So I just wanted to give a quick update on my experiences with ConvertKit.
I’m still in the setting-up phase. I haven’t pulled the trigger yet on using this to onboard my patrons. And, with the issues ConvertKit is having, it’s just as well.
When it’s not about the Patreon integration, I’m finding their support to be much more solid. If I need to customize a subscribe form, or set up a subscriber segment, I often get a reply within minutes. And once I’m chatting with a support person, it’s a realtime chat, and the solution is often arrived upon quickly, and they’ll cheerfully stick with me no matter how many questions I have. I’m having a good experience there.
Some of their knowledge base pages are out-of-date and need to be updated. They reference work-arounds that are no longer necessary because of new features, and give instructions for features that have been changed completely. Eventually you figure it out, but it’s usually easier to just ask their support chat.
The Patreon integration. It was listed as “Beta” on their Integrations page (and now I can’t find it listed at all.) And it’s definitely not ready for prime time.
They have for the most part seemed to have fixed the issue where they were tagging Active patrons as Cancelled, but I’ve noticed that at least two new Active patrons have been tagged wrong since the fix.
And a bigger deal: none of my new patrons have been added through the integration since March 5th, so it now seems to be broken completely.
And when I’ve reached out to their support about both these issues, I’m told that they only have one developer who works on all the integrations and so he’s been “slammed.” Since I haven’t launched or announced this feature to my patrons, this is merely concerning. But if it was a live benefit I was offering my patrons, and it had been down since March 5th with no end in sight, I would be livid.
In addition, there are some things with how the integration is set up that could be better thought out. For example, patrons who cancel their pledge and patrons whose credit cards are declined are both tagged as “Patreon: Cancelled.” Obviously, the emails I would send out to these two groups would be radically different. It makes no sense to lump them together. Whether there is hope of getting this improved when the basic features aren’t working, and their one guy is “slammed,” is hard to say.
Where I Am With This Right Now
I am still enamored with the potential that ConvertKit offers to create a really useful onboarding sequence for my new patrons. The overall interface for creating those automations is excellent. They have a good reputation overall as an email service provider. (They are basically the new hotness.) And the price is much more competitive than Drip.
I’m going to give it a bit more time to see if they are able to get it together with the Patreon integration. The potential is so good, I’m hesitant to just walk away.
But if it’s not ready in a couple weeks, I’ll have to look into other alternatives. Perhaps the Patreon/Zapier integration would be more reliable, and would allow me to use the ConvertKit features I like (even though using Zapier would add additional expense, which offering a “native integration” is supposed to avoid.)
If the developers at Patreon could throw that slammed ConvertKit developer a bone, that would be much appreciated.
I’ll keep y’all posted.