Bad Dragon, the interview [en]

Bad Dragon is specialized in fantasy sextoys, fancy a tour? At Eklecty-city we love everything pop culture and for Valentine’s day I thought I’d give you an interview of Bad Dragon. Except I underestimated the importance of such a day for a sextoys manufacturer. So with all my apologies and quite a bit of delay, here is Bad Dragon, the interview.

 

Origins:

First of all can you quickly introduce Bad Dragon to our readers who may not know it ?

Bad Dragon is a fantasy based adult toy company based out of Phoenix, AZ. We have been in existence since 2008 and specialize in toys of a fantastical nature, like dragons, gryphons, werewolves, etc.

Who founded BD and when?

We were founded in 2007 by Jan Mulders (also known as Varka), who was attending university in the UK when he decided on a whim to grab some clay from a carving shop and create a clay model of a fantasy phallus. Before he had completed the design, he had already accumulated several orders from friends wanting to buy the finished product.

What was the initial motivation in founding BD and why dragon themed sex toys?

The initial motivation for starting Bad Dragon was a desire for more variety with fantasy based adult toys. At the time, there was only one other company doing something even remotely close to what we were doing, and our founders wanted more. We came along at the right time, as the community was ready for more variety as well.

What is your philosophy (« moto » if you prefer) if any?

We like to say our motto is “Making Fantasies Real” because we feel that is our specialty.

Customers:

Who is your target clientele? (I’m thinking, among other things, about a debate I saw on twitter with one of your followers who was convinced BD are only for Furries [1])

We have our roots in the furry fandom of course, but our target audience is anyone with a desire for something new and different that they can’t find anywhere else. Our items are most definitely not for furries alone, as we welcome all individuals to our company by providing a superior, unique product. That being said, I don’t think we can overstate how grateful we are to our core fans for giving us our start in the industry and helping to make us a success.

Do you have collectors (people buying many or most of your products)? Do you see your products as collectibles?

We have many different individuals from many different walks of life purchasing our toys, and many of them definitely see our products as collectible and artistic. There are quite a few who have over 100+ Bad Dragon models in varying sizes and colors.

I absolutely see our products as highly collectible mainly because of how much ability our customers have to make it their own through customization options, etc. I believe a lot of the appeal with our toys lies in the unique and creative qualities they exhibit.

Would you say that part of the attraction to your product is the challenge they carry? quite a few threads are about how deep, how much, etc. 

There are of course many who like the challenge of the larger than average sizes, but since we have toys in a wide range of sizes, I think our clientele are drawn to them mostly because of the high levels of customization available to them during the ordering process.

Products:

What is your most popular item?

Our most popular item would have to be our Chance model. I can’t say for sure why this is the most popular, but it’s definitely one of our best sellers.

How do you advertise your products (your website being -18, do you have any difficulties because of hypothetical limitation upheld by law or policies)?

We don’t really advertise in the traditional sense, though we have placed banner ads on some adult sites. Most of our business comes from word of mouth, which is a fantastic thing because it shows us that our product is something that people think is worth talking about. Being 18+ presents its own challenges of course, but the adult industry is adults only for a good reason, so we happily operate within those confines.

How do you decide on new design?

New designs come from a variety of sources: our design team, our marketing team, our customers who post their designs on Bad Dragon Labs (more on that later), and even from collaborative partners like Kink.com. They will often go through quite the revision process, with our best minds discussing the full range of possibilities. After it is revised to everyone’s liking, it is made as a 3D printed mold that we cast our inventory from. We then offer the new concept to product testers in-house to weigh in on the pros and cons of each design. If there are any further revisions needed, we add to or take away from that, producing the version our customers will receive.

What makes a good and successful design?

Good and successful designs are often predicated on the type of texture or shape a toy has. Some like “knots” on their toys, some prefer no knot. Some like girth, some like texture, some like length while others prefer a gentle taper. To get a perfect design is nearly impossible, as all the listed criteria doesn’t exactly mix well. Good designs will often address at least two to three of these preferences in my experience.

Do you have panel test your products before they make it to your store?

As previously mentioned, we will provide new designs to in-house product testers (which are just regular staff members familiar with our products) to get the good/bad of each toy and decide on changes before its release.

Bad Dragon Labs

Why the Lab? it’s pretty unusual – if at all ever heard of – for a sex toys designer to have customers submit new design.

Bad Dragon Labs was created to not only give a voice to our community and make them feel as if they contribute to the future of the company, but to point out little things we may overlook that our audience wants. There have been quite a few designs that went from a concept in our Labs all the way to a full fledged part of our product line. Fenrir, the Snow Leopard, and Kage were just a few of the Bad Dragon Labs winners that became part of our offerings.

How many new designs are submited to you via Dragon Lab?

We get new designs submitted to our Labs daily it seems, and they are given feedback from our community and are often changed by the creators to accommodate our audience.

Valentine’s day

What is BD’s prefect valentine’s day?

Our perfect Valentine’s Day would be one in which everyone was happy whether alone or with people they loved while enjoying whatever they love or whatever made them feel loved in an all-inclusive open-minded environment with no judgments or preconceived notions.

Do you carry gift sets?

We don’t carry gift sets that are pre-bundled but we do have a wide variety of options available for that perfect naughty adult gift basket: vibrators, lubes, toy cleaners, teenie weenies, condoms, keychains, and much more. Any or all of these would be a perfect addition to a toy order for that special someone.

I’m new to BD, I’m curious but can’t really decide, how would you convince me? and what would you recommand (so many sizes, shapes, etc.)?

As a new customer to Bad Dragon, I often encourage people to go with what they know they like. Don’t pick a really large toy if size isn’t your thing, don’t get a cum tube if you are turned off by ejaculation, etc. I often ask people at conventions what they are looking for in a toy and base my suggestions off of their wants.

How do you get a job at BD?

Getting a job with Bad Dragon was an interesting experience for me, as they found me when I was working as a server and waited on their party during a business lunch. They asked at the end of the meal whether I was happy and wanted something different from my employment. After discussing it back and forth for awhile, I was able to come aboard and I am so happy that I did, because this is hands down the best job I’ve ever had and the best company I’ve ever worked for. Our executives are truly invested in all of us and take such great care of us everyday. Everyone should be this lucky to have such an amazing job!

A million thanks to Steven A. Vest for having answered my questions.

Interview and french translation by Colin Vettier for Eklecty-City.

[1] if you have any interest in the subject I recommand The Cat, the reverend and the slave directed by Alain Della Negra et Kaori Kinoshita available at Capricci. Here is the trailer.

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