The world we live in today is interconnected and interactive; and our interactions as well as the ways we connect are getting more and more diverse. It has led to richer conversations, unique formats and collaborations, new ways of storytelling and entertaining. It has built a culture and economy that is focused on the creative process and output.
The internet and social media platforms like Instagram have played a significant role in this, helping bypass a lot of established gatekeepers, especially in music, art and performance. We are seeing content and creativity rising to the top, anchored by technology but driven by a community formed online and on social platforms.
For Meta, this is an exciting time. In MENA alone, more than 300 million people use Meta’s platforms to connect and create. “We have the privilege of being a part of the platforms that are witnessing the rise of a new wave of artists, musicians, performers and sector experts. We are seeing creators explore new frontiers through the use of AR and VR, experimenting with new formats and tools, finding new ways to monetise their work and tasting freedom in shaping their own brands,” stated Moon Baz, Creator Partnerships Lead Middle East, Africa & Turkey, META.
Moon Baz, Creator Partnerships Lead Middle East, Africa & Turkey, META.
They are setting the course for a new group of talent – the ones who will define a new generation through their use of technology and tools as Web 3.0 rewrites the rules of creativity. Meta has been at the fore-front of enabling this new group of creators through programmes such as Creators of Tomorrow - a showcase of emerging creators around the world who are inspiring a new movement of creative content online.
As these new talents take centrestage, the team at Meta have identified the trends that are driving their success and those that will play a role in their onward course.
More ways to monetise: Creators are using Meta platforms to earn money in a number of ways, such as through subscriptions, revenue share and partnerships with brands. Meta platforms, just like others, will continue to prioritize ways for creators to make money — whether that’s through enhanced ad opportunities, or the creation of digital collectables. As they gain a higher degree of autonomy and independence over their work, developments in Web 3.0 networks based on blockchain and open data networks will give them ownership of their content, and the freedom to distribute it even more freely across different platforms. The future could see creators cashing in on their content where they choose, at the price they set, without the need for an intermediary.
Personalizing their brand: Advertisers are drawn to creators for their ability to authentically tell stories and engage audiences. Platforms like Meta support these relationships through branded content partnerships, such as the Brand Collaborations tool, and often broker relationships that allow creators and businesses alike to find synergies in their storytelling.
For instance, in Egypt, we’ve spotlighted a number of content creators who were able to build their own brands from scratch. Hadia Ghaleb, a fashion content creator, just launched her independent swimwear line, and Nourane Owais, a talented graphic designer, kicked off her own business on Instagram and turned her passion for art into a living. In the future, we will see creators actively co-creating with existing brands. New tools and the emergence of Web 3.0 will increasingly empower them to build their own small businesses from scratch — whether that’s fashion brands, written work, filters or otherwise. Underpinning this is the rise of tools and infrastructure that allow creator-entrepreneurs to build small enterprises more easily.
Experimenting with new formats: Even as short-form video continues to rise in popularity, we are seeing creators look further afield and explore new forms of expression through augmented reality (AR). Already, over 700 million people use AR for connection, expression and commerce every month. The majority of these experiences are built by our creators.
Innovation in formats will continue to flourish. Tools including AI creation of human likenesses, GPT-3-type text and image generators, powerful and easy-to-use 3D production software, and interaction/simulation engines like Unity, are all emerging. These methods will give new ways for people to develop engaging content like we’ve never seen before. The evolution of such tools may give rise to creators who are more directors of AI content generation than simply makers of content.
Creative Collaborations: Platforms such as Roblox, Fortnite or even Meta’s own Crayta are acting as waypoints for creators to create and participate in the building of different immersive worlds. These developments may lay the groundwork for the growth of a more collaborative creator input into the metaverse — which looks to be dominated by immersive environments and 3D creation. In Egypt, gaming creators are amongst the biggest creators in the platform, such as Tarboun, 3mr, Saadola and along with various promising female creators in the region, like JoJo Gaming , Assoula or With Noura.
Rather than publish work independently, the continued rise in collaboration could see creators build entire digital worlds together, and see them leveraging the direct, global sales of their created assets for financial opportunities.
As part of Meta’s commitment to support creators across the globe, Instagram and Facebook recently hosted their first Creators Day in Egypt to connect with and celebrate leading social media talents and beloved content creators in the country. The event included informative sessions that spanned Instagram and Facebook best practices; Reels crash courses; and an introduction to the metaverse. The event saw the attendance of 100 creators including Khaled Mokhtar, Cris Elmasry, Tasneem Elaidy, Ramy Soliman, Dana Hamdan, Noha El Sherbiny and Ahmed Rafat, alongside the regional Meta team.
Nada Enan, Head of Communications, MEA, Instagram
“Creativity and community is at the heart of everything we do, and we are proud to be the home of so many talented creatives from the Middle East, who are setting new standards and pushing the culture forward. For us, it is imperative to continue to present more springboards, such as Creators of Tomorrow and the recently concluded Creators Day in Egypt, for creators to launch new collaborations, find new creative directions and explore new tools. With Creators of Tomorrow, 12 talents from around the MENA region now have unprecedented insight into the future of the sector, giving the tools to be the drivers of the next chapter of the creator economy,” said Nada Enan, Head of Communications, MEA, Instagram