Inside The Forbes Highest-Earning Creators List Of 2023

Creators. Influencers. Streamers. Vloggers. Whatever you call them, these powerful social media personalities are calling the shots in entertainment and advertising.

This year, the 50 honorees on our second annual Forbes Top Creator list harnessed their combined 2.6 billion followers to haul in an estimated $700 million in earnings. That’s up more than 20% from 2022’s $570 million score. They’re not alone, in 2023 brands will spend an estimated $21 billion on creator marketing, up from just $1.6 billion seven years ago, according to the social media research firm, Influencer Marketing Hub.

Our 50 top creators are using their reach and influence to vault from your phone screen to the mainstream. Comedian Matt Rife is selling out stadiums across the country. TikTok stars Addison Rae and Bella Porch have gone from lip-syncing to record deals. Meanwhile, Khaby Lame, the most followed TikToker on the planet, is now a character in the smash-hit video game franchise, Fortnite.

“Influencers are more trusted by their audiences than ads. They can sell out products in minutes. They can cause a flash mob that shuts down a major city,” says Erin Lanuti, the chief innovation officer at ad titan Omnicom Group. “They can build a billion-dollar brand without any other marketing. And they can destroy a billion-dollar brand with a post.”

To rank the world’s Top Creators, Forbes crunched data on the earnings, follower counts, engagement rates, and entrepreneurial activities of thousands of internet personalities with the help of the creator marketing firm, Influential.

The result: The fifty people tapping their massive fan bases to reshape the worlds of media, marketing, entertainment, and taste.

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