One Aspect of Podcast Business May Be Surprising

Bloomberg: Guests sometimes shell out tens of thousands of dollars to appear on a show
By John Johnson,  Newser Staff
Posted Aug 7, 2022 2:15 PM CDT
One Aspect of Podcast Business May Be Surprising
Stock image   (Getty/Ronstik)

Ashley Carman of Bloomberg is out with a report that might be surprising to anyone who listens to podcasts. It turns out the industry has a business quirk—podcast guests sometimes pay lots of money for the privilege of appearing on a show. As in, $50,000 or more in some cases. Typically, these would be shows that deal with wellness, crypto, and business, writes Carman. For example, Dave Asprey, host of The Human Upgrade, says he charges guests an average of $50,000 to appear, though he adds that most shows do not feature paid guests and that those who do appear are in sync with the "biohacking" show's mission. Each program ends with a disclosure that the show may financially benefit from products discussed. However, the whole subject of how such disclosures are handled industry-wide is a little squishy.

After Bloomberg reached out to The Skinny Confidential show about the practice, Dear Media CEO Michael Bosstick "recorded disclosures and inserted them into the old episodes," writes Carman. The company can charge up to $40,000 for a guest appearance. Carman lays out how the hefty fee actually has the potential to pay off in what amounts to advertising, given that the podcasts might get downloaded millions of times. The piece includes a quote from media lawyer Craic Delsack, who thinks programs in general should do a better job of transparency. “As someone who’s making money for that type of advertorial content, it should be disclosed,” he says. “It’s just good practice and builds trust with the podcaster. It can’t be the Wild West.” (Read the full story.)

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