Types of Content Creators & How Much They Make

by | Last updated Dec 13, 2023 | Digital Marketing

Content creators craft online material to entertain or educate their following across multiple platforms. As a successful content creator, you can even monetize your content. Here are the most common types of content creators and how much they make.


Blogger

Bloggers write and publish engaging long-form content—like tutorials, how-tos, and industry-specific articles—on platforms like WordPress, Medium, or Wix. Their work often includes conducting competitive analysis and keyword research, in addition to writing the post. Typically, bloggers cover a range of topics and industries. For example, a health and wellness indie blogger might write a fitness think piece, as well as a listicle of interior design tips for improved mental health.

In-house and contracted bloggers, sometimes called ghostwriters, help brands demonstrate thought leadership and achieve other content goals for business blogs. Indie bloggers, on the other hand, can contract their services or develop their own brand—like well-known lifestyle bloggers Camille Styles and Joanna Goddard.

How Much Do Bloggers Make?

A blogger’s salary depends on many factors, like if the position is in-house or freelance. In-house bloggers’ earnings vary based on ads, affiliate marketing, and more. Similarly, how much a freelance blog writer can make depends on client needs and going rates. On average, here’s how much both types of bloggers earn in the United States:

Obviously, contracted bloggers can price their blogging services higher as the quality and speed of their work improves. You may also charge extra to create visual assets for the project. Or you can make money blogging with additional income streams from related services, like:

  • Affiliate marketing
  • Branded merchandise
  • Copyediting
  • Guest blogging or post swaps
  • Hosting workshops
  • Photography
  • Public speaking
  • Vlogging

Brand Ambassador

A brand ambassador is a person who represents a company and promotes its products or services to their own audience—online and offline. Corporate ambassadors act as spokespeople for a business, attempting to convert their followers into repeat customers through events and sponsored campaigns for brand ambassador programs. Popular programs include Lululemon Ambassador Program, Sephora Squad, Xbox Ambassador Program, and more.

To be a successful brand influencer, you need to be authentic. If you wouldn’t use the product or service yourself, your sponsored content is likely to flop without a genuine endorsement. So, start by partnering with brands that you already know and love. They should align with your values and be relevant to your followers.

How Much Do Brand Ambassadors Make?

Brand ambassadors don’t always get compensated monetarily for their collaborations. Sometimes, they get paid through free products or services, discounts, exclusive offers, or a combination of these options. However, for brand ambassadors who do get paid cash, they report earning anywhere from $36,000 to $61,000 a year, though this salary varies widely based on the program and number of posts in a campaign.

Copywriter

A copywriter is a professional who creates engaging short-form and long-form content with the goal of driving sales, generating leads, or enhancing brand awareness. Unlike a blogger who writes only blog posts, copywriters are more versatile, typically specializing in a particular type of writing, such as:

  • Advertising copy: Used to sell products or services to consumers, appearing in print or online ads and TV commercials.
  • Marketing copy: Used to promote a brand, often in the form of email marketing campaigns and website landing pages.
  • Technical copy: Used to explain complex ideas in user manuals, white papers, training materials, and more.

Just like bloggers, copywriters can be full-time employees (agency/in-house) or freelancers—such as Brian Clark of Copyblogger, or Joanna Wiebe of Copyhackers. You can be a Junior or Senior Copywriter based on experience, or you may hold a title like Content Writer, Technical Writer, or Content Strategist, all of which have the same basic duties as a copywriter.

How Much Do Copywriters Make?

Copywriters in the United States earn an average of $68,000 a year, but there are a number of factors that influence a copywriter’s salary, like your level of experience, contacts, and whether you’re freelance or in-house. Here’s a breakdown of salaried vs contracted copywriters’ earnings:

As is the case with bloggers, freelance copywriters should always increase their prices as they add larger clients to their portfolios and hone their craft. Otherwise, both agency and freelancers can create side-hustles from secondary skills—like blogging, graphic design, or social media management—to generate more income.

Graphic Designer

Graphic designers create eye-catching visual designs, illustrations, and animations, including ads, digital spreads, and even cover art for podcasts. Whether in-house or freelance, this type of content creator considers layout, colors, fonts, and other visual elements when making print, electronic, and published media.

Usually, graphic designers choose an area of expertise, such as marketing and ad design, web design, motion graphics and animation, environmental graphic design (EGD), lettering and type, packaging, or even UI and UX design. Among the most popular graphic designers in the world are Stefan Sagmeister, David Carson, and Paula Scher.

How Much Do Graphic Designers Make?

Depending on the graphic designer’s years of experience, a freelance graphic designer can charge $35 hourly or a fixed rate per project, whereas an in-house graphic designer averages about $56,000 as an annual salary. As additional streams of income, graphic designers also turn these skills into profitable gigs:

  • Animation
  • Freelance digital illustration
  • Front-end website development (or WordPress templates)
  • Logo design
  • Printable decor (e.g., prints, stickers, etc.)
  • Vlogging

Influencer

An influencer is someone with a large social media following who uses their relationship with their audience to affect purchasing decisions. Similar to a brand ambassador, influencers leverage influencer marketing and social proof to get their followers to buy a product or service from companies with influencer marketing strategies.

There are four tiers of influencers:

  • Nano influencers: 1,000-10,000 followers
  • Micro influencers: 10,000-50,000 followers
  • Macro influencers: 500,000-1,000,000 followers
  • Mega influencers: 1,000,000+ followers

In addition to the number of followers you have, brands also consider factors like audience engagement, niche, expertise, target market, content quality, and brand fit before deciding to hire you for their campaigns.

And while the terms “influencer” and “brand ambassador” are often used interchangeably, there are some key distinctions between the two roles.

InfluencerBrand Ambassador
Relationship with BrandShort-term, transactionalLong-term, strategic
Level of InvolvementTypically limited to sponsored posts or product placementsMay involve wide range of activities, including attending events, public speaking, and creating content for the brand’s social media channels
Degree of IndependenceMaintain a high degree of independenceMay have less independence, as they are considered representatives of the brand
Role in Brand MarketingHelp to increase brand awareness and drive salesHelp to build brand loyalty and advocate for the brand

How Much Do Influencers Make?

An influencer’s income depends on their experience and the size of their audience, but on average, this type of digital creator takes home anywhere from $55,000 to $77,000 a year. Their salary can also depend on which social media platforms they use to post their sponsored content and if they belong to any creator funds. Influencers often make extra money through brand partnerships, merchandising, and affiliate marketing.

Photographer

Sometimes called content photographers, these creators help brands and digital marketers develop a visual aesthetic. Common types of content photographers include lifestyle photographers, fashion photographers like Tim Walker, interior design photographers, portrait photographers like Anne Geddes, and more. Photographers can be employed at an agency or self-employed.

As a photographer, of course you’ll be capturing images with technical precision, but there’s plenty of pre-production planning that’s required for this role, too, like researching and developing ideas for shoots, scouting locations, coordinating with models and crew, and preparing camera equipment. Once the shoot wraps, you are probably also responsible for digital editing, retouching images, and delivering assets to your clients.

How Much Do Photographers Make?

Photographer’ salaries will be influenced by whether they work for a photography business or on their own, their niche (real estate, weddings, etc.), and more. Below is the average salary for all types of photographers in the U.S.

To supplement your income, photographers can also charge for services like:

  • Advanced editing (i.e., air-brushing, AI applications, etc.)
  • Drone photography
  • Videography
  • Travel to location
  • Studio rentals

Podcaster

Podcasters are digital storytellers who create audio episodes about news, sports, true crime, and other topics for an audience. The responsibilities of this position will change depending on the format of your show (like if you interview guests) and if you’re an independent podcaster or a corporate podcaster.

  • Independent podcaster: Owns and manages their own podcast with complete creative freedom.
  • Corporate podcaster: Employed by an organization that produces the podcast with limited creative freedom.

In general, because independent podcasters have more control over their show, they’ll often host, edit, produce, promote, and monetize the podcast with little to no assistance, while a corporate podcaster usually has more funding and resources to join a podcast network or delegate some of those tasks so they can focus solely on being a podcast host.

How Much Do Podcasters Make?

The amount of money a podcast host makes can vary significantly depending on audience size, engagement, production quality, monetization strategies, and several other factors. However, a podcaster’s earning potential is often between $17,000 and $44,000 yearly. If you’re looking for ways to make more money with your podcast, you might consider:

Social Media Manager

Social media managers utilize social media marketing strategies to drive public engagement on a brand’s social media platforms (i.e., YouTube, TikTok, LinkedIn, and more).

“Contrary to popular belief, social media managers do more than make posts and write captions. We take the time to research social media trends, monitor competitor activity, get to know the client, and understand why they do what they do,” said Allie Gritt, Hurrdat Marketing’s Social Media Director. “Then, we create a comprehensive social media strategy based on that research to share what sets our client apart from others.”

Beyond strategy and content creation, social media managers are also responsible for community engagement and reputation management by responding promptly to comments, DMs, and brand mentions. This digital content creator type usually has a core understanding of analytics and reporting for key social media metrics, such as engagement rates, follower growth, and website traffic. They might also be in charge of managing influencer partnerships.

Like many types of content creators, this role is available as an in-house or freelance opportunity.

How Much Do Social Media Managers Make?

Depending on if you have an in-house position or if you’re a freelance social media manager, your yearly earnings can look a little different.

Streamer

Streamers are content creators who broadcast themselves doing a hobby or activity in real-time to an audience. Most streamers are video gamers like Ninja, but sports commentators and musical artists are rising in popularity. The top livestreaming platforms include Twitch, YouTube Live, and Kick.com, though many social media platforms now have a live feature for influencers to host “get ready with me” videos and audience Q&As.

To be a successful streamer, you need to have technical proficiency, including a strong understanding streaming platforms, broadcasting software, and video editing tools. You should be familiar with camera angels, lighting, and sound adjustments. You need to be charismatic and feel confident speaking off the cuff to keep viewers’ attention. And most of all, you’ll want to be adaptable and resilient.

How Much Do Streamers Make?

The average salary of a streamer is $56,000, but certain niches, audience sizes, and livestreaming platforms impact this creator’s potential earnings. For example, Twitch streamers get paid based on the number of views per stream, streaming hours, audience engagement, content quality, and other factors. Small streamers can make anywhere from $50 to $1,500 per month, while top-tier streamers on Twitch can make $2.50 per subscriber or up to $200,000 per month. There are several ways you can monetize your stream, including:

  • Ads
  • Branded merchandise
  • Live shopping
  • Paid subscriptions

Videographer

Videographers capture live footage for smaller events like weddings, anniversaries, and festivals, focusing on raw and candid content. They’re also involved in the pre- and post-production of video—from setting up microphones and other needed equipment to editing the footage. Content creation for videographers can look like setting up the shoot or offering behind-the-scenes looks into the finished product. Some of the most successful videographers include Cello Films and Victoria Wall Harris.

A videographer who has a position within a company usually works with a small team, while a freelance videographer is typically solo. As a result, contracted videographers are responsible for the set-up/tear-down of their equipment, as well as gathering, editing, and copying the footage all on their own.

How Much Do Videographers Make?

In-house videographers and freelance videographers average income varies, but breaks down to:

Employed videographers usually earn a base salary, while freelancers often charge clients per project or service rendered. You may consider charging for the following services:

  • Audio engineering (including stabilization and sound mastering)
  • Cinematography
  • Drone videography

Vlogger

A video blogger (or vlogger) creates videos documenting their life experiences and then posts these videos online to connect with an audience. Common videos that vloggers make include unboxings, how-tos, cooking, lifestyle, travel videos, product reviews, and fitness routines. Most vloggers are YouTubers, like the well-known MrBeast and The Endless Adventure. When the videos are not uploaded to vlogger’s social media channels, you can usually find them on their personal websites.

How Much Do Vloggers Make?

The average hourly rate a vlogger charges is around $30, but that changes based on if the vlog is a paid or sponsored video, if it’s featured in ads, contains affiliate links, or if you sell any merchandise.

Not ready to become your own content creator? Hurrdat has experts in content marketing, social media marketing, podcasting, and other services to help your brand stand out from the competition. Contact us today!

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