Gig workforce’s ‘creator economy’ numbers 7.1 million and is expected to grow

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November 22, 2021

A study from MBO Partners found that 7.1 million Americans have earned money in the past year as part of the “creator economy.” Another 3.2 million are planning to become content creators over the next two years.

Overall, the broader independent workforce grew 34% to more than 51 million in 2021. MBO Partners noted the growth of the creator economy mirrors this trend.

“The creator economy validates the trend that more and more workers are realizing the freedom and wellbeing that comes from taking career control into their own hands,” MBO Partners CEO Miles Everson said.

“Savvy organizations and politicians must realize the workforce of the future will be fueled by independent professional solo-entrepreneurs, choosing to design careers on their own terms,” Everson continued. “Creators are just one example of how the American workforce is changing at a rapid pace.”

CB Insights defines the creator economy, in part, as business “built by independent creators, from vloggers to influencers to writers, to monetize themselves, their skills or their creations.”

MBO Partners’ report also found that while 7.1 million are earning income in the creator economy, 4.4 million are part of the segment but have not yet earned income.

It also found 75% of creators identify as members of Gen Z or millennials. Creators also tend to be slightly more diverse with 19% identifying as Black compared to just 12% of the overall American population.

A majority of creators also have traditional jobs. The report found 46% of independent contractor creators also have full-time jobs and 13% have part-time jobs. The majority, 63%, report working part-time as content creators, while 37% of income-earning digital content creators are doing it full-time.

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