Content Providing On The Web: A Beginner's Guide

Recently I started a site selling images I have produced. I thought maybe you would all like to know how it works. My experiences may give insight to those who wish to start their own content providing site and may also help others decide who they want to buy content from in the future.

I own Rock Bottom Content. We launched the site in June of 2001 and since then we have had some success in what most consider an extremely competitive area of the web porn business. I contribute part of this success to the fact that we do sell our content really cheap but I believe luck played a role also. It all started about 2 years ago when we began shooting content. We were very naïve about how much competition there was and several content companies tried to take advantage of us. One thing to keep in mind is that most content providers do not produce they’re own material. Many of these providers either have photographers they sub-contract or they come across freelance photographers wanting to sell their images. Now there isn’t anything wrong with reselling someone else’s produced images, it’s just something a lot of content providers won’t admit too. So this is how we got started, we were hired by another content provider to provide images for re-sell. They purchased the models and paid us for shooting them. We did this for about a year and then began shooting content for our own site. That’s just a little background on us.

There are three components to a good content site: the content, the site, and advertising. How well you integrate these components can dictate how well your site does and in turn how much money you make.

First we will talk about the content. You must decide what type of content you want to shoot based on what is selling. I firmly believe that those going into the content providing business now without any experience need to go niche specific. This means shooting straight, gay, larger women, older women, bondage, transvestites and so on. Most of the successful sites out there have a large customer base for these types of images. However most new content providers want to shoot beautiful images of beautiful people, but there are way too many glamour photographers out there already. Even though the glamour content sells for more, the overhead is also greater. We decided to stick with amateur style photos of real looking girls and guys and tried to get as niche specific as we could handle, and find. We still take some glamour sets, but that isn’t our main focus. Things like cheerleaders, BBW, mature, girl girl, almost any sex acts, sell well.

Next is the site design, I believe this is the easiest part to mess up on. At first our site was very unproductive; our content was priced too high, it was hard to navigate, and we had no billing system. Pricing can be difficult, you want to be competitive but your also want to make a profit. If your prices are too high people are going to be less willing to try your content and if your prices are too low, you’re kind of stuck with those prices. It may be kind of unsettling to your customers if they return to buy your new sets and they are way more expensive than other sets they previously purchased of the same quality.

Navigation is a biggie. If your customer has to figure out how to buy, you’re not doing a good job at selling your product. Also, if your customer is a webmaster of a pay-site or even a TGP poster then they may have very little time to look. Make it as simple as possible. You may also want to have two credit card billing companies, if one goes down at least you won’t lose all your sales that day. Also remember customer service is the king. If someone is buying content and can’t talk, email, or ICQ the owner/manager if they have a problem, they go elsewhere real fast. Customers like flexibility, even if you can’t do what they want right away, maybe you can later. If you show the customers you care about them, they will come back.

Lastly we’ll discuss advertising, this is very important especially if you have no money. To build up traffic at first you will need link trades. There are dozens of webmaster resource sites out there who are willing to trade links with you in order to share traffic. Also word-of-mouth may help your business. If your customers are satisfied then they may tell their friends about your site. Also search engines may play an important role. It may take weeks to get into some of the major free search engines but in the mean time you may want to bid on keywords with some of the more popular pay-per-click SE’s like Overture. But maybe to most important way to advertise your content site is to make friends, network with people in the business and let them know you are a friendly, trustworthy business-person with a quality product. Building a repeat customer base will be the overall key to your success.

Everything I talked about here is just a drop in the bucket. For right now the last bit of advice I will give you is to make your customer comfortable with you and your product. Licenses from some content companies are outrageously intricate and full of exclusions. Let it go a bit. Liberalize your stance on things. Produce more content don’t make them buy the sets over again. And for god sake let the free-site and TGP poster make some money. Theyll keep coming back and buying 3 and 4 dollar sets to the point where they buy everything eventually.

Good luck to all you webmasters and future content providers!

Reader Comments: (2 posts)

Lorene says:
Wow! Great thniknig! JK
January 14th, 2012
at 2:45am EST
Rating StarRating Star
Robert says:
This person has no business telling people how to run their business. Most of the content he sells is brokered content from 3rd party producers. He has terrible customer service, above he says customer service is the king, he does not return emails, and lastly he's not paying the producers that agreed to let him sell their content. STAY AWAY FROM ROCKBOTTOM CONTENT illegaly selling content.
December 10th, 2010
at 10:06am EST
Rating Star


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