YouTube is offering podcasters up to $300,000 to film their podcast shows, according to Bloomberg and as reported by The Verge.

Host to several popular podcasts itself, like the H3 Podcast and Full Send Podcast, YouTube is offering individual podcast shows $50,000 and podcast networks up to $300,000 to potentially fund video episodes and other video-based content.

YouTube has been leaning into its podcast business for a while now. From 2018 to 2019, popular YouTubers like Emma Chamberlain and Logan Paul launched podcasts, some of which the creators turned into video versions on their dedicated channels.

In September 2021, YouTube hired Kai Chuk as director of podcasting and next-gen media partnerships. Around the same time, YouTube launched its own podcast called The Upload: The Rise of the Creator Economy,” to spotlight creators and behind-the-scenes moments of their thriving businesses.

Shortly after, it started letting all Canadian users listen to audio without having the app open, a feature only YouTube Premium subscribers could access previously.

Couple these efforts with the growing popularity of music video streaming on YouTube. As of November 2020, YouTube’s global head of music Lyor Cohen said that more than 2 billion people visit YouTube each month to experience music and that YouTube Music has more than 70 million official tracks — more than any other music service.

According to a study from Futuri Media and the University of Florida, YouTube is ahead of major podcast players in certain markets, with 43 percent of monthly podcast listeners saying they went to YouTube for podcasts from 2018 to 2019, ahead of both Apple (34 percent) and Spotify (23 percent). 

As podcast usage in the US grows, YouTube could be looking to capture more of this audio-only audience in a new way. In 2021, eMarketer predicted 40 percent of US internet users would listen to a podcast at least once per month. And last year, for the first time, more than half of all digital audio listeners in the US would become podcast listeners, the firm forecasted.