Is content creation a career worth pursuing full-time? If you’re looking for a simple answer to this title question, it would be yes and no. Content creation is a career worth pursuing full-time, but like any other job, there were certain stipulations that led to the question in the first place.
In addition to working part-time as a writer, this author also works part-time as an artist who enjoys working with color and producing short videos of urban and natural settings, usually for social media. If you were to ask why this writer didn’t follow artistic passion as a full-time job, he would answer as a content creator by saying that from his own perspective, he was never able to. ‘Harness creativity to meet deadlines or call on it when the employer asks for ideas. It fluctuates randomly, has a feel-good component, and is more of a hobby than a profession. The “creation” part of content creation only applies if you create content of your own volition and not because it has been assigned to you. And this is where the contradiction between passion and responsibility arises.
Although the concept of an ideal career path is subjective, it is important to remember that an ideal job is not the same as a satisfying job. Content creation is an overly broad term that doesn’t properly describe the kind of job you’re looking for in this genre, and it carries the risk of receiving not-so-positive public response, if at all. While it’s not an ideal 9-to-5 job, the creator’s joy depends almost entirely on the reaction of their target audience in most cases.
It took five years and hundreds of videos for Marques Brownlee (MKBHD on YouTube), one of the world’s most popular tech-focused YouTubers, to reach one million subscribers, while according to Statista, the creator of TikTok and Filipino-American singer Bella Poarch grew her audience by 5,915% in 2020 alone! Although they use different platforms and media types, it is clear from their content that MKBHD has put a lot more effort and overall production into theirs. The bottom line is that when it comes to creating content, no matter how much passion or effort you put into it, it all depends on the audience.
“Creating content as a full-time job is not something realistic, especially in our country,” says Raisa Fatema, Instagram Content Developer at IBA-DU. “The two main reasons for this are that our country’s ‘reach’ to the public is rather limited compared to other countries, and that big brands will always support already successful models/actors to promote products through their content, which is detrimental to the growth of small creators.”
As a result, most content creators have no choice but to pursue their passion as a side job rather than a full-time job. In truth, the number of creators who left everything behind to focus on creating content from the start is quite small.
However, what about the traditional content creation that we are all familiar with? Content writing? Well, newspaper articles are moving away from being the mainstream media these days, if they haven’t already, so it’s harder to reach them that way.
A fellow content writer who wishes to remain anonymous says, “Content writing is something that has always been a job of passion, but it’s very different from what I expected when I started writing for a magazine. You have to put a lot of research and analysis into one page of writing, which becomes tedious if the subject is something you don’t know about, or worse, something you don’t care about Although it doesn’t always pay off, I don’t think it’s enough in our country either.”
Arid, a nine-year-old YouTuber who goes by the username MintySparkz, says, “Creating videos makes me happy. Sometimes I laugh at my own videos, even though I watched them a million times while editing and watching them. download.” When asked if he wants to be a content creator when he grows up, “astronaut” he says. Not to mention, this nine-year-old has over 500 subscribers and a video that has been viewed over 160,000 times so far.
While the above statements may conclude that creating content isn’t suitable as a full-time job, there are examples of people who started with nothing and worked their way up to become the most popular creators. Take Felix Kjellberg, aka Pewdiepie, who dropped out of college and sold hot dogs before starting out with nothing more than a cheap computer and webcam. However, not everyone is able to do this. So it all boils down to this: how far are you willing to risk your passion for content creation? Should you play it safe and keep it as a side gig, or dive in headfirst until you become the next Pewdiepie?
The author is a third year BBA student at IBA, University of Dhaka.