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A quick scheduling note to kick things off: There are only four more episodes of Podcast Pontifications before I go on my Long Winter’s nap. That’s this missive, plus three more this week. Then you’ll have to wait a few weeks before you get new content from me. So feel free to tear through the back catalog if you’re new. Lots of great stuff there!
Today, however, I’m going to touch on a topic just about everyone considers sensitive. But perhaps even more so to independent podcasters. And that topic is…money.
Money independent podcasters earn by having their productions in the world, and money independent podcasters spend so they can bring their productions to the world.
Don’t Judge Others By Your Pocketbook
Before I go down this dangerous path, we need to make a pact: I promise to not judge you by my pocketbook. You, in turn, need to promise to not judge the totality of independent podcasting by your pocketbook.
You and I share certain circumstances. We both share some of those circumstances with a great many other indie podcasters. But it would be hubris on both of our parts if we assumed those shared circumstances were indicative of the circumstances of everyone else in the independent podcasting space.
With that in mind, let me rip off the bandaid right away and say this:
Indie podcasting doesn't mean poor podcasters.
It doesn't. And yes, I do recognize and fully understand that the vast majority of indie podcasters are—at least when it comes to counting money flowing into and out of their podcast—poor. True though that may be, it's not a requirement.
Being a poor indie podcaster is not a badge of honor. Nor is it a mark of shame. If it’s anything at all, being a poor podcaster (if, in fact, you are a poor podcaster) is a current state. And as any physic or chemistry student can tell you, states can be changed.
Indie podcasting doesn't mean poor podcasters. If you wish and if it is deserved, you can ask for more from your sponsors, your patrons, your supporters, or other sources of income. If, in fact, your production is actually worth more. And if it’s not, in fact, worth more currently, you can take the necessary steps to change that too.
Most indie podcasters fail to earn any revenue—at all—from their shows. This is true. But it’s also true that many other independent podcasters live very comfortable lives. Comfortable enough to oftentimes pay a staff of people a living wage.
In between those two extremes are countless examples of other indie podcasters, some making a little, some making a lot.
Indie podcasting doesn't mean poor podcasters. You can—if you wish and if you have the means—spend more on services that will have direct benefits on your podcast. I don't recommend spending money for the sake of spending. But there is some truth in the old adage, you’ve got to spend money to make money.
Most indie podcasters invest heavily in their own time, seeking out and relying on free or cheap services so they can spend as little of their treasure as possible on their podcasts. This is true. But it’s also true that many other independent podcasters spend tens of thousands of dollars (or more) every single month just to keep their production machine flowing.
In between those two extremes is where I once again point out the countless other indie podcasters, some spending a little money, some spending a lot.
Indie podcasting doesn't mean poor podcasters.
Again I remind you to not judge the totality of indie podcasting by your pocketbook. It's OK that some services offered to indie podcasters are aimed at those who occupy a different financial state than you do today. Not every service must be made available to you on your terms or the totality of indie podcasting.
Four coffees for the four inspiring questions you tipped us off to this week.
Thank you very much, Mark. I appreciate that. Mark made the choice to make a multiple virtual coffee purchase. However, there’s also an option to become a supporting member, which does much the same thing. And that level of support comes with extra perks, so check that out.
In fact, check out all the ways you can support the show on the Value For Value page. It requires time, treasure and talent from my end to put out the show. The way you can show me you get value from that is to let some of that value flow back to the show. See that page for many ways to do that with your own time, treasure, or talents.
Three more episodes to go this week before I take my long winter’s nap. But before that happens, I shall be back tomorrow with yet another Podcast Pontifications.
Podcast Pontifications is written and narrated by Evo Terra. He’s on a mission to make podcasting better. Links to everything mentioned in today’s episode are in the notes section of your podcast listening app. A written-to-be-read article based on today’s episode is available at PodcastPontifications.com, where you’ll also find a video version and a corrected transcript, both created by Allie Press. Podcast Pontifications is a production of Simpler Media. Find out more at Simpler.Media.