The Creator Economy has firmly sunk its teeth into our digital experience—and it’s not going anywhere. When the internet came into play, media began to decentralize and traditional channels loosened their grip. At this point, influencer marketing is the new normal.
A shift has occurred, though.
With creators joining platforms at an exponential rate, they have more control than ever. In enters the creator economy. It’s like the influencer realm, but leveled-up.
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Despite the creator economy’s strong impact on the marketing world, healthcare is lagging behind in understanding the potential of creators and how to leverage them to grow their brand.
What is the Creator Economy?
The creator economy is the 50+ million independent content creators like social media influencers, bloggers, and videographers—as well as the software and finance tools designed to help them with growth and monetization.Source: SignalFire
YouTube, Instagram, and Facebook creators got it all started. Then, TikTok’s algorithm came into the picture—blasting the Creator Economy into overdrive.
Every-day people are the creators now, making content on highly-specific topics like chemists covering cosmetic science or OBGYN nurses educating new moms.
With 34 million new creators in the US alone from 2020-2022 covering more niches than ever, there’s endless new chances to reach consumers. The TikTok effect is in full-swing.
Gen Z Tiktoks their questions or how-tos more than they Google. And before the mammoth that is TikTok, we were already getting used to learning things from creators we trust.
“In January 2023, TikTok reached 850 million global users, though 40% of TikTok users aren’t on Facebook, and 63% aren’t on Twitter.”Source: Hubspot
These users aren’t solely limited to Gen Z, either (see: The Time for Older TikTok Influencers Has Arrived).
Meanwhile, other platforms are racing to keep up, with YouTube integrating its Shorts feature and Instagram pushing Reels heavily. This supports creators with even more ways to monetize content, incentivizing them to continue creating.
The Creator Economy’s rapid growth has enabled brands to scale their reach quickly and effectively. It’s also helped marketers find niche audiences that fit brand needs. With all the overwhelming information online, consumers value when a real person is behind the recommendation.
What is Creator Marketing?
Creator Marketing is honing the power of the creator economy for your own brand. Tapping into creator content unlocks never-ending ways to not only connect with your existing audience, but reach new audiences who also relate to your brand.
Subsets of healthcare like telehealth and remote monitoring are rising in unprecedented amounts. Telehealth in particular is used 38 times more compared to pre-pandemic baselines.
For the most part, healthcare companies remain on the edge of creator marketing, with those in the digital space like telehealth and blockchain companies leading the way.
Why Healthcare Brands should tap into the Creator Economy
Every healthcare brand can benefit from creator marketing. The creator economy is filled with talented, prolific creators—who already know how to connect with their audience. Here are a few reasons you should dive in.
1. Creator Marketing has untapped potential in Healthcare
Creator Marketing may resemble influencer marketing, but it’s an advanced version.
The creator economy has a far vaster array of options than your old standard of influencers mostly made up of vloggers, fashion/beauty influencers, or comedians. Don’t get me wrong, these (often larger) influencers also have their value.
We’re just way past the point where the size of an influencer’s audience determines their value.
Forbes deems this a paradigm shift from the “Attention Economy” to the Creator Economy.
We now have chemists, dermatologists, botanists, therapists, and every-day people creating content that reaches hundreds of thousands of viewers who actually care.
It’s not just about fame anymore, it’s about talent. Innovative creators strike a chord with niche audiences by creating killer content that stands out from the crowd.
See a user post about a positive experience at your clinic? Or perhaps your wellness product has them raving? Even ordinary users who feel passionate about your brand can be activated. With 46% of social media users making income last year through social commerce, it’s a brand new world.
2. Diversified Content Creation
Diversifying your content is the best way to reach a wider audience.
Ever meet someone with similar interests, get to know them, and come to learn they consume vastly different content from you? People can have parallel interests but different ways of learning or getting updated on said interests.
There’s sponsored content, videos, podcasts, stories, streaming, and other types of digital media on various platforms that creators can share with their audience.
Harnessing the power of the creator economy means small healthcare brands (or just those new to the digital space) can diversify their content and start early. By casting a wide net for creators from different mediums and on-brand niches, your brand can produce relevant content for diverse audiences.
3. Creating Quality Content Quickly
There’s a word healthcare marketers dread and live in fear of. One that other marketers don’t think about all that much. A word we’re intimately familiar with at T3E.
HIPAA keeps our patients protected and, understandably, holds healthcare brands to a higher standard when it comes to advertising. There’s a layer of patient protection that must be considered.
On the creative front, compliance can turn healthcare ads into a hodgepodge of stock images. Not ideal for connecting with the consumer—especially with something as intimate as healthcare.
Healthcare content creators cultivate that relationship with their audience constantly. They lend credibility by putting a face and a real person’s story to the brand. You still need to follow regulatory standards, but putting true human experience behind your brand can make all the difference.
More than that, compliance makes creating content take long. But you can activate 100 micro-influencers and get various pieces of content promoting your brand from each within a few of months. And then do it again.
4. Educating Consumers Cohesively
The creator economy cannot be escaped, it’s threaded through how consumers entertain, educate, and explore creativity every day.
But we don’t need to be scared of it, just embrace it. Let’s meet consumers where they’re at.
In healthcare marketing, educating the consumer can be the biggest challenge.
Let’s say you have 3 dentists in your dental clinics. None are interested in being on camera. Dr. A is shy. Dr. B doesn’t know how to dumb things down. Dr. C feels it cuts too much into his time with his 3 kids.
Not every expert in your business will be a natural educator, charismatic on camera, or even interested in creating educational content. Like in the dental clinic scenario, maybe none will be.
But the expert content creators online of every niche do have that it factor. They know how to engage their audience, and usually do it because they genuinely care about educating the masses with their expertise.
These creators offer healthcare brands the opportunity to educate consumers effectively, engage new audiences with their brand, and sleep easy when the in-house experts don’t feel up to it.
Where should you start?
Facebook, TikTok and Instagram have creators galore. And short-form content creators are a great start.
“But marketers shouldn’t sleep on YouTube. More than half of consumers plan on spending serious time on the platform, but only 27% of marketers are putting money into YouTube creator collaborations.”Source: sproutsocial.com
Develop a good relationship with creators
Never forget that creators hold the power in the creator economy. Many only work with brands that fit their values and, experts especially, often only work with brands whose product they believe in.
Once you find a creator that jives with your brand, nurture that relationship.
Ask creators to cross-post
Many creators cross post. Some expert educators post long-form content on YouTube and post shorter-form nuggets on TikTok. Some TikTok creators cross-post to Instagram reels.
Ask creators to cross-post whenever they’re willing. With algorithmic differences and platform preferences, the same creator could reach fully different audiences in each platform.
Vary your content
Activate patient influencers as well as healthcare experts. And don’t just focus on educational content. Try a few different forms. Find a relatable lover of your product or a patient willing to share their experience.
Once the data comes in, you can see which form led to the most conversions and what resonated with your audience.
The creator economy is quick and trends are ever-changing. So even though data can guide your direction, never stop varying your content.
Ultimately, just dive in! The right help can identify content creators that may enjoy your brand. Reach out to more than you need, identify the compliance guidelines you’ll want them to follow, and take it from there.
Need some help? Connect with us here and T3E can help incorporate creator marketing into your campaign strategy.