The Solopreneur Success podcast has published 52 episodes so far – enough to listen to one every week for a year. Today we look back at the five most popular episodes so far based on total listens.

Listen to this special episode with excerpts from the top five episodes now then follow the links below to those episode show notes pages to listen to them in their entirety and get all the extras mentioned in each episode.

Here’s the official top 5 episodes countdown!

#5: SSP010 Old School Networking and Relationship Building with Robert Butwin

#4: SSP020 Copywriting: The Power of Persuasive Writing with Katie Yeakle & Rebecca Matter

#3: SSP029 Big Idea Marketing with Bond Halbert

#2: SSP039 Business Infrastructure with Alicia Butler Pierre

#1: SSP018 7-Figure Affiliate Marketing with John Crestani

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Solopreneur Success™ Transcript

SSP053 Solopreneur Success Podcast’s Top 5 Episodes (So Far)

Steve Coombes:

Hey solopreneurs, it’s Steve Coombes here with a very special episode for you today. Believe it or not, when I started the Solopreneur Success podcast, I really wasn’t sure whether I’d be able to get good guests or keep this thing going past the first several episodes.

I’m happy to say I’ve had scores of amazing guests who have consistently shared powerful stories and sound advice for solopreneurs like us. Recently, we passed 52 episodes released, enough to listen to one every week for an entire year, or one a day for the next several weeks.

But just in case you’re not up for a complete backlist listen through today, I thought it would be fun to take a quick look at the listener statistics and reveal which episodes were your favorite episodes based on total listens.

Keep listening to find out which episodes made the cut because your all-time fave five are coming up right now on Solopreneur Success!


Welcome to the Solopreneur Success™ podcast, where successful business owners gather to share true stories and sound advice to help you start and grow your own solopreneur business. Come soar with us and design the life you love. Now, here’s your host, Steve Coombes.


Kicking off our top five countdown of your favorite Solopreneur Success episodes so far features a guest well-known across multiple industries, but especially in the MLM world, for his personal networking prowess, Robert Butwin. I can personally attest to Robert’s generosity, as he’s personally introduced me to multiple people and opportunities since we first connected a few years ago.

But like every successful business person, Robert had to start somewhere. In his case, it was an already successful family business. But it wasn’t a good fit for him and soon Robert sought out new business opportunities. Also, like many of us, hearing of other people’s success resonated with Robert and influenced him to take his businesses further than he ever thought possible.

Robert Butwin:

I originally started out, you know, my first venture outside of our family business, on a part-time basis I ended up running a nightclub and I was very successful. It became the most popular nightclub, and I can tell you stories around that and how I did it. But it was virtually, the underlying principle of everything that I’ve done is, I see things outside the box. I think differently. I look at things differently.

So, ultimately when a little sister from a fraternity that I graduated with at the University of Minnesota came to me, and he told me about how this guy that used to be a mattress salesman selling for a company called Slumber All, in the Twin Cities, was making about three times the amount of money in a month than I was making in a year. That caught my attention.

I didn’t know exactly how I was gonna succeed, I didn’t know why I was gonna succeed or what I was gonna do to succeed, but I realized that there was another path for me. It was one of these defining moments.


Defining moments. We all have them. They’re the crossroads at which we make a decision to do something… or not. In every business – and in life in general – you’ll find defining moments where situations, influences, and your choices around them, affect you and those around you for years to come.

Several years ago, I was invited to speak at the American Writers & Artists Institute’s annual boot camp. My presentation to hundreds of successful and aspiring copywriters that day was all about those defining moments.

As I record this, I’m currently writing a book to help solopreneurs start their own successful business. I’ll share those defining moments again in that book. Later in this episode I’ll tell you how to get a free copy of that book when it’s released.

But now it’s time to introduce number four of the top five Solopreneur Success episodes to date. Not only was this episode my first featuring two guests, the guests are none other than Executive Director Katie Yeakle and President Rebecca Matter from the world’s premier copywriting training provider, American Writers and Artists Institute. Or, as most call the company, AWAI.

Not only does AWAI train writers in the craft of persuasive writing, they also help them grow successful businesses, which begins by knowing your own ideal customer and helping them find you as the solution as Rebecca explains here in this clip.

Rebecca Matter:

If you just take a step back, and I recommend everyone do this. Think about who your ideal customer is. Who do you wish would pick up the phone, visit your website, click on the link? Who is that person? And then think about those problems that they’re having, and the solutions that you provide them. You owe it to them to help them to plan out their copy and content to allow them to find you as the solution.


I believe it’s fair to say no company on planet Earth has trained more successful copywriters than AWAI. And I’ll say Katie and Rebecca are two of my favorite people in business because they and AWAI were instrumental in helping me establish my first successful solopreneur business, as a copywriter, long before I was ever asked to speak or teach for their organization.

Like every great business, AWAI created their own success by solving a real pain in the marketplace. Listen as Katie shares the roots of AWAI’s startup story.

Katie Yeakle:

AWAI got started – it’s the stuff of legends now, but the real story is – this is back in – we actually started in ‘97, but we started talking about it in 1996 is when the wheels really started turning. And it started from a need for copywriters. Specifically within Agora, which was a big publishing company, but it wasn’t anywhere near the size it is now. It was maybe a tenth of the size that it is now. And they, like other newsletter publishers, just didn’t have enough copywriters. It was throughout this pocket, this newsletter publishing world, that was one of the biggest pain spots, is that they didn’t have enough copywriters.

Steve: The newsletter industry’s pain of trouble finding competent copywriters – and Agora’s successful in-house program for training new writers – became the big idea seed for AWAI, a company that trains writers from around the world today.

Speaking of Big Ideas, that was the core topic in #3 of our top five episodes to date which featured Bond Halbert, son and protégé of legendary copywriter and marketer Gary Halbert. Only Bond doesn’t merely ride the coattails of his famous father. Rather, he’s an incredibly gifted marketer in his own right.

During our conversation, Bond stressed the point that big ideas are the foundation of big results. And if you’re having trouble coming up with your own, it’s not very expensive in the grand scheme of things to bring in someone else who has them.

Bond Halbert:

If you think about it on those scales and those terms, you can hire the idea guys that are – they’re not nearly as expensive as everybody thinks, because they’re getting paid per hour. And I’m saying people like you and people like me are like, hey, I’ve got this one particular incidence, and I would like to get some ideas on what you think might be some good ideas for it.

And you don’t say, ‘here’s my copy, critique it’. If you say ‘here’s my copy and critique it’, I’m going to critique your copy. I’m not gonna give you a whole new direction to go in. I’m not gonna say, ‘this is where you should do the marketing, this is what your angle should be, this is what you…’ I’m gonna actually say, ‘no, look, you’re being repetitive here, you shouldn’t be using these kinds of adverbs, this is a more compelling angle, you’re not calling out the target in the headline,’ all of that stuff.

That’s revamping your current, existing piece. If you want big ideas, you wanna come in with the kind of idea, ‘here’s what I bring to the table, this is who I am, this is my background, this is my expertise, this is my knowledge. I’d like to hop on a call with you, and then I would like to get some big ideas on how to separate, how to get that USP, how to look unique compared to everybody else.’

‘How can I make sure that my product delivers results faster, delivers better results? Delivers the results for less money? Delivers the same results that you would get somewhere else, but with higher quality, more prestigious?’ All these different things.


Let’s say you have a big product idea already. Bond also says you have a terrific advantage as a solopreneur in bringing that big idea to market, and pocketing far more money.


You’re talking to a lot of solopreneurs which I applaud, because even though you have to bring on other people to scale to get big, when you sell your own stuff you make a lot more money than if you work for clients. 5% of the gross of working for a client, to make a million dollars you have to pull in 20 million dollars gross sales. If you are doing a solopreneur deal and you’re running your own advertising, you can make a million dollars bringing in just 3 million dollars in gross sales. The numbers are much better with you.


So let’s say you have that big idea, and now you are growing fast as a solopreneur. If so, you already know growth tends to come with growing pains. Which is why you’ll want to listen – or re-listen – to #2 in our top five episodes to date, featuring Alicia Butler Pierre.

In fact, even if you’re just getting started you’ll want to hear what Alicia has to say as she helps fast-growing solopreneurs and small businesses set themselves up for profitable and sustainable success with good infrastructure.

Alicia Butler Pierre:

I define business infrastructure as an actual system for how you link your people, your processes, and your tools, to make sure that growth happens in a profitable and sustainable way. So, when I say tools, that also encompasses technology obviously, but also it could include equipment, certain pieces of furniture. You wanna make sure that you link all of those things together, so that when there’s a change in one, you can automatically see the impact across all other areas of your business.


If this idea is new to you, Alicia also describes what to consider when evaluating the current state of your business infrastructure for sustained growth.


Usually, the next step is some type of an assessment, where we, for two weeks, take a deep dive into all aspects of your company. We’re looking underneath the hood, we’re looking behind the curtain, the things that other people don’t see, but I want to see, because I want to truly get an understanding of your record management systems, how your workspace is laid out, what processes and procedures you have documented – if any – what job descriptions you have, do you have an organizational chart?

We take a look at all of those different things, and based on where your company is, we then make a very specific custom set of recommendations and lay out a plan of action for moving forward. Whether you decide to move forward with my company or not, you at least have that detailed blueprint for how to get your business infrastructure in place.


Speaking of growth, your all time #1 favorite episode to date, based on number of listens, features a solopreneur who didn’t stop at six figures, but built a 7-figure solopreneur business that was on track to hit 8 figures when I interviewed him – still as a solopreneur.

If you’re looking for inspiration as a solopreneur, meet one of the world’s most famous affiliate marketers, John Crestani, who shares what his solopreneur business offers him.

John Crestani:

You know, I was making over a million dollars a year, profit, and my business allowed me to travel in style and experience life, I believe, the way God meant for us to experience this wonderful creation that we are a part of.


Did you catch that? That’s not a million dollars in sales with a few pennies from each dollar earned. That’s a million-dollar annual profit. Talk about inspiration!

Not only was episode 18 featuring John Crestani your favorite episode so far, it was one of my favorites as well. John and I riffed on a huge variety of topics in that one – business and otherwise – all throughout that conversation.

Rather than share any more clips, I invite you to listen, or re-listen, to all five of these top five most-listened to episodes of Solopreneur Success to date. I’ve linked to each of them directly from this special episode’s show notes page found at

Earlier in this episode I also promised to tell you how to get a free copy of the book I’m writing. In fact, it’s the first of three books I’m writing, each on one of the Start, Grow, and Soar stages of business, matching this podcast’s tagline.

Getting a free copy is easy. Simply join my free Solopreneur Success Connections community at At launch I’ll be sure you get a free copy of the book just for being a member.

But don’t wait to join because not only will you get the book free, you’ll also get a front row seat into my whole book writing and publishing process, as I’m openly sharing my progress with weekly update emails to members of my community.

You can also find these updates in our private Facebook group, so if you’ve ever wondered what it actually looks like to mindmap, outline, draft, edit, design, publish and promote your first book – including the unexpected challenges and jubilant wins along the way – then join the Solopreneur Success Connections community now to stay up to date and follow my progress.

Remember, you can join free at or just follow the link found on every episode’s show notes page. Again, the link to this episode’s show notes page which includes links to all five of your favorite episodes to date is

Alright, that’s it for this episode. Thank you for listening! Look forward to talking to you next time.


Thank you for listening to the Solopreneur Success™ podcast. We hope you discovered valuable advice on how to start and grow your own successful solopreneur business. If you liked the podcast, you’ll love the all-new Solopreneur Success Connections™ community at Here, you’ll get exclusive access to our private, members-only community of business builders, free business building resources, and live online monthly training designed to accelerate your business success. Join us now at