How to Get Podcast Sponsorships

Everything you need to know about getting podcast sponsors

Podcasters love what they do -- all the time spent recording, editing, and promoting podcasts can be a rewarding process. But we all know that content creation is also time-consuming and energy-intensive. Eventually, most podcast creators will start to ponder the question: how do I make money from my podcast?

By seamlessly including sponsors as part of your podcast, you can monetize what you love doing and earn passive income to grow your podcast even more. You can then use that growth to your advantage; companies looking to sponsor podcasts often look for podcasts with a growing audience.

Whether it's your first time looking for a sponsor or you're trying to land a huge sponsorship, this article aims to help you get the sponsor you need to grow your podcast. Learn everything you need to know about getting sponsorships for your podcast by reading below.

Podcast sponsorships 101

With a podcast sponsorship, a brand is generally looking to sell its product and/or to increase brand awareness through a podcast. Whenever listeners turn on a sponsored podcast, they'll hear the advertisements for that sponsor. This provides podcast sponsors with a source of recurring leads and sales.

Advertising vs. sponsorships

Before starting, it’s important to know the difference between podcast advertisements and sponsorships. Advertisements and sponsorships are often used interchangeably with podcasts. While they are similar, there is an important distinction between the two. Advertising involves running ads on the podcast episodes themselves. A sponsorship can involve advertising channels outside the podcast, often extending into social media and other platforms. For example, a podcast sponsorship may entail tweeting about your sponsor in addition to mentioning them during the podcast itself.

Growing your podcast

With so many podcasts out there, it can be tough to get your podcast off the ground -- particularly in the beginning of your journey. Your total audience plays a big part in landing sponsorships and how much you can earn in a sponsorship deal. With more listeners, you have a better chance of landing sponsorships. Here are a few tips on how to grow the listenership of your podcast with the end goal of getting a great sponsorship deal.

Use social channels

If you want to grow your podcast following, social media provides an opportunity to grow faster. Social media not only offers the opportunity to share your episodes with your followers, but also makes it easy to engage with listeners. And in addition to engaging with your current followers, you can also reach new people through the use of relevant and effective hashtags. Find the social media platforms that your target audience uses and post your podcast episodes, updates, and other content related to your show. If you have guests on your show, be sure to tag their social handles.

How this helps: Sponsors pay attention to your total number of followers and general social media engagement (e.g., how often your fans comment on or like your posts). The more followers you have and/or the better engaged they are, the more attractive your podcast looks to sponsors.

Take advantage of SEO

If you publish podcasts online or on your website, you can drive more traffic through SEO. Be sure to properly name your podcast and episode titles to match what people are searching for. It’s also a good idea to use a transcription service to get the podcast’s content in text.

How this helps: When done correctly, SEO leads to significantly more traffic, which leads to more plays of your podcast episode.

How to pitch sponsors

Once you get a significant following, you should shift your focus from growing your podcast to pitching potential sponsors interested in working with you. Pitching sponsors is a big part of landing a sponsor.

Finding sponsors for podcasts

Before you pitch sponsors, you need to connect with sponsors that could be a good fit for your podcast. Try reaching out to companies with customers that might listen to your podcast. For instance, sports podcasts might want to pitch athletic apparel and equipment brands. Looking For Sponsor also offers an extensive sponsorship companies list which makes searching for sponsors faster and easier.

Looking for sponsors? We can connect you with hundreds of companies looking to sponsor you and your podcast.

Sponsorship pitching process

Prepare a media kit

Media kits are easy to send off to sponsors. If you have a website, you should include a press kit page for companies looking to sponsor your podcast. In your media kit, include a short bio on the podcast and hosts, press or notable achievements, and testimonials.

Present the data

When looking for a sponsor, it's important to know what you have to offer. Podcasters should prepare data about their audience and their level of engagement. Podcast sponsors generally want to see things like:

  • Number of listens your podcasts get
  • Number of unique listeners for your podcasts
  • Number of followers/subscribers that your podcast has
  • Demographics of your audience (age, gender, and region)
  • Number of social media followers

Provide examples

Pick some of your best podcast episodes and point them out to potential sponsors. This will give sponsors a better idea of what your podcast is about, while also showcasing the quality of your work.

What sponsors are looking for

Podcast sponsorship can be an effective way for a company to get their name out there. Ultimately, what sponsors are most concerned with when sponsoring a podcast is:

  1. Selling their product or service
  2. Increasing brand awareness

Once you start working with a sponsor, you’ll want to keep track of these goals. Sponsors will likely keep track of sales through either affiliate links or promo codes.

Choosing the right sponsor

For a successful partnership with a sponsor, podcasters should consider the following:

  • Audience is a big component of having a successful partnership with a sponsor. Make sure there is significant overlap in interests and demographics between your audience and your sponsor's audience.
  • Brand identities of podcast and sponsor should align
  • Your sponsor's products or services should be desirable to your audience

Making a deal

Once you’ve found a sponsor, it’s time to seal the deal! Many considerations around pricing should be considered when podcasters discuss payments with sponsors.

Pricing structure

There are three main ways to structure your pricing when working with a sponsor: CPM, affiliate, or value-based.

  • CPM: The CPM (Cost Per Mille) model means that you're paid a certain amount for every 1,000 listeners.
  • Affiliate: Podcasters can join a sponsor's affiliate marketing program. Under the affiliate model, you get paid whenever a listener buys products promoted on your podcast or clicks affiliate links.
  • Value-based: With the value-based model, payments are negotiated at a set rate (typically per episode). This structure could work particularly well for smaller podcasts.

After sending over your pricing, your sponsor may come back with a counter-offer. Don't be afraid to negotiate!

Product advertisement structure

The ads you run could affect the experience of listeners, so ad format should be discussed with your sponsor. To avoid tarnishing the quality of your podcast with poorly executed ads, here are a few tips and considerations:

  • Keep ads short: Don’t risk losing your audience! Consider running short ads between 15 and 30 seconds in length.
  • Voice: Will ads be delivered by a podcast host or does the sponsor want to use a pre-made ad with a different voice? Host-read ads can create more of a natural transition for listeners.
  • Choose your ad placement: For those unfamiliar with podcast sponsorships, there are three types of ad placements for podcasts: pre-roll, mid-roll, and post-roll ads. Mid rolls are considered the most valuable for a sponsor, while pre-roll and post-roll ads are considered less valuable. For podcasters, it’s important to know what ad placements you have available and what sponsors are looking for.

Looking for sponsors or sponsorship opportunities?

Sponsorship marketing is a cost-effective method for companies to advertise their goods and services to targeted, engaged audiences. Looking For Sponsor was created to connect people looking for sponsorships with the companies looking to sponsor them.

Social media influencers, YouTubers, streamers, podcasts, esports teams, nonprofits, and school clubs post their sponsorship opportunities on our website, where companies can discover them and contribute sponsorship money.

Although we regularly feature sponsorship opportunities, you can find even more opportunities (and post your own) by signing up. It's 100% free to browse our opportunities -- sign up today!