200 million people make money from creating digital content

Link treefresh out of a nine-figure funding round that valued it at $1.3 billion, shares some details on how much money other people do.

The company link-in-bio, which has experienced rapid growth in its category of influencers, has published its Creators Report 2022. The report used data from over 9,500 creators make bold claims about the size of the online video industry. Specifically, Linktree claims that the so-called creator economy – the global community of artists, thinkers and doers who monetize their content on social media – now includes approximately 200 million individuals who earn money.

JThis means that if the “creator economy” was its own nation, it would be the eighth most populous country in the world. But even though there’s a whole world of people monetizing their content, that doesn’t mean those creators are bringing home millions. In fact, Linktree’s report notes that the majority of the creator economy is made up of “semi-pro” creators who have between 1,000 and 10,000 subscribers. The type of people you read about in our YouTube Millionaires columns represent only a fraction of the internet’s creative community.

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LA-based creator platform Collaboration reacted to the 2022 Creators Report. “68% of part-time creators earn less than $1,000. This essential research highlights how difficult it can be to be a creator and how important it is for creators to find partners, platforms and services that streamline monetization opportunities,” said Collab’s Chief Strategy Officer. Eric Jacks in a report. “Linktree does just that, acting as a gateway to other revenue streams that contribute to monthly income and make the creators’ job a little easier.”

Here are some other key figures from the findings presented by Linktree:

Branded deals aren’t everything.

When you see how much individual influencers earn from their sponsored posts, it’s easy to be blinded by dollar signs. In truth, Linktree says that 70% of creators derive less than 10% of their revenue from brand partnerships. The majority of creators surveyed have no deals with a brand, and even among those who do, the majority take it home less than $100 per paid post.

In its report, Linktree cited the creator of TikTok Kitty Cat Mat. “The biggest monetization challenge is deciding which opportunities align with my content standards,” he said. “Money takes precedence over my long-term goals.”

It’s good to have a niche.

Two-thirds of creators in the Linktree sample consider themselves “niche builders”. This means they serve viewers who have a deep interest in a single topic.

Since niche creators focus on specific topics, it can be easier for them to negotiate the branded content landscape. According to the Linktree report, new niches are 2% more likely to earn six figures a yearand they are 11% more likely have published at least one piece of branded content.

Getting started is hard – and it doesn’t get any easier.

Once upon a time there was a gold rush in the online video industry, but these days, budding prospectors have more competition than ever. More than a third of creators Linktree analyzed has only been creating content for a year or less, and among these “newbie creators”, only 6% have made more than 10,000 from their work. 59% of them did not activate monetization at all. It’s almost as if these newcomers can use a link service in the bio to help them earn money.

Of course, even if these newbies could graduate and get into content creation, their challenges wouldn’t go away. Alone 12% of full-time creators surveyed by Linktree earn more than $50,000 per year. Maybe that’s why so many of them are sold out – Linktree said that 13% of full-time employees are “extremely/constantly stressed”.

To read more information from the Creators Report 2022, go to the Linktree website.


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Jenny T. Curlee