Jump start your creative business

Images of 3 women.

A study published by Adobe last year reported more than 165 million creators joined the global creator economy between 2020 and 2022 — one in four people are contributing to online spaces — 17 percent of creators are business owners, while 39 percent aspire to become a business owner one day.

Apply for the Elevate Creatives Fund: $100K for creators

Clearly digital content creators are one of the fastest growing segments of independent small businesses. However, creators are not always natural business owners. We sat down with three jury members of the Elevate Creatives Fund — a joint venture between Shorty Awards and Wave to boost creative entrepreneurship, to discuss how creators can better navigate the transition into business ownership.

“We're going to be giving away $100,000. The five recipients will also receive a complimentary coaching from Wave’s in-house financial advisors.” says Kerry Reynolds, VP Marketing at Wave, “All this is about financial literacy and enabling the creator economy to survive and thrive.”

If you are a creator, independent creative, freelancer or owns a small creative business based in US/Canada, apply for the fund between now and September 15, 2023. The recipients will be announced in November. See details and apply here.

Elevate Creatives Fund.

The challenge of being solopreneurs is that time is the most precious commodity, and running a business takes time away from the work they are passionate about. Goldie Chan, a successful creator and founder of Warm Robots says, “I think the one thing that we learn, and when I talk to these different small businesses and creators that we work with, is that there's never enough time to do the financials and the things on the backend.”

That’s why companies like Clara and Wave are trying to address these challenges through technology that enables pay transparency, streamlines money management and other initiatives to build the infrastructure and support system for creators.

Christen Nino De Guzman, founder and CEO of Clara for Creators shared her advice: “I think it's just having this lens of being a business owner and really setting yourself up for success in taking this into, creating a lucrative income stream for yourself and helping you get to where you want to go. And I think you really do have to kind of think like a business.”

The full conversation about what’s ahead in the creator economy and how creators and independent creatives can scale their small business is available on Shorty Awards’ podcast It’s No Fluke — listen and subscribe here.

The Shorty Awards celebrate excellence in digital storytelling through two annual awards programs: the 8th Annual Shorty Impact Awards is accepting entries through September 7th and the 16th Annual Shorty Awards will be open for entries on October 30th, 2023.

This Adobe MAX 2023 post is sponsored by Shorty Awards.