A new report reveals the creator economy is growing rapidly, but only 12% of creators make more than 50K.
Linktree released a report on the creator economy after conducting research with the help of 9,500 creators. These creatives come from all walks of life, so this information isn’t specific just to music industry creatives. The report highlights that it’s easier than ever to become a creator.
According to the research, more than 200 million people could be classified as a creator. Stream live on Twitch or manage a Twitter Spaces channel? You’re one of them. Linktree defines a creator as anyone who uses their influence and creativity to monetize their audience – regardless of the platform. Creators are running a small business, but many of them are leaving money on the table.
Linktree says that only 12% of full-time creators are making more than $50,000 per year. Around 46% of full-time creators make less than $1,000 annually, which is a paltry sum for full-time hours. So is there a correlation between how much time someone spends on their creative endeavor versus money to be made?
Not exactly. According to Linktree’s report, 32% of creators who made at least $10K a year spent more than ten hours per week on their content. 52% of creators who made between $50-100K dedicated less than ten hours per week to making new content.
Around 66% of creators view their pursuits as a side hustle, with 36% of those only making content for less than a year. Of those that were classified as beginners, Linktree says only 6% of them have earned over $10,000 in the time they started. 35% of beginner creators have monetized their creations, but having earned enough to qualify as a livable income. A whopping 59% of beginner creators say they haven’t monetized their platform at all.
You’d also expect that brands would be the primary source of income for influencers and creators online. But Linktree says its research found that isn’t true. 70% of creators earn less than 10% of their total income from brand partnerships.
That indicates that branding deals and partnerships are neither reliable nor consistent sources of income for those in the creator economy. That means creators are likely profiting more from ad revenue, Patreon memberships, merch sales, creator funds, and other sources of income.