What are Creator Coins? Should I Care?

You're here for marketing stuff, not all this new-fangled space-age astro-currency. But this is about martech. It's all about how to keep creators and content makers in the money. Cha-ching. 

Copy of recession

Alt coins for this. Alt coins for that. Your mum's just released an Alt coin. Your Dad's just released an Alt coin. Even your aunt's just released an alt coin. It's called Aunt Coin. 

And the industry's just going to get noisier. 

So, we're going to focus on this lil ol' social token called Rally. This token can be exchanged for 'creator coins' on their platform, which represents communal ownership of a media company or personality. A fan can purchase the coin to signify a level of fandom to their chosen brand, access tiered content, purchase creator-specific NFTs, or even get early access content. Plus, the coin may accrue value, alongside the growing popularity of the creator, which can then be converted to Ethereum, and then to other forms of currency. So win-win for everyone. 

“Rally is really a network or a project that enables creators or artists or musicians — anybody with a social following — to launch their own economies,” Bremner Morris said on the TechFirst podcast. 

“And what I mean by that is that each of these artists have an existing community of followers and people who are really excited about what they do. But right now there’s not really a mechanism for those followers to show their support and also to participate in the economy of these artists.”

We all know influencers have issues with monetising content to ol' fashion way. So a creator coin is a way for that individual to benefit themselves, and their fans, monetarily. 

But before we go further into all this, we better go through something I mentioned before: the Creator Economy.

So, what is it? This so-called 'Creator Economy'?

There are over 50 million creators on popular social media platforms. That's a lot of competition. So, how does one make money in these conditions? How do you stand out from the crowd?

With Creator Coins, influencers will be able to craft their own type of cryptocurrency, with which they can build fan engagement. 

"It fits into what I call the “Leisure Economy,” where we someday will all get paid to play games and build careers that didn’t exist before. I’m talking about folks like esports athletes, cosplayers, influencers, YouTubers, livestreamers, modders, and many other people", says Dean Takahashi, Lead Writer at GamesBeat.

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So, it's important to pay attention to emerging fields. Or even the changing of the content creating guard. 

So, how does this all work?

Like most things crypto, there's no single use case or definition. 

"BitClout sells coins as investments in a celebrities fame. While Rally lets creators sell their own coins, determining how they distribute", says the Tilt. 

Creator coins are custom branded. They become part of the brand. For example, a creator could make a coin, and give it to fans who spend time watching their livestreams. The fans could then use the coin to buy virtual items, or spend it with another streamer, keeping all that within the community and circle. 

Rally has set up an influencer platform, Taki, that gives a helping hand to creators. It removes the barriers that make for an illusive revenue stream, and generates new incomes streams for influencers and content producers. Fans can even purchase stuff like recorded birthday videos from their favourite streamers.

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With the coin itself, fans can buy, donate and hold the currency. And it's not just a one way street - creators can transfer them back to the fans whenever they want. It's heightening fan-creator interaction using monetary reward. And it shows a level of support that is just not available to creators on traditional platforms like Youtube. 

Overall, it makes interactions easier. For example, streamers can utilise their expertise to provide a service to their fans beyond just a one-way video interaction. One streamer used creator coins to take payments from fans who wanted advice about their card deck for Blizzard's Hearthstone. 

Rally's CEO Kevin Chou suggests that the blockchain tech makes it transparent and easy to use, on the customer side at least.

"I've been working on this almost two years. And we've built a lot of deep technology. It took us a long time to build the technology because of how hard it is to work with blockchain tech. But we're excited to take the covers off, and we have had a bunch of creators just fall in love with this thing."

The foundational building blocks in an easy-to-use blockchain toolkit will allow creators to form better relationships and monetisation models with their viewers. And with all of this, the viewers don't remain separate, and are instead shaped into a community. In terms of repeat watching and engagement, sociability and conversation is where the trick of retention lies. 

Gregarious Narain, speaking on his own coin, told Forbes: "Creator coin feels like the wrong name. I think of them as community coins."

What Separates a Creator Coin from Traditional Currency?

A creator and their community own any value built up in their insular economy. There's non of the 'big 3' online creator fears: demonetisation, censorship, de-platforming. 

If it works, says Chou, creators wont have to rely on the fickleness of the big social media platforms, which tend to keep a lot of the proceeds a creator, well, creates. And with blockchain, they get to see where the coins are, who the coins are with, and control the overall scarcity. And they can keep 100% of the profits. 

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Joe Pulizzi, of The Tilt, says he's gone all in with creator coins. Releasing his own $TILT coin, he suggests a community's entire economy can be run on their coin. The creator creates value, and so does the viewer. But it goes beyond creators.

Some analysts have been charging Creator Coins for briefings, and other individuals have even been charging for physical products. 

"There isn't a 1:1 relationship with usual government-issued currency, however," says  John Koetsier Senior Contributor at Forbes. "Having spent, for argument’s sake, 100 of a creator coin on a product, you haven’t lost those coins. They’re not used up. They stay in your portfolio, as an asset of sorts, and can increase in value as the community grows. They can be sold, or traded for other creators’ coins."

However, Rally stresses that creator coins are not investments and are not guaranteed to rise. Just like any other economy, creator economies can collapse. 

So, How Do You Get Your Hands on A Creator Coin?

Fans can obtain coins by going to Rally's website and purchasing them through traditional means e.g Mum's credit card. There's also some pretty creative ways creators are using to reward fans. You might be given a coin by subscribing to a higher tier on Twitch, or be sent them by other users. 

Some users might even just hold onto the creator coin as a nice lil collectable, to represent their support of a creator, just like any other piece of merch. Some creators may even use the coin as a loyalty tool, to identify top fans and offer rewards for the most dedicated fans. 

Pokemon Reaction GIF by MOODMAN