The world of porn has changed shape over the last few decades as professional studios concede to the power of the internet’s ability to deliver instant amateur porn via live cam sites.
More and more men and women are coming to the realisation that there is money to be made from doing what they love on camera and the opportunities to make ready cash with cam modelling are endless. There are hundreds of cam sites and thousands of amateurs all trying their luck in the world of homemade porn with some achieving considerable success. Others aren’t nearly as successful so we wanted to give you a head start in how to make money as a cam star.
In this guide, we talk you the through the process of setting up as a cam model including the equipment you will need as well as give you some important guidance on how to get ahead of the pack and make some serious money.
- 1 What is a Cam Star?
- 2 Who Can be a Cam Model?
- 3 What Kind of Money Can You Make as a Cam Star?
- 4 Choosing Which Live Cam Site to Work With
- 5 Setting Up as a Cam Star
- 6 Setting Up Your Channel
- 7 Top Tips for Aspiring Cam Models
- 8 Enjoy the Experience
What is a Cam Star?
Essentially a cam star is a form of live pornography where the audience watch performers over the internet. Channels are hosted by a cam site where payment can be taken from a viewing audience in the form of pay-per-minute shows (group or private) or via free shows where the action only takes place when tips are paid.
Whilst all shows are sexual in nature the content of a channel is determined by the performer themselves and can be nude or just teasing, include masturbation or be performed with a second (or third) performer.
Essentially, a cam star performs for an audience and those who are prepared to commit time and effort can make some serious cash.
Who Can be a Cam Model?
Yes, there are cam broadcasters who are young, slim and stunning who may make good money, but this is not the sole recipe for success. In fact, some of these performers do not make much money at all, mistakenly believing that all they have to do is show up on camera to please an audience,
Being a successful cam star is about getting to know what your audience wants and delivering this professionally and consistently.
Cam stars can come from any walk of life, be any size, shape or race. The beauty of cam modelling is that there is an audience for every type of performer.
In fact, the only thing you have to be to be a cam star is over 18 and willing to work hard to make your channel a success. If you have a webcam, can prove your age with photo ID and have the right attitude then you can be a cam star.
What Kind of Money Can You Make as a Cam Star?
Let’s cut to the chase here. Yes, some people will be looking at becoming a cam star in an attempt to make it in the porn industry with others simply enjoying the fact that others are watching them perform. However, most people will be interested in the rewards, so how much money can you make as an amateur internet porn star?
In short, there is no limit to the amount of cash you could make as a cam star with only your time, effort and attitude being the barrier to success. That might seem like a ‘how long is a piece of string’ kind of answer but it really is true. Being well prepared and heeding the advice we give below could see you making in excess of $5,000 per month. Some of the most successful cam models reportedly make more than $75,000 per month with single tips from loyal fans exceeding $10,000!
You can find more details about some of the big tips received by popular and successful cam stars in our article, ‘Hey, Big Spender’.
Realistically, and on a part-time basis, you can expect your initial earnings to be anything from a few hundred dollars a month to a few thousand.
What will determine your success is exactly what kind of shows you are offering and how you deliver them. Some cam stars are naturally very beautiful with amazing physiques but that is not enough to engage your audience, you have to give something unique or special to your paying public.
You can find out more about how to set your channel apart from the rest of the crowd in our ‘Tips’ section below in order to maximise your income from your cam channel.
Choosing Which Live Cam Site to Work With
Choosing which cam site to work with is an important decision to help you make the most money as a cam star. Not only will you be relying on them to deliver traffic to your channel but you will also be paying them for hosting your performances. This is normally done via a fixed % commission. With this in mind you will want to balance the commission that you pay alongside their ability to deliver consistent and reliable audience numbers.
Yes, some sites may charge you as much as 50% commission but if they can provide you with a steady stream of viewers then this is preferable to receiving 100% commission from a site that gets you zero traffic!
Unfortunately, there is no substitute for research in order to make this decision and we can’t give a single recommendation that is suitable for all. Your choice of cam site to partner with will depend on the kind of channel you intend creating along with your own credentials and aims. For instance, performers who have a specialty fetish offering may do better on a niche cam site whilst softcore offerings of the same material could fare better with one of the bigger names. Some sites offer performers better commission based on private chats whilst models on other sites receive little from chats but more from one off tips.
The other influencing factor is where you are broadcasting from and your target audience as well as your nationality and native tongue. An English model may do well in American markets but less well in France.
What To Look For in a Good Partner Cam Site
At this stage, we would recommend that you do your research and look to answer the following questions:
- What commission rates does the company pay? Some sites charge very little whilst others can take as much as 50%.
- How often does the company pay commission? Some pay weekly, twice monthly whilst others are less frequent.
- By what method does the company pay commission (BACS, Check, PayPal)? Some sites pay out using services like Payoneer or other formats. There are issues with PayPal and cam site payments so do ensure that you can legitimately receive the money you earn.
- What special equipment (if any) is needed to work with them? Some sites only offer HD channels so you may need to invest in a high-resolution webcam and upgrade your internet connection speed.
- Are you committing to an exclusive partnership with the site? Some sites do not allow models to work on other networks and demand exclusivity from their broadcasters. If you intend working with more than one site then be clear that this does not breach any rules.
- Are any ‘acts’ or ‘scenes’ prohibited? Whilst you must always remain within the law when you broadcast, some sites very clearly specify the extent and nature of what performers cannot do. Always check in advance before signing up.
Popular Cam Sites to Consider
There are literally hundreds of cam sites on the market, some have huge traffic numbers (with equally high numbers of models) whilst others are niche or perform well in certain countries. Your research will inform you which sites to consider but we would suggest having a look at these popular sites:
- IM Live
- Bonga Cams
- Flirt 4 Free
- X Models
- Internet Modeling
- My Free Cams
- Live Jasmin
Don’t forget to check out our Ultimate Adult Cams Guide to get a full lowdown on some of the biggest name cam sites out there.
When researching your chosen cam site be sure to look at the terms and conditions for new models as well as looking at what kind of channels are popular on the site.
A good part of your research should be watching how other performers are doing it; you will quickly learn what works and what doesn’t.
Setting Up as a Cam Star
So, you’ve made the choice to go ahead with becoming a cam star to make some money, what do you need to get started?
First of all, you will need to take note of exactly what the cam site you have chosen to work with requires of you. Your model agreement should detail the specification of the equipment you need including (if you are working from home) the speed of internet connection, resolution of camera and any requirements of the space you are working with (some sites will stipulate your room needs to be free of advertising). If you are working with a studio then this may not be relevant as you will be required to attend their premises in order to perform.
However, we would recommend that you read the small print of your agreement and any guidance notes provided to be sure that you are complying with their rules.
In general though, you will need some basic ingredients to set up as a cam star.
If you are intending to broadcast your channel from your home, then you will need some equipment.
Firstly, you need to have a PC or laptop with a webcam that is connected to the internet. The speed and reliability of your connection is important. Not only will a faster connection speed improve the quality of your channel, but it will also help you access working with those sites that demand an HD experience for their customers.
In order to provide quality streaming of your channel, you will need a high-resolution web cam.
You will also need to consider how you will respond to your audience via SMS chat. A wireless keyboard can help you do this more easily, particularly when you are mid-performance!
Some cam sites allow audience members to interact with their models using hi-tech sex toys. Vibrators and dildos that have wireless connectivity can be controlled by viewers who tip certain amounts and cam models who use these toys can see earnings increase as a result. They aren’t cheap but you might wish to consider including this option in your performance.
Once you have your equipment, you will need a suitable space from which to broadcast your channel. Often this is a bedroom (or spare bedroom) where performers can get comfortable and not be disturbed. It is essential that the environment you choose is both of these things; free from distractions and, as you may be broadcasting for a few hours, be comfortable. Consider also that you may be in a state of undress so you should ensure that the space is warm.
Successful cam stars take the trouble to make their performance space a professional one that is well lit, free from the clutter of daily life (nobody wants to see your ironing and children’s toys in the background) and sexy.
No cam site expects you to have a purpose built studio in your home but consider how you will incorporate and transform a space to suit your purposes.
Making a success of your cam star career relies very heavily on your being able to commit to a regular broadcast schedule. Building an audience is about being professional and being persistent. Broadcasting at the same time every week (or day) is essential so make sure that you have the time to deliver to your published schedule.
Taxation & Legal Paperwork
Depending on the site you are working with you should need to complete an agreement as well as provide documentation in order to prove your identity. Not only will this allow you to be paid but is often a legal requirement. Documents are usually some form of photo ID and model release form.
Don’t forget that your earnings will be subject to the prevailing tax laws of your country of origin and you will need to register your income from cam modelling.
Establishing Your Broadcaster Brand
During your research phase you may well have discovered that some models perform better than others either as a result of how they look, what they do or how they do it. Establishing your performance persona is an important element of being a successful cam star. If you are focusing on offering an online dominatrix show, then you need to maintain this image; continuity is essential.
A strong ‘brand’ can be anything from your look and style through to your onscreen persona. You should focus on your strengths and build on these to determine ‘who’ you are going to be when you are broadcasting. For many cam stars, this is merely an extension of their own personality and, unless you are good at acting or ‘performing in role’ then this is usually the best place to start. Often, the more natural the performer the better their channel ratings.
Setting Up Your Channel
Each cam site has different ways in which to set up your channel but all of them encourage as much detail as possible in your profile. As regular cam site visitors we know how important it is to include as much information about who you are, what you do for your tips and the kind of things that turn you on. As an audience, we want to interact with, not just watch, you. Remember that live cam sex is different to viewing porn because we want to make a live connection with you, so tell us who you are.
If you have chosen a site that works with tips rather than paid shows you should make it clear in your profile just what kind of tips you want and what you will do for these. Some sites offer the ability to publish a wish list which can be anything from vouchers to real gifts bought on Amazon.
You should include photographs and videos where possible so those audience members who hit your channel during a lull are tempted to stick around for the action.
Read through the guidelines published for your cam site to determine what you need to do to get your channel up and running and be thorough.
Building an Audience
When it comes to being a successful cam star, engaging your audience is key. Not only are they your source of income but they may also become a loyal base on which to grow your channel. Treat every single member of your audience with professionalism but reserve your best performances and personal service for those who tip well.
Always make a note of those members who come back time after time so you can greet them personally. It is worth going through the transcript of your broadcast after you have signed off (when you aren’t distracted by your performance!) to make a note of regular customers.
Building an audience can take time so be patient but don’t be complacent or disheartened. The rate of your success not only relies upon the reach of the cam site you have partnered with but your own efforts.
Many cam stars run social media accounts to complement their cam shows; effectively channelling followers on Instagram, Twitter and Kik to their paid source of entertainment. Consider how you can maximise your own reach via social media and incorporate these into your broadcasting endeavours.
The popular website, OnlyFans, is a great way to consolidate your audience base. You can read more in our review of OnlyFans and find out how both escorts and cam models are monetising their followers.
Don’t forget to keep an up to date schedule of when you will be broadcasting published on your profile. This can help build a regular following.
Top Tips for Aspiring Cam Models
Hopefully during your research phase you will have taken the time to check out the competition and browse some of the channels being offered by other performers. You don’t have to do this for very long before you stumble across some models who would have done well to take some of our advice; badly lit rooms, poor resolution images or ill-prepared environments all contributing to (undoubtedly) low audience figures. These models (and others) were probably looking bored and may have been playing with their phones or interacting with someone off camera whilst waiting to be engaged by a visitor to their channel. Wrong attitude. It is the visitor who needs to be engaged and by that we mean both visually and personally.
Yes, sometimes waiting for an audience to build can be frustrating and there are always going to be those users who log in, stay for a few minutes without saying anything, tipping or doing anything but you need to always look ready for action and greet those visitors who stay more than a few minutes with a welcoming (and seductive) message.
Building and growing your audience takes effort and you need to apply your time effectively whilst on camera in order to do this. Apply yourself to your cam work as if it were any other job and you will reap the rewards.
If you need to check your phone or deal with an imminent crisis off camera, then pause the broadcast. There is nothing less sexy than being mid-flow with a cam performer who then drops her persona to take a personal call. Even better, turn off your phone and clear the house of distractions. Commit to the time you are on camera with full focus.
Which leads us to the best handful of tips you are likely to get about making it as a cam star; and, believe us when we say, we know what makes cam girls engaging enough to tip and ‘Favorite’:
- Be flirty – the audience wants to be seduced and, if we are regulars or tip well, we want to feel a little special.
- Make an effort to look great – cam sex is about what we can see so make it worth watching (this goes hand in hand with good lighting and a well prepared ‘stage’).
- Smile and smile often – natural performers who look like they are enjoying themselves are a big turn on.
- Use the microphone – as well as being a treat for the eyes, we want to hear you talk dirty, moan and get breathless.
- Don’t ignore the room – just because one guy keeps tipping lots, remember that there are more punters out there who want attention. Try to balance your focus and address us all.
Enjoy the Experience
Lastly, making money as a cam star is a big deal but you should always enjoy the ride. Your new career could be many things, but it should never be a chore or cause stress. Let us see how much you like performing and you’ll be rewarded.
So, good luck and we look forward to seeing you out there.
Featured image via Im Live.