Hot Seat Series on Next Up Nation Evaluates The Accidental Entrepreneur podcast
How did you start your business?
Bright idea? Random chance? Family business? Broke away from a boss who held you back?
Every entrepreneur knows someone who ventured into the world of starting up their own company after a lay-off or run of bad luck in the mainstream working world. And if you don’t know someone like that, then the chances are you’re just such an entrepreneur.
You’re what Mitchell Beinhaker calls The Accidental Entrepreneur.
An idea so striking, that he named his entrepreneur podcast after it. So much is said of having an entrepreneurial mindset – yet so many of the greatest business ideas often arise through twists of fate or idle happenstance.
In fact, as Tiffany Youngren explored in a recent conversation with Mitchell Beinhaker, oftentimes even the most confident business leaders simply don’t know the value of the stories they have to tell.
For any entrepreneur podcast, it seems the narratives beneath the surface are vital to creating humanizing, engaging, and empowering growth stories that inspire your audience.
How The Accidental Entrepreneur podcast got started
Mitchell Beinhaker is a qualified corporate lawyer. As such, his career has led him to experience the highs and lows, pitfalls, and potential of countless businesses across a huge number of industry verticals.
Mitchell runs his business solo and professes that – like “most lawyers” (his words) – he wasn’t always as adept at digital marketing as he wanted to be.
Like anyone with an entrepreneurial mindset, he was an avid podcast listener. And when he learned that setting up an entrepreneur podcast could be done for under $100, he and his business partner at the time invested in some audio gear.
Every podcaster experiences a touch of the creative block from time to time. Yet Mitchell had the courage to admit on air to Tiffany that The Accidental Entrepreneur team hit a creative wall almost immediately!
In the excitement to set up their entrepreneur podcast, they hadn’t considered what they intended to say.
As if fulfilling the philosophy of The Accidental Entrepreneur podcast in its own right, serendipity soon provided the answer. While Mitchell Beinhaker was mulling over ideas to get his podcast going, it was his friend and business veteran Jack who provided the inspiration, not only for the first two episodes of The Accidental Entrepreneur podcast back in February 2021 but also for the shape and vision of the show overall.
Mitchell Beinhaker knew from then that his show would be a platform for interviewing people while exploring stories, motivations, and the personal challenges that so often galvanize the strongest kinds of an entrepreneurial mindset.
Helping Accidental Entrepreneurs stay better prepared
Being in business is exciting and oftentimes scary. That’s simply the way it is. From his legal experience. Mitchell Beinhaker recognized that entrepreneurs often move ahead a mile a minute, barely planning, encountering challenges late in the day, and running afoul of obstacles they weren’t even aware existed.
What would you do if you heard some inspiring stories of how to navigate the promises and pitfalls of business ownership?
The Accidental Entrepreneur doesn’t just explore a given opportunity or challenge from the world of business.
It brings in someone who’s lived that journey.
Through dialog, Mitchell and his guests explore what went right, what went wrong, any legal aspects that a smart entrepreneur ought to watch out for, as well as down-to-earth conversations about what motivates organizations today.
One key piece of advice that Mitchell Beinhaker often emphasizes is to get everything in writing – proposals, analysis, agreements, contracts, business plans, the works. It’s a grassroots detail often left by the wayside, especially in startups founded by friends.
How The Accidental Entrepreneur podcast sustains growth
At the time of our conversation with Mitchell Beinhaker, The Accidental Entrepreneur podcast was enjoying an average of 500 downloads per month. Depending on whether you prefer streaming or downloading figures, measuring the true metrics of podcast audience engagement is often hard. Yet it’s clear that this podcast resonates well with people with an entrepreneur mindset.
To ensure engagement and discovery remain on a constant uptick, Mitchell leans into growth strategies that are befittingly journalistic, personable, and – dare we say it – kind of old school in how down-to-earth they are.
Networking. Whenever Mitchell Beinhaker has the opportunity to attend a corporate event – be that online or in person – he uses the opportunity to reach out to old colleagues and new allies to not only promote The Accidental Entrepreneur podcast but also discover new potential interview candidates.
The power of personality in podcasting
Networking can prove to be an excellent way to promote your podcast at a grassroots level. With the podcast market as active (some might say saturated) as it has been since the 2020s began, helping listeners put a face to the name they hear over the airwaves is a powerful thing. (That’s also why many podcasters put their stuff on YouTube at some point. Omnichannel thinking.)
Mitchell Beinhaker remains a keen advocate of the power of relationships in business. While his entrepreneur podcast has a good mix of startup visionaries just setting out and established business leaders sharing long and winding journeys, his legal career largely deals with the latter demographic.
Does that mean Mitchell turns away fresh-faced greenhorns first getting their feet wet in the latest Blue Ocean strategy? Not at all!
Even if his services aren’t quite for you yet, he’ll do the work behind the scenes to connect you with someone ready and willing to help.
Sustaining the vision of an entrepreneur podcast
Anyone who moves into podcasting, whether recreationally or professionally, as a marketing move or an engaging hobby, understands what it’s like to feel a show go a touch off the rails.
It could be an overly loquacious guest, a tech hiccup on your end, a passionate topic you and your team are discussing for what seems like a few upbeat minutes until you look up in shock at the clock – whatever the cause, it stands to reason that a show with the name The Accidental Entrepreneur more than understands this risk.
The key to taming this overexcited aspect of one’s entrepreneur mindset is the same as it is keeping a broader business plan ticking over. In other words, it’s all about the vision.
Drilling down into his vision for The Accidental Entrepreneur podcast in greater depth, Mitchell Beinhaker explained that even when one’s motivation for a podcast comes from a place of passion – meeting people with an entrepreneur mindset, understanding their journeys, advising on their pain points and opportunities – it can be difficult to get your head out of the need to constantly talk shop.
In a conversation with Tiffany, Mitchell explained his marketing model and monetization strategy. Yet he later explored what was truly standing in the way of realizing the vision of using The Accidental Entrepreneur podcast to help people.
His intention is to always avoid stagnation.
According to Mitchell, a key component of that vision’s commitment is to ensure a diverse range of guests is welcomed onto the show.
“It’s like a university of experience from all these people,” he informed us, “some of whom have failed their way to success, some of whom came out of business school, some who have technical degrees, some who have no degrees – and they all have different stories and ideas to share.”
By leaning into the idea of The Accidental Entrepreneur, Mitchell has tapped into a powerful audience by resonating with people who have found success almost by accident and who now need a guiding hand to make it stick.
This has given Mitchell an awesome opportunity to become the hero of his own show, however humbly he comes across despite that. Entrepreneurship often feels like flying along by the seat of our pants. And what Mitchell does is provide actionable advice while exploring the stories of his guests.
Making a podcast based solely on interviewing isn’t easy, yet this formula of acting in a guidance role as the show host has a lot of great potentials.
And Mitchell is already seeing brilliant results.
What are the areas of opportunity for this podcast?
Being able to be selective is always a key hallmark of success. To that end, Mitchell Beinhaker is lucky in that his podcast has grown enough that he can decide how well certain guests will match up with the feel, vision, and rhythm of his show.
Naturally, he is oftentimes approached by hopefuls looking to be guests on The Accidental Entrepreneur podcast. Similarly, the networking events Mitchell attends, as we discussed earlier, offer a broad range of guest candidates to choose from.
Yet as any seasoned interviewer will tell you, whether in podcasting, journalism, or PR, a bad interview seldom makes for compelling or even salvageable content. Whether it’s a drab guest, a confrontational conversation that seems to rise up out of nowhere, or controversial opinions making it to air that we could all really do without, Mitchell has learned a few techniques to ensure his guests match his energy when the mic goes live.
One key technique he employs is a fifteen-minute preamble conversation that’s casual and downtempo. It puts nervous guests at ease, helps him better understand how good a fit they will be for the episode to come, and helps him understand their motivations as well as what value their story can offer to his audience.
Mitchell ensures he’s transparent during this evaluation phase, and politely recommends other podcasters if he or his guests recognize through this process that there’s a bad fit for The Accidental Entrepreneur podcast overall.
However, this background work also means that Mitchell is able to get to the real ‘meat’ of his podcast far more quickly as he’s gotten into his stride. Listeners need to feel not only that this is an interesting interview, but that a challenge has been presented that Mitchell will help his guest to overcome.
Cementing this image as a voice of guidance will really tie the whole production together, benefiting Mitchell’s brand as much as offering true value to guests and listeners.
The Best Action Step for a Bigger Audience and More Credibility in the Next 30 Days
The groundwork for The Accidental Entrepreneur has been expertly laid, but there’s hope for optimization.
Think of the first line of a business podcast like your search meta description, your tagline, and your tweet. Sum up your show in one snappy line – it sets audience expectations and creates a throughline for engagement. It’s like each show has a catchphrase to lean on.
That throughline also ensures you’re fulfilling the audience promise. In Mitchell’s case, that’s finding interesting entrepreneurs, identifying their narratives, and solving the hurdles their success has led them to.
What’s your audience promise – and are you driving it home in the first 30 seconds of your podcast?
About the Hot Seat Series
Podcasting is both a popular pastime and an excellent way to build an audience around your business or brand. However, it takes a lot of time, effort, and consistency to both build an audience and create content that resonates with them.
The Hot Seat Series was created to help podcasters improve their shows and reach new listeners.
Tiffany Youngren is a podcast producer, coach, and strategist. She helps entrepreneurs, business owners, and content creators level up their podcasting presence. In each episode,
Tiffany interviews an up-and-coming podcaster, sharing insights, tips, and strategies to help them take their podcast to the next level.
Whether you’re just starting out with your podcast or looking for ways to improve, the Hot Seat Series offers valuable advice and actionable strategies that will help you succeed.
Why OMH Agency Features Articles from Next Up Nation
OHM Agency’s goal is to help 100 ambitious podcasters improve their craft over the next 100 days. They share this content on our website so you can have easy access to the best tips and tools so you can grow your show larger in less time.