Almost a decade ago, content creation was a hobby, and not many were doing it. Today, creating digital content has developed into a career.
Content creators are making millions of dollars every year, but the question is how do they make money?
You might not have noticed, but social media algorithms change all the time, decreasing the organic reach of content.
You put a lot of effort into creating a post on Facebook or any other platform but end up receiving a negligible engagement. An increasing number of content creators face this problem.
The point is how content creators make money in this rapidly-evolving and competitive environment?
Whether you are an influencer, coach, or entrepreneur, you can create digital content and open up a new revenue stream.
This post will explain what a content creator is and the ways a content creator can make money.
Let’s get started!
What Is A Content Creator?
A content creator is someone who produces entertaining or educational material for their target audience. Or as I like to call it "edutainment."
Everything you see on the web is content.
For example, if you browse through Facebook, you come across 2.8 billion active users, and most of them are content creators.
You might already be creating content on social media in the form of posts and comments. But if you want to make money, you need to develop a plan and create content that keeps an audience engaged.
YouTube alone has over 37 million channels creating content, but not all of them are making money.
But it can be a pretty exciting and fun job to become a content creator. Let’s say you are a coach helping startups navigate through challenges. Now, you can use your current expertise to create digital content.
If you already have a passion for something, you don’t need to learn anything serious to be a content creator. If you are a make-up artist, you can simply use your skills and create exciting how-to videos and blogs.
On top of this, you can make as much income as you want. Since it is not a 9-to-5 job to be a content developer, you will have plenty of freedom and flexibility.
If you want to develop a personal brand, you have to create content to tell your audience who you are and what you stand for.
If you want to build a personal brand, consistency is an inevitable strategy - success will not happen overnight unless you get really lucky.
⭐Related Post: How much time does the average person spend on social media?
Different Types of Content
As a content creator, you get the opportunity to be an authentic version of yourself and create whatever type of content you want.
Here are some popular types of content to consider:
Videos for YouTube, TikTok, Instagram, etc
Blog posts, Pinterest boards
Podcasts or audio content
Ebooks, courses, and infographics
Instagram stories, reels, and guides
- Gaming and live streaming
Music and art
There is no hard and fast rule when it comes to selecting the right type of content. It all depends on what you or your audience likes to see.
If you love to create short videos, consider building a presence on TikTok or create Instagram reels, those are hot right now.
If you want to use a mix of different content types, you may want to create your own blog and share whatever you like to share.
But let’s face it.
It can be quite challenging to make money as a content creator.
Like I said before, so many people share their thoughts on the web, but not everyone understands how to build a long-term marketing plan to monetize their content or understand how to find new audiences and buyers when their existing ones run out.
So, let’s move to our main topic to explain 11 different strategies to make money as a content creator.
11 Ways To Make Money As A Content Creator
The first thing you need to understand is that you need to get a good grounding in your creative niche before creating content.
Perhaps you want to be the next Elon Musk or Rachel Hollis. The question to ask is what kind of talent you have to become a content creator. You can’t just go out and start writing and expect your efforts to produce some monetary rewards.
Here are 11 ways you can make money online as a content creator:
1. Create An Online Community
When it comes to making money online, you have to build a community or be a part of other popular communities.
A community is a platform where you attract and connect with all sorts of like-minded people. This is where your audience can get valuable advice, tips, and tricks. If you are a marketer, your audience should turn to your community to fix their marketing-related needs.
For example, when people need to get some advice on social media marketing, they visit communities like Social Media Examiner.
Likewise, when people need some DIY help, they go to channels like 5-Minutes Craft on YouTube.
To make real money, you have to do something similar to 5-Minutes Craft or Ryan ToysReview. When you create a community, your ideal audience will be comfortable and happy to be a part of it.
Let me give you another example:
We started building our community at Gary.club and digitalmarketing.org, and it is growing pretty fast right now.
2. Offer Exclusive Content
This is an obvious one.
You make money online when you offer something exclusive and exciting - It is not a one-off job. If you think you can make a couple of videos on YouTube and start earning, that probably won’t happen.
You need to be consistent, relevant, and result-focused. First, you create content to attract and build your audience and then consistently create new content.
Let’s assume that you still don’t have a following online. This is where you need your premium content to build your tribe.
There is no shortage of platforms if you have something amazing to share. Take TikTok or Clubhouse as an example. People just use their great content to start building an audience quickly.
If you get a chance to join Clubhouse, you would know how people build communities and get plenty of exposure for their content. Some people are hosting private rooms for art where they buy, sell, and trade.
Creators are even doing special NFT (non-fungible token) drops.
Exclusive product drops are a quick way to grow a fast, loyal tribe, a group of people who just love your products and will make you some cash fast.
⭐Related Post: What is the Creator Economy?
Success becomes a lot easier when you collaborate. Seriously!
Just go out and find some of the top brands, influencers, and people in your industry. See how you can serve them first before ever asking for anything.
Go like, comment, share their content and build them up the way you want someone to do for you.
Collaborations work when you take the time to build transparent and mutually beneficial relationships with people whose audience aligns with yours.
Likeminded brands and people can be your ambassadors if you follow the right strategies to build relationships.
We understand it takes a lot of effort and time to find the right people. But it’s worth your time.
Start with helping and serving others, and everything else will start to fall in line.
Building relationships online is like making friends offline. You meet someone and get to know each other. When you develop good chemistry, only then can you work on a mutually beneficial relationship.
Your goal should be to be omnipresent. Try to look into every place where your content would be appreciated and liked.
4. Use Social Media Advertising
While it is not mandatory to use paid advertising, sometimes it’s necessary to use it depending on your goals.
Social media advertising is a must if you are looking to expand your reach.
No matter how good your content is, it is becoming harder and harder to promote it organically.
Of course, it can be challenging to shift from organic social strategy to paid advertising. But it is essential to understand that social media platforms are also looking to make money.
They don’t want your content to reach millions for no reason unless your content is genuinely viral. Therefore, you must learn to run profitable social media advertising campaigns and get the extra help you need to expand your reach.
Paid social ads are a hyper-direct way to reach the people you want. For example, if you are a coach and have excellent how-to guides for your audience, you may use Facebook or Instagram ads to reach the right people and warm up a new audience. After all, social media advertising is one of the best ways to grow your brand quickly.
All the major social networks offer advertising options. However, you should not be using all of them. Just use those platforms where your people like to spend time.
For example, if your audience is business CEOs or entrepreneurs, it might help focus on Linkedin. Likewise, TikTok can be a great place to show your content if your audience is Gen Z or Millenials.
Consider running ads on social sites that are producing good results for you organically.
5. Offer A Product Or Service
Offer something your audience can’t resist. This is a proven marketing tactic to get more eyes on your content.
For example, if you have a set of super-exclusive sneakers, then create a private/exclusive sneaker drop with a limited supply. Or offer a subscription service that includes specific content for a specific person.
Or offer an exclusive NFT drop.
The purpose here is to motivate your audience or give them something that could push them to subscribe to or sign up for your offers.
There are so many things you can do to make irresistible offers. Let me give you some hints:
Free guides or ebooks
Exclusive one-time drops
Offer exclusive perks for a limited time
Be sure to offer something valuable and attractive. It is an excellent way to grow your audience quickly.
6. Use Branded Partnerships
If you want to create a sustainable stream of revenue, you need to work on your audience’s perception of your brand.
It is vital to create a one-of-a-kind experience that differentiates you from the rest of the competition. Nonetheless, creating that robust and memorable experience on your own is challenging.
Develop strong branded partnerships to give your content a real boost. A branded partnership is the process of working with other brands to share and cross-promote your content with their audiences.
For instance, if you are a fitness coach, it might be good to partner up with brands that produce weight loss products. This way, you expose your content to a new audience that might be interested in whatever you offer.
7. Sell What You're Good At
Do not try to be everything to everyone on the internet.
The internet is a competitive world where everyone is looking to get their share of attention.
If you are not clear on what you offer and who your audience is, making money online will be difficult.
So, only sell what you are good at so you differentiate yourself against the competition.
Ask yourself a simple question: why should people buy my products and use my content when they have other credible sources to get the same information and products?
This is where you understand the importance of targeting a specific segment of the market.
When you try to cater to everyone, you end up speaking to no one. So, do what you are good at and then find the right people who would love to consume your content.
8. Create Content Consistently
Consistency is key to success.
Just study some of the top-paid content creators, and you will know how critical it is to be consistent in your content creation efforts.
When you create great content consistently, you follow a specific process that improves over time.
Being a content creator looking to make a living, you can’t afford to be inconsistent. If your audience likes your content, keep giving them more, so they keep coming back.
Your audience and followers will surely turn to someone else when you stop meeting their expectations and stop producing content consistency.
At Digitalmarketing.org, we have grown our audience from zero to 50k readers in a few years. It happens because we keep producing great content regularly, and we understand how to provide content our readers love.
9. Get Tips: Use The Tipping Feature
Tipping people on social media for their content is starting to become extremely popular and mainstream.
So, here comes another way to make money as a content creator. Get tips!
Facebook recently started a tipping feature that allows Facebook users to tip their favorite content creators. People can simply buy a pack of Stars and then send them to streamers during a live session. However, this feature is only limited to gaming streams.
More and more social media platforms will introduce this tipping feature to help content creators make more money. So, get ready to create content that will generate the maximum number of tips.
OnlyFans is also an excellent platform for content creators. It enables you to make money through subscriptions, tips, and selling pictures. Your fans can send tips during a live stream or directly through your messages.
Platforms like Clubhouse are likely to introduce this feature to make things more exciting for their users.
The tipping feature will also help understand what kind of content your audience enjoys the most.
Also, look at the creator coin and how those creators innovate new ways for their fans to get cool perks, NFT drops, rewards and trade coins on the blockchain.
10. Affiliate Marketing
Affiliate marketing comes with is a huge income potential for content creators. And yes, you can make money while you sleep.
Affiliate marketing is when someone pays you a commission for sales or leads generated from your efforts.
Here is what you need to consider:
Before buying anything, people like to take advice from experts online. Now, let’s say you are quite popular among your audience, and people love to listen to your tips and tricks.
You have the power to influence your audience’s buying behavior or inspire them to buy something through your enticing content. That is where you can generate passive money through affiliate links.
How many sales or leads you generate are tracked through an affiliate link.
Not sure how affiliate links work? Let me help you out!
You place an affiliate link within your blog or site, linking to a product. Now, whenever someone clicks on that link and buys the product, you will receive a commission.
For example, if you create content about education, you can consider selling some educational products through affiliate marketing.
Another example could be putting a link in your blog for an Amazon book or partnering up with prominent influencers to sell their products and services.
We also use affiliate marketing to make money all the time. For example, we help Kartra Agency sell their products on our blog. Whenever someone buys their offer by clicking the affiliate link on our blog, we get a commission.
11. Become A Social Media Influencer
Social media influencers make millions of dollars. I am not talking about Christiano Ronaldo or Kim Kardashian.
An ordinary person with talent and limited resources can become a social media influencer and make some serious money. TikTok, for example, is a platform where anyone can show their content and grow their following.
⭐Related: How to Become A Social Media Influencer
The internet hosts all kinds of influencers. But we can divide them into the following four categories:
Nano influencers (1k-10k followers)
Micro-influencers (10k-100k followers)
Macro influencers (100k - 1Million followers)
Mega influencers (1M+ followers)
Final Thoughts + Resources
While there are tons of ways for content creators to make a living, start with the strategies I have mentioned in the blog. Feel free to experiment with different approaches and see which one works best for you.
If affiliate marketing is not working for you, experiment with something else. However, be sure to establish yourself as an authority on social media.
Work on expanding your network every day and building a strong personal brand. Take advantage of every possible opportunity you get to promote your content.
Build an audience and monetize your content the right way. Most importantly, do what you love. The money will follow you