With a multifaceted approach to the competitive live cam market, the XLoveCash crew has crafted a potent platform that profits models as much as it does affiliates.
And the man behind the curtain, CEO Patrick Koning, also oversees XLoveCam.com, Sex.cam and HeCams.com with the same degree of in-depth web/tech savvy and aggressive business maneuvers that has positioned him so strongly.
One of the biggest milestones was to target and acquire affiliates that would bring us tier one traffic in large volumes on a monthly basis.
By pushing the envelope time and time again, Koning never stops marketing and fine-tuning his product offerings to meet the mercurial demands of customers. Whether it’s the conversion power of his Xclone white label, the availability of advanced developer tools or the mouth-watering revshare options on the table, clients are equipped with many methods to maximize their revenues.
Koning even acquired top-level domain .cam, adding major fuel to his brand’s already fiery mojo. Such a domain extension bodes well for increasingly influential cyberspace dominion.
To delve into his trade secrets, XBIZ sought out Koning for this exclusive behind the cam interview.
XBIZ: Take us back to the inception of XLoveCash.
Koning: Here is the compressed version of events for the inception of XLoveCash. I started out in the adult industry doing French-Minitel, which is a kind of local Teletext in 1994. In 1998, I launched a few swinger websites to take full advantage of the marketplace for adult couples.
In 2000, we saw an opportunity to introduce a webcam service using Microsoft Active X within our swinger sites. After seeing how well the webcam service performed in the swinger sites, we launched a gay webcam service in 2002. Our gay webcam service eventually evolved into XLoveCam.com in 2006 and our affiliate program XLoveCash started two years later in 2008.
Interestingly, it was a friend of mine who suggested that I create an affiliate program at one of the trade shows that I was attending. Initially, I resisted the idea, as I believed an affiliate program would expose the platform to excessive fraud. As I became more comfortable with the idea of an affiliate program, we launched ACWM.Biz in 2008, which was eventually re-branded to XLoveCash.com as you know it now.
XBIZ: In its 10-plus years of operation, how has XLoveCash evolved to better meet the needs of affiliates? What have been the biggest milestones along the way?
Koning: This is our 12th year as a webcam platform. We have to take it back to year one when my friend Emilian advised me to create an affiliate program now known as XLoveCash.com. It was a simple recommendation at a trade show that led us to manage several thousand affiliates and to become the recipient of multiple industry awards for XLoveCash. Over the years, we have released three major updates to our white-label and we have implemented several new promo tools with simple integration steps. We have expanded our reach to new and emerging markets and we have remained consistent at delivering on our promise to be the best live cam affiliate program.
One of the biggest milestones was to target and acquire affiliates that would bring us tier one traffic in large volumes on a monthly basis. So there was an evolution process (trade secret): we asked for feedback, evaluated how well the competition was performing and developed a marketing strategy that would make XLoveCash the most appealing revshare program, while remaining financially stable. At each juncture of our marketing process, we needed to remain true to our principles: offering a strong brand to our affiliates, a long-term reward program, multiple earning possibilities, a clear and cohesive message and an incentive to recruit new partners.
Another milestone not directly related to XLoveCash has been the acquisition of the top-level domain .cam, as well as the registrar Domain.cam. Just to acquire the TLD .cam took the senior management team about five years, multiple documents and fees, while beating some well-known competitors in mainstream and adult to win the bid. We have several development goals for the registry .cam, so expect to see the domain name extension all over the web in the months and years to come. Expect a follow-up story on the background of Domain.cam in the weeks to come with XBIZ.
XBIZ: You offer a large amount of promo tools, like customizable live chats and templated sites. Based on your data and customer feedback, talk up a few of your marketing tools.
Koning: I am happy to see that you ask this question. Seldom does anyone ask us about our marketing tools. The typical interaction is generally about “what are your offers?” Our most commonly used promo tool would be our text link, which is easy to integrate and requires a basic understanding of HTML coding. Our live chat promo tool is another great way to grasp your customers’ attention by showing them a live model and the chat room feed. This also requires a basic understanding of HTML coding to integrate on your website.
One of our best converting tools is our Xclone white label. We typically encourage affiliates to set up their own webcam site, which requires having a great domain name to attract new customers that the main site may not be targeting. For the advanced developer, we have registration API, JSON, XML and RSS feed.
XLoveCash offers all the typical and advanced marketing tools for easy integration. We also do custom development in-house if there should be a specific need from one of our affiliates. It is important to note that custom development will take an unspecified time to complete.
XBIZ: Any new features/upgrades coming out soon?
Koning: We intend to enhance our Xclone white label within the coming months, where we turn over the full template administration to the affiliates. We are also exploring additional integration between XLoveCash and the .cam domain extension that would provide added value to our affiliates. We will be rolling out new promo banners in a few months and a newer version of our pop-up slide tool. At XLoveCam, the marketing team is always constantly modernizing the promo tools.
XBIZ: Why should a cam model choose your network?
Koning: Cam models are the foundation on which XLoveCam stands. Models are the main ingredients to our success and without the models, we wouldn’t have 10-plus years of success. I would like to tell all webcam models, XLoveCam loves you.
A webcam model with XLoveCam has the capacity to keep 70 percent of their sales. A webcam model sets their rates in euros and can make sales from tips, virtual gifts, interactive toys, private sessions and VIP videos, just to name a few.
As a model, you have the ability to go live with XLoveCam, as well as a competing webcam platform. Our chat box has an integrated translator to and from the members in a model’s chat session, ensuring the model is able to communicate effectively with their audience. In a nutshell, our webcam platform is a model-driven network.
XBIZ: Tell us how you partner with cam models to maximize their success.
Koning: XLoveCam attends all the established trade events to provide knowledge to all models on how best to earn using the latest techniques. We encourage our models to develop a social following, using the available tools at their disposal, seeing themselves as a brand, where self-promotion is key.
XLoveCam also pushes a model’s online status to their customers from the platform side. We take feedback from the models and implement the best ideas. For instance, we recently modified our “8hrs topless Monday” event to “24hrs topless” based on the recommendation from our models. Virtual gifts, tips in general chat and “peep in private” were also ideas that came from models on XLoveCam.
XBIZ: How do you invest in marketing for XLoveCash, either online, at trade shows or in print magazines?
Koning: An “all of the above” approach is taken to promote XLoveCash. We are promoted via Google Adsense, as well as affiliates and their websites. XLoveCam is present at all the major trade shows in Europe, North America and Canada. Nothing beats a face-to-face conversation, where you put a face behind all those emails and chat convos. We do a lot of outreach by email, Twitter and Facebook as well. Over the years, we had retreated from print media. However, we are back in the game with XBIZ, so let’s see if you bring us some new business!
Recruiting new affiliates is most likely a combination of events (adverts, print media, Twitter, Facebook, etc.). However, a face-to-face interaction at a trade show generally leads to a registration, on the spot.
XBIZ: Since you offer a range of services, from XWL white label for affiliate cam sites to cam studio services, which of these is most profitable for you?
Koning: Private chat sessions are our most profitable product. I believe this is the case with most webcam sites. We charge a minimum of 0.99 euro per minute. Models on our platform are also free to set their prices, which increases greater flexibility on our webcam platform. Plus, they are guided on how best to keep a session engaging for both parties involved. We have also made the freemium aspect of our chat very lucrative, so models can earn while in general chat with tips, virtual toys, virtual gifts and VIP videos.
XBIZ: Where do you devote most of your resources?
Koning: We dedicate most of our resources to enhancing the end user’s experience on the mobile and desktop versions of our site. We have optimized the mobile experience to simulate the full desktop experience as much as possible for models, affiliates and consumers alike. And, we work to ensure that all aspects of the site are working properly. At times, we will innovate and/or implement new features while keeping a pulse on new developments in the industry.
XBIZ: What is your strategy for staying ahead of the curve in this highly competitive live cam market?
Koning: We promote our brand in the form of digital and print media, attend all the major trade shows, recruit new models and affiliates to our network, implement the right innovations to serve their intended audience, remain engaged with our social following and invest in affiliate and model retention. In a nutshell, we remain true to our core operating values, to provide a world-class experience for all users by creating a stable and safe online environment. When the models and members are happy to use our platform, then we have a winning philosophy.