Getting Started / How It Works

Q: What is Podcorn?

Podcorn is a marketplace that connects brands and podcasts for native sponsorships. We take the pain out of finding and sponsoring on-demand audio shows and empower podcasters to monetize their voices and passions in a way that is engaging for listeners.

Q: Does it cost anything to use Podcorn?

No, it doesn't cost anything to sign up for a Podcorn account, browse the sponsorship opportunities available, or send proposals. 

Click here to sign up for free and begin browsing sponsorship opportunities.

Q: Do I need to have an active podcast with an RSS feed to sign up and look at opportunities on Podcorn?

Yes, you will need to have an active podcast with an RSS feed URL in order to sign up and begin browsing opportunities. If you aren't sure what your show's RSS feed URL is, you can search for it here. 

Q: How does Podcorn make money?

We take a small 10% fee for completed sponsorships to support our work in bringing you opportunities and providing an easy, secure, and safe space to collaborate with brands. If you'd like, you can also add an additional 10% into your price when you are sending your proposal to brands to ensure you get paid out exactly the amount you'd like to earn.

Q: I have multiple shows or a podcast network. Can I manage multiple podcasts from one Podcorn account?

Yes, it is possible to manage multiple shows or a network from a single Podcorn account. Check out the instructions in our help center to learn more.

Q: My show is new and I don't have many listeners yet. Can I still use Podcorn?

Podcorn is open for podcasters at all levels, but if you're brand new to podcasting or if your audience is very small (less than a few hundred listeners or downloads per episode, for example), it might make sense to spend your time and effort on producing more episodes and growing your audience. You can always return to Podcorn and your search for sponsors later.

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Campaigns / Proposals

Q: Does it cost anything to send proposals?

It does not cost anything to send proposals, and there's no limit to the number of proposals you can send. 

For best results, we recommend tailoring your proposals for each opportunity and only sending proposals to brands that you feel are a great fit for your show and audience. Don't copy/paste generic proposals and send proposals to every opportunity, in other words. 

Q: Can you help me get a sponsor?

We can't promise to connect you with a specific sponsor, but there's a brand or company you think would be a good fit for your show, please reach out to them and tell them about Podcorn! We'd be happy to help them setup their first campaign so you can send them a proposal. 

Q: How long will it take for my proposal to be reviewed and approved or rejected after I send it?

We don't require brands to approve or reject proposals, but if you don't hear back within a reasonable amount of time, consider looking for a new campaign to make a proposal to.

We also have a proposal best practices article if you'd like to learn more about how to improve your proposals and increase the chances that you'll be hired for a campaign.

Q: Can I see or edit a proposal I've sent?

Yes, you can view and edit your proposal after it has been submitted, if you need to. Go to Sponsorships > Sort By: Proposals Sent > Edit Proposal.

Q: I'm not getting hired or hearing back. Am I doing something wrong?

We're sorry to hear you haven't gotten other sponsors for your podcast yet. Please do keep at it as it sometime takes a little time and effort to find the right sponsor for your show.  Here are a few tips that should help:

  1. The best proposals make a connection between the podcast and brand.  If you have an episode coming up that the brand would be a good match for, mention that in your proposal. Explain or describe what you would love to highlight in your ad (such as pointing out a great feature, etc). 
  2. Explain why you feel you are a fit to promote the brand. For instance, if you already like or use the product or if it is something that you believe your listeners will like, you should let the brand know. 
  3. Record an audio proposal in addition to the written piece just to let the brand know why you think they are great. This will go a long way towards establishing trust with the brand, which will increase the odds that they will want to work with you.
  4. Consider offering multiple sponsorships for the price of one to give brands an extra incentive to establish an initial relationship. This is also a way you can help your proposal stand out.

Q: I manage a network, can I get hired for a campaign for my whole network instead of just a single show?

Currently Podcorn is primarily setup to help individual shows find sponsorship opportunities, but if you send over a list of your network's shows, along with the average number of downloads per episode within a 30 day period, demographic information for each show (age, gender, etc), and each show's category, we'd be happy to pass along that information to our campaigns team who works to connect sponsors with shows that would be a good fit for their campaigns. 

Q: Would you be interested in sponsoring my show?

We're not currently sponsoring shows outside of the campaigns we setup in Podcorn, but we'd encourage you to sign up for a free Podcorn account and browse the opportunities available in the dashboard. It doesn't cost anything to browse or send proposals, and there are plenty of active campaigns running. You'll most likely find a campaign that's a good fit for your show.

Q: I accidentally hid a campaign, is there a way I can restore it so I can submit a proposal to the campaign?

We are currently working on a feature that will allow you to restore a campaign opportunity that you've hidden. In the meantime, please be careful when hiding opportunities in your dashboard! 

Q: Do I have to finish a proposal after it's been approved?

You are not legally required to complete work for any of the proposals you send that are approved, but we do strongly recommend doing your best to finish any campaign you're approved for, as backing out of or not completing the work for a proposal after it's been approved would be a poor experience for the brand that hired you.

We want to make sure everyone is happy with their experience using Podcorn, and we appreciate your help with this mission. If you have a poor experience on Podcorn, please let us know! We'll do our best to help.

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Money / Getting Paid

Q: How do I get paid?

We require all brands to pay for the sponsorship upfront immediately upon deciding to hire you, and we'll hold the money securely for you in escrow throughout the duration of the campaign and release it as soon as the brand approves the content that you'll be publishing on your show.

You can choose to get paid through either Stripe or Paypal, and you can easily configure either one from the Settings > Earning page in your Podcorn dashboard.

We take a small 10% fee for completed sponsorships to support our work in bringing you opportunities and providing an easy, secure, and safe space to collaborate with brands. If you'd like, you can also add an additional 10% into your price when you are sending your proposal to brands to ensure you get paid out exactly the amount you'd like to earn.

Q: Do I have to connect my payment accounts before I can start working with brands?

While we recommend setting up your payments account right away, you can wait to connect Stripe or Paypal for your account until after you've been hired for a campaign, if you'd like. 

We'll hold any money that you earn before setting up your payments account, and any earnings from completed campaigns will automatically be transferred to your account once you finish setting up either Stripe or Paypal.

Q: How long does it take the money to be transferred into my payments account?

Once the brand approves the content submission for the campaign, the funds will be transferred to your payments account (assuming you've set one up). 

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Ad / Content Types

Q: What type of ads or sponsored content can I create for my episodes?

Here are the types of ads or sponsored content that brands can ask for: 

Host-read sponsorships:

15-90 second ad spots read in your own voice, which makes them more engaging and less disruptive for listeners than traditional commercials. The goal is to integrate a brand, product, or service into an episode in an authentic and genuine way. 

Pre-roll ad:

Usually a 15 – 30 ad at the beginning of the podcast episode.

Mid-roll ad:

Usually a 60-90 ad towards the middle of the podcast episode when the listeners are already engaged.

Post-roll ad:

15 – 30 seconds at the end of the podcast. 

Native sponsorships fit the content/topic of your episode, making them more authentic for brands and engaging for listeners.

A guest interview is when you bring on a friend, influencer, celebrity, fellow podcaster, or someone relevant to interview on your show.

A creative integration is when a brand, product, or service wants the host to seamlessly integrate their company to the show’s episode and audience in a compelling and interesting way.

A topical discussion is when a brand, product, or service wants the host to discuss a topic related to their brand, product, or service. For example, a show could do a topical discussion about green energy or the value of electric vehicles for an episode sponsored by Tesla.

In a review, the host reviews a product during an episode and discusses their experience with their audience. 

A giveaway & contest is when a brand, product, or service wants to share promotional codes, products, and freebies with the host’s engaged listeners.

A Roundtable Panel is a group discussion where a podcaster and expert guests debate and educate on a chosen topic related to the brand's industry and include a brand in the discussion.

Q: Can I improvise in an ad read?

Many brands/sponsors are fine with improvisation in an ad read, and prefer that you sound natural and authentic instead of like you're reading a script. 

However, some brands may have a script or exact message written out that they'd like you to read, so it's best to discuss this with each brand/sponsor if they don't explicitly state one way or the other in their campaign details.

Q: Can I include more than one pre or mid-roll in each episode?

Currently it is only possible to include one of each in an episode, but we will be rolling out an update soon that will allow you to include up to three pre-roll or mid-roll ads per episode.

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Podcorn Analytics Prefix

Q: What is the Podcorn analytics prefix?

The Podcast analytics prefix is a short URL prefix ( https://pdcn.co/e/ ) that can be added to your show's episode audio file URLs through most podcast hosting providers. It allows our system to keep track of how many download requests are being sent to your episodes.

Q: Can I still use Podcorn if my podcast host or hosting setup doesn't support the Podcorn analytics prefix?

Yes, as long as you can provide episode download data via screenshots, that will suffice for most sponsors. 

If your current podcast hosting platform or setup does not provide any analytics for your podcast, we'd recommend moving your show to a hosting platform that does. You can see a list of Apple's recommended podcast hosting platforms here

Q: How can I be sure I set up the Podcorn Prefix correctly?

Visit the Settings page in your Podcorn dashboard, then click on the Analytics tab. You should see a green message that says Connected. 

Please note: It may take up to 24 hours for your dashboard to update after you've set up the Podcorn analytics prefix. 

Q: The number of listens in my Podcorn account is higher than the number of listens or downloads in my podcast hosting platform. Why is that?

This has to do with how download requests are filtered and reported. Without getting into too much detail, if your podcast host is currently IAB compliant or certified, they are filtering out some of the download requests made to your episodes in order to meet the podcast measurement guidelines created by the Interactive Advertising Bureau (the IAB).

Podcorn is currently working on getting IAB certification to ensure the most accurate analytics reporting possible, but in the meantime, we recommend referring to and reporting your hosting platform's downloads numbers when talking to sponsors or potential sponsors about your show.

Q: Which podcast hosting platforms are IAB certified?

To see a current list of podcast hosting platforms that are IAB certified, visit https://iabtechlab.com/compliance-programs/compliant-companies/#podcast.

Q: What is the difference between IAB compliance and IAB certification?

IAB compliant means that the podcast hosting platform follows IAB's measurement guidelines for podcast analytics measurement and reporting.

IAB certified means that the host has been through a third-party review to ensure that their system exactly meets IAB's measurement guidelines. Certification is widely considered to be the better of the two. 

Learn more about IAB compliance and certification here. 

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Managing a Podcorn Account

Q: Can I delete my account anytime?

We'd be happy to delete your account if you'd like, but you could also just leave it open in case you'd like to browse new opportunities in the future. 

If you'd prefer we completely delete your account, please let our support team know by sending an email to support@podcorn.com, they'd be happy to take care of that for you.

Q: How do I update change the RSS feed URL for my show in Podcorn?

If you move your show to a new podcast hosting platform or need to change the RSS feed URL for your show for any other reason, please let our support team know by sending an email to support@podcorn.com. Please include the name of your show and your show's new RSS feed URL.  

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Have a different question that you didn't see answered here? Let us know! You can always send questions or feedback to support@podcorn.com.

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