Next month marks adult industry veteran John Desjardins’ second year as vice president and general manager of LFP Internet Group. Desjardins supervises all Hustler Internet operations excluding its ecommerce business, which is maintained by the retail division. He previously served as director of Internet operations at Evil Angel, director of online products for Danni.com and operated Adult Boost, a development and industry service-based company.
XBIZ World sat down with Desjardins and asked him a few questions.
Today it takes a lot more effort, hard work and knowledge to run a successful online adult company. Regulations have changed the way people conduct business, as has the consolidation of the industry.
XBIZ: How did you venture into the adult industry?
DESJARDINS: I started in the adult industry back in 1998 when I became the webmaster for my girlfriend’s website. She was doing a lot of modeling for companies such as Penthouse and Perfect 10 magazine so it made sense to create her own website (interestingly enough, she even appeared in some of Hustler’s magazines like Taboo and Barely Legal). From there I started a second company with a couple friends and began shooting exclusive amateur content out of our house in San Diego. We went on to build many other paysites and launched a couple affiliate programs. Back then we had a tight circle of webmasters that were working together to feed traffic to each other to help grow our businesses. In those days it would have been hard not to make money.
XBIZ: What’s a typical work day like?
DESJARDINS: Working for Hustler is definitely an exciting challenge that has me handling a wide variety of tasks on a daily basis. Aside from answering the numerous emails and phone calls on a daily basis, I spend a lot of my time working directly with my department heads to make sure we are meeting our goals and project deadlines. I also spend time working on new business opportunities, developing new projects with our team and coordinating our overall direction. Working for such a large corporation also means I have many meetings with the senior management across all departments at LFP. I pretty much hit the ground running every morning.
XBIZ: In the 14 years you’ve been in the industry, do you think the biz has matured greatly?
DESJARDINS: The business has definitely matured since I started. Today it takes a lot more effort, hard work and knowledge to run a successful online adult company. Regulations have changed the way people conduct business as has the consolidation of the industry.
XBIZ: Any new Hustler projects around the corner?
DESJARDINS: We always have many new projects in the works. This past year we have spent a lot of time redeveloping and enhancing our backend to give our members a much better experience. We also just launched our all new mobile sites and have been working on our new tablet sites which is an expansion of our mobile initiatives. We are also venturing into the gay market soon with the launch of our “His” brand site which will be out in the next several months. Finally we are relaunching a totally updated Hustler Cash program with all new marketing tools and new programs to entice new and existing webmasters to keep promoting the Hustler brands.
XBIZ: When not thinking about the biz, what do you like to do?
DESJARDINS: I like spending most of my time with my family, either relaxing at home or bike riding at the beach. With kids, I often find myself ending up at Disneyland or some other family friendly activity ... about as different from work as it can get! I also enjoy getting out to dinner with friends to try new restaurants. Honestly though, it’s very rare that I don’t have work or some part of the business on my mind during my nights and weekends, which means I usually spend some of my downtime working or at the very least planning my next week.