Cash Balance Plans for Content Creators

Retirement Planning

 Matt Baisden By: Matt Baisden

I’ve written a few articles on Cash Balance Plans; you can find everything I've written here; but I wanted to focus this piece on a specific group – content creators.

Many content creators are solo business owners. Their business is their personal brand and voice. Let’s talk about who content creators typically are, and why they are ideal candidates for a Cash Balance Plan.

Growth of the Personal Brand

A few years ago, you could read my favorite sports writers on ESPN or Grantland (RIP). My favorite finance writers were at The Wall Street Journal - though Jason Gay is an incredible sportswriter there as well. And I always enjoy reading the healthcare and statistical work at the New York Times. However, over the last few years the paid newsletter model has experienced massive growth. Using platforms such as Substack, many writers have left large institutions and monetized their own voices. This has allowed these writers to focus on the work they and their subscribers enjoy. I personally have three subscriptions on Substack.

We see similar things happening across other social platforms. Podcasters and artists are using Patreon to monetize their work. Twitter is introducing paid spaces and super followers. YouTube pays creators for views and Instagram influencers use their following for paid product advertising.

This ecosystem means there is a group of creators with significant streams of income.

Cash Balance Plan as a Retirement Plan

Part of being out on your own means that you don’t have access to a 401(k) managed by your employer. Creators oversee their own retirement savings. This is when a Cash Balance Plans could be used as a tool. Cash Balance Plans allow business owners to save a significant amount of money, often $150k+, every year.

There are two main hurdles companies face when implementing a Cash Balance Plan. First, compliance costs are generally high because of Department of Labor testing. However, for solo business owners, testing is often not required. Compliance is easier, which means it’s cheaper.

The other issue is cash flow. Many businesses have “lumpy” income or are reliant on a few large customers. Successful creators can have more predictable income. With thousands of paying monthly subscribers, while there may be some turnover, you can likely predict your income accurately. You are not reliant on a specific client or project. Cash Balance Plans are great solutions for retirement savings when you have high, predictable income.

Next Steps:

If you are a Content Creator who is looking for a solution to retirement savings, please contact me at, call me at 314-392-4630 or schedule a meeting with me here. I have helped many solo business owners, and would be happy to help you determine which retirement plan solution is best for you.

Additional Resource:

Click the download button on the image below to receive our Free Guide to Find the Right Retirement Plan For Your Small Business, and to gain an understanding of the different retirement plan options available that meet your personal and business goals.

retirement plans for small businesses

Other Small Business Resources:


This material has been prepared for informational purposes only and should not be used as investment, tax, legal or accounting advice. All investing involves risk. Past performance is no guarantee of future results. Diversification does not ensure a profit or guarantee against a loss. You should consult your own tax, legal and accounting advisors.

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With four years’ of portfolio management experience under his belt, Matt came to Plancorp in 2016 to join our Retirement Plan Advisors practice. He loves helping business owners build retirement plans that make their companies stronger and give owners the ability to retire when they want. More »