Kickstarter and Patreon are two platforms for independent artists to find support from their consumers. Both are based on similar principles, where a crowd of people each contribute a small sum to fund a larger goal. However, I propose that Patreon and Kickstarter are both fundamentally different from each other when it comes to WHY people choose to part with their cash.
As creators, we need to put ourselves in the shoes of a consumer. We should examine, share, and compare why we lend our financial support to one campaign, but not another. Comparing notes will help everyone using crowd funding deliver a better experience to the supporters they’re trying to woo.
To get the ball rolling, I’ll share with you my observations of my own buying habits. How do your experiences compare? Share with us in the comments below!
My behavior as a backer vs a patron
– Impulse buying
– Want a physical product (I never go for strictly digital goods)
– Want to help the creator for a specific goal
– Rush of being part of an event, part of a group
– I’m feeling financially stable enough to afford larger purchase
– Support for personal reasons, and often have been a fan of the person for a very long time
– Often feels like I contribute as a thank you for past work that mattered to me
– Sometimes feels like an investment in future projects
– I’m feeling financially tight, so chipping in $1 or $2 a month doesn’t feel so overwhelming as committing to a one-time $25 – $40 expense.
If I had to boil it down, when I’m a Kickstarter backer, I’m supporting a project. When I’m a Patreon patron, I’m supporting a person.
With Kickstarter, the product matters a lot to me, whereas I’m not nearly as interested in a specific product with Patreon. Kickstarter rewards are material. Something I can hold in my hands and say to myself, “I was part of making this happen.” With Patreon, the rewards are immaterial and transient. It’s a quiet “Thank you” or “Good job” or “Keep going!” to the creator. Which oddly enough makes it feel both more personal and more distant.
What about you?
– Why have you supported Kickstarter or Patreon campaigns?
– What do you think your readers want out of your own campaigns?
Robin Childs is addicted to storytelling, with specialties in world-building, character crafting, and language making. You can find the results of her storytelling pursuits at LeyLinesComic.com! Or drop a line on Twitter at RobinofLeyLines. If you are struggling with your own storytelling troubles, she offers a variety of developmental editing services!