Nigerian content creators reveal the secrets of their success
Since becoming available to the general public in the early 90s, the Internet has connected people in ways that were previously considered impossible. The more people have started using the internet, the more digital entrepreneurship has become a thing.
In a study by Forbes in 2021, digital entrepreneurs were valued at $20 billion, with estimates that they could reach a market of $104.2 billion in 2022. In another recent stat published by Policy Circle, the creator economy contributes just over 6.1% to the global market. gross domestic product, representing on average between 2% and 7% of national GDPs worldwide. It is safe to say that these statistics confirm that the creator economy offers a new generation of business opportunities, positively impacting lives and growing the country’s economy. Digital entrepreneurs are part of the system that makes up the global creator economy.
People who started out as random internet users realized they could make viable careers by leveraging social media, software and digital financial tools to monetize their skills and knowledge as content creators, influencers and YouTubers.
The creative economy is becoming one of the largest employers of labour. Young Nigerians have turned what was once considered informal labor into a viable industry, creating jobs not only for themselves but for others, and largely responsible for exporting Africa’s content across the continent and the world.
According Douglas KendysonCEO of Selar.co – an e-commerce platform that allows creators to monetize their skills through digital products – “The economic contribution of the creator economy is unique because even though most creators start out on their own, it’s never a one-man show for too long. Creators become employers of labor with many internet skills because they cannot perform all of their business functions over time, so they tend to hire digital marketers, designers, copywriters, etc. .
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Different entrepreneurs shared their thoughts on the state of the creator economy. With a few simple answers, Tayo Aina, Nelly Naijabrandchic, Salem King and Mitchelle Chibundu share their journey to becoming established creators.
The mindset of creators shifts from passion to profit. Has this always been the intention of your business?
Popular creator and influencer, King of Salem describes it as “a change of mindset and creators realizing that what we do out of passion can be financially rewarding. I started out trying to have fun not knowing that people could pay to access my content and my community. I realize that I have to build a product around these things and put a price on it. I also realize that I have to put a price on my time.
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Nigerian entrepreneur, travel YouTuber and vlogger, Tayo Aina said “When I started as a YouTube creator, it was just a form of expression, and I didn’t know I could make money out of it. I just wanted to create content, and I started learn how the platform works, and from there I started creating my content and pushing it on the platform with no idea how much I could earn. Gradually, after creating content consistently in July 2019, I realize that it could be more of a business. The more content I create, the more money there is to earn, and then it becomes a business in its own right.”
However, Nelly Naijabrandchic was purely profit-driven when it started creating content in 2019. “I started monetizing my knowledge as early as 2019, and I made a few million here and there. But I had this belief to get better. I started looking for better ways to add more value, and it has impacted my income. On average, I earn up to $50,000-$100,000”.
In terms of income, how would you describe your growth as a creator?
In terms of income, Salem King said he has gone from giving free classes to earning and even employing. He said, “The first time I had to take a course, I was afraid of charging. I did not charge because I wanted to validate my ideas. When I saw that it had an impact on people, I had the idea of billing, and since then I’ve been billing for classes, courses, consultations, partnerships and incremental growth. Over time, I’ve employed writers and videographers because creating content consistently sometimes becomes too much to handle on my own.
Tayo Aina also mentioned: “For me, I wasn’t making that much money. My first paycheck wasn’t even up to $50 and from where I am it’s been rewarding. It’s not just a question of money, but also of access to people and places previously inaccessible. Revenue growth has been good. Besides YouTube, I recently started a course on Selar which is doing well.
According Mitchell Chibunduthe brain behind designerbabe.co, its reliance on pricing on the value of its products has led to positive growth. She says, “When I wrote my first e-book, I had no intention of selling it because I was anxious and wasn’t sure people would want to pay for it. Confidence helped me set a price and venture into selling other digital products, I’ve taken courses, and there’s more to come.
At the beginning of your career as a creator, you are the only one working on your brand, but as you progress in your career, it is necessary to have a team or outsource the work. This now makes you an employer of labour. What does this experience look like?
Tayo Aina said “I needed to scale up the production process, and the only way to do that is to hire more capable people. Then it started to become less just me and more of a company. I hired a editor, I explained my workflow to him and noticed that within a year my income had doubled, my production also doubled, from there I continued to hire more people to help push the brand to a much desired position”.
Nelly Naijabrandchic added, “As the brand expands, you continue to hire more skilled hands, especially when you want more customers to get on board with what you do. You have to make sure you hire the right hands and don’t drop the ball nowhere while focusing on what you are good at I currently have 15 employees working with me full time and part time.
There has been an increase in the digital and ancillary media industry. E-commerce platforms like Selar and Africreator are designed to help creators make money selling digital products and services. As a result, creators can focus on creating unique niche content that meets the interests of their audience. With over a billion people in Africa, this shows that there is a huge market for creator platforms. Shopify, Amazon, Teachable, and Udemy all exist and make money in this same industry. The same can be said for platforms like Selar that are ready to help African creators monetize their knowledge through digital products and memberships.
According to Mr. Kendyson, “With Selar, we want to enable everyone to easily monetize their knowledge through digital products and enable cross-border trade in Africa and the rest of the world. Over the past two years, we’ve paid out over $4 million to African creators selling digital products on our platform.
“Besides revenue, another strength for us has been seeing that most of the creators using our platform are labor employers, and that’s how much today’s creators They end up hiring for digital and non-digital skills, making job creation and revenue growth evident as more African creators create more exportable content.