Creator Spotlight

10 Inspiring Creator Educators To Follow in 2023

by Nicholas Bouchard · Updated Mar 28, 2024

When you hear the term “creator educator,” what comes to mind? While “educator” might sound like the title of someone running stuffy university lectures, the truth is that creator educators are anything but boring. Tons of creator educators are delivering exciting content, building huge audiences online, and making serious bank, all while teaching their following a thing or two. In fact, today, creator educators are poised to take over the creator economy.

Want a slice of the pie? If you’re interested in becoming a creator educator, read on to learn all about it, and to receive tips, tricks, and advice from 10 of the most inspiring creator educators of the moment.

What is a creator educator?

So, what is a creator educator? A creator educator is someone who creates and publishes educational content online, using their expertise and knowledge to teach others new information and skills. Creator educators use their unique perspective and experience to educate as well as entertain their audience.

According to creator Jay Clouse, there are two types of creators: creator entertainers and creator educators. The former create content with the purpose of entertaining their followers — think of TikTok superstars like Charli D’Amelio or Khaby Lame who rose to fame for their dance moves and funny videos. Creator educators, on the other hand, aren’t only creating content to entertain their audience. Their goal is to teach their followers something new, while making the learning process fun and engaging.

Creator educators have been around since the early days of YouTube: think guitarists teaching you how to play “Wonderwall,” or gamers sharing weird tricks for fixing your Xbox. However, it’s only been more recently that this kind of educational content has started gaining major traction online. This is especially true on TikTok, which has emerged as an unexpected tool for teaching and learning, allowing creator educators to monetize their audience and make some real income.

And, speaking of: read on to learn more about 10 inspiring creator educators who are earning a serious living for themselves online.

The top 10 creator educators to follow

1. Ali Abdaal

Ali Abdaal is a former doctor who used to create content to help medical school students ace their studies and crush their final exams. Today, his mission is to share evidence-based strategies that supercharge his audience’s productivity. Whether he’s sharing the books he’s reading or showing the tools he’s using, Abdaal’s content is all about finding your passion, building your dream career, and getting more done. How’s that for some serious motivation?

Best advice for creators

Abdaal takes a casual approach to education — and he thinks other creators should do the same.

“I think education is too big a word. Something about the word ‘education’ feels like there’s a high-browness to it,” he told Danny Lowney. “I prefer to think of it as sharing: sharing the things that have worked for me that might work for you. I think that’s how creators in any sphere can think of education.”

Taking a more informal and unpretentious approach to teaching makes your content more fun, engaging, and accessible to a wider audience, and it also takes some of the pressure off of yourself as a creator. It’s a win-win!

Income streams

Altogether, Abdaal’s income streams generated $4.6 million in 2022.

  1. YouTube AdSense
  2. Affiliate programs
  3. Brand partnerships (YouTube, Instagram, and TikTok)
  4. Podcast (AdSense and brand sponsorships)
  5. Email newsletter (Brand sponsorships)
  6. Merch
  7. Digital products
  8. Online courses

2. Andrea Casanova

@latinapreneur

Start with what you have💡 #contentcreatortips #contentproductiontips Keywords: Tips for aspiring content creators Tips for UGC creators How to start making content

♬ original sound – Andrea Casanova

Andrea Casanova is a content creator, coach, consultant, public speaker, and a self-described “latinapreneur.” A specialist in marketing and content strategy, she strives to help her followers build and hone their personal brands, all while leveling up their marketing skills.

In addition to creating TikTok videos for over 201,000 followers, Casanova offers creators and businesses a host of online coaching programs, including 1:1 sessions and a hugely popular invite-only container. If that’s not enough, she also hosts Ella Es Too Much, a weekly podcast on all things entrepreneurship, personal development, and wellness.

Best advice for creators

Sure, being a creator educator is all about education. But that doesn’t mean it ever has to be boring. “You need to entertain. Even if you have educational-focused content, you still need to find a way to make that compelling,” Andrea said on TikTok. “That’s why skits are so powerful because you’re literally telling a story. You’re having two different characters. One’s portraying the one that’s trying to understand what you’re trying to teach, and the other one’s explaining it.”

Income streams

  1. Coaching
  2. Consulting
  3. Podcast
  4. Brand partnerships (TikTok and Instagram)

3. David Suh

@davidsuh

Who’s going to duet and pose with me? 👀 #learnontiktok #howtopose #posingideas

♬ Kill Bill – SZA

David Suh is a portrait photographer and creator with a mission to help everyone unlock their photogenic self. Through TikTok, he shares everything from posing tips to photography techniques, as well as giving his audience a behind-the-scenes look at recent photoshoots. Once just a photographer, but now also a creator educator (and posing coach!), Suh is a great example of a creator who has flipped a service-based career into multiple streams of revenue.

Best advice for creators

Suh is an advocate for authenticity when it comes to being a creator. That means sharing more than just your best work. While perfectionism looks good on paper, it’s often the raw, real-life content and happy accidents that drive audience engagement, start conversations, and convert viewers into true fans.

He told the Washington Post: “How does [just posting your best work] become social? You wouldn’t just meet someone at a bar and take out your portfolio and say, ‘Hey, look at this. Can you like this?’ It’s always about the conversation. How am I helping this other person?”

Income streams

  1. Photography
  2. Online courses
  3. Brand partnerships (TikTok and Instagram)
  4. YouTube AdSense
  5. Merch

4. Tori Dunlap

@herfirst100k

having money means having choices — to be in situations you choose to be in, rather than situations you’re forced to be in. and that’s the feeling I want for every woman. #financialfeminist #financetok #debtfree #financialeducation

♬ original sound – Tori Dunlap — Money Expert 💸

Tori Dunlap’s mission is to help women smash the patriarchy — while making bank in the process. After saving her first $100,000 by 25 and quitting her marketing job, Dunlap started sharing her financial know-how with a focus on giving women the financial freedom they need to fight for their rights and achieve their dreams.

Since then, Dunlap has published a New York Times best-selling financial guidebook, created her own business podcast, and partnered with Treasury on a platform that educates women about investing.

Best advice for creators

As a burgeoning creator, it’s easy to dream up all of the products you can create and sell. But don’t put your cart before the horse, Dunlap warns.

“A lot of people approach business by launching a product with hopes of building a community around it. But that rarely works,” she told Business Insider. “Instead, you need to provide a ton of value for people, get people’s trust, and then sell them when they’re already on board. Creating a brand online or through social media is a low-cost route to building that crucial community.”

Income streams

In total, these income streams helped Dunlap generate $4 million in 2022.

  1. Podcast
  2. Published book
  3. Online courses
  4. Digital products
  5. Brand partnerships (TikTok and Instagram)

5. Otis Jones

Otis Jones teaches American Sign Language (ASL) to a TikTok following of 651,000 and counting. Leveraging the power of TikTok and his massive audience, he hopes to make ASL more ubiquitous among the hearing, as well as contribute to the well-being of the deaf community.

While the topic of his videos remains constant, Jones experiments with form to keep viewers and learners engaged and entertained. In some videos, he covers simple ASL vocabulary words, while in others he might be signing along to rap lyrics. In addition to offering mini ASL lessons through his TikTok, he has also partnered with companies like Coca-Cola and Marvel on the platform.

Best advice for creators

Jones is the perfect example of a creator who uses his platform to do good. Being a creator educator is a special career path because it allows individuals to make a living, all while changing the world by dedicating their content and mobilizing their audience for a good cause.

Income streams

  1. Brand partnerships
  2. Online courses

6. Kat Norton

@miss.excel

Remember this 🔥 tip for the next time you need to pull unique values! #exceltips #learnexcel

♬ Gas Pedal – Sage The Gemini

Kat Norton, also known as Miss Excel, has built a career — and a serious TikTok following — from what might be one of the least sexy topics ever: Microsoft Excel. Despite the odds, and thanks to her snappy delivery, her entertaining skits, and even her impressive dance skills, she makes it work!

In addition to her wildly successful social media content, Norton offers full-fledged courses on Excel, as well as other Microsoft programs and Google Sheets, which promise to turn anyone into a productivity master. Though she only started posting on TikTok in 2020, within a few years’ time, she’s managed to grow her creator business to earning over $2 million a year.

Best advice for creators

Positive thinking is a powerful thing. Before she was Miss Excel, Norton had all the same doubts that plague fledgling creators: self-doubt, imposter syndrome, you name it! The key, however, is to believe in yourself, to clear away those doubts so you can see — and embark on — the journey ahead. 

“I realized my limiting beliefs, that little voice inside my head, was telling me that you can’t dance on TikTok, you can’t have your own business, and entrepreneurship is hard,” Norton said in an interview with Microsoft. “All of these ideas were conditioned in me, but I essentially went in and did the work internally and cleared them out. I literally visualized the Excel screen above my head before I even created Miss Excel.”

Income streams

  1. Online courses
  2. Brand partnerships (TikTok and Instagram)

7. Taylor Loren

@taylor_loren_

top Instagram & TikTok trends for 2023!! agree or disagree? 👀 #tiktokmarketing #instagrammarketing

♬ original sound – taylor loren

Taylor Loren is a creator and freelance marketer who helps her following learn the ins and outs of social media marketing. She also helps companies hammer out their branding, work out their content strategy, and make the most of their influencer marketing initiatives.

As a creator, Loren has partnered with massive brands including Meta and Adobe. And in 2021, she launched The Reels Course, an online course that has helped hundreds of creators grow on Instagram.

Best advice for creators

In the last few years, social media platforms — especially TikTok — have hugely accelerated trend cycles in not just fashion, but in music, food and drink, and even humor. As a creator (and also as a viewer!), it can sometimes feel impossible to keep up. If TikTok’s trend cycles are making your head spin, Loren offers an encouraging word of advice.

“The biggest trend [for 2023] is that trends, as we know them, are dead,” she told her TikTok following. “This year will be less about jumping on the latest trending sound, and more about how you can use storytelling through video. I would think of TikTok and Reels as a miniature version of YouTube than just this trend machine.”

Income streams

  1. Digital products
  2. Online courses
  3. Brand partnerships (TikTok and Instagram)
  4. Consulting

8. Matt D’Avella

Matt D’Avella is a filmmaker and YouTuber who initially built his following from videos and documentaries about the minimalist lifestyle. Since then, he has expanded the scope of his content and business. Today, in addition to creating videos that touch on wide-ranging topics like productivity, finances, and habit-building (and even making a Netflix documentary or two!), D’Avella also offers online courses on self-development, creativity, and everything in between.

Best advice for creators

Pursuing a career as a creator can be tough. With all the pressure to strive for more (followers, engagement, revenue, you name it), it can be easy to forget why you set off on this journey in the first place. D’Avella’s advice is to always center your passion — and to never take your work for granted.

“If you can make a full-time living doing the thing that you find so much fulfillment from, the thing that you’re passionate about, that’s a win. I think, truly, that should be the end goal for everybody,” he told his YouTube followers.

Income streams

  1. YouTube AdSense
  2. Brand partnerships
  3. Filmmaking
  4. Online courses

9. Shogo

Shogo’s passion? Sharing the history, culture, and taboos of his native Japan. His videos dive into everything from the warrior code of the samurai to contemporary Japanese street food, and even the cultural taboos around gift-giving. But content creation is just part of what Shogo is known for. Beyond the web, he dreams of revitalizing traditional Japanese culture, and even collaborates with its IRL stewards throughout Japan.

Best advice for creators

Creators can learn a thing or two about passion and drive from Shogo. The Japanese creator has one steadfast mission — and it drives everything he creates.

“I am determined to dedicate my life to making Japan a better place for future generations to enjoy Japanese history, culture, and land. I will try my best to solve social problems, preserve and evolve traditional culture, and help out younger generations so they can have a brighter future,” he said on YouTube.

To stay motivated, it might be helpful to distill your goals as a creator into one all-encompassing mission, which you can come back to whenever you need guidance — or just a little push!

Income streams

  1. YouTube AdSense
  2. Affiliate programs
  3. YouTube channel memberships
  4. Fan donations
  5. Touristic experiences

10. Jay Clouse

Jay Clouse is the creator educator behind the platform Creator Science and the podcast of the same name. He is all about helping creators turn their craft into a science, distilling insights from his and other creators’ experiences into sound advice for beginners and veterans, alike. Whether you’re trying to boost your revenue or just figure out your niche, Clouse and his content are your North Star.

Best advice for creators

Rather than diving into becoming a full-time creator right away, Clouse suggests dipping a toe into the creator pond, part-time, to start.

“It’s actually really good for people who are employed to start down the creator route, because they don’t have to put financial pressure on their content business,” he told The Leap. “They’re able to make the right long-term decisions, and not worry about the timeline of earning revenue from it.”

Income streams

These income streams generated $338,000 for Clouse in 2022.

  1. Memberships
  2. Brand partnerships
  3. Coaching
  4. Consulting
  5. Royalties
  6. Digital Products
  7. Affiliates
  8. Fan donations

Get inspired and create!

As a creator, you can find an audience no matter what your niche is. Whether content creation is your main gig, a full-fledged business, or a side hustle, know that there are creators out there who have paved the way: who have experienced the ups and downs, put in the hard work, made their own mistakes, and have ended up reaping the massive rewards of becoming a creator educator.

So, follow along, take their advice, and draw inspiration from their stories. You don’t have to journey alone! With a little bit of inspiration and encouragement, you’ll hit the ground running. And you’ll see just how much you can accomplish in 2023.

Want practical tips for earning money online? Download our free guide on 12 ways to make your first $100 online to learn from real-life creators.

@the.leap

Hot of the press 🗞️ our NEW free guide! You’ll learn the top 12 ways to earn money online, and meet real-life creators who are succeeding in each method. Click the link in our bio to download now! #creatoreconomy #freeguide #contentcreation #creatoreducators #contencreator

♬ Boy’s a liar Pt. 2 – PinkPantheress & Ice Spice

Photos: Courtesy of Andrea Casanova

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Further reading

Nicholas Bouchard
About the author

Nicholas Bouchard

Nick Bouchard is a content writer and marketer with a passion for creation. His hobbies range from writing fiction to wrestling. He can only be photographed in national parks and on mountains, and pictures of him usually come out blurry. Some wonder if he even exists at all.
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