Madison Catania

Co-Founder of Wildcast

Madison is the Co-Founder and CEO of Wildcast, a patent-pending podcast and guest networking platform that soft-launched in September 2020 as a streamlined way for those in the podcast industry to connect and collaborate. Prior to Co-Founding Wildcast, Madison led production at a podcast network, primarily producing top-charting pop culture and comedy podcasts, while working toward her MBA at the Rady School of Management in San Diego, California.

Throughout her career in Marketing and Management in industries ranging from hospitality to tech to entertainment, Madison has always had a passion for storytelling as a way to form connections. Naturally, she became a huge fan of podcasts early on. The branding and theme behind Wildcast is inspired by telling stories around a campfire, sharing experiences, and meeting new people. She continues learning from others’ stories on podcasts daily.

Where did the idea for Wildcast come from?

During my time as a podcast producer, a significant part of my week was spent either booking talent for our shows or booking our shows’ hosts on other podcasts as a means of promotion. The process was tedious and pretty much a headache. There are new podcast concepts coming to life daily and an endless list of guests to share their stories. I was looking for a streamlined way to handle the guest and podcast discovery and booking processes, similar to how LinkedIn made the job search process much more effective for everyone involved. I couldn’t find what I was looking for!

What does your typical day look like and how do you make it productive?

I’m big on routine, including getting in bed and waking up around the same time daily. I like to carve out times throughout the day, depending on what needs to be done, for “doing” versus “maintaining” – “doing” meaning creating new content, strategizing, and networking, and “maintaining” meaning responding to emails, knocking out development and marketing update meetings, and looking at what others are doing in the industry and beyond. I’m big on taking time in the middle of the day if I can to go on a walk or do a quick workout.

How do you bring ideas to life?

The first thing I do is call on people whose opinions I respect to get their thoughts. The more diverse the people I can speak to, the better. It’s pretty clear to me when something is special based on the excitement of others and often, those around me will ask questions that further my idea or end it altogether.

What’s one trend that excites you?

Obviously, this year has impacted many in negative ways but one thing that I am excited about is the opportunity for more people to work remotely. I’ve been working remotely for a few years and cannot imagine going back to an office full time. I think it’s so much easier to balance work and life when you have no commute and can choose where to spend your time, even during the workday.

What is one habit of yours that makes you more productive as an entrepreneur?

I sign up for a LOT of newsletters – newsletters on actual news, on the podcast industry, marketing in general, trends, and pretty much anything I see that could be relevant. I think to be as effective as possible, you need to understand the larger context of what you’re trying to do, and newsletters have really helped me do that.

What advice would you give your younger self?

Some people have a clear idea of what success means. They’re not right and they’re not wrong. There’s no correct path so just do what feels best to you.

Tell us something that’s true that almost nobody agrees with you on.

Going to bed angry or upset is completely fine and often a good idea rather than a bad one if you’re struggling with something. Sleep helps… a lot!

As an entrepreneur, what is the one thing you do over and over and recommend everyone else do?

I ask myself a lot of questions. Sometimes, if I’m struggling with something, I try to ask myself questions to get to the best- and worst-case scenarios. Usually, neither is as good or bad as you think.

What is one strategy that has helped you grow your business?

I’ve asked others for feedback and advice even when I wasn’t completely comfortable doing so. So often, people will surprise you with their willingness to help you grow and succeed.

What is one failure you had as an entrepreneur, and how did you overcome it?

Nearly every day, I have people tell me that my platform isn’t right for them whether that’s for an investment or simply for them to join. At first, the “no’s” stung, but as an entrepreneur, you have to have thick skin and that definitely comes with time.

What is one business idea that you’re willing to give away to our readers?

There’s a joke in “The Office” about giving a gift basket full of cash. I actually think giving cash in a beautiful way is a great idea – there is such a stigma with checks and gift cards. Why not make cash beautiful? Everyone wants cash. Also, if anyone wants to pursue this, I have some thoughts on branding…

What is the best $100 you recently spent? What and why?

It’s cliché but I’m always happiest when I spend money on experiences. Two of my favorite experiences are reading new books and finding new camping spots for a weekend getaway.

What is one piece of software or a web service that helps you be productive?

I’ve used Canva for maybe a decade now to create social media assets, build presentations, find inspiration, and just to generally create! I tend to spend time on Canva daily and am a huge advocate for any sized business to explore the platform.

What is the one book that you recommend our community should read and why?

Daring Greatly by Brené Brown. The topics she researches provide so much insight into the world around us, business and otherwise.

What is your favorite quote?

It changes all the time but one that I’ve loved lately is by Glennon Doyle: “Being human is not hard because you’re doing it wrong, it’s hard because you’re doing it right.” The same can be said for business.

Key Learnings:

  • Notice business opportunities around you
  • Don’t be afraid to be uncomfortable
  • Experiences over things
  • Struggling is part of the journey