you know, formulate a game plan, like identify a podcast premise and getting started and kind of the evolution You know, even just once you’re started, maybe year one.
Adam Bird: Great, great question. So I’ll take you back to 2012 is when it started. I had my friend who was a business partner for that venture at the time. We just had good chemistry. It was good chemistry and, um. We talked mostly veteran issues and military issues. That was kind of our, our niche target at that time.
It was something easy because we were both vets. We served together and, uh, that was kind of our primary focus. And I learned a lot from just doing that side of it. And then in 2015, when I, when I did the switched over and rebranded and, and became heroes media group and opening it up to the different perspectives of [00:12:00] things, I more and more people, I had sports shows.
We had. Shows that were women’s issues, veteran issues, I mean, you name it. We, we had it. The only thing we didn’t, we wouldn’t allow were like, um, you know, porn or any type of adult, that type of content, uh, was the only thing that we didn’t work with. And, uh, it just, it, again, it, it grew from there. And what I had learned was, okay, here’s the idea of, I wanted to create a large company where people could come, it’d be affordable.
And just do something different. That was that was spread positivity. I mean,
Adam Baruh: Yeah.
Adam Bird: part of it was the production side of it. The other part of it was like, let’s share some news that are more positive. I’m the type of person that You know, mainstream media, you know, today is, is full of negativity and propaganda, and I won’t get on that soapbox, but you think of it how you want. a lot of positive stories that are happening in the world today, and we’re not hearing about it. And I, [00:13:00] I had a business person, I was, I was talking to, he was a… A potential investor. And he said, positivity isn’t sexy. It doesn’t sell. And I, I graciously and kindly said, I appreciate your time. This isn’t going to work.
And he was willing to give me money to invest in the company, to grow it. And I walked away from it because I didn’t want, I didn’t want his influence, negative influence to affect what we were trying to ultimately grow. And, and it was one of those, it, it wasn’t, it wasn’t matched. So then it was kind of like.
Oh, so you’re saying positivity doesn’t sell. I’m going to change people’s minds. I’m crazy enough to think that, you know, I know we didn’t get to where we’re at in the world today, overnight. It’s going to take time. So we’re going to start feeding people just little tidbits of positivity. And then eventually 10, years down the road, long after I’m gone, this is still going to be around and it’s going to be sharing positive stories.
Adam Baruh: Yeah, [00:14:00] and I definitely want to stay here with this because I love that you’re bringing this up. Positivity doesn’t sell, right? And you know, I’ll play devil’s advocate. Like if your whole goal is like click bait and to generate, you know, clicks and you know, saying things that are salacious, like go Joe Rogan style and just say things for, you know, Even if you don’t believe at them, just believe in them just to get, you know, clicks and people sharing those like, yeah, right.
I mean, like positivity doesn’t sell if that’s your angle and that’s what you’re after. But, you know, I think a lot of people that are getting into podcasting because of passion and purpose and they want to make an impact. And, you know, so. That’s going to sell like, like for somebody to say, there’s not an audience of people that love the positivity angle and love to spread that message.
I mean, that’s outrageous. So I wanted to ask you, um, [00:15:00] where does that positivity and that drive to share that with others? Where does that come from in you?
Adam Bird: Oh, wow. Great question. I would, I would say, I think it’s just having had enough of what’s going on in the world and pick, pick a topic that it doesn’t matter. It’s, you know, people want to feel like the woe is me and this, this doesn’t affect me. And they’re, wow. What, what difference does it make? I can’t change that.
Well, you can, and it starts with your own personal mindset. And when people start realizing that your mind is a powerful thing, I listen, I tell people I’m not the sharpest tool. I joke around. I’m not the sharpest tool in the shed. I’ll be the first to admit it. I’m not the dullest one either though. You know what I mean?
I was, I was, uh, you know, in high school, it was a, you know, a D will get you your degree type attitude where it was just kind of like, it’s like, that’s a, it’s horrible, it’s absolutely a horrible [00:16:00] mindset to have, but it, it got me. Through and and I learned a lot of life lessons from it And it’s it’s one of those things where you can have anything you want in life or and people are like, oh, that’s that’s not realistic Okay, if that’s your mindset, then that’s what you’re going to get.
You know, you you see the you’ve seen the the Napoleon Hill books and and all that other you know Stuff that’s, that’s out there. There’s some truth behind that. Like if the, the, you know, people want to say, you know, follow the science. Okay, well let’s look at the science. Our body is producing, you know, radio waves that are sent out or were like an antenna.
And if you’re putting out positive things in the universe, then what’s that going to attract? And it may seem foolish, and it, but it’s easy to, to, I don’t want to say convince people. I, I like to tell people, think for yourself. The stuff that I, that I do, I do another show every Friday morning. [00:17:00] Uh, it’s the weekly wrap up and I talk about current events and I’ll take events that aren’t very positive. But I also tell people, don’t believe everything that I’m telling you. Here’s some information that I read. Go look it up. There’s a lost art in the world today called critical thinking. We’ve become such a lazy society that like, Oh, I saw it on Oprah. So it must be true. Or I saw it on this program or whatever the case may be.
Yeah, that’s. But it’s probably not, you know, so let’s, let’s look into it and I think again to make a long answer longer is just I wanted people to start thinking for themselves and realizing that everything that you read and see. is, is not necessarily true. Let’s get back into your core beliefs and, and be the person that you’re meant to be.
And you have to start with your mindset. You know, if you want something, good. Believe that you can have it, and then work towards it. Don’t just believe it and then sit there and, [00:18:00] okay, well nothing’s happening. Well, get off your butt and, and do something about it, you know?
Adam Baruh: I fundamentally agree with that. I think it was episode two, um, here on beyond the microphone with, uh, I think the guest, um, episode two was crystal Renee, if I’m not mistaken. And we talked about the power of manifestation. And I mean, it’s it is absolutely a thing. Um, even if you just look at it from the perspective of when you spread positivity, who are you going to attract?
People that love that message and that’s what they believe in as well. So, I mean, there’s the power, the magnetic power of manifestation and mindset right there. And, you know, you talked about frequency and just kind of, I believe in that and I’m totally going to botch the name right now. I think it’s Abraham Hicks actually is a public speaker.
That’s her name and she kind of talks about this idea of frequency where You know, you, when, when you are putting yourself in a [00:19:00] positive mindset and you’re kind of emanating, well, even if you’re not like whatever you’re emanating, you’re generating a frequency of vibration, right? And when that vibration is tapped into like some sort of like, and here’s probably gonna get a little woo, but I believe in this because I’ve actually experienced it.
But when you’re putting yourself on a vibration that your higher self is aligned with. And that your higher self wants for you,
Adam Bird: Yeah.
Adam Baruh: that is when you are going to tap into the magic of manifestation and things will happen and you’ll be like, that’s crazy. Oh my God. Like, that’s the most random thing that ever happened.
But I, I, I could look at the series of events that led that to happen. And I think it’s because I, I put myself on this, This kind of wavelength of thinking. And so anyway, I firm believer in that. And you’re, you know, there’s a lot of speakers that, that talk on that subject and, you know, I’m way into that.
Adam Bird: Adam, if I can add [00:20:00] one more thing real quick. We only get one life here, right? How do you, how do you want to live it?
Adam Baruh: yeah,
Adam Bird: Do you want to, do you want to, do you want to wake up every morning and just be, you, you have a choice. When you wake up every morning, you have two options. You can be pissed off at the world or you could choose to be positive and be productive.
Now that’s not to say that we live in a perfect world. Stuff’s going to happen and you may not be able to control that. But what you can control is your reaction to those things that do happen. You have a choice, right? And for you. You know believers out there. I believe in God. So for me, this is what it works may not work for everybody For on a personal level it works for me God gave us free will right?
So I i’m going to choose to be positive regardless of what happens I’m going to find the positive To it because I know that’ll take me to the next step to where I want to go It’s that simple.
Adam Baruh: that’s, those are magical words. And I, I love that you’re a believer in that. Um, so that’s fantastic. So. Let’s do this. Let’s kind of switch gears a little bit. Let’s get back [00:21:00] into a little bit about the ins and outs of podcasting, um, that I think, you know, for people listening that are just trying to put it all together and get their shows off, off the ground, like some, some, uh, tidbits that could be useful there.
So, you know, going from like concept to reality, like. How do you coach your clients when it comes to putting a podcast premise together? When it comes to like figuring out what equipment they might need, you know, platforms to record on, software to edit on, that sort of thing. Like what, how do you coach your clients through that?
Adam Bird: So first off, I tell people you have an idea for a show. Everybody does. Great. I want you to write down 10 topics that you’re going to talk about and leave, leave a room between each topic for subcategories. When you have that, then we go to the next step. And usually I’ll either one or two things will happen.
I’ll hear from some, it’d take them about a week and then I’ll get a second email for a follow [00:22:00] up call, or I don’t hear from them again. You know, which, which tells me, okay, you’re not serious about it. That’s that’s fine. Great. Perfect. Um, once they hit that next step, okay. How do you talk about, um, you know, I don’t, Adam, I don’t have a budget for this.
So, you know, what am I, what am I going to do? I only have. You know, 200. Great. You have a cell phone. You got some earbuds. Maybe you start off with that. Not the best audio, but you know, it’s, it’s cost effective and it’s something that, that works. Zoom, Skype, there’s, there’s, you know, Riverside, the one that we’re on right now, you know, there’s, there’s cost effective ways to record it, you know, and it really depends on what’s your goal.
Are you wanting audio and video? Well, I just want audio. Okay. Well, that was my mindset, but I realized the importance of video moving forward nowadays. So Here’s, here’s, I’ll use Zoom as an example. Not the best platform, I don’t like their audio on it, but it allows them to go interaction with this and you can get it fairly cheap.
Um, or find another platform that you’re, that you’re comfortable with. [00:23:00] Um, as far, what was the other one? It was uh, editing, like post production type stuff. I’m a I’m a big proponent of the Adobe products. That’s not how I started, but here’s something that’s free. Uh, you, you, I started off way back in the day with, um, audacity.
Uh, that was a great program was free. I used that for the longest time. And then I’m a, I’m a Mac guy. Don’t judge me people, but I’m a, I’m a Mac guy. So I, uh, I use garage band once I learned how to use garage band because it came with the program. And then eventually I graduated into the Adobe products and, and I, you know, I use those because they, they work for, for me, so I, I tend to kind of push that direction and that’s, I’m not getting paid by Adobe or anything like that to say that, so, um.
That’s those are kind of the things that I tell people if you’re starting off and it really depends on you know Your different levels. Hey, I’ve been doing it for a while. I want to update it, you know this microphone This was you know, this wasn’t a cheap one, you know, [00:24:00] but it took me 10 years to get this microphone You know, this is the RE one.
This is the 500 mic I wouldn’t tell somebody that’s starting off to go buy this microphone like let’s Get a couple of episodes under your belt and let’s see how you want to progress and then go from there. You know, you can, you can have a nice setup for under 500 that gets you started. And if you’re serious about it, then you start saving that money.
And if you’re getting more and more serious, then you slowly build onto that. Um, I, I wouldn’t sleep good at night. If I told somebody you’re going to need 1, 600, go get a, a board, go get the best microphones that you can get and, you know, have at it. It does, doesn’t work that way. You know, I, I’m the guy that you’re gonna call back because I’m at least honest with you, I saved you a bunch of money to get started and you’re gonna realize, hey, I’m, I’m seven episodes in, this isn’t my thing.
Or I’m seven episodes in, I can grow this. Let’s do this. Okay, now we’re going to the next step.
Adam Baruh: Yeah, that’s a completely sound [00:25:00] approach and I love that. Yeah, you’re… And everybody, you know, kind of gets into it with a lot of excitement, but, you know, as you said, like record several episodes, like, you know, go through the motion of, of, you know, what it feels like and, and if this is the right thing for you, it may not be the right thing for you and that’s not a terrible thing and you took a stab at it.
So like, you know, um, but when, once you kind of feel like you get into a group with it and you feel, you know, pretty confident and you know. There’s going to be ebbs and flows with that confidence, like it takes a fair amount of emotional courage to kind of, you know, put yourself in a situation to have, you know, some vulnerable conversations from time to time.
Adam Bird: And especially if you’re interviewing somebody else too, if you’ve never really done that before or whatnot, that, you know, the big, biggest thing I tell people is, You know, I love this even today, like people get nervous, like I’ve never done an interview before. Great. Have you ever sat down, had coffee or had a beer or sat at a bar with somebody and just start talking with [00:26:00] them?
We’re like, well, yeah, great. That’s what we’re doing.
Adam Baruh: Yeah, don’t
Adam Bird: have, we’re just recording, like, have fun with this. Like, this is. Be natural. Don’t be like, Oh, relax, have fun. That’s what this, this is a fun thing to do. And I think as, as hosts ourselves, it’s a privilege for us to do stuff like this. I think we’re the luckiest people around because we get to do this for a living.
Adam Baruh: Yeah, I couldn’t agree more
Adam Bird: pretty cool. You know,
Adam Baruh: Totally. All right. So finally, as we wrap here, um, and I ask everybody this, this same question. So I’m going to leave it here with you. Um, You know, what discoveries have you made about yourself through the podcasting experience?
Adam Bird: great question. Uh, discoveries that I’ve made about myself. Early on, I had suffered from imposter syndrome. It was like, why would anybody want to listen to me? And, uh, that was a, that took me, and [00:27:00] I’d be lying to you if I said I’ve overcome that, even, even today, and mind you, I’ve been doing this, I’ve been in the business for over a decade.
Uh, it still happens every now and then, but I, I think one of the things is that, um, biggest thing I’ve learned is that I can sit down, I can interview anybody, and I’ve, I’ve had the privilege of interviewing movie stars to, you know, just random people off the street, and it’s fun every single time. I’ve, I’ve never thought…
In a million years, had you asked me a decade ago if I ever saw myself doing this for a living, I would have laughed at you. Um, so I’ve learned that this is something that I’m good at, and I’ve, it’s, it’s given me purpose in like what I call my second chapter of life. You know, I just turned 45 recently, my son’s in college now, so now that he’s kind of off doing his own thing, I have to grow up, and I, I realize that this, this chapter of my life, I never would have thought this would have been cool or something I would have done or even [00:28:00] considered and one of the best decisions I’ve ever made.
Adam Baruh: Beautifully spoken. Thank you so much for being here today. It’s been a pleasure to get to know you a little bit and to have you here today. So thanks for coming on.
Adam Bird: Adam, thank you very much. I appreciate it.
Adam Baruh: You got it. Adam Bird is a highly accomplished and seasoned entrepreneur renowned for his exceptional leadership skills and extensive expertise in various industries as the founder of Heroes Media Group.
HMG Beverage and co founder of JB Audio Clothiers, he has made a significant impact on the entrepreneurial landscape, successfully building and managing multiple ventures with exceptional finesse. His visionary leadership has been instrumental in the success of Heroes Media Group, a leading platform that amplifies the voices of inspiring individuals, including veterans, first responders and community leaders.
This platform serves as a powerful catalyst for positive change and provides a voice to those who deserve recognition and appreciation.
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