Content creators

Social Media Platform Lets Content Creators Get Their Pieces

Isaac Hayes III, Fanbase CEO

Isaac Hayes III, Fanbase CEO
Photo: Isaac Hayes III

Black content creators have been candid about the disparities they face on various social media platforms. To The root, we reported on the creators of Black TikTok who grew up more and more frustrated with the ability for white creators to make more money and receive more sponsorship offers. These issues have led black creators striking and finding alternative platforms where their voices will be heard and valued. But Isaac Hayes III believes he’s developed a solution that will help people who create viral social content get their due credit. Hayes III spoke with The root of his idea and why he thinks it will be a game changer.

It all started with Spider-Man

In 2018, Hayes IIIcareer songwriter, producer and son of the legendary singer and songwriter, isaac hayes, remarked a kid from his hometown of Memphis who went viral for dancing in a Spider-Man costume to A-ha’s 1984 synth-pop hit, “Take on Me.” After receiving congratulations from Hayes, the youngster asked for his advice on how to capitalize on his newfound popularity. “From that conversation, I realized that this young man had no idea how to monetize his talent. Marvel and Disney own Spider-Man, so if they want to take him down, they can. But he should still be able to. monetize its content and teach people how to dance,” said Hayes, and it was this conversation that inspired Hayes to start Fanbase.

As the name suggests, fan base is a social media platform that allows you to follow any user for free. A fee of $4.99 per month allows you to subscribe to exclusive content. Users can also unlock one extension at a time. The business model allows users to earn money by placing videos, photos, or long-form items behind a paywall for fans to access. The idea is gaining ground. the Instagram account currently has over 103,000 subscribers

But as someone in their 40s who just discovered TikTok, I had to ask, do people really pay for this stuff? And according to Hayes, they are. “I met a young girl who worked at the Apple Store and asked her what her favorite band was. I expected her to say someone very famous like Ariana Grande, but she named an indie group that I had never heard of,” he said. “I asked her if she would pay $4 a month to subscribe to this group, follow the content they put out, and have the chance to win tickets to a show or go backstage and meet them. She said, ‘yeah!’ and that’s when I knew I had to.

Everyone is welcome

At a time when most content is subscription-based, Hayes believes Fanbase can provide a missed opportunity for users to make money from the viral social media content they create. And he wants potential users to know that everyone is welcome. “I built the platform for every person on the planet. I want it to be a multi-billion dollar used platform. The African-American component of all of this is that I’m a black founder, which is rare.

While social media can be a place to find good and bad content, for now, Hayes says he’s not censoring anyone. “I don’t think we’re at that stage yet. I prefer to provide a space where everyone has a voice, and everyone can monetize. Speech is necessary. I just don’t want spaces where people feel like other people don’t belong to them because of the color of their skin or how they decide to live their lives,” he says.

Hayes III, who ticks the same age box as me, says he understands my confusion, but points out that this is how young people want access to their favorite artists. “I didn’t build Fanbase for myself. I built this for a 17 year old who loves Future and wants to see videos of him in the studio or live at a party. I did it for young people, because subscription content is exploding,” he says.

Disrupt traditional media

Hayes says Fanbase will allow users to break free from traditional distribution models that often prevent certain groups (like people of color) from succeeding. Rather than waiting to be discovered, artists will now have the power to turn themselves into stars. “A lot of jobs are going to be replaced by technology. So we need to create an infrastructure where people can monetize themselves and turn themselves into life coaches and comedians and artists and charge people for their expertise,” he says.

If Fanbase achieves its goal, Hayes says it will disrupt all forms of media by removing the distributor from the conversation. And he says artists who want to stay relevant will need to know how to perform in this new space. “I tell artists that if they don’t start monetizing their content, they’re going to be overtaken by someone less talented who decided to do it,” he says. “Nowadays, you have to be a videographer, edit your own videos and be your own publicist. But children have the tools and the know-how to do it. And they will take things to the next level.