A header image for a blog post about Patreon
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A header image for a blog post about Patreon

When talking about how to monetise your blog, we tend to focus on things that most bloggers can consider – adding ads to your site, hosting sponsored content, using affiliate links, etc. However, there are other ways that you can earn money and we want to share as many options with you as possible so you can consider what the best options are for your specific situation.

Patreon is a platform where artists of any kind can create work and patrons give money every time there is a new upload or a fixed amount per month. It was created in 2013 by Jack Conte, a musician who was looking for a way to make some money off his YouTube channel.

Patreon allows the artist to provide new content when they want and allows them to separate out the more loyal subscribers with varying tiers of support. The more you pay, the more content you’ll receive. It’s free to set up and fees are about 10% of whatever you receive – an average of 5% for transaction fees then 5% goes to Patreon.

However, there are some downsides – your audience must be a loyal enough one to want to pay to subscribe to your content, and it will obviously create extra work for you that must be prioritized (because otherwise why would people keep subscribing!).  

It’s a great service because it allows your most loyal fans to support you and also receive exclusive content (which if they’re fans, then they’ll love that!) It provides a reasonably reliable income stream for you and it’s a low risk and low cost way for you to earn some money.

There are lots of different things that you could offer your community, here are a few ideas…

  • Access to all written content
  • Exclusive blog posts
  • Weekly updates
  • Private Instagram/Facebook group access
  • Downloadable guides
  • Book club
  • Sneak peek photos and videos
  • Bonus podcast episodes
  • Physical gifts/letters/etc

We spoke to Bee, who runs the blog Vivatramp and has an active community on Patreon a few questions to give us more of an idea of why it can be really useful for bloggers. Bee has been using Patreon since April 2018 and was looking to build a community instead of just running a Go Fund Me for a specific project so Patreon fitted in well to her plans.

What has been an unexpected benefit to you using Patreon?

One of the unexpected benefits is probably just how much it has reinvigorated my passions. It’s also a good confidence booster cause I genuinely didn’t think anyone would give a shit.

Would you recommend other bloggers setting up their own Patreon?

I’d recommend it to creative bloggers (writers, artists, etc) over other genres. Creativity is a big part of Patreon. It’s main mission, after all, is to help creators earn a living from the things they…create.

Patreon is a lot of hard work, if you do it right, and there’s no guarantees that your readership will follow you so I would only hand on heart recommend it to people willing to make something of it.

Is it easy to get money out as a UK person?

You have to fill in a W-8BEN form before you start which essentially just deals with the fact you’re in the UK etc. Once you’ve done that it’s simple.

Anything else?

I genuinely love my Patreon and the community I’m building. Genuinely. It has helped me so much on a personal level and I’m putting so much love and effort into it.

Hoping to try and grow it a little more before the year is out cause I’m putting a lot of good stuff into it.

If you’d like to join Bee’s community, head over to her Patreon page.

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