Publishers who’ve already monetized through sponsored articles and videos can explore podcasts as the next format to generate revenue from. There are a few prerequisites that one needs to meet in order to get started with sponsored podcasts. We’ll cover all that and more in this article.
What are Sponsored Podcasts?
Sponsored podcasts are where the content is created and produced by the podcast host or team but is financially supported by a brand or company in exchange for promotional plugs.
Sponsored podcasts are different from podcasts that include advertisements. Usually, advertisement slots in a podcast are offered to the higher bidder for advertisement. Whereas for a sponsored podcast, the topic is picked by/ or discussed with the advertiser so that it aligns with their product/ service. Certain podcasts can also have product experts from the advertiser's domain/ organization as a guest.
Best Practices for Sponsored Podcasts
Publishers doing sponsored posts need to follow certain practices to ensure that their audience is aware and their editorial integrity isn’t hampered. Follow these practices for the best outcome.
- Be transparent: Be clear with your listeners that the podcast is sponsored content. Advertisers appreciate transparency and honesty, and your audience will appreciate knowing that you are upfront with them.
- Choose sponsors that align with your audience: Be selective about which sponsors you choose to work with. Choosing those that align with your podcast's audience will ensure that the content is relevant and engaging to your listeners.
- Integrate the sponsor's message seamlessly: Integrate the sponsor's message naturally into the podcast, so it doesn't feel like a commercial break. This could be done through an organic conversation, an interview with a representative from the sponsor, or a segment that ties into the sponsor's product or service.
- Ensure high production value: Make sure that the sponsored podcast episode has the same high production value as your regular episodes. This will ensure that the listener's experience is consistent and that the sponsor's message is delivered in a positive and professional way.
- Measure and report: Provide advertisers with clear and measurable data to demonstrate the success of their sponsorship. This could include download numbers, listener demographics, and engagement metrics.
- Follow advertising regulations: Ensure that your sponsored podcasts comply with advertising regulations, such as disclosure requirements, to avoid any legal issues. This ensures complete transparency and editorial integrity is maintained. This also ensures that you maintain your audiences’ trust that you’ve earned over time.
- While doing a sponsored podcast, avoid comparisons with your advertisers’ competition. Unfiltered honest opinion is acceptable but back it up with data. Without this, the podcast might seem biased.
Minimum Requirements for a Sponsored Podcast
Sponsored podcasts can be done by anyone, but there are certain factors that advertisers consider before approaching a publisher.
- Established podcast with a dedicated following: Publishers should have an established podcast with a dedicated listenership before offering sponsored podcasts. Advertisers want to reach a specific audience, and they are more likely to pay for podcast sponsorship if they know that there is an engaged audience that will hear their message.
- Quality production: The podcast should have high-quality production values, including good sound quality, engaging content, and professional editing. Advertisers want their message to be delivered in a way that reflects positively on their brand, so the podcast must be well-produced.
- Targeted audience: Publishers should have a clear understanding of their podcast's audience and be able to demonstrate that their listenership aligns with the advertiser's target market.
- Compliance with advertising regulations: Publishers must ensure that their sponsored podcasts comply with advertising regulations, such as disclosure requirements, to avoid legal issues.
Sponsored podcasts have good revenue potential and aren’t as resource-intensive as sponsored videos. Publishers can offer multiple formats to the advertiser at the same time to generate healthy revenue. For example, a publisher can create a sponsored - video, podcast, and article for an advertiser as a combined offering. Doing this also gives a publisher the option to repurpose content for better reach among its audience, a win-win for you as a publisher and the advertiser.