Nature abhors a vacuum, and the twin strikes by the Writers Guild of America and Screen Actors Guild have led to a possibility for social media influencers and creators to fill the dearth of original content for consumer audiences. As the creator economy is set to shift again, marketers may need to reconsider how they work with these partners, including when it comes to media strategy.
“The [Hollywood] strikes … have not directly bolstered the creator economy,” according to a recent “Influencer Marketing 2023” report from Insider Intelligence and eMarketer. “Creators is usually a goldmine of talent and content, and their power extends far beyond social media.”
Though many creators are standing with striking writers and actors and refusing content deals or partnerships with studios (while attempting their very own unionization efforts), only 38% agree with the guidance to refuse deals that promote already-struck work, according to Mavrck. This presents a possibility for each creators and media corporations to produce fresh content because it is needed.
Social ad spending, a measure that features YouTube, still dwarfs influencer marketing and is projected by Insider Intelligence to reach $83.7 billion this yr. But influencer and creator marketing is forecast by the firm to grow 3.5 times faster than conventional social spending in 2023. At the identical time, creators are branching beyond social channels, comparable to free ad-supported television, or creating their very own multi-channel media brands.
“Social platforms are actually a launchpad, slightly than a final destination, for a lot of creators,” the report said. “While the platforms are still the fundamental way most creators construct audiences and make cash through brand sponsorships, being a content creator is now a profession path that may lead to becoming a business owner, an investor — or an entertainer.”
Creator star power
Though only a couple of current content creators have successfully made the jump from social media to more mainstream channels, there is a growing consumer appetite for more to occur. Nearly two-thirds of U.S. consumers 18 to 24 and nearly half of those 25 to 34 were likely to watch a scripted TV show or movie featuring their favorite creator, according to an August 2023 CivicScience survey cited by Insider Intelligence.
“While it’s clear that creators develop some of probably the most engaging social content, many social and entertainment platforms have yet to treat creators as true performers and producers — and revenue generators,” according to the Insider Intelligence/eMarketer report. “The current gatekeepers of creators’ content may have no selection but to change their mindset and expand their strategies to reach creators’ audiences on this latest environment.”
As those strategies change, they might upend the present dynamic between creators, marketers and the platforms where the content appears. Already, creators are diversifying their revenue streams, comparable to through blogs and e-mail newsletters. Between 2021 and 2023, the number of creators who made money from these first-party platforms increased by 15 percentage points, while the share who made money from brand sponsorships through social media fell by 9 percentage points, according to Mavrck data cited by Insider Intelligence. Just one-quarter of the pool surveyed by Mavrck earned income from social media creator funds, a tactic platforms have used to try to attract latest and diverse talent to their services.
With these diversified revenue sources — some creators like podcaster Alex Cooper and YouTuber MrBeast have even launched their very own networks — the balance of power is shifting in favor of the creators who generate engagement (and thus promoting dollars) for the social media platforms.
“Social platforms need creators greater than ever,” according to the report. “As entertainment corporations turn to creators to help market their productions and fill the content void, many more creators have gotten aware of their value.”
As a result, marketers will need to adjust their creator relationships accordingly. In addition to the paid ads which have grow to be the bread-and-butter of marketers’ social media strategies, the report recommends they consider creator partnerships that include other media, particularly television and video.
Similarly, media corporations — already hit hard by the Hollywood strikes — should re-evaluate their work with various creators. Nearly two-thirds of 18 to 24-year-olds said they might be likely to subscribe to a streaming service that provides creator content, CivicScience’s survey found. Partnering with creators generates opportunities for brand spanking new subscribers or might help justify subscription price hikes.
“Partnering with creators or incorporating creator content into show and movie libraries could help struggling video and TV producers appeal to younger viewers — and proactively stave off competition from creators,” concludes the Insider Intelligence report.
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