Anyone with experience totally retooling their reward tiers?

So we have a podcast and came out of the gate with WAY too many reward tiers. Also compounded issues by offering physical goods @ one of the reward levels. This has made upkeep rather tedious.

My cohosts and I have been discussing completely retooling our reward tiers. We’re thinking about having two levels: a $5 level that gets ALL perks and a pay-what-you-want level for those patrons who wish to contribute more.

Our thinking is we can secure way more patronage by simplifying the pitch. Want more of our show? Bonus content? Early episode release? All past episodes? It’s all yours for just $5 a month. No more trying to explain all the various tiers, falling behind on perk fullfillment, etc.

I think what we will initially lose in monthly revenue, we can make up/eclipse by enticing way more patrons. (We have 7k+ listeners but only 429 patrons)

Has anyone else gone through something similar? Was it worth it? Would you have done anything differently?


The most important thing to remember is that the vast majority of your Patrons give money so that you can keep doing what you’re doing. It’s not about the rewards, it’s about you continuing to put your work out into the world.

I like a simple $5 tier. I recently removed my $1 tier, so $3 is the minimum, and it’s been totally fine. The higher tiers will let people know that if they did want to give you money, it would be appreciated, and you can help them see what you’d do with that additional revenue.


I’m sure this answer is readily available – but since I have you here, when you remove a tier, are those folks removed? Are they grandfathered in? Curious what kind of messaging a $1 tier user got when that tier was removed.

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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.


Thank you for the thoughtful, thorough reply @ammulder!

Your feedback makes me feel even more bullish about retooling our tiers.

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I “unpublished” the $1 tier. It still exists, but is not visible to new patrons. When I look at my page, I see all the “published” and “unpublished” tiers listed (and labeled as such). If I look from a browser where I’m not logged in, I see only the “published” tiers listed.

In my dashboard, I still see patrons listed in that $1 tier.

I have no idea if they got any messaging from Patreon when the tier was unpublished. I didn’t send anything, though I keep meaning to send them an offer touting the benefits of the higher tiers. :slight_smile:

I expect the story is different if you actually remove/delete the tier instead of only “unpublishing” it. I haven’t had the guts to do that yet.


hi! I wanted to confirm that if you delete a tier, all the patrons drop into “no rewards” but their pledges are not removed. The best advice if they want to have their patrons pledge into a new reward is to ask them to move (since there’s no way to remove them directly). This help article has a bit more info about how and why it works this way.

Thanks for making this thread! let me know if you have any more questions I can get answered.


Hey @neil, I saw you might have some questions or concerns about changing up your tiers. You can use this thread if you want to ask any questions, I’d love to help as we know reorganizing your tiers is one of the best ways to increase fan to patron conversion :slight_smile:

Thank you. Yes, I want to rework my tiers, but one of my obstacles is general confusion from supporters caused by the “or more per month” wording tied to text Patreon provides on the reward tiers. I’ve had some people misread that as meaning if they give $10, they also get everything at the tiers below that because “or more per month.” Our tiers aren’t cumulative. The other problem is that we have people who want combinations of some of those tiers and the lack of an add-on system forces us to code some of those combinations as distinct reward tiers. (Telling them to just pledge over the amount breaks the benefits tracking.)

So… before I touch anything, does Patreon have any plans to tackle add-on rewards? (I’m pledging $6 to get both the $4 and $2 reward.)


We completely redid our tiers probably a year and a half ago. One thing that I would caution (which may have been changed, I’m not sure!) is that when we redid the tiers, it simply renamed the existing tiers. So patrons who were in the $4 tier, when I renamed it $5, were given the $5 rewards. It did not rejig all the patrons and what level they were at. I don’t know if I would have made all new ones and deleted the old ones, if it would have rejigged the patrons. I suspect not, given the comment above from Mindy.

Mind you, it is probably worth checking with Patreon as this behavior may be different now.

  • Kenna

Hi Neil! Thank you for your comment. The “or more per month” language implies that a patron can choose to pledge more for that tier. So, they can opt to pay $8 for the $6 tier, and only get benefits made available to the $6 tier.

That being said, we see how the language, and UI can be confusing, so we really appreciate you sharing that feedback for us to consider. For the time being, we would recommend setting very clear expectations on your tier descriptions. Hope this is helpful. Ursula - Patreon Product Manager


Thanks for the note, Kenna! It is not immediately apparent, but Patreon does allow multiple tiers at the same tier price. Your Patrons would then receive the rewards for whichever tier they opted into. So, if you renamed a tier from $4 to $5, but changed nothing else, patrons on that tier should not have $5 rewards. If you did want the rewards and pricing to change, as Mindy noted, you would have to communicate to your patrons that the change is coming, and that some action may be needed on their part to move to the correct tier.

On a separate note, I am loving this thread, and I love the fact that you are all experimenting with your tiers to find the sweet spot that works for you and your patrons. I’m all about learning and iterating. Way to go!
Ursula - Patreon Product Manager


Hi! I remodeled my rewards last month, giving less to the lower categories of 2 and 7, emphasizing the 10 category and with a strong reward in the 20 category.
I lost 20% of my subscribers almost immediately but, to my surprise, the remaining subscribers increased their promise and, some three weeks later, I recovered practically in number of subscribers, with a much higher profits.
My remodeling was based on the fact that, when I started my career in Patreon, I used a lot of time and resources in the rewards of my subscribers and I was neglecting my main goal, which is to make videos (I am Youtuber), so I was exhausted and burned. For me it was necessary.
At the moment I am very happy to have trusted in myself and to have made these changes, and my subscribers seem very happy. They are faithful in their great majority and repeat their promise month after month.


Same here.

We got rid of the lowest tier. The next up from it was 5x as much but most just transferred over. We only lost a couple.

Reworking is probably a good thing all around if you are up front about it and communicate what you are about to do and stay honest all the way.

Well done, by the way!