While 50 million people operate in the creator economy, most attention goes to the 1% (or less than 1%) who make big bucks and have audiences totaling over 1M. Middle-class creators – those earning money from a content business – get ignored.

That’s why The Tilt launched the Content Entrepreneur Awards with the inaugural class of Unsung Content Entrepreneurs. 

We asked readers of The Tilt newsletter and our social media audiences who is creating content and running a business they love. Self-nominations were encouraged, and a few were selected from our weekly content entrepreneur spotlights. Then, we combed through the nominations and conducted additional research to winnow the list and create this first class of Content Entrepreneur Awards finalists.

The Tilt founder Joe Pulizzi says, “So many content entrepreneurs are out there doing amazing work, but their expertise is usually focused on a small audience in one particular niche. We thought it was necessary for us to call out these ‘unsung’ creators, not just to honor them, but also as great cases for other aspiring content creators.”

This content entrepreneur awards group encompasses creators of all ages from around the world who cover diverse topics, from jewelry training and digital nomads to senior sports geeks and education around the creator economy.

The top Unsung Content Entrepreneurs will be announced and recognized at Creator Economy Expo May 1-3 in Cleveland, Ohio.

Here is the first class of the Content Entrepreneur Awards’ Unsung Content Creators (in alpha order by business name):

Entrepreneur: Ashley Cummings

Biz: Ashley R. Cummings

Content Tilt: Freelance writing

Channels: Website, LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook, Mastodon

Products: Newsletter, podcast, guides, templates, merch, direct services

Entrepreneur: Ryan Biddulph

Biz: Blogging From Paradise

Content Tilt: Helping bloggers reach their goals

Channels: Website, Twitter, Facebook, Instagram

Products: Blog, courses, newsletter, ebooks

Entrepreneur: Shane Parrish

Biz: Brain Food

Content Tilt: Timeless insights and actionable ideas

Channels: Website, Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, YouTube

Products: Newsletter, podcast, books, courses

Entrepreneur: Dasha Kennedy

Biz: The Broke Black Girl

Content Tilt: Go-to financial expert for Black women

Channels: Website, Instagram, LinkedIn, Facebook

Products: Community, e-books, book

Entrepreneur: Christine Gritmon

Biz: Christine Gritmon

Content Tilt: Empowering professionals to step into their personal brands on social media

Channels: Website, Twitter, LinkedIn, Instagram, Facebook, YouTube

Products: Workshops, coaching, speaking, merch

Entrepreneurs: Albert Tam and Wesley Anna

Biz: Combat Culture

Content Tilt: Inclusive Muay Thai boxing lifestyle

Channels: YouTube, Instagram

Products: Subscription-based community, merch

Entrepreneur: Michael Piperno 

Biz: The Comvia Group

Content Tilt: Leadership communication

Channels: Website, LinkedIn, YouTube

Products: Podcast, coaching, training, workshops

Entrepreneur: Alex Cattoni

Biz: Copy Posse

Content Tilt: Copywriting how-to

Channels: Website, Facebook, YouTube, LinkedIn, Instagram

Products: Coaching, courses, memberships, merch (in addition to copywriting services)

Entrepreneur: Jocelyn Elizabeth

Biz: Crazy Lamp Lady

Content Tilt: Seeing value in items most people overlook

Channels: Website, YouTube, Facebook, eBay

Products: Merch

Entrepreneur: Jay Clouse

Biz: Creator Science

Content Tilt: Helping casual creators become professional creators

Channels: Website, YouTube, Twitter, Instagram, TikTok

Products: Community, newsletter, courses, podcast

Entrepreneur: Justin Moore

Biz: Creator Wizard

Content Tilt: Negotiating sponsorships for creator businesses

Channels: Website, Twitter, YouTube, Instagram, TikTok

Products: Podcast, courses, consulting, merch

Entrepreneur: Anthony Fasano

Biz: Engineering Management Institute

Content Tilt: Helping engineers become effective managers

Channels: Website, LinkedIn, YouTube, Twitter, Facebook

Products: Podcast, courses, books, videos

Entrepreneur: Ruky T

Biz: Firm for the Culture

Content Tilt: Trademarks, culture, and technology

Channels: Substack site, LinkedIn

Product: Newsletter

Entrepreneur: Josh Spector

Biz: For The Interested and I Want To Know

Content Tilt: Helping creative entrepreneurs

Channels: Website, Facebook, Twitter

Products: Newsletter, podcast, training, consulting

Entrepreneur: Kate Jackson

Biz: Framed Cooks

Content Tilt: Fun, family-friendly recipes

Channels: Website, Pinterest, Instagram, Facebook

Product: Newsletter

Entrepreneur: Ray Glier

Biz: Geezer Jock News

Content Tilt: Serious older athletes in a range of sports

Channels: Website, Twitter, Facebook, Instagram

Product: Newsletter, merch

Entrepreneur: Marianne Lehnis

Biz: Green Techpreneur

Content Tilt: Helping climate-tech entrepreneurs and investors build, grow, and thrive

Channels: Website, Substack site, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn, YouTube

Products: Newsletter, podcast, job board, courses

Entrepreneur: Joe Philipson and James Tennant

Biz: Indie Bandits

Content Tilt: Celebration of independent gaming

Channels: Website, Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, YouTube, Twitch

Products: Podcast, newsletter, State of Independent Games Report, webinars, Patreon memberships

Entrepreneur: Lisa Sicard

Biz: Inspire to Thrive

Content Tilt: Helping people thrive online through content marketing, social media, blogging, SEO

Channels: Website, Twitter

Products: Courses, e-books, consulting (also provides direct services)

Entrepreneur: Leslie Samuel

Biz: Interactive Biology

Content Tilt: Making biology fun

Channels: Website, YouTube, Twitter

Products: Videos, guides

Entrepreneur: Sumana Jeddy

Biz: Jeddy Wellness

Content Tilt: Evidence-based wellness strategies

Channels: Website, Linktree, TikTok, LinkedIn, Instagram, TikTok

Products: Podcast, courses, coaching, memberships

Entrepreneur: Peter Keep

Biz: Jewellery Training Solutions

Content Tilt: How to make jewelry

Channels: Website, Facebook, YouTube, Instagram

Products: Courses, jewelry-making materials

Entrepreneur: Khudania Ajay

Biz: The KAJ Masterclass Live

Content Tilt: Helping small businesses and entrepreneurs learn from individuals who have built successful brands

Channels: Website, YouTube

Products: Podcast, videos, consulting

Entrepreneurs: Marc Leach and Tricia Leach

Biz: Keep Your Daydream

Content Tilt: RV travels for people who enjoy their life but are ready for a change

Channels: Website, YouTube, Facebook, YouTube, Twitter, Instagram

Products: Newsletter, videos, podcast, book, courses, Amazon affiliate

Entrepreneurs: Sadie Carpenter and Gavriel HaCohen

Biz: Leaving Eden

Content Tilt: Exploration of cults and cult-like organizations

Channels: Linktree, Patreon, Instagram, Facebook, Twitter

Products: Podcast, memberships, merch

Entrepreneur: Lori Harder

Biz: Lori Harder

Content Tilt: Helping people unleash their inner powerhouse

Channels: Website, Twitter, Facebook, Instagram

Products: Newsletter, books, courses, speaking engagements

Entrepreneur: Jamie Northrup

Biz: Minimalist Hustler

Content Tilt: Making money online

Channels: Website, Medium, Twitter

Products: Newsletter, memberships

Entrepreneur: Michael Becker

Biz: New Earth Knowledge

Content Tilt: New age spirituality and conscious living

Channels: Website, Instagram, LinkedIn, YouTube, Twitter

Products: Newsletter, podcast, ebooks, consulting, courses, coaching

Entrepreneurs: Sarah Stewart Holland and Beth Silvers

Biz: Pantsuit Politics

Content Tilt: News favoring curiosity over conflict

Channels: Website, Instagram, Twitter, Facebook, TikTok

Products: Podcast, books, events, speaking engagements

Entrepreneur: Jamie Pootlepress

Biz: Pootlepress

Content Tilt: Help for using WordPress

Channels: Website, Twitter

Products: Courses, plugins, training

Entrepreneur: Nora Dunn

Biz: The Professional Hobo

Content Tilt: Life as a digital nomad

Channels: Website, YouTube, Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest

Products: Blog, videos, books, courses 

Entrepreneurs: Ian and Ana

Biz: The Other Side 

Content Tilt: Living your best life on the road

Channels: YouTube, website, Instagram

Products: Travel guide

Entrepreneur: Jason Norris

Biz: Recipe Teacher

Content Tilt: Niche recipe development

Channels: Website, Instagram, Facebook, Pinterest

Products: Newsletter, affiliate products

Entrepreneur: Roberto Blake

Biz: Roberto Blake 

Content Tilt: Profiting from passion in the creator economy

Channels: Website, YouTube, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn

Products: Videos, podcast, consulting, speaking engagements

Entrepreneur: Ryan Robinson

Biz: Ryan Robinson

Content Tilt: Teaching others to make money from blogging

Channels: Website, Twitter, YouTube, LinkedIn

Products: Blog, newsletter, courses

Entrepreneur: Heather Lloyd-Martin

Biz: SEO Copywriting

Content Tilt: Search engine optimization for content

Channels: Website, Twitter, LinkedIn, Facebook

Products: Courses, training, consulting (also provides direct services)

Entrepreneur: Jörn “Joe” Menninger

Biz: StartupRad.io

Content Tilt: Authority on German, Swiss, Austrian startups and venture capital

Channels: Podcast, YouTube, Substack, LinkedIn, Instagram, Facebook, Twitter

Products: Podcasts, internet radio station, inbound VC index, Startup Raven (platform to connect startups and investors)

Entrepreneur: Caroline Guntur

Biz: The Swedish Organizer

Content Tilt: Organization, systems architecture, productivity for entrepreneurs

Channels: Website, Instagram

Products: Consulting, virtual events, retreats

Entrepreneur: Jeff Gargas

Biz: Teach Better

Content Tilt: Helping teachers lead, manage, engage, and differentiate

Channels: Website, Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, YouTube, Instagram, Pinterest

Products: Training, online courses, podcast network, speaker network, merch

Entrepreneur: Alexis Grant

Biz: They Got Acquired

Content Tilt: Selling businesses

Channels: Website, LinkedIn, Twitter 

Products: Newsletter, podcast, coaching

Entrepreneur: Philip Van Dusen

Biz: Verhaal Brand Design

Content Tilt: Educating creatives

Channels: YouTube, Facebook, LinkedIn, website, Twitter, Instagram

Products: Podcast, videos, mastermind groups (and direct service provider)

Meet and talk business with many of these Unsung Content Entrepreneurs May 1-3, 2023, in Cleveland, Ohio, at Creator Economy Expo. Register today and use coupon code TILT200 to save $200 an in-person pass!

About the author

Ann regularly combines words and strategy for B2B, B2C, and nonprofits, continuing to live up to her high school nickname, Editor Ann. An IABC Communicator of the Year and founder of G Force Communication, Ann coaches and trains professionals in all things content. Connect with her on LinkedIn and Twitter.