Worried that you don't have enough downloads to get sponsors? It's one of the biggest concerns I see from podcasters who want sponsors, but aren't sure they have the audience to attract and keep them.
But here's a secret: there are things we can do to add value for our sponsors that the big podcasts won't do. And that's what we're talking about today.
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Perhaps the biggest concern people have when I talk to them about getting podcast sponsorships is that they're worried they don't have enough downloads, that sponsors won't want to work with them if they don't have as many downloads as. Maybe the biggest show in their niche or just the biggest show period. But here's the secret. You don't need a lot of downloads to get sponsors. So in today's episode, I'm going to tell you five ways that you can add value to your sponsorship so that you can be more competitive or as competitive as those bigger shows. All right, let's dive into it. So first of all, let me just set the stage here for you. Big podcasts sell only based on cpm, which means if they get 10,000 downloads and they charge $20 per cpm, there's a very clear amount of money that they are charging. Right? And I, it's like 200 bucks. Right. Uh, if I do my math correctly, there, it might be 2000 bucks Uh, 20 times 10. No, it's, it's 200 bucks. So the big podcasts that are getting hundreds of thousands of downloads, maybe millions of downloads, they can afford to do that because they're, they're getting couple thousand bucks per sponsorship, probably as small podcasters. We don't have that luxury and it doesn't make sense for us to sell via cpm. So what can we do? Well, I wanna tell you. Well, I wanna tell you five things that we can do to add value to our sponsorships. The first is create a YouTube video or several YouTube videos. You can bet that NPR isn't doing this for their podcast sponsorships, but a lot of brands are super keen on having video content created. As a matter of fact, the last several podcast sponsors I landed a couple of which were outside of my personal network. I was able to sweeten the pot and land a three month podcast sponsorship deal, where I also offered a video. And here's the, the dirty secret, right? The video is baked into that. So they sponsor my podcast for three months. I make them a YouTube video. They're super happy about it. That is a very attractive offer to brands. The other bit is that brands probably. Are looking for content to repurpose. So if you make them a video, maybe make a couple of clips that they can share on social media or tell them for an added price, they can reuse that video in paid sponsorship or paid advertising. So number one, create a YouTube video or a couple of YouTube videos. I will generally structure it where like, if. If you do two months, I will give you one video. Maybe if you do three months, I'll give you one video. So basically a video per quarter that gets added to my YouTube channel. And then, uh, I maybe talk about that in the podcast sponsorship and the add roll if they want. Or it's just another avenue to get eyeballs on them and raise their brand awareness. And again, I, a lot of brands are really keen on this right now. A lot of my requests coming in are specifically for videos on my YouTube channel, which my podcast is bigger than my YouTube channel, but the video content is super valuable. Number two, make them a sponsor of your newsletter. You have a newsletter, right? I've, we've talked about call to action here. You need to have a new. And you need to get people on that newsletter. But let's say you already have that. Make them a sponsor of your newsletter. Newsletter sponsorship is all the rage these days, and even if you have a low number of subscribers, putting that sponsor right in front of them is super valuable. So again, this is something that I'll do. I'll offer them a couple of packages where if they sponsor for three, I will give them a dedicated section in one of my weekly newsletters. If they sponsor the podcast, they get mentioned in the newsletter every week anyway, because it's like right underneath the episode. This episode is sponsored by, so that's a value add already, but for a little extra, I'll give them a dedicated section. If they do, let's say half a year, I will release a dedicated newsletter. For them. So instead of this newsletter is brought to you by, or this week's issue is brought to you by, um, among other content, they will have just a newsletter dedicated to their service. Uh, this is something that San Box was really interested in. So I, I released a newsletter for them. I think it worked pretty okay for them. But they were interested. They were almost more interested in that than the podcast sponsorship. But again, that multifaceted approach adds value for them. And again, you know, stuff you should know, or iHeartRadio, they're not adding, they're not creating a newsletter for their sponsors. Their sponsors are buying up ad inventory through this dynamic. Right. So that personal touch when I was a freelancer, I would tell other freelancers, yes we are, We're not as big as agencies. We can't offer 24 7 service. We can't offer every service under the sun. But what we can offer is a more personal touch. Cuz if you hire the lance, The freelancer is the person you'll be working with for the whole project, and you will know the freelancer well, and the freelancer will know your project well. They won't just be brought in halfway through. They're with you from the beginning. The same thing could be said of smaller podcasters who are looking for sponsorship deals. Because, uh, it's not just some faceless system where I'm buying inventory based on cpm. I'm talking to you about your goals. What makes this campaign a success? I ask every single one of my potential sponsors that I hop on a call with them and I say, Hey, what are you looking for? Do you just wanna do the podcast sponsorship? Oh, we'd really love video. Great. I can work that into our package. So that's the competitive edge we have. We are people willing to work with their people to make the campaign a success. Number three, do a webinar or live stream with or for the brand, right? So maybe somebody from the brand can join you on the live stream or the webinar, or you just do it separately and mention them and say that it's brought to you by them. But a live event where you're showcasing the. Can be a win-win. You and the brand learn more about what your audience wants, and then you can cross promote your show in that live stream. So let's say you do a YouTube live, right? And it's not with the brand, but it's for the brand. And the brand is some software. Great. You're doing a demo. How to sign up for the software for the livestream. By the way, this brand also sponsors my podcast where I talk about x y. Check it out. I'll drop a link in the description for you to listen and subscribe. Thanks so much to this brand for sponsoring both my podcast and this live stream. Hey, let me know what do you think about this product? What do you love? What do you think could be improved? Drop a comment, let me know. Then you take that feedback back to the brand. That's not something they would get from a a podcast sponsor. Necessarily, and that feedback is gold to them. Good, bad, indifferent, it's gold because they learn about their potential audience. Number four, create social media posts. Right? A lot of people will tell me, Hey, I, I don't have a lot of downloads, but I have thousands of followers on Instagram. In fact, if you caught the episode a couple weeks ago of Make Money Podcasting, I re-released a coaching call I did with Scott. he has a relatively small podcast and a huge Instagram following. So if you are trying to get brand deals, use that audience. Say, Hey, if you sponsor my podcast, not only will you get the podcast sponsorship, but I will do, uh, uh, for panel or whatever it's called, story about you. On my Instagram, I will create a dedicated post on my Instagram. I'll do a real on my Instagram. And then you can let the brands reuse that post organically or at a higher value. They could do paid ads. So that's high value for them. High value for them, because you're not only leveraging your podcast audience, you're using your social media presence to speak candidly, maybe not candidly, but. About the brand to the biggest audience you have. This is what I call calculating your overall reach. I think I mentioned this a few weeks ago on on Make money podcasting. When you calculate your overall reach, you're not just looking at downloads, you're not just looking at your listeners, you're looking at your listeners and your newsletter and your social following, and that is where you can really bring value for sponsor. So that was number four. Create social media posts. And number five, do a dedicated interview with the sponsor. And this could be any medium, right? It could be blog, podcast, video, but having content dedicated to the sponsor is great. Press for them with a friendly face cuz you get to ask the brand some questions now maybe get questions from your audience. Hey, I'm interviewing whoever. I'm interviewing Acme about this new product that does X. What questions do you have about that product? Are you interested in it? What problem could it solve for you? Let me know. I'm interviewing the founder in a couple of weeks. So that could be really high value for them. I've done that as well. Uh, and it give, it gives the brand Sound Clips as well, Sound clips, video clips to reshare. So those are the five things. If we go through them again, really quickly, create one or more YouTube videos. Make them the sponsor of your newsletter. Do a webinar or live stream with them. Create social media posts. Or do a dedicated interview with them, or some combination of the five create some packages. One is just the first is just podcast sponsorship. Maybe the last one is all of them, and that's gonna be the highest dollar value. The Wonders and the iHeartRadio of the world have massive reach so they can just straight charge cpm. Cost per Miele, right? But CPM doesn't work for small podcasters like us. Leveraging your overall reach. And your good will with your audience. That is much higher value. There's a reason that Squarespace and MeUndies sponsor the biggest podcasts. It's because they're just looking for general reach. But if a smaller brand who wants to leverage the trust you have with your audience comes to you, that's not really something. The bigger brands. Can, uh, take advantage of. Sure. Maybe in the beginning they could, but stuff you should know. Right. This is a really good example. I think Josh and Chuck are great. I love their show. I've seen them live, but in the beginning, right? I got like MeUndies because they sponsored MeUndies and Chuck talked about how comfortable they were and I tried them out. They were pretty comfortable. They fell apart pretty quickly though today. Half their ads aren't even read by the host. Half their ads are basically just radio commercials. So if you do an ad read or a live stream where you're talking about this brand, I got to use it and I love it. That's gonna be a lot more impactful for a lot of brands. So there you go. Five ways that you can increase value for your sponsorship if you're worried you don't have a lot of downloads. Thanks so much for listening today. Uh, for all of the show notes you can head over to Make Money Pod. Dot com you'll find, uh, anything I talked about over here, uh, as well as, uh, other links, other episodes that are helpful and you could subscribe to this show as well. So thanks so much for watching, and until next time, I can't wait to see what you make.