Orca lets content creators create digital storefronts selling select products – and they earn a 20% commission
If digital content creators want to make money from physical products, they usually have two options: create and sell their own merchandise, or connect with a company and promote their products to their viewers.
Creators who choose the latter option may receive a one-time lump sum. For example, they may receive $2,500 for a 15-second commercial in their latest YouTube video. Or they can make money on an ongoing basis through an affiliate program, where they earn a percentage each time someone follows their personalized link and buys something from the company’s store.
Things have been like this for years. Merch or sponsorship. Lump sum payment or affiliate links.
Subscribe for Tubefilter’s Daily Top Stories
Now orca wants to be another option.
Orca was founded in 2020 by former Studio71 executive Max Benatveteran producer lauren stevensand actor/producer Rachel Ramras. So far, it has received funding from Discovery of Warner Bros. director of strategy Sean Kisker, pocket watch CEO Chris Williams, MrBeast President Marc Hustvedt, Mechanismit is Brendan Gahanand Doing Things Media co-founders Derek Lucas and Reid Hailey.
The company partners with selected companies and collects all their products in one large catalog. Content creators can then sort through this catalog and create their own Orca storefronts filled with handpicked items, such as DIY bubble tea kits, sustainable skincare lines, and recycled metal jewelry.
Once their digital store is created, creators can be quite passive. Of course, they have to promote it to their followers, but on the business side, their part is basically done. They don’t have to deal with storage or fulfillment – that’s done by the companies themselves – and if they feel they need to add more products, they don’t have to. sit down with a design team; they just have to browse the Orca catalog.
And that’s the point, said Benator Tubular filter.
“Making products is difficult,” he says. “Even if you’re a celebrity, it’s hard to create your own product line.”
Some designers, he says, simply don’t have the time or inclination to get into making their own products. But they still deserve a way to earn a substantial income on an ongoing (and fairly passive) basis.
“There are affiliate programs, but even that requires a bit of an entrepreneurial spirit that not everyone has,” he says. “And the average affiliate fee is around 2.5%.”
When an item is purchased from a designer’s Orca store, they earn 20% of the sale price.
“So on a sale of $40, you make $8,” Benator explains.
Orca started opening up to content creators earlier this year and is currently seeing a new storefront launching “every half hour, every day, 24 hours a day,” says Benator.
This month, the company launched a tool that allows creators to add social account links to their Orca storefronts, instead of adding their Orca store as a link on a link-in-bio product like Koji or Linktree.
Garrett Perkinsproduct manager of Orca, is the one who had the idea to offer social links.
“We’ve learned that one of the most important things for our creators is to stay connected with their audience across their entire online presence,” he says, “so we created this as a way to centralize this presence while having Orca as the main link. ”
Benator says Orca is also developing a sharing tool. “Let’s say you’re at a party and you’re wearing a shirt or a hat that’s in your window display,” he says. “And one of your friends is like, ‘Oh, that’s great. Where did you get that?’ You can say ‘I’ll send you a link’ and hit a share button that actually sends them to your page.”
Orca can’t share the exact number of creators or companies it works with, or details about how much money creators make from its showcases, Benator says. He says Orca currently offers thousands of products and eventually aims to offer hundreds of thousands in a wide variety of niches.
“At this point, the discovery is going to be really important,” he says. “We are already starting to work on tools that will allow, if a creator arrives and it is a tennis creator, to bring out the best products for tennis, for example.”
Orca is also particularly interested in bringing in more products from businesses owned by women and members of marginalized communities, Benator said.
“We have always looked for independent brands, brands owned by women and minorities,” he says. “We sought diversity and to be as inclusive as possible with our product partners.”
Benator says that right now Orca’s team is small, and “we’re limited in scope” to new ventures. “But we pay close attention to what’s trending and what’s popular,” he says. “So it’s, do we believe in it too?” Are we excited about this product? Do we believe in the brand mission?
He adds that 90% of the companies contacted by Orca are “thrilled to enter our catalog”.
Ultimately, Orca wants to be a win-win solution for creators and sellers, he says.
“We allow anyone to become a small business owner,” he says. “Anyone can sign up to be a seller on Orca. It doesn’t matter where you are or where you’re from. And similarly, for our brands, we don’t ask them for any commitment. They get a whole new sales channel with the connection of trust between a creator and his audience.”