Podcasting is one of the best marketing tools to power your brand in this modern digital age. This platform has grown tremendously as more and more people have recognized the value of recurring audio content.
Many organizations have taken advantage of the rise of the podcast and many are taking it to the next level with live stream podcasting.
Producing a live stream podcast takes real work and if you want to keep your show running successfully, you need to find ways to make it work for you as well in terms of generating revenue.
But the truth is that most live podcasts don’t make any money at all and it will take some time for you to see a significant difference in revenue generation.
Monetizing your live stream podcast- Real ways to make money from your show
Most creators live stream their podcasts for benefits like building relationships and authority. While it’s true, a live podcast can certainly do more.
The ad market for live stream podcasts generated around $220 million in 2017. Podcasting can bring you a significant amount of money, but it would take a little time to get you there.
Some techniques work well when you are just getting started, but others work great when you are more established with a larger audience base. Either way, you can find more than a single way to make money with live stream podcasting no matter what stage you are at.
Here are some of the real ways to make money from your live podcasts.
1. Ask for donations
The simplest way to make money from your live podcasts is to ask your listeners for donations. Plenty of followers would be happy to donate a few dollars to you, provided that they are interested in your shows. This is one of the easiest monetization solutions as it is easy to set up and promote.
For example, you can add a PayPal button or add a donation form to your website. Alternatively, you can also set up a campaign for a simple donation collection page.
To avoid feeling easy about this type of promotion, make sure your call to action is real and authentic. Tell your listeners why you are asking for donations. Is it to create your new shows or to support some other cause?
Tell your listeners about your goals. If your fans understand where the money is going, they would be more willing to donate.
2. Affiliate marketing
Affiliate marketing is a monetization strategy where you earn commissions when you refer to other businesses in your podcast. And when someone completes an action following your recommendation, you earn money.
For example, when a user makes a purchase you typically earn a commission for the same. Affiliate marketing works when you recommend products or services that you commonly use so that you can authentically promote them.
You can naturally include a mention of the product as you deliver your regular show or create an ad spot to promote products if you don’t have the audience size for traditional affiliate marketing.
There are many different affiliate programs for each type of product and service with Amazon at the forefront.
3. Advertising and sponsorships
Advertising and sponsorships are another effective monetization technique that works great. While it is one of the common ways to make money, it is also one of the toughest ways if you don’t have a large number of listeners.
If you are looking for ways to make money from advertising and sponsorships, you can join different podcast ad networks to get in touch with sponsors.
To start earning a decent amount of revenue, you need to have a bigger audience of at least 5k-10k consistent listeners every month.
You have to set up a deal with sponsors that works for you and your sponsors alike. The money you can earn from sponsorship depends on the listener base you have. The more listeners you have, the more money you can make from sponsorships and advertising.
When it comes to advertising, you can charge for pre-roll, mid-roll, or post-roll mentions during your podcasts. You can join advertising networks that act as a third-party link between you and sponsors.
When you get sponsors through these networks, they will take a share from the ad placements in your show so you need to choose the networks accordingly.
4. Sell premium live episodes
If you have a consistent user base who likes to listen to your live stream podcasts, most of them would be willing to pay to listen to your episodes. All you have to do is to create special shows that are available for premium purchases.
When you decide to sell premium episodes, you need to make sure you follow a unique approach. Besides selling single episodes, you can also sell membership where your subscribers can access your live podcasts for $10/month.
A smart way to sell premium live podcasts is to record it while you record your normal shows. For example, if you are inviting a special guest on your show, record a half an hour session and add an extra 10 minutes to sell as a bonus.
The key to success is to make that extra 10 minutes extra special and compelling. Another tip would be to make sure your free stuff is informative as well. You don’t want your listeners to assume that you only provide good content in your paid version.
5. Sell repurposed live shows
Another great way to make money with your live stream podcasts is to master how to set up live streaming podcasts by repurposing your old content to new sellable content. This not only reduces the time you would make a new episode; it also improves the overall efficiency.
Take a few of your best live episodes that are in the same category and add more value to areas where you can and pack them together as a new show.
If this monetization strategy works great, invest more money to create a more professional format that appeals to your followers.
6. Try selling physical products
When your fans love your podcasts, they might be willing to buy merchandise that represents your shows.
For example, if you have built a brand around your live stream podcasts, you could consider selling mugs, t-shirts, bags, or absolutely anything that connects your listeners with the show outside of your episodes.
To make it work for you, display your podcast’s name, a popular phrase, or anything that would delight your fans.
Considering easy ways to run an e-commerce store like drop shipping, you don’t need to have to handle products on your own.
7. Sell e-courses
If you are running an informational or educational show that allows listeners to learn a new skill, consider creating standalone courses to make extra money. To create an e-course, you can use your website or host it on any third-party platforms like Udemy or Skillshare.
It is recommended to start creating your courses on popular third-party platforms as you will get more exposure and will be able to establish your brand. If your e-course turns out to be a lucrative source of revenue generation, then bring it to your website.
8. Sell content upgrades
Another smart way to monetize your live stream podcasts is to add a downloadable resource with each episode. To make this technique effective, make sure the downloadable resource relates to the episode you stream in some or the other way. This is not just selling another product but is a content upgrade as it upgrades the listener’s experience.
For example, if you are hosting a fitness podcast, at the end of the show, tell your followers to visit your website and buy the map of the best fitness centers in your location.
To sell a content upgrade in your live streaming podcasts, you need to integrate a payment form to your website where your users can download the form and make the payment. The best spot to place the form is where you put your live podcast links or audio player.
If you are selling content upgrades to make money from your live podcasts, you can also add an online shopping cart to your website so that you can list your upgrades individually. This makes it easy for your followers to browse all the content upgrades in a single place rather than going through every post.
9. Host an event
While this is an indirect podcast monetization technique, it still works if you have a local following. If your audience won’t mind traveling to watch you, host an event and sell tickets for the same. To choose the type of event you want to host, you need to consider the topic of your podcasts and the audience type.
Based on the data, you can host an event to teach your users a skill, run a workshop, or simply host a group discussion. While having many benefits, this is a challenging way to make money by hosting events. It is recommended to hold on to this strategy until you have a consistent fan base.
Your event need not have thousands of participants to make money, but you do need some people to attend your event. If you are considering conducting events, analyze the location of your listeners. You can get the data to form geographical reports to find out whether you have a devoted audience from similar locations.
10. Effective tips to make money from live podcasts
The demand for live podcasts is increasing and is a great opportunity to grow and build an audience and make money from it. However, the market is getting more crowded with advancements in modern technology. \
So, you need to follow best practices to get it right so that you can turn your efforts into revenue effectively.
11. Select specific topics for your live shows
When choosing a topic for your live stream podcasts, choose the one with a mass-market or a niche audience. When it comes to the type of market, there are advantages and disadvantages to both.
When starting your podcasting the first time, it is recommended to target a niche market so that you can always grow the scope of the podcast to reach a broad audience.
12. Devote yourself to make the best content
This tip is a no brainer. The greater your podcast is; the more followers you will get. Even if you have a smaller audience, take the time to make quality content and consistent delivery of your episodes. That is why it is important to learn how to set up live streaming.
To make the best live streaming podcast possible, you need to have a good podcasting setup and focus on building and engaging a community.
13. Experiment with different monetization strategies
Besides the monetization strategies we discussed, there are plenty of them. Among these countless methods, there is no one best way to do it. That is why you need to experiment with different revenue generation techniques if you really want to succeed.
The trick is to monetize your live shows in a way that doesn’t disappoint your listeners. In most cases, using a combination of multiple techniques works rather than relying on one strategy.
While live stream podcasts are a lucrative source of revenue, running shows solely to make money is not a great idea. Make sure you start a live podcast because you want to share your brand voice with the world, not because you want to make money quickly. The foundation of making money with live stream podcasts is having a consistent follower base.
To make a steady income from your shows, you need to have good content for your podcasts so that people will follow. Loyal followers will be happy to support you want to make money from your live podcasts.
As a best practice, it is recommended to start thinking about monetization even before you publish your first episode.
If you are yet to begin your live podcast, make sure you consider the topic, style, and content format of your show as these aspects play an important role to support your future monetization strategies.
There is no hard and fast rule for success. Only consistency and longevity can help you make a good amount of money by live stream podcasting.
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Amanda Smith is a marketing consultant at StreamHash, a company with expertise in providing live video streaming software suited for video on demand portals and business solutions. She is interested in marketing communications and like to keep abreast of new trends and developments.