Holidays Are Creators’ Most Lucrative Time Of Year: Adobe Study

Adobe’s Future of Creativity study aims to understand how creativity is changing around the world, speaking directly with those at the forefront of online creativity


Adobe released new data and insights from the latest instalment of Adobe’s “Future of Creativity” series, focusing on the holiday season’s monetisation opportunities for non-professional creators. Adobe’s findings provide an in-depth look at how non-professional creators are evolving their content strategies to drive growth during this holiday season, boosting their income by partnering with brands, working with other creators, and increasing their creative output. 

“Creators are at the forefront of driving trends during the holidays, evolving how they engage with their audiences and create new opportunities,” said Ashley Still, senior vice president, of digital media marketing, strategy & global partnerships at Adobe. “We are committed to fueling opportunities for creators to bring their stories to life and express themselves by providing powerful, easy-to-use Adobe creative tools including Adobe Express, making it simple and fun for everyone to express their holiday spirit with seasonal templates – and much more,” he added.  

During the 2022 holiday season, creators are creating more, engaging more frequently with audiences and brands, and monetizing more content. Some of the study’s top findings include: 

Nearly three-quarters of monetizers (73%) indicated that the holidays are their most lucrative time of the year. 

On average, monetizers report that holiday revenue represents just over one-third (34%) of their annual creative income. 

Among creators who have been monetizing their work for a year or more, 51% anticipate significant growth in 2022 income over 2021, while 26% say they will earn at least 50% more year-over-year. 

Over 8 in 10 (86%) monetizers will earn income this holiday season through selling directly to consumers, and almost two-thirds (63%) will earn income via promotional revenue. 

Despite uncertainty regarding social media platforms and the economic environment, 88% of creators expect to grow their audience this season, and nearly half (49%) named building brand awareness as a goal. Nearly half (47%) of creators, who have monetized for a year or more, expect to post content at least once a day, and 59% say they have increased their posting frequency since last year. 

Brand Partnerships Offer Monetization Opportunities 

Brand partnerships are key to making money, but creators are selective with whom they collaborate with. 

71% of monetizers are partnering with brands this holiday season, and over one-third (36%) of brand-partnered monetizers say their creative income represents half or more of their total income.

75% of monetizers say a brand’s values are more important than its size and 

influence; 74% say they’d rather partner with other creators than large brands. 

Half of the monetizers who partner with five or more brands plan to proactively seek new brand partnerships, while most expect to increase the frequency of audience engagement (53%), create more video content (60%), create new types of content (61%), and create more content (66%). 

Macroeconomic Environment Drives New Strategies 

As is the case in other industries, creators are aware of the uncertain macroeconomic environment, and nearly one-third (32%) of monetizers say they’re proactively shifting their strategies to engage with their audiences. 

Of those who have changed their content and/or business strategies, 63% say they’re creating more content, 60% are creating new types of content, and 49% are engaging with their audiences more often. 

On average, monetizers will create and post four different types of content formats this holiday season including photography (70%), videos (61%), art/graphics (47%), and memes (31%). 

Monetizers’ most popular platforms for posting creative or social media content include Facebook (70%), Instagram (65%), and YouTube (57%), with TikTok more regularly used by Gen Z monetizers (60%) than with Millennial (47%) or Gen X (42%) monetizers. 

The Future of Creativity Study also found that the vast majority (81%) of monetizers use apps, software, and digital tools to create their content – and of that group, 87% use Adobe products. Adobe Creative Cloud and Adobe Express – the leading all-in-one tool for creating social graphics, flyers, logos, and videos – empower individuals, solopreneurs, social influencers, small business owners, and enterprises around the world to tell their stories, enabling anyone to create professional-quality content with unprecedented speed and ease. 

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