Natalie Star is one of the highest-profile cam stars on the net. The Fleshlight CamStar model has appeared in Playboy, and her insights and business savvy have been featured prominently across adult industry media. Star has also been recruiting and mentoring models since 2010, and models who work with her are becoming some of today’s top earners. Natalie Star stopped by YNOT Cam to share some tips for career success.
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Nowadays, there are so many cam companies — networks, platforms, and studios, each with their own unique personality and norms. On some sites, everything goes down in free chat, while others are “by appointment only.” Some networks are all about model support, while others may as well be run by bots. That’s how difficult it is to get someone on the phone!
As a new model, or even as an experienced player, it might be difficult to determine which type of work environment is best suited for you. There are a number of factors to weigh, from your own comfort level to the types of clients you want to attract. More often than not, a company’s nut-and-bolts operational basics related to payouts and fees are the first hurdle to surmount.
Natalie Star offered a few evaluation points to consider when you want to make an informed decision about the work environment best suited to you.
“I remember when there were only three major cam sites to choose from,” Star reflected. “But today it seems as if the net has become saturated. All it takes is a quick Google search, and you’re presented with an endless-seeming amount of choices.
“And let’s face it,” she continued. “With identity theft on the rise and the web full of work-from-home scams, sending your personal information out to who knows whom with hopes of landing a webcam job can be some pretty scary stuff.”
According to Star, choosing the right company to work with can make all the difference in the world. But how do you weed out the bullshit from the get-go?
Asking questions before filling out any online application is very important, and if a company can’t be bothered to respond to your questions in a prompt and thorough manner, you know to be on your way. But what, exactly, should you ask?
Keeping initial questions short, simple, and to the point is key. According to Star, these are the first things you should ask as a potential cam model.
Do you offer state and country blocking?
State and country blocking prevent your profile from being shown in regions you determine to be off limits. This can be in an effort to keep a family member from stumbling across your cam site. Or, if you are doing shows that challenge the delicate sensibilities of certain communities, they won’t have the opportunity to get riled up about them — because they’re blocked!
According to Star, most sites offer state and country blocking, but keep in mind this is not 100-percent guaranteed. “Because cell phones and tablets use roaming IPs, there is a chance that your profile may slip through a block,” Star explained. “You must be aware of this.”
What is your minimum payout requirement?
A minimum payout requirement is how much you must earn before a company cuts you a check. Companies do not have to pay you until you meet their minimum, agreed-upon limit. Sometimes this can be rather high.
“My company Major League Cams has a $50 minimum payout requirement,” Star said. “Many other companies have $100 to $200 minimum payout requirement.”
How much do you charge for direct deposit?
Guess what? If you want your money faster than the Pony Express can deliver snail mail, you often can get it directly deposited into your bank account. Banks charge a fee for this service, and you likely will be the one absorbing said fee.
“My company charges $3 a pay period [for direct deposit], meaning you will see a $3 deduction on your payroll statement every time I pay you,” Star explained. “But to put it into perspective, many companies charge anywhere from $25 to $35 per payout, which is $50 to $70 a month out of your earnings if you’re being paid on a regular bimonthly basis. Ouch!”
FYI: Direct-deposit fees are taken out of your earnings, which will also impact how soon you meet your minimum payout requirement.
A final note on quality versus quantity.
“Many models will beg to differ with what I have said here and will quickly tell you that to them the most important thing is how high a percent they earn,” Star said.
For some, getting a higher payout percent seems more important. But according to Star, this is where many models make a mistake, causing them to fail in webcam.
“Sites that boast high percents tend to not have enough traffic, or they fail to tell you that you are going to be one of 2000-plus models on at a time,” Star explained.
When a site has no traffic or you are just one of thousands getting lost in a user’s scroll, your percent take-home is irrelevant.
“Any smart model in this industry will quickly tell you that 100 percent of nothing is nothing,” Star said. “The network I have been with going on seven years come this October never has more then 175 girls or guys on at a time, and the rooms are always full. That’s good math.”
In sum, according to Star, there is no right or wrong company. There is, however, right and wrong for you and your goals.
“The key is to find the right webcam company that works for you,” she said.
Take the time to get your questions answered in advance and be honest with yourself about what you need from a cam company. This will help everyone do better in the long run.
Visit Natalie Star on Twitter at @NatalieStarLive.