Thirty years ago, comedians had to fight for a few large slices of a small pie. In the ’90s, a few performers made millions as stars of network sitcoms, but most were left in the cold when comedy clubs started shutting down. Now the pie is bigger and slices more plentiful, which benefits everyone from Buress (who now draws paychecks as a star on three cable shows) down to the armies of unknown UCB performers. Podcasting is just one of the many ways by which comedians can develop a fan base, but over the last couple years, it’s also become one of the most lucrative — “many comedians could survive today with the revenue from their podcasts alone." Sachs says a podcast with 40,000 downloads per episode can gross well over $75,000 a year, and shows in the 100,000-download range can gross somewhere between $250,000 and $400,000.
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