Kickstarter & Community
Or: How to understand Community Supported Anything
My favourite podcast collective had a crazy idea. This group of radio personalities, storytellers, producers & editors thought - Heck! Maybe we could ask our listeners to pay us to create quality content.
What!? PAY for podcasts? No one will ever do that. That's unheard of. That's stealing our right to free content that we've become bizarrely accustomed to.
Well, I'll tell you - because I make a living off of community supported care (like our other Change Docs do too) - I understand why I would invest in and also receive from the people in my corner.
If you believe that your work is an art that is brought to light with money - instead of you being a product for sale - your work will be thoughtful, built on relationships with people who believe in what you offer & here's the lynchpin, irreplaceable.
No one can do YOU, better than you.
That's why we listen to one podcast more than others. It's not the content. It's the person behind the content. Because content, as we all know, is ubiquitous and scannable. People, memorable & nebulous.
HOW they broadcast their chosen content is equally if not more important than WHAT they broadcast.
Content is not king.
Content is meaningless without context. Humans flock to storytellers.
YOU are the storyteller of your art.
4 key steps to build a more sustainable radio podcast (or healthcare model)
Skill. Desire. Drive. Character.
1. BE STELLAR at what you do.
How? Refine your skill. Stay Relevant. Do your Research. Be Riveting. Into eternity.
2. KEEP showing up.
You know that question "What would you do if money were no object?" That's the backbone behind this. Something that hooks you in a way so that you would keep doing it, even if no one paid you AND/OR if you made bazillions doing it - that means you desire to create quality service/product regardless of compensation.
Of course your ability to create quality (or sustain a business) is often highly dependant on finance! SO this is why you have to keep showing up. Without desire, you won't show up.
SHOWING UP is showing the world you have skill, drive, desire & character.
- People will not pay you, if you do not have these four qualities.
- If they want more of your way of expressing these qualities in the world, they will pay for it.
- This kind of support is not a negotiation, it is a building trade with trust.
People trust passion before pitch. Showing up is passion, but you can't run a business without pitch so... step 3.
3. ASK for Support.
If you build a business on who you are - not what product you sell - your community will help you.
Now, get down off the worthiness horse & make stuff happen. The world will not bend over to make sure you stay afloat. If you are good at what you do and you have drive to keep doing intelligent work, people will respond to requests to support you. So request!
And by request I mean, don't ask people to pay for your product. Ask people to support you in making your work accessible. And then work extra hard to give your work to and support the people that support you.
Which leads us to...
4. SUPPORT your community.
If you want people to pitch in for you, you need to see the value in the act of investment. Building community is not one-way. Help build the strong community that you want by allowing good ideas to get off the ground and help them stay off the ground.
That's what grassroots means. That's how we stop feeling burden with the economy we are in. That's how business starts without large donors, or massive capital.
We are the people. This is our economy. This is our democracy. Take your power back.
That's why projects that come from sites like Kickstarter work. It's not about the product. It's people & product merged to build micro-communities. It's giving people a chance to vote for the kind of economic world they want. Let the small folk use their drive, skill & desire & character to forge a new way.
The world is changing. Get on board.