Podcasting is fun, but let’s be real—it takes a lot of time and effort to put each episode together. With a podcast sponsorship, you could offset some of the cost of your labor of love. And with persistence, you could even grow your podcast sponsorships into a sizable income stream.
Need help finding sponsors for your podcast? We’ve got you. We’ve outlined how to find sponsors for your podcast, as well as each type of revenue model you’ll come across when you search for sponsors.
How to Find Sponsors for Your Podcast
By Reaching Out to Brands Directly
If you want a specific brand to sponsor you, you can try to reach out to them directly. You can do this by sending a pitch email or direct message. In your pitch, be sure to explain:
- What your podcast is about
- Who your audience is, and how your audience aligns with that of the brand’s
- Your experience with the brand’s products or services
- Examples of previous mentions or posts about the brand (if you have any)
- Why advertising on your podcast would be beneficial for the brand
Finding brand contact information isn’t always easy, but you can try looking in the following places:
- On their website. You may be able to find a contact email or form on the “About” or “Contact Us” pages.
- On their Instagram account. Brands may have a contact email attached to the “Email” button on their Instagram profile. If not, you can try sending them a direct message politely asking for the best email to send sponsorship pitches.
- On LinkedIn. Some companies have dedicated employees or teams that handle influencer partnerships, which podcasts would fall under. Do some digging on LinkedIn to see if you can find anyone with the titles “Influencer Manager” or “Partnerships Manager” at the brand you’re looking to work with, and contact them directly.
Podcast Advertising Marketplaces
Podcast advertising marketplaces are a great avenue to find sponsors no matter how big (or small) your podcast is. These marketplaces connect podcasters to brands who are specifically looking to advertise on a show.
Some reputable marketplaces to explore are:
Keep in mind that the partnerships you find on advertising marketplaces may follow different revenue models. Some marketplaces only have CPM deals, some only have affiliate deals, and some have a combination of both.
If you’re a newer or smaller podcast, it’s most likely going to be easier for you to land affiliate sponsorships than other types of deals. That’s because affiliate partnerships are commission-based, and don’t require brands to pay you up front. For that reason, we recommend only agreeing to affiliate partnerships for brands you really love and stand by.
One of the main benefits of joining a podcast network is so that they can connect you to sponsorship opportunities. Most networks will take a percentage of each sponsorship deal that they help you get.
Getting sponsorships through a network is typically only attainable for mid-to-large sized podcasts (>5,000 monthly downloads).
By Applying for Affiliate Partnerships
Some brands have affiliate programs that anyone (influencers, podcasters, etc.) can apply to. For affiliate partnerships, there is usually no strict download or listenership requirements, although some may ask you to input your social media handles.
Some popular affiliate platforms for podcasters include:
Podcast Sponsorship Revenue Models
There are three main revenue models for podcast sponsorship, which are as follows.
Cost Per Mille (CPM)
Cost per mille, or CRM, means you’ll get paid from your sponsor for every 1,000 downloads your podcast receives.
For example, if you charge $35 per 1,000 downloads, and your podcast episode is downloaded 50,000 times, you’d earn $1,750 from your sponsorship.
Standard rates for CPM models range from $10–$50. This model works best if you have a large (> 1,000), consistent listener base for each episode. Smaller podcasts are better suited for affiliate commissions or value-based sponsorships.
Affiliate partnerships are commission-based, meaning you’ll earn money each time someone buys the item through the link or discount code you provide. If you have a highly engaged audience that tends to listen to your recommendations, this model can be very lucrative.
If your audience isn’t the type to buy items quickly or in large quantities, however, this model probably won’t be the best fit.
With a value-based model, you set your rates based on what you think your audience is worth, plus the cost of labor. You then negotiate directly with your sponsor on the final rate.
For example, you may value your audience at $200, and the cost of working a sponsor into your script and editing your podcast to be $100, for a total rate of $300. You would then pitch this rate to a sponsor, and they will either agree to meet your terms or negotiate with you further.
How Much Money Can I Make From Podcast Sponsorships?
It varies. The answer depends on how many listeners you have, how engaged your audience is, and how many partnerships you have going at a given time.
For example, if you have one CPM deal for each episode of your podcast, and you get 10,000 downloads per episode on average, you can expect to earn $100 to $5,000 per episode. If you had other deals in play in this scenario, that figure would be higher.
The amount you earn from sponsorships can also be influenced by the amount of followers you have on social media. If you have an affiliate partnership, for instance, you can earn more commissions by sharing your exclusive link or code with your followers on social media. Headliner’s social media marketing tools can help you take your podcast’s social profiles to the next level to boost your following, engagement, and hopefully, revenue.