The coming and passing of specific mediums, their control, and the ordinary consumer’s consumption habits have all contributed to the evolution of creation as we know it. Media conglomerates used to have much power over how news and entertainment were distributed. There were benefits and drawbacks to this.
These “gatekeepers” helped the globe since they ensured that most news came from several reliable sources with little chance of inaccuracy. However, inequalities arose due to the gatekeeper infrastructure, particularly for new innovators.
Anyone interested in contributing to their local, national, or international news source, for example, would almost certainly have to work for the publication.
Many newspapers allowed readers to contribute to columns and editorials. Still, major writing jobs were out of the question if you didn’t have a journalism degree and weren’t on the payroll.
Radio, television, books, movies, and magazines followed the same pattern.
The formation of each media conglomerate followed a similar pattern:
- Obtain content from a respectable creator, preferably for the media company.
- Send the content to an editor, a person, or a team of individuals (such as a marketing agency) who the media firm also employs after its creation.
- Publish the content regularly utilizing media managed by the media company, targeting the same audience.
As previously stated, this design has numerous advantages and disadvantages. It’s not all positive or negative. However, it’s unquestionably a time-saving method of creation.
However, you may see two significant flaws in those three processes: exclusivity and bias.
- To be a creator, you had to be employed full-time by the media organization or perhaps famous/prestigious enough to earn an “expert opinion,” which necessitated the acquisition of specific credentials (which isn’t always a bad thing, but some people don’t have access to such credentials). The Chicago Tribune would not want an employee working from Los Angeles, even if the person had fantastic things to say, because of the geography. Finally, numerous organizational biases exist in the workplace (CEOs mainly hiring from their alma mater, editors filling the writing room with people who think like them, or regular old prejudices like sexism, racism, or ageism).
- The content development process remains in an exclusive circle in the second step. The editor of a magazine, film or television show is also a part of that circle, adding to the exclusivity, keeping outsiders out, and encouraging one-sided opinions.
- The ability to share something is crucial to being able to generate it. That’s why the third stage harmed the ordinary inventor so much. Do you want to make a film? There was no other option for distribution than to go to a major studio. Is there a radio show? Have a good time gaining access to your own telecoms network. Do you want to publish a book? Only publishers needed printing equipment, distribution routes, and marketing staff.
As you can see, being a part of a closed group of creators makes it incredibly difficult for creative people to have their opinions heard. Yes, in the past, filmmakers, authors, editors, actors, photographers, and other creators were undoubtedly the best competent, so it’s understandable that they were hired and given the mediums and distribution outlets to communicate with the public.
However, no matter how good their jobs are, these creative minds are still individuals. Therefore, we can expect pretentiousness, elitism, and nepotism if they live in a closed-off, privileged enclave.
These small clubs are destined to become echo chambers. Even if the creators try their hardest to remain objective while still producing high-quality art and information, some people will inevitably be excluded from the conversation.
For example, you could have a reputable, amusing, unbiased, and timely newspaper run solely by men. Assume that most of the employees similarly attended Yale and grew up on the East Coast of the United States. That little group of artists, regardless of their education, talent, or unbiased moral code, is still missing women’s perspectives that none of the guys in the writing room can bring to the table. Is it likely that publications written by East Coast Ivy Leaguers will have a bias based on their personal experiences? Yes, of course. A California-born trade school graduate would have no connection with those newspaper employees.
So, we know how the media economy worked in the past and its benefits and drawbacks. However, the internet has wreaked havoc on that infrastructure. So, we’re now looking at something called the Creator Economy, which has allowed anyone to create, distribute, and receive feedback on their work.
What Is the Creator Economy, Exactly?
We’ve seen various sorts of democratization in sectors like traditional financial (crowdfunding), lodging (sharing homes/Airbnb), transportation (Uber), and many more industries as the internet have evolved.
In essence, the internet has made it easier for people to invest, run their small enterprises, and manage almost every aspect of their life. But, on the other hand, this access opens up the above-mentioned closed community, in which media companies no longer have complete control over content creation, distribution, and promotion.
Like the sharing economy, the creator economy is based on technological advances, frequently from startups. It’s a do-it-yourself (DIY) situation in which a software business releases an app that allows ordinary people to bypass the typical gatekeeper aspects of the industry and participate in something previously unavailable.
In the same way that the internet has made low-cost, instant stock trading available to the general public (formerly pricey and only available to expert traders), it has also broken down barriers erected by those media businesses.
Not only that, but the creator economy provides creators with complete business management tools for connecting with followers, marketing their products, and monetizing their work.
Here are some real-world examples of the creator economy:
- An unknown writer might avoid the exorbitant fees, gatekeepers, and distribution limits of traditional publishing by becoming a blogger, running a newsletter, accepting subscriptions through Patreon, and selling their eBook on Amazon.
- With her own paid YouTube channel, a stay-at-home mom without a telecommunications degree may establish a media empire focusing on world events.
- On sites like TikTok, Instagram, and Facebook, a fashion fan may become a social media influencer, hosting their fashion shows, giving style advice, and earning money through promotional posts, sponsorships, and ad revenue.
- With an affordable ecommerce platform like Shopify, a graphic design student may sell prints, t-shirts, and mugs from their dorm room.
- On the Anchor app, a single dad with no radio expertise may create material, distribute episodes, monetize with ads, and manage a whole community of listeners.
- A gaming hobbyist can break into the development world by producing video games on Hiberworld and subsequently monetizing a community on Epic Games.
- Using inexpensive hardware like a laptop, webcam, and social media networks like Twitch, anyone may live broadcast about their favourite hobby.
- Musicians can use a site like StageIt to make and sell music files, bypassing the necessity for a record label.
- Anyone can take their favourite hobbies and turn them into courses to educate others while monetizing the process with Teachable or Thinkific.
- With Patreon, creators can install paywalls in front of their exclusive material while keeping most of the income instead of passing them on to a middleman.
To summarise, the creator economy now provides the following benefits:
- Instead of ten prominent newspapers read by billions, we now have millions of other periodicals distributed across many platforms.
- There’s something for everyone: Whether you’re interested in extreme ironing, duck herding, or milk bottle collecting, there’s now an online group, podcast, or publication dedicated to you. In the past, finding knowledge regarding oddities and niches was difficult. Now, because of the miracle of internet algorithms, those one-of-a-kind producers can reach their target consumers.
- Passion: In the past, creators were expected to consistently provide material, even if they lacked knowledge in the field. It was usual for men to speak on women’s issues and magazine reporters to be assigned odd jobs they didn’t want. Even general reporters are thrust into a plethora of stories daily, and they can’t possibly be interested in all of them. The creator economy allows competent individuals to talk on specific subjects on a platform. Podcasts are a fantastic example: who would have guessed that mythology would be so popular?
- Access to tools: With low-cost microphones, content production software, laptop computers, and smartphone apps, creators can now produce beautiful material using everything from distribution networks to industrial equipment.
- Monetization for all: You don’t need traditional employment to gain money from your work in the creator economy. Not to mention that the money that does come in isn’t squandered by middlemen or a shady revenue-sharing deal (besides maybe a cut taken by a payment processor).
- Creators can not only create a community around their work, but they can also interact with people from all over the world.
What Is the Importance of the Creator Economy?
The creator economy is essential for a lot of reasons, but here are some of the more important ones:
The creator economy gives people the freedom to produce, distribute, and profit from their work without restrictions.
As previously said, this new content creation method transfers control from a small number of people to the artists themselves. That is what democratization is all about.
Instead of a single record label having the rights to thousands of records and receiving a cut, the artists retain ownership of their work while earning more money.
Although not perfect (it’s much more difficult for creators to handle everything themselves, and some platforms try to take advantage of creators by offering low royalty agreements or high fees), we can see that it’s a step in the right direction for ecommerce, content creation, art, and business in general.
The Issue and the Solution
In the past, there was undeniably a difficulty for creators. In the mass media, there were far too many barriers to entry. This resulted in elitism, bias, homogeneous content, and experiences not designed for the masses but rather for whatever a small number of individuals in a room wanted everyone to consume.
As a result, the solution is democratized code, apps, and distribution platforms.
This eliminates the need for middlemen, gatekeepers, or rules for creators.
Instead, they can concentrate on their art, craft, or company, reaping the benefits of praise, money, and whatever else comes as a result of their work.
Are People in the Creator Economy Making Money and Working in Satisfying Jobs?
No one wants to get involved in something that doesn’t have a chance of succeeding. So, are there any tangible, real-world examples of people and businesses profiting from the creative economy?
And, while it’s not a guarantee that you’ll make a living, it’s a good idea to research the best creators who have already built communities since you can learn from them, model your content after theirs, and even contact them if they’re in your field.
Here are some examples of well-known creators who are using democratized platforms to run their businesses:
- Hugh Howey: Often regarded as one of the most successful self-published authors of all time, Hugh Howey used the Kindle Direct Publishing eBook system and outsourced editing and cover design services, entirely obviating the need for a traditional publisher, at least early in his career. Every self-published author is a contributor to the creator economy.
- Joe Rogan: As long as they’re not part of a podcasting network, all podcasters are members of the creator community. Joe Rogan has hosted his programme and even launched his network, and formed a distribution agreement with Shopify.
- Adriene’s Yoga: She has one of the most successful yoga channels on YouTube and has monetized her work with a premium streaming app. She even has a sizable local meetup group.
- Brian Clark is the owner of the well-known Copyblogger website.
- Forever Your Betty is a fashion influencer who makes money through Instagram, an online shop, influencer marketing, and subscriptions.
- The Fantasy Footballers are many guys who host a podcast, raise money through Patreon, and maintain a vibrant fantasy football community.
- Molly Burke is a Youtuber, author, and motivational speaker who has a Patreon and a burgeoning community of bees.
- Ben Folds: The well-known artist offers a private discord channel, live streaming concerts, and music appreciation courses, as well as unique music downloads.
- Amanda Palmer: This whimsical musician and artist sell sheet music, digital files, and all sorts of interesting artwork in addition to having a vibrant Patreon page.
What is the creative economy, according to Adriene?
Yoga With Adriene gives free YouTube videos, but she makes money with her Find What Feels Good app, including premium courses, special discounts, and exclusive sessions for $12.99 per month.
What Can We Expect from the Creator Economy in the Future?
Here are some opinions on the creator economy as a whole, as well as some predictions for what to expect from specific creators in the future:
- Content will be easier to obtain than ever before. Consider research articles. They’re usually hidden from the general public in some fashion, requiring you to have a library or industrial access account. Not only that but industrial research and medical publications are typically formatted in mysterious ways and cost exorbitant sums of money for the regular person. The same might be true about courses taught by well-known experts. The masterclass is the first time we’ve seen something like it, where you don’t have to go to college, travel to that campus, or pay exorbitant tuition to learn from the most exemplary individuals in a field.
- We’ll start seeing media firms pay a lot of money to get access to creators’ ownership. Because creators don’t need specific platforms or corporations to publish their work, the media loses control over the material. Consider how Spotify paid Joe Rogan a large sum of money to make his podcast exclusive to their platform.
- For networking, cross-selling, and content production, creators will begin forming more formalized organizations with one another. This will have some drawbacks as the previous media-controlled economy, but content creators will still have complete ownership over their work.
- NFTs (non-fungible tokens) should evolve into a more purposeful manner for producers to gain money, notwithstanding their infancy. It has so much promise to make a genuinely original, verified piece of art, music, or writing and then sell it.
- Without being asked or compensated, influencers will promote brands. We’ve already seen this with Elon Musk and bitcoin and Hitech Shah and Lazy Lions, where they already own a portion of the asset. Thus, exploiting their resemblance is a sure way to boost its value and profit without ever contacting a company.
- Instead of receiving total endorsement compensation, creators will opt for equity arrangements. By requesting ownership in a growing company, great riches has been discovered. With Aviation Gin, Ryan Reynolds has made a name for himself. Why take a one-time payment when you may invest in a long-term asset?
- We’ll see new monetization alternatives regularly. NFTs have already been delivered to us by cryptocurrency.
What is the creative economy, according to Ryan Reynolds?
Rather than accepting a single endorsement check, Ryan Reynolds invested in Aviation Gin, which is a significantly more lucrative arrangement.
How to Launch Your Career in the Creator Economy
With a gig in the creator economy, you can establish a career, or at least test the waters, in various ways. The good news is that you won’t need a speciality diploma, interviews, or even leave your house to get started.
Look through the sections below to learn which platforms to use for your creations, as well as other helpful hints like how to monetize and build your audience.
In the Creator Economy, There Are Platforms to Assist You
Apps, tools, and platforms that speed up the creating process for individual entrepreneurs make up a significant component of the creator economy.
For example, to launch a morning talk show, you used to require a recording studio, a radio network, and a marketing crew. All you need now is your phone (or, better still, a desktop microphone), the Anchor podcasting app, and wherever you want to record. Anchor is a one-stop-shop for audio recording and editing, asset management, community building, distribution, and monetization.
The Anchor app includes tools for creating, distributing, and monetizing podcasts.
Whether you’re a writer, singer, live broadcaster, or course maker, almost every field has its version of this software.
Check out the following list for some of the most popular apps, software, and platforms for creator economy workers:
- Red Circle
Clubhouse (more for general audio influencers)
- For Writers
- Royal Road
- Kindle Vella
- Kindle Direct Publishing
For Ecommerce Sellers (Can Be Used By Any Content Creator)
- Big Cartel
For Course Creators
- FL Studio
- Kobalt Music
For Livestreamers and Gamers
- Stage 10
- Onyx Servers
- Epic Games
- Manticore Games
For Fitness Content Creators
- My PT Hub
- My Fanpark
For All Creators
- Keeper Tax
- Mighty Networks
- Any NFT marketplace like OpenSea
In the Creator Economy, Here’s How to Make Money With Your Content
To monetize, creators must develop trust.
Unfortunately, it’s tough to track trust during the creative process, so you’ll likely have to figure out if your audience trusts you the hard way by attempting to monetize your material and seeing if anyone is prepared to pay you for it.
However, this is all part of the learning process, and it allows you to change your strategy if you can’t persuade people to pay for your content.
But how do you go about gaining someone’s trust?
The creative economy is distinct in that fans have many options for obtaining information and entertainment. Previously, an article from the New York Times, an ABC broadcast, or a Penguin Publishing book had already earned the trust and worth.
On the other hand, a creator must first give value to the consumer; otherwise, you’ll be just another one of the thousands of unknown inventors.
As a result, the potential for monetization originates from:
Value comes first, followed by trust, and then money
Refer back to the Platforms To Help You Out In The Creator Economy section for the primary tools that offer monetization features for the tools utilized to monetize. For example, you can use Printful to sell items, Teachable to sell classes, Patreon to offer premium memberships, and Kindle Direct Publishing to sell your books.
But only after you’ve established value, which leads to trust.
The Creator Economy: Our Final Thoughts
The creative economy is still changing regularly, so it’ll be interesting to watch what the next few months, years, and decades have in store.