Casey Neistat discussed on the H3H3 podcast how much money he makes as a creator.

While he doesn't disclose any numbers, he gives away an insightful view on how a creator like him approaches moneymaking and brand deals.

ROI of working with a creator

People don't usually understand how much money creators can make from brand deals.

The amount depends on the creator’s size and the type of advertising that the brand wants. In today's creator economy, it's not weird to talk about 5 figure deals as the normal.

But how does that makes sense for a brand?

Casey gives a great example with TV ads.

A brand spends hundreds of thousands of dollars on advertising on a timeout during an NBA game on TV.

But, what's people's answer to that? They draw their phones and stop paying attention.

Example 1: pay money, get no attention

At the same time, if said brand books a 90-sec ad segment with H3, things change.

On the one side, people will be actively listening since it's video they choose to consume and, second, the advocacy comes from a friendly face who they are used to listen.

Example 2: less money but more attention.


How does a good brand deal look like? NordVPNs example

Casey works regularly with NordVPN. A VPN is a very difficult product to communicate because its way of work might be hard to understand.

So, how do you explain its value?

Certainly not with a banner, or a TV ad.

What Casey does is explaining how he uses it.

Like really explaining it because he uses what he endorses.

On his most recent trip to Mexico (before corona) he took the chance on the middle of the video to give a clear example on how to use a VPN on a foreign country.

A common collab: Casey x Nord VPN

How much money does Casey make?

To work with Casey on a dedicated brand deal video, you would have to pay him around six figures.

He has also participated in brand deals that costed above 1M$ to produce, like his Samsung collaboration. He clarifies that he only got this kind of chance a couple of times though.

Clean transactions like 2k$ to talk about "these shoes" or "that mobile phone" are not that common. There's normally something more complex going on behind brand deals with creators.

Casey typically says no to one-shot deals and when he doesn't believe in the product.

A laptop company came to him and asked to do a tech review and endorse the product. The money was enough to "pay for his kids’ college."

He said NO.

Another example was when an electric car company came to him with a great deal.

He said NO.

Again.

If you know Casey you know he loves his Tesla, so he didn't believe in what he would be advertising.

Leaving money on the table

At a glance, it seems that Casey has left a LOT of money on the table, but thinking like that is short-sided.

It might be true that you can make bank on the short term, but on the long run, it will devalue your brand.

You will be seen as the creator that advertises anything for money.

A mercenary.

Learnings


Here's a short checklist for creators and brands I put together with the main insights from this article:

Stay authentic!