The creator economy, where individuals post and monetize diverse content, is among the fastest-growing business segments in the world. A joint report by Neoreach and Influencer Marketing Hub estimated the creator economy’s global market size to be $104.2 billion in 2021. It’s expected to hit the trillion-dollar mark by 2023.
Moreover, in 2021, venture capitalists invested up to $1.3 billion in the creator-entertainment segment—a three-fold rise from 2020. Instagram, YouTube, and Twitch, in particular, have been significantly responsible for this growth. For one, they empowered creators with the tools necessary to create riveting content.
Lucrative business models thus emerged with high audience engagement and brand sponsorships at their core. Consequently, over 43% of creators on these platforms earn, on average, $50,000 yearly.
Projections vs. Reality – How They Differ
The above figures paint a rosy picture of online success and fame. But in reality, it’s a different story altogether. Garnering attention and generating income on legacy social media platforms is an arduous task. There’s stiff competition and much noise, with over fifty million creators globally. Moreover, existing business models and algorithms promote paid content irrespective of quality, which hampers the level playing field.
The centralized nature of legacy social media and content-creation platforms is another significant problem. It’s, in fact, the root of most other issues. Meta, Twitter, and their likes store content on big servers they control entirely. They even own the data posted on their platforms, monetize them for huge profits, and mostly deprive the actual creators.
YouTube, for instance, generated $30 billion from ads in 2021. But this came with foundational risks like de-platforming and lack of transparency. The platform recently banned a leading Web3 podcast, Bankless, without prior notice or justification. This highlights the control and authority centralized entities currently have over creators and their creations.
However, innovators are working to remedy these concerns by developing user-centric and community-oriented business models. It’s crucial, after all, to reinstate creators in the driver’s seat because it’s ultimately their hard work that generates value. NFTs and DAOs, among other blockchain-powered solutions, prove especially helpful.
Decentralization Empowers Creators
The emergence of blockchain technology has allowed creators to reduce their dependence on legacy, centralized creator-economy platforms, and brands. They can now become founders, building and launching innovative businesses with decentralized toolkits.
NFTs, for instance, represent tangible and digital assets like artworks, music tracks, videos, etc., on the blockchain. This enhances the value of these creations by enabling peer-to-peer sales and auctions. That is to say, the creator benefits directly and immediately by monetizing their work. Consumers have similar opportunities, in fact, and can monetize their consumption patterns. Web3 thus becomes a domain for consumer-creators, breaking away from traditional top-down hierarchies.
Both creators and consumers generate consistent income from primary and secondary NFT sales. This paves the way for equitable and circular economies with optimal incentives for every stakeholder. Moreover, there’s scope for early adopters to gain steep, almost unimaginable premiums. It’s a win-win situation for everyone: creators, collectors, fans, traders, promoters, and investors.
Overall, decentralized creator economies and social platforms introduce novel revenue streams for creators and consumers. They also unlock the full potential of NFTs, enabling disruptive use-cases and fostering sustainable growth. So much so that even YouTube plans to integrate NFTs. But despite everything, there’s one problem.
The NFT market is highly fragmented and siloed, currently, which hampers the user experience and adoption. This is particularly relevant to creator economies since interoperability is key to the domain’s long-term success. Decentralized social platforms must boost collaborations across platforms, enabling creative enterprises to thrive. Because, after all, creation presumes inspiration, which in turn comes from interaction.
Interchain NFTs Redefine Creator Economies, Expand Horizons
For NFTs to facilitate new sovereign economies, users must have complete autonomy over their ownership and utility. Essentially, these digital properties should be indistinguishable from real-world properties. Now, imagine owning a pair of fabulous sunglasses that can only be worn at home. Similar is the case today with digital properties.
Interchain NFTs can help solve this by expanding the use-cases and applications beyond a single blockchain. The power of these NFTs stems from the fact that they are not bound by any particular blockchain. Instead, they are tradable across blockchains, which gives them immense flexibility. This is a game-changer for the creator economy as it widens the potential market size for each NFT-based creator project.
Further, interoperable NFTs can help fractionalize physical or digital asset ownership across metaverses. Creators thus have novel opportunities for raising funds, while fans can signal support through treasurer ships.
AssetMantle’s MantlePlace is a prominent example of how decentralized creator economies can transform the industry using interchain NFTs. It provides creators the privilege of on-chain identity while supporting the interoperability of NFTs across the vast network of IBC-enabled chains. The platform uses the interNFT standardization—a community-led initiative backed by Incterchain Foundation and IXO—to standardize NFT metadata structuring for interoperable digital assets.
Interchain capabilities foster a paradigm shift for brand awareness and content distribution, besides taking creator NFTs to the masses. Sooner or later, they will enable the rise of a new creator class, unencumbered by legacy intermediaries. They will have the tools to cross-pollinate their creativity and reach new markets.
With innovative platforms like AssetMantle at the helm, the very nature of content creation, consumption and ownership will undergo a massive reorientation. And finally, creator-consumers can build, own, and monetize their digital footprint while expanding their creative horizons.
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