The Smoke Show: A BBQ Podcast Part Three!
I’m finally back! Thanks for all your patience in the part coming out! I’d been putting it off for a while, as you could tell. We’re here with the final installment of the project for The Smoke Show, the part where you make money.
To forewarn you, most podcasts won’t see a penny. These tips I’m offering are platforms that will help you with monetization, building an audience to monetize is up to you.
The top way I’ve found that people attempt to earn money from their audience is by creating a Patreon. Patreon is a crowdsourcing platform that allows your fans to pay what they want to support you. I use this platform to help curate content for my podcast, Real Nerd Hours.
Patreon allows you to gate content behind specific dollar amounts. For example, you could put audio episodes behind a $3 paywall and video episodes behind a $5 threshold. The price of your content is completely up to you, which is what makes Patreon beautiful. Of course, Patreon gets a cut of what you make – they have to get paid too after all.
The features are pretty sweet as well. The platform allows for automatic billing on a per project or monthly basis. You can offer perks for sites like WordPress and Discord through plugins or native support. There are a lot sites that Patreon can connect to that will all you to extend the content available. Scheduling posts is also an amazing tool. I recommend this to rid yourself of a lot of the headache of managing the subscriptions to your content.
Kickstarter’s Drip and Liberpay are two alternatives to Patreon. They offer similar structure with a few differences. Snowdrift.coop (https://wiki.snowdrift.coop/market-research/other-crowdfunding) offers a pretty thorough look at the different crowdfunding platforms. There are tons of sites out there and it is important to do your research on each of them to find out which is best for your needs. I’ll keep it 1000 with you, I don’t know that there’s a tremendous difference between a lot of these platforms. You might want to go with whatever’s popular or offers you the best rates.
If you want to take the dive, and you have to really want to, there are ways to run a subscription service with PayPal and MailChimp (or other mailing service). There are instructions on how to do so here: (https://nosaj.io./r/replace-patreon)
As a side note: Kickstarter and Indiegogo are two major platforms for crowdfunding a single project. If you want to do a drive for specific gear or for merchandise for your show, these sites are great to be able to gauge interest in a particular product you’re developing with no upfront risk to you, the creator.
Minor Ways to Fund Your Show
Unless your show is gigantic hit, selling ads isn’t going to do much for. Few companies inside or outside of your niche are going to be willing to advertise on your show if your reach isn’t large enough. With that said, it might be worth asking small companies in your niche about sponsoring an episode or two. I have only had one experience with having a sponsored episode and in return for one ad, we got free shirts. We managed to land this because our friend’s company was open to providing an ad for the show. The way we worked the deal out was by asking. I can’t promise that this will work every time, but it’s always worth asking, even if the people aren’t your friends.
Affiliate Link Programs
Affiliate programs are a great way to generate “passive” income for your show. Affiliate programs are partnerships with a website to help generate sales through clicks for them. If you’re doing a BBQ show, writing articles for your show’s site with cookware, clothing, or other recommendations can help generate income through the links.
There’s more than one affiliate program to drive sales for sites, but my only experience is with Amazon’s. The major positive about Amazon’s affiliate program is that you have to sign up and the rest is up to you. I’m confident that a lot of other affiliate programs operate in the same way, but it’ll be up to you to research them. Nichehacks.com (https://nichehacks.com/best-affiliate-programs/) has a list of the 21 best programs to check out.
There are a few companies that do printing and fulfillment. Among those are Designed By Humans, Red Bubble, Threadless, or others. A random site, knoji (https://designbyhumans1.knoji.com/alternatives/), that has a list of the choices. This is the easiest way to get merchandise done. Most of these sites are direct-to-garment printers so the quality is a little shaky, but it’s an easy process. Not having to worry about anything other than securing the design is a high-key blessing.
When doing merch on your own, you have to keep track of the design, quality control, fulfillment, and post-purchase issues. On top of that, you have to concern yourself with getting a website, setting up the shop, finding a CRM, shipping, and so on.
There are definitely efficient ways to run the merch for your show. I’d recommend doing limited runs as well as pre-orders to get a hang of the process. A limited run allows you to manage a smaller number of orders. It also eliminates the expectation of a restock. Pre-orders allow you to get the bulk of your order information processed for the day of released. These steps allow you to take it as slow as you want to at the start.
Thanks for checking out this series on how to create a podcast. The series intends to be a primer for anyone who wants to start their own. I wanted to explain how I would plan an episode. I hope that the tips in this series help you find your way during the process. You don’t have to incorporate any of the ideas presented here. They may help you if you do.
We’ll embark on another project sooner or later! I hope it will be a more advanced topic than this. I hope this helps!
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