Jem Wolfie is a curvy model and influencer from Australia and has over 2.6 million followers on Instagram—more than enough to work with to leverage ad deals into a steady source of income. Wolfie, however, is not content with the content, opting to erect a paid-content model on OnlyFans and generating millions. We took a look at how she pulled it off and why OnlyFans is so beloved among porn stars.
Jem Wolfie posts scantily clad pics of her Kim Kardashian body—her words—on Instagram. The posts (and the bod) have net the young las from Perth an excess of 2.6 million fans on the image sharing platform. “I started posting content on social media, mainly Instagram, about 5 years ago.”, says Wolfie. “The fans came because I listened and as long as their requests were acceptable to me, I gave them more of what they wanted. I think this is why I attract genuine fans as they understand what I do and how far I will go.” And it’s this attention and reach that she was able to leverage into a heavy payday away from Instagram.
On her Instagram account, Wolfie directs her followers to premium content via a link in her profile to her account on OnlyFans . Wolfie says she earns up to USD 30,000 per day on the platform. In her first 8 months of activity on OnlyFans she earned USD 1.3 million—which prompeted a backlash in her native Australia.
Platforms like OnlyFans,“Just for Fans” or Fancentro (formerly Snapcentro, which we covered back in 2017) are widely considered paywalls for the porn industry. They work just like Instagram, Facebook or Twitter: user feeds display content from accounts they follow. The biggest difference is that every user pays to see content from influencers or porn stars. The model works for Wolfie, who posts more suggestive content on OnlyFans, but no explicit content, because she promises more and exclusive content and to engage with her fans directly. According to the site, OnlyFans has 6 million registered users and 50,000 content creators. According to web analytics tool SimilarWeb, OnlyFans notches 29 million visits a year; the arrow is pointing up.
The platform was founded in 2016 by Brit Tim Stokely, who had tried his hand previously at establishing viable business models for porn. One such project is Customs4U (watch the founder explain the business model himself). On Customs4U, users can communicate their desires to registered porn stars and, for a fee, receive personalized porn. While working on Customs4U, Stokely was able to get several actors and actresses on board for his latest project, OnlyFans. It must be said, however, that OnlyFans is not aimed merely at porn stars, but rather at content creators from all areas.
Nevertheless, The New York Times anointed the platform as the savior for porn actors and actresses. The adult industry had been struggling to compete with the gobs of free (and illegally uploaded) content on “Tube” portals, which made it exceedingly difficult to fairly pay adult content creators. OnlyFans aims to rëempower adult actors and actresses. On OnlyFans they can decide freely what to bare and what not to. Generally speaking, they need not be overly explicit to stand out and can be more creative.
From Instagram to OnlyFans
Despite there not be a requisite for explicit content, the majority of the 50,000 creators on the platform do bare a great deal. It makes sense from OnlyFans perspective to provide a home for such content. For OnlyFans a common funnel is influencers and adult actors refrain from showing too much skin on Instagram or Twitter (it’s illegal on Instagram), merely teasing that there is more to see on their OnlyFans account, the links to which they post in their bios and descriptions. Adult star Christy Mack, for example, aggressively pushes her OnlyFans account by posting several tweets referring fans to that account and the exclusive content only found on OnlyFans.
When you go to an OnlyFans account, like Jem Wolfie’s, you don’t see anything at all initially. To see the exclusive content, you first need to pay for a subscription, which is currently USD 5 for the first 30 days. After the first month, the price increases to USD 10 a month and is only applicable to Wolfie’s content. Although that is on the same price level as a Netflix subscription, many of the top OnlyFans accounts make enough to live off of. Subscription prices can be freely determined by the content creators and generally charge between USD 5 and 20 per month. There is no price cap. In addition, fans can leave tips, which can be given as kudos for the content or used to pay for personalized content. OnlyFans retains 20% in commission for every transaction on the platform.
“Basically, OnlyFans is online go-go dancing,” according to gay porn star Matthew Camp who told the New York Times that he makes about 10K a month on the platform. He also redirects his 500,000 Instagram followers to OnlyFans. Danii Harwood, who worked as a cam girl on GlamGirls before OnlyFans came into existence, is also open about how much she makes. From August 2018 to November 2018 she made USD 170,000 on the platorm.
No app, but users aplenty
The biggest problem for OnlyFans: there is no iOS or Android app, because porn content is not allowed in the app stores and platforms have to give a 30% cut on in-app purchases to Apple, i.e. on every subscription. Therefore, users are forced to access OnlyFans via their mobile browser. But OnlyFans is able to save marketing costs, as it is very much in creators’ interest to convert free-users into pay-users, which is a massive growth lever.
“‘I think OnlyFans is a force for good and an incredible way to make an income from your content.”, says Wolfie. there are a growing number of mainstream influencers who create valuable content that fans and followers are happy to pay for. Personal trainers, makeup artists and other content creators I know are posting workouts and tutorials and having amazing success.” For her part, Wolfie is a top earner although she refrains from posting x-rated content. Perhaps the OnlyFans model could be viable for influencers to fairly monetize their content. Although Wolfie doesn’t only engage in sponsorship deals for her Instagram, curating her own fashion collection and fitness program–but those are available on other platforms.