AskPat 322 Episode Transcript
Pat Flynn: What's up, everybody? Pat Flynn here. Welcome to Episode 322 of AskPat. Thank you so much for joining me today.
All right, here's today's question from John.
John: Hey Pat, this is John. I'm getting ready to launch a new podcast and I was wondering if there's a certain number of listeners or downloads or a certain time that needs to go by before you begin to monetize the podcast. I do believe in adding value first and building an audience, and then applying monetization. Just want to get your thoughts. Thanks.
Pat Flynn: Hey John. What's up. Thank you so much for the question today. This is an interesting question because when starting a podcast, it's going to be hard to monetize right from the start anyway. I wouldn't worry about finding advertisers and people to sponsor your show beforehand.
When I started this show, AskPat, I already had a largely populated podcast called Smart Passive Income with over 10 million downloads. It was very difficult for me to get sponsors to come on board with this brand new show because they wanted numbers. They wanted proof. They wanted to know that there were listeners on the other end, and what they were like. You're going to have to put some time in to see how much legs your podcast would have.
Now, the cool part is when you get started, that's when you put all your efforts into the launch of it. That's when you're going to have, hopefully, a lot of people come on and you'll be featured in New and Noteworthy; New and Noteworthy in iTunes where you're going to get a lot of new listeners and viewers coming in, depending if you're an audio or video podcast. Which one I'm not sure, but I'm assuming the audio because that's what most people are doing right now. Either way, those first eight weeks of your show give you a lot of information in terms of who your audience is, but it's also going to give you some good numbers that you can then take to a sponsor and share to potentially have them come on and advertise on your show.
Six weeks is the standard in terms of what advertisers are looking for. They always ask, how many people listen per episode. If you just ask that question without specifying the length of time, it could be the day after a new show comes out or a year after. Typically, it's six weeks. I would wait a minimum of six weeks, if you have a chance to, to be able to then go out and see what those numbers are and then present those numbers to different advertisers. Reach out to other advertisers. Go to other shows in your nice and see who else is advertising those episodes. That's who I would target first.
Obviously, if you're working with other companies, or perhaps you purchased a product or a company's product that you love, you can reach out to them. Since you have that experience working with them already, they're going to be pretty likely to work with you. If you have any sort of numbers behind your podcast, it's going to work out.
That doesn't mean you shouldn't think about those things beforehand, even before launching. Keeping a list of potential sponsors, keeping a list of products that you can promote as an affiliate, those are things that you can do ahead of time. I would definitely do ahead of time, at least think ahead in that way. I also don't want you to discount the fact that you're building this audience and building trust with them and you obviously have the potential to sell your own products down the road as well.
If you don't know who your audience is upfront, you're just sort of starting this podcast and this brand totally from scratch, then it's going to be difficult to understand what can you do. What can you create? What solution can you provide to serve this audience because you don't know who that audience is exactly yet. You might have an idea, and it's good to think about those things. Write those things down. Brainstorm about those things as much as possible. But truly, who is going to tell you what kind of product to create will be the audience that you eventually form. When you open up opportunities for them to talk to you, so you can listen, so that you can hear the conversation, whether you create a Facebook group for your community, whether you have them come on your email list, which you obviously should be doing, and then ask them what are you struggling with. What do you want to learn more about blank? Those answers that you get from your audience there are going to tell you what you should be creating courses about, what your book should book should be about, what your other blog post and other podcast episodes should be about. That's going to give you precise information on exactly what you should focus your time and effort into monetization for your own efforts.
That's different than getting sponsors on board, but it's better because you're controlling the customer experience. They're continually coming into your brand and using stuff that you've created. You're building and even bigger rapport with them as you help them along the way, first with your free podcast, but then with these paid things that you come out with over time. Again, it only happens through opening up those opportunities to actually talk to your audience and have them talk back to you and also with each other.
Also, just keeping an open mind of “okay, how can I provide value? How can I always be finding out what solution I can provide for my audience?” Maybe sometimes it's a free solution in terms of just a blog post or podcast episode about that topic. Maybe it's a hot topic and you go deeper into it and you create a product. You can even validate those products by putting people onto a webinar and talking about a product, and even pre-selling that product. I just did a blog post on pre-selling, “6 Ways to Validate a Product Before You Waste Your Time and Money.” You can find that in the archive at SmartPassiveIncome.com.
You can use those strategies like pre-selling, something that John Lee Dumas does very well, and a lot of other people. We've had Jared Robinson on the show, a PE teacher who validated his products to his audience before he even created it. He was about to get $15,000 from his audience to buy this product that wasn't even created yet. That way, he saved time and money. He validated that this was a thing that they wanted and then he moved on and actually hooked up with a developer to get it created. Such a smart thing to do. You can do all of those things, John, as you build up your audience on your podcast.
Hopefully that answers your question. I gave you a little bit more than just sponsorship and advertising. Hopefully that gives you some inspiration and at least gets your mindset in the direction of, how can I, myself, create something to provide a solution for my audience.
An AskPat t-shirt is headed your way. For those of you listening, if you have a question you’d like featured on the show as well, you can go to AskPat.com and ask right there on that page. Thank you so much for all the questions. Obviously, this show not exist without you and all of your questions. We have a dozen coming in a day now, which is amazing. I love it.
Thank you so much, and always, I like to end with a quote. Today's quote comes from Coleman Hawkins. He says, “If you don't make mistakes, you aren't really trying.” So, try everybody. Go make mistakes. Learn from them. Keep crushing it. Love you guys. I'll see you tomorrow on the next episode of AskPat. Thanks.