The Breakdown: Content Creators vs Influencers

What exactly makes a content creator and what makes an influencer? Can you be both at the same time? Which one should my brand hire for an activation? What are the requirements for each?

Kayla Mueller
min read
The Breakdown: Content Creators vs Influencers
Table of contents:

What exactly makes a content creator and what makes an influencer? Can you be both at the same time? Which one should my brand hire for an activation? What are the requirements for each?

Our community of creators range from expert content creators to a variety of talented influencers. People toss around the terms often, but let’s dive into what it really means to be a content creator compared to an influencer. While they have their differences, there are significant commonalities.

Content creators generally are:

  • Highly skilled and experienced photographers, video editors, writers, graphic designers, or videographers who develop assets intended to be shared with brands for advertising purposes
  • A great go-to for sourcing content for your social, website, emails, print, etc. without paying the price of influence (followers, impressions and engagements).
  • Often evaluated, rather than by the size of their social handles, but by the quality of their deliverables, the creativity invested in their projects as well as their ability to develop unique multimedia assets
  • Extremely well-versed in all social specs and best practices across social platforms

Recommended Reading: Social Media Content Creation: Best Practices & Tools to Raise Engagement

Influencers generally are:

  • Utilized to leverage their dedicated audience to build brand awareness and trust.
  • Creators who have an engaged audience that is invested in their content and advice.
  • Mostly evaluated by the size of their following along with their engagement rates. There are a multitude of categories of influencers that can drive impact on your campaign, it truly depends on brand needs and resources.
  • Often niche, for example, they may specialize in travel content, mommy-blogger lifestyle content, doggo content, you get where I’m going here. Their followers are often extremely engaged as they are experts within a specific field.


Recommended Reading: What Is a Micro-Influencer? 7 Benefits They Offer Your Brand (+ Examples)


  • Are innate storytellers that are vital to the ecosystem of advertising, especially in the digital sphere
  • Thrive at the intersection of business and creativity. As much as creativity is at the core of their work, they must also navigate the opportunities with a business-like mindset, and also maybe some of the more logistical pieces such as contracts, negotiations, etc. (psttt that’s why we are here--- to seamlessly integrate an efficient workflow for not only brands but influencers and creators alike)
  • Can create static images, videos, animations, cinemagraphs, gifs, etc.
  • Are well-versed in creating product content (think overhead product shot or flatlay) as well as lifestyle content (think of UGC content including people showing the product in use)
  • Frequently have a unique style or aesthetic and may specialize in a specific industry or product category but are frequently well-versed in creating content for a variety of brands and products in different industries
  • Are employed for brand projects to create assets

In summary, although there are specific distinctions there are many things that content creators and influencers have in common. The main difference does not necessarily lie in who they are or what they do, but rather how brands decide to engage with them. At From Popular Pays, we pay high respect to both categories and are humbled to be a part of the ever-changing landscape.

Kayla Mueller
Kayla loves creating innovative campaigns for brands. She loves yoga, capturing life's moments through her lens and exploring.

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