One of my favorite parts of Ungated is iterating it over time. Nothing here is set in stone. As I learn and grow, the business, and my messaging, evolves as well.
That's why I'm keeping the V1 of my "about" page untouched. Because frankly, it's not very good, and that's ok. It was a jumping off point. It was enough for me to get started and start exploring. And without that exploration, I wouldn't be where I am today.
So my hope is that we can all look back at things like this, and realize that iteration is the whole game. There is no such thing as perfection. Not today, and definitely not back on day one.
Anyhow, hope you enjoy V1, where I emphasize the idea of 1,000 True Fans A LOT 😅
1000 True Fans sounds great, doesn’t it?
Spending your days creating work you love, all while knowing your fanbase will reward you for it.
No bosses. No gatekeepers. No middle men.
Just a small, but mighty business that can sustain you—creatively and financially—for decades.
It’s not easy, of course.
Getting one stranger on the internet to pay you $100/year is daunting. Getting 1000 to pay in perpetuity can feel impossible.
But it’s clearly not. Look around and you’ll see a handful of artists and creators thriving, and living this dream.
The big question is… how?
What are the practical steps you can take, as a creator, to start earning true fans?
What does it take to stand out in this noisy world, and be someone’s favorite creator?
When I look around, I see bits and pieces of those answers scattered everywhere.
They’re buried beneath mountains of hyperbole and get rich quick nonsense. They’re buried in decades of research on group psychology, identity, and creativity.
I don’t know about you, but I figured it was about damn time for someone to pull these pieces together.
Welcome to Ungated, the missing instruction manual for 1000 True Fans.
Ungated is a micro-publication for entrepreneurial artists and creators.
It exists to democratize 1000 True Fans. To make it accessible to anyone bold enough to take it.
For the entire year of 2021, we’ll be exploring every nook and cranny of this surprisingly deep topic.
We’ll get into the weeds of niching down, positioning, marketing, and delighting your fans.
Everything here has one mission: help you get to the point were strangers on the internet love you so much they happily pay for years to come.
If that sounds good to you, join us.
Who am I?
Howdy! I’m Rob Hardy, and I’ll be your true fan tour guide.
I’m a filmmaker, musician, and marketer.
After film school, I was convinced I’d be the next Kubrick. It only took a year for me to realize that wasn’t gonna happen.
So I did the sensible thing, and started working in marketing.
For years, I consulted with a variety of startups, publications, and education companies. My specialty was helping them earn lifelong customers through a combination of content, email, and direct response marketing.
At a certain point, though, I realized everything I was doing could work for the creative community.
And that sent me on a mission for the last few years to deeply understand how true fans come to be, and how creatives can make it happen.
Looking forward to sharing what I’ve learned.
Let's do this.