Hey folks, how are ya? I’m writing because I’ve decided to make a change or two to the site, and I wanted to be as up front and transparent about it as possible. Because I love you guys. A Lot. :) Now, as much as I love working on this site, I’m not able to work on it as much as I’d like because so much of my focus has to go towards work that pays the bills. Now I know I’ve put up a donation button, and I’m thrilled for and amazingly thankful to all those who have donated, but I want to take things a step further and have this site at least pay for its own hosting costs, and hopefully, eventually, a bit more. This is why I have a plan that I wanted to shoot your way.
First Up, Ads
Now, I’ve said I’ve been against ads before, but every time I do, several of you guys are like, “Dude, put up ads, if it gives you more money to make more content, we’re behind it.” So soonish (once I figure out how), I’m going to incorporate simple and (hopefully) unobtrusive ads into both the blog and the forum in the hopes that the ad revenue from these ads will encourage me to create more content to bring in more traffic to get more ads clicked on to bring in more revenue. An upward spiral, if you will. I never want this site to become littered with ads, but I want to make the ads I choose to show useful at the very least, such as an Amazon search box and the like. Therefore, please forgive the mess as I toy with themes and such that support ads (this one doesn’t seem to) until I find one I feel is clean, readable and usable.
If you have any suggestions, questions, criticisms or concerns about this, please feel free to share them below or happily contact me directly.
Then, An Idea I’m Toying With, Patreon (Which, if Implemented, Would be Optional)
Recently I found out about this service called Patreon, which I’m quite intrigued by. Basically, it allows users to tip a certain amount for specific types of content, which in this site’s case would be reviews, let’s plays, previews, interviews and so on. Users can donate a specific amount for each post, and each tier comes with a specific set of rewards. You can see an example of how this is set up here with Mattie Brice’s profile. I’d still have to come up with the rewards, but you can see on Ms. Brice’s profile an example of how this could work. You can see a video on how this works on the site’s about us page, but here’s how I believe it works.
Say there are four donation levels, $1, $5, $10 and $20. Each level has an increasing set of rewards associated with it, such as exclusive content, a personal video chat and so on. These levels are set up so that each time an original piece of content — such as an original review, let’s play video, interview or preview, but not news or a post like this, for example — is posted, each person is charged for the amount they set. Let’s say two people chose the $1 level, one person chose the $5 level and one person chose the $10 level. In this scenario, total donation per piece of original content would be $17 from four different donors. Also, donors can set up a budget so they don’t go over a certain amount. For example, a donor could choose the $5 level and set a $15 monthly budget. If I put up four articles, this person would only be charged three times. It’s basically like an ongoing tip jar for content creation.
Now I’ve asked some people very close to me what they think of this, and they also think it’s an interesting idea. Part of me thinks it might seem like begging. However, I’ve been told it’s only begging if the person giving money can expect nothing in return, and you guys would definitely get something in return. This could include exclusive content, a personal Skype chat or something to that effect (I’d have to come up with it, of course). With all that said, I want to know what you guys think. Again, this would be purely optional, as I’d be writing content anyway, but if I could get enough support per article, who knows, maybe I could become more self-sufficient and have more time to devote to this site and to you guys. I would love to hear what you guys think of this idea in the comments, so please be open and honest.
I Hope This Doesn’t Make Me a Sell Out ;)
Again, I’ve been avoiding going down this route because somewhere in my brain, something tells me I’m selling out, that I don’t deserve it, that I’d be seen as a sham doing it for the money and only the money. I hope y’all know that isn’t true. I love working on this site as much as I can, but I’ll be honest, being able to earn some coin from it would help. I plan to keep working on this site for as long as I draw air, but until my work or living situation changes, the amount of time and energy I’ll have to devote to this site will be limited. This is why I hope that, eventually, this site can help sustain me at least part time, maybe even full time, so that I can put as much time and effort as possible into it to keep you guys entertained. :)
Thanks for hearing me out folks, and again, if you have any questions, comments, criticisms or just want to yell at me for selling out to the Almighty Dollar, feel free to do so below or contact me directly. Thanks as always for visiting, and have a great night.