The following is just some ideas based on my own research and opinions. Please consider the possibility that anything I tell you here could be incorrect. It’s worth using multiple reputable sources and fact checking any information that matters to you. Make your own critical assessment of how reliable each information source is, not just for sex work related information but for everything.
WHICH ESCORT DIRECTORIES SHOULD I ADVERTISE ON?
The answer to this depends on your location. Searching the web for the words “escort directory” plus the name of your location will return a list of hundreds of directories but the top results are not necessarily the ones that will get you clients. Just because a directory appears to have a lot of escorts listed for your location, doesn’t mean it’s any good. It is common for new directories to scrape other directories and harvest pictures and bios of escorts to list on their directory long before any real escorts or clients start using their site. I recommend you search the web for “independent escort” plus the name of your location and scroll down past all the directories until you find an independent escort who has their own website. Chances are, if that escort has managed to get their own site that high up in search results, they are well established and successful and have ads on the best directories for your location. Go to their site and copy and paste their mobile number into a new search. The directories that appear in that search are more likely to be the ones where you want to advertise. If the directory seems to be well regarded, then post an ad there.
HOW MUCH SHOULD I CHARGE?
Nobody can answer this for you. You might want to charge ten times higher than the average rate for your area and only see one client per month. Or you might want to charge one tenth of the average rate and see a dozen guys per day. But step one is to at least figure out what the average rate for your area is. I recommend you start by finding popular directories as per the first frequently asked questions (FAQ) above, then try to refine a search of that directory so you see results matching other escorts who appear similar to how you plan to promote yourself. Look at as many ads as possible, from a number of different escort directories that are as similar as possible to your own intended escort persona, and figure out what the average rate is from there. One thing I would recommend is that you decide on rates you are happy with, list those rates on your ad and don’t allow anyone to haggle. There is an alternate approach which is to not list rates and then negotiate with each guy who contacts you to try and set an appointment at a rate they are willing to pay. Even if this does generate more business, I think this is a good way to quickly burn out. Having people haggle with you is very unpleasant and the kind of guys who want to haggle are likely to be disrespectful in other ways. I would never operate my business this way and highly recommend listing your rates and sticking to them.
SHOULD I MAKE MY OWN WEBSITE?
Yes and No. Having your own personal website is the best way to promote yourself. It shows you’re established, genuine and professional. It’s cheap and easy to buy a domain name and hosting and build a site on a site builder e.g. WordPress. If you need help, there are plenty of skilled professionals you can pay to help you. I recommend you pay directly for your own domain name and hosting. Don’t let a webmaster register your domain and hosting in their own name. Your website is going to be very precious to you and you’ll want to own it and have freedom to edit it yourself, move the hosting, and do whatever you like without a webmaster holding your site to ransom. If you pay someone to help with your site and they prove to be unreliable or incompetent, you’ll want to be able to discontinue paying them and find someone else to do the work instead. Much easier to do this if you own your domain and hosting. The best SEO to get your site to rise up in the search results is to post unique, quality content that people enjoy reading regularly on a blog page on your site using the kinds of keywords in the posts that people will search for when they want an escort like you. However, you can rely on established escort directories like OnlyRuns to advertise your services.
HOW CAN I PROTECT MY IDENTITY?
My number one recommendation here is don’t use the same device for work and personal. Buy a second mobile phone as a work phone and never use your work phone for anything personal / never use your personal phone for anything work related. If you add your clients to a contact list on your personal phone where you also have your friends and family listed as contacts then use that phone to register for work related site like directories, make work related social media accounts etc. and then use that same phone to log in to personal sites and apps e.g. your personal Facebook, it’s just a matter of time before you get outed as an escort to your personal contacts. Social media apps like Facebook especially like to access your contacts list and spy on what you’re doing in other apps and on other sites. If you mix work and personal on one device, Facebook, twitter, Instagram etc. will happily recommend your escort page as a friend for your family members. Make a work email. I recommend proton mail. Never use your personal number or personal email to register for anything work related. You probably don’t want your clients to be able to search the web for your number and find your real name, personal social media etc. You probably also don’t want your friends and family to search the web for your number and find all your escort ads. If you use the same laptop for work and personal, at least use two browsers.
WILL I STILL GET CLIENTS IF I DON’T KISS?
Yes. If kissing or any other service makes you uncomfortable, you’ll be better off in the long term not offering it. Forcing yourself to do something you hate isn’t sustainable.
DO I HAVE TO SHOW MY FACE IN MY ADS?
No. Some percentage of clients will only see escorts who show their faces in ads so blurring or cropping or altering your pics in some way to conceal your face will mean that you don’t get those clients but it is absolutely possible to make a lot of money as an escort without showing your face in your ads. Whether you do or don’t is your decision to make. Argument for = you’ll get more clients. Argument against = once your face pics are on the internet, they could stay there forever and prove impossible to remove. Facial recognition and reverse image search technology is already highly advanced and in future who knows what this technology will be like.
WHEN SHOULD I ASK FOR MONEY?
Cash up front. You might also want to ask for a deposit prior to meeting.
SHOULD I ASK FOR A DEPOSIT?
Some do, some don’t. A deposit could be anything up to about 50% of your rate. The advantage of asking for a deposit is that guys who have paid a deposit are much more likely to actually show up to their appointment. If they’ve paid a deposit and don’t show up, at least you have some compensation for time you wasted getting ready and for holding that timeslot which another genuine client might have wanted. The disadvantage is that you might be perceived as a scammer. Especially if you’ve just started out and have only one or a few directory ads and no personal website or history of social media posts and reviews. Then it might look like you’re catfishing using a fake ad just to pocket the deposits. An alternative to a deposit for an outcall is to make the client book and pay for a taxi to pick you up from your address and take you to theirs. And for incalls if they’ve booked a day or more in advance, if you message them on the morning of the day they’re due to see you and ask “are you definitely coming to see me today?” the timewasters usually won’t reply.
WHAT’S A TIMEWASTER?
Someone who contacts escorts pretending they’re interested in booking an appointment who in fact has no intention of ever showing up to said appointment. They want you to entertain them for free on the phone or by exchanging messages or pictures. If someone contacts you and they get straight to the point about where and when they want to meet and they don’t try to chat or ask for pictures, they’re more likely to be genuine. If they don’t mention a day, time or location and seem reluctant to discuss these details but excited about asking you for explicit details about yourself or your services, they’re probably just wanking. In which case I recommend offering the option to pay for a chat session. e.g. “which day and what time would you like to see me? Do you want an incall or an outcall?” or “if you just want to chat please send GHS XXX and I’ll chat to you for XXX minutes.” Then hopefully they’ll book an appointment or pay for a chat session but if they keep trying to chat for free just block their number.
HOW CAN I TAKE PAYMENTS OTHER THAN CASH?
I’m no expert on the ones other sex workers use but from other people’s recommendations it looks like MTN Mobile Money is popular. Also Vodafone Cash. Beware of the possibility that clients could dispute a payment and get their payment reversed.
WHAT ABOUT PHOTOSHOOTS?
There’s a huge price range of professional photoshoots out there. You can get quite a cheap shoot e.g. from one of the apps and get them retouched by yourself. Or pay thousands for a top photographer and rent a hotel suite for the shoot location. And everything in between.
Ring lights are also popular and not expensive. It’s a tripod with a clip that will hold any phone and comes with a ring shaped light that can cast an adjustable light on you and they usually come with a Bluetooth remote that you can pair with your phone so you can take multiple pics in different poses without running backwards and forwards to press the camera button on a timer. If you look at other people’s pics for ideas for poses and get some good poses and angles with good lighting and the camera held steady on the tripod you can get some decent pics that way especially with the top of the range new phones. There are a lot of “photographers” who will contact you offering cheap, or free, photoshoots, especially if they can see that you’re new. I don’t know anyone who’s accepted one of these offers but I’m guessing if you did accept a free shoot from some guy with a camera calling himself a photographer, you’d most likely get a few poor shots taken from someone who has no idea what they’re doing and something other than photography on their mind.
CAN I SELL MY VIRGINITY?
Sites claiming to facilitate sales of virginity are all scams as far as I know. If you mention any kind of youth or inexperience in an escort ad, especially virginity, you’ll attract a variety of scumbags who do not have your best interests at heart. All manner of timewasters, hagglers, boundary pushers and much worse will see you as a vulnerable target.
HOW DO I MAKE MONEY FROM VIDEO SEX?
Pay before play. Ensure you have received the money before you perform. Do not scam the client as it will negatively affect your reviews.