It’s a myth that setting up a podcast has to be expensive or expensive (of course it can be!), But podcasting on a budget is quite achievable. If you were wondering how much does it cost to start a podcast? It’s a tough question.
Regardless of your budget or level, you can make podcasting work for you – the cost of making a podcast is up to you. It’s important to know that in addition to having a clear plan and defined goals, having a podcast budget is critical to keeping you on the right track and making your podcast the success you want.
1. Understand your income
You may not be quite able to make money from your podcast yet, but wherever you are, you will need cash or credit to start your podcast adventure and keep it going.
Hence, Step 1 is to define exactly what you want to do with your new podcast. By defining the purpose of your podcast and its format (how and where to produce it, etc.) you can lay the foundations for the budget that you will need to create.
Once you have your vision clear in your mind, you need to look at what money you are receiving. Write down exactly what income you have, whether it is a fixed one-time cash injection or an ongoing monthly source that way you will know exactly what to spend.
TIP: Always remember to consider whether this is your job or a hobby – how much you enter initially will be different when you see this have cash rewards or not!
2. Determine your fixed costs
Next, on your to-do list, you need to identify all of the fixed costs required to run your podcast.
Based on your planning for how you plan to produce your content, there is a need to do some research into what options are available for the needs and requirements of your podcast. The things to consider are items like your host platform or even your heating bill for the room where you are recording your podcast – make sure you put it all there!
One of the most important fixed costs (your host platform) can be kept to a minimum by choosing free or inexpensive podcast hosting platforms, such as:
- Spreaker (Five different options, from a completely free $ 6 on-air talent plan to $ 100 a year ward plans paid annually). With Spreaker, you can take care of every aspect of your podcast, from creation, editing, distribution, playback to monetization. With plans ranging from free to professional, there’s something for all podcasters.
- SoundCloud (Free to $ 11 per month for a Pro plan). SoundCloud offers a free option for budding broadcasters to post via RSS and is one of the most popular platforms. Although it’s worth noting that it isn’t specifically targeted at podcasting.
- Libsyn (from $ 5 to $ 75 per month). One of the oldest dedicated podcast host sites and extremely popular with many podcasters around the world. However, if you are thinking of monetizing your podcast in the future, keep in mind that monetization is not one of the features it offers.
- Blubrry (from $ 12 to $ 80 + per month). Blubrry, also a long-standing platform (since 2005), enables podcasters to create a fully comprehensive podcast website with a plugin.
If you want to edit your podcast, there is also free editing software available like: Audacity which allows you to record straight from a microphone onto Audacity for free. Compatible with Mac and Windows.
TIP: Make sure you haven’t missed anything by taking a look at previous bank statements and ticking everything off there.
Identify your variable (and one-time expenses)
Variable costs are those that are required to keep your business functioning, but change from month to month. And if this is the start of your podcasting journey, you need to factor in your one-off costs as well – cash for your basics: microphone and headset, plus a few dollars to create an awesome cover design (we wrote a book on how to make it) great cover art, here).
Wondering how to determine your variable costs? Take a look at what you’ve spent on office supplies, marketing / advertising costs, or replacing old equipment over the past 6 months, and calculate the average outgoing cost. Would you like to start your podcast? Try to predict what you might be spending (we wrote a blog about starting a podcast you want to watch) and use it to structure your budget for the first few months as soon as you are up and running -Check that your forecast matches the Reality matches!
TIP: Variable and one-off costs are usually fun, so they’re the most important ones to keep your budget in check!
4. Make a rainy day fund
We also strongly recommend that you budget a fixed amount that you put away each month as part of an emergency fund. If you put a little bit of money away on a regular basis, you will never get into a crisis when something unexpected comes up!
TIP: An easy way to break down your money is the 50/30/20 method. We attribute 50% to your essential items, 30% to the things you want, and 20% to saving for the future and a rainy day!
5. Build your budget!
Now is the time for the fun of budgeting! You can create it on paper, Excel, Google Sheets, or try one of the many apps.
Hopefully we’ve helped debunk the myth that starting a podcast with no money stacks is not possible – regardless of your budget, there is a way to do it, and the high cost can always be postponed until your podcast has some traction has and you start earning!