How to Setup a Patreon that Supports You Full-Time [Ep. #21]
Many YouTube creators, podcasters, and other online creators are earning a full-time income from their patrons on Patreon. How you setup your Patreon page can make a big difference in how quickly your Patreon page grows and supports you and the content you’re creating for them. Peter Hollens has been successful on Patreon since the very beginning of the platforms existence and joins us to evaluate the Video Creators patreon page as well as show us how to setup Patreon in a way that makes it possible for us use it as a meaningful revenue source.
Patreon is a pretty substantial part of your income. It supports you and what you are doing. It is mind blowing that my entire family can live off of my Patreon page alone.
Tips for setting up your Patreon:
Patreon is all about supporting your subscribers as they support you. Viewers who use your Patreon should find additional support from your content. It is also all about finding a way yo be supported financially so that you can continue to spread your message and change lives.
Have Fewer Reward Tiers
Peter Hollens mentions that the Video Creators Patreon only has two reward tiers that are both, in his opinion , decently low considering the amount of information and the options that can be offered as someone that has digital products, someone who can consult.
I would, literally, sit down and brainstorm every single one of those different modules in your courses that you’ve ever done. Think about the possibility of breaking those up. Think about the possibility of, each week, giving access to one module week two– a tier that’s like, $15 and above. I mean, basically, like, turning this into a subscription service that provides a tremendous amount of value. But unlike when people can go to your site and just buy these things in bulk, you’re giving them to them like, once a week.
I would make it so that you have like, a $3, a $10, something around like a $25– so maybe something around $50, $75– and then maybe something more substantial around $150.
There is a point where you have too many reward tiers. I would grow them slowly. Don’t just throw down nine reward tiers, because people get overwhelmed by too many options. I would say, five is a really good number.
Create Conversation When You Adjust Patreon Support Tiers
The conversation needs to go like, “this is what I’m thinking, how does that make you feel? Is it OK if we do this? And if everyone’s up in a huge uproar, then maybe you just need to start a different tier. And you can bite the bullet on that. And put a cap. So moving forward, no one else can get that. And you can slowly push that cap out once people stop supporting.
Decide on Monthly or Per Creation Pledge
On Patreon, there’s two pay options:
You can pay someone on a monthly, recurring fee.
Or you can pay them every time they publish a new piece of content. I think this actually allows there to be more transparency between supporter and creator.
So if I’m going to switch to a per piece of content, that’s more motivation for me to make sure I keep getting that content out, because I don’t get paid if I don’t. Just by listening to you talk, it feels less like I’m paying my monthly Netflix bill. Instead, it’s more personable. Like, I’m paying for what I’m actually getting each time.
I feel like this entire experience, from a crowd-funding perspective and why this it’s so different than a Kickstarter, Indiegogo, is that this is all about really gracefully and handholding your community. And your fostering a community. And I think that’s a much better way to do it.
It’s transparent. Everything needs to be transparent and real.
Thanking vs. Rewarding Patrons
I think the entire concept of pushing people behind a pay wall and alluding to more content isn’t very successful. Rather, thank your current Patreons who are supporting the content. And then just say, if you guys what to know more about it, click right here.Also, I think a no-brainer level of support on a reward, is including people’s names at the end of the video, it’s almost like they’re an associate producer of your content. So I would say, you could very easily have a per content– like a $50, or a $25, or a $35, or a $40 of– have your name at the end of every one of my videos.
Welcome Video – Short and Sweet
Long intro’s make your Patreon feel like just another YouTube channel. In the end, your message gets lost, because just like a normal video on YouTube, people’s attention spans are similar. But my point is, get to the point, tell them really quickly, what’s Patreon, what your goal is on it, and then, probably, what they can get from it. And I think you need to be in and out in under two minutes. And I think there’s multiple great examples that Patreon has, actually, given as demo videos.
OK, let me tell you a little something about, what I feel, the human mind desires. You need to have a goal that is well within your initial reach of where you are and, in my opinion, you should already have goals that you’ve already achieved. I think it’s just one of those things that people want to see you growing. It makes them happy if they’re already your Patreons. And also, the people who are about to be your Patreons, they want to help you make it to your next goal.
Yes. Can you, really quickly, go to patreon.com/peterhollens. So number one, I have links on the top right of my page. I just think on every social media site of any kind, you should always have that. If you scroll down on my page you will notice how on my Patreon I have images, because I think it’s a tiny bit more tantalizing to the eye to see that. And see how I’m like, where your money goes– here’s a nice little– another image. Awesome rewards– here’s another image, another image.
If your Patreon campaign’s going to succeed, it’s going to succeed because you are a good community manager. It’s not going to succeed for any other reason. They don’t really care that much about all your rewards, because if they really did, they’re probably going to go support somebody on Kickstarter. I mean, yes, you’re going have super, super fans. But I just think it’s all about building a community, building that closeness, and you want to have that direct to supporter relationship.
Go to your dashboard and then go to engagement. I think you can see the health of a community on Patreon by how much they’re engaging. I think this is a no-brainer for anything. You can talk about the same stuff that you already know very well on YouTube. You can have tons of subscribers– blah, blah, blah– whether that’s you could associate that with Patreons and revenue on here.But if they’re not engaging, and that watch time isn’t very high. Let’s just make an example.So I would say, every single comment on Patreon, no matter what, should be responding to– every single one. And here’s the reason why. Because they’ve given you their credit card. And they’ve trusted that this relationship is one in which you’re going to pay attention to them.
Now let’s go to Patreon Exit Surveys. Some people will leave PAtreon because they feel that you were not giving them the attention they desire. Every single one of the people that left because you weren’t giving them enough attention, that is, literally, an unlimited amount of, not only revenue, but a tremendous relationship that you could have lost, that that person might have just introduced you to the head of marketing at Pepsi,. You never know.
You should always be paying attention to the exit surveys.
You should always be paying attention to your engagement level. You should always be paying attention to whether or not you’re gaining patrons month by month.
Another thing people can do is go to Declines.And by declines, these are credit card processing declines, for those of you guys who aren’t– you don’t know. So people pledged. But then the card was declined.I would attribute most of that to the fact that things happen. Cards get compromised. And a lot of the time you just need to– you kind of need to just email your Patreons and say, “hey, I just want you to know that I so appreciate your support. It’s absolutely amazing. But I wanted to let you know, your card’s been declined. And it’s totally fine if you can no longer support me. I totally understand that. If you’re having a financial burden, please, use your own money. You don’t need to give it to me. But I just wanted you to know”.And a lot of the time, you’ll pick up 4% or 5% by just going through all your declines. And you can go– if you go to your Patreon Manager, which is in your top right. View All Patreons– You may or may not want to go there, because then you open up emails. But it’ll open up the list of people. And it will show you what’s declined. So you can do a really quick Command-F and type in Declined. And you can see the number of declines versus your Patreons. And then you can just, literally, just email those people.
Perfect. Well, thank you so much for all this. I really do appreciate it. I’d love to hear from you guys in the comments, if you’re watching this on YouTube, what your thoughts are on using Patreon for your own channel and how you’re using it. Any tips and ideas that you feel like could be helpful for me as I’m developing my own Patreon page better with your guys’ help, and with Peter’s help, and such.
And any tips and ideas you guys have, share them with each other. I know you’ll learn a lot from each other. Peter, the community here on this channel is awesome. I am learning from them all the time.
And if you guys want to support me on Patreon as I start working through a lot of this stuff and figuring it out, and you want to see the process I’m going through. With your help, maybe I can serve you guys as best as I can over on Patreon. And with your feedback, and interaction, and everything, looking forward to doing that with you guys. So if you want to join me over there, that would be awesome.
And supporting this work that I’m trying to do for you guys to help you grow your audiences, so that you can become financially sustainable and use that sustainability to reach people and impact their lives.
So thanks for hanging out. Subscribers, if this is your first time here, we’re all about helping you guys do that. And I will see you guys again soon. Thanks, bye.
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