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Can You Make a Living Podcasting?

Monetizing Your Podcast


Dave and Geri, radio personalities and podcasters

Dave and Geri, radio personalities and podcasters

Dave Jagger
The quick answer is: yes - and I'll give you more details in a moment. But, first, let me give you some context.

If you had posed this question just a few years ago, your chances of success would have been less compared to today. Probably one of the most important ingredients in podcasting success can be attributed to the users themselves who have comfortably latched on to the technology. Listening and acquiring podcasts is easy and becoming second-nature for a lot of folks. In other words: users have adapted quickly.

Podcasting: For All God's Children

With so many radio people having been fired over the past few years, this is a big question a lot of them have been asking themselves. Before the wonderful technologies of compressed file size, streaming, websites, and everything the Internet offers, losing an on-air job could sometimes be the sudden end to a career - at least in the public eye.

In addition to former radio people looking to continue careers using their many of the skills they honed on-the-air, others have been attracted to podcasting either because they often wished for a career in radio or felt they would enjoy the sensation of doing a radio show.

Build An Audience For Fun or Profit

Not everyone who goes into podcasting is looking for payment. Some people want to promote their business, a service, a book, or use the podcast to establish their credentials or solidify their expertise. Becoming a podcaster gives you a unique platform to reach potential listeners, customers, business contacts, and people who share your interests.

But, inevitably the question is still important to many: Can I make a living doing a podcast? I'm here to tell you yes, you can.

A Success Story: Dave and Geri

In July of 2009 I wrote an article about "Dave and Geri" (Dave Jagger and Geri Jarvis) who had worked in West Michigan on the radio for 20 years until they suddenly found themselves unemployed. They decided to create a podcast.

I recently contacted Dave and Geri to ask how things were going a year-and-a-half later and was pleased to hear their 30 minute podcast now has 65,000 subscribers (not counting the people who subscribe through iTunes.)

Geri told me they were tweaking here and editing there in preparation for some "major changes" in the future.

"Yes, it's been profitable, and we're finding our listeners run the gambit on ages, but are mainly in younger 30s as you would expect from podcasts," says Geri.

On the down side, Geri misses the instant feedback she used to get when Dave and Geri were live on the radio. Geri adds, "The best thing about podcasting is we still have our brand in the market where we've worked for 20 years...and we're not playing 20 minutes of commercials per hour."

Dave and Geri say they are even going to start video-casting soon, too.

If you'd like to find out more or subscribe to the Dave & Geri FunCast, go to DaveAndGeri.com.

Dave and Geri are just one example of successful podcasting. If you do a podcast, I'd like to hear from you. Tell me what's working - and maybe what you wish you could have avoided had you known. Email me at radio@aboutguide.com.

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