Couples, Solo Models Raise Profiles, Profits With Pornhub

LOS ANGELES—The couple known as LeoLulu admits they knew little about content production when they started posting explicit videos on Pornhub.

“At first, we only edited our faces out of the shots,” LeoLulu tells AVN. “Now we work much more on the general aspect of the video—color-grading, lighting, teasing, introduction…”

Based in Paris, LeoLulu captured their hardcore sex romps with only a mobile phone in those early days a couple years ago. 

“We went from shooting everything with an iPhone 5 to a couple cameras—GX80 and GoPro—in order to be able to shoot in 4K with 120fps,” LeoLulu reveals. “This is more than enough for amateur content and we’re very satisfied with the technical quality. We just have still a lot to learn regarding shooting and editing to be able to keep being productive and be as creative as we’d like!”

LeoLulu—she is a 21-year-old student and he is a web developer in his mid-twenties—are part of an enterprising new generation of amateur and professional models making a living from the Pornhub Model Payment Program, which pays out a percentage of the ad revenue that their verified videos receive. The top users in the program earn tens of thousands per month.

To participate in the Model Payment Program, users shoot and upload their own videos to their Verified Pornhub Profile and the more popular the video, the more money it makes.

“I believe it took us about six months to get noticed by the algorithm and start accumulating views, hence creating profit,” LeoLulu says. “The key to profit is obviously the views. Getting featured on the homepage is usually what generates the most views. In order to get there, you need a good ranking in the algorithm—which we ignore—but there’s also a random factor. How it works is a mystery.

“You mainly have to be able to create content that attracts the viewer’s attention, keep him interested for a while and convince him enough to react by leaving a comment or a ‘like’ on the video.”

It’s safe to say Pornhub users have taken notice of the couple. To date they have amassed more than 305 million video views on Pornhub, one of the most trafficked sites in the world. In September, LeoLulu won the inaugural Pornhub Award for Most Popular Verified Couple for their efforts.

“We progress a lot through our viewers’ feedback,” LeoLulu says. “This is how we decided what kind of camera to buy, but also what action to perform sometimes or even how to show certain parts of a video. Filming blowjobs without the face was complicated at first, and it’s thanks to people’s comments that we managed to get it right!”

LeoLulu boast 412K-plus subscribers to their channel, uploading an average of one new video per week. A few of their 79 videos have exceeded 5 million views. Now Pornhub is the couple’s No. 1 source of income.

“At first we invested most of the money into new video equipment or outfits but we’re now building up plans to improve our production durably and surprise our fans,” the couple says.

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There are more than 70,000 users in Pornhub’s Model Payment Program—and top performers sometimes make more than $40K per month, according to Sam Nguyen, who manages the team behind the Pornhub Model Payment Program from the company’s headquarters in Montreal.

“It’s insane,” Nguyen says, noting that anyone can sign up for the program with two forms of ID and a photo that confirms your identity.

Nguyen, who has been with Pornhub for six-and-a-half years and formerly worked in the gaming industry, notes that large payouts are not necessarily contingent upon how many views a video receives.

“It’s based on the ads around the video. It does fluctuate,” Nguyen says.

She continues, “What’s really cool [about LeoLulu] is they’re not able to show their faces at all and they’re still able to be really popular. So I think that’s really good for models that are too scared to go into the industry—you could still make a lot of money and be very popular without showing your face.”

Danika Mori, who won the 2018 Pornhub Award for Back Door Beauty—Top Anal Performer, started uploading videos to Pornhub in November 2016, receiving her first payment in January 2017.

The Spanish stunner and her boyfriend Steve had been consumers on the platform. Now they typically upload one new video per week—with 145 videos at press time on their channel that has a whopping 458K subscribers.

“We started to record ourselves about five years ago and then we decided some of these videos are worth sharing in the Pornhub community and that’s why we have so many videos already in our channel,” Danika tells AVN.

“I always thought that the best thing about the images people can see in my channel is that they can see real, passionate sex from two people who love each other; it is really like they are entering in our privacy. They really can see a part of our personality and of our relationship. We don’t pretend to look perfect, just to convey emotions.

“We enjoy to record ourselves and of course we like to watch it then. That could be ‘the secret’ behind the scenes.”

Danika made a living as a shop assistant and waitress while studying economics before she found camming more than six years ago; Steve did door-to-door sales, worked in engineering, waited tables most recently sold tickets in the tourist sector for a private company.

In the Spring of 2018, the couple decided to focus on creating content for their Pornhub channel full time.

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The remarkable reach of the Pornhub platform is evident in their top users—the couple known as Amadani—a combination of Amanda and Daniel—is from Sweden. The 21-year-old Amanda used to work at Burger King, while her boyfriend Daniel, who is in his mid-twenties, did IT support. Their Pornhub channel has 305K-plus subscribers.

“We discovered the program online when we were trying to find a place to upload our amateur videos,” says Amadani, a couple that has racked up more than 246 million video views on 91 videos.

Amadani reports they began profiting from the Pornhub Model Payment Program after just a couple months; now it is their sole source of income. They describe their videos as “passionate, fun and POV.”

“We try to keep a creative touch to them and film when we are really in the mood,” the couple says. “The production value has changed a lot. Our first video was filmed in vertical view on a phone. However as we have gotten more successful we have gotten a real camera and good lights and also edited more and generally put more thought into outfits and themes.” 

Amadani says devoting effort into marketing their videos has been invaluable, “as well as communicating with our fans” on platforms such as Snapchat and Twitter.

“The best part is that we are able to be our own bosses,” Amadani says. “We feel so lucky to be able to live off of something we enjoy doing and had as a hobby in the past.”   

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Lindsey Love found the Pornhub Model Payment Program in May 2016, when she was just 19 and looking up videos by MyCherryCrush.

“Then I found out she was part of the Model Payment Program, so I decided to try it!” Love says.

Love last year was crowned Pornhub’s Most Popular Verified Amateur, a title she received in January that was also celebrated at the first ever Pornhub Awards ceremony in September. The now 22-year-old native of Virginia, who often performs with her real-life partner, Mike Love, has 449K subscribers to her Pornhub Channel that has generated more than 308 million video views on just 62 videos.

“I try to film and upload at least once a week, but in the past I have gotten swamped with schoolwork or experienced reproductive health issues, which hindered my upload goal,” Lindsey Love says. “… Our videos rival pro quality while offering a genuine love and connection that other videos just don’t achieve.”

Love says she and her partner have been together for more than six-and-a-half years.

“We are fluid, and when we have sex we create something that is artistically beautiful,” Lindsey says. “Along with that I have a teen/girl-next-door look, and a big booty. I have a soft innocence about me, but if you watch our videos you realize I’m a total nymph in disguise!”

Love, who saw a noticeable profit about two months after she signed up and stopped camming entirely at that point to focus on videos, says the quality of her uploads has risen in a significant way since she first started using the platform.

“It has changed drastically!” she continues. “When we first started we were using a camera that filmed in 720p HD, and if you used the autofocus it would make a loud sound when adjusting, which was audible in the videos. Roughly a year later we finally upgraded to a nice camcorder, which had silent autofocus and filmed in 1080p HD.

“This camera also had killer storage and was a lot smaller, so we could easily take it with us. [In 2018] we invested in an absolute beauty of a camera. It has a very large lens so it lets in a ton of light, making our shots rival ‘pro’ quality, and it films in a stunning 4K HD. It’s such a solid camera that we don’t even use studio lights anymore. The only downside is that it is quite large, and the storage space doesn’t go as far as the last camera did.

“Where we could film almost an hour of footage on the last camera, this one can film about 30 minutes. The sheer size of a 4K file eats up the memory. But the quality of the films is worth it!”

Love, who waited tables, bagged groceries, worked as a research technician and also assisted a college professor before making porn, says experimentation was key to her success.

“I filmed so many different kinks; I tried different naming and video tagging strategies; I tried out different logos, intros and outros, locations, times and ultimately I found that what I enjoyed most did the best,” explains Lindsey, who cites Pornhub as her primary source of income. “People like to see that you are thoroughly enjoying yourself in the video.”

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The 29-year-old Mandy Flores makes custom videos from her home state of Washington, where in four years she has generated more than 308 million video views on her Pornhub channel, which has 246K subscribers. It took Flores only one month before she received a check from Pornhub for almost 3K for her first video.

The 2018 Pornhub Award winner of the fan-voted Favorite Fetish Model, Flores has been selling customs since 2009 on fetish clip sites.

“And I have done very well, ranking in the top of independent amateur producers worldwide since 2011,” Flores tells AVN. “Because of my popularity on those sites, piracy has been an issue for me almost since the beginning.

“I opened an account on Pornhub just to try and re-direct traffic from my pirated videos to my own sites, but was not aware of the amateur program until April of 2016…”

“My first upload ‘Slutbot Mommy’ ended up being Video of the Month for May 2016 and finished out as a Top 5 Video of the Year. I was actually shocked when my first payment came in for not hundreds, but thousands of dollars!

“All of my industry friends thought I was crazy, but after letting them know about how well Pornhub treats its amateur content producers, at least six of them now are active loaders and doing very well.”

Flores, who has the No. 1 MILF video of all time on Pornhub and one of only two to gain more than 100 million views, says she tries to upload a new video every six weeks—she has 77 so far and only makes customs.

“Each one is the idea or fantasy of an individual who has paid me to make their fantasy into a video,” says Flores, who has produced more than 2000 fetish videos in her career. “The range of fetishes are incredible—from armpit fetish and chewing food to squirting and hardcore, taboo role play.”

Nowadays, Flores shoots with 4K cameras, does multiple takes if necessary, writes a script, utilizes various angles and even re-shoots entire scenes if she’s not happy with the first version.

“I still keep them more amateur-looking. After all, it is just me and my husband shooting,” Flores says.

She points to “content, storyline, title and proper thumbnails” as reasons why some of her videos are more popular than others.

Flores now makes more in two weeks than she did in the entire year of 2006, when she was managing a pizzeria. She also co-owned a restaurant and a green market before embarking on her career in adult video production.

“We sold our last store in 2011 and have only worked on our videos since then,” Flores says. 

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Originally published on: https://avn.com/business/articles/technology/pornhub-model-payment-program-812923.html

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