Patreon 101: Understanding How it Works and Launching Your First Patreon Page 85

Patreon 101: Understanding How it Works and Launching Your First Patreon Page

In this guide I’ll cover all the things you need to know about Patreon – a crowdfunding platform for creators – so that you can successfully and quickly get started with it, create your first Patreon page in no time, and start building a following and making money from your work.

Let’s start with the basics. I’ll begin with the definition of the platform and what it’s about. Then, I’ll move onto how it works exactly.

After that you’ll learn how to set up a proper account and what to include in your Patreon page, together with what goals to set and what rewards to give to people who pledge and become your fans.

By the end of this post, you’ll be ready to head over to patreon.com and launch your creator’s page in under 10 minutes.

What is Patreon?

If you’re in online business, following people doing that, or just like stumbling upon new platforms and seeing what they offer,  you’ve probably heard that crowdfunding sites such as Kickstarter are getting quite popular.

Well, Patreon is one such site too, helping artists keep doing their work, but also getting paid for it on a regular basis.

I first heard about this on one episode of the Smart Passive Income podcast, and decided to pay more attention to it as I love businesses based on passion.

Patreon’s founder himself is an artist who wanted to make a living from what he was doing online. In his case, YouTube videos back in 2013.

So Jack Conte partnered up with Sam Yam to create what became the place to go for artists wanting to turn their craft into a real business, build an audience and form meaningful relationships with their fans.

But also it’s the favorite place of the viewers, listeners and readers who are there to support the creators whose work is shared on Patreon.

How Does Patreon Work?

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In a nutshell, you go to the site, create and launch your Patreon page (more on that below), and then have the chance to get subscribers (your patrons), who’ll pay for the privilege to get access to the next thing you create.

What makes the experience unique is that you – the creator – can finally keep doing what you do best, and know it will be appreciated by people not just once, but every next time you release something new.

That means exclusiveness too.

You can present yourself and your work in the best way possible, and Patreon as a platform lets you do so much more after that.

You can create goals (and thus keep both yourself motivated to create more, and your fans encouraged to keep coming for more, and to pledge)  and give special treatment to fans based on how much they’ve chosen to pay.

The site lets you do that by using the subscription-based business model.

As we know, recurring revenue is the holy grail of online business.

Who is Patreon For?

You can succeed with creating a Patreon page (or even become a top patreon), if you are an artist and a creator of some kind.

Most people who perform well on the funding platform are YouTubers, musicians, writers, podcasters, developers, and more.

The categories of the content that’s present on Patreon range from Comics, Animation and Photography, to Drawing, Science and Theater.

Setting Up a Patreon Account

In this guide, I’m talking about an artist, or anyone creating some type of content that can be shared online, who’s looking for a new platform to connect with people and get paid for it consistently, of for each new work of art.

So if you’re just looking to become someone’s fan, obviously that won’t help.

Patreon is yet another of the many possibilities the Internet offers to creators to make money online and keep doing what they love.

If you’re one of those, read on.

Hit sign up on the Patreon homepage and fill the necessary fields, or do it directly with Facebook.

Once you’re in, head over to their logo in the upper right corner, and click ‘Create on Patreon’.

You’ll be taken to the homepage again where you can click the ‘Start My Page’ button.

how to sign up for patreon, create a page, share your work, get patrons and make money

Now here’s the real deal.

Creating Your First Patreon Page

The Basics

The site will guide you through the first steps. Which are confirming the name you want to use, sharing what you’re creating, choosing the category that fits you best, stating you’re not going to share any adult content, and being welcomed by the founder of Patreon with a short video.

what to create on patreon.com

You should take your Patreon page seriously, as it’s the tool you use to make a good first impression. And that’s how you’ll grab the attention of potential fans before they’ve got the chance to see your work.

What to Include in Your Patreon Profile

Video content works great here. And so does a well-thought out bio section.

But be careful not to overdo these.

Keep it to the point, share what you think is important (make sure to include what you’re creating and what people will get once they become your patrons).

Here’s one good example of that:

crash course patreon page

These guys are creating educational videos, and are doing a pretty good job.

They have a 2-minute welcome video, followed by a few paragraphs of text saying who they are and why they need their patrons’ help.

Of course, they know how to produce video content the right way. But even if you don’t, it’s still the best way to form a relationship on a more personal level, and be checked out by people who skip the text and just have a minute to decide whether they like you or not.

Fill in The Details of Your Patreon Page

Fill in The Details of Your Patreon Page

Here’s your chance to add a profile pic and a cover photo.

Then, link your social accounts and choose a username that will become your Patreon url.

The video and bio section we talked about are in the ‘About’ section.

Have some content ready for your first pledges.

If you write articles, like Tim from WaitButWhy, put up a few right after you launch your Patreon page so that there’s something to offer for the first enthusiasts.

Have special rewards.

The next section in your settings is ‘Rewards’. And it’s a key component of successfully launching your Patreon page as an artist and getting funded in the first month.

Here the platform allows you to give something special to those who become your patrons. After all, they’ve decided to invest their time and money in your work, and deserve to receive even more than what you’ve initially promised.

You can choose from behind the scenes access, live hangouts, sneak peeks, a private community, exclusive tutorials and more.

In fact, you don’t need to brainstorm Patreon rewards ideas as there are already enough suggested to you.

Once you click to add another one, you’ll see this screen:

Patreon rewards

According to research done by the team behind Patreon, creators with more than 2 reward levels are earning more in their first month.

Moving onto Patreon Goals

Here’s where you tell your patrons what’s coming next, and can get them excited by being part of it.

A good rule of thumb is to have more than 1 goal.

If you visit the Patreon page of the Daily Tech News Show, for instance, you’ll see that even though having close to 4,500 patrons, there are still solid goals going on there.

The current one states this:

ROUND TABLE SHOW

A monthly round table discussion of evergreen tech issues with a rotating cast of hosts drawn from DTNS Contributors and hosts.

The goals you set can be divided into 2 main categories: money-based and community-based.

Once you’re done with that element of your Patreon page, you get the chance to add a thank you message or video, and set up payment options.

Next, you can preview and launch your official Patreon page, before you start inviting people to check it out and see what you’re offering.

Conclusion

There are many more tips we can talk about, strategies to get more patrons and make more money, or explore what some of the top patreons out there have done that changed their financial situation and future.

But this is a get started Patreon guide. And it’s all you need to know to be ready to take action right away.

So, please, head over to patreon.com now and begin with the sign up process.

I believe success with online business comes after you’ve explored different platforms a bit. There is one for you, where you’ll get a big number of fans by doing what you’ve always done – creating what you’re passionate about.

If you still haven’t monetized your passion, this is yet another opportunity that can turn into something big for you.

Even if you’ve tried other crowdfunding sites like Patreon, you still need to give it a chance as it’s something different and made with the artist in mind.

Here’s to you and launching your first Patreon page in less than 10 minutes!

Are you ready to start a blog?

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By starting a website with them through my link, I’ll earn a small commission. This adds no cost to you, but helps keep this site sustainable.

If you wanna know how exactly to start your first blog, here’s a guide for you.
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The Five Elements of Flawless Customer Experience 9

The Five Elements of Flawless Customer Experience

Providing a flawless customer experience is the ultimate goal for any business.

There’s a lot that goes into creating a customer experience that keeps your clients coming back for more. In fact, there’s so much involved that it can almost seem overwhelming.

However, providing a flawless customer experience becomes much easier when you approach the task through these five distinct elements:

Time
Understanding
Ownership of Emotions
The Unexpected
Follow-Through

Time

When it comes to your customers’ satisfaction, time is essential. Think of how a great experience at a new restaurant quickly sours if you’re left waiting for your food to arrive. Think of how your excitement over a great department store sale turns into frustration as you stand in line for what seems like hours.

Time is your most valuable resource and it is up to you to make sure you’re using your customers’ time wisely.

This is why restaurants have comfortable waiting areas with drinks and appetizers, or why airports have lounges with restaurants, shops, and even bars.

If your customers are being forced to wait for a service, make them feel as if their time spent is not wasted. The more positive drivers you offer customers, the less likely they are to grow dissatisfied with their experience.

Think of how you can implement this in your own business. Are there places where you can help fill customers’ time? Are there places where technology can be used to cut down on the time it takes to complete a task? Remember, it’s the customers’ time that should be valued, not your own.

Understanding

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You must understand what your customers want, when they want it, and how.

While this may seem daunting, getting a better understanding of your customers doesn’t take millions of dollars, complex data analytics, and a degree in psychology. Instead, all it takes is a simple look. Watch their process, engage with them, ask them questions, and listen to them.  

How are customers interacting with your product? What’s the first thing they do when they enter your store? What’s the last thing they do before they leave? How long are they spending in each department? Do you notice anything that hampers their experience?

Take a look at your competitors. How are your potential customers interacting with them? What does this business offer that you don’t or vice versa? What is your, as Harvard Business School professor Clayton M. Christensen says, “job to be done?” What are your customers hiring your product or service to accomplish? Understand why your users are turning to your products.

Ownership of Emotions

Many companies have already taken hold of their customers’ emotions, though cynically. Subliminal advertising is a key example. However, the ownership of emotions does not have to be cynical. When used correctly, it can be the “holy grail” for companies.

Owning emotions begins with the aforementioned ability to understand. When you truly understand a customer’s choices and then act to make the experience better, you’re building a relationship of trust. That trust is the foundation of emotional ownership.

One way to build this trust is to reduce the “emotional” noise that surrounds your customers. Let them know that, even on their worst day, your business or product is there for them and that it will be a constant in their lives.

Think of restaurants and the long wait times you have to endure when they’re busy. Think of how angry—or “hangry”—you feel as you stand around, waiting for your table, and listening to your stomach growl. However, think of how some restaurants are able to reduce that emotional noise by serving you finger foods and drinks as you wait.

Also, seek to understand what emotionally motivates your customers.

Why should they be motivated to visit your store or use your product? To feel confident? Free? Unique? Secure? Successful? Research shows that all human beings are motivated by one of those factors.

The Unexpected

Experiences become stronger and more memorable when they’re accompanied by an element of surprise. Surprise can be addictive, which will only keep your customers coming back for more.

Think about mailing your customers or clients small packages with gifts and swag. Everyone loves to get mail and everyone loves free stuff, especially when it’s least expected.

A surprise doesn’t have to be a huge flash mob (though it could be!). Hand out snacks at your store. Is it a cold day? Give your customers hot chocolate or warm punch. Is it a client’s birthday? Send a card! Even a small note of thanks for a customer’s business is a nice little surprise.

The most important thing to remember: simply be sincere and don’t become predictable. Chocolates on hotel pillows were once a great surprise for guests. However, now that their wow-factor has faded, hotels are continuously trying to get back to the “unexpected.”

Follow-Through

You’ve made promises and established goals. The only thing that’s left is to follow through on them. This starts with creating your mission statement, one that you, your employees, and your customers can commit to it. This will define your customer experience.

Your mission statement must promise to impact yourself/your business, the community, or the world. It may commit to impacting one, or all three. However, whatever it promises, you must follow through on. Your customers’ trust, and thus their experience, depends on it.

More about these five elements can be discovered in Unforgettable: Designing Customer Experiences that Stick, to be published in 2018.

***
Kyle H. David has made a career in technology and entrepreneurship for nearly 20 years. In 2001, he formed The Kyle David Group, now KDG. Over the past 16 years, KDG has grown at a rapid pace, attracting clients ranging from the United States Senate to major financial institutions, international nonprofits, and Division I universities.