The creator economy is now worth over $100 billion, and it’s just getting started.
Many platforms have started to heavily invest in creator marketplaces and creator tools – like TikTok, Instagram, Pinterest LinkedIn. These tools help make it easier for creators to connect with their audience and collaborate with brands.
As social media platforms move more into the e-commerce space, it makes sense to invest in creators who are driving engagement, growing engaged communities, and promoting products. And if you thought the creator community was oversaturated, think again. There are thousands of creators who’ve seen huge growth within the span of a year or two – they’ve simply found their niche and stuck to it. Take @coffeebae97 who started her TikTok account in April 2020 and now has over 1.2M combined followers on TikTok and Instagram.
- Facebook has features like Stars, paid online events, fan subscriptions, and in-stream ads. All in the effort to help creators make an adequate income through the platform. It also has in the pipeline a revenue share model, one that doesn’t take a cut from the income earned till 2023.
- Instagram broadened direct payments to creators, with Badges that allow viewers to tip creators during Live sessions. Then it publicised a suite of tools like Creator Shops, a native affiliate program, gated content, and subscriptions during the inaugural Creator Week.
- Twitter has made its own moves to get a slice of the creator economy. At the start of 2021, it acquired Revue to enable earning through newsletters. Following that, it created Super Follow, a pay-to-access tweet feature, and Tip Jar, which is now called Tips. The latter permits users to make payments to creators, of which Twitter takes no cut.
YouTube has always done its utmost to capitalise on creators and retain them. It has paid them $30 billion in the last three years alone. But even the video-sharing platform made changes in 2021, moving beyond their usual revenue-share model. In May, it launched a $100 million YouTube Shorts Fund, their take on TikTok and Reels. Till now creators could collect payments through ad revenue, Super Chats, Super Stickers, official merchandise, channel memberships, and premium subscriptions. With the Shorts Funds, they get rewarded based on engagement and viewership.
So what is the future of creator economy?
According to Forbes,
• Creators will develop new websites, applications, and other products while enhancing their revenue strategies
• Creators will take on the role of entrepreneurs and establish teams to launch businesses while concentrating on their craft.
• Talent agencies and digital marketing firms will provide creators with an increasing number of options for handling content creation, acquiring tools for gaining analytic insights, and managing advertising campaigns.
• Although not all creators will be affluent, those who want to work for themselves as gig workers may be able to make a livelihood on their own terms.
Tech companies will introduce new revenue choices in an effort to keep creators and their respective fan bases active on their platforms.
To ensure less reliance on any one platform, will creators embrace platform-agnostic activities and establish themselves as independent brands? Most probably, but the future will tell.