The Native Creators
The beginnings of a new kind of workforce and the digitization of the "American Dream"
There's never been a better time to be a creator or entrepreneur!
The space is evolving at an incredible pace and it's unlikely to slow anytime soon. It’s an exciting time for creators and personality-led brands.
From new features on major platforms like Instagram, to the explosion of creator tools, to the rise of new industry thought leaders and operators, there is also a growing number of official programs and grants available to support creators. That’s exactly what we're exploring in this post!
Announcements are made all the time, so watch this space! We’ll be updating this post over the weeks and months ahead to reflect the latest programs and grants available for creators and entrepreneurs.
TikTok is a massively popular short-form video platform. There are many elements that go into making it such a fun and expressive tool, and there's big business behind the new creators the platform is empowering.
Snap is the maker of Snapchat, a platform pioneer in many ways. Snapchat was best known early on for its disappearing messages, and more recently for its creative augmented reality (AR) filters and effects.
Snap has several programs, including the AR Creator Fund, to encourage more people to make these cool, viral filters. It also introduced the Spotlight program, which provides more than $1 million every day to creators who produce top Snaps on the app’s Spotlight feed!
The original creator platform, YouTube is still among the leaders when it comes to supporting creators. Even with the occasional controversy and increasing competition from apps like TikTok and Snapchat, YouTube remains recognized as a "serious" creator platform and has developed many resources and programs over the years. You can find out more here.
Patreon is one of the original ways to collect payments directly from your fans and supporters. The platform has been supporting and building the Creator Economy for several years. It previously launched the Patreon Creators’ Grant to support budding creators with an infusion of cash.
Pinterest is the most recent social platform to announce a creator program. It enters the fray with its Creator Fund, part of the platform’s Creator Code program. The fund is still in the early testing phases and is available only to creators in the United States (for now).
Clubhouse has been the talk of the (internet) town for months! It recently unveiled its first creator program which aims to support and accelerate audio-first creators.
If Clubhouse is all about audio, Substack is dedicated to the written word. Having navigated an incredible growth year, Substack is further enabling independent writers with the launch of its writer's grant program.
Kajabi is a pioneer in the self-hosted/branded course space, with a focus on creators working in the knowledge business field. The platform launched a program called the Think It, Build It challenge to help aspiring knowledge entrepreneurs get their start.
Facebook has become a massive platform with acquisitions in several spaces. It has always invested in excellent resources for small businesses and influencers, and creators are no exception! Check out all the great resources here.
Since being acquired by Microsoft in 2016, the original professional network has steadily evolved. While staying true to its roots, the platform recognizes the importance of creators and sees them as the next generation of entrepreneurs and small businesses. In turn, the platform recently announced new features and programs of its own to support the growing creator community.
Shopify was ahead of the curve when it launched its Build A Business Competition over a decade ago. That competition spawned some incredible success stories.
While the program isn't currently active, the Canadian e-commerce company has hired former adidas executive, Jon Wexler, as VP of its creator and influencer program. We definitely recommend keeping a close eye on what he does…
Creators are the new entrepreneurs and small businesses—and their creativity, energy, and innovation aren’t going anywhere!
The world’s biggest platforms are increasingly recognizing this shift and realizing the demand for incentives and financial support to attract and retain these creators—or risk losing them to the new platforms and tools that come onto the market each year!
If you're just getting started in the Creator Economy or looking to take your craft and brand to the next level, checkout the programs that are relevant to the platform(s) where you're most active. They’re all designed to help you do more of what you love and build a bigger, stronger audience.