How about the verb "to pander to sb's tastes" and the noun "a pander" or "a panderer"?
Definitions in the Collins English Dictionary Online:
- (intransitive) followed by to to give gratification (to weaknesses or desires)
- (archaic when transitive) to act as a go-between in a sexual intrigue (for)
- a person who caters for vulgar desires, esp in order to make money
- a person who procures a sexual partner for another; pimp
These words are very much about pleasing someone in order to gain an advantage at their expense. And payment is recognition of some sort.
The Cambridge Dictionary Online has:
to do or provide exactly what a person or group wants, especially when it is not acceptable, reasonable, or approved of, usually in order to get some personal advantage:
It's not good the way she panders to his every whim.
Political leaders almost inevitably pander to big business.
The Merriam-Webster Dictionary Online has:
a) a go-between in love intrigues
2: someone who caters to or exploits the weaknesses of others
And I have just come across the pun "a pander bear", on the Internet, defined as
a candidate running for political office who shamelessly attempts to lure in votes by making patronizing and empty concessions and shows of support for particular special interests (www.urbandictionary.com)