OCTOBER 1, 2021

Welcome to The Tilt, a twice-weekly newsletter for content entrepreneurs. Each edition is packed with the latest news, strategies, and tactics, plus inspiring creator stories and exclusive education, all to help you create, grow, and monetize better.

Features in this issue (view online):

full tilt

Fans Can Be the Best Marketers for Your Content Brand

Word-of-mouth marketing works.

A word-of-mouth marketing impression nets five times more sales than a paid impression.

People also are 90% more likely to trust a brand recommended by a friend. (Invespcro collected all those data reports.)

Are you working word-of-mouth marketing for your content business?

While you may not sell products and services like most brands, you do need to sell your content if only to grow an audience right now.

Sure, you can add that “please-forward-or-refer-to-a-friend” note at the end. But why not take it next level? Create a referral program.

Tilt Advice

Pick a reward attractive to your fans that fits in your budget. It could be made in cash, creator coins, gift cards, merchandise, account credits, or discount codes. You also could set up a leader board and a public recognition system.

Pick a reward structure that also works for your business and your fans, including:

  • One-sided: The person who makes the referral receives a reward.
  • Double-sided: Both the person who made the referral and the person who signed up receive a reward.
  • Multi-tiered: The person who makes the referrals receives bigger rewards the more people they get to sign up. For example, Matthew earns one point for new subscribers one through five. Once he makes his sixth referral, he earns 10 points for every new subscriber.

Capterra created this detailed review of rewards tools. Keep in mind that the analysis was primarily done for traditional B2B and B2C companies.

At The Tilt, we use Sparkloop for the $TILT coin referral reward program. Its pricing calculator indicates it would be $99 a month for up to 20K subscribers. We don’t require our audience to sign up for the referral program. Instead, a unique referral link is included at the bottom of the recipient’s newsletter (see our section in the bottom footer below).

The Tilt Discord community mentioned Genius Referrals as another option. Its start plan covers up to 10K subscribers for $49 a month. Referral Magic also was cited. It doesn’t include pricing on its site.

While most of the referral software programs focus on email subscribers, there are tools that help other formats. Refer-O-Matic lets podcasters create a rewards program. Their listeners can sign up for their referral program and receive a unique link to share. If that link is used, the referring listener is rewarded.

– Ann Gynn

Learn how referrals can reduce your acquisition costs, the best time to send, and more in the longer story.

content entrepreneur spotlight

TikTok’s Kasey Playlist Makes Music into a Content Business

Entrepreneur: Kasey Gelsomino

Biz: Kasey’s Playlist

Tilt: TikTok and the music business

Primary Channel: TikTok (68.4K)

Other Channels: Spotify (58.2K), Instagram (417)

Rev Streams: TikTok partnerships, third-party music review websites

Our Favorite Actionable Advice:

  • Be patient: Don’t publish content and expect it to go viral overnight. You don’t control that. Algorithms play a big part in its promotion.
  • Experiment: Kasey didn’t go all in when TikTok expanded video time to three minutes. She smartly continues shorter content, which is what drew people to the channel, while testing longer videos.
  • Don’t wait: You don’t need to be “perfect” or create “perfect” content. Get started and publish consistently.

– Kelly Wynne

All the Story: To read Kasey’s story, what she’s learned about TikTok, and more, check this out.

Know a content creator who’s going full tilt? DM us or reply to this email.

quick talk

Caught on … The Information

It took TikTok half the time to reach 1 billion users than it took Instagram to hit that same milestone.” – Kaya Yurieff

things to know

  • Willing to pay: 58% say they would pay $1 to $15 a month to access their favorite creator’s exclusive content, while 63% say they have tipped creators at least once. (The Influencer Marketing Factory)
    Tilt Take: The newly released survey from TIMF presents some helpful considerations for creators about their revenue streams.
  • Creator money cut: Snapchat says it reduced payouts to creators on its Spotlight platform (launched November 2020) from $1M daily to millions a month to avoid repetitive content. (Tubefilter)
    Tilt Take: Mimicking what other creators do makes it difficult, if not impossible, to build your own content brand (or Snapchat’s brand).
  • Write as you: Among the tips to drive blog traffic from Chris Craft: “My personal experiences are mine and not anyone else’s. This differentiates my content from other writers, even if we’re writing about the same topic.” (Inspire First)
    Tilt Take: Follow Chris’ advice and your audience is more likely to connect with you.
  • TikTok tops 1B: Over 1B people now go to TikTok. That’s a big jump from the 689M monthly active users in July (and 55M in January 2018). (Tubefilter)
    Tilt Take: Revisit your target audience. Are they migrating or adding TikTok to their content repertoire? If so, think about how you might use the platform too.
Tech and Tools
  • Instagram on Google: Reports say Instagram and TikTok are negotiating deals with Google to index their content in search results. (Search Engine Journal)
    Tilt Take: Twitter already has a similar search deal. It indicates Google SEO may be a necessary skill for Instagram and TikTok creators too.
  • Twitter considers NFTs: Twitter may expand its tools to better serve creators with NFTs (certified digital assets). It includes connecting their crypto wallets to Twitter to track and showcase on the platform. Also under testing is the chance to tip with Bitcoin in creators’ new Twitter tip jar. (TechCrunch)
    Tilt Take: We second what Bankless wrote: “Twitter is just the first in a long line of social media platforms that’s helping crypto cross the chasm.”
And Finally
  • Good results: A year ago, Nathan Apodaca took his skateboard and thirst for Ocean Spray cranberry juice to TikTok. Since then, he’s signed with an entertainment agency and bought a house for his family. He created an anniversary TikTok to celebrate. (The Publish Press)
    Tilt Take: Nathan didn’t do the video to promote Ocean Spray or skateboards or anything else. He let his authentic self do the talking and skating, and people watched.
  • Bad results: Influencers Brendan Morais and Piepr James were accused of going on ABC’s Bachelor in Paradise reality dating show to boost their follower numbers. So, their fellow contestants ultimately sent them packing. There’s more to the story, but Brendan lost 28.5% or 100K of his followers, while Pieper lost 11% or 10K of hers. (Morning Brew)
    Tilt Take: Don’t do something just to gain followers. Your audience isn’t going to like the obvious self-promotion and realize you’re in it for you, not them.

we’re a stan for Rosanna Pansino

Rosanna Pansino serves her viewers mouth-watering desserts with a side of refreshingly cheeky jokes on her sought-after, self-titled YouTube channel. “Ro,” as she’s referred to online, shows her now 13M subscribers fun takes on Spongebob pastries and cakes moonlighting as pizzas in her Nerdy Nummies – a collective of videos featuring “geeky recipes.” They are among the most viewed on the platform.

Why we’re a Stan: Ro’s Nerdy Nummies videos are brilliant and have a really fun content tilt – baking quirky desserts for others.

– Shameyka McCalman

Catch more about Rosanna’s success story here.

the business of content

the tilt team

Your team for this issue: Joe Pulizzi, Ann Gynn, Laura Kozak, Marc Maxhimer, and Dave Anthony, with an assist from Kelly Wynne, Shameyka McCalman, and Don Borger.