How much content is too much content?

Cassie Widders
5 min readNov 24, 2022

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Content is king — that’s the phrase we’ve all heard over and over again right? We’re now in the age of The Creator Economy, where people create things and make money directly from their own audience that they have built.

And just to show you not how profitable The Creator Economy is, because we know it’s hugely profitable, but how much it has changed the very fabric of our society, HubSpot’s 2022 State of Consumer Trends report found that the creator economy is rapidly growing in popularity — 30% of the surveyed 18 to 24-year-olds and 40% of 25 to 34-year-olds consider themselves content creators.

Young people in the US are 3x more likely to say they want to be an influencer or creator as opposed to an astronaut.

And SignalFire believes that 50 million people will soon consider themselves to be creators.

And just to be clear, if you create content of any kind, whether that’s to market your business or as you write your article, you are a creator.

So there is no denying that talking about content, and thinking about the future of work from the perspective of creators is hugely important.

So what do we think about this?

On the one hand, I’m excited at the prospects, especially for young people because what we have now with the online world is only the tip of the iceberg.

It’s an opportunity to break away from the traditional work environment that was created over a hundred years ago and is still not as flexible as it should be to cater to everyone. It’s an opportunity to do something that lights you up, on your terms. The ability to take control of your career, your income, and your happiness really, instead of relying on privilege, connections, or whether or not you end up in a supportive company or a crappy one, or with a boss who nurtures you or has taken a dislike to you.

You get to decide. You get to make the rules.

The ability to be multi-passionate and get income from various places will lead to resiliency, creativity, innovation, and strength. I’m not saying it’s all rainbows and sunshine, but there are some beautiful opportunities here. Not to mention your general well-being from being creative.

But on the other hand, alongside these opportunities, I also worry. I worry about the creator and what visibility online does to you and the pressure to keep up. I worry about the shift to what we call The Attention Economy, where our attention is what is being sold. I worry about us, the audience.

It’s a beautiful thing to create, but is it a beautiful thing to consume?

Do we have a moral or ethical responsibility to think of our audience and not just what we’re putting out in the world, but how much?

Content can be amazing, it can be educational, inspirational, motivational, and entertaining. But we can’t deny we live in a world of content overwhelm. So do creators have a duty to take that into consideration and post less?

Should creators take into consideration that while they may be pursuing their passion or creativity or dream career, that comes at the expense of their audience? Because the ultimate outcome of a successful content strategy is to have people on their screens continuously consuming their content. Do creators have a responsibility to think about that in their pursuit of their goals? And I by no means am excluding myself from this conversation as a creator, just to be clear.

As always, this topic doesn’t have a straightforward answer. It’s nuanced and I can see both sides of the debate. But it’s worth consideration and it’s worth talking about.

We’ve all heard of quality over quantity when it comes to content. But 95% of the time, algorithms do not reward quality over quantity. So again I go back to how much content is too much content? Where does your ethical responsibility come into it when you think about your own brand, and what you’re asking of your audience?

The answer I’ve had from the many people who have kindly let me rant about this is if it’s valuable content, then you’re doing them a service by providing it. And in theory, I think that’s true. The in theory bit coming into it because what’s valuable is very subjective, but let’s leave that argument and go with the notion of adding value = providing a service. That service is joy, inspiration, education, or something similar.

I think if you’re mindful that all you’re putting out there is quality content that benefits your audience, that you’re not putting anything out there to please the algorithm and keep to a schedule (filler content as we call it), then I think we can say that could be the right amount of content.

Perhaps too much content comes when we neglect to think about the way we’re shaping our audiences’ habits for the worse. Too much content comes from a goal of wanting to keep your audience on their screens and hooked consistently.

Your audience are human beings. And as a creator, they enable you to make a living. So I think respecting that and respecting their time, their attention, and their quality of life is crucial.

Ask ‘what are you expecting from them?’ and ‘what are you hoping for them?’.

Do you have their well-being in your mind, or are you only thinking about your goals?

It’s hard. I get that. We all want to build something great with our brand. We want to be successful. But I do feel it’s time to move away from this individualistic mindset of growth at any cost, and more to a holistic approach of what is good for the collective.

I think we as creators have a responsibility to do that given the fact that our audience is what gives us the opportunity to be creators in the first place. I think we can all do that by adding value, not noise.

And ultimately, this shift in creating and consuming less will lead to improved well-being for the creator and their audience, society as a whole, and future generations.

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Cassie Widders

Social Media Strategist, Podcast Host, Speaker & Digital Wellbeing Advocate