Why would fans pay to support your creative work?

You are an author, podcaster, photographer, journalist or a social media celebrity. You have 2K+ followers on Instagram or on Facebook and your tweets regularly get 100+ retweets. People love you. They spend hours enjoying your work. But, you don’t make any money from it. The platforms - Instagram, Facebook, or Twitter don’t share revenues. You spend a lot of time on your creations that no one pays for, and you end up chasing clueless sponsors/advertisers. There is an obvious resolution of this paradox - your most passionate fans should pay you directly, and support your work.

There is now enough evidence that fans are in fact willing to pay for creative effort that they are passionate about. Enabling them to support you directly should therefore be a part of your plan. 

Fans are willing to pay because you put in great thought and effort to create what they all love. The big reason they don’t do so today is because 1) your audience is on platforms that do not make it easy to pa you directly, 2) you haven't asked them to pay so they don’t know they should, and 3) converting your social media followers to paying supporters requires additional effort e.g. creating exclusive content. 

All this requires patience and persistence. Not many creators enjoy it, which means you can be one of the early ones to take advantage of this shift. So let’s talk about how to encourage your fans to pay you:

  1. Choosing the right platform: You need to be on platforms that make it easy for fans to pay and support you. Large social media platforms are built on advertising revenue so helping fans pay creators isn’t their priority.  Fair enough - you get to host your content for free, and they help you build a fan base. Luckily for you, there are platforms today that specialize in getting you paid for your content - ScrollStack.com is one of them, and there are of course the likes of Ko-fi, Buymeacoffee, Patreon, etc. For a creator in India, most of the global platforms won’t work because they like to accept payments in $. That’s one of the top reasons we created ScrollStack.com. You can create your free account in under a minute, and start accepting payments right away from your fans around the world. Here {link} is a simple video on how to do that.

  1. Asking fans to pay (getting out of your comfort zone):  Your fans don’t know they can pay you because you haven’t shown them how to! Regardless of the size of your fan following, there are people who want to support you by paying. So the first step in getting paid is to ask to be paid. It might feel odd in the beginning and perhaps it helps to know that while we are the beginning of this shift to a “paid internet” there are enough examples of creators who have been successful and even the ones with Hollywood TV shows no longer ignore a direct appeal to fans. To make some of this easy we created a list of eight great “pitches'' from a wide range of creators to get your creative ideas going.

Once you create your pitch, you should remind your fans/followers regularly because not everyone is seeing all your content every time you post. The best place to do this is on various social media platforms where you have your followers - tweet about it every week, create an IG story, put a link in your YouTube video and bio, make a video explaining your process.

  1. Exclusives for Supporters: Most creators don’t want to put their work behind a paywall and risk losing their audience. A great middle ground is to create exclusive content for your paying patrons or supporters to let them know that they are special among the fans. For example, you can make a short story available only to your Supporters if you are a fiction writer. You can create a special sketch for your supporters if you are an artist. You can dedicate your content to your most loyal supporters to encourage others to step up e.g. “This post is possible because Varna supported my content with INR 2000. Thank you Varna!”

Try this and see how it goes. You won’t get it right the first time, but it will make you more comfortable in trying different strategies (paid posts, direct fan support etc). If you want to dig deeper, we love the guide that folks at Ko-fi have put together.

If you need any help or have questions, you can always write to us at creators@scrollstack.com and we are happy to help.

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