2 ways to monetize a huge podcast audience

Alex Cooper (“Call Her Daddy”) gets a $60m deal from Spotify. Harry Stebbings (“The Twenty Minute VC”) raises a $140m venture fund.


June 17, 2021

A knock against podcasts has long been their difficulty to monetize, even as the medium becomes more prominent.

Case in point: Ad spend for (stodgy old) radio is projected at $12B this year, while (supposedly hip) podcasts will bring in $1B.

Over the past 48 hours, though, 2 announcements show the power of building a big podcast audience:

  • Alex Cooper, 26: In 2018, Cooper launched “Call Her Daddy” — a sex-positive female-led show — on the Barstool Sports podcast network. Her starting salary was $70k (and a % of merchandise).Fast forward 3 years: The show has exploded in popularity and Cooper just secured a 3-year deal with Spotify worth $60m+.
  • Harry Stebbings, 24: In 2014, teenage Stebbings launched “The Twenty Minute VC,” a podcast that interviews VCs and entrepreneurs for… you guessed it… 20 minutes.Since then, the show has been downloaded 80m times. Stebbings has leveraged his audience size to break into venture capital and raised $140m for a fund called 20VC.

Take that, radio!

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