Half a million! That is a big number, by any reckoning. But for a UK-based show about money, broadcast from a cupboard in Penzance, that's a VERY big number indeed.
The first episode was released into the wild on the 17th November 2012, and 35 people downloaded it that day. Only last Wednesday I had a record day for downloads, with 1,724 downloads that day.
So there are lots of you out there, listening each week. Not only do the numbers tell me that, but as an audience, you are more engaged now than ever; emailing me, leaving comments on the site, even leaving the odd voicemail after years of me pleading with you to do that!It's fair to say that after starting the podcast, I faffed around a bit for the first six months, putting out only eleven shows in that time. But, from 29th May 2013 when I put out session 12, I have broadcast weekly, missing only a handful of weeks in that time. Interestingly, in session 12 I interviewed Rob Bence and Rob Dix from The Property Podcast, and I interviewed them again only this week.
In fact, that's a good place to begin my thanks…
The Property Podcast
I owe the two Robs, masters of their craft, quite a bit, as I know that many of their listeners have become listeners of mine. They were kind enough to name-check me right at the start of their meteoric rise to lofty podcasting heights, and I know that I have benefitted ever since. So, thanks guys; I have great admiration for all you have achieved in business and in the world of podcasting. Long may it continue.
Seven Investment Management
Within the first 90 seconds of each show, I name check the guys at Seven Investment Management as they have been my sponsor since the start of the podcast. In fact, they began sponsoring me from video episode number 100, back in March 2011. Their support helps me buy equipment, hosting, and all the sundry but mounting costs of running an online business dedicated to getting the word out about simple financial planning. I couldn't do it without them – this is still a sideline for me, not my day job, remember – and so thank you to Tom Sheridan, Justin Urquhart Stewart, and the whole team at 7IM for their support, both financially and in many other ways.
Jacksons Wealth Management
My day job, as many of you will know, is as Managing Director of Jacksons Wealth Management, a firm of Chartered Financial Planners, based in Penzance, Cornwall. That is a busy job: I look after 200-odd clients of my own, while managing a team of 11 advisers and staff. I'm grateful to them for keeping the noise down and using the other stairs whenever I'm recording! I'm also deeply indebted to my co-directors Roger, Chas and Mike for giving me the space to follow this eccentric little passion of mine. Jacksons has benefitted from the profile that MeaningfulMoney has given me, for sure, but it is a fantastic place to work, which makes the frenetic pace much easier to bear than it might otherwise be.
La Famille Matthew
The reason I get out of bed each day, well actually, the three reasons, are my wife Joanne, and my two daughters Ellie (16) and Kate (13). I also have a Jack Russell called Maisy, but she's less important. Well, a little bit less…
MeaningfulMoney has been a part of all our lives for six years now – the first video went live in April 2010. Since then, I have spent countless hours tapping away on my Macbook; editing video, writing podcast scripts, creating graphics and tweaking HTML and CSS. I'm careful to honour my family with all the time they need, and be fully present when I am with them. This has meant some early starts, rising at 5am for two years to get the work done and also some late nights. I sometimes begin writing at 9:30pm.
Doubtless there have been sacrifices though, as I have pursued this mission to get decent, easy to apply financial information out to the world. So thank you to Jo, Smelly and Skater-girl. I love you all so much, and without you there'd be no point doing anything, let alone this…
You, dear listener, reader and viewer
I genuinely thought, when I began this journey six years ago, that maybe a few people would show up and watch the videos, and later on, listen to the podcasts. But the numbers have astounded me. We get desensitised to big numbers I think. A superstar YouTuber like Zoella or Casey might get millions of views a day. But let's face it, I'm a lot less pretty than Zoella, and I'm talking about pensions and stuff…
I'm also UK-based, where there are a few excellent personal finance blogs, but very few successful podcasts. We're catching up but we are still waaaayyy behind our American cousins. In a bid to provide actionable information, I haven't shied away from using UK-specific terms like ISAs, SIPPs and Stakeholder pensions. And yet I still get emails from folks all around the world telling me they have managed to translate that stuff back into their local version, and put it into action. Here is one paragraph from an absolute belter of an email I received from a US-based listener only two weeks ago:
You did not just give understanding. That understanding led to confidence, which led to action, which led to the life we always wanted in the city we love – Jason Calmes
How amazing is that? That's the mission folks – helping you take action to make your financial lives, and therefore the rest of your lives, better.
So thank you for listening, reading and watching. Thank you for leaving reviews on iTunes. Thank you for telling your friends and family about the show and the site. There wouldn't be much point if you didn't show up and download each week, so thank YOU for doing that, and for continuing to do it so faithfully.
I love you all very much.
PS. While I was writing this post in anticipation of going through the 500,000 number, it actually happened! Here's proof: