In this post, we are speaking with Conde Aumann of THE SCREAMING O who was recently honored for the second year in a row at the XBIZ Awards as the Brand Ambassador of the Year for 2015. Conde is a terrific representative for her company and the industry. You will find a number of Screaming O products in our store, particularly in our Beginner Collection. Screaming O specializes in fun and affordable. In honor of this interview we are offering for a limited time a 15% discount on Screaming O products when you use coupon code CONDE.
What is the appeal of your product?
Our company strives to offer products that are fun, low-cost, easy-to-use and appealing to the masses. Many of them are perfect for someone who has never tried any type of sex toy before - making Screaming O products an excellent choice for beginners and more experienced users alike.
What differentiates your products from those of your competitors?
One thing that really makes us different isn't something that would be visible by looking at the products. Early in 2015, we decided to contract with a laboratory here in the US (Polymer Solutions) and send them samples of our various products to test that they are indeed made of the material they are said to be made of as well as test for any type of toxicity or anything that could affect a consumer negatively. The tests came back showing that all of our materials are what we say they are (our 3 primary materials are: (1) SEBS, (2) Silicone or (3) ABS) as well as being body-safe! I am pretty sure we are the only company in the industry to have done something like that - we wanted to have our own peace of mind as well as be able to let our customers have the same. I have attached a PDF file that will give you a bit more information about this testing.
Adult toys have gone much more mainstream. We see them everywhere from Walmart and Target to Rite-Aid and of course on Amazon. How has mainstream acceptance affected your business and how you develop products?
I think for us, it's not something we can see directly as we really don't have our items placed in most of these mainstream locations. HOWEVER - in general, the more people we can get interested in trying toys - and maybe starting at a place like Walmart - the more likely they are to shop in an adult store or an adult online store and that bigger audience increases business for everyone!
How has Amazon affected your business?
I know that some of our indirect customers sell on there but since they purchase our items from a distributor, it's hard to say how much is sold on Amazon or how it is directly affecting our business.
Because of increased demand, markets tend to see more counterfeit products available. Have you seen a lot of cheaper knock-offs particularly from overseas?
I have seen cheaper knock-offs around and I know of customers who have tried them out and been disappointed with the overall quality. Not only do we test our materials here in the US at a lab, at the assembly level, each product is tested 3 separate times to ensure we have as low of defective rates as possible. You are NOT going to find that attention to detail with a knock-off.
Besides wider acceptance, how has industry changed in last 10 years? 20 years?
I think it has definitely become more "female friendly" for sure! Back in the day, most adult stores were not a place that most women would want to set foot in. There has been a trend over the last 10+ years that has many stores becoming more like a boutique and offering events and education that bring women and couples in to expand their knowledge base together and have better sex.
How do your products enhance customers' experiences?
I like to compare sex toys to pizza (pizza you say?? what??) But think about your usual sex routine like a pepperoni pizza... pepperoni pizza is great! BUT - you can't just have pepperoni every single time..... but - you can play around with other TOPPINGS! Sex toys are like the other topping options on a pizza and help to make things fun and interesting! Most of our products are made for couples to enhance what is likely already a great time!
What would you like customers to know about your products and company that marketing materials might not adequately communicate?
I would definitely go back to the materials and general product testing that happens "behind the scenes" to ensure low defective rates as well as having the comfort of knowing that you are getting a quality product that is body safe.
What are three products in your line that you think do not get enough recognition?
One product that I wish would get more recognition is our Scream & Clean Toy Cleaner... when we launched this a few years ago, we purposely looked for a more natural way to cleanse the toys and found it with a citrus extract! When we looked around at what was generally out in the market, we found that most companies were using something called triclosan as their cleanser. If you are not familiar with this ingredient, I would highly recommend you to look it up online and all the issues happening with the overuse of it.
Who is your target market?
Our target market is pretty wide - ages 18 to 80 (and beyond). Pretty much anyone who would like to spice up their sex life and doesn't want to get too crazy or spend a ton of money to do it!
With the trend of Americans' expanding waistline, have you had to make accommodations?
The only product(s) that I can think of that this would really affect for us would be our wireless remote panty products. In order to accommodate as wide a scope as possible, we made the panty have stretchy side ties that will fit up to a 60" waist! Other than that, most of our products are cock rings, bullets and bullet-toys, which are one size fits most :)
What criteria do you use in selecting your materials?
We first mock up new products and then figure out which material would work best for how stretchy or flexible we would like it to be.
How do you test/evaluate your products?
For "how cool is it" testing, we all like to product test here - that also helps with telling others about the product and how it works or feels. For materials testing, we have a lab here in the US to test the materials for safety and that they are what we expect them to be.
Do you sell internationally?
We do some international sales but the US is our "bread and butter" market for sure!
Our company believes that enjoyable sexual activity is important to healthy adult lifestyle regardless of physical disability. One group of consumers whom we are trying to serve are the physically challenged. What kinds of products do you offer or recommend which can help those with physical disabilities reconnect with partners?
Our products are, in general, very "beginner" and easy to use for anyone. They are also a low price point so you can try out a few different options and see what works best for your particular situation without breaking the bank.
Customers (okay me really) are curious as to how you do product research. How do you develop products?
We have a product development person that researches sexual studies, trends, fashion, etc and then comes up with LOTS of ideas for what our next product launch will offer. We then sit down as a team to decide which ones we think will sell well. Next we get pricing and figure out if it falls into a price point we think will sell (you would be surprised how many ideas stop here because we think there is NO WAY it would sell at the amount we would need to sell it at!) Once the first products arrive, we take them home and test them to make sure they do what we expect and if so - we launch them to the public!