How to make it easy for people to support you on Patreon
I've had my history adventuring blog on Patreon pretty much since Patreon began. Collecting old photos of Phoenix and posting them is my hobby, and professionally I'm a Graphic Designer. So I wanted to understand what Patreon is all about.
Patreon is a donation site. It's kinda like Crowd Funding, except that it's ongoing, and meant to encourage web creators by allowing people who support them with a monthly donation. It's kind of a tip jar, because it's for people who have been putting stuff for free on the web, and want to continue doing it, and spending less time doing other stuff.
I like the idea of Patreon. I first heard about it on the YouTube series SciShow, which always ends with a thank you to their Patreon supporters. So I signed up for Patreon, and started giving them a dollar a month. Yeah, I know a dollar isn't much, but it made me feel like a real supporter of the arts. I've since supported Dr. Jo (who does Physical Therapy videos), and "Today I Found Out", which is a wonderful YouTube video site that has a lot of fun and interesting information. Then I discovered something on Patreon that made it easier for people to support me, and more fun, too. It's the reward system.
Of course, the reward for supporting someone is the good feeling you get. But I remember the PBS pledge drives that offered something free if you donated at a certain level. Seems strange, but that's how human nature works. We like to be thanked for what we do, and we like to see it in a tangible way.
So I just added multiple tiers of rewards to my Patreon page. The first one, a dollar, just gets someone into the community, and they get the stuff I post on Patreon delivered to them. The higher tiers add something else, such as high resolution images, and "then and now" historic photos. I could, of course offer t-shirts, or something like that, but that includes getting people's addresses, mailing stuff, and that's not really something I'm interested in. It has to be digital, which as a Graphic Designer, is my specialty. No one has to give me their address to get a reward. When you sign in there, I don't get your email address.
Recently Patreon did a complete redesign of their website, and it looks like it's finally grown up. And since re-learning websites over and over and over is something I've been doing for a long time, I decided to poke around and see what's new. It suddenly struck me that adding a widget to my history adventuring blog that takes people to a page that allows them to support me, and choose their rewards, was the best thing to do.
Here is my History Adventuring blog, and the Patreon widget is on it now.
Posted by Brad Hall