Talking Growth #05: creator economy 101

October 28, 2020

Over the past few weeks, I've been doing a deep dive into the creator economy aka, the passion economy. People monetizing their skillsets is nothing new but It's fascinating seeing the tailwinds of COVID nudge people in that direction. In the future, everyone is a creator. Whether you're trying to land that job or get traction for your startup, it doesn't hurt to have built your own audience and showcase your industry knowledge.

Today's Talking Growth provides an update on my personal branding experiment, I share a new essay on the business opportunities in the creator's economy, share a marketing strategy for creators and B2C brands on TikTok, plus content from around the web.

🌱Talking Growth

The Creator Economy - In the future creators are the new brands. When you look at the data surrounding Gen-Z, 30% of Gen-Z would rather be a YouTuber or Vlogger vs. an astronaut. They don't want to be CEO's or work corporate jobs, they want to be creators.

In my recent essay, I did a deep dive into the creator's economy and the business opportunities it presents. Whether you're looking to turn your side hustle into a main hustle, or you're looking for inspiration for a new business idea, I recommend giving it a read.

Learnings/Insights of the Week

Talking Growth Social Experiment Stats

Twitter Growth from last week wasn't mind-blowing with a small increase from 32 followers to 36. Twitter will be a grind but as I get more followers, network effects should take over. Specifically, as more people follow me, Ideally more people will engage with my content resulting in additional distribution. My best performing content involved sharing my POV on brands that I studied and mentioning those brands directly in my tweet.

My theory on last week that I needed to post more consistently proved true. TikTok is similar to Linkedin where if you go longer than 30 days posting, the algorithm will punish you. For the past week, I've been posting 5-6 times a day and in that period I've grown from 404 followers to 543. The organic reach is incredibly high; however, it's not as great as it once was. This is mostly due to more advertisers coming onto the platform. Additionally, the app will lose its social appeal if everyone has over 100k followers. This is all to say, that I recommend getting on the platform ASAP.

📊Talking Strategy

Content marketing is on the upwards trend and that's because of the rising customer acquisition costs and reduction in free channels. If you're an early-stage company or solo founder, it gets incredibly hard to cut through the noise without leaning into a substantial budget.

The prime opportunity to increase the reach of your content efforts exists under #learnontiktok.

For brands, I recommend creating video tutorials or how to use content that covers personalizing or using your product. For creators, emulate the same playbook as brands; however, don't be afraid to show yourself in the video. This accomplishes a few things, one it helps showcase your product or skills, two it's an advertisement without actually being an advertisement, and three it's a way to send more traffic to your website. On the plus side, If you're new to TikTok, your first few videos get boosted by the algorithm. I recommend uploading 4x-6x videos a day and pairing that frequency with the below hash-tag strategy:

2x relevant hashtags (e.g. marketing)
2x large hashtags (e.g. learnontiktok, fyp)
1x trending hashtag

Capitalize on TikTok now before the organic reach continues to decline, and see below If you need some extra inspo for your brand.

World of Glass
5-Minute Recycle
The Golden Balance

📰From the news

iPhone 12 Announcement - Apple just announced and showcased the iPhone 12 set to be ready for pre-order on October 16th and shipping October 23rd. Yes, this means you'll have to get a new phone but at least it'll be 5G.

Disney shifts focus to streaming - of the many things COVID has taught us, one is that we now live in a digital direct to consumer world. With the success of Mulan and the closing of movie theaters, Disney recognizes the importance and opportunity of goin all in on their streaming efforts (Disney +, Hulu, and ESPN+).

🎤From the people

The Unbundling of Reddit- I recently discovered Greg Isenberg's work on Twitter after I was doing research on marketplaces. As a current growth advisor at TikTok and Founder at Late Checkout. He is ahead of the curve when it comes to communities, media companies, and marketplaces. In his essay "Unbundling of Reddit", he identifies the number of opportunities that are on the horizon as more communities leave mainstream platforms for smaller niche communities.

My .02 - Similar to my POV that creators are the new brand, I believe the unbundling of Reddit will accelerate as more creators begin building private curated marketplaces and communities.

💡 Inspo

"The only competition you should care about is your past self, your doubts and your work ethic." - Brandon Zhang

Until Next Time

I hope you enjoyed this week's newsletter. If you enjoyed what you read, forward this email to a friend. Just tell them to subscribe. Lastly, I tend to post more short-form content across social, so if you don't already, follow me and say hi.

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