“Collaboration Opportunity!” “Partner with Us” “We love what you are doing” if you are a creator you have probably heard these words before or if you’re an aspiring creator maybe it is something you are looking forward to hearing.
When my husband and I first started growing his social media channels a couple of years ago, we were so excited to get these messages! You think: “wow I can’t believe someone wants to work with me!”
Yes it is exciting but unfortunately it is also a way that many creators can get taken advantage of. In this post, I wanted to pull back the curtains on some of the common scams or things that creators should watch out for when they start developing an audience.
I hope this can serve as a way to avoid mistakes that we made when first getting started with our brand and seeing success with our channels.
1. Not getting properly compensated for your work: use websites like SocialBlueBook to help determine what your cost per post should be, it is worth something.
2. Agencies/Galleries: sometimes agencies can be helpful in your growth but other times they make a lot of claims which are not measurable or hard to track transparently. These days having an agent or being represented by a gallery is not necessary! There are so many individuals that decide to run everything themselves and actually you avoid a lot of fees that way.
3. Using your content without giving a % of revenue: content is king and if you are creating good content that is very valuable to many people. There are tons of art featuring pages on places like Facebook and YouTube that make hundreds of thousands if not MILLIONS of dollars just off of sharing artist's and creator's videos and putting ads on them. Many creators don't know or ask if their content is being monetized...sure these pages can offer good exposure but you should know that you are entitled to a percentage of any revenue generated using your content.
4. Be wary of any deal that promises a ton of money: usually it’s not; anything you are building will take a lot of hard work and nothing is as easy as it seems unfortunately. If you are interested in any deal like this, be sure to talk to other people that they’ve worked with in the past and see their experience before agreeing or signing anything.
5. Hackers: I can’t believe it but this is something we never really considered until about 1 year ago. We now have all our accounts and emails heavily protected and have 2 factor authentication on EVERYTHING. It can be annoying, but honestly it is so important to protect what you have worked hard to create.
Extra pointers for creators that we learned the hard way:
-Always have a contract in place that protects you and your business/customer list!! If you are working with anyone you need to be sure about this. Your customer list is everything and if you don't have one yet, you should start working to develop one off of social media to have as a back up. You always want to maintain a communication with your customer and want to be very careful who you share this information with.
-Never sign a contract for multiple years without first doing a trial of working with the company and seeing if this is a brand you’re happy working with long term. A lot of companies will want to lock you in and use a lot of fluffy language to make deals sound better than they are. Be sure that you know who you are working with and if they are a legitimate business they will be happy to offer a trial run before agreeing to anything long term.
-Any deal that you are giving someone 50% or more of any aspect of your brand to, you better really, really trust that person. Even having a business with my husband in which we work with a 50-50 model where we share everything, it is hard to agree on everything. There needs to be a clear distinction who is doing what work and expectations are everything! Finding business partners can be a real struggle, but if you have clear expectations and a solid contract that will offer you some peace of mind. Pay the extra money to a lawyer to have a solid legal contract written, it will be the best money you ever spent.
I hope this could be helpful for you! If you prefer to watch these as videos here is a link to my youtube channel: https://www.youtube.com/itsdreak
Have you experienced any of these before? If you have any to add, comment down below!