In this how-to guide, we’ll walk you through each step in the Glow page builder so that you can accept payment and distribute exclusive podcast episodes such as behind the scenes conversations, extended guest interviews, live Q&As or livestream episodes, “deep dive” episodes, and more to your members.
If you want to collect donations without offering an exclusive podcast in return, see our step-by-step guide to building a listener support page with Glow. If you’re looking for something else, contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Step 1: Choose how you want to monetize your podcast
On the offering page, select exclusive content.
You’ll also be asked for two RSS feeds: your main podcast RSS feed and your premium podcast RSS feed. For some background on setting up a premium podcast RSS feed, see the next section:
How to integrate an exclusive podcast with Glow
When your listeners sign up and become members, they get access to your exclusive podcast. But where does that exclusive podcast come from?
To integrate an exclusive podcast with Glow, you first need to create a new podcast using a podcast host like Libsyn, Transistor, Buzzsprout, etc. When your listeners join your membership, they’ll get access to this show in their podcast player of choice.
Add the RSS feed for this new show to the Glow page builder’s offering page described above.
Keys to creating your exclusive podcast
- Your exclusive podcast must be configured in your podcast host so that podcast players like Apple Podcasts and Overcast do not add it to their libraries. This way, your member-only podcast will remain for members to see only. Here is more information about private feeds. For help making your RSS feed private, contact us at email@example.com.
- Your exclusive podcast’s cover art should be slightly different that the cover art for your regular show so that members can tell the difference in their podcast players.
Step 2: Add your podcast’s details
On the details page you’ll enter some basic information about your podcast and a headline to incentivize your listeners to sign up to receive your exclusive content.
Your Glow URL
This will be the short link that you announce on your show. Choose something short and easy to spell that’s relevant to your show.
Here are some examples of Glow URLs:
- Acquired: glow.fm/acquired
- Food Heals: glow.fm/foodheals
- Founders: glow.fm/founders
- Rogue Squadron Podcast: glow.fm/roguepodsquad
Podcast website URL
If you have a website or a dedicated page on your podcast host’s website, link to it here to provide easy access for your listeners. Do not link to your RSS feed URL here.
Your headline will introduce your listeners to your exclusive content. Oftentimes podcasts will create a title for their membership that is reflected in their headline, as well as their podcast cover art and elsewhere.
Here are some examples of headlines:
- Acquired: “Become a Limited Supporter”
- Food Heals: “Go Behind the Scenes of Food Heals”
- Founders: “Become a Misfit”
- Rogue Squandron Podcast: “Secret Squadron”
Step 3: Choose your pricing
On this page, you have the flexibility to choose how you will ask your listeners to pay for your membership. As you select your options, the changes will be reflected on your draft page to the right of the screen.
Select a payment method
To charge your members on a monthly or yearly basis, select recurring subscriptions. This option is recommended for memberships with ongoing benefits.
If you’re offering a one-off or limited-run series of content, you might want to choose one-time payments.
By enabling Monthly Payments, you allow your listeners to subscribe to a monthly contribution amount. In most cases we recommend charing $5 to $10 per month.
By enabling yearly payments, you allow your listeners to subscribe to a yearly donation amount. Typically, a yearly payment is about ten times the amount of your monthly payment, giving your annual contributors a discount.
You can allow your listeners to contribute however much they want on a monthly, yearly, or one-time basis.
Allow Free Trials
Allowing Free Trials would be a great way to lower the barrier to entry for for your potential members, allowing them to try out your exclusive content before committing to a monthly plan.
Step 4: Creating a benefits page
You’ll have the chance to explain to your listeners the awesome benefits that they could get by subscribing to your membership. If you’d like an in-depth explainer on some of the pros and cons of the various types of exclusive content that our successful podcast partners have used in the past, take a look at this link on the Glow Support and Resources page.
A successful benefits page will clearly lay out the perks your listeners will get when they sign up for your exclusive content. Play to your strengths and your audience when you’re thinking about the kinds of exclusive content that you can offer and that you will be able to sustain in the long-term.
Whether your exclusive content is bringing you in closer touch with your audience (livestream Q&As, access to your podcast community messaging group), showcasing your expertise (deep dive episodes, extended guest interviews), or just giving your listeners a peek behind the scenes of your podcast, you can’t go wrong as long as your exclusive content makes it worth it for your listeners.
See below for examples of two Glow podcasters’ benefits page and how the pages are structured to market their exclusive content in a unique way:
Step 6: Design the look and feel of your page
Glow’s design page puts even more power into your brand by allowing full customization and control.
Podcast cover art
You have the choice to add in your default podcast cover art to the top of your Glow page. To include your podcast’s cover art, check the box under podcast cover art titled “Show your podcast’s default cover art.”
You must have entered your main podcast RSS feed in step one to display your podcast cover art.
The hero image is the backdrop for your podcast cover art and your entire Glow page. Choose one of the pre-selected Glow options available or upload your own image to serve as your Glow page’s background.
Your main color affects your header color and button background color. This small touch can go a long way to bring your brand to the forefront.
Take a look at examples of some evocative and eye-popping designs that other Glow-ers have used for their exclusive content pages:
Step 7: Connect your bank account
Glow uses Stripe to make it easy for your listeners to support you. So we can pay out those contributions to you, enter your bank account information at Stripe.
You must go through these payment steps whether or not you already have an account with Stripe.
On the earnings page, indicate how your podcast business is structured so that we can link your Glow page to your donation portal.
If you are unsure of which business structure describes your podcast, see this Stripe article for more information.
At this point, you will be redirected to the Stripe website to set up an account and link your Glow page to our monetization system. Follow the steps on the Stripe platform to initialize your payment method.
Step 8: Review your page and add finishing touches
On this page, you will review what your Glow page looks like thus far. If you haven’t added your main podcast RSS feed before, add it now in the section at the top of the page where it says “Main Podcast RSS Feed”.
Next, click the box next to “I agree to Glow’s Terms of Service” and you’ll be all set.
Step 9: Dashboard
Now you’ll be redirected to your dashboard, where you can see your total listeners, monthly revenue, and annual revenue on the left side of the page. If you need to edit your page in any way, click on the Edit button on the right of the page to change your Glow page. You can also download a CSV file containing a list of your subscribers.
Now that your page is built, it’s time to launch your podcast’s exclusive content program to the world. Here are some best practices for crafting your call-to-action.