The Patreon Mission Statement is, “Our mission? Oh, nothing short of helping every creator in the world achieve sustainable income. We’re making this happen by building the best platform for creators to make money, run their creative businesses, and connect with the fans who matter most”.
I’ve heard a bit about Patreon, mainly from the several webcomic artists I follow. (You should check it out, it’s a phenomenal literary genre). Up until recently, I hadn’t given much thought to what Patreon actually was or who actually uses it.
The way that Patreon works is that the patrons pay to subscribe to their favourite creators. This subscription gives them sneak peeks, behind the scene information, amazing extras, and so much more.
Patreon is a way for creators to create completely freely. The ownership is completely the creators as is the marketing.
If a creator wants to deal with ads, brands or sponsors, then that is completely fine. There are no contracts so you can create whatever and however, you like. Patreon takes on the other stuff so all you have to do is create. They deal with patron questions, declined payments, patron payments, and fraud issues. The only cost is approximately 10%, 5% that goes to Patreon and an average of 5% for transaction fees. The creator keeps 90%. An average patron pays their chosen creator about $7 a month. It doesn’t sound like much but depending on how many patrons you have, it makes a big difference. Within 3 years the number of creators making at least $100 each month rose from 13 in 2013, to 7,960 in 2016.
As far as the creators themselves, Patreon facilitates creators of all kinds. They have categories for video and film, music, writing, comics and illustrations, podcasts, games, drawing and painting, animation, science, photography, education, crafts and DIY, dance and theatre, writing, education, comedy, and they even have an everything else category. Patreon is used by pretty much any kind of artist and that includes cover musicians. It’s a great way to directly support and connect with your favourite artists.
To illustrate, here is an impressive cover artist that is promoting their Patreon page for Patreon. You may have even seen some of his work on Switching Styles!