Creators have continued to expand their influence, moving from the individual social media posts of the early creator economy days to opportunities in entertainment and strategic partnerships with brands. And this momentum has not gone unnoticed.
Forbes wrote in the introduction to its Forbes Top Creators 2023 list, “Creators. Influencers. Streamers. Vloggers. Whatever you call them, these powerful social media personalities are calling the shots in entertainment and advertising. This year, the 50 honorees on our second annual Forbes Top Creator list harnessed their combined 2.6 billion followers to haul in an estimated $700 million in earnings. That’s up more than 20% from 2022’s $570 million score. They’re not alone: In 2023, brands will spend an estimated $21 billion on creator marketing, up from just $1.6 billion seven years ago”
“We are thrilled to see several Open Influence talent partners on the Forbes Top Creators list this year,” Open Influence Head of Talent Relations Katie Plattner said. “It is a true joy to see our valued partners amplified and celebrated with such prestige. Our position in the industry allows us to witness and support talent entrepreneurship day in and day out. Our partners were ranked on just that. Not only do we appreciate the category and what it stands for: We concur. Congratulations to the top 50!”
Ferragni got off to an early start in the creator economy. The native of Milan, Italy, launched fashion blog The Blonde Salad in 2009, before Instagram even existed.
She was the subject of Harvard Business Review’s first-ever case study on a fashion influencer in 2015, and the model and television star has collaborated with high fashion brands including Christian Dior, Fendi, Ferragamo, Gucci, Louis Vuitton, and Prada, along with launching her own eyewear, makeup, ready-to-wear clothing, shoe, and swimsuit brand.
Forbes tallied her 2023 earnings at $7 million, with a total follower count of 36 million and an average engagement rate of 1.5%.
@chiaraferragnibrand The Cuoricino Collection 💕💖 Now on www.chiaraferragnibrand.com #ChiaraFerragni ♬ suono originale – ChiaraFerragniBrand
A comedy sketch about his girlfriend doing her makeup in the car sent Waheed down the road to virality, and his momentum continues with videos on TikTok and YouTube on topics such as bad GPS shortcuts, declined credit cards, and lost cars, as well as slapstick stunts including eating a “train salad” (nails and bolts atop a bed of arugula and tomatoes), staging his death after stubbing his toe, and working out in the gym atop a toilet.
Waheed has 38 million total followers on his various Adam W handles, with an average engagement rate of 1.5% and earnings of $11 million this year, and he has partnered with brands including Adobe, Doritos, Dr Pepper, Google, L’Oreal, the National Football League, Old Spice, Samsung, and T-Mobile.
He also inked a three-picture content deal with Jimmy Kimmel’s production studio, Wheelhouse, and launched Creator Circle, an education company that teaches people how to go viral, and the $15 million Early Stage Fund to invest in creators.
Najjar, better known by her Tinx social handle, has earned $7.5 million in 2023 and totals 2 million followers, with a whopping 6.64% engagement rate on TikTok.
She has also expanded into other media like podcasts, radio (“It’s Me, Tinx,” on SiriusXM) and YouTube, and Najjar’s Rich Mom Gear clothing brand sells embroidered sweats and shorts directly to fans.
Tinx has a Chipotle bowl named after her and endorsement deals with brands such as Aldo, Intimissimi, and Kleenex.
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The top 10 on the Forbes Top Creators 2023 list was chock full of familiar names:
- Jimmy Donaldson (MrBeast)
- Olajide Olatunji (KSI)
- Jake Paul
- Rhett & Link
- Charli D’Amelio
- Logan Paul
- Elliot Tebele (FuckJerry)
- Emma Chamberlain
- Matt Rife
- Brent Rivera
Open Influence’s team stays on top of the latest trends and is here to help you maximize your creator campaigns. Open Influence is a global creator marketing agency dedicated to creating engaging campaigns. Reach out to us today!