Matt Johnson

Today’s guest is the one and only Matt Johnson. He’s the founder and CEO of the “Pursuing Results” that produces the excellent Done-for-you podcasting for business coaches, consultants, and thought leaders. He’s also an agency owner. Matt is also known for being the podcast host of MicroFamous. He also authored a book with the same title. His goal as an entrepreneur is to help coaches and consultants reach the right people, build an audience and create a real influence that converts into sales and ROI. Find out and learn how Matt makes it possible through our latest episode.

Among the highlights of the shows are the following:

– What sets Matt Johnsons apart, and what makes him the most driven person?

– In a family and town of blue-collared people, why hasn’t he taken the same route in his life?

– What is his outlook on the world of entrepreneurship changing its pace so rapidly?

– Who and what are the people he considers his cheerleaders

– How did he build his Done-for-You podcasting business?

– What pushed him to author his book MicroFamous?

– What is he up to for the next coming 6-12 months?

– The last piece of advice for his younger self

– Listen and uncover how you too can be the next Underdog.

To know more of what is coming next with Matt Johnson, check out the following:

– Pursuing Results (Done-for-You Podcast)- pursuingresults.com

– YouTube – youtube.com/channel/UC0H2WkhUrZeUXxa2FxG8IyQ

– LinkedIn – https://www.linkedin.com/in/microfamous/

To listen to the full episode:

– Apple iTunes: https://podcasts.apple.com/us/podcast/underdog/id1534385651

– Spotify: https://open.spotify.com/show/6FbSDu0aNtuxAEiderUAfB

– Website: https://theunderdogshow.com/

If you love the episode, don’t forget to follow and subscribe. Leave also an awesome review.

Click To Read The Transcript

Matt Johnson, Best-Selling Author of “Microfamous” Shares His Journey with his Secret Sauce to Success and Diversifying Revenue Streams

Pamela Bardhi
Yes, hello, everyone, and welcome to another episode of underdog today. I have an amazing guest here with me, Matt, how are you, my friend?

Matt Johnson
It’s very good. I’m very blessed.

Pamela Bardhi
Amen. My friend. I’m so inspired by you and all the awesomeness that you’re doing in your world, and you’re so dynamic in your realm. I’m just like, burning to know your story. Honestly, I’m like, Matt, get there start you off with the most loaded question. Oh, god. What inspired you on your journey to where you are today, my friend.

Matt Johnson
You know, I’m just I’m one of those people that has an internal motor that I can’t turn off. I’m very lifestyle focus. So life is tempered by the fact that I also want to go take a nap after this. But you know, like, in for about four hours a day, I’m the most driven person you’ll ever meet. You know, I was that guy that I picked up the drums when I was two years old. I picked up the piano somewhere along the way.

And so when I was in my teenage years, I was working full time. And I would make out these practice schedules to make sure that I maximize the number of off-hours. Squeeze in every second of potential practice. Split between those two instruments like that’s the kind of person I am so the drive just comes from. It’s a weird internal place. I actually can’t put my finger on exactly what motivates me other than I just can’t stop building and making progress.

Pamela Bardhi
That’s amazing. So question then what did you want to be when you grew up?

Matt Johnson
I wanted to be a pastor, a missionary, or something along those lines because I grew up as a pastor’s kid homeschool pastor’s kid. So business was not on my radar at all. I grew up on the wrong side of the tracks in a dumpy little city. My dad had a smallish church, 100 people or so. And so I expected to go down that path. Didn’t know anyone who went to college. Didn’t know anyone who ran a business car died and go to college. It was weird because there’s just not even in the realm of possibility all like it was a blue-collar town. All my family and friends were blue-collar people. So I didn’t have any expectation to get into this at all.

Pamela Bardhi
That’s crazy. So you were completely homeschooled as a kid until through high school. I’m assuming

Matt Johnson
High school up until the junior year of high school I parachuted into like a smallish private school. 40 kids, like my entire high school class, fit into one classroom. So that was the one like I didn’t have a traditional experience. That was the closest thing I had to it. And then I was out of there. I did one year, my junior year and then left and got a GED. So I was out of school.

Pamela Bardhi
Wow. Yeah. And then you mentioned that college just wasn’t even like a thing.

Matt Johnson
No, I wouldn’t work for an insurance company. It was the same company my mom was working for at the time when she jumped back into the workforce after homeschooling us. Yeah. So I went work for that insurance company and got into like corporate training and stuff like that. That was my college years was just working, I was making more money than any of my friends at that time, which is great. But yeah, I skipped out on college. So I hit that, that ceiling where you can’t go higher in the traditional corporate world without a degree. And I started running up against that. And that’s when I looked at, okay, real estate investing led me to Gary Keller’s book. The Millionaire Real Estate Agent. I said, Well, screw investing, I’m gonna go build a team.

So I started working on the team, and then oh, seven happened. And I said, Okay, that was fine for them. But I don’t love enough about real estate to like, stay like hang in through the crash. I realized afterward that I liked the marketing and the team-building part. Like that’s the part that drew me to the whole real estate team space. And that came around later. After the crash, I basically said, it was always in the back of my head that I would do something in music. But I don’t want to do it in the whole church realm.

You know, what am I going to do with it? So I started just practicing and ended up practicing like five hours a day, kind of re-touching my roots as a musician. And I’m like, you know, I’m going to do something with this. So I joined a band, and then another band and then another and then I ended up in four bands. I even for about five years, push it as far as I could. In that sense, I have no regrets. Like, I took the big swing

Pamela Bardhi
Four bands. Wow. Oh, my God, it was so funny that you mentioned realistic because you know that that’s my arena. And then what you said before about insurance from and just the corporate world realm of like, how does a piece of paper define your hustle? That is my question.

Matt Johnson
How does a piece of paper define my hustle?

Pamela Bardhi
I mean, like in the corporate world, that your degree you can have someone who’s an absolute hustler. Has a willingness to learn and these things that you can’t learn in school. But they can’t move up or help this company because they don’t have that piece of paper. It drives me insane.

Matt Johnson
It’s out absolutely insane because like within the agency, I’ll hire whoever. I don’t care whether they have a degree or not, I don’t care whether they’re in this country or not. Had an interesting experience in the very early days of my agency. And one of the very last things is I got off of my plate for my own podcast was writing the show notes. Because I’m a natural writer, I love writing. So it’s one of the last things that I hired. And I narrowed down the candidate because I advertised for it internationally. I came down to two candidates, one in South Africa, and one in the United States. She was a homeschool mother of four with a journalism degree from like the University of Missouri. One of the good journalism schools.

I’m like, Oh, this girl is gonna blow the other one out of the water, journalism degree, been writing for 20 years. Now the gal from South Africa kicked your butt. Because I gave him a real audition test. I’m like, Okay, well, I’m gonna hire the one that did better. She’s still my director of content to this day, four years later, she crushed it. I don’t know what degree she had. I think she does have a degree, but she didn’t have a journalism degree from one of the top schools in the country. Like she just outperformed. And there were a lot of occasions when I was in the corporate world when I ran up against that limit.

Now I’m looking at the person above me going, I will absolutely crush that person if it’s a fair evaluation, but it’s not. So I’m like, I’m just going to go out into the world. And I’m glad because it forced me out into the world of being an entrepreneur. And that little flirtation with real estate and oh, 607 circles back around later to the agency. I joined up that worked with a lot of the top agents and introduced me to all the people. That ended up being clients and friends of mine to this day, like Jeff Khan. So it all came back around. Thank God I wasn’t able to go up the ladder and insurance because maybe I’d still be there and I’d be a much less happy person.

Pamela Bardhi
Yes. Amen to that. Do you think that that is shifting in the world? A little bit?

Matt Johnson
I do. I think we’re on the precipice of a huge shift, like speaking of the gal in South Africa. So both of her parents are university professors in Zimbabwe, very traditional, very focused on getting your education. Either go be an engineer, go be a doctor, go be a lawyer, or work for a big multinational. Like, it’s very traditional. She’s been working online for like, five years, and they’re caught, they were up until the pandemic. They were asking her like, hey, when are you going to stop this dabbling with working from home stuff and go get a real job. You know, even partially teasing partially not. And then the pandemic hit, and they’re like, Okay, we get it. So when stuff like that happens, and I hear stories like that, I’m like, good. Like, it’s finally starting to shift.

Pamela Bardhi
Well, I was reading stats yesterday. So I don’t know if you’re familiar with Regis, the coworking. Yeah, they’re saying by 2030 77% of people are looking for an office close to their home. Okay, one thing right now. And then one of the things by 2030, there’s gonna be a ridiculous demand. For office like basically like co-working space, I forget what the exact.

Matt Johnson
I think that and just for real estate like you’ll see three-bedroom homes will now be two bedrooms in office. Like they’ll only work for people that have one kid because they’ll need that third bedroom for an office. And up into four and five-bedroom homes will now become like more standard. Because one of those will have to be an office for one of the two parents who now work from home, then co-working spaces like I’m looking forward to it. I could see a lot of I don’t know what you think about commercial real estate. But yeah, I mean there’s a lot of slack, in commercial real estate that probably needs to be soaked up. And maybe co-working spaces will help because there’s a huge bubble in that in that area.

And who knows what’s gonna soak it up. But yeah, I could see that being a massive change and for the better, like people working from home. University degrees not being such a big thing anymore. And like in my agency, I know when they’re doing a good job. Either they produce or they don’t write because everything comes down to two or three key metrics that I keep track of. When in the history of the human race, have you been able to like evaluate whether somebody is doing a good job from 1000 miles away without babysitting them. That’s going to change a lot of stuff.

And some people are going to lose their jobs but ultimately the people that are really good are going to rise to the top and make more money. And the people that don’t will make less so that’ll be it’ll be good for some and bad for others. But ultimately, for society, it’ll be a very good thing that you can tell who’s producing and who’s not.

Pamela Bardhi
Man, I love it. Well, it’s just so interesting to see where the world is going. And I talk to entrepreneurs about this because I truly feel like the world is storming toward Jonsered entrepreneurship. Like slowly, everyone’s kind of starting to create their own business or their own thing. Or like there’s never been so much interest like so I graduated from college in 2013 undergrad. And I remember when I graduated, I was the first one in school history to create a major in entrepreneurship.

First World and the entire school history. I like doing interdisciplinary studies and I made it all entrepreneurship and only well how entrepreneurial have you to be like the first one. Because I was like, I don’t want a minor in it, I want to major in it. And then I did it with double major with communications because they tie in so well. I mean, the best communicators in the world are the most successful. So it was interesting. And I went back and I go and speak to my alma mater, Stonehill college all the time.

Seeing the number of students who have entrepreneurship as their minor was mind-blowing. I was like, whoa, like 10 out of the 30 students in the class would be majoring in that. And I’m like the era of the side hustle and just all these things. So it’s the coolest thing. And I always love getting in on that, because I mean, you started that at a young age as well, you know, getting into the entrepreneurial realm.

Matt Johnson
Yeah, sort of, although I didn’t come back to it until my mid-30s. And that’s when it actually took off and worked well for me. But yeah, so like I’m seeing because I run an internship. Like occasional internship program whenever I need an infusion of talent into the agency. So I work with and I get to talk to a lot of kids that are either the last couple of years of school. Or just a couple of years out of school right in that three to the four-year time range. So mid-20s. And I’ve noticed like in the last year, or year and a half. Like the talent level that you can get in my little corner of like getting people to freelance for you that the talent level is skyrocketed.

Like I’m getting people coming into my internship program that is willing to work for 12 bucks an hour who have already launched a podcast. Like already booked guests as they’ve already done some of this stuff. And they work for a financial advisory firm, and they launched the podcast and social media for that firm. The talent level is just insane. I think that’s because they’re starting to realize that there’s more freedom. And more control in cobbling together two or three or four freelance gigs. Then and going and working for a quote, unquote, good company.

Now, one of my guys that went through my internship program, helped me build out some of the internal systems and he was amazing. He went and got a job with a startup. It’s like, well, that’s cool. Like, yeah, go work full time for a startup. It’s moving fast and breaking things and doing some cool stuff. Like, go do that. Absolutely. But a lot of other people his age are just cobbling together things, which is an amazing, amazing development for entrepreneurship and business in general. I love it.

Pamela Bardhi
Yeah, it’s so fascinating. And speaking of your entrepreneurship, you said you bounce back on it in your mid-30s? So what motivated you to do that? I know you mentioned your job.

Matt Johnson
There was one big shift. It has to do with kind of the online marketing and music world. So towards the tail end of my career in music, I’m building this skill set of marketing music and taught myself how to build websites and use social media to promote music. I started looking at the business models, basically, of independent musicians that actually make money. Like, they’re spending 80% of their time marketing on the business side. And only 20% of the time making music like I could do that. And I could make 25 grand a year, 30 grand a year. I’m like, that sounds terrible. How about I go take the marketing skillset and go use it in business. Then still spend 20% of my time making music and just doing the stuff that I want to do for fun.

So that was the shift. I’m like, Okay, well, let’s go do that. So I just kind of I don’t know, like, I wasn’t really actively looking. But I kind of started keeping my eye out for things. And I answered one and only one ad. It was for this digital agency that was based in my hometown to the CEO. And I got on a call that night after I reached out to them, we ended up talking for an hour that first night. He ended up being one of my best friends. I got to be with that agency for them starting the journey of going from like 100 clients a month to 500 clients a month. I either work there or his friends at the CEO and helped him just talk through the decisions.

And like all the I was just around for basically that whole huge scaling up story was actually profiled by Vern Harnish. Who wrote the book scaling up is like in some online magazine, it was a really amazing experience. So like, the only way I would have figured out entrepreneurship was that I got around it like I got to go hang out. And I work shoulder to shoulder with the CEO of a real company. I got to see how he talked to clients, how he ran things, how he structured his life, how he built systems. Like I was in it. I was eyeballs deep in it every day and adjust. That was the thing that changed my life. Because it basically was an insanely massive growth period.

Like there were things that I learned that he could only learn by osmosis. I could have read 1000 books, and I love business books. But I could have read them 1000 times over and not learned what I learned from just hanging around with somebody who’s doing it. So anyway, yeah, once I started working for that agency, I didn’t stick around as an employee for more than a year. I went out and started my own thing, which he helped me do. And then we’re just friends from that point on.

So even after I left, I still got to hang around and be part of the decision-making and the thought process while I was still building my own thing. So it was an incredible experience. And being around that is what gave me the firm foundation to launch out and know that I could do it if that makes sense. Because I didn’t know up until then that I could.

Pamela Bardhi
That’s amazing. It seems like Did he speak into you? Like there’s always a cheerleader somewhere in your life. So like, I’ve been some of your biggest cheerleaders that have motivated and inspired you.

Matt Johnson
He’s been one occasion he has his moments. And there’s been others Jeff Cohn has been one. In fact, he just asked me to come speak at his team-building event in Long Beach this January. I’m like oh, we’re on a panel or something. It’s like no, see, like, I want you to come speak. I’m like, about what to like team leaders like I they’re all my friends and clients. That doesn’t mean I need to be speaking to them from the podium about what they should be doing. It’s not unlike even he had to cheerlead and go no, this is what I want you to talk about. Like, get just get up on stage and do it. So there’s people like that most of them have been clients slash friends that have been my biggest cheerleaders along the way.

People that I’ve gotten to know behind the scenes that go no like you go, go write a book, like get it out of your system. Go do this, go speak. Yeah, cuz I just like I’m still new. Like, I’m new in the business. I feel like a newbie. I’m five years into just like being in the legit business world. And I have thoughts and opinions. But that doesn’t make me right. You know if that makes sense. So yeah, I’ve had people kind of pushing me out into the spotlight faster than I would have gone myself.

Pamela Bardhi
That’s awesome. And you know, with starting any business, the first five years are the trickiest. Because you’re trying to learn all the strengths, all the weaknesses, and all those things. What have been some of the struggles and how have you like bounce back from it, or like, reframed and kept moving forward?

Matt Johnson
Okay, well, it’s a good thing. So I mentioned the four bands, right, I did the same thing. It was a mistake. By the way, three of those bands ended in rehearsing for six months to a year playing one gig and then breaking up. And I mean, like, classic musician, story, rehearsing the basement for a year, play one gig, and then the alcoholic bipolar releasing or goes AWOL, and the band breaks up. Anyway, what was funny was I got into the business, then immediately made the same mistake. So I found myself in four ventures in the real estate space cup, like coaching, consulting, membership. And then like Jeff cones consulting company, and then I was running this little agency.

Basically, it wasn’t really an agency, it was just basically a team that produced the podcasts that I was involved in. And then I rented out that team to other people when they weren’t working for me. Well, then that as demand, like, people started coming to me going, like, Hey, can you launch my podcast? Can you produce it like, I see that you built the system or whatever? And it was like it broke the little system that I had, and I started having to pay more attention to it. I’m like, holy cow, like I’m in four different things.

My time is stretched, I felt like I was the one that walked away from every meeting with the mile-long to-do list. Because I’m, like, getting stuff done. I’m an executor. I just get stuff done. So I looked at that. And I went, Okay, I made the same mistake because I didn’t music. I’m involved in too much stuff. I said, yes, too many times. Now, what do I do like? Well, if I’m really going to focus, something I wanted to focus on on the thing that gave me the most ownership. And the most potential if it went well. So I got out of pretty much all the joint venture partnership equity agreements that I was in. Just like some, sometimes that meant letting them continue on with the project. Sometimes that meant shutting it down.

I was involved in the podcast company now this like the number one podcast company in financial advisor space. I built the operations of that business. Then I’m like, I got to take a step back, take the equity, go run with it. And they did. They did a great job. And I don’t regret giving a part of that. Because it allowed me to focus on the one thing where I felt like I had the most control.

And then on the back end of my main real estate podcast, we still have a rev-share agreement in place that makes six figures a year off that podcast is like. Great, okay, so maintain that those are the only things that I’m really involved in. And so I cleared up that mistake, it was a lot. It was painful in the short term. But ultimately, it was one of the best things I’ve ever done.

Pamela Bardhi
That’s awesome. So I know that there’s a lot of entrepreneurs in that realm where or you know, the people-pleasers that just say yes to everything. Yeah. What would be a recommendation of how do you walk out of something without burning that bridge?

Matt Johnson
That’s a really great question. And I managed to pull it off because all the people that I was involved with stuff in are still friends. I think it was it was putting the success of the venture over what I wanted in the short term. So I think it was coming at it from the right point of view, it was approaching them and going, Hey, this is not sustainable for me to like, stay involved at a level I have been. But the priority is that if we choose to keep this going like I’m going to do what’s uncomfortable for me for a while. To make sure that the venture stays healthy and intact, let’s just find a way to start transitioning me out.

And then it was like, okay, like you’re willing to take on, you’d be willing to like, stay in the shit for a little while longer. You’re not just bailing? So I think that was part of it. So a lot of them, you know, one project was put aside one and then the other two. We just kind of gradually phased out like one we just kind of said, Okay, well, let’s give the equity back. Then here’s my responsibilities. And who else takes that? I even hired somebody for one of them in one in one case that is still with them. It was I think it was just coming at it from that perspective. They could see where my priorities where. My heart was thinking maybe that’s the best way to put it, that my heart was still in it that I wanted to succeed.

Pamela Bardhi
Hmm, gotcha. So just take it delicately because I know some people are freaked out that they stretched themselves so far. They’re like, well, I don’t know because I’ll feel bad if this person says this and this and this. And I’m like, well, it’s worse if you stay and like self-sabotage the whole thing. You know, it is really is and so many people like how do you plan the exit strategy on this because I love them. But I want to get out and as you know, a lot of entrepreneurs No, like, face this battle. So it’s really interesting to hear

Matt Johnson
I know. And now I’m of the mind that you plan the exit strategy before you get in that. Once you learn that lesson, then you’re like, huh, before I get into something. Let’s figure out what happens if one of us decides to go our separate ways for perfectly normal reasons.

Pamela Bardhi
Yeah, right, totally. And so then you mentioned your book, which is micro famous. So your cheerleaders pushed you to write that bad boy, tell me all about it.

Matt Johnson
I wrote the wrong book first. That’s a funny part of it. I wrote like a 40,000-word book, back in like 2018, or something like that. And then I realized crap. It was just the wrong book for the wrong time. So then I had to go back to the drawing board and go. Okay, I needed a book that like laid out my point of view on marketing and the things that I wanted my clients and my friends to know. That would eliminate a lot of the frustration and the self-judgment that I saw going around in the speaking coaching consulting world. There’s a lot of it, there’s a lot of frustration, there’s a lot of self-judgment. And to me, it was coming from a few specific places, and just poor expectations and stuff.

So I wanted to write a book that I wish that my clients had read before. They would sign up with me right like to say that if they did, they will come out with a lot of the same belief system that I did. And it will save them a lot of frustration. That was the original idea for the book. And it evolved from there. It was the original spark of the content itself came from me running this completely accidental split test, basically. So I did the same thing that you did with your podcast, which is just hey, let’s just podcasts like my first one, I had no idea what the FM was doing. You know, I and my co-hosts were just like, hey, let’s see if this I don’t know if anybody listened to us. Let’s see if this works.

We had a list of people to mail it to. We’re like, Alright, let’s try it. Then a few months later, I started working with Jeff Cohn. And we launched the team-building podcast which eventually became the team-building podcast. And what was interesting about it was that my first podcast real estate uncensored built this, like mainstream audience. Like our audiences, like the average agent, great, cool. Lots of downloads, lots of accolades, lots of attention on social media looks great from the outside. It’s awesome. It’s fun. But the podcast with Jeff Cohn, the team building podcast, is aimed at this super small niche of people in the residential real estate space that are building teams have money. Don’t have a lot of time and love to pay for coaching.

So that podcast grew a multi-six figure company behind it in less than two years. Events, group coaching, like Jeff never had to like Coach individual one-on-one people didn’t have to go through that phase. He basically skipped that phase and went right to throwing events and doing scaled-up group coaching. Like that’s unheard of, to just basically skip the one-on-one coaching phase and go right into that stuff. That’s what that podcast did. So I’m like, I’m sitting back going, I’m co-hosting two different podcasts and one’s way easier to monetize it. And the other and it’s the smaller one with no email list and no social media audience and not a lot of attention.

You know, I’m saying, like, it was just it broke my brain and broke everyone’s brain. So I just started reverse engineering. Okay, well, what is it about that podcast and the ones that are like it? Why did that work? And why was that so much easier to monetize? And that led to all the concepts that ended up in the book. But that was the initial spark of it was just having a split test that I ran by complete accident.

Pamela Bardhi
That’s so interesting. It’s like every single invention that’s been found by accident. Like, what there it is, right?

Matt Johnson
Exactly.

Pamela Bardhi
So awesome. Oh, my goodness,

Matt Johnson
And it’s just getting into action. You know, try to remind me of that, because I tend to be the analyzer, the one that really wants to think things through, which is fine. But yeah, there’s just some times where you got to set the analysis aside and go, I have no idea. I don’t know if this is going to work. Let’s just try it. And maybe if you’re an owl, and you’re an analyst. You set a time limit of a few months, and say, hey, if I don’t, I’m gonna reevaluate this in three months. And we’ll see how it goes. But until then, I’m just gonna jump in without looking at the bottom. There’s just times we’ve got to do that.

Pamela Bardhi
How do you get out of your own head like that? I know a lot of people want these answers.

Matt Johnson
I’m in my head all the time. I don’t know that I have an answer for that, I’m a natural introvert. So I’m in my head all the time. I’m constantly reevaluating my decisions and thinking about how I can make things better. And am I on the right track? And how can I tweak things and optimize stuff? So I don’t know that really goes away. If you’re that if you’re inclined that way. In terms of, not letting it stop you, I think, the setting those types of time limits. And then I’ll give you something, okay. So one of the things that I was judging myself about was for the first few years of the business.

I didn’t do anything in music, I basically set it aside, shut that part of myself off. I’m a business guy right now for the foreseeable future. And I was talking to one of my mentors about it. And he said, well, you’ve got to strike a deal with yourself. Like, what does that mean? He’s like, look if you’re focused on the business right now, there’s nothing wrong with that. But you have to strike a deal with yourself that when the time is right, you’re going to bring back that part of yourself. In the meantime, the deal is you don’t judge yourself. I’m like, Oh, that’s interesting. So it’s striking a deal that yes. I’m setting it aside for now in exchange for coming back to it later, but the deal is, I can’t judge myself and self criticize in the meantime.

For the fact that I’m not putting a lot of energy into what used to be a huge part of my life, he’s like, yes, the key is you got to let the self-judgment go. I think that’s where if you’re like an analyzer type the struggles to get into action, which I don’t get the impression, that’s you. But it may be people in the audience that will help is like, Hey, I’m gonna do this thing. But I’m going to strike a deal with myself that until I know whether it’s going to work or not, I’m not going to judge myself. For the decision that I made, or how it’s going or anything like that, like zero self-judgment, just do it and see how it goes.

Pamela Bardhi
That’s awesome. I’m kind of the same way. So in my realm of being, I’m like, Pam, how do you just like take risks and not worrying about anything? I’m like, honestly when you jump into a pool, you just hold your nose, close your eyes. And just like, I just know, one thing, right? Like, when you do that, and you jump into a pool, you always float back up. So in my realm, I’m like, listen, the universe always has your back. If something doesn’t go right, then you do something else. But at least you’re like, hey, I tried it. And this didn’t work. But at least we’re gonna, you know, not let’s not go this favor. Let’s go that way. The universe will always let you back up to the surface. That’s what I always feel

Matt Johnson
Like you had that belief system from a young age.

Pamela Bardhi
Yeah, because I was an underdog, right? Like, so my parents came to the US when I was five years old. So I watched my parents with no family, not knowing how to speak English, no job security, here. nothing. And just like came from scratch because my grandmother put their names in the visa lottery. What happened was, they didn’t know so they didn’t really save to come here. And my brother was a newborn, and I was five. So they watched them, my dad worked three jobs. My mom’s trying to work from home, whatever she can. Because we were so little, watching them build something for themselves. Seeing that as like, Okay, anything is possible.

Some things you know, my dad did, he tried it. He’s like, oh, okay, cool. This works. This doesn’t work. But then he was working three jobs. And then the owner of the business, the restaurant that he worked at, gave him a downpayment, to go out and buy a business. You know, he was like, so cool. The way you build wealth in America is one of two ways. A-you own your own business, B- your own real estate, like I know, you don’t have the credit history to buy real estate right now. But at least go out and buy a business. Here it is, and give them a downpayment. These opportunities came from my dad trying and just folding his nose jumping in and knowing that God has had his back.

Matt Johnson
Wildly jealous, because my parents despite being competent, and their life was just fine. And they succeeded beyond what they probably thought when they’re younger as possible. They didn’t do a great job of passing that mentality along. I have friends like that are a lot like you that just for some reason, some events in their childhood instilled that belief that it’s all gonna work out. I was raised in such a weird religious background, that it was like, Hey if you don’t get all of your eyes dotted and your T’s crossed, bad things happen. So I had, like, all of that stuff going into the business world.

And so the whole move fast and break things like that was very outside of my comfort zone. I’m like, I was an A-plus student, like, let’s, you know, I want to have my ducks in a row. And then you get out into this weird Wild West of like coaching and consulting and speaking, and there are no systems. Everybody’s just doing random stuff and I love it. I love it now, but I had to learn to get comfortable with it and wasn’t comfortable at first. Because you can’t be that person that has to always have all the T’s crossed and the I’s dotted. It just doesn’t work out here in the wild west of entrepreneurialism, so I had to get comfortable with that.

And I think there’s a lot of people out there like me, that didn’t have those great foundational experiences in their childhood to learn that everything’s gonna be okay. It feels very, like on the edge, like I’m on a tight rope and one wrong move one way or the other. And I’m going down, that’s more of the mentality that I grew up with.

Pamela Bardhi
It’s so interesting to see how so many things are correlated, right? Like I didn’t know, things that you get instilled in yourself at such a young age. Like, what I didn’t know, up until this year was that your subconscious programming begins when you’re born until you’re seven years old, your data state? And that gets embodied in your belief system, literally for the rest of your life. And then you got to learn to unprogrammed that later down the line, you know, but I was like, This is so fascinating. You know, it’s just so interesting how that all plays out. It blows my mind, honestly, and I think about and I’m like, holy crap. Like, it’s also correlated and linked. It’s bizarre.

Matt Johnson
It is and yeah, when I think about just the theme of your show, being underdog, there’s people that you look at from the outside. We’re like, ah, they didn’t have any issues. You just never know, I was talking to a client of mine. She’s a coach in the productivity space. And she deals with like, the emotional underpinnings of all this stuff. She shared a story about one of her clients that she was having trouble just putting herself out there. And just telling people about her business in an authentic way. She started diving into what was your childhood like? So it was great.

My parents were amazing. Come to find out her older brother made some offhand comments about how nobody cares what your opinion nobody wants to hear from you. She managed to internalize that like the age of five, six, or seven, something young like you mentioned. And then that haunted her for the rest of her life and offhand comment that her brother loving, older brother made.

So in spite of having a great childhood and being set up for success by all outward measures she created, you know, she looked at herself kind of as an underdog. And didn’t think she was good enough and think she was smarter that nobody wanted to hear what she had to say. It’s holding back her business. So it’s like, it’s really hard to tell from the outside what people have had to overcome to get where they’re at.

Pamela Bardhi
Seriously. And I learned recently that emotions get trapped in your tissues, like your muscles, and even your teeth. I was like, what? Yeah, yeah. Around all this, and I’m like,

Matt Johnson
Alright, so my hatred of the dentist gets trapped in my teeth.

Pamela Bardhi
Probably. But it’s just so interesting. And it’s so fascinating to see life experiences lead to another and I mean, in your agency. So you’re focused on the podcast space? Yeah. So you’ve worked on some pretty incredible podcasts as well. And it’s just so interesting to see the niches and how they all play out. What has been your favorite experience with that business so far, like client story or just it?

Matt Johnson
Okay. So there’s a running gag on my show real estate uncensored. Back in the early days of the podcast, when we were doing a lot of like, sales training, we did scripting exercises and roleplay. And in the roleplay, my co-host, Greg decided that number one. I had a wife who, and then he narrowed down the name. So like Becky or something like that. I had a fake wife and then he gave me a kid. And then that became kid became two kids, and then three kids, and then they become overweight. Then they became diabetic. It just kept getting bigger and bigger, bigger.

So I was at this event one time in real estate like three years ago, and somebody I’ve never seen before never talked to before in my life came up. And he’s like, Matt, how was Becky in the kids? Because they were in on the job. They knew his job. And that was one of the most fun experiences and just having people come up and know what the inside jokes are. Because they’ve been listening to your podcast for a year. That was a really fun experience because it’s bizarre. It’s bizarre and really cool, especially for an introvert, to be able to walk into a place and have people know who you are before you get there. And it’s really cool to have people feel like they know you. So it bypasses all the small talk and it gets right into fun, playful conversations.

Without the awkwardness that an introvert feels when you first start talking to somebody. That’s a really cool feeling. We talked about this, but I’ve been talking more and more about being introverted. And just how that plays in with all the coaching, consulting, speaking stuff. Its podcasting is perfect for someone like me as an introvert. Because I love going into a place and having people already feel like they have a relationship with me. Because then we can jump into a real relationship really, really quickly. That’s a lot of fun.

Pamela Bardhi
Well, what’s really fascinating is podcasts, it’s like they enable you to create an authentic connection and relationship with somebody. Like before you even meet them, as you said, you walk into the room, they know what you’re about, they know your energy. And then when you get to actually meet them, it’s the coolest thing ever. Like this literally happened to me. I walked into this Christmas party, and I’m like, I probably don’t know maybe two people. Three people came up to me, I was like, oh, pam, pam, Bardhi. Oh, my God, we’re connected on social media.

And I’m like, because your podcast, oh my god, this is why I love this. I’m just there like, it’s the most authentic way to build connection. That’s why I love what you do because you’re elevating that platform. It’s the coolest thing in the world. Because those actions are invaluable. Like, how are you going to get to coach? Like, how much marketing are you going to have to pay for to get somebody to get that excited about you? And like, already feel like they know you and connect with you like how know what?

Matt Johnson
Yeah, it’s insane. And that’s just the audience side. That’s one side of it. The side that also gets me excited is the relationship side. Because I’ve been able to connect people because one or both of them had a podcast. And I couldn’t have really made the connection happen. There wouldn’t have been a really compelling reason to get them on the phone with each other, even though I knew they’d really hit it off. So podcasting like this, just the world we’re moving to. We’re just about everyone is going to have one at least in the coach and consulting space. It’s really cool.

Because I can take some of that, as you should really know Pam, like, I think you guys had hit it off. And you should really know each other. I don’t know anything beyond that. Like, great. I can introduce them to you as a podcast guest. I have a lovely conversation, and then you just see where it goes. And if I’m right, and there’s a great connection. Great.

All those good positive feelings come back to me because I made the intro I made it happen. And if it doesn’t, no big deal, because you’ve got a podcast, it’s not a waste of your time to talk to new people. So yeah, like I just find that I’m able to introduce so many people in my world to each other. Because one of both of them is a podcast host. And I just couldn’t have made those connections under any other circumstances.

Pamela Bardhi
It’s fascinating. It truly is. And that leads me to my next question for Matt, which is what are you up to in the world these days? What’s new in your realm?

Matt Johnson
We’re definitely launching new podcasts all the time. So if anybody’s in the coaching, consulting, speaking expert, he kind of thought leaders he thought people think that’s a word thought leader. If not, I’m gonna W-word thought leader he space. If you’re in that space, just reach out to me it’s got microfamous.com. There’s little video about what we do and but yeah micro famous the book you can get on Amazon. And you can get the podcast as well where I just go deep on the strategic concepts and stuff. So that’s the stuff that I’m excited about. Honestly, aside from the promo part of it, what I’m interested in and excited about is exploring. Putting all of my content on to substack on one substack blog is going to be called the micro famous field report. You can already go subscribe now.

But as I do these things, where lately maybe some of these interesting little side podcasts we’re talking about. We just talked to, like interested, interesting people. And it maybe is like not very well branded, it’s not doesn’t have to be a whole big thing that goes on for the next five years. I want a central location for all that interesting, fun stuff that I’m doing. And the cool conversations I’m having in this world where people can get that all in one central place. I’m looking forward to building that out, and just kind of seeing where it goes.

Pamela Bardhi
I love that. I absolutely love that man. And now you’ve got to let everyone know where to find you, my friend

Matt Johnson
Get microfocus.com or just hit me up on Facebook facebook.com/get Micro famous.

What Would Matt Older Self Tell His Younger Self

Pamela Bardhi
Awesome. And one final question, which is my favorite? What would your older self tell your younger self, based on what you know now, one last piece of advice,

Matt Johnson
My older self would tell my younger self to go out and interview the most successful people I could get my hands on. If I would have done that before I got into real estate, I wouldn’t have gotten into real estate in the same way. And I think I would have been in the moment I would have been more successful then. But more importantly, I would have just built a really good connection with people that thought Matt’s cool and smart and up and coming. I want to help him out. And I would have gotten along a lot further and I would have been in business in my mid-20s instead of my mid-30s. It just would have made everything faster. So just getting around successful people asking good intelligent questions. That’s what I would tell my younger self to do.

Pamela Bardhi
That’s amazing. I want to thank you so much for being here today. I’m so grateful to you. And I had a blast too. You’re amazing and I love what you’re up to in the world. And thank you so much.

Tune in to the episode to hear the rest of my incredible interview with the amazing Matt Johnson.