Podcast 27: How to Grow a with Douglas Smythe

By Spencer Haws |

Today is an exciting day.  I'm sharing a new podcast episode without even recording a single word on my own!


Yep, this guy named Perrin sends me an email the other day and says, “Hey, I just recorded a podcast for you!”  Weird. 🙂

Without any instruction from me, Perrin goes out and finds a guy that knows how to grow a moustache really well and interviews him.  At first, I was thinking I would have to tell Perrin that isn't really all about growing facial hair ( might be available?).

Luckily, Douglas Smythe (the guy that knows about moustaches) actually knows all about building a successful website as well.  Phew!  Something my audience is interested in!  (Although growing facial hair is pretty cool too).

Okay, okay…let me be real for a second here.

I'm absolutely THRILLED that Perrin has found a fantastic podcast guest and conducted an interview.  Douglas Smythe has grown his site about moustaches to over 100k visitors per month in less than a year!

You can check out his site at  He also has a podcast on iTunes called the Moustache and Blade Podcast.

I may not be on this podcast, but the advice shared is very actionable and the success story is inspiring!  And it was super easy for me to get this podcast…I could get used to this :).

From here, I'm going to turn it over to Perrin…

Podcast Overview

Hey guys! It’s Perrin. As most of you now know, I work here now. And one of the biggest perks by far is occasionally getting to contribute to the ol’ Niche Pursuits blog when the opportunity arises. Another perk is meeting tons of cool people. Some of those people are readers here. Some of them are fellow site builders. And some I’ve met through my very own site, aPennyShaved.

One of the things I did to grow aPennyShaved was to reach out to a bunch of other bloggers in the shaving community, a process I outlined in one of my previous posts. It was a super fun process, the response was spectacular, and I ended up making a bunch of cool friends.

One of those friends was Douglas Smythe, who founded We exchanged emails about shaving, discussed blogging strategies and ended up collaborating on a guest post, which was a ton of fun.

The more Douglas and I chatted, the more I became absolutely fascinated and blown away by his success in the very same community I was working to succeed in, especially because his site wasn’t just a simple ad-supported site. Douglas was leveraging his traffic to expand his shaving site into a larger, product-driven business. How cool is that?!

I’ve probably asked Douglas about a million questions by now, so I figured we might as well record them so you all can learn, too. Here are just a few of the things we cover:

I love getting to talk to other people about blogging and SEO, so it was a total treat for me to chat with Douglas for an hour. I learned a ton, and I think there’s a lot of good lessons for all of us in here, especially for folks like me, who are still relatively new to this whole business.

Here’s what I think is the most important lesson I learned: don’t just build sites to make money. Build them out of passion and enjoyment. The money is nice, of course, but the real fulfillment comes from digging into a subject, community and process you love.

If you do that, people will like you, you can distribute your brand much more widely, and you’ll have a lot of fun doing it! So, really, I guess for it boils down to three main lessons: (1) be passionate, (2) be everywhere, and (3) don’t be afraid to turn your simple site into something much bigger.

Hope you guys enjoy this one! Thanks again, Douglas!

Podcasts | 47 comments

By Spencer Haws

Spencer Haws is the founder of After getting a degree in Business Finance from BYU (2002) and an MBA from ASU (2007) he worked for 8 years in Business Banking and Finance at both Merril Lynch and Wells Fargo Bank.

While consulting with other small business owners as a business banker, Spencer finally had the desire to start his own business. He successfully built a portfolio of niche sites using SEO and online marketing that allowed him to quit his job in 2011. Since then he's been involved in dozens of online business ventures including: creating and exiting Long Tail Pro, running an Amazon FBA business for over 3 years and selling that business, founding, and co-founding You can learn more about Spencer here.

Want to learn step-by-step how I built my Niche Site Empire up to a full-time income?

Yes! I Love to Learn

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Douglas Smythe

Thank you gents, it was a lot of fun! I must say, I had a suspicion this show was up when I noticed a couple hits to my site from semalt!
Ahhh you SEO guys! (own it!)


Haha. You can expect quite a few more!

Spencer Haws

Thanks Douglas for doing the podcast interview! I love the story and the success you’ve had…congrats!


Wow! Perrin’s own podcast. Awesome!! Perrin, you’re an awesome addition to Niche Pursuits. You and Spencer do so well together. It’s not usual to see a blog like this with multiple people doing interviews, projects, etc. Pretty awesome, you guys could start a new trend.


Thanks man! Appreciate the kind words 🙂

Spencer Haws

Maybe so… 🙂

Pratik Unadkat

Awesome Perrin. Spencer just got the “right” right hand to help him out grow his business and his brand. 🙂


Thank you sir 🙂


Great work Perrin! You are really getting into this whole SEO business thing, impressive 🙂 Keep up the great work…always interested to follow fellow niche site builders 🙂


Wow, Douglas is really going for the “Be Everywhere” strategy. If you want to focus on only one site this is the way to go.

I dig the tips on social media like enticing people to Like a fan page for a giveaway. Something I noticed about Douglas fan page is that he’s got around 100 fans “talking about” his page. Out of 1600 or so Likes that’s pretty decent engagement. That’s even more engagement than Gentlemint’s FB page.

Props on truly building a following and a community!


Agreed. That’s one of the things Douglas does REALLY well.

Douglas Smythe

Thanks Jason, Spenc and Perrin! If you are into wet shaving or just “Man Talk” I really encourage you all to check out our podcast today! Also on that note, if you are into the wet shave we are currently trying to beef up our G+ community (G+ is key) visit:

Dan Thompson

I gotta re-listen to this podcast. You’ve got some good solid ideas with social media and you talk realllll quick.

Perrin knows how much I love this book; have you read Jab Jab Jab Left Hook – Douglas?

Great podcast gents.

Modern Decoration

Thanks man! Appreciate the kind words 🙂


This is a great podcast, nice work Perrin. Douglas, do you have a separate account made just for your social sites? Like, an alias instead of your real name? Also, do you teach this stuff, you are very knowledgeable!?


Perrin, this is awesome, I’m stoked that you did this. Really cool that you leveraged your outreach efforts from A Penny Shaved.


Congratulations Perrin on your first podcast!
What a great guy Douglas is and fantastic information about his journey to creating a web presence and business.
More please!

Douglas Smythe

@ Bob,
Thanks! I do consulting on the side. If that interests you contact me!

@Dan – Listen quicker! That’s actually a quote from Alan Ginsburg. At a poetry reading back in the 50’s he had just finished his 6th cup of coffee and was up on stage burning through the poem “Howl” when someone in the audiences screamed “Read Slower!” – and he yells back “Listen Quicker!”
Classic stuff, if that ever comes up on Jeopardy, you’re welcome! 🙂
Thanks again folks for all the kind words and good luck in your…pursuits!


I’d be interested!

Douglas Smythe

Contact me through my site!

Dan Thompson

haha, duly noted douglas.

Douglas Smythe

@ Bob, as for separate accounts, yes. personal ones as well as brand sites. At times I can leverage these. hope that helps!

Frank Joseph

You guys are doing great! Would liked to see new student taking over!

[email protected]

Hey Perrin,

Great work with the podcast. The content was fantastic.

Will be looking out for more podcasts by you 🙂




What a great community this is

Lindsay Collins @ NicheGrind

Such a good podcast. Managed to get a bunch of great notes, especially the websites and apps he mentioned.

Also, wanna say that Perrin did an awesome job. I’m really jealous of you guys getting to work at this stuff full time.


Thanks man!

Douglas Smythe

I have not read that book yet…shall I pick it up?

Dan Thompson

Yes you should pick it up! It’s interesting enough and there are a ton of great examples of companies doing social well and poorly.

Plenty of practical advice as well!

Donald W

Great Podcast!

Spencer – You made a great choice with your employee, “that guy” is awesome!

Perrin – Great Job, the podcast was great. Right when I had a question you asked it! I kept half expecting to hear Spencer chime in somewhere, haha.

Douglas – Thank you for doing the show. Really valuable stuff and actionable. I really like the advice of finding something you can create and sell on your own. Great site too!

Thanks again you guys!

Spencer Haws

Thanks Donald!


Thanks man!

Douglas Smythe

Thank you sir! I would love to stop by again and just drop some SEO bombs!

Jeffrey Dibble

Hi Douglas,

First of all, I’m not a big fan of moustache but what catch my curiosity was how you grow from 200 visitors to 100,000 a year?

I must say your podcast really blow me away. I’ve learned a lot about the social thing you do and can’t wait to kick start it on my blog.

Thanks a lot.

Douglas Smythe

Thank you Mr Dibble!
Good Luck and though you may not be a fan of the ‘tache may I remind you…Moustache March is upon us!!!!


Excellent job Perrin! Glad to see you working hard to provide us with excellent information. I’ve been watching you since you won the niche site contest and your contribution to this community has been amazing. Thanks for going above and beyond. It sounds like you and Spencer make a great team.


Thanks for sharing this motivating podcast!
I am sure Perrin will definitely be successful in Niche industry after seeing his fast progress.


Great podcast Perrin. What a great guy Douglas is! So down to earth and generous with his knowledge. I wish I could be more into ‘the tache’ just so I could learn more from him, but as a 30 something woman that would just be weird!

Chris R Jensen

Though this now has been up for awhile and my post is a little late – I just had to express my excitement. This is a very inspiring podcast. I always download them and convert them to Itunes so I can listen to them while going to work – and I really enjoy it. The bad thing is – I cant write stuff down while driving.
Perrin – great work – I really liked listening to it all! And very inspirational too – who knew that growing a mustache could turn into a business 🙂

Spencer Haws

Why not download directly from itunes or subscribe on itunes? My save you some work…

John J. ZIemba


Great job for a newbie podcaster! Douglas Smythe was very engaging and you controlled the flow of the podcast very well. I was impressed.

Once again you reveal a bit more of the emerging leader you are. Spencer was smart to add you to his team.

i learned a lot that I’ll incorporate into my own site, which is growing, thanks to me following all the tips you and Spencer provide,


Thank you for Sharing this podcast Perrin. Great job !

Sue Photo

Great interview I really liked the social media tips, tricks and techniques. One thing that really interested me was the tool that Douglas described as a social media aggregator called ‘Zeight’ or ‘Zight,’ (that finds articles for your niche based on specific search terms), that you could then repost onto FB. This sounds perfect for me. However I’ve searched it up and I can’t find it! Could anyone point me in the right direction for this super useful tool?

Many Thanks


Douglas Smythe

@Sue it’s ZIte! Clearly Zite is not up on their mispell tags! Hope this helps and feel free to email me personally w/ any other questions if they arise!

Sue Photo

Thanks Douglas, I’ve got it on my phone now!

Douglas Smythe

Excellent! You are going to love it and get a lot out of it!

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