How to build a community of 1000 True Fans

3 Minutes Read

Talent can attract their 1,000 true fans and beyond through Gathr, connecting with niche interests to facilitate sustainable careers by retaining the full value of their work.

Part I - Fan Math

In 2008, futurist Kevin Kelly wrote a now-famous article about how to make a living as a creator in a world where peer-to-peer connection is now the norm. The article, 1000 True Fans, proposes that success for creators--or, in Gathr's case, Talent--doesn’t need to be defined by having millions of customers or fans. Instead, you can make a living with your craft by cultivating a dedicated base of approximately 1,000 true fans.



What is a true fan?

Kelly defines true fans as those who will buy anything you produce and continue to actively support your work year after year. They are willing to pay for your products, attend your events, and engage with your content. By maintaining a direct relationship with these fans and earning an average of $100 profit per true fan per year, you can generate $100,000 in annual income.

True fans are core supporters who not only contribute to your income but also act as a marketing force to attract more fans. While the number 1,000 is not absolute and can vary depending on factors like pricing and income needs, it serves as a rough order of magnitude for the goal. 




How can I attract my 1000 true fans?

To build a lasting relationship with your true fans, Kelly asserts, you need to do two things. First, you must create and share enough content each year to generate the $100 per fan. Second, you need to have a direct relationship with your fans. Till now, this second requirement has been challenging for faculty, authors and subject matter specialists hoping to earn passive income, and monetize their time through events. 

Here's a scenario:

Professor W. is the Chair of her university's psychology department. She's tenured. She's lectured to thousands of students over a 2 decade career. She's also a published author and she is occasionally hired to speak at corporate or academic events. 

The problem is, she cannot maintain a relationship with her students because their .edu email addresses go away shortly after graduating. Additionally, neither the book publishers and certainly not Professor W. have direct access to consumer data for her book sales. Finally, Professor W. is never provided with the attendee lists from the events at which she's hired to speak.

Professor W. has not had the ability to create a community around herself. She's lacked the tools to directly engage with her True Fans. Were she to be able to build her own relationships with audience by removing the middlemen, she could easily create her own events, sell her own tickets, directly sell copies of her books and coursework, capture her events and commoditize them by converting them into video on demand rentals, etc -- earning both active and passive income from these activities.

That's where Gathr comes in. We make it easier than ever to share what you create--and build, maintain, and monetize relationships with true fans.

Where Kickstarter and IndieGoGo provide crowdfunding for your projects, and Patreon and SubStack offer subscription platforms for your content, Gathr gives you the engine for your in-real-life (IRL), virtual and hybrid events.

Gathr empowers you to easily create new and recurring events. Build direct connections with your audience and assemble an extensive email list. Monetize your knowledge and insight. Derive ongoing value from your digital content. Negotiate your share of ticket sales for bookings. You'll stop allowing event organizers to cannibalize your hard-earned intellectual property by throwing up your lecture onto YouTube for free when they book you through Gathr and use our event platform -- you get the Gathr Security Guarantee™. And much more.

Cultivating 1,000 true fans takes time, effort, and skill. And while not all Talent may be suited to direct community interaction, focusing on true fans can connect you to those who genuinely appreciate your work and can give you a sustainable career.




Niche interests empower Talent

While outlining the value of true fans, Kelly also describes the “long-tail effect,” referencing his colleague Chris Anderson’s observation that when you total the sales from, for instance, the obscure, less in-demand shows in Netflix’s catalog, they equal or sometimes exceed earnings from the much smaller pool of high-demand items. What this means for Talent is that even the most niche interests have value.

Talent who can directly connect with their true fans, unlike traditional intermediaries like labels and publishers (who often struggle to cater to niche audiences), have the opportunity to thrive in the long tail and retain the full value of their work.

Gathr enables sustainable careers for Talent

Nurturing your 1,000 true fans is even more feasible today, thanks to technologies like the Gathr platform. While this engine can, and does, power highly popular Talent who already have millions of fans, it is also a boon for those whose goal is a sustainable career and a direct connection with a dedicated fan base.

Explore how Gathr can help you build your true fan base by enabling you to easily:






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