only fans, the London-based content subscription platform where creators can earn money from ‘fans’, is dropping its ‘after dark’ association and increasingly attracting brands drawn to the opportunity that the site represents to reach a wide range of target consumers. Known primarily for its association with adult video stars and sex workers such as escorts and webcam models, for which it has been criticized, the company has over 2 million content creators and 130 million followers. users. As the platform continues to grow its base, it is looking to shed its somewhat explicitly pornographic image to become a marketing channel on par with platforms that also have over a hundred million users.
The site’s growth has been spurred by all the controversy surrounding it, especially as popular millennial influencers like Bella Thorne are turning to the platform for increased engagement and a new way to monetize their large and passionate audience. Beyonce even the platform was discontinued last year, leading to a massive surge in subscriptions for months after the release of its “Wild (Remix).“Through the service, content creators can receive funding directly from their fans, either through a monthly subscription, through tips, or with a unique pay-per-view feature. Given the range of options and the deep audience base, it was only a matter of time before brands started migrating, especially as user and “fan” expectations content continues to evolve from X-rated material to more behind-the-scenes and exclusive access offerings.
Brands that have launched deals on Only Fans are having fun with it, taking a more tongue-in-cheek approach to content marketing than they perhaps would on other platforms. Sichuan chili sauce brand direct to consumer Fly by Jing, for example, used the platform to share videos of “hot noodles,” a noodle play, and other “naughty” images, as well as the more standard fare of behind-the-scenes food content, questions – business responses and kitchen experiences. For every follower the brand earns on the site, it has pledged to donate $1 to organizations supporting the rights of sex workers. Food brands in general seem to be having the most fun on the platform, with vices food-focused sub-brand Snacks also joining the site and charging its fans a monthly subscription of $4.99 for access to videos as well as collaboration with Carl’s Jr. & Hardee’s promote brands new hand breaded chicken sandwiches. Sticky’s Finger Joint has also had fun running a free account where any donations or tips given by fans are forwarded to the Relief Opportunities for All Restaurants (ROAR) New York-based hospitality fund.
It’s not all gravy and silliness, however. Celebrities Cardi B and Michael B. Jordan are both on the platform, and designer Rebecca Minkoff streamed its New York Fashion Week Fall 2021 show on Only Fans. Users were able to get behind-the-scenes access to the event, including chatting with the designer, for a fee ranging from $5 to $25.
With brands, influencers and celebrities already flocking to social platforms like clubhouse Where Cameo, alongside legacy sites like Facebook, instagram, Snapchat, pinterest, Where ICT Tacand increasingly making these new media ecosystems the centerpiece of their marketing efforts, it’s no surprise that Only Fans is finding success in expanding its audience and reach.
This article originally appeared in PSFK’s report, Driving Social Media Marketing Engagement