Optimising goals' steps

On the left of the page we are invited to define the goals we want to reach. Both in terms of amount by month, and then what are we willing to do if that amount is reached. I think I found a good sequence I want to share it.

Considering we want the steps to be pretty much even; considering we want that when we reach a goal we are already around half way near the next one (looks better); considering that we want to touch the basic rounded values of 10, 100, 1000. Then the sequence:

10$ Goal 1 (mum)
22$ Goal 2 (and dad)
46$ Goal 3 (some friends)
100$ Goal 4 (some interest)
216$ Goal 5 (hobby)
464$ Goal 6 (passion)
1000$ Goal 7 (first holiday job)
2154$ Goal 8 (part time work)
4642$ Goal 9 (financial independence)
10000$ Goal 10 (you can now employ someone to work with you)

Each goal is at the same ratio from the previous and the following (each time multiply by 2.154);
once you reach a goal, you are already half way to the next one;
it takes only 3 steps to go from one order of magnitude to the next one.

You can try to round it up:
10, 20, 50, 100
10, 25, 50, 100
but in the first case to go from 20 to 50 you have a bigger step (2.5), and in the second case you have the same bigger step between 10 and 25.

And you, what steps did you chose? Why?

I think you’re taking far too mathematical an approach to this. This isn’t really how people think in real life. I understand the point about already being halfway to the next goal when you achieve one, but I think that’s less important than having a small set of clearly-defined goals that make sense.

Most of your “goals” aren’t goals at all: “mum”, “and dad”, “some friends” describe how many people you need to get that level of support, not what you need the money for.

The point about goals is to keep you and your (potential) patrons motivated. You need to be motivated to work towards achieving your goals; your patrons need to be motivated to hand over their cash. You do that by promising them benefits: specific things you will (or will be able to) do once you have that level of support.

My goals are these:

  1. $100: Spend more time on research, editing and post production to make my videos better. (That’s what I tell my patrons. In reality, it means for me the chance to turn down a client or two without feeling guilty about it, because now my videos are actual work.)
  2. $500: Go on location more often to make more interesting and engaging videos.
  3. $1000: Turn off pre-roll ads and invest in some better equipment for more professional-looking content.
  4. $5000: Go full time.

My thinking here is that these goals make sense. They’re clearly defined and – I think – reasonable milestones on the road to, hopefully, greatness. It’s a small number of goals, which is easier for people to digest in one quick flip-through. And each goal contains definite promises: right now, I’m not halfway between “hobby” and “passion”, but halfway to “making videos about lots of exciting, new places”.

And what I think is important is that the goals are worded with the patrons in mind: it’s their money, so they want to know what exactly they’re getting in return.

Of course, if I do achieve the $1000 goal, I’m only 1/5 of the way to the next one, which shows up as a quite a short line. But I don’t think that’s going to discourage anyone – as if anyone’s going to say, “Oh dear, he’s only got a short line; he doesn’t deserve my cash.”

I would suggest that rather than worrying about how having less than 50% of something might look, you think more in terms of telling your patrons what you’re actually doing with their hard-earned cash.

1 Like

I started with a budget of what I needed, organized items into groups, and then went from there. I realized patrons don’t need to know exactly where every dollar goes and so they are only really in on the first phase in which Patreon pays for my art. This was important because they needed to see how their pledge actually allows me to do art.

My first goal was $25 as I wanted to have something small enough so as to be attainable. I have since figured out the average amount pledged per patron and changed to community goals allowing some flexibility in case the average pledge changes.

My goals:
5 patrons for art supplies
10 patrons for artist meetings
15 patrons for research

At this point I tried to make goals that would not only benefit me, but give something back to patrons:
25 patrons so I can save over the course of a year to do an artist alley (covers con cost and merchandise) Once a year ongoing patrons get to choose items from the con products to be mailed to them.
30 patrons for livestreaming. Some streams will be patron exclusive and I will occasionally take requests.
40 patrons is when I will begin making commission pledges to other Patreon creators.

After this my art costs should be covered and my budget goes to more personal things like utilities, groceries, and rent (BORING); but I have made my Patreon goals one time bonuses that they will receive at each 100 patron level because who cares if I need a new bra by then? :laughing:

I figure low goals in the beginning so patrons can see the progress, and then larger goals as you continue because hopefully your Patreon will be gaining momentum by then.

I think this is a really interesting way of doing it, i can certainly see the psychology behind it.

Thanks for the comment, @rewboss. Of course the description (mum, and dad, some friends, …) are not the name of the goals and do not appear on my page at all. It is just a semi-serious way for me to present them here. I understand that you want your goals to make sense, and to have less of them. So maybe you could use a bigger multiplier: 3.162
If you now go: 10, 31, 100, 316, 1000, 3162, 10000 you will not in any way have a difference in speed. As I write this I realize that the reason why I don’t want a difference in speed is not so much because of how it looks, but because it represents a difference in time. If every time you achieve a new goal, you are going to make a big patron-party, you want those parties to be evenly spaced. Now, if your work expand exponentially (like I hope for you :slight_smile: ) this will be evenly time spaced. And you could even round them a bit: 10, 30, 100, 300, 1000…

In any case I am not an artist, I am a mathematician. And I am presenting some mathematical research. Maybe we have different patrons :slight_smile:

If you want to throw a “patron party”, you can do that any time you like. But if you’re expecting those parties to be evenly spaced if you arrange your goals to increase strictly exponentially, you might be disappointed.

This isn’t like population growth, where there’s theoretically no upper limit and the population sort of grows itself. Your patronage has a very definite upper limit: the number of people who are prepared to support you financially. This means that how your patronage grows is going to depend on the initial size of your fanbase and how successful you are at (a) persuading your fans to part with their cash and (b) growing your fanbase. Growth is likely to be very uneven.

For example, and this isn’t necessarily typical, I managed to get about 100 patrons pledging between them about $350/month within a week of launching my campaign. Most of those signed up within a couple of days, and represent the total number of people who saw my video announcing the launch and decided to support me.

The rate of new patrons has now slowed to a trickle, because that upper limit has now been reached. I now need to work to attract more: it’s not going to happen by itself. That means trying various different ideas and approaches, some of which may work and some of which won’t. One thing this growth won’t be is exponential. The growth of my YouTube channel hasn’t been exponential either.

1 Like

oh well, maybe you are right then.

Take care,

If anyone is still reading this thread - I took a very different approach with my goals: I chose to make all of my rewards basically the same (the reward/level of access a Patron gets for $1 is the same as what they get for $25, right on up to $100 and then I started adding some stuff) and I use the goals as more of a “group rewards” section.

Here’s what I have as my goals:

25 Patrons - Handwritten thank you notes
50 Patrons - All patrons will receive adownload of acoustic EP“Vittles & Valentines”
100 Patrons - My first 100 Patrons will receive a digital delivery of Liner Notes, Illustrations and Photo Archives that aren’t available anywhere else.
200 Patrons - All Patrons will receive a 10% off code for all Becca Merch!
300 Patrons - Covers Club! I’ll take a survey and record a Patron-Exclusive cover video of your top choice!

… it goes on, although I’m planning to revamp them soon, now that I’m in the swing of it. Currently I’m 25 away from hitting 200 patrons.

I’ve found this to be useful and fun. I’m sure there are lots of different approaches that work, thought I’d throw my $.02 in!


That’s innovative and a really good idea! I’m not sure how I could make it work for myself, but I really like the approach.