[Podcast] Pushing Send – Episode 10 with Grant Baldwin


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Grant Baldwin

In this episode of Pushing Send, we welcome Grant Baldwin, a public speaker, author, entrepreneur, and the host of The Speaker Lab podcast — a platform where he helps other speakers to start, build, and grow their business. Grant is truly an example of how a professional speaker built his business and went on to teach thousands of others how to launch their own speaking careers the same way.

His approach to email marketing is deeply rooted in making sure you understand the prospective subscriber’s want or need. His focus is on creating a range of absolutely compelling lead magnets to deliver immediate value, which will hopefully have your brains firing and thinking by the end of this episode. During our conversation, we talk about email newsletter structure, how to make your emails intriguing to both your audience and the decision-makers, we discuss different email marketing tools, lead magnets, and so much more.


Grant Baldwin is a nationally known speaker, podcaster, and author who has helped thousands of people start and build their own speaking businesses. A podcaster since 2014, he has published over 300 podcast episodes that have been downloaded over 1.5 million times.


Key Points From This Episode:

  • What their email marketing structure looks like at.
  • What life would be like if Grant didn’t have access to email marketing: The upside of emailing.
  • Grant shares what’s in it for both his business as well as those who subscribe to his emails.
  • How email plays a role in growing your business: Practical tips from Grant.
  • The importance of researching the “Who” you’ll be talking to with your emails.
  • The process of creating an irresistible offer and gaining a truly engaged audience.
  • Creating content that applies both to your audience and your decision-makers.
  • He talks about the “Speaker Fee Calculator.”
  • How to create a lead magnet and the role they play in your email marketing.
  • Grant shares successes in his business directly related to email responses.


“Email helps you be in control of your communication!” — @grantbaldwin

“One of the things we usually talk about is keeping your emails short and sweet. Do more than a copy/paste spray and pray approach instead really try to tweak and customize to the appropriate context.” — @grantbaldwin

“The audience and the decision-maker can often be two different groups…You want to make sure you’re sending the right message to the right people as your recipients won’t necessarily all be equal.” — @grantbaldwin

“A lead magnet is basically something that incentivizes or gives people a reason to opt-in and then from there you can start your email newsletter sequence.” — @grantbaldwin

Links Mentioned in Today’s Episode:

Grant Baldwin: Website, LinkedIn, Twitter, Email

Bryan Kelly: LinkedIn

Episode Transcript

Yeah, email still works. We are, we’re all busy. There’s a lot more inboxes, whether that’s, you know, Facebook messenger or voicemail or text messages or whatever it may be. But email is still from a lot of people is still a very, somewhat of a sacred inbox. And so we protect in that regard and that we, you know, we pay attention to, so it’s still a great way to get in front of people and it gives them an opportunity for them to kind of, you know, I got an email from a speaker, so now I’m going to come up, you know, anonymously browse around and do little stalking and figure out if this is someone that I’m interested in. And I want to start a conversation with, for potentially coming to our event or whatever it may be. And so email is just a really good, simple, easy non-intrusive way to start conversations with, with event planners,

From rasa.io, The free tool for sending smarter and better email newsletters. This is Pushing Send a show featuring people who send emails their subscribers actually want to read. I’m Bryan Kelly, and on today’s show how a professional speaker used email to build his business and went on to teach thousands of others, how to launch their own speaking careers, the same way. Here’s Grant Baldwin, breaking down all the ways he leveraged his email. It wasn’t explicitly clear on your website. So do you have an email newsletter?

An email list that we are sending content to on a regular basis and content of writing different forms. So one of the things that we do is we do a primary content pieces, a podcast that we do on a weekly basis. We’ve been doing it for several years. And so we send a weekly update to the list about that podcast, about that episode, any other, just, you know, calls to action that we have. So, you know, at the time of this recording, we’ve just launched a book. So I had a bunch of emails going out about that, or, you know, webinars or trainings that we may have going on or different offers or various things that we want to promote or announced or whatever it may be. But yeah, email is a, is critically important to our business, for sure.

So it sounds like there’s actually a ton you’re doing behind the scenes with email, but what would life be like if you didn’t have it?

I may not be in business. Um, and, uh, at least wouldn’t be at the level that we are. So email helps us to be in control of the communication versus we, you know, so for example, right now we do a lot of Facebook ads and it’s, uh, it’s a big lead gen source for us, but if Facebook ads stop working or Facebook changes the terms or whatever, you know, like we don’t make the rules with, with Facebook, we don’t own anything. We can’t control anything there, you know, so whenever you are building a big following on, you know, whatever social media platform, uh, there’s certainly limitations and downsides to it and that you don’t own anything that you’re playing by their rules and you are renting space on their property. And so, so if something like email, you know, it’s something that we own and we can, you know, we can email as much or as little as we want. Now it’s obviously up to us to, to nurture the list, and take care of the list. But, um, you know, something that we are in control of versus being a, a tenant on someone else’s property.

I know you’re creating a lot of different content, but can you first tell me what’s in it for the people who become subscribers? Like what do they actually get by signing up on your list? And then secondly, what’s in it for you when they sign up?

The core of what we do. And what we teach is a, is in the speaking business. So I was a full time speaker for, for about eight, nine years or so, and have been in the speaking industry for about 13, 14 years. And the core of what we teach now is teaching people how to find a book speaking gigs. And so that is one of those things, it’s not just a, you work on it Monday and on Tuesday, it’s all done. You’re, you’re, you’re there, it’s an ever evolving process. It’s a it’s know like anything else. You’re just, it takes time to build and grow. And so we are regularly putting out free content and free training and free resources to help people in that process and help people in that journey of, um, being able to find a book gigs and to share their message with the world. And so, so we absolutely have a lot of people who are at various stages of their speaking business that follow along and track, you know, our emails with, with what we offer and what we’re doing and are able to see, you know, benefits and results from it. Now, from our standpoint, I think there’s two big things that we’re trying to do. One is that it’s, it’s certainly a way for us to communicate, you know, products or services or offers that ultimately help the business grow. And it’s our economic engine is to provide those, those products and services. So that’s certainly a core piece, but there’s also a lot of people who may not necessarily be in a place ready to buy or purchase something, whether that’s a book or a higher valued coaching or training program, but they’re still just kind of, you know, I’m loosely interested in speaking, I’m kinda kicking the tires of it. So I think for us, one of things that does is it helps us to stay top of mind. And whenever someone is ready to get off the fence and make a decision that hopefully we are who they thought of, and hopefully email has, has helped us to, to stay top of mind for them.

Let’s look at this from the perspective of the audience you serve with your focus on helping speakers grow their business, how does email come into play for them? I’d love to hear some of the specific things you’ve learned or teach around crafting an email that’s going to get opened and read.

Yeah. So a couple of things that we do is one day to keep it really, really short. You know, I think the mistake that a lot of speakers make is they, you know, they send some 98 paragraph email and they feel like that’s, you know, this is my one shot. So I’ve got to take my shot and tell them my life story. And here’s why I’m an amazing speaker. And here’s all the, you know, the 15 different things I speak on and here’s, you know, every link of everything I’ve ever created or done. And I just feel like we’ve got to get it all in. And like, if you’re on the other end of that, and if you got some 98 paragraph unsolicited email from someone you didn’t know, like you wouldn’t read that you would delete that. So one thing that we, we always talk about, just keep your emails short and sweet. I usually say some, you know, a line or two. And, uh, some of the things that we really recommend is that we, we really want people to, especially on your reaching out to potential events, is to do more than just kind of a copy paste, spray, and pray approach, but to really try to tweak and customize to the person, to the event, you know, the context, because the reality is, is like we, every single one of us, we all get hundreds, if not thousands of emails a day or week or month on a, on a regular basis. And we can tell the difference between an email that was written specifically to us versus an email that was written to us, plus hundreds, if not thousands of other people. So you don’t want to have that type of approach of just kind of like, alright, I’m just going to write one email and copy and paste and send it to a bunch of people and hope that that works. You want to take the time to do a little bit of research on who’s on the other end. Who’s who are you? Who are you going to be talking with? And is there any type of connection? So that’s what I always want to try to do is, is keep it short, keep it concise, make it personalized and ask a question that hopefully starts a conversation.

When we come back, how Grant made a conscious decision not to overtly promote his email newsletter and what he decided to do instead, plus Grant explains the process involved in creating an irresistible offer that gets people signing up to your email list, like crazy. So stick around. I’m Bryan Kelly, and you’re listening to Pushing Send from rasa.io.

Creating email newsletters takes a lot of time. You might curate articles, write content, tweak your template, and look up metrics and not to mention you’re probably doing all of this once a week. well at rasa.io, we said enough and built a free tool to simplify the process, which saves you time. It also uses AI to personalize emails for each subscriber based on their interests. That means they get stuff they like to read. Want to see how it works? Visit www.rasa.io and click how it works.

Welcome back to Pushing Send I’m Bryan Kelly. Grant Baldwin teaches speakers how to build their business. And one of the key strategies he recommends is using email. He not only instruct students in utilizing cold email outreach, but in also taking advantage of a newsletter to nurture those prospects that might hire them at some point in the future here’s grant breaking down an example of what this looks like.

So one of the things that’s important, especially in the speaking space is sometimes, and oftentimes the audience is different than the actual decision maker. Uh, so let me give an example. When, when I got speaking started speaking, I got my start largely speaking in high schools on high school conferences and high school events. And so the audience was largely 15, 16, 17, 18 year old teenagers, but the decision maker was usually like a 40 something administrator, principal, vice principal, assistant principal, counselor, that sort of thing. And so the audience and the decision maker are two different groups. Or if I would go speak at a conference, there may be maybe 90, 95% of students. Um, but maybe five or 10% teachers, educators, administrators from other other schools or other educational organizations. And so one of the things that I tried to think through was how to generate opt-ins for both, because a, a student isn’t ultimately the one that’s going to be hiring me, but they may be interested in, you know, some type of a project or something I was working on. Whereas a, you know, 40 something educators is going to be thinking about something totally different that they, that, you know, I might be able to help them with, or that they may be, need a totally different type of resource. So you definitely want to be aware of who, like, if you’re going to be emailing people, you know, not all recipients are gonna be created equal. So making sure that you’re, you know, you’re sending the right message to the right people

Earlier, I clarified if you had an email newsletter or not, because it isn’t something you overtly promote instead, you’ve got a number of truly compelling lead magnets, like the speaker fee calculator. Was that an intentional choice?

Yeah, very much so. Because most people that don’t want to be on another newsletter just for the sake of being on another newsletter. So, you know, mistake, I see some, you know, some speakers or companies make is opt in to be on our list or to get updates from us or to hear our latest news. It’s like, nobody wants to update your latest news. So a lead magnet is basically a, you know, something that incentivizes or gives people a reason to opt in. And then from there we will start some form of, of newsletter or sequence or content that we’re going to drip out. But that’s usually what that’s usually not what people want to sign up for. You know, that we’re not looking to fill our inbox with more stuff, just for the sake of filling out one more stuff. So I’ll go for a lot of times, people are looking for like some simple action thing. You know, like the speaker fee calculator is a, is a good example of that. That has been a really, really good lead magnet. We’ve had literally tens of thousands of people that have used that and generated a lot of leads and a lot of business for us. Versus if we just said, Hey, just sign up for our list. Just, just for the sake of signing up for a list like that. Most people just don’t get excited about it.

Yeah, no doubt. So, because there’s an actionable and immediate impact with the speaker fee calculator, I’m curious, what’s the response been from people that have signed up for it?

Yeah, no, it’s a, it’s a really, it’s a fun tool to just kind of mess around with, cause you can put in different variables and it spits out different numbers. What makes it a little bit complicated is figuring speaking fees as much of a, more of an art than a science. So it’s not always, you know, one plus one equals two, so there’s so many different variables that go into it. But for the most part, like we, we played with it a lot and a lot of the different variables on the back end, but for the most part, people who are just getting started, who just need some type of starting point, it’s been really, really helpful. And it’s a, it’s a good guide for them.

And have you seen an increase or a lot of email opt-ins as a result of that?

Yeah, absolutely. Because at the way we do it is she just go through, you answer the questions and at the end, just drop in your email and we’ll, we’ll send you what your numbers. Uh, so at that point you’re kind of invested, you know, like I want to know what my number is. I already answered all the questions. It, makes it a little simpler for someone to just go ahead and opt in versus, you know, Hey, opt in at the beginning and then we’ll send you this calculator. And actually once someone opts in for the calculator, we send them an email with their number of what it came up with. So they just want to mess around with it some more. They can do that without having to, you know, every time.

Can you share a little bit around the process of creating a lead magnet like this speaker fee calculator?

Yeah. So we really try to begin with the end in mind of like people that are having challenges as a speaker, people that are stumbling across our information, you know, what’s the thing that they are looking for help with, you know, or what are the things that we can create a, you know, a quick win a is a big thing. So, you know, for example, we do have a lead magnet. That’s like a nine part email series that is good, but it’s, you know, it’s nine parts and that’s going to be spread out over a couple of weeks versus, you know, the speaker fee calculator. And it tells you what you should be charging as a speaker. And so it is a good interactive tool, but it also gives you the answer you’re looking for right now. So it gives you some, some context of here’s how to think about speaking fees, but you know, here’s a shortcut, it takes you less than a minute. Calculators are kind of fun and interactive. So versus spreading something out over, you know, a whole bunch of emails or over a longer period of time. We also, we don’t do a massive amount of tweaking or testing with lead magnets. So it’s not like we’re just throwing a ton of stuff out there on a regular basis. We’ll usually, you know, if we find something we just kind of double down on that and roll with that. And then that stops working. We may try another thing or two, and as long as something’s working, we’ll, you know, we’ll keep using it. Um, until it gets to a point where it stopped working or it’s significantly less effective than it used to be.

I think it’s really savvy that you’ve led with something completely compelling to your audience. Now, what does it look like after they entered their email address? Tell me how you approached all of that.

We have a marketing team and a content team on the back end, they’re playing with different things. So whatever that initial lead magnet is, um, you’re probably going to get some type of deliverable of what the thing was. And then you may have any, you know, any followup things specific to whatever that lead magnet was. And then from there you may see a lot of what we do as far as offers goes points to either an automated or a live webinar. Or we also do a lot of group coaching program for speakers. And so we invite people to book calls for that. So we have one on one group call or one on one calls. So sometimes it’s going to be those invitations. Sometimes again, it’s going to be the, you know, here’s the latest piece of content or here’s the, uh, the new book or some form of, um, something that we think will help you as a, as a speaker

Building off of that. I wonder if there’s any successes that you can recall where you utilized email for a big speaking gig or a book launch or training something that totally blew you away because of the response you received from a particular email campaign.

I remember reading a book and it was kind of talking about the value of email marketing and they kind of equated it to like a faucet, something that they could, they could turn on or off, you know, one time there, they, um, you know, they were wanting to do an addition to the house or something, or some type of like big home improvement project or something that was gonna cost several thousand dollars. And I thought, well, what if, you know, what, if we put together an offer an email it to the list and turn the faucet on and, and, you know, sure enough, like an email or a couple of emails or something that, you know, it generated a enough for them to do this home improvement project. And so I just kinda thought about that faucet analogy that, again, it’s something that you can control that you can, you can turn on or off it. So there’s been certainly several times where we’ve done various promotions or launches or webinars or trainings or offers where, you know, we send an email and it generates revenue and we don’t send an email and nothing happens. And so it is kind of, it’s kind of weird at times that, you know, you feel like it is somewhat of a faucet. If we needed an increase of sales or wanted to generate some business that we have this faucet that we can go to and turn it on. And obviously you’ve got to control the flow of the quality of, of what’s going out to people, but I’ve always thought that was kind of an interesting way to think about it, that you, you know, your email, this is basically this faucet that can generate revenue for the business

Grant has taken an approach to email marketing. That’s deeply rooted in making sure you understand what prospective subscribers want or need. It’s not different from what other guests have shared throughout season one, but his focus on creating a range of absolutely compelling lead magnets to deliver immediate value. Hopefully has you thinking. Coming up on our next episode, we’ll hear from Sachit Gupta, who’s been a secret marketing weapon for multiple influential podcasters and authors. He’s a master at cold email outreach and openly shares some lessons he’s learned that can apply to sending any type of email. You won’t want to miss Sanchit’s story. So if you’re listening to Pushing Send for the first time, be sure to subscribe at Apple podcasts or wherever you’re listening, so you don’t miss an episode. And if you’ve enjoyed what you’ve heard, I’d encourage you to check out a few other episodes while you’re here. Lastly, leaving a review will help us share these stories with others like you. So thanks in advance for doing that. I’m Bryan Kelly, and you’ve been listening to Pushing Send from rasa.io.

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