Do you have the ability to make an income in the creative economy?



Specific opportunities are lucrative. However, most creators must connect several sources of earnings.

The creator economy has seen a significant change. With the advent of technology and social networks, websites that allow you to paywall your work or sell it enable anyone to become a creator. It’s hard to know how much this industry is worth, though many estimate it to be approximately $20 billion and is growing at a rapid rate.

However, considering the amount of effort required to establish and sustain a community on the internet, It’s important to ask, is it feasible to live a long-term existence in the world of the creator economy?

Before we move on, it’s essential to differentiate between the influencer and the creator. Of course, there is some overlap between them. They both share posts via YouTube, TikTok, Instagram, and various platforms. But the creators tend to be more influenced by artistic pursuits. They’re primarily creating a great product, service, or even content for their target audience. An influencer, however, aims to engage their audience via their content. They typically make money through partnerships with brands or through referring followers to specific products.

In the last ten years, it’s been much more accessible for creators — visual writers, artists, musicians, and comedians to directly connect with those who wish to help support their work. (Full disclosure: I’ve been an influencer and creator on the internet for more than ten years. The blog started with a blog that led to four book deals and speaking engagements, as well as classes and even an email newsletter.)

Etsy’s creation Etsy is like a shift in the tide when anyone crafty could market their product directly to customers. There was no restriction on specific location or sale, or gallery. You were able to set your prices. Yes, Etsy took a cut; however, it gave you the sense of being entrepreneurial in a scalable way.

There are a lot of opportunities to market one’s skill set without the support of a large corporation. Newsletters can be published behind paywalls via platforms like Substack, Ghost, or even ConvertKit. Musicians, comedians, podcasters, YouTubers, and everyone else can set up accounts on Patreon and buy Me a Coffee account to help their audience contribute financially to their work.

However, earning money from these platforms is a problem for most creators.

Substack, For instance, states that it expects to see 5 to 10% of its free subscribers become paid subscribers. Creators are in charge of pricing; however, charging between US$5 and 7 dollars a month for a monthly newsletter is typical. Be aware that the US$5 from a subscriber who pays a subscription is reduced to US$4.05 when Substack’s slice, which is 10 percent, as well as the processing fee of 2.9 percent plus US$0.30.

At first glance, this seems like it could be profitable. If you can invite 500 people to sign up as paid subscribers, you can earn up to $2,025 each month, after fees but before tax. Depending on an artist’s output, this could be a substantial amount for a small quantity of effort.

Personally, however, that isn’t my experience. Even though the average open rate is above 50% for my newsletter, which is free and has a low unsubscribe rate, the transition between free and paid subscribers is not even five percent. It’s only two months yet, but I’m doing many hours of labor (2 newsletters per week) in exchange for a small return. It’s not just me who is the only person who’s skeptical of the 10 percent conversion rate to paid subscribers. Substack celebrities make thousands of dollars every month from paying subscribers.

The majority of creators realize that they’ll need more than one source of income to make a good living. This could mean multiple streams of income in the economy of creators or having a more stable job during the day to fund other projects.

Patreon has released a 2024 “Creator Census” with responses from 13,000 creators. Respondents stated that they earned 41 percent of their earnings through Patreon. The remainder of 59 percent was divided between teaching/coaching, tour brands book sales, merchandise advertising revenue and subscriptions on different platforms, downloads from digital commissions, and “a job related to my passion for creativity.” A personal income pie chart of streams would include the bulk of the slices.

Creators must realize that the tremendous effort put into an art project might not generate your total income, much less bring you wealth. A quality product, staying constant and becoming an early adopter, and having luck appear to be the key to achieving the amount needed to get to the highest levels. Every hour of creation can lead to opportunities. In today’s world of the creator economy, it is essential to be ready for what could happen if they fail.


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