So, you want to start monetizing your podcast, but you think you're not quite ready to go out there and pitch sponsors? We happen to disagree but, we pulled together a few monetization options for you anyways. (These are also a great addition to any sponsorships you might already have running!)
This membership website allows your audience to pledge a certain amount of money per week or per episode. You can start pledges for as little as a dollar a month, and the sky's the limit! There's generally a rewards system in place, where certain tiers of patrons get access to certain perks, whether they're thanked in the episode, sent merch, given early access to episodes, or invited to participate in patron-only events like AMAs. You can also create patron-specific content, like bloopers, bonus episodes, and behind-the-scenes footage.
Podcasting is booming, but it's still not the most accessible field for amateurs to get into. Luckily for you, that means you're in a prime position to leverage your experience and set up an online course to help teach wannabe podcasters the lay of the land! Courses don't have to be live–you can use a service like Thinkific or Skillshare to upload videos and have them accessible for your audience. Podcast creators generally find success in promoting their course in their podcast, as well as creating dedicated Facebook groups for course alumni.
If you think your podcast has to be huge to start doing live events, we're happy to tell you that that's not the case! Live events might sound scary, but they can actually be pretty easy and fun to put on. We like this article from Bello Collective & Join the Party for how to put on a live event without having to fill out a stadium. This is an especially great option for podcasts with a strong local fanbase–or, if not local, at least concentrated in one metropolitan area! Keep your costs low, set a reasonable ticket price (we generally recommend $10-15), and you're well on your way to bringing in some cash!
Affiliate codes are a great way to make passive incomes, and an incredibly wide array of companies offer them. If you find yourself constantly recommending things to your listeners, you should definitely give a cursory Google for "whatever it is + affiliate code" or "referral code." A best practice is to always disclose to your audience that you get a kickback from an affiliate code–there's no shame in using them, but you should be upfront with your audience!
Freelance Editing (and transcribing, and design, and...)
Maybe you were teaching yourself how to edit audio off of hours and hours of YouTube videos, but now you've got it down pat–and it's time to cash in! There are plenty of podcasters out there looking to outsource their editing to podcast creators like you! Same thing goes for any skill you develop through your show–are you a speedy transcriber? a total genius at Facebook ads? a great designer? Let your other podcasters know!