This past month I’ve had 4 different clients inquire about Patreon, and how they can use it to make money online with their business. So I thought I’d do a quick blog about Patreon this weekend, and tell you more about it! I’m including a link to my own Patreon, that I will be promoting in 2019! You can watch it grow as I get it started!
So.. What is Patreon?
Patreon is a platform that serves creators as well as their supporters, what people back-in-the-day called patrons. These patrons pay creatives a monthly fee for exclusive experiences and behind-the-scenes content. Creatives can regain their creative freedom and energize their fan base, while supporters – for a fee usually cheaper than a Netflix subscription – get first access to something they love.
Here are a few common questions about Patreon and how it works.
What Makes Patreon Special?
Creatives in any field can join the site. Visual artists, musicians, poets, and designers alike flood the pages, and that’s only scratching the surface of the kind of creatives who engage with the site. It also spans the experimental world, as well as the sciences. These creators offer exclusive access to original content in exchange for either a monthly subscription or a pay-per-post system. In this model, creatives are compensated for their art, while patrons get to experience the thrill of knowing about something brand new, as well as the excitement of contributing to the process. This creates a special connection between artist and supporter that is unique to Patreon.
How Does Patreon Differ From Crowd-funding?
You may be wondering how Patreon differs from sites like Kickstarter and GoFundMe. On paper, they sound somewhat similar. However, Patreon isn’t crowd-funding for a singular project. Rather, it’s a semi-permanent front seat to the art someone is making in a given season. The patrons are along for the ride, sometimes from the very beginning of the process. This enforces the special appeal of Patreon. It’s far more personal, connecting people organically over a common interest in particular art forms.
How Does Patreon Differ From Memberful?
If you are familiar with Memberful, you know that the concept is similar to Patreon. In recent months, Patreon bought Memberful. It didn’t see the smaller company as competition, but the two are sticking together as larger tech companies sniff around their growing market. For now, Memberful remains a similar (but independent) website. It’s possible that it could merge with Patreon in the future, but it won’t happen in the coming months. Both platforms allow creative professionals the opportunity to make a living by partnering with patrons (fans and supporters) in exchange for content.
I’ve Joined Patreon. How Can I Link Social Media?
To link Facebook to Patreon, log in to your Patreon account, click “settings” and then “account.” Under the account details, click the blue box that says, “connect to Facebook.” The prompt will likely look familiar. You will give Patreon permission to access segments of your profile, and then you’ll be connected. In the future, you can share posts directly to Facebook. From there, you can link to other social media platforms, like Instagram and Twitter. Much of the networking building on Patreon happens within the site. However, it maximizes a post’s reach to utilize social media. Plus, connecting your social media platforms as a Patreon creator can drive social media followers to your Patreon page where they might opt to become patrons.
Who Can Use Patreon?
The wonderful thing about Patreon is that anyone can join and become a creator. The only case in which you can be turned away from creating content is if you a working on a type of project that disagrees with Patreon’s principles and guidelines. No extreme violence or pornographic images. If you are doing something creative that is illegal, harmful, or rated XXX, Patreon isn’t the platform for your business.
Can You Be Kicked Off Patreon?
You can be removed from Patreon for bullying, harassing, threatening, or spamming others. It’s a respectful and creative space with guidelines in place to keep the site free of toxic behavior. Patreon also takes a strong stance against “doxing,” which is sharing some else’s personal information. Because this site is a place where creatives share content with patrons in a close-knit atmosphere, behavior that jeopardizes that trust is not in keeping with the company culture.
Is There a Way to Integrate Patreon With My WordPress Site?
Yes, there is! This plug-in provides everything you need to integrate Patreon and a WordPress site. It offers:
- Patrons-only content on your native site
- The ability to ask users to unlock content by subscribing to your Patreon
- Various ways to lock and unlock content from non-patrons
- Ability to lock some – but not all – of a post from non-patrons
- Customizable buttons, widgets, and banners that link info between Patreon and your WordPress.
Is Patreon Viable for Making a Living?
At the end of the day, a creator can’t force the public to be interested in his or her work. However, many people are living full time on the funds received through Patreon. It’s completely possible that you could, too. Some creators will naturally go viral, while others only have a few supporters. That’s part of what makes it a great site. As a patron, you could discover something completely under the radar while checking out something that’s already gaining momentum. Additionally, the site is a great way to build a community of like-minded people with similar niche interests. This leads to friendship, connection, and discovery. Whether you make more or less profit than expected, there’s nothing to lose from trying and everything to gain.
If you are a creative or a fan of the arts looking for an amazing opportunity to connect, Patreon could be the perfect place to start. Join me on Patreon today!