The number of Australian online creators has grown rapidly since the COVID pandemic, and they are posting more regularly and earning more money than their international peers, according to a new study.
The Adobe Future of Creativity: Creators in the Creator Economy study surveyed 9,000 online creators across nine countries, including Australia.
It defines a creator as someone who has “participated in creative activities and posted, shared or promoted their work from these activities online at least monthly with the goal of growing their social presence”.
The creator economy is the economy which is “empowering people who are monetising their content, goods and services online by leverage their own creativity, talents and passions”.
The study found there has been an increase of 165 million online creators in the last two years, equating to a growth of 119 per cent.
In Australia, the creator economy has increased by 3 million new creators, a jump of 48 per cent since the onset of the pandemic.
The study found that in Australia there are now 6 million people defined as being online creators – nearly one in four people in the entire country.
Of these creators, 80 per cent of them post daily on social media, significantly higher than many other countries.
In South Korea this figure is 47 percent, in France and Japan it is 58 per cent while in the United Kingdom 65 per cent of creators post daily.
For those who are posting to earn money, such as business owners and influencers, posting daily boosts positivity, the study found.
Creators in Australia also earn more than their global counterparts. Creators earn around $109 per hour, according to the study, above the global average of $88 per hour. This equates to a $177,375 annual salary if done full-time.
The study also found that online creation and social media can have a significant positive impact on individuals’ mental health and wellbeing.
More than a quarter of Australian influencers said that using social media or creating online is more important to their mental health than exercising, listening to music and going outside in nature.
In Australia, 67 per cent of the surveyed online creators believe regular social media posting is tied to a more positive mood.
Adobe Creative Cloud chief product officer Scott Belsky said it’s much easier for anyone to be an online creator, and many have turned to this avenue due to the pandemic.
“The unprecedented growth of the creator economy provides a platform for everyone to be a creator,” Belsky said.
“Individuals, solopreneurs, small business owners and content creators can now express themselves and explore creative and artistic pursuits in new ways.
“Increasingly, creators from all walks of life are turning their creative inspirations and passions into new careers and businesses supported by Adobe’s creative tools.”
Creating online content is not yet a main job for most of these people yet. In Australia 49 per cent of those surveyed are employed full time in a separate job, while 20 per cent are employed part time.
And while online creators are typically thought of as influencers, less than 20 per cent of those surveyed are actually influencers, while many aspire to be one day.
These new online creators are also sometimes using their powers for good, with nearly 94 per cent of Australian creators and 95 per cent of creators globally taking action to advance or support causes that are important to them.
These causes include food and housing security, social justice and climate change.
The study involved a 15-minute survey with online content creators in nine countries in May this year. Those surveyed included adults aged over 18 who participate in creative activities and post, share or promote their work from these activities online, and are dedicated to creating social content at least monthly with the goal of growing their social presence.