Patreon should chase up Declined Pledges

I’ve been looking at my Patron Manager a little closer than usual this month after noticing a decline in pledge amounts lately, and finally decided to crunch some numbers:

Out of a total of 2,313 patrons, 726 are marked as “declined” - That’s over 30% of my Patrons.

Worse than that, it currently adds up to over $3,400 in lost monthly revenue!

I believe that Patreon in the past have suggested that we should reach out to ‘declined’ patrons and gently encourage them to update their payment methods, but surely there must be a way for Patreon to automate this process and send out their own notifications?

As a full-time creator, I just don’t have time to chase up over 700 people each month to let them know that their card/Paypal/whatever has not gone through.

Some of these people have been marked as ‘declined’ for months or years. Yet the (admittedly very few) people I’ve contacted about this claim to have had no warnings or notice from Patreon that this was the case.

It would be amazing for me if Patreon could do a little more on the credit control side of things to help fix or improve this issue - and presumably it would also be worth their time financially as well, if there are thousands upon thousands of unpaid dollars out there!

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Hi there!

We do chase up on declines and you can see more details here: https://support.patreon.com/hc/en-us/articles/204606115-I-have-declined-patrons-Will-you-charge-them-again-

While we find that patrons respond well to hearing directly from their creators – we’ll still do our part!

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Yeah, this has been a really challenging area for many of us. Patreon consistently says that they reach out to the declined patrons, but we also find that when we try to we hear from people that they had no idea they were declined, and I’ve heard this from other creators, too. We also have a lot of trouble reaching people as email addresses are sometimes bad or bogus. It’s not clear to me that Patreon checks the email address people use to sign up to make sure that it is a working address. Without a good email address we have no way to get a hold of people. Also, without a way to delete long-declined patrons, it becomes an administrative nightmare to keep track of who we have reached out to already, and who we haven’t when we just have a long list of declined patrons that we can see each month. There doesn’t seem to be a good way around this, that we can find, other than to block declined patrons, which has its own drawbacks.

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You can mass message declined patrons on the relationship manager.

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True but I find they are even less likely to respond to that than if we email them through our own email account. :slightly_frowning_face:

So we do often do this as a first step, but then we eventually end up having to try to email them all separately anyway. Has it worked for you to reach out to patrons this way?

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People who are active in patreon will notice it, very few will respond. Those who aren’t active is most likely doesn’t have an interest on keep supporting or using patreon anyways.

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I wish we (or patrons) could have the option of being notified (and maybe choose how/when they are notified) after the first decline. As it stands, they are apparently not notified but simply treated as “non-patrons” after the first decline. This is probably good for the majority of declined patrons, but it doesn’t work well for some of mine, who use a debit card for online purchases and occasionally forget to top up, but still very much want to be my patrons. It is frustrating for me to see them on the decline list by chance, and then have to reach out to them. I can’t imagine how frustrating this would be if I had a lot of declines. We should have some kind of control over the notifications that repeat declines get. @Angela, can you see if this is feasible? Thank you!

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I had a bad experiencing with mass messaging - someone responded to me (and I think it went only to me) but then I responded to them and it went to the whole group. Very awkward.