Get a Towel and Dry Off, These Studios are Hot
Where only a few years ago, a new company breaking in faced a seemingly reasonable amount of competition, now the market is overflowing with websites (and many other platforms) offering low budget, discount porno, or triple-X material absolutely gratis.
Despite these and other hurdles, some concerns do manage to not only break in, but to thrive in the retail and online arenas, drawing new fans and supplying them with top notch porn that’ll keep them coming back. Have these “hot” companies cracked some kind of how-to-succeed-in-the-adult-business code? Is it random luck? Or maybe it’s an Abraham Lincolnesque work ethic.
We asked five companies with sulphuric track records to open up about how they do business, and how they stay on the cutting edge of with increasingly sharp competition.
For fans of females, fresh, young and Down Under, abbywinters.com has been the go-to site for the last eight years and is growing all the time. The focus is on sweet, natural and astonishingly “real” looking ladies, who also have a very real penchant for doing things to themselves and others while wearing little or no clothing. Winners of two Best Adult Website awards from the Australian Adult Industry Awards, the site’s unique niche is in direct contrast to the vast majority of what Porn Valley, U.S.A. churns out.
“It’s another approach to adult entertainment, as opposed to the U.S. model of how many holes can we fill with how many devices, and how goofy can I look and how big can my tits be?”
abbywinters.com marketing consultant Kat Sunlove. “There’s a lot of artificiality in most adult, which is not what the abby model is.”
Specializing in girl-on-girl and masturbation, the company posts five new scenes per week of amateur Aussie babes going at it; the site claims that for nearly all of the models, this is the first time the gal has gotten naked in front of a camera. With close to 3,000 videos available on the site, the wealth of virginal material has made it amazingly popular.
“What abby winters has is almost its own community in the sense that they have very interactive conversations via chat rooms with the models and the fans,” explains Sunlove. “It’s regular and people love it. It helps to develop a personal relationship with the fans. And we do a lot of surveys of members and let them know about new ideas well in advance of enacting them to get feedback.”
At abbywinters.com, the secret words are quality and focus. “I think the success is based on the fact that people are still going to pay for good, quality content,” says Sunlove. “Even though there’s a lot of free stuff out there most of it is not very good. With abbywinters.com we know how to do what we do, and do it very well.”
abbywinters.com DVDs are distributed via Wicked Pictures.
You’ve got to hand it to Brazzers; when it comes to self-image, they aren’t sheepish. The company’s web site at Brazzers.com proclaims it “The World’s Best Pornsite!” Though “the best” may be arguable, a quick glance at the undeniable level of sexual talent available on Brazzers’ pages is stunning, to say the least.
Launched in 2004, the Montreal-based Internet concern specializes in chronicling gorgeous women with extremely large gazongas. Names like Nikki Benz, Rachel Starr, and Gianna Michaels are among the lengthy list of “highest rated” porn stars, and Brazzers offers red hot, top quality material updated by three scenes a day.
“We launched with two sites, Doctor Adventures.com and JugFuckers.com,” Backend Manager Yancee McDonald said. “Since then, most of our content has revolved around the big tit models, and the big tit niche is what we basically feature on all of our sites.”
Brazzers currently has 20 sites for its nearly 250,000 members, including Mommy Got Boobs, Jizz on My Juggs, Busty and Real, and Big Wet Butts, which has plenty of tits as well. Using talent culled from the usual model agencies and some independent solicitations, Brazzers keeps it fresh.
“We have production companies in L.A. and Las Vegas where we shoot anywhere from 16 to 18 scenes a month,” McDonald said. “They ship us the material and we prepare it here in our headquarters in Montreal. It’s nice here, we’re kind of away from the scene and all the politics and the gossip.”
The company keeps in touch with members via forums where they can comment, critique and submit script ideas, which Brazzers uses, along with parodies of hit mainstream films. “The stars appreciate it because we have fun creative material,” McDonald said. “It’s all about keeping everybody happy.”
Brazzers’ DVDs are distributed through Jules Jordan Video.
Those who’ve lapped up the high quality, award-winning product that Digital Playground has released over the years (as well as newcomers to the brand) have welcomed director Robby D’s personal imprint, Handheld Pictures, with open arms.
Though still pumping out supremely hot porn for the Playground, workaholic D has managed to wear all the hats in churning out 23 releases in less than two years, on a once a month release schedule. To date his work is twisted and stellar, particularly his “Ass Addiction” series.
‘It’s real simple,” he said of Handheld’s origins. “I’m loyal and a team player. I’ve been at DP for five years, and if you work hard enough you get rewards. Digital obviously leans toward the mainstream side of the adult business, they’re the leaders in it. Handheld is directly targeted at the rain coater, which I am, deep down. I’m still the biggest porn fan. I believe in the business and I love being a part of it. To get to own my own product and do it my way is the reward that Digital gave me for my hard work.”
Despite his name and experience in the business, D admits that the road to success is not an easy one these days.
“Five or six years ago it was easier to take off with brand new product, but now the market is just so saturated and there’s so much competition with low priced product it can be a struggle,” he said. “I consider myself to be in the top tier of directors, but it’s still tough, because the general consumer doesn’t know that, and he’s being bombarded by all the free stuff both in a store and online.”
D is both a creator and fan, and his utter dedication is what appears to make the difference. “I’m a true pervert, it’s still extremely fun, and the skill and mindset I’ve acquired with my work at Vivid and Digital Playground, I can pull from all that to create what I think is the greatest pants-around-your ankles porn.”
Since its inception three years ago, Incredible Digital claims to have snared over 100,000 members, attracting them with a variety of what marketing director Glenn calls “non-vanilla porn.” The European-based company offers content shot mainly in New York and Latin America starring newcomers to adult.
“We go where the industry is not really established, and the models that we get are first timers, never seen before, so that’s really helped us in acquiring a brand for ourselves as producers of unique content,” Glenn said. “These are girls that are not readily available anywhere on the net. Therefore, surfers look at the site and are attracted to girls they’ve never seen before, not saturated throughout the net. That’s really helped us to stand out.”
A fast-paced organization, Incredible Dollars launches two sites per month on two separate networks. “As for DVD, we’re releasing four to six a month through IVD,” explains Glenn. Another jewel in the company’s crown is the upcoming partnership with Evan Seinfeld. “It’s called RockstarPimp.com, we’re using Evan’s name instead of Spyder Jonez, and he’s been shooting with the hottest girls in the biz,” Glenn offered. The company keeps tabs on the needs of its members with “a three pronged attack, utilizing conversion ratios — which is the amount of hits versus the amount of sales made — trailer clicks and member area polls.” It may sound like a Wall Street formula, but that’s what it takes to stay on top, admitted Glenn. “These days, the competition is fierce.”
Spearmint Rhino Films
In the kingdom of gentlemen’s clubs, the name Spearmint Rhino is long established and respected. With some 30 clubs in Australia, England, the States and soon Canada, now the company is making a bid for the adult film market as well, launching successfully seven months ago. What was the motivation behind branching out into film via retail (at the moment) with an online presence in the works?
“We saw it as a good opportunity and natural progression to cross promote and get into the film industry,” said Spearmint Rhino President and COO Kathy Vercher. “It would help us brand our name into other areas and states where we currently do not have gentlemen’s clubs.” The Rhino brand has two lines with three volumes available of each, “Unlocked” and “Sweat,” an interracial and vignette series respectively. Vercher is currently looking into new directors with a focus on a gonzo line.
“It really hasn’t been a major leap,” she said of the jump into film. “Though it is a different business, of course. You’re learning new players and new rules, but like with any other business, you learn what it is that you’re doing, grab it and move on. Spearmint Rhino has such a respected name to begin with it was easy for us to come in and find people that want to work for us. And we have a great staff that we inherited when we purchased Ninn Worx.”
Another factor has been the company’s experience with talent, having used porn stars as features almost exclusively.
“Since we always booked porn talent, it was easy to get them to work in our films,” Vercher explained. “They knew we were a trusted company. We own a bookstore too, so that’s helped in that we can see what the audience is looking for. We’re one of the big boys in the gentlemen’s club world, and we want to be one of the big boys in the film industry.”