The amount of money that a podcaster can make will vary greatly depending on factors such as the size of their audience, the niche of their podcast, and the methods they use to monetize their content. The current range is between 30 million dollars and $0.
Podcasters can make money through various methods, such as advertising, sponsorships, and merchandise sales.
Some successful podcasters can make a full-time income or more from their show, while others may only earn a small amount of extra income.
The vast majority of podcasters don't make any money. Additionally, the vast majority of shows stop before they ever see success with growth. Successful podcasts that grow a following and are consistent can see massive amounts of money.
The main factors to being successful in making money with your podcast are:
Audience Size/Number of Podcast Listeners
These three factors will drastically determine how much you can make on a podcast. All three of these will also effect your monthly downloads witch is what many advertising companies ask for.
Many podcasters choose to monetize their shows through a combination of methods rather than relying on a single source of revenue. The full list of how to make money on your podcast is below.
Can You Make Good Money as a Successful Podcaster?
Yes, a successful podcaster can make good money from their podcast. The amount of money that can be earned will depend on several factors, such as the size of their audience, the niche of their podcast, and the methods they use to monetize their content. Some successful podcasters can make a full-time income from their show, while others may only earn a small amount of extra income.
It's worth noting that the podcasting industry is becoming increasingly competitive and saturated, making it harder for new podcasters to gain a significant audience, but with a large and loyal following, a podcaster can potentially earn significant income from advertising, sponsorships, and merchandise sales.
A good rule of thumb is to think about how successful some of the best podcasts are. Currently, Joe Rogan makes around 30 million dollars a year on his podcast and made a deal with Spotify for 100 million dollars. While the 100 million dollars was a one-off payment, there are tons of ways to make money and tons of money to be earned.
Your podcast niche plays a massive part of how much money you can make from each avenue. Topics such as passive income, money, and finance are among the highest-paying niches to be a part of.
There are also tons of podcasts that may not make much money on the podcast but money outside the podcast, such as offering services, coaching, or speaking at live events.
The full list of ways to make money is listed below.
What Are The Income Sources for podcasters to make money?
Advertising and Sponsorships
Podcasting Sponsorships are the most common method for making money among shows. Typically this is when a brand or company will pay for advertising space on your show. In many cases, this is usually at the beginning, middle, or end of a podcast.
Podcasters can make money through advertising and podcast sponsorships by working with businesses or brands that want to promote their products or services to the podcast audience.
Advertising: Podcasters can sell advertising space to businesses or brands during their episodes. They can do this by working with advertising networks such as AdvertiseCast, or Podcorn, which connect podcasters with advertisers. The podcaster will typically receive a payment for each advertisement that is played during their episode.
Sponsorships: Podcasters can also secure sponsorship deals with companies or brands. A sponsorship typically involves the sponsor providing the podcaster with a fee or compensation in exchange for promoting their product or service during the podcast episode.
In both cases, the amount of money that a podcaster can make will depend on factors such as the size of their audience, the niche of their podcast, the length of the advertisement or sponsorship, and the type of product or service being advertised or sponsored.
Typically the more money you will make is directly related to how many loyal listeners you have. If you're one of their favorite podcasts and they tune in each week, you'll make a lot of podcast revenue.
A solid podcast sponsorship is a great way to kickstart the success of your show and bring in money to help increase the number of new episodes you can make and build a better show.
It's important to note that the FTC (Federal Trade Commission) rules for advertising and endorsements apply to podcasts like TV and radio. So, Podcasters should disclose any sponsorships or advertisements on their podcast to avoid legal issues.
This is massively popular, and some creators don't mention it's a paid promotion but more of a review or a mention.
Think of this as a podcast host who may have gotten a special deal from a microphone company such as Shure. If Shure gave them a free microphone and money to make sure they mention the product a few times, this is an easy way to get paid through paid content and promotion.
The podcast host can mention it in the passing of a conversation or say that the podcast is recorded on a Shure SM7B. They can say the microphones were provided by Shure and can go as in-depth as they would like. This is very popular on YouTube, where companies pay creators to use their products and mention them when they feel they are necessary.
While this should be disclosed, many creators neglect to mention free or paid products if it's not in the form of sponsorship or podcast advertising.
Podcasts can make money through Premium or Exclusive Content by offering additional, subscriber-only episodes or content that is not available to non-paying listeners.
This can include bonus episodes, early access to episodes, ad-free episodes, or additional behind-the-scenes content. Podcasters can also offer subscriber-only live events, Q&A sessions, or merchandise. They can use various platforms to offer premium content, such as Patreon, Substack, and Glow.
Additionally, they can also offer paid memberships, subscriptions, and sponsorships.
This is one of a few monetization methods in that the audience can directly support creators. While this is usually not a massive percentage of income for podcasters, it's the most reliable and is a great foundation for future success. It's also an easy and predictable way to increase the show's overall annual income.
Podcasts can make money through affiliate marketing by promoting products or services on their show and including an affiliate link for listeners to purchase the product or service.
When a listener clicks on the affiliate link and makes a purchase, the podcast host earns a commission on the sale. This can be done through verbal mentions, banner advertisements, or specific calls to action within the podcast. For example, an affiliate link may look like this. The Shure SM7b is the greatest podcast microphone ever made. By clicking that link and buying something on amazon, I will receive a commission for this.
This is very popular with Joe Rogan's Podcast. He usually mentions a website and then forward slash JRE, where if someone buys, he gets credit for it.
This is also very popular when you mention something on the show, like a product, and leave a link in the description. Affiliate sales are an easy way to increase the number of revenue streams a show may have because it doesn't require the podcast to create or hold products.
Podcasts can make money by selling complementary products to their niche audience. These products can include merchandise such as t-shirts, hats, or mugs that feature the podcast's logo or branding.
Podcasts can also create and sell their own e-books, PDF Downloads, or courses related to their niche topic. It's also becoming more popular to make money from book sales from the host or hosts of the show.
For example, a podcast about personal finance might create an e-book on budgeting or a course on investing.
Most podcasts have a niche, and many times, there are plenty of complimentary products to follow. While I was researching for the best sailing podcasts to listen to, many companies have their own podcast and mention products they sell that helped them in their stories. The products complement the podcast.
This is one of the most popular monetization methods because it's usually not forced, and it can be digital or physical products for sale.
Coaching & Consulting Work
Podcasts can make money by offering coaching and consulting work, promoting their services to their listeners, and using their platform to build a personal brand and establish themselves as experts in their field.
They can also use their podcast to network and connect with potential clients. This is a common process where the podcast is the leverage to get in front of ideal clients and speak to them about what they do and how you may be able to help. This usually is offered as coaching and consulting work.
Coaching and consulting services are popular among shows like GaryVee's and Grant Cardone, where he and his team can dive deeply into someone's business and help them with their marketing or sales. Interviewing their target audience, it allows them to get in front of decision-makers and have conversations that may lead to a sale.
Collaborating With Other Creators
Podcasts can make money by collaborating with other creators in a variety of ways:
Sponsorship: Podcasts can partner with brands and businesses to include sponsored content or advertisements within their episodes.
Cross-promotion: Podcasts can collaborate with other podcasts or creators in their niche to promote each other's content.
Product collaborations: Podcasts can collaborate with other creators to create and sell a product, such as a book, course, or merchandise.
Events: Podcasts can collaborate with other creators to organize and host events, such as live recordings, meetups, or conferences, which can generate ticket sales and sponsorships.
Crowdfunding: Podcasts can collaborate with other creators and leverage the combined audience to run crowdfunding campaigns to support their work.
By collaborating with other creators, podcasts can expand their reach and generate more revenue through shared resources and audiences. Collaborating with others is the easiest way to make money and some hosts may charge money to collaborate depending on the circumstances.
Donations & Crowdfunding
Podcasts can make money through donations and crowdfunding by asking their listeners to support the podcast financially. This is similar to premium or exclusive content, but instead of making content only for financial supporters, listeners can simply give a one-time donation to support the show.
Donations: Podcasts can ask their listeners to make one-time or recurring donations to support the production and operation of the podcast. This can be done through platforms such as PayPal or Patreon.
Crowdfunding: Podcasts can also run crowdfunding campaigns to raise money for specific projects, such as upgrading equipment, hiring additional staff, or creating a live event. Platforms such as Kickstarter, Indiegogo, or GoFundMe can be used for this purpose.
By giving listeners an opportunity to support the podcast financially, they can create a sustainable revenue stream and continue to produce and improve the quality of their content. This could be getting better hardware, such as microphones, or hiring someone to do audio editing. This is very common for YouTube channels and is becoming more popular among podcasts.
Product Sales Physical & Digital
Podcasts can make money through product sales, both physical and digital. Physical products include merchandise such as t-shirts, hats, or mugs that feature the podcast's logo or branding. Podcasts can also create and sell their own physical books or other resources related to their niche topic.
For example, a podcast about home renovation might create a guidebook on DIY projects, or a podcast about cooking might create a cookbook.
Digital products include e-books, courses, and coaching services that can be delivered online. Podcasts can create and sell digital products related to their niche topics, such as a personal finance podcast creating an e-book on budgeting or a podcast about fitness creating an online course on strength training.
Podcasts can use various e-commerce platforms to sell their physical and digital products, such as Shopify, BigCommerce, and WooCommerce. They can also sell their products through their website or social media channels. Most highly successful podcasts offer a physical or digital product for sale. This is usually a popular podcasts easiest way to make money because they can be directly impacted and cut out the middle man of ads or hoping people make donations. customers feel like they get something in return and know their money will support their favorite podcasts.
Podcasts can also create a membership program that offers exclusive content and access to the host or other experts in the field. Some shows offer this but its rarer to see this happen.
Public Speaking Engagements/ Live Events
Public speaking engagements and live events are a natural fit for podcast hosts. Podcast hosts who have built a loyal audience and a strong personal brand can leverage their expertise and reputation to secure paid speaking engagements at conferences, conventions, or other events.
These engagements can include keynote speeches, panel discussions, or workshops.
Podcasts can also host their own live events, such as meetups, Q&A sessions, or workshops. These events can be ticketed, and the podcast can charge for admission. Also, podcasts can sell merchandise, sponsorships, and other products or services at live events allowing them to make even more money podcasting.
Podcasts can also monetize their events through sponsorships, where a brand pays the podcast to promote their products or services at the event or sponsor the event itself. They can also use the event to promote their own products or services and generate additional revenue from merchandise, product sales, or membership sign-ups.
Lastly, Podcasts can also monetize their events through virtual events and webinars; this way, they can reach a larger audience and monetize it through selling tickets and sponsorships.
Banner Ads & Promotions on Your Website
Podcasts can make money through banner ads and promotions on their website. By placing banner ads on their website, podcasts can earn revenue from advertisers who want to reach their audience. These ads can be sold on a cost-per-click (CPC) or cost-per-impression (CPM) basis, which means that the podcast is paid each time a user clicks on the ad or each time the ad is viewed.
Podcasts can also promote products or services on their website and earn a commission on any sales made through affiliate links. For example, a podcast about personal finance might promote a financial planning service on their website and earn a commission for each sale made through a unique affiliate link.
Additionally, Podcasts can also monetize their website through sponsorships. They can sell sponsored posts or sponsored pages, where brands pay to have their content featured on the podcast's website. Podcasts can also sell sponsorships of their show notes, where brands can promote their products or services in the show notes section of the website.
Lastly, Podcasts can also monetize their website by selling their own products or services, such as e-books, courses, coaching or memberships. They can use their website as an e-commerce platform to sell their products and services.
Popular Advertising Networks
Podcasts can make money through popular advertising networks such as Google AdSense, MediaVine, and AdThrive. These networks connect podcasts with advertisers and place ads within their episodes. This is an easy way to make money with podcast advertising because the ads are only on the website and not on the actual show. Its important that if you choose to make money this way you need
Google AdSense is a popular advertising network that allows podcasts to display ads on their website and earn revenue based on the number of clicks or views. Advertisers bid on ad space, and the highest bidder's ad is displayed.
These networks allow podcasts to monetize their episodes with less hassle by providing them with a pool of advertisers to choose from and handling all the ad placement, tracking, and payments. Additionally, these networks often require a certain number of monthly listeners, and the podcast's website must comply with the network's terms of service.
Getting followers and listeners to join your email list will increase the potential to make money in all forms dramatically. The most successful shows have an ever-growing email list allowing them to notify new and existing subscribers about new shows, merchandise, and courses they may be releasing. Converting your shows into a new blog post when you're done recording can also help reach new audiences.
Some of the Highest Earning Podcasts
There is a long list of high earning podcasts. This is a small list of podcasts that are crushing and are among the highest-earning podcasters. There is a clear and reoccurring theme among all the shows as I am sure you will see.
Some of the highest earning podcasts include:
The Joe Rogan Experience: Joe Rogan's podcast is one of the most popular and successful in the world. He earns money through a combination of sponsorships, merchandise sales, and live events.
Crime Junkie: Crime Junkie is a true crime podcast that covers various criminal cases. The podcast is known for its high-quality production and storytelling, which has helped them to attract a large following. They earn money through sponsorships and merchandise sales.
The Dave Ramsey Show: Dave Ramsey's personal finance podcast is one of the most popular and successful in the world. He earns money through sponsorships, merchandise sales, and live events.
The Bill Simmons Podcast: Bill Simmons' podcast is one of the most popular and successful in the world. He earns money through sponsorships, merchandise sales, and live events.
How I Built This: NPR’s How I Built This is a podcast about entrepreneurs, and the stories behind the movements they built. They earn money through sponsorships, merchandise sales, and live events.
The Tim Ferriss Show: Tim Ferriss' podcast is one of the most popular and successful in the world. He earns money through sponsorships, merchandise sales, and live events.
Armchair Expert: The Armchair Expert is a podcast hosted by actor Dax Shepard, where he interviews people from different backgrounds and industries. They earn money through sponsorships, merchandise sales, and live events.
The GaryVee Audio Experience: Gary Vaynerchuk's podcast is focused on business, marketing, and entrepreneurship. He earns money through sponsorships, merchandise sales, and live events.
The School of Greatness: The School of Greatness is a podcast hosted by Lewis Howes, where he interviews successful people from various industries and backgrounds. He earns money through sponsorships, merchandise sales, and live events.
The Tony Robbins Podcast: Tony Robbins' podcast features interviews with successful entrepreneurs, business leaders, and other experts. He earns money through sponsorships, merchandise sales, and live events.
The MFCEO Project: The MFCEO Project is a podcast hosted by Andy Frisella, where he shares his insights on business, marketing, and personal development. He earns money through sponsorships, merchandise sales, and live events.
The Minimalists Podcast: The Minimalists Podcast is hosted by Joshua Fields Millburn & Ryan Nicodemus, they discuss minimalism and share tips on how to live a more meaningful life with less. They earn money through sponsorships, merchandise sales, and live events.
The Rich Roll Podcast: Rich Roll is a podcast hosted by Rich Roll, where he interviews high-performing individuals from various fields, discussing health, wellness, and sustainable living. He earns money through sponsorships, merchandise sales, and live events.
The Nate Berkus Show: Nate Berkus is a podcast hosted by Nate Berkus, where he interviews various celebrities and experts on design, home, and lifestyle. He earns money through sponsorships, merchandise sales, and live events.
It is worth noting that the earnings of podcasts can vary greatly, depending on the podcast's popularity, audience size, and monetization strategies. Furthermore, these are just examples, and the list of highest-earning podcasts may change over time. As you can see, there is clearly a theme that this follows with most podcasts making money through sponsorships, merchandise, and live events. Why? Because all of these people are professional speakers, and it's what they do best!
How Many Listeners Do You Need to Make Money on a Podcast?
The number of listeners needed to make money on a podcast can vary depending on the monetization strategy being used. For example, if a podcast is using advertising as its primary source of income, it may need a larger audience to attract advertisers and generate significant revenue. On the other hand, a podcast that relies on sponsorships or affiliate marketing may be able to generate income with a smaller audience. Additionally, a podcast that sells merchandise or offers paid memberships can also make money with a smaller number of listeners. Ultimately, the key to making money from a podcast is to have a dedicated and engaged audience, regardless of its size. Podcasts that can continue to grow their monthly downloads and regularly get in front of their target audience will see the best monetary growth.
If you're just getting into podcasting, you should consider subscribing to this blog. It pulls back the curtain on everything podcasting. In the beginning, focus on building an amazing show that your listeners love—after that, adding in pre-roll ads and post-roll ads can bring to help you make money. Some shows skyrocket to success, such as Call Her Daddy, and others, like the Joe Rogan Experience, have been creating shows since podcasting originally rolled out. Create valuable content your listener base will love and you're going to be on a fast track to making money with your podcast.