I did rejigger my tiers, reducing the number and trying to better align with what patrons are looking for. I settled on emphasizing a $5 tier that offers “free” stuff on a monthly basis (digital, so easier fulfillment) and a $20 tier that offers “insider” access – pre-release stuff, a Slack channel, free copies of everything I do, etc. I have other tiers that are specific to the campaign, but if I was to generalize, those are the two I’d emphasize and the two that the most patrons select.
At the time of the switch I removed a $1 tier that was kind of a tip jar because at the end of the day it offered no value to the patrons, and I figure I can tempt at least a third or a fifth of potential $1 patrons to a higher tier that actually gets them something. I removed a $30 tier that nobody selected but kept a high-end $50 tier that has a couple patrons. I did make sure that nobody “lost value”, so I had one patron on a $10 tier that I removed, who I granted the benefits of the revised $15 tier. She eventually switched off it anyway.
It was a big success. I have gained more patrons and had much less turnover since I did all that.
I had someone join at the $5 tier and note on Facebook that they don’t see paying $15-20 per month for what they’d get at that level. But I’ve had a number of others join at the $20 level since the switch. Beforehand, a lot of people over the smallest levels would drop after a couple months, but as I said, that’s been a lot rarer in the last few months.
Finally, I will disagree with the last point to an extent – though many people want me to keep doing what I’m doing, a LOT of them are in it for the rewards. So it was important to me to offer good value in the rewards at the $5 level, so people feel like they’re getting a “good deal” even if they’re not of a mind to just support me for the sake of supporting me. The true believers are generally at the $20 level.
I suspect some of that differs by campaign/genre/topic though.