Content creator. Lucrative career. Do these two ideas sound like they’re in conflict? 

On one hand, it’s never been so easy to sell your creative work to the world. The digital revolution has launched the best opportunities for scaling your career and income since the printing press. On the other hand, why does it seem so complicated to get started? If it was really easy to build a successful and profitable career as a content creator, wouldn’t everyone do it?

The answer: sort of. There are a lot of content creator opportunities out there. And there are plenty of platforms willing to help you along your journey. All you need to do is know how to find them.

Produce Written Content

The idea is simple: Put a pen to the pad (or, you know, your fingers to the keyboard). But there are so many digital opportunities for written content—freelancing, building blogs, ebooks, whitepapers, case studies—that it can be difficult to know where to start. Here are some of the most popular options for written content creators online.

Starting Your Own Blog

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Starting your own blog can help you build an audience and an income. 

A successful blog might be one of the best gigs on the planet. You can sip coffee and work from home in your pajamas. And there’s certainly a market for it—every month, about 20 billion pages get read across the Internet.

Building your own blog might require an initial investment of time as you learn the ropes. You’ll also have to learn what constitutes a high-quality blog post and the kind of content people want to read and share. But as you get the hang of it and attract an audience, you’ll probably find it’s one of the best digital content creator jobs there is.

Writing Website Content (Freelance or In-House)

When someone builds a website from scratch, they often fill it with “Lorem ipsum dolor sit” placeholder content for the time being. But, great websites need great words. And if you’re thinking about becoming a content creator, there’s no more immediate way to do it than to start providing those words.

There are two paths here. You can work freelance on a site like Upwork for some immediate short-term gigs or by pitching clients you want to work with. Or you can look for in-house website content specialist roles. Either way, it can be your words gracing the front pages of popular websites.

Creating Ebooks, White Papers, Case Studies, and More

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There’s no shortage of types of written content you can create. 

Words are more valuable than ever. They’re so valuable, in fact, that they aren’t limited to blogs and websites. Companies need ebooks to attract readers. They need white papers to share dense information. They need case studies to help make sales. They need newsletters to capture new audiences.

Most of all, they need someone to write them. 

You can also create this content for your own web presence. These resources are particularly helpful if you want to be seen as a thought leader in a specific subject.

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Build Your Own YouTube Channel

Most people still agree that “content is king.” But writing your content down isn’t the only way to build value for your audience. You can turn it into helpful videos and attract a massive audience on YouTube.

If you can avoid camera shyness, you can take any lessons you have and immediately share them with a limitless audience. Like any other creative type, a video content creator simply needs to know what their audience is looking for. Do you have a passion for cooking and meal prep? A knack for offering relationship advice? Countless lessons on shaping up at the gym? 

Chances are, those experiences can be turned into a YouTube channel.

Producing How-To Videos

man with camera rig
Tech reviewer Marques Brownlee is one of the most successful YouTubers on the planet.

These days, when something goes wrong, we’ll tell someone “just YouTube it.” That will solve everything. What we forget is that there is an entire army of video content creator specialists who have made this possible. Chances are, you have something to offer, too. Consider these popular how-to categories:

  • DIY home projects
  • Fitness
  • Cooking and meal prep
  • Tech support
  • Household appliance guides
  • Car repairs
  • Yoga

You don’t have to be an expert to start creating. Sometimes, you can set about learning the exact question you have and then turn your insights into a fresh how-to video.

Running Your Own Live Shows

Live shows have the same appeal as YouTube videos, but with more immediacy. They’re particularly great if you have advice-centric content. Personal finance, relationships, professional advice—they all make for great Q&A live shows that will draw attention to the other content you create.

Create Content on Facebook and Instagram

You don’t have to be exclusive to any platform as a content creator. But there are benefits to developing your skills as a Facebook content creator or even exclusively as an Instagram content creator. 

These platforms have built-in audiences that make it easy for your readers and viewers to share what you produce. 

Getting Started on Facebook Creator Studio

Remember: these platforms want you to be a digital content creator. Facebook encourages people to build an audience with Facebook Creator Studio. There you can upload content, run analytics, engage with your audience, and access assets like publicly available sound files to enhance your content.

Running a Facebook Live

82% of people prefer live videos to reading social posts. Facebook Live is a great way to get started with a live webinar, Q&A session, or any customer/creator interaction you want to use to boost your profile.

Starting a Dedicated Instagram Account

You’ve probably seen that there are Instagram accounts for nearly every type of topic—from dog photos to inspirational quotes. If there’s a subject you’re passionate about, start a dedicated Instagram account to share relevant images, videos, advice, and more. What starts out as a fun hobby could transform you into a successful (and potentially highly paid) Instagram influencer when relevant brands partner with you on content.  

Build Your Own Podcast

podcasting man
Podcasts are great for listeners who want to consume content on the go. 

Not everyone has time to sit down to read or watch your content. That might be why podcasts are on the rise in our go-go-go world, with 20% of all people listening to them at least weekly.

Your podcast doesn’t have to be polished right away. What is a content creator, after all, except someone who communicates ideas to the world? You barely need more than a microphone to do that. There is more work to do—learning how sponsorship works, how to get your podcasts on more platforms, etc.—but you can pick that up as you go. The most important thing is building your audience.

Conducting Interviews With Experts

One of the best ways to boost the profile of a young podcast is to have an established expert come on your show for a guest appearance. The more relevant their expertise is to your chosen podcast topic, the better.

One of the benefits of many content creator jobs is that you’ll encounter amazing people as you work. As a podcaster, you can reach out to authors and speakers who want to promote something to your audience. In exchange, your audience gets plenty of new content—and you have a new connection.

Become a Digital Content Creator on TikTok

If you want to fast-forward your content creation career, there may be no better choice than TikTok. Yes, having a lot of followers will boost your profile on TikTok. But the unique algorithms make TikTok content creation uniquely suited for beginners.

TikTok judges content on how well it performs with its audience. The more likes, engagements, and comments you get, the more likely it is that your video will go viral. And that represents an opportunity to discover a new audience.

Partnering With Brands

TikTok isn’t shy about sharing its creator marketplace with brands who want to promote their content. They want advertisers to reach out to people like you for potential partnerships.

The question is: What kinds of creators tend to succeed? According to Statista, there’s a heavy slant toward entertainment, dance, and pranks. But there’s also plenty of room for content that does well on any platform: fashion, fitness, cooking, home renovation, life hacks, pets, and skincare.

As a content creator, it would be a mistake if you dismissed TikTok. There’s already plenty of interesting content on the platform, and it could be the ideal way for you to reach an entirely new audience.

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Written by:

Dan Kenitz