Many of us who produce a podcast are looking for ways to create additional revenue streams. If that's you, have you considered setting up an annual event, and monetising it that way?
Hosting a yearly Virtual Summit is an excellent way to bring in extra income from your podcast, and it’s also a lot of fun putting the event together and managing it.
Read more on podcast monetisation here.
What is a Virtual Summit?
A virtual summit is where you host a collection of interviews and webinars that you release over several days. You bring together successful experts in your niche and then sell All Access Passes to the event.
Subscribers that are already interested in your podcast topic will also be interested in success stories from industry leaders. You might find they're more than happy to sign up to the mastermind event.
The publicity and interest your virtual summit generates will also have a snowball effect on your audience growth. The awareness should create additional ticket sales from previously non-subscribers to your podcast, who will likely go on to listen to your show.
Here are the top three ways how hosting an annual virtual summit can help you monetize your podcast.
Sell Passes at Different Levels
You could organise your virtual summit as a free event and then advertise it that way to draw people in. But you could also sell tickets at different tiers, each providing the buyer with more access. For example, a private Q+A session with the speakers after the main interview.
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You could also entice people to buy the upper tiers by offering free giveaways such as prizes, or the chance to keep the videos from the event.
Onboard Supporting Sponsors
This may seem challenging if you’re just starting out, but remember that you already have a head start thanks to your loyal podcast audience.
You can present the listener numbers to a company that operates in your niche and they may be glad for the extra exposure.
Being a sponsor to an event not only gets their company name and logo featured, but gives an air of authority that they are the go-to experts. Try it! Don’t be too shy to approach some companies for sponsorship. Remember, this can often be tied into sponsorship of your podcast alongside, and previous podcast sponsors are ideal candidates for sponsoring your event!
Gaining sponsorship will also add credibility to your event and you could ask your sponsors to provide some of the prizes or giveaways as part of their deal.
Grow your List Whilst Making a Profit
Hosting a virtual summit is an excellent way to grow your email subscriber list. Colin has written before about how important email lists are in podcasting.
The publicity you create, fuelled by the interest in your topic, means that anyone who was not previously subscribed to your email list will sign up just so they can join the event.
You could request that anyone who wants free access to the event must signup and subscribe to your list. If they agree to marketing messages then, later, talk about the benefits of upgrading their passes for a small fee, and watch the revenue start to roll in.
Even better, more email subscribers means more chance to grow your audience. And that means you can charge greater advertising fees in the long run.
Find out More About How to Run a Virtual Summit
So, if you haven’t yet considered hosting a Virtual Summit as a way of bringing in extra revenue for your podcast, that was three reasons why.
If you want to learn much more about how to run a virtual summit, here are a few resources for you:
- Free webinar on how to run a successful summit
- A full written guide to running a web summit
- Our flagship course on running a virtual summit
With a little effort and organisation, you have a way of bringing in extra money for your podcast, and you’ll have fun along the way too.
Or read this, for more on all the ways to monetise your podcast.
Liam Austin is a life-long entrepreneur, focusing on business development, strategy, content & virtual summits. A former professional soccer player, addicted to podcasts, surfing and burritos. Previous experience growing media companies in Australia and the UK.