How Do Podcasters Get Paid for Every Podcast Episode?

Imagine getting paid for something you enjoy doing. In recent years, many podcasters and other content creators have turned their hobbies and passions into full-time careers. 

Those unfamiliar with the industry may ask, “do podcasters get paid?” The answer is yes! Gone are the days of monthly checks in the mail; with the rise of media channels and influencers, monetization is how most content creators generate their income. 

But how do podcasters get paid? If you’ve been in the podcast business for any span of time, you may be wondering how to monetize your content and get paid. 

Hoping to get paid through podcasting? This article is for you. We’ll discuss how you can monetize your podcast and transform your passion into a revenue stream.  

So, do podcasters get paid? 

The content creation industry is a fast-growing one, and because of that, there are many monetization opportunities. While some podcasters don’t get paid, many do! Popular podcasters often rack in a large sum of money. For example, Joe Rogan, actor, comedian and host of The Joe Rogan Experience, is said to make about $100k per episode. That’s a lot! 

If you’re hoping for us to tell you a unique formula to help you monetize your way to millions, we have one, but it may not be the one you expect. Let us demystify the first steps of the monetization process for you: 

Hard work + Consistency. 

As unexciting as it may seem, that’s the best way to get there. American entrepreneur Jim Rohn once said, “Success is neither magical nor mysterious. Success is the natural consequence of consistently applying the basic fundamentals.” And frankly, he’s right. 

At first, many shows don’t make much money, if any at all. Unless a podcaster or a company already has a loyal following on another platform, it takes perseverance to build an audience. Even for content creators adding podcasts to their media arsenal, gathering an audience on a new platform can take some time.

That said, don’t be discouraged if you’re just starting out! Podcasting is a lot of work, but if you produce quality content consistently, you’ll eventually see results. Start by publishing good content. Sponsors and audiences won’t want to support a show that isn’t consistent or high-quality. Your podcasts don’t need to have studio-level production, but they should sound good. 

Okay, so now that we’ve covered the first step, let’s dive into how you can make some money – how do podcasters get paid? There are two key ways podcasters make money: sponsorships and audience support. 


The most common revenue stream is through sponsorships. Here, sponsors pay to advertise their company to a podcaster’s audience. It’s a win-win for both parties: the sponsor increases brand awareness, and the podcaster gets a regular income. 

There are several options when it comes to podcast advertising, and the cost will typically depend on the placement and length of ads, in addition to the podcast’s popularity. 

Placement-wise, ads can be pre-roll (before the podcast begins), mid-roll (during) or post-roll (towards the end). Cost varies based on the location, with mid-roll ads being the most expensive due to prime-time placement. 

Payment methods include: 

  • CPM (cost per mille). Podcasters are paid a specific rate for every 1000 listens or downloads. This typically works best for larger shows. 
  • Value-based pricing. Based on frequency and placement, sponsors and podcasters will determine a set price for a certain number of episodes or ads.
  • Affiliate links. Podcasters are paid based on how many sales they generate through affiliate links. 

How to get podcast sponsors 

To get sponsors, you can either make pitches yourself or join a podcast network. If you go the network route, you will have to split some of the revenue, but it becomes easier to find quality sponsors. 

Podcast networks like Podbean let you submit your podcast and be matched with sponsors. The Podbean Ads Marketplace gives you the option to approve ads manually or let them run on your show automatically. This way, you control which ads are associated with your podcast. 

The Ads Marketplace is free for all Podbean podcasters. Podbean ads are run using the CPM model, and the network is geared toward helping you make as much money as possible while also ensuring that ads are integrated well. 

Audience support

Podcasters can also earn through audience donations, funding, or merch sales. This model is ideal for those with a loyal following and high engagement. The crucial thing to remember with this method is that it’s up to you to let your audience members know. If they don’t know, they can’t support your show financially!

Here are a few ways podcasters can monetize audience support: 

General donations 

Provide a way for audience members to give one-time or regular donations. People often like to show support but can’t commit to monthly contributions. Have a way to collect general donations through PayPal or another direct money transfer platform. 

Live-streamed episodes provide an excellent opportunity for listeners to donate during the stream and for you to thank them as they do. People love recognition. It will encourage them to continue and may even nudge others to donate. 

Podbean’s audio live-streaming feature lets you interact with your audience and even collect virtual gifts from your attendees. 

Paid content and patron programs 

In this case, listeners must pay to access some of your content. Paid content can include extended or uncut versions of episodes and interviews or simply additional content behind a paywall. 

Patron programs take paid content a step further. Instead of just specific content, patrons give monthly donations for exclusive VIP access to behind-the-scenes content, unreleased footage, private Q&As, or live-stream broadcasts. 

Podbean has both premium content and patron program options to help you monetize your content easily. If you opt for one or both of these, make sure you still put time and effort into your free content, as this is important for your non-exclusive members. 


Sell podcast merch! Keychains to sweaters, notebooks and t-shirts and everything in between. Consider your niche and target audience to determine what kind of merch you should sell. For example, if you run a comedy or entertainment channel, your listeners may love a shirt with a funny catchphrase or an inside joke. 

How do podcasters get paid so much per episode? A combination of both.

Not all podcasts are financed the same way. Some shows depend on sponsorships, while others run primarily on audience support. It really depends on the size and the type of podcast show. 

To maximize your revenue, try a combination of both. Just be careful to make sure there are no conflicts of interest. With Podbean, you can submit your show to get sponsors and simultaneously monetize your content using paywalls and audio live-stream broadcast features.


If you still have a smaller audience, don’t be discouraged. Everyone starts somewhere. If you’re a new podcaster looking for the best way to monetize your show, or even if you already have a loyal audience, try Podbean to get the most out of podcast monetization. 

Sign up to Podbean and gain access to all our exclusive monetization features. 

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