How To Become A Digital Creator in 5 Easy Steps
Seeing content creators travel the world as digital nomads and working from their phones might make you wonder how to become a digital creator yourself! After all, the lives of digital creators can seem glamorous at times.
As the boss and owner of your digital creator business, you can choose who you work with, set your rates and hours, travel when and where you want, and live the life of a digital nomad if you so choose.
Just know that while it might seem like the perfect life, like any job, there are drawbacks.
Inconsistent and unstable income, stressful work at times, the pressure to produce high-quality, engaging content, and high competition, to name a few.
Still, it’s a career that people continue to pursue every year. And if you’re considering becoming a content creator, I will share 5 simple steps to help you on your journey.
You'll learn about what steps to follow, plus the skills needed, potential pay, and more.
Let’s get into it!
- What Is A Digital Creator?
- 5 Steps For How To Become A Digital Creator
- What Skills Do You Need To Become A Digital Creator?
- How Much Do Digital Creators Make?
- Can Anyone Be A Digital Creator?
- What Tools Do You Need To Become A Digital Creator?
- Bottom Line on How To Become a Digital Creator
What Is A Digital Creator?
Digital creators are content creators that create and produce content over the internet. The digital content can be in the form of:
- Blog post
- Social media content
- Digital art
Digital creators use content creation and editing tools to make content across various platforms and networks like Instagram, YouTube channel, Medium, a website or blog, etc. And they can make content for their own personal brand, clients, or both!
Developing content for your own brand will help you build, develop, and connect with your target audience. And that connection can translate to traffic and sales for you and your eventual clients.
For example, after growing a TikTok personal brand to 50,000 followers, you can start selling digital products to them and make money from digital product sales. You can also promote brand partnerships and help brands expose their products to your audience and benefit from increased brand awareness, traffic, and sales.
Overall, building up your personal brand as a digital creator can prove very fruitful!
5 Steps For How To Become A Digital Creator
Becoming a digital creator starts with this simple 5-step process:
- Find your niche
- Develop your personal brand
- Create a content calendar
1. Find Your Niche
A niche is the main topic you want to focus on. It’s important you start by choosing a niche for your content creator business so you can start branding yourself as an expert in that industry.
Many digital creators are nicheless, but I think picking a niche is a better choice. You can hone in on one thing and develop content around one core topic instead of many interests.
Examples of niches include:
- Home decor
You can choose a hobby, interest, passion, or skillset you have as your niche. This is the first critical step in starting your digital creator business.
Once you’ve identified your niche, it’s time to move on to developing your personal brand.
2. Develop Your Personal Brand
Building and developing your personal brand as a content creator is about cultivating your online reputation and image as an expert in your niche.
You can do this by:
- Consistently creating and publishing content in your niche
- Being engaged with your audience
- Crafting and demonstrating your unique value proposition and also,
- Providing feedback to others and being receptive to feedback
This is a key piece to becoming a digital creator.
Build up your image and reputation in your niche so you can be seen as an expert in your industry.
Creating content in your niche will help you brand yourself as an expert. You can contribute in meaningful ways by:
- Writing blog posts
- Creating videos
- Posting to social media
- Doing speaking engagements, and also in other ways
This takes time and consistency. Brand building doesn’t happen overnight. But you can see growth happen over time. Just continue to measure these benchmarks so you can see how your brand is evolving.
Building engagement within your audience is about starting and keeping the conversation going. When creating content, ask your audience a question, encourage interaction, poll them, and make the process fun.
Build real relationships and be authentic in this process.
Create Your Unique Value Proposition
Creating and demonstrating your unique value proposition means you define what sets you apart from the competition.
For example, if you’re a finance digital creator, what makes you different from the hundreds of other finance digital creators?
Your unique value proposition tells your audience what makes you special and why you're different from other digital creators in your niche.
What do you bring to the table?
Your experience, skills, and background.
Use this to illustrate what makes you unique in the sea of creators on the web.
Offer And Receive Feedback
Then lastly, nurture feedback. This is a big indicator of emotional intelligence.
For digital content creators, you should be able to:
- Critique others
- Give constructive feedback, and
- Be able to receive feedback
This is a skill that does not come naturally to everyone.
But it’s an important part of personal brand development, and it’s a skill you can flex and stretch over time to improve.
3. Create A Content Calendar
Content calendar creation is about making a structured outline of your content schedule. It’ll help you create and post content consistently, keeping you on track.
- Set goals: Create goals for yourself and your digital content, ensuring they are actionable and measurable. Measure your success and check in on your progress often.
- Choose content types: Figure out what kind of content you’ll create and publish (podcasts, blog posts, social media posts, etc.).
- Choose your content topics: This should align with your niche and will be sub-topics that match your target audience’s interests, questions, and problems.
- Plan your content: Organize your content for the period, accounting for special events, holidays, or specific campaigns during that timeframe.
- Outsource (optional): Assign responsibilities to your team as needed. For example, you might outsource your social media captions to a copywriter or use AI art tools to help you create thumbnails for your YouTube video covers.
- Publish, monitor, and analyze: Put your plan into play! Once it's up, it's time to monitor and analyze the results. Learn from what’s successful and what’s not, adapt as needed, and keep going.
Networking is relationship building. You will connect with other peers in your industry who you can help and who can help you.
Today, there are plenty of opportunities to network, both online and in person.
You can attend in-person conferences and events to connect with others in your field. You can also attend virtual summits and virtual conferences, online workshops, and other events happening online.
Joining groups like Facebook groups, niche-focused subreddits, and other online communities are a great way to connect, too!
Monetizing your digital creator business can happen in various ways!
And the more income streams you activate, the more money you can make.
- Brand deals/sponsorships: This is about working with companies that pay you to share them with your audience, called influencer marketing. You can learn how to get sponsors to your blog, social media, podcast, etc. to make money from sponsored partnerships.
- Ads: Native ads and display ads are a smart way to make money passively as a digital creator. This can work with platforms like a personal blog, YouTube, and other platforms that partner with advertisers and publishers.
- Sell products: Create digital or physical products that you can sell to your audience, like ebooks or online courses on the digital side. Or print-on-demand products like t-shirts, coffee mugs, and other physical products.
- Sell services: Create and sell services to help your audience, like coaching, consulting, or auditing services, to name a few.
- Affiliate marketing: Join affiliate networks and promote products that earn you a commission when someone clicks and buys through your affiliate link. Affiliates like Eric Worral who makes $40K/month from YouTube, make a full-time income with affiliate marketing.
What Skills Do You Need To Become A Digital Creator?
Here are some skills that you need to be a digital creator:
- Content creation: Be able to create content, whether writing blog posts, producing podcasts, or creating social media posts.
- Design: The ability to create visually designed content. Being able to use design software is helpful, like Canva or Adobe products.
- Technical: The ability to understand and use digital tools and software for content creation and other purposes. This is about being tech-savvy and having the ability to adapt to learning new tools and software.
- Editing: Having photo or video editing skills means you can take raw photo/video footage and refine it to its polished final version. You’ll be using editing tools and software for this so being familiar with digital tools and programs is essential.
- Communication: Possessing strong communication skills so you can effectively communicate with peers, clients, and your target audience. This is a vital skill to have and one that can be refined over time. You’ll use communication in every part of this business, from responding to audience comments/questions/messages to emailing clients, providing, and receiving criticism.
- Digital marketing: Knowledge of digital marketing principles like SEO, email marketing, and social media marketing. This vital skill will help you research effectively for your audience, find relevant keywords for your niche, and also use social media for marketing purposes.
How Much Do Digital Creators Make?
Digital creators can earn a very lucrative living. But, all digital creators don’t necessarily earn a full-time income.
According to ZipRecruiter, the average salary of a digital creator in the United States is $42/hour, or roughly $87,000/year, assuming a full-time 40-hour/workweek.
Here are additional examples of digital creator salaries:
- $52K to $670K per year, based on this poll
- $5K/month average from affiliate marketing alone for this Instagram influencer
- $6K/month from a podcaster who gets 60K weekly downloads
You can see that digital creator salaries can vary a lot. It’s based on several factors: follower count, niche, audience, engagement rates, etc.
But, in the end, is it possible for digital creators to make a full-time income?
Yes, absolutely! And the examples above are proof!
Can Anyone Be A Digital Creator?
Yes, anyone can be a digital creator. It just takes a passion for your craft, the time to start, and the commitment to follow through and stay consistent with this business.
Digital creation is perfect for anybody who enjoys teaching or being creative.
Above all, you want to create something you're proud of.Richard Branson
What Tools Do You Need To Become A Digital Creator?
You’ll need a computer and an internet connection. Photo/video production, editing software, and other tools may also be needed.
Some beginner-friendly content creation tools you may consider getting are:
- Canva: An easy-to-use graphic design tool that you can use to design graphics from the hundreds of templates they offer (i.e. YouTube thumbnails, resumes, Pinterest pin graphics, email headers, presentation slides, and more).
- Link Whisper: An internal linking tool to streamline your blog posts' internal linking process, which are great for SEO purposes.
- SEMRush: A keyword research and SEO tool to help with competitive analysis, content and market analysis, website audit, analytics, and 50+ more tools to help you grow.
The tools you’ll need and get the most use out of will depend on the kind of digital creator (blogger, podcaster, etc.) you are and what kind of content you’re producing.
Bottom Line on How To Become a Digital Creator
If you’ve been bit by the content creation bug and want to know how to become a digital creator, I hope this guide is helpful to you.
I love that literally anybody can be a digital creator nowadays.
You just need to start your journey of becoming a successful digital creator. Choose your niche and social media platform or medium of choice, start creating quality content, map out your content plan, network, and build up your personal brand!
Above all, your passion for creating online and your commitment to this business can help you go far and succeed as a digital creator.
There’s no better time than now to be a digital creator. If you’re truly interested in trying this, take action and start now!
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