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  • Writer's pictureNour Boustani


Creators and professionals seldom make any money or enjoy a decent living. The reason for that isn’t a lack of skills or talent, but a lack of a cohesive brand image, reputation, and a profitable business model.

Artists, writers, therapists, musicians, and others spend their entire life mastering their skills but seldom understand how to make money with that skill; they think if they create, money will come.

However, when you ask them when and how, the answer is always “no idea!”

To make money as a creator or as an expert, you must generate demand around your name; people have to fall in love with you, trust in your capability to solve a problem, share a common purpose with you, and want to support your work.

If you notice that most creators and professionals are selfish and create work for themselves, they seldom do market research or find what people will pay money for collecting.

They rarely research industry standards and optimize their work to make it easy for publications and agents to sell their work to the public.

Most people don’t understand your late-night sketches or ambiguous work; they buy work they can understand and relate to from people they trust and admire.

This insight should at least give you an instant shift in mindset that you don’t create for or serve yourself, you make stuff or offer services for the market, and they decide what is worthy or worthless.

The first step to making money as a creator is sticking to a specific topic; it’s frustrating for an audience to understand what problem you solve or create if you behave like a supermarket.

Immature professionals and creators try to cast a vast net of unrelated topics and niches, hoping to catch the most people.

Some think they can impress other creators and people if they mention in their bios that they are artists, designers, musicians, philosophers, fathers, husbands, and teachers.

That’s too much; an audience needs to assign a personality and tag a specific attribute in their mind of who you are and what is it precisely that you offer.

Pick a single topic or a single problem and focus on it at least for a year; once you have it figured out, you can talk about it from different angles and perspectives and make tens of products to solve that specific problem.

The second step of making money with your skill is to convert your expertise into a how-to product or service.

Most immature creators or experts don’t have the experience or skills to create powerful work, and by immature, I mean you can’t sell your work at a high price point regardless of how good you think you are.

Those creators have big egos and don’t make their work or services marketable, so it’s challenging for an agent or a publisher to sell their work.

The customer finds no need or urgency to pick up their wallet and make a transaction with that professional.

If you are in that position, convert your knowledge and skills into an educational product and sell it as a digital course.

A student can leverage this content as a source of information to improve their skills; therefore, there is a reason to spend money buying it.

It also widens the distribution of your brand and builds social proof and demand around your name.

The best strategy is to teach three to four paid short courses on platforms such as Udemy and Skillshare focusing on a single topic for each course, and offer a single free mini-course as a promotion to get more students into your pipeline.

These courses are on-demand and can help you with the bills so you can focus your effort on high-income activities.

Once you develop a single source of income and bring consistent revenue, you can split your effort into two related activities.

The first is creating high-end or customized offers. You can offer one-on-one coaching, consulting, personal training, portrait painting, or ghostwriting in your scenario.

And second, is to create and promote original work; curating other people’s work or posting lazy and incomplete work won’t get you far because it’s immature and treated as a commodity.

Publishers and agents got plenty of commodity writers or artists that pitch them the same unfinished stuff repeatedly.

They look for polished and professional work they can leverage to expand their collection of products or services and make money.

Clients also seek well-established creators and experts for expensive services because they trust they can deliver results.

When you blog or create YouTube videos, your job is to create a brand that brings you opportunities; you don’t sell your products. Instead, you sell your ideas, prestige, attitude, and approach to solving a problem.

This strategy will help you build an audience around a specific problem that trusts you and knows that you are not pushing them to buy a product or a service; it positions you as the generous and confident market expert.

We call it goodwill marketing, which drives much better results than advertising.

Once you build an audience, you reach out to publishers, agents, or PR managers, or they might reach out to you, and these people will help you get it to the next level with your work.

You shouldn’t look at your skills in a single dimension; instead, look at them as a different level in which you can offer other products and services.

Create a combination of free and paid products and content that diversify your income, expand your reputation and increase your opportunities.

Before I end this article, I want to leave you with three key points:

1. Create for the market, not for yourself; once you build the reputation, you can afford to create for your pleasure.

2. Create a backend source of income and support it with front-end content marketing and brand authority.

3. Build a collection of products and a loyal audience, then leverage those assets to attract publishers, agents, and PR managers.

Please share this article with someone who needs it if you find it valuable.

I don’t ask you to buy my course, my book, schedule a strategy call, or join my webinar.

Kindly help me spread the message.

I would also love to hear about your experience promoting your work and making money as a creator or professional. I value your insights!

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