The Cost of Editing a Podcast Yourself

the cost of editing a podcast by myself

Imagine you recorded 60 minutes of audio and have everything ready to put your show together.

Assuming industry averages – and that you already have a computer – what are the costs of doing the post-production of your own podcast?


Audacity: $0

Audacity is a multi-platform recording & editing program that has been around for more than two decades. It is the most popular free DAW among independent podcast editors.

Audacity will do most of what you want an editing program to do – and even some basic audio engineering processes.

There are other free programs, many that are better, but I believe Audacity has the smallest learning curve.

Download Audacity: www.audacityteam.org/download


iZotope RX8 Standard: $399

This is a one-time purchase of a program some have considered sorcery!

Some of the best, magical features are:

  • Breath Control
  • Mouth De-Click
  • De-reverb
  • De-ess
  • De-plosive
  • Voice De-noise
  • EQ

My audio quality went from a B- to an A after learning how to use RX.

Purchase iZotope RX: www.izotope.com/en/shop/rx-8-standard.html


Time: $60 (or $240 per month)

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, the average hourly wage was between $16.77 for Leisure & Hospitality and $42.57 for those in the Information industry.

For this example, we will assume an average hourly wage of $20 per hour (which is $41,600 annually for a full-time employee).

The average time it takes a podcaster to edit 60-minutes of audio is 3 hours. (Many claimed it was 4-7 hours, especially when first learning how to edit, but we’ll stick with 3 for this example.)

Instead of editing your podcast, you could be making money – so the Opportunity Cost is $60 ($20 per hour for 3 hours) – or $240 a month.

Note: Those 3 hours a week (12 hours a month), could be used to market your show, take care of personal issues, sleep – or any number of things that are more fun than editing a podcast. The Opportunity Cost is real – even if you can’t put a dollar amount on it


Total cost of your first 12 episodes

According to Podcast Industry Insights, only 675,000 shows have 10 or more episodes.

675k 10 or more eps

For this example, we will assume you will incur the costs above to edit your first 12 episodes (3 months if publishing weekly).

  • Editing program Audacity: $0
  • Audio repair software RX8: $399
  • Opportunity Cost x12: $720

Total cost to edit yourself: $1,119


Cost of hiring a Podcast Editor

A 2020 survey of indie podcast editors found the *average price charged to fully produce a 60-minute recording and have it ready to upload to your podcast media host was $133.

One could assume the estimated cost for your first 12 episodes would be $1,596.

So the question you need to answer:

Is it worth it to spend $477 more to get essentially 36 hours of your life back?

We can look at it another way: $477 / 36 = $13.25 more an hour

Spend $1,119 yourself to do all the work yourself, or an extra $13.25 a week to outsource it to a qualified contractor.

Which one will it be?


What about the next 12 episodes?

My example above isn’t perfect. We didn’t include the cost of your time to find an editor and begin providing them the materials to begin working together.

We also didn't accurately estimate how long it would take you to learn how to use Audacity or RX – or whatever software you use. So let's call it even 🙂

If you edit your podcast yourself then you don’t have to spend any more money on software.

The Opportunity Cost remains $60 an episode, or $660 for 12 episodes.

Outsourcing to your Podcast Editor will still cost you $1,596 for the next 12 episodes.

That is a HUGE investment, but one that busy people are glad to pay.


Extra 3 hours a week

It takes A LOT of time and effort to make a podcast successful.

Instead of editing a podcast, you get to spend your extra 3 hours doing other things to make your podcast successful:

  • Find and book great guests
  • Promote/market your show to more people
  • Interact with listeners via social media, email, or Clubhouse 🙂
  • Create products or design services to be marketed to listeners
  • Be a guest on other podcasts

What can you do to grow your audience in 3 hours a week?


How to find a Podcast Editor

I run the largest community of Podcast Editors and have a process to help you find the right one for your needs.

Instead of posting in a Facebook group and getting dozens of DMs and questions/comments from people you don’t know anything about, my process will help you quickly sift through those who are serious and best qualified to work on your show.

Step 1: Create an online application

This can easily be done with a Google Form.

  1. Go to drive.google.com and log in with your gmail address
  2. Click on New
  3. Select Google Forms > Blank Template
  4. Enter a title
  5. Enter a description of what an editor will be working with (length of recordings, how many files/speakers, etc)
  6. Make sure your form is accepting email addresses: Click on the gear symbol, then check “Collect email addresses” and save
  7. Add as many questions (new fields) as you like
  8. When finished, send me a link to the form: Click the purple “Send” button, click on the link symbol, then copy the URL
  9. Send me a short note about your show along with th

Get ideas from my Template
https://forms.gle/ahdMYSousM2GkD5HA

Step 2: Send me the online information

I will share your application with members of the Podcast Editor Academy.

If you don’t find what you are looking for within 24-48 hours then let me know. I will share your form with more than 6,400 podcast editors. You are certain to find someone.

Step 3: Review applicants

Go into your form and click “Responses”.

You can review in a number of ways, but my favorite is to download a spreadsheet. Click on the three dots next to the green icon with a + symbol and then “Download responses (.csv)”

Here you can scroll through, sort, filter, whatever you want to quickly review all the Podcast Editors who want to work with you.

Step 4: Contact the best fit

Contact the one, two, or three best people and set up discovery calls.

You are in control.


I hope this process helps you find a great team member, create a better product, and get some of your life back!

Happy podcasting!

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