There’s no denying that social media is a fast-paced, fast-growing industry.
This poses a challenge for content creators who need to constantly evolve to stay relevant.
Trends and social challenges go as fast as they come, and social platforms are constantly being updated to meet the needs of their users. Social algorithms never seem to stop evolving, and the creator economy is growing faster than ever.
In fact, it’s estimated that the total size of the creator economy is over $104 billion dollars. While some 200M people identify as a content creator, according to Linktree’s 2022 Creator Report.
These huge numbers are a lot to take in. They may even make you question your place and relevance within the creator marketing industry. If so, you’re not alone. 46% of the creators we recently surveyed said that ‘staying relevant’ was one of the hardest things about the job.
That’s why we’re breaking down what it means for creators to ‘stay relevant, why it’s important for you to stay relevant, and tips on how to stay relevant, all with the help of some industry experts — Vamp creators.
What does ‘staying relevant’ mean?
To us, the term ‘staying relevant’ is subjective. It can mean a lot of different things to a lot of different creators. Which is why we’ve gone straight to the source to get their opinions on what ‘staying relevant’ actually means:
Staying relevant means keeping yourself in the spotlight, which then helps you grow your engaged audience and secure more work.
@laphealsterling, 2 years experience as a creator.
Staying relevant to me is continuously creating valuable content that aligns with my purpose, while being entertaining, inspiring, and motivating to my audience.
@meedah.s, 6 years experience as a creator.
Why is it important for creators to stay relevant on social media?
Think of ‘staying relevant’ as one of the many professional skills you constantly need to work on and maintain. This is what’s going to help you grow your social audience and secure more brand collaborations.
Social users have a short attention span and their social feeds are highly saturated. So only the most relevant creators are going to stand out to them and entice them to hit that follow button.
Meanwhile, brands want to be partnering with relevant creators, because this is what’s going to make their campaign resonate with social users and drive them to action.
Staying relevant is super important. You should want people to relate to your content, be touched by your content, and have them feel involved with your content. It’s also important to stay relevant in the minds of brands. It's a very competitive industry, so staying relevant is important for me to thrive and secure as many jobs as possible.
@basharbelal, 7 years experience as a creator.
How do you stay relevant on social media?
By combining a mixture of our own tips with our creators’ tips, here are five ways to help you stay relevant on social media.
#1 Keep up with trending content
It’s no surprise that creating content that taps into the latest social trends makes you feel more relevant to social users. Whether you’re recreating trends within your niche or aligning your content to the latest platform trends, this tip is a sure-fire way to ensure you always remain front of mind to your audience.
I ideally create my content inline with the yearly calendar, social trends, cultural moments, and the reality of my life. I believe continuously telling my story and how it relates to all these aspects is how my audience finds me relevant. What they really want is my take or perspective, and that’s what I share with them.
However, it’s important to remember that this will only work if you add your own flavour to the trends you tap into. Everyone will be participating in the same trends, so you need to make your content stand out from the crowd by making it feel authentic to you and your personal style.
I try to stay relevant by keeping up with the latest trends but doing them in my own style, creating Reels with trending music, upgrading my content creation tools to improve the quality of my work, and networking with other creators within the industry.
I constantly try to create content that feels relatable to real life situations. I also aim to add humour into my content and follow trends while still giving it my personal touch.
#2 Never stop evolving your skills
Nothing will make your audience lose interest in your content faster than seeing the same content techniques repeated, over and over again. While it’s great to have a style, constantly upskilling your photography and videography techniques will help you stay up to date. It’s the perfect way to ensure your audience never gets bored of you and that the quality of your content never dips.
We’ve created some great resources on the Vamp Blog to keep your content creation skills up to date:
- Try these new photography techniques.
- Dive into the world of photo manipulations.
- Teach yourself how to shoot stop motions.
- Learn how to create a seamless cinemagraph.
Canva is also a great graphic design tool to use to keep your Instagram Stories looking fresh. The app is constantly updating its templates, however, you should aim to create your own to build your graphic design skills and impress your audience.
This tip also goes for learning how to use the latest social features and tools. For example, every time Instagram drops a new Reels or Stories feature, you should aim to incorporate those new tools into your content strategy. This will show your audience that you’re constantly working to produce highly relevant content.
#3 Be consistent
Most importantly, consistency is key!
Ghosting your followers is a bad idea if you want to remain relevant. When you regularly share engaging content and respond to your audience’s comments and DMs, more of your followers will see your posts, which means more people are going to keep you front of mind.
Forgetting about your audience and leaving them hanging for weeks on end will cause them to disengage with your profile and potentially even forget you’re someone they follow.
Try to make meaningful comments, messages and story replies, so that you can build a genuine connection with your audience. Remember, you can have a following but not an audience. And the way to grow an audience is by showing up authentically and making connections.
It’s also important to schedule your content and plan out exactly how many posts you want to share each week. Keep it simple and set yourself weekly and monthly goals that you know you can achieve with your workload. Learn more about how to schedule your social content.
#4 Respond to your audience’s needs
It can be easy to make creating content all about you. But in reality, it’s about your audience. They purposely follow you to receive your content in their feed, so make sure you’re creating content they actually want to see. This will help you always remain relevant in the eyes of your followers.
Have your purpose clearly stated and written down so you can always go back to it when you lose your way. It’s easy to get lost with how fast-paced the content creator life is.
Do this by simply asking your followers what they want to see from you. Using Instagram’s Question sticker or TikTok’s Q&A feature is a great way to do this.
You can also use your comments and DMs to help you come up with new content ideas. Not only will this help boost your engagement, it’s going to keep your content front of mind with your audience because they know they’re actually going to learn something new from you, every time they scroll through their feed.
#5 Don’t lose touch with yourself
There’s never any value in pretending to be someone you’re not. And in today’s current climate – with social users and brands cracking down on creators who photoshop, use face altering filters, and edit their photos to the extreme – being your whole, true self is the best possible way to remain relevant in the eyes of the modern social user.
Be you and be true. There’s always going to be a more stylish, talented, or charismatic creator out there, but there's only one you. Be unapologetically you and your relevance will increase for both your followers and potential brand partners.