Bryan the Diamond
Everyone I’ve worked with, they love me - obviously!
You make them money, they love you.
Bryan the Diamond has built a lucrative business through a single principle:
Not taking people for granted.
As a result, his fanbase continues to grow across platforms, while his brand partners often get more than their money’s worth.
That’s the best way to build a lasting business.
YouTube is paying us. Snapchat is paying us…they all started to pay.
And then TikTok was like, “We're gonna pay.”
So all of my friends that are on the Creativity Program absolutely love it.
Bryan built his primary audience on TikTok, but was frustrated with the pennies their Creator Fund used to pay - not because of the money itself, but because it felt like the platform was taking him and other Creators for granted.
TikTok is such a big platform, and I was like, “I know you're making money.”
And the Creator Fund was not showing us the “Yeah, we’re making money, here’s money.”
That’s all changed since they launched their Creativity Program.
TikTok’s Creativity Program pays you like if you're on YouTube…
They went from being a gigantic app that was not paying much to actually listening to what we were saying.
In many ways, Creator Economy platforms’ and products’ Creator communities are their fandoms.
Just as Creators need to listen and respond to their fans for the sake of longevity, Creator Economy companies need to do the same for their Creators - or risk going the way of Vine (RIP).
The Creativity Program may still be in Beta, but qualifying Creators should be able to sign up in the TikTok app (instructions here).
Bryan’s other two revenue streams - brand deals and affiliates - are interesting because they’re tied together.
His affiliate revenue looks low, but that’s artificial:
The reason I don't get much from affiliate is because a lot of brands that work with me, they know my worth and they don't want me on an affiliate link because they don't want to pay that [upside].
Bryan has done so well for his brand partners that they’d rather pay a high flat fee than risk paying significantly more for the sales he will drive. For example:
I did one partnership that was associated with an affiliate link. I'm not saying numbers, but I ended up making triple on the affiliate link than what they paid me flat rate.
Bryan’s manager, Mikayla D’Agostino from My People Know, had some insight on this:
Commission works better for smaller Creators because they can ballpark how much conversion they expect, but when you have someone who's at the mega scale, the problem is, “Oh crap, he sold 15,000 units! What are we going to do now, we promised him $5 per unit….”
Where does this selling power come from?
Bryan only works with brands he uses and likes, so his fans know his endorsements are real:
If you send me a product and it's shit, I don't care how much you're offering me - you can literally offer me a million dollar deal - it's no. I'm not doing it. I'm not selling what I don't like.
He negotiates discount codes for his fans into his partnership deals, to make his partners’ products more appealing and accessible to fans:
I want them to get a discount. There’s been times where I've taken a small little hit out of my brand deal for that, just because I really want my audience to know that the Besties are appreciated.
Bryan has a deep relationship with his fans, showing respect for each and every viewer - and that’s maybe the most important insight of all:
When I meet them in person, even if I'm having the worst day of my fucking life, I treat them exactly like the one in a million person that they are - because they don't have to like me. They don't have to take the time to talk to me. They don't have to take the time to even engage with me…
And they are.
I think it's very important to never lose sight of the people who bring you to where you are as a content creator.
You did not do this on your own.
I used to use other platforms because at the start, there was a negative association with Linktree and with would sometimes get blocked [by TikTok], but now…they’ve partnered with TikTok and offer a bunch of unique features and customization.
I just bought something off of Amazon and I made a video about it. Honestly, I didn't even really know about the whole affiliate thing.
Then my manager was like, “You're selling this litter box out. You should have an affiliate link.”
So I created an affiliate link and then it sold out. It kept selling out. I bet you if I go on there now, it still sells out.
Project Management - Calendar App
Banking - JP Morgan Chase
I don't carry around my debit card. I'm a credit card freak. I love points. I love making money. So I will spend money and make money.
Accounting - Does own + accountant through Chase
Communication - 2nd Phone
Ever since I started doing TikTok and social media in general, my number was getting leaked like candy.
So I have one number that I keep with just family, friends, and Mikayla - and when I say friends, I'm not talking like friends I just met, I mean like, for you to get my personal, we have to be friends for years.
And then I have my work number, which I'll give out. That's where I have a lot of my influencers through, and a lot of my influencers typically have that too, because they don't really wanna change their number a lot.
I don't like the whole two phones thing...It's a lot of work.
Video Production - iPhone + CapCut
I'm a deals queen, I don't like spending money, and they have great editing and it's free.
I know this sounds like a brand deal, I wish it was, but they have great editing and it's free. And at the end of the video…it used to show CapCut, and now you can just tap and delete it.
It's amazing. Like, I love using CapCut.
Content Distribution - Native posting on a schedule
I have a schedule, but I don't have a post scheduling tool. It's a schedule that I've created throughout the three years of posting content.
We just handpicked times that I've used that work for me, and we will look to make sure that my audience is seeing it.
If my audience is not seeing it at a certain time, then we'll scrap that time and we'll go back to the drawing board.
So typically this is something that we revisit every three to six months.
Representation - Mikayla D’Agostino @ My People Know
Bryan left his manager of several years, bounced around a few other managers, then recently landed with Mikayla and My People Know.
Some managers…they're managing a thousand Creators. Like, how are you managing a thousand Creators with just you and everyone's happy? That’s not making any sense.
So I think that's why I pivoted to Mikayla, because Mikayla’s roster is a lot smaller and she has a lot more time for me, and I need more time because this is something I'm doing for the rest of my life.
He’s very happy so far, and after having “been around the block”, Bryan has 3 pieces of advice for Creators evaluating management:
Don’t sign a contract without a trial period.
They're gonna make it sound like all that and a bag of chips the first week, and then they're gonna be very hard to reach and you're gonna feel left out - and now you're locked into a six months to a year contract.
Run the other way if they’re selling you a dream without substance.
I've gotten on the phone with managers who said, “I'm gonna make you millions of dollars this year,” and I believed it.
Two months later, I was making myself more money than they were.
Make sure you can make your own money.
I have my past brand connections. Everyone that I've worked with, they love me - obviously! You make the money they love you.
So I have my past partnerships that will always come back to me, and then Mikayla will facilitate new things.
My mission is to enable a million people to find freedom in the Creator Economy.
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