Crowdfunding platform Patreon rolled out its 2018 wrap-up blog post today, revealing a slate of stats, reviewing what changed in 2018, and giving creators a glimpse of what’s to come.
In May 2018, Patreon announced it had 100,000 creators and 2 million monthly patrons supporting them. Now, it’s revealed that between May and December, its creators drew in an additional one million patrons, bringing its current total up to 3 million. All those patrons have added up to significant takings for Patreon creators: the platform expects to pay out its billionth dollar to creators this year.
“This incredible achievement not only shows the importance of our mission to fund the creative class, but that it’s affecting real people — both creators and patrons,” the company said. It added that creators’ patrons allow them to “build sustainable businesses that reinforce the art and the value they bring to this world.”
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Overall, Patreon’s payouts to creators have doubled in recent years, from $150 million in 2017 to more than $300 million in 2018 — and Patreon anticipates to continue that trend by paying out more than $500 million in 2019.
The company noted that, over the course of 2018, it launched several creator-supporting initiatives, including Patreon U, a set of online and in-person bootcamps meant to teach creators how to build a booming independent business with Patreon’s tools, and monthly workshops from Patreon’s Creator Team that are designed to foster stronger relationships between creators. Another new feature debuted in 2018 is Special Offers, which allows creators to attract more patrons by giving out unique rewards for supporters who subscribe to a specific tier within a specific timeframe.
Looking to 2019, Patreon intends to launch a merch solution that will handle the (often monthly) busywork of producing and shipping creators’ physical patron rewards. This service was originally announced back in June 2018, when Patreon acquired influencer-savvy ecommerce startup Kit for an undisclosed sum.
Patreon says it will continue adding more creator features this year, but didn’t offer specifics. You can check out the company’s full wrap-up here.