The creator economy is a decentralized society where people can learn, teach, and create a better life for themselves.
I made this realization over the past decade.
When I was a child, I didn’t trust the school system (or my parents) to equip me with the knowledge necessary to make the most of my life.
Instead, I consumed content from YouTubers, bloggers, and social media accounts that were teaching about fitness, business, and philosophy.
I bought affordable courses that taught me more than my overpriced college degree.
My college degree got me into a $60K/year job.
My internet studies built me a business that enables me to do anything I want in this life.
Education is only one aspect of the creator economy.
I see it as a self-sufficient Utopia that is the product of human desire and evolution.
I have a person that sells shoes.
I have a person that sells kitchenware.
I have a person that sells blue light glasses.
I have a person that sells apparel.
I have a person that sells coffee and supplements.
I have a person that sells fresh herbs, milk, and meat.
All of which have an underlying philosophy that holds more depth than today’s shallow brands and mega corporations that just want your money.
This thread is a prime example of what I mean:
And, of course, I have plenty of individuals that I can acquire specific knowledge from in relevant fields.
If I want to learn stock or real estate investing, I can acquire that knowledge for a fraction of what it would cost from a degree. And I would get 10x the results because the person teaching it actually has results.
The creator economy is where you:
- Find people with shared goals
- Curate your own community
- Provide value to that community
- Get paid for your contributions
My recommendation is to start with what we’ve learned in previous letters.
Start an education business by pursuing your purpose (because it has minimal startup costs and huge profit margins).
Create an independent income for yourself.
Then, build a business that you really want to build.
My little one-person education business makes around $1.5 million a year.
I am now writing a book, building software, and strategizing the true impact I want to leave on the world. I have the money and resources to do it, but only because I started with what was available to me.
I didn’t fantasize about building a billion-dollar company just to leave me paralyzed with overwhelm and anxiety.
That’s exactly how you make 0 progress.
P.S. This style of business (solving your own problems and selling the solution) is exactly what I help with in Digital Economics.
Solve Your Problems For Profit & Purpose
My entire business journey was selfish.
All I did was build for myself, write to myself, and sell to myself.
When you are the niche, saturation and competition cease to exist.
If you want to profit off of your purpose:
- Identify a problem in your life
- Set a goal to reveal your present purpose
- Experiment with different solutions
- Find what works and create your own
- Talk about your journey in public
- Offer your solution with a price tag on it
Repeating this process has been the guiding light in my life.
Ever since I can remember I’ve always had a project to build.
A project is an organized way for achieving your goal (or purpose).
A few years ago, I struggled with productivity.
It was difficult to focus and I knew that I could be doing more.
That was the problem that I became aware of.
So, I made it my purpose to fix that area of my life.
I watched YouTube videos, purchased supplements, and ordered a few different planners and journals.
I was adamant on solving the problem, so I experimented with every piece of advice I got.
After a few months, I had gotten some incredible results.
So, I sat down to create a sustainable productivity solution that would fit me to perfection (because there was always one minor issue with the other methods I tried).
This is when I designed and launched the digital Power Planner.
I didn’t have many followers at the time, but I loved the thought of making a living from my productivity knowledge. So, I:
- Wrote content on what I knew about productivity
- Grew a following with the proper strategies
- Promoted the digital planner as a free download
- Added educational resources to the free download
People loved it.
So, I took it further and launched a physical version of the planner.
Things are different now, but the entirety of my success is built on solving my own problems and selling the solution.
I solved my career problems by learning web design (so I built a course).
I solved my money problems by succeeding with freelancing (so I built another course).
Then, Modern Mastery was born from me building what I would have wanted for a community and learning platform.
Now, I’m writing a book and building a software that I could sell to my younger self (to help him reach his goals faster).
It’s that simple.
Everyone is an entrepreneur.
Some just get paid for the problems they solve.
The Self-Reliant Career Path (How To Start)
There are almost 7B people on this planet. Someday, I hope, there will be almost 7B companies. — Naval
The future of work is play and everyone will be an entrepreneur.
Everyone will be forced to create, contribute, and deliver value to their community or else their way of survival will dry up.
Artificial intelligence points to this reality.
Automation points to this reality.
Most things on the internet point to this reality.
Even if that does not become that reality for most people, it can for you.
1) Profitable Interests
We start with life direction.
You need a vision, goals, and priority tasks that you can execute on every single day.
This is how you gain experience in this life.
This is how you gain knowledge, skill, and the direction to acquire both that you can pass down to those on the same path.
All burning problems (in your life and others) fall within the eternal markets: Health, wealth, and relationships.
Self-improvement is about solving your own problems in those domains.
Business is about providing a solution to problems in those domains.
- Setting a purposeful goal to improve yourself
- Self-educating and acquiring the skills for your mind, body, and business
- Letting your curiosity guide which methods you choose and create
You will have the experience necessary to help others and profit off of living with purpose.
Curiosity is a crucial touchpoint there.
What makes you unique is your ability to find the combination of knowledge that gets you results.
In business, some may be curious about e-commerce or website flipping.
Others may be curious about personal branding and digital products.
In health, some may be curious about sports and optimal performance.
Others may be curious about bodybuilding and biohacking.
Too often we think that we are doing the same thing as everyone else.
Your story is vastly different.
Everyone has to pursue goals in the same eternal markets. You won’t escape that. But the way you pursue those goals can be unique to you, and that’s what makes your experience profitable.
2) Project To Product
If you don’t know what to sell, sell something you would have wanted on your journey, or something you can’t find but want right now.
When you begin pursuing a goal, the best way to actualize it is to:
- Study the fundamentals to gain clarity
- Start a real-world project so you don’t get trapped in tutorial hell
- Build the project until you discover a problem
- Buy courses, coaching, or research internet content to find the solution
- Apply everything you learn until the project is completed
A “project” doesn’t sound like it applies to all domains of life, but hear me out.
When you start improving your health, you only make progress when you turn it into a measurable personal project.
You go to the gym.
You write down your routine.
You document every single one of your lifts.
If you aren’t seeing progress, you research and find the gaps in your knowledge.
Maybe it’s nutrition holding you back?
Time to track your calorie intake.
Seeing progress in your physique but not in your energy?
Maybe you fall down an esoteric rabbit hole of how beef liver is the most nutrient-dense food on the planet.
So, you experiment with it and note the results.
When you treat every domain of your life as a purpose-oriented project you are required to experiment.
Through self-experimentation you create a unique set of experiences that you can pass down to others.
In marketing, you are selling purpose (purpose = goal = desired outcome).
You are selling the benefits of the lifestyle that come from pursuing that purpose.
In the health space, some people might sell a running product to 20-30 year olds that want to create a healthy social circle and get involved with their community.
Others may sell a weight training program to business bros that want to get jacked with only 3 days in the gym. That way they have both money and muscles so they can live a fun life. Who wouldn’t buy that (if they resonate with the product’s philosophy)?
My writing product, 2 Hour Writer, is my unique experience with personal branding and gaining millions of followers through digital writing.
I experimented with idea generation, newsletter writing, and social media content over the course of 2-3 years.
You don’t have to wait that long.
I actually recommend launching immediately.
You need data and feedback as to how to make your products better.
The benefits you reap from living with purpose are your marketing firepower to help people live better lives.
That is, the underlying philosophy you forge through self-experimentation is how you generate a creative income from your pursuits.
3) Personal Distribution Center
This all sounds great so far.
- Study your interests to actualize your goals
- Experiment with a personal project to get results
- Turn that project into a product you can sell with purpose
But most people get stuck there.
They don’t realize that you need both a product and people to actually make money.
You have to build distribution.
This isn’t optional.
My favorite way to do this is by building a personal brand.
One, because it’s becoming a necessity.
Brands, companies, and employers alike are hiring based on your public resume (your profile).
Two, the following you gain is leverage.
You can pivot as your life does and sell anything you want (as long as you don’t box yourself into one narrow niche).
Three, most other forms of distribution leave you with nothing.
Paid ads and cold outreach are extremely powerful, but what happens when you stop doing them?
Do you have an audience or email list that was built along the way?
Can you ever take a break?
Can you cultivate a meaningful philosophy behind your brand and not be limited in the products you sell?
Maybe, but it’s not likely.
Build a personal distribution center by:
- Passing down the lessons you learn pursuing your goals
- Writing out your thoughts, beliefs, and opinions to separate yourself from others
- Teaching what you learn in a persuasive manner
That’s really it.
There are technical details and nuanced strategies for social media growth… but that’s a goal and project that you can experiment with for yourself.
(That’s how you start learning every marketable skill there is, by building your business and applying what you learn to it).
This is the future career path.
This is how you monetize close to everything you learn.
This is how you get paid for just living.
The future belongs to people that pass down their valuable experiences to improve others’ lives.
That’s what all the best businesses do, just take a look at the next social media post you see (from the lens of a creator, not a consumer) and you can verify this for yourself.
Join in on the self-sufficient and growing utopia that is the creator economy and thank me later.