Are You a Creator or an Entrepreneur?

Text from my newsletter of 21st March.

If you prefer to listen:

I was prompted by a recent newsletter issue from Ellen Donnelly to ask myself whether I am a creator or an entrepreneur.

I had come to think of myself as a creator because I write these newsletters each week, and I create blog posts. And I work on my own.

But that’s not all, or only, what I am.

If you’re an entrepreneur you do create, as part of promoting your business and finding new customers.

Entrepreneurs also hustle and look for complementary revenue streams to provide resilience to their businesses.

They are responsible for marketing, sales, product development, support systems and meeting the needs of their customers.

And they base their businesses on a product or service that solves a problem they’ve identified.

An entrepreneur can also be a creator, but is a creator an entrepreneur?

In previous newsletter editions I’ve talked about creator platforms like Patreon, Substack, and Tik Tok.

These platforms give creators a home where they can practice their craft without dealing with the mechanics of operating a business.

They don’t have to do marketing, SEO, or take care of the technology stack.

A creator’s business is based on their craft and creating content in support of it.

They have social media accounts, where they publish their content, and they attract followers, or fans, hopefully in large numbers.

Because of those follower or fan numbers, the social platforms amplify their work.

But they don’t get involved in product development or creating support systems.

So how would I distinguish between creators and entrepreneurs?

Generalisations, for sure, but I think of it like this:

Creators:

  • Focus primarily on their craft and creating content to promote it
  • Base their branding and business on themselves or their creations
  • Rely on potential customers contacting them to commission work
  • Do not develop products, or set up support systems

Entrepreneurs:

  • Focus primarily on their audience or customers
  • Base their branding and business on a product or service
  • Look after product development, support systems and more
  • Proactively look for new business or revenue opportunities

An entrepreneur can be a creator, but a creator is not an entrepreneur.

Both creators and entrepreneurs lead stressful lives, but there’s growing evidence that the burnout creators experience from the pressure of being the brand of their business, can be intense.

The first article I’ve linked to below goes into this in detail.

This week’s links

In addition to the article on the danger of basing your business on your personal brand, I’ve covered how to succeed in the creator game, and how Instagram’s new creator tags enable publishers to credit the creators of the graphics or videos they use.

I’ve also linked to 7 ways to promote yourself on social media without bragging.

Maintaining a personal brand may harm your business

This is a long read, in which Ellen Donnelly discusses the distinction between branding and building a business based on a product or service, and branding and building a business based on you.

How maintaining a personal brand may harm your business

How to succeed in the creator game

John Bardos uses a game analogy to break down the difference between the employee game and the creator game, and sets out clearly what it takes to succeed at the creator game.

He also gives examples of unexpected ways creators can generate different sources of income:

How to succeed in the creator game

Instagram launches updated creator tags

Andrew Hutchinson explains Instagram’s updated creator tags that enable publishers to credit the people who do the work behind the scenes, to create the graphics and videos:

Instagram launches updated creator tags

7 ways to promote yourself without bragging

Adaira Landry discusses 7 ways to promote yourself on social media in ways that take people with you, instead of turning them off:

7 ways to promote yourself without bragging

———-

Just so you know: this email may contain affiliate links. If you click one of them, and make a purchase, I may receive a small commission as a ‘thank you’ from the product or service provider. I only link to products or services that I use, or have used, and am proud to be associated with. There is no additional cost to you.

Cool (and smart) people and businesses to follow

Smart, current and insightful tips from:

Women Home Business

Small Business Majority

Useful resources

Online courses on just about anything

Home Business Resources

Fun flashback

Coldplay have been a favourite band of mine for nearly 20 years. Here they are performing In My Place at Live 8 in London’s Hyde Park on the 2nd July, 2005.

Join us

Struggling to grow your business?

Every week, I do deep-dive research into the mass of information on how to start and grow a successful small, indie or one-person business.

Join us, and you will be among the first to receive the best resources I find each week – in your inbox, every Monday:

Fire up your business growth – get 4 top tips a week:

.

Cheers,

Martin Malden

Share the love: