Do you currently have goals? What motivated you to create them?
Yes, however I’ve achieved all the current goals for my campaign (this happened around the time I hit $3k per month in revenue, a number I never imagined when I started with Patreon in 2013). I created them because I’ve worked with a lot of kickstarters and other campaigns over the years and I know that having realistic and achievable targets REALLY helps motivate both the creator AND supporters.
I’m a per-creation campaign (as that was the only option back when I started) and produce an average of nine creations per month. My goals started very personal -
- $30 - Buy better art supplies to make better art.
- $60 - Purchase inebriants to… encourage my creativity.
- $120 - Pay my rent
- $300 - Release some of my work under a commercial use license
- $400 - Re-release pieces from the back catalog under the commercial license
- $500 - More commercial releases!
How hard was it to set up goals when you started your page? Was there anything that confused you or you wished was different?
The hardest part of setting goals is making sure that they don’t increase the amount of work I have to do. My goal is to keep creating without turning Patreon fulfillment into a major part of my work cycle. Finding the right mix of personal (inward-facing) goals and public (outward-facing) goals was a challenge, but having the personal goals in the mix was a huge boost in the end and keeps the campaign feeling personal.
I promoted my goals heavily - as milestones when we hit them, but also to aim people at the milestones as we moved forward. Achievable, relatable, realistic goals helped make the campaign work. It’s like running a live stream - if you include an actual (achievable) target number of donations or likes during a stream, you generally bring in more of what you are asking for than if you don’t.
How do you currently use goals? Do you involve your patrons into the process at all?
I don’t actually have any goals left right now. This is a problem because promoting those goals REALLY helped boost my campaign and was a primary driver to get me where I am now. But creating new goals that won’t also increase my work load is HARD.
My existing goal levels however include me contacting all my patrons every month and polling them for what back-catalog releases will be re-released. So they are actively involved in the campaign every month because of the goals we’ve already reached together.
How would you feel if goals was no longer a feature on Patreon? What, if anything, would you do differently?
I would be disappointed. I achieved what I have ($3k per month in revenue) with a lot of work, and goals were one of the tools I leveraged heavily. There are several occasions where fans of mine went out into several social media environments to drum up new supporters because we were getting close to a new goal level - and these produced noticeable spikes in my patronage. In fact, if I were launching a new campaign now I would recreate the goals anyways in the main campaign description (the way stretch goals are often handled within Kickstarter campaigns).
I’m in the process of helping my girlfriend set up her campaign, and a major part of the setup is determining goals with the target of keeping them attainable in order to be able to use them as a tool to improve the traction of her campaign as it progresses.