In June, after our PACII Roadshow event, Amanda and I took the opportunity to film some important videos for our channel. In theory, planning time to film after our tour was a great idea since we live in different states. Next time, we will film the day before touring instead of after because boy were we deliriously tired.
While discussing the direction we want Put A Cup In It to go Amanda and I decided videos were a big part of our plan. With my video editing and filming experience and her graphics we have a real opportunity to create amazing, helpful, high quality menstrual education videos. So far we have made a few including the infamous “Inside Look at Menstrual Cups” that has gone on to be seen over half a million times on our YouTube and another 1.3 million in the .Mic video on Facebook.
We see a lot of feedback about what we are doing and it’s receptive, appreciative, and encouraging. We feel great pride and fulfillment in knowing that we’ve had a hand in thousands switching to reusables through our quiz/chart/videos. A revolution is taking place on the topic of menstruation and we’ve been a quiet part of it for many years. Now we are hoping to grow our voices, the conversation, and our community with our videos.
Amanda is gainfully employed as a freelance graphic designer and runs her own website. It pays her bills. Kim’s other website, Dirty Diaper Laundry, is the bulk of her income and she also takes on freelance video work. One of the biggest reasons we can’t produce the videos we have planned is financial. Some of our planned videos will require us to be in the same room (travel cost implied), involve the buying of products or props, or just take a lot of time that would take us both from our families/paying work that we need to pay the bills.
For that reason we decided IF we are going to get these amazing videos made we have to fund them somehow. One method would be to have them be brand sponsored, and we aren’t opposed to doing sponsored videos that fit with our goals but this hasn’t happened yet.
Then we learned about Patreon, a crowd-funding platform for content creators (mostly YouTubers) that lets fans become patrons by pledging a monetary amount per video. It’s a really exciting concept that could help us make the videos we want and need to make. Our Trello (idea board) is full of kick-ass videos down the pipeline. As perfectionists we have a hard time just cranking out a video half-assed. When we have a concept we want to make it can take months before it is published. The “Inside Look” video had been in the works over 6 months before it saw the light of day. We certainly envy the YouTubers who live in LA with access to the studios — for us we have to set-up a whole room of our house to film in and then take it back down. After some back and forth we reluctantly agreed that we should set-up a Patreon and see what happens. Best case? It works. Worst case? It flops but at least we tried.
We find SO MUCH JOY in Put A Cup In It. The community, the FUN of creating these ideas and bringing them to life, seeing how our work helps others live a better and healthier life. We love it all. When we spend hours on the phone planning for whatever is next, it’s the highlight of our day — we spent 20 minutes laughing our asses off over rainbow poop and corn with faces (“Peeing With a Menstrual Cup” video.) If we could live on laughs alone we wouldn’t need a Patreon campaign.
The YouTube economy looks flashy but in truth, it’s only the accounts with millions of subscribers who make a sustainable income from the ads that play. For the curious, there is a great article about this on Fusion. It’s a really great read.
We have Patreon goals in mind that would help us make the videos we want to make. To be clear, if this is a total bust and we don’t hit a single goal we would be totally bummed but we wouldn’t stop creating content for this website or YouTube. It’ll just take us longer. Hitting our goals would enable us to make the videos happen sooner, and more frequently. Supporting our goals by pledging gives you potential perks as well, such as access to a private feed where we will share even more of our bloopers (they’re always hilarious and usually peppered with profanity), other potential supporter only videos, or even tangible rewards like our obscene menstrual cup pouches.