Creators play a big role in social media. If you’re a creator you need to know how to protect, own, and control your digital identity — learn how here.
Keyword(s): digital identity
Did you know the creator economy is estimated to be worth over $104 billion? Between October 2020 and August 2021, over $800 million in venture capital was invested into startups in the industry. Its overall growth is expected to line up with the gig economy, which can mean trillions.
That being said, you might wonder about the role digital identity plays in all of it, and we’re here to help you learn what you need to know. How can you create one of your own? Why does identity even matter in the grand scheme of things?
Read on to find out.
Creating Your Digital Identity
When you’re creating your digital identity, you can also think of it as your brand. It’s crucial to take your time when you’re creating your digital identity, as it isn’t exactly simple to change once it’s been established. Here are a few questions you can ask yourself to get started.
- What are you passionate about?
- Is there a certain subject you want your content to center around?
- What’s your story?
- What does your target audience look like?
To create a successful online identity, you have to know yourself. At a minimum, you have to know the persona you’re portraying. If your content is widely varying with no clear sense of focus, then your audience is going to be the same way and you’re going to struggle with consistency.
Sitting down, creating an outline for your content and the people you’d like it to reach, and then executing a plan to help yourself grow is going to be the number one way to establish yourself and the persona you’re looking to create.
Why Your Online Identity Matters
There are a few things that drive users to want to support their favorite creators, according to Yahoo:
- They attempt to support them under any circumstance
- They feel inspired by the creator
- They trust almost everything they advertise
Now, you might not have signed up for this kind of attention when you created your first piece of content, but it’s something that comes with the territory. When you have a following, others are going to pay attention to you and they’re going to trust the things you have to say.
It can be easy to forget this when you’re going about your day-to-day, but what you do matters to the people who watch you. It also matters to the brand you’ve set out to create for yourself.
Your online identity allows you to learn more about companies and movements, and it also allows you to gain valuable insights into the creative industry. Whether this is done through interacting with other creators or educational content, it has the power to create a lot of influence over your sphere of the internet.
It can also control the opportunities you have through access to.
The Importance of Maintaining Control
That sentence is enough for some to understand the power that comes with maintaining control over their online identity. For others, it might not matter as much. Other reasons maintaining control over this aspect of your life can help you out in the future, though.
If you decide you’d like to get involved in the creator economy later, then your digital footprint is going to matter. Your digital footprint is made up of everything you’ve ever posted, tweeted, or shared on social media, and it’s all floating around out there somewhere.
With resources like social media archives or Wayback Machine, you never really know what people might be able to see from you. You can think that something is gone, but nothing is ever truly erased in this digitally-driven age. Knowing how to curate your privacy settings can help in situations like this, but so can curating what you post before it’s out there.
Clean Up Your Digital Footprint
There are, however, things you can do to help clean up your digital footprint.
A lot of what we just discussed is your active footprint, but your passive footprint can be just as damaging. This includes things like your location, websites you’ve visited, how long you spend on those sites, and even the devices and operating systems you use. All of these things are trackable on your computer, meaning a lot of trails for others to follow.
Cleaning up your profiles can help here. Making things private, updating your security settings, and even deleting your old accounts is a good move to make. So is using a VPN to help make yourself untraceable.
It might seem obvious, but it’s crucial to take whatever steps you can.
You Can’t Control Everything, Though
But it’s just as important to remember that you can’t control everything about your digital identity. Occasionally — especially if you have a big following — you might into trouble with rumors or some other thing that might threaten your digital identity.
Some things you’re going to need to address, while other situations you’ll be able to ignore. The important thing to remember here is that you can maintain control of how you react to the situation. Often, how you handle things is going to have a much bigger impact on your brand than the situation itself.
How To Keep Ownership of It
A great way to keep ownership of your digital identity is through usernames and domain names. If you can match all of these up, then you’re golden. However, with so many new users and websites being created, it can be hard to keep all your names exactly the same.
No matter what, you should keep all of your digital identity consistent, and keep accessing it simple. Having your website and a great domain name to go alongside is the perfect way to help your audience identify where you stand in the creative sector.
It also helps you weed out the competition and people who might try to imitate your presence. With the rise in fake social media pages popping up and the abundance of people buying common domain names and reselling them at a higher price, it’s more important now than ever to stay on top of keeping your digital identity safe.
What Does Digital Identity Have To Do With the Creator Economy?
But how does purchasing your domains and creating a consistent brand help you get ahead in the creator economy? It might sound like these things don’t all connect, but you’d be surprised.
It’s just like running a normal business.
The more consistent you remain within your brand, the more comfortable your audience is going to be when they interact with it. They know what to expect from you and your content, and your digital identity becomes something they can find safety in (which is why they tend to trust creators so much).
That isn’t to say you can’t change throughout your career, but it is to say that sticking with your brand is a great way to create consistent interaction with your content.
The Effect Consistency Can Have
We’ve already touched on the trust that consistency can bring, but that’s not all it can do for your online identity.
It’s also going to make you more recognizable among followers, and it’s going to help avoid confusion in the future. You have to show up in other ways too, though.
That means coming through with great customer service, a unique brand voice, and coming up with different ways to consistently separate yourself from the crowd. There are other ways you can accomplish this as well, though
Often, people are going to make typos — especially when they’re typing in your domain name. That’s why, yes it’s important to purchase your actual domain name, but it’s also smart to purchase any potential typos that come up. Then, you can use those typos to link back to your actual website.
This makes it easier for people to access your brand and navigate all the content and services you have available online for them.
Why It Matters
Consistency can make it easier for people to interact with you, and it’s a great way to grow your following, but other perks come with it inside the creator economy. The biggest ones have to do with you.
If you’re an independent creator, then you know the amount of work that comes with creating your brand, building a following, and then continuing to show up for your audience. If someone attempts to ruin that, then you know the effect it can have on your self-confidence.
You can also understand the pride that comes with building your presence from the ground up. It’s important to protect that and yourself, and today’s advances have made that easier than ever to accomplish. With a bit of research and planning, you can have your entire brand protected from anyone who can even think about coming after what you’ve built.
How Can You Leverage the Creator Economy?
You’ll also need to do a bit of leveraging to reach that point, though. The creator economy is such a new concept, and it’s difficult to predict and keep track of. A lot of companies, like banks for musicians or websites for niche creators to find work, are already finding their place in the market. you must do the same when you can.
The best way to do this? Solve a problem.
Find a pain point for your target audience, and then work to fix that for them. This can mean providing services like the ones above or creating content that caters to a specific kind of problem that’s pressing right now.
This route can be dangerous if the problem you choose to solve isn’t going to remain relevant for many years to come, but if you do things correctly, then you can ensure your brand is able to flip and transition whenever it’s necessary. Rebranding is common among creators, it’s just important that any changes you go through make sense for your digital identity.
Who Can Help?
Working with companies and experts that understand this problem can help you prepare for what’s to come. While the creator economy is a fairly new one, there are still people out there who have been part of it from its origins. The patterns this economy displays are also similar to ones that have been presented in the past.
While the creator economy can be fairly unpredictable, there are still things that remain the same no matter what. While your services are largely going to be online, it’s important to remember that you’re still serving humans and humans like habit.
That’s why it’s essential to take the points we’ve touched on today and place them into your brand while building, and to create your own way of doing things.
Hiring consultants, accountants, bookkeepers, financial experts, and even hosting companies can help you stay ahead of the curve, but what you bring to the table is ultimately what’s going to keep ahead of it all.
Take Control of Your Digital Identity Today
Whether you’re in the creative sector or you just spend a lot of time among the masses in its audience, it’s important to take control of your digital identity to avoid risks and maximize your reward.
There are a ton of ways to do this, but one of the best is by purchasing your very own domain name. It helps establish your presence online, and it’s a great way to help your audience members recognize you and your work whenever they come across it.
To establish your online identity today, create your very own domain name here.