By Jessica Patrick, Vice President, Influencer Marketing & Eunice Kim, Digital Manager
Identity Cultivation Unleashes New Creator Class
As our time spent online continues to grow, so too has the cultivation of online identity. Lured by easy ways to publish, instant feedback and the chance to become ‘internet famous’, a growing number of everyday users are shifting gears from silent viewers to active players on the platforms they engage with the most – especially TikTok. And with this, a new crop of makers is emerging.
What to Expect
HubSpot revealed that 30 percent of 18-to-24-year-olds and 40 percent of 25-to-34-year-olds now call themselves content creators. Among the more than 50 million independent content creators online, you will find students, doctors, stay-at-home parents, CEOs, and everyone in between. New people are joining the creator pool every day with the intention of deepening their relationships with online communities. Platform algorithms which increasingly amplify novel, high quality content – even from people who don’t yet have giant followings – can make anyone with a unique perspective influential, fast.
These talented makers are developing content that increasingly competes with brand owned, highly produced content and among many audiences, their contributions are favored. We expect this trend to only accelerate in 2023, further diversifying the pool of creators on every platform and increasing the need for brands to collaborate with diverse talent to tell their stories authentically.
How Brands Can Win
These developments mean there is no shortage of content creators to partner with, no matter how specific the need or niche may be. Proactivity is key: brands that build relationships with emerging creators – regardless of their followership – will win. Instead of evaluating creators by their audience size alone, consider other key factors like engagement of their fans, unique content creation skills and alignment with your company’s mission.
Think beyond traditional influencer partnerships that only spark content and conversation on their channels. Lean on them for their expertise and find creative ways to leverage their skills. Here are a few ways to partner with the new creator class:
- Launching your brand on TikTok but lack original content? Partner with up-and-coming creators to build a library of content which can be utilized for evergreen.
- Bring on creators who are in your vertical as consultants. Request their input as you develop marketing campaigns. Take it a step further by gathering insights from their community through platform tools like polls on Instagram Stories to gain invaluable feedback.
- Collaborate with up-and-coming creators to produce assets specifically for paid media. Test out different optimizations, as well as different audiences, placements, and ad copy to improve your ads.
- Consider how content crafted for social can be repurposed beyond a creator’s platform including the potential for it to be repackaged for display advertising on the open web.
Why it Matters
With the growth of the creator economy, there will be more opportunities in 2023 to partner with creators in ways that play to their strengths and are tailored to help your company achieve its goals. Approaching partnerships through a cookie-cutter lens discounts each creator’s unique voice and skill set, which in turn limits the potential for their audiences to engage with the partnership content. As you explore these limitless options, embrace the opportunity to experiment, test, and learn.