What is Patreon and how does it work
In these uncertain times many people fear for their future and even more so, the economic aftermath of quarantine. Millions have been left unemployed or with large pay cuts and amongst the hardest hit are artists. Dancers, podcasters, comedians, artists, musicians, actors, yoga instructors, painters and many more have been drawn to the online platform Patreon. With Patreon, you can take back creative control, gain financial stability and still keep your artistic autonomy.
What is Patreon?
Patreon is an online platform that helps you to build a relationship with supportive and engaged fans. You can offer them exclusive deals, content and accessibility in exchange for a monthly subscription or payment every time you release new content. It is a great way to generate regular income from your work, allows you to connect directly with your audience, gaining better insight from their opinions and allows you to maintain full control and freedom over your creative choices. They pay you directly (no middle man), for a service that you love to provide.
What you get as the creative artist?
- The best thing about Patreon, is that you, the artist and creator, take full control of your business and your finances. You can develop a steady income and still do what you love.
- Patreon provides its members with a blog, featuring articles on a range of subjects and helping artists stay connected with each other, which is more important than ever while everyone works in self-isolation at home.
- There is also a detailed Patreon U section, which is filled with tips and tricks for setting up your Patreon account, how to find work-life balance, how best to reach your patrons and how to maximise the benefits of the features made available to you.
- There are numerous tools and resources accessible to members of Patreon to help you in your creative process and also to connect with your patrons. Amongst these are numerous apps offered for creators’ use, some of which include Vimeo, Wordpress, Mailchimp, Discord, Sonix and more.
- Patreon provides a section called Starter kits to all of its members, divided into sections by creative discipline from video creators to writers and everything in between. Packed full of ideas and help on how to get started, this section will point you in the right direction on your journey and help ensure you attract patrons and that your business is a success.
Important information about fees and pricing
The good news with Patreon and what makes it so attractive to artists, is that it is completely free to get started. They only succeed if you succeed and therefore only take a small percentage of your earnings, once you’ve established yourself and started earning on Patreon - there are no payments in advance. Once you have an income on Patreon, there are 3 categories in which users can fall into; Lite, Pro and Premium.
- Lite takes 5% of your monthly income on Patreon and offers your creator page, communication tools and workshops
- Pro takes 8% of your monthly income on Patreon and offers the same features of lite plus analytics and insights, special promo tools and more
- Premium takes 12% of your monthly income on Patreon, offers all the features of Pro plus dedicated coaching and support for creators and other features that save you time and reward your patrons.
You will find more information on pricing here
What you can offer your Patrons
- Access to your business e.g. concerts, films, special podcasts, video clips, recordings, tips and tricks, insider information
- Recognition in the form of live shout outs, their name in credits
- Collaborations and interactive audience feedback
- Patron-only shows
- Early access to new content
- Livestreams on various social media platforms
- Discounts and more