Are the products of the Velv'Or brand erotic products for men? Or are they rather intimate jewellery? Or maybe lifestyle products? The answer: They are a combination of all of the above, topped off with clear branding, stylish designs and shapes, top-notch quality, and great functionality for men and their little friends. Now, the creator of the Velv'Or brand, Jelle Plantenga, introduces two new collections to the market, thrilling not only the world of men, but also the trade.
Brands often stand for a certain state of mind or lifestyle, which is also reflected in the brand communication. In the case of Vel'Or, the focus is on a combination of “soft“ and “hard“. “Those are two aspects all men have in common and that are adored by their partners,“ explains Jelle Plantenga,
the creator of the brand.
„Many of the Velv'Or products are created to make manhood harder, healthier, and more beautiful. They contribute to making the user feel more manly and confident in life.“ Some of the structures of the Velv'Or brand are very similar to those found in fashion brands. The product range is divided into two collections: the Bespoke collection includes the King JCobra, the JCobra, the JMamba, the JPython, and the JConfessor. “All the products in this exclusive collection are individually created for the consumer or store, made from a precious metal of their choice.
These items can be categorised as high-end pleasure lifestyle products and function as intimate jewellery.“
The Ready to Wear collection includes the JBoa, the JNaja, and the BeauGosse BG's. You could put those products in the same category, and they are used in pretty much the same way. However, they are made for the mass market and are distributed via a selection of distributors and a wide range of retailers all over the world. What all Velv'or products have in common is that they are created for men with a touch of style, but every item has its own distinct characteristics. The JCobra, for instance, has a unique ergonomic shape, with a finger part that not only exerts pressure on the perineum, but also gives the product the look of an art object. “Velv'Or was created out of a personal need, the same reason so many other lifestyle brands come into existence,“ Jelle Plantenga says, explaining the origin story of his brand. “In the fashion industry, it is common practice that the designer feels the need to make a clothing item if he doesn't find it on the market. For Velv'Or, it was my need to find a stylish cock ring that was comfortable to wear and applied pressure on the perineum. The result was the JCobra.“ You may already have guessed it, but Jelle had been working in the fashion industry before he founded Velv'Or. And he is also an expert for brands. “Our world is built on brands and logos, and this will continue for a very long time. We know that the impact that brands have will continue to gain momentum – also in the erotic market.“ The consumers are already used to buying
brands, and they make their purchasing decisions based on that when they look for a quality product.
“Maybe if they are looking for their first product or a simple gift, they might not be concerned about brands so much. But when it comes to a product they want to use for a longer period of time, then the brand is definitely an important decision-making aspect. We found that many men purchase Velv'Or products because they appreciate the branding, quality, and functionality of these items.“ When asked about Velv'Or's rapid ascent to success, Jelle points out the positive feedback he gets from the market and also from the consumers – whom he lovingly calls “EnRinged fans“ of his brand. “These gentlemen appreciate everything Velv'Or is creating for them, at whatever price, and they firmly believe in the brand and the performance of all of the products, be it the JCobra or the BeauGosse – they know the quality is high and that we put a lot of time and thought into these products.“ So he knows exactly what the existing buyers and potential new Velv'Or fans are expecting from the brand: They want more than just a product with a certain degree of quality; they want first-class functionality that will improve their intimate life. “Velv'Or stands for the life of men and their manhood, so the products will always be directly serving their manhood, or have a beneficial effect for the user's manhood.“
But achieving this success was not easy, as Jelle remembers. The first step is always the hardest. When he first introduced the JCobra to the market and the trade, the average heterosexual customer was not all that well-informed about love toys and didn't know what to expect from this product in particular. That was – and still is, the Dutch designer adds – the biggest difference between the straight market and the gay market where there are countless different products for any type of need. “Luckily, brands like Nexus, Aneros, Fleshlight, Tenga, Oxballs, Perfect Fit, KeepBurning, Zizi, and others like them have the same mind-set as Velv'Or when it comes to creating more awareness for male products.“ As a matter of fact, the JCobra was created particularly for that purpose: to change the way men – and also women – look at penis rings and intimate jewellery, introducing them to stylish top-quality products. The JCobra was followed by the JNaja and the JBoa, and now, Velv'Or presents the BeauGosse BG's to give people an impression of what penis rings and ball stretchers should look like in the year 2013. “The BG's will be sold as a set, giving men an opportunity to gain new experiences. Many men, especially heterosexuals, have never used a cock ring or ball stretcher in their life, and we know that the BG's will get these men to try and enjoy the feeling of being enRinged.“ The BG's are made of elastic TPR, and each set consists of three rings. One is just for the penis, the second “enrings” the entire manhood, and the third one is a ball stretcher. For Jelle, creating products and combining different aspects such as shape, style, and function, has become a natural thing by now. After all, those are also the things he is looking for in products when he goes shopping. “I know that my needs are similar to the needs of many men who think alike, and who appreciate a high level of quality in products and design.“ What may sound simple enough is actually the result of a lot of time-consuming market research, hard lessons, and continuous indefatigable development. Those things, Jelle says, are incredibly important to optimise existing products and to create new things based on popular interests and developments in the market. “Often, we get requests from enRinged gentlemen who ask us to create a JNaja made of steel, wood, or even carrot fibre,“ he says, happy about the feedback and suggestions from the Velv'Or fans. “Apart from my own influence on the development of the products and the packaging, the collaboration with outstanding production companies is very important as well. They have a huge amount of knowhow, and they can always offer advice on certain aspects in order to improve my ideas.“
Given the stylish, classy look and feel of the Velv'Or products, it is not surprising at all that the packaging is one of the main pillars of the brand's overall concept. The packaging is the first thing the customer sees in the store, before he learns about the brand, before he learns about the actual product. However, mastermind Jelle tells us, that is not even the main reason why he sets such great store by quality packaging. He feels it is essential to maintain a uniform appearance; the look and feel of a brand should be consistent so the retailers and the consumers immediately know what they see. Naturally, small variations are always possible, and given the growing product range they are also inevitable, but Jelle wants to keep the same general look for the collections.
Talking about collections: The Bespoke line is geared towards the luxury market and offers people with bigger wallets an opportunity to get something truly extraordinary. The King JCobra is a perfect example for this. The price is not limited, and if you want the most exclusive and expensive model, the price tag can even hit the one million euro mark. The Ready to Wear and the Manhood collections are more affordable for the average consumers, as these products can be found in the mid-price segment of the erotic market. All the items are available from Velv'or's distribution partners: Dark Ink, Dildos Assorted, Entrenue, EroPartner, Lovely Planet, Mister B, Planet Earth, Playroom, and Erotic Wholesales for the Ready to Wear collection.
But will the consumer readily and happily reach deeper into his pocket for a quality product? Given that the market for cock rings is swamped with products, this question is only logical. “There will always be competition in a market, and the consumers will always make the decision on their own, based on personal affection for a brand or product.
At Velv'Or, we know that the JCobra and JNaja are unique in their design and functionality, and that there are no products out there that even come close to them. That said, we are actually pleased to see similar products hitting the market, because it shows that we were right in thinking that there is a need for a product like this in the market. The BeauGosse BG'S may look similar to other products that are on the market, but the design of the inner core of these cock rings makes the difference in wearability and in the pressure,“ Jelle points out.
Apart from the BeauGosse BG's, Velv'Or also has another new collection called Manhood, this one being the result of a collaboration with Cobeco Pharma. Said cooperation is very similar to the well-known collaborations between big fashion companies and producers from the perfume or beauty markets in the lifestyle industry. “This collaboration will give the retailers eight new Velv'Or products wrapped in amazing packaging, and the ability to rapidly expand their Velv’Or range with products for which there is growing demand.“ These products include various lubricants, a food supplement for the penis, a penis cleaner, a penis delay spray, and an after shave gel. Interested trade members have the opportunity to take a closer look at these two collections at eroFame where Velv'Or is going to present all the new products. The BeauGosse BG's will be available from Eropartner - one of the brand’s European distribution partners – as of mid-October. The other distributors will have the product on stock soon after. Manhood will also be available starting mid-October at Cobeco.
The new BeauGosse BG'S and Manhood collections are proof of the brands ambition to grow and gain a much bigger market share, in the adult industry as well as in the mainstream market, Jelle points out. Hence, expectations are rather high. “At Velv'Or, we firmly believe in all our products, and we know that the new products will open a lot of new doors and create an even better awareness of the brand. Velv'Or offers something different, something that will enrich the stores and create new consumer interest. We believe that there is still a huge gap to be filled, and we offer retailers the opportunity to fill this gap with our products. Also, we have the feeling that the market for male products will develop strongly in the future, and that the sales figures will get closer to those in the market for female products.”
But how should the retailers present the Velv'Or products, Jelle? Of course, the expert has some advice for the trade: The JBoa, he explains, is a very good product to be sold in the counter area, as it is known to generate many impulse purchases. In general, the Velv'Or products should be presented together, and with the new BeauGosse BG's and the upcoming Manhood collection, these items should make for a nice niche in the stores. As far as the online trade is concerned, Velv'Or offers appealing images and illustrations for examples of use. “In a world with a rapidly developing social network community, it is very important that the retailers support a brand by posting reviews, tests, or messages about the products. Therefore, we are working on new, amazing photographs and artwork which we are going to provide to the trade so they can use it to get the message out. And apart from that, we will offer in-store displays very soon.“