The Oprah Impact On Sex Toys
When people ask me about sex toys, they often wonder if there's a perfect one for everyone – basically, a sure thing. Well, the simple answer is no; there's no such thing as a one-size-fits-all sex toy.
We all have different likes, sensitivities, and physical factors to consider. For instance, some folks have mobility challenges, others face sexual issues, and some have particular preferences or desires. There are just too many factors to claim that there's a perfect sex toy for everyone.
That's why companies selling sex toys shouldn't exaggerate their qualities. Instead, they should do what we do: give you honest details about each product. This helps you find the right one based on your preferences and what you want to experience. Most importantly, the information about sex toys should set realistic expectations and ensure they are safe for your body.
What is the Oprah Effect?
The Oprah Effect is the term used to describe the significant boost in sales that occurred after a product was endorsed on "The Oprah Winfrey Show." This TV show ran for 25 years, and when Oprah recommended something, it often turned fashion and lifestyle items into multi-million dollar businesses.
Key Points to Remember
The Oprah Effect meant that when Oprah Winfrey featured a company or individual on her daytime talk show, it led to a surge in their sales.
Several well-known figures, such as Dr. Phil and health expert Dr. Oz, got a big career boost from Oprah's support.
The Oprah Effect was influential because it came across as genuine and sincere.
Understanding the Oprah Influence
Many businesses and individuals who were fortunate enough to catch Oprah Winfrey's attention experienced rapid success after being featured on her groundbreaking television show. The show aired from 1986 to 2011 and remains the highest-rated daytime talk show in American TV history.
The power of the Oprah Effect was amplified by her genuineness. Oprah endorsed products that genuinely interested her, rather than accepting payment for promotion. Unlike typical celebrity endorsements, she championed independent family businesses.
Oprah's influence extended to television personalities like psychologist Dr. Phil, health expert Dr. Oz, and TV chef Rachael Ray, all of whom became household names with their own TV programs. She also made a significant impact on the publishing industry through Oprah's Book Club, turning books into instant bestsellers.
Today, Oprah is a billionaire and a media mogul. In 2011, she launched the Oprah Winfrey Network (OWN).
Despite not achieving instant success in every endeavor, such as her 10% investment in WW International Inc. (WW), commonly known as Weight Watchers, in 2015 – facing tough competition from mobile apps and fitness trackers – Oprah retains millions of devoted fans and enjoys high approval ratings.
The Oprah Impact on Sex Toys
Oprah's endorsements have had a remarkable impact on product sales. In 2009, Oprah promoted a sex toy on her television show, illustrating the consequences of people believing the hype surrounding these products.
It all began with Dr. Laura Berman, a sexuality expert, who received support from Oprah. She was prepared for her television show, "In The Bedroom," on the Oprah Winfrey Network (OWN) in 2013. I must mention that Laura is exceptional, and I had the privilege of appearing on her radio show years ago as a featured sex expert. We engaged in discussions about women's sexual health, female ejaculation, and shared many common viewpoints on critical issues related to sexuality.
Due to her connection with Oprah, Dr. Berman later collaborated with California Exotics to release a line of sex toys under her name, known as the Berman line. Most of these toys were of high quality, but one, in particular, didn't perform well and struggled to sell. It was called the Aphrodite, designed as a body massager.
The First Sex Toy Oprah Promoted
It was an ordinary Friday, and we, at our online store, were getting ready to finish up for the weekend on January 9, 2009. But something very unusual started happening. Around 2:30 p.m. Mountain Standard Time, we began receiving numerous orders for a particular product we didn't usually sell - the Aphrodite vibrator.
We were completely taken aback by this sudden surge in sales. Initially, we suspected it might be some kind of strange credit card fraud attempt. However, as we closely examined each individual order, we realized that they were all legitimate. What's more, we were receiving several orders for the same product every minute.
We decided to contact one of the customers who had requested expedited delivery. We asked her when she needed the product and how she had learned about it. She chuckled and replied, "Well, it was on the Oprah show today." We were stunned, realizing that we were about to be inundated with orders.
By 3:30 p.m., Oprah's show had already finished on the East Coast, was in progress on Central Time, and was about to start in our time zone. We hurried to the television to watch while our Director of Operations was making frantic efforts to secure as many Aphrodite vibrators as possible from the manufacturer and all available wholesale distributors for our incoming orders.
Because of my previous collaboration with Dr. Laura Berman, I had been keeping an eye on her activities and knew she was doing some episodes with Oprah. However, I had no idea that she would feature her products on that particular day. Interestingly, nobody in the adult novelty industry had any prior knowledge of this either. It turned out that Laura had received only two weeks' notice to inform the vibrator manufacturer, making it impossible for them to prepare for the overwhelming surge in sales resulting from Oprah's endorsement.
The Sure Thing
Oprah proudly displayed the Aphrodite and confidently declared to her audience, "This... is a reliable choice." In mere moments, women enthusiastically flocked to the internet to acquire it. After all, Oprah had given her approval.
However, there were two significant issues with this. Firstly, there were limited stocks available, and anyone familiar with the adult toy industry would have advised against promoting this underperforming vibrator as something impressive. It was, in reality, a subpar vibrator, with a major distributor revealing sales of less than twenty units annually.
When we reached out to the manufacturer to inquire about restocking, they informed us it would take at least three months, which later stretched to six due to production delays. We found ourselves inundated with orders, all while being aware of the Aphrodite's history of negative reviews. This vibrator was far from our best; in fact, we had plans to discontinue it. Thus, we were perplexed as to why it was being touted as the "reliable choice."
Frankly, we were worried that women across the United States were eagerly anticipating the sex toy endorsed by Oprah, believing it would be exceptional. However, this product fell far short of that expectation. So, the question was how to convey to people that, while we admired the Oprah show, Oprah's knowledge did not extend to sex toys.
We surmised that Oprah endorsed it because it was one of the least explicit sex toys suitable for television, as it primarily functioned as a general body massager. We had heard that Oprah had reservations about featuring any sex toy on her show, which made sense in this context.
We began educating customers about the advantages and disadvantages of the Aphrodite, cautioning them that some of its issues did not reflect the superior vibrators we offered. We encouraged them to consider upgrading to more effective body massagers for free, but regrettably, most were uninterested. Many simply said, "If Oprah says it's great, then I want it." Sadly, the majority preferred what Oprah had endorsed as the "reliable choice."
Many customers who purchased the Aphrodite later expressed regret, wishing they had taken us up on the free upgrade offer. Typically, they echoed what we had already highlighted on our website: it lacked power, had a short battery life, and couldn't be used while charging. This meant that when many frustrated women were close to climax, the power would die out, necessitating recharging. As it couldn't be used while charging, playtime would be cut short.
After fulfilling all our orders, the hype subsided, and the Aphrodite was discontinued by the manufacturer Dingfoo. This came as no surprise to us, given the technological advancements and the availability of superior vibrators in the market.
Is Any Sex Toy A Sure Thing?
As mentioned earlier, there are no sex toys that can guarantee satisfaction for everyone. There are various reasons why one vibrator may not work as well for someone as another. That's why we offer detailed guides on sex toys and encourage you to reach out if you have any questions. Ultimately, we prioritize quality over marketing hype and urge you to explore the genuine solution – a customized sex toy tailored to your preferences.