The Creator Economy is a network of independent professionals, including the self-employed, solopreneurs, and freelancers, who earn money by creating and distributing digital content. An impressive 8.1 million creators in the U.S. were monetizing their content in 2022—a 14% jump from 6.9 million the previous year.
In terms of the content produced, the Creator Economy is diverse. Teachers, photographers, writers, artists, entertainers, videographers, influencers, gamers, thought leaders, and many others monetize their knowledge or skills by creating and distributing online content. They can be found on YouTube, TikTok, Twitch, Apple Podcasts, blog platforms, and any place else where digital content is consumed.
This specialized group of independent professionals is passionate about their work and enjoys being their own bosses. Its members are also highly entrepreneurial, and though they might mainly serve content directly to their audiences, they are also open to creating new revenue streams. Enterprises can partner with them in innovative and mutually beneficial ways.
Engaging with creators can benefit enterprises through new types of connection, including:
The Millennial/Gen Z Connection
Independent creators create and distribute their content on platforms that are heavily used by younger generations—for example, YouTube, Instagram, Twitch, and TikTok. Over 70% of creators are under 40 years of age, which tends to establish a peer-to-peer interaction with audiences. Relating as peers with content that is popular with younger audiences, these content creators can offer high-value insights and direction to enterprises that want to attract these generations as customers or members of the workforce.
The Social Connection
Social media is the connection most pointed to when considering how creators can offer value to enterprises. Creators tend to swim in social media. They are savvy communicators who understand what resonates with their audiences. Enterprise social media marketing managers can tap into this knowledge by partnering with creators in innovative campaigns.
The Worker-Creator Connection
Worker advocates can be the marketing secret sauce for many companies. Research has shown that business content shared by workers gets far higher engagement than content shared through company channels. A steady flow of creator-generated materials for employees and contractors to easily share can turbocharge brand awareness and online audience engagement.
Hiring independent creators opens opportunities for innovative communications throughout the company. For example:
- A variety of novel content can be pushed out to prospects and customers by the sales team on a periodic basis
- Creator-generated content can become integral to sales meetings and conferences
- Creators can be part of a tradeshow booth to innovatively support the theme (e.g., podcasting from the booth, digital art offered to attendees, videos included in booth presentations).
- HR and leadership can partner with creators to implement fresh and engaging internal communication initiatives
A Mutually Beneficial Partnership
With strong technical skills and clear insight into the audiences they serve, members of the Creator Economy can help enterprises authentically interact with stakeholder groups through relevant content. In turn, working in partnership with companies can offer creators additional revenue streams as well as opportunities to create new forms of content.
Get more details about the Creator Economy through MBO Partners’ 2023 Creator Economy Report.