I’ve been reading your site for a few years now. Always interesting conversations and ideas presented about the industry.
I’m responding about performers working outside of Porn Valley. I definitely fall into that category. My boyfriend & I currently self produce our own smut for 2 Clips4Sale stores, a ManyVids studio and my own website. Are we successful? I’d say we’re doing pretty well without working within the confines of the mainstream industry.
I started in the adult entertainment industry kind of as a joke right after turning 18, I’m 21 now. I was looking for quick and easy cash and saw ads for web camming. My boyfriend had a vanilla job, but he agreed to jump into it with me. So, we started doing couple shows at night and I would cam alone during the day. I did pretty well with it and always made sure to be grateful and humble to my paying fans who watched my shows.
Shortly after starting, a local producer reached out to me offering me some work in the pro-amateur market. Not quite ready to jump into mainstream porn all the way, I did a few hand job, solo & girl-girl scenes. It was at this point that I decided to start self producing as well. I was able to offer solo and boy-girl (with my boyfriend) content through Clips4Sale.
We taught ourselves how to edit content, work lighting, handle camera angles and make sure to market our content to the right audience. Twitter & other social media outlets worked amazingly and I found the key to good sales was to be approachable & appreciative of my fan base.
I have shot for fetish producers over the last few years and last year I did start filming boy-girl scenes outside of my relationship. Until recent, I did have a wonderful agent through Coxxx Models. However, I kept my work volume outside of my own product low, so I didn’t compete with myself. Does this mean I won’t work within the mainstream? Not at all. I’m just a little more choosey as to who I’ll work with that fits the image I’ve built and what my fan base appreciates.
Right now I offer a fetish oriented store on clips4sale and a “schoolgirl” themed store as well. Most of my content is available as well on ManyVids, where I opted to sell on there as a studio instead of as an independent girl. I use the friendships and contacts I’ve built in the industry to do trade shoots and I’m hoping to get to a point of doing paid shoots with talent for my content. Of course, all talent is tested through Talent Testing.
I want to also highlight that last summer I jumped on board with ModelCentro and started my own member site through them. It’s done better than I could have ever dreamed. That site is 100% me and I’m really proud of it. While it’s still a growing site, I’m able to offer clips, photos, more direct access to fans, cam shows and personal blog updates. ModelCentro is constantly working on adding new features to it and it’s a great tool for independent performers like myself to really express my brand. Because that’s really the key, performers need to brand themselves in this business.
I want to express that it can be done. That performers and smaller studios can make it work in this business. I am not against the mainstream and would even love to shoot some in that arena to expand my market a little further. But overall, I’m content where I’m at. My advice to new performers or people looking to get into the industry is figure your brand out, try a few things and see what works for you. Shoot what you love and the fans will come. Yes, the paying fans who appreciate what you’re doing. Stay active on social media and make sure to interact with people as much as you can. Networking is also key. I’ve not gone to AVN yet, but I’ve made it a point to attend FetishCon, NightMoves Awards & EXXXotica to meet fans and industry alike. Try out different platforms for your brand. If you’re a solo girl or a couple, try camming so you’re not just a photo or just a video. Most importantly (though it sounds corny and cliche’), stay honest and stay true to you.
I’d like to think I’ve done decently for myself in 3 years. I do decently on cam, my studios through each platform have generally been in the top or the top of the categories I post my content under (especially the teen market lol) and my website is growing everyday (seriously, member sites are NOT dead if you interact with the fans regularly). I have steady income, I pay all of my bills on time, taxes and even health insurance coverage. That’s what I’ve been able to do at 21. Oh yeah, and I’m also a college student living on my own. I’m in porn for the long haul, but right now it’s not a lifetime career.
Anyways, I hope that’s some feedback for you. Keep rockin’, Mike.
Here are the links to my sites:
Hugs & Kisses!
Thank You Krystal this is GREAT! You hit on a lot of VERY important topics that I will be mentioning in the coming week….Good job!