September 2, 2018
Treating Patreon, and your subscribers, with respect
I like Patreon. I've been on it for two years and I have to admit when I first signed up I really had no idea what it was all about. But now I do, and it's very simple, it's about respect for yourself as a creator, and for the people who are subscribers, and who want to see your stuff.
Originally, I understood the concept to be a "tip jar", but it's really not. But it's not a replacement for a professional platform like a website that real pros use. It's for amateurs, and it's a great place to begin getting a feel for whether what you do has any real value to people out there. It's also a good place to start understanding the precious relationship between artists and the people who do more than "ooh and ahh", but who pay good money.
As an old marketing guy, and graphic designer, I'm often shocked by the lack of respect that many artists show to the most important people in their life, people who support them both emotionally and financially. I started doing freelance graphic designer in my early twenties, and my goal was to keep my promises, to deliver on deadlines, to get it right the first time. Of course I've not been perfect, but I've been darned good. My reputation for professionalism proceeded me, and I like that. People could count on me, and they recommended me.
As a graphic designer teacher I always included the importance of keeping the client in mind, to provide what they want, to deliver correctly, and on time. Promise a lot and deliver more has always been my motto! And it's really just a matter of respect, both for myself, and for my clients.
But I really was just "dabbling" on Patreon until this year. In the back of my mind was the thought that it was such a small amount of money that most people really didn't expect much. And then it hit me that any amount of money deserves respect, even the people who had signed up for a dollar a month. And my five dollars a month subscribers deserved even more value. I myself subscribe to various creators on Patreon, and I expect return for my money! It's only right.
People will only pay for what they value. And I'm not just talking about money here, people will invest their time, looking at your stuff. For many people, that's the best they can do, and really it's something of a compliment if someone reads your blog post, or watches your video, and gives a "like". If people are already doing that, and you're already creating stuff on a regular basis, I recommend that you consider putting it on Patreon. I really like the idea of creating things that appeal specifically to the people who like my stuff, and not giving a thought to advertising. Yes, I know that there's a lot more money out there in advertising, creating content that appeals very often to the most unpleasant side of human nature, but that's not for me. I like Patreon, and I like the people who subscribe to my stuff there.
Here is my Patreon page: Phoenix History Adventuring
Posted by Brad Hall