It wasn’t too long ago when our parents and the older generation used to control access to our devices and believed that nothing good could come from those "wretched" gadgets. Who would’ve thought that those same devices would be used by Millennials and Gen-Zs to earn millions by making fun and interesting videos which inspire people worldwide!

Welcome to the creator economy

For a long time, big media houses and advertising agencies ran the kingdom of news, entertainment and marketing. They had all the power in their hands to control what we see, wear, use and listen to.

Things changed, however, when the internet came into play, and authority was gradually decentralised and diffused among all. We discovered new and interesting content on platforms such as Youtube and Instagram, and began to appreciate content created by ordinary people like us rather than large traditional corporations.

So, what exactly is the creator economy?

According to SignalFire, the creator economy is made up of more than 50 million freelance content creators, community builders, such as social media influencers, bloggers, and videographers, as well as the software and financial tools that help them expand and monetize their businesses.

In a survey conducted by Harris Poll, in the United States, 29% kids and in the United Kingdom, 30% kids want to become famous youtube vloggers while only 11% want to become an astronaut.

The creator economy has been growing rapidly for the last 10 years, with more than 50 million content creators who have been influencing millions of people from all over the world. A whopping 1.3 billion dollars of venture capital funding went into the creator economy just in 2021!

Although it is difficult to measure the exact figure of earnings, here is a brief idea about the amount of money that flows into the creator economy:

  • According to Forbes, the most famous and high performing YouTube channels made $211 million between the months of June 2019 and June 2020.
  • Influencers like Huda Kattan, Nash Grier and Eleonora Pons can earn up to 6 figures with every post on Instagram.
  • Top Substack writers can earn up to $1 million every year.

Since 2011, Gumroad’s creators have earned more than $460M selling their content on the platform, and in 2020 creators earned $143.8M on Gumroad

What are the benefits for society?

The best part about being a content creator is you can continue working on your passion and do what you love. Creators have unique niches and abilities like vlogging, fashion influence, photography, and a variety of other activities, which they can monetize and as a result earn their livelihood.

Creator economy gives people an opportunity to leave their 9 to 5 work and break records on the internet by creating content and turning their interests into profession.

The best part is the easy accessibility of this profession where creators can create at the comfort of their own house instead of going to an office. Creators also have the freedom to pursue other passions in different fields. What more do you need when you already have a strong audience who will support and motivate you?

So how do creators monetize?

There are various innovative ways for creative people to make money. Writers, musicians, filmmakers, fashion influencers and other content creators can all share their creative concepts with an audience who will appreciate them. Apart from these, there are new niches coming up every now and then with the most famous ones being livestream gaming and podcasting. Content creators can earn money on these platforms through:

  • ADS
    Advertising is one of the first things that people think of while monetizing their content. If you are a creator who uses YouTube or other platforms like Instagram and Facebook, you may be able to earn money directly from the commercials that your platform displays through Google ads, Instagram ads and Facebook ads.

    Other ways how money can be generated through ads:

    Google AdSense
    There is a cost-per click (CPC) method where you get a chance to earn money on your creative content with just a click! AdSense works by finding advertisements that are relevant to your site's content and viewers.

    For example, if you're a beauty blogger, Google Adsense will show your readers ads for various beauty products, and you'll be paid every time someone clicks on the ad.

    Another method is the Maximum CPE (Cost-per engagement) where you decide the highest amount to be paid for an engagement where users engage with your ads for at least 10 seconds. When someone clicks on a product in your showcase ad, you will be paid accordingly.

    Facebook ads
    Did you know that Facebook is considered the most effective social media advertising platform by 96% of social media marketers? If you think that you need a tremendous budget to promote your creativity on Facebook, you are mistaken.

    It doesn't matter whether you are a well-established firm, a small business or an upcoming influencer, with a proper budget and a perspective, you can see results pretty quickly.

    After creating the ad, you need to target it to specific categories of people who are more likely to engage with your content based on interests/likes, demographics, geographies and facebook groups.

  • Affiliate marketing
    Do you know that affiliate marketing revenue is estimated to reach $8.2 billion by 2022?
    So how does affiliate marketing work?

    It is one of the oldest forms of marketing, in which affiliates are paid a commission if a sale is made as a result of the affiliate's referral. It is one of the most efficient ways of marketing since you don't have to develop and sell a product. All you have to do is enable a linked connection between buyer and seller and get your commission after the sale is completed.

    Many useful tools are available to assist you conduct market research, competitor research, track, and convert your ad campaigns, for example:

  • You will be shocked to know that Pat Flynn, a well-known affiliate marketer, boosted his monthly affiliate revenue from $8000 to $100000!

    Affiliate marketing is a separate field, so if you're interested in using it to monetize your content, look into 11 Amazing Affiliate Marketing Blogs by Julia McCoy

  • Brand collaboration
    We have all seen influencers collaborating with brands to promote their business. Did you know there's another kind of collaboration in which two brands work together to develop something new and exclusive for a campaign while also helping each other grow?

    Brand collaboration takes place in various platforms, particularly Instagram, Facebook, TikTok. The best part about brand collaboration is it is 25 times cheaper than usual digital ways of advertising.

  • Donations
    The major crowdfunding platforms, such as Kickstarter, Indiegogo, and GoFundMe, are all quite well-known.

    Due to these platforms, it is no longer required for new businesses to invest large amounts of money on product design or rent. All they need is proof that they have a strategy for their product and are not just taking advantage of people's goodwill under false pretences.

    When deciding on your fundraising goals, such as how much money you'll need to finish the project, you should be extremely careful and keep your investors informed how the product is progressing, when it will be available, and so on. These platforms also allow you to reward your investors with discounts and free products which will definitely put a smile on the face of your supporters!

  • Tipping for content
    Instead of setting up a recurring donation to your favorite creator, there are a few platforms that allow one-time donations, which is easier for fans. Creative platforms like Ko-fi, Patreon and Buy Me a Coffee give creators the platform to accept financial support from fans and therefore it is not a surprise that almost every major social media network has recently added tipping as a feature.

    This allows people to directly support their favourite celebrities in real time. Creators can focus on making niche content designed to get their biggest fans to pay, and is advantageous for platforms as they can earn a cut while attracting creators without much work. Isn’t it a win-win situation for everyone?

  • Paid Subscriptions
    Just like the membership fee that we need to pay at our gym, we need to pay a subscription fee to our favourite communities and websites to keep watching their content. YouTube Premium is a paid subscription service that allows fans to view and support their favourite video creators without being interrupted by advertisements.

    Check out the guidelines to make money on Youtube with paid subscriptions. Apart from that, Spotify premium is also a similar paid subscription application where you can listen to the music by upcoming musicians with no ads.

  • Courses
    One field that has experienced tremendous expansion recently is the demand for online reliable courses. In the future, it's only going to get higher -the global eLearning market is predicted to expand to $375 billion by 2026, from $200 billion in 2019.

    There are platforms like Kajabi and Teachable that help you to create and sell courses like interior decoration, pottery, cooking, fitness and other valuable courses that will help your audience to gain knowledge about that particular field as well as help you to earn a large amount of money. Simply brush up on your talents and sign up for these platforms, and you'll be ready to share your creativity with the world!

  • Views
    You will be shocked to know even if a YouTube channel does not have millions of subscribers, it can be monetized. Your earning potential is decided not only by the amount of subscribers and views you have, but also by the level of interaction you generate, the type of content you make and the income sources you pursue.

    Let's check out the top 3 highest paid youtubers:
    • Ryan Kaji with the channel name Ryan's World. This 9 year old boy earns $38.9 million with 12.2 billion views and 41.7 million subscribers.
    • Jimmy Donaldson with channel name Mr. Beast. He earns $31.6 million with 3 billion views and 47.8 million subscribers.
    • Dude Perfect is a comedy channel on Youtube made by 5 best friends. They earn $30.3 million with 2.77 billion views and 57.5 million subscribers.

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