Lovehoney, for those of you that don’t know, is a huge UK online success story. It grew from the humble beginnings of a three-man team running an e-commerce sex toy store out of a self-storage unit, to the multimillion-pound online business it is today.
Here at Adult PR our team have taken a look at Lovehoney’s story. From this, we have picked out some key adult marketing techniques they used to grow into the market leader they are today.
Lovehoney was established in 2002 by two friends after they were made redundant. Between them they decided to set up an e-commerce business and were torn between selling cross stitch materials or sex toys. Eventually they opted for sex toys as they thought it would be more fun. They used most of their budget hiring a coder to get the website up and running, with the rest going on a small supply of stock.
So, how did this small amateur operation, with just a £6000 investment grow to be the UK’s most popular online sex store?
Listen to the customers
After a few years of trading out of the self-storage unit; the founders of Lovehoney found that there is definitely money to be made in the sex toy industry. So, they begun the process of making themselves different from their competitors. Lovehoney gave customers control; they asked customers to send in ideas for new toys they would like to buy. Using the customers feedback they started creating their own range of sex toys. They then became some of their best sellers and in turn developed trust with their customers.
Normalising the products
With the sex toy industry being such a taboo area for consumers; Lovehoney knew that in order to expand their customer base they needed to normalise their products. This was so that the average UK consumer would not be put off from buying them. As a result, Lovehoney employed a team of content writers to create detailed descriptions of their products. They also created original content, which proved great for their SEO!
Think outside the box
Lovehoney found out quite quickly that the traditional marketing and PR techniques didn’t work for the sex toy industry. These sorts of techniques included billboard ads. Instead, they focused their adult marketing and PR efforts elsewhere; such as clever sex toy ideas linked to national events like royal weddings, this generated great organic press which works out a lot cheaper than a T.V ad.