We have witnessed many big celebrities running podcasts that, of course, we have become addicted to. Some of my best celebrity podcasts shows are “The Big Podcast with Shaq” by Shaq O’Neal, “Amy Schumer Presents 3 Girls, I Keith” by Amy Schumer, and “Pretty Big Deal with Ashley Graham” by Ashley Graham. Wonder why all the big Hollywood names manage dedicated podcasts? Because they are reaping big from the gig! You, too, can monetize your podcast, whether you are just starting or have a large house. Wondering how? Worry no more. We are here to explain how you get started and the 15 different ways of earning from doing what you love most.
Affiliate marketing, also known as performance marketing, is when you get a commission from companies that you refer your show listeners company products or services. Affiliate marketing is one of the most popular ways of monetizing your podcast. 81% of brands and 84% of publishers leverage the power of affiliate marketing, a statistic that is expected to increase to $6.8 billion in 2020. You simply search for a product you love and promote it in your show and earn a commission for each sale you make. You can promote a product by creating an “ad” spot in your website, or mention it in the course of your episodes.
But how do you get paid as an affiliate marketer, you may ask? There are three main methods you get compensation, which are;
- Pay per Sale
This is the standard affiliate marketing structure. The merchant pays you a percentage of the product sales that result from your referral.
- Pay Per Lead
You get paid based on the conversion of lead, which could be filling out a contact form, signing up for a trial of a product, subscribing to a newsletter, or downloading files.
- Pay Per Click
You get paid based on the increase in web traffic.
Relatively, you must implement affiliate marketing strategies that will be successful. Here are useful tips;
- Strive to meet the audience of your listeners. Always promote a product or service that your audience needs or desires because it increases the desired conversion rate, and consequently, increases your revenue.
- Become an ambassador of the products and services that you are marketing, where you help your listeners decide the value of the product or service by explaining its value and how to use it.
- Track each podcast’s earnings separately to see which ‘brand’ marketing is generating what percentage of your income to specialize in it in the future.
- Be patient. Affiliate marketing is a slow build, and every affiliate promotion is capable of increasing your income exponentially.
- You earn a passive income
- It requires no customer support and customer satisfaction as that is the work of the product or service seller
- It is convenient and flexible as you conduct affiliate marketing as you podcast
- It is a performance-based reward, meaning you can get as much as your hard work
- You cannot control your competition, especially when you have few listeners
- You cannot establish your customer base because it is highly unlikely to get a repeat customer
- Revenue is not guaranteed as you have to fulfill your end of the bargain (pay per sale, pay per lead, and pay per click).
Sponsors & Advertising
Sponsorship is the most traditional method of monetization in podcast monetization. Sponsorship advertising is the financial or in-kind support of activities. A company sponsors your podcast or one of the episodes to have their product or service promoted. You can generate thousands of dollars each month by sponsorship advertising in your podcast. There is no one-size-fits-all sponsorship advertising owing to many variables. The CPM model measures advertising based on the number of your listeners. For example, with cost per impression (CPM) model, you will earn;
- $18 per 1, 000 downloads for a 15-second pre-roll
- $25 PER 1, 000 downloads for a 60-second mid-roll slot
- $54 for a 15-second pre-roll per 1,000 downloads, and
- $75 for a 15-second mid-roll slot per 1, 000 downloads
Are your listeners below 1000? do not worry. You can still monetize your podcast with sponsorship advertising. You decide you cost per episode or per show. For example, you can determine $150 as the sponsorship cost per episode.
Finally, you can determine your sponsorship revenue by using the cost per acquisition (CPA) model, which is most appropriate with niche podcasts that have a small but dedicated audience. The CPA industry standards are $15-30 per person that buys the product or service.
You must sponsor before you monetize your podcast through sponsorship advertising. You can find sponsors from podcast networks, podcast hosting services, outside ad networks, searching for advertisers on your own, and waiting for sponsors to approach you. Pitches, slide decks, podcast demos, media kits, and follow-ups are some of the techniques to use to find podcast sponsors.
- It provides high rates of income
- It increases your credibility as a brand ambassador when you work with big brands
- Its increases your audience
- It is difficult to find sponsors, especially when you are starting
- It is cold advertising
Courses are a great way of monetizing your podcast. Basically, to create online programs to teach subscribers about skills they benefit from after completing their courses. For example, you teach your audience “how to start a podcast” and “how to monetize your podcast.” The courses can be in the video, audio, or a written form, which you create with course platforms such as Teachable and Thinkific. But how do you price your courses to monetize your show? Here are a few tips;
- Give out your courses for free if you want to reach the highest number of people and generates leads for a greater audience
- Price your courses low enough (usually $30) to make it affordable your prospects if your goal is making the highest number of sales
- If you want to earn the highest total revenue, price your courses high. As such, you will hit your income targets with only a few course purchases.
- Provides a guaranteed income with every purchase
- Allow you increased engagement with your audience, which promotes rapport and consequently, the credibility of your expertise
- People will not buy your courses right away. You have to build your credibility first
You can monetize your podcast by selling services to your listeners and guests that tie in with the contents of your show. For example, you can sell your chef services to your listeners if you run a cooking show at a customized price for each client. Platforms such as Clarity.fm or Premium. Chat helps you sell your services. Tools such as Calendly will facilitate direct-booking of your services.
Similarly, you can sell your services to guests because they are capable client prospects. For example, you can request your guest to include you in his motivational seminars if he is a motivational speaker.
- It is a reliable strategy of monetizing your podcast
- It helps you build your audience
- It is a slow build as your listeners have to trust your credibility and expertise before paying for the services
Coaching & Consulting
Coaching and consulting is a podcast monetization process where you help or guide your subscribers on how to improve on a skill. For example, a podcast on healthy eating can coach subscribers on how to plan weekly meals or the go-to cheat meals. You can also monetize your podcast by offering personal coaching, where interested listeners should pay a set price to get your help.
Note, it is advisable to offer to coach and consulting services of skills that you have expertise in.
- Monetizing your podcast through coaching and consulting is easy because you just need a landing page on your website with a widget form for people to sign
- You must have expertise in a chosen niche
Crowdfunding & Donations
The simplest way to monetize your podcast is by asking your listeners for money to facilitate the continued production of the show. You must, however, keep your calls to action authentic to avoid feeling slimy about asking for donations. You can add a PayPal button or open a Stripe account and add a donation form on your site. Also, you can set up a GoFundMe campaign for a simple collection of your donations.
- It is easy to set up and promote\
- Donations are an unreliable monetization process as donation requests lead to donor fatigue
- You must have a robust and engaged audience for you to make profits with donations
I believe that donations are inappropriate in some podcasts, primarily when you can monetize your podcasts in other ways.
Premium podcast subscriptions are the contents of your show that you sell to your listeners regularly. Additional interviews, behind the scenes content, Ad-free RSS feed, Early-access RSS feed, and Q&A with hosts are great examples of premium content. Premium Content is an honest and effective way of monetizing your podcast.
- It is easier to sell premium content to your sellers because you understand their needs and desires
- It is a reliable source of income
- It is an efficient way for you to customize your revenue
- You must offer compelling and affordable premium content to enhance promotions
Hosting events is an excellent way of monetizing your podcast. You generate revenue by charging an attendance fee. You must organize that align with your podcast consumers to ensure its success. For example, conferences and workshops work best with B2B audiences, whereas live recordings of a podcast episode fit for B2C tactics.
- Events earn your podcast a strong ROI when successful
- Events attract high-priced sponsorships
- Events require a lot of expertise and planning to make them successful
- Events take time to convert into revenue