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Thread: The Great Debate - Gay vs. Straight

  1. #1
    You do realize by 'gay' I mean a man who has sex with other men?
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    WTF? The Great Debate - Gay vs. Straight

    Okay lets get some debating going on over here.

    The thread about the 'Gay Market' really got my creative juices going so figured it was time for another hopefully 'busy' thread.

    Looking at the marketing efforts of some of the bigger adult affiliate programs over the last few weeks has made me realize a couple of things.

    1) Most of them only have 1 or 2 gay market paysites in them.
    2) Those that do have more than one or two paysites seem to have the 'regular' gay niches like Bears, Twinks, Ebony, Asian and now, Reality sites.
    3) Many of the large programs do not have gay support reps.

    With that said, how many of you can think of a large affiliate program other than TopBucks and AEBN( :thumbsup: ) that actually put some effort into marketing their gay adult sites?

    I visit a LOT of resources and forums on a daily basis and i have to admit i dont htink i have EVER seen as much marketing effort being put into the larger affiliate programs gay paysites as they do their straight ones.

    Are these companies missing out on $$$ by not informing webmasters of the gay paysites they have available or, are the few cookie cutter gay paysites that are available only in these programs as 'token' gay sites?

    Regards,

    Lee


  2. #2
    virgin by request ;) Chilihost's Avatar
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    Our affiliate program offers 8 gay sites - run by gay guys for gay guys! And we are expanding to include more and more gay micro-niches too...but alas you don't see me on all the other boards slutting myself cuz I just don't have the time! I can hardly keep up on the activity on this board recently


    cheers,

    Luke


  3. #3
    chick with a bass basschick's Avatar
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    oh, lee - be fair. it's not about gay or straight - they put almost no effort into their straight niche sites either. some mature woman sites talk about 45 year old women like they're 90 year old grannies. they don't even seem to know that mature and granny are two different groups of surfers.

    look at their teen sites - 30 year old pornstars mixed in with a few rare 19 year old girls.

    and the text in the latest ars sites couldn't be more generic. they have no clue about their niches. you could literally plug the text of any site into another of their sites by changing the name and it would work.

    the problem is that designers don't know about niches - they design. i think it's the program owner's job to write text and make suggestions to the designer, but almost none do.


  4. #4
    fyrflygrl
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    Originally posted by Chilihost
    Our affiliate program offers 8 gay sites - run by gay guys for gay guys!
    I don't think that being gay is critical to the success of a gay site... but damn! It's an advantage I don't have

    There's no excuse for the big guys to not take care of the niches they're promoting! If I put a gay site together, I'd put my best effort forward at keeping any and all references to straight ANYTHING out of the site, and understanding the needs of my visitors...

    Let me ask: Is there any advice that you'd offer a straight girly about promoting gay? What should I absolutely NOT do on a website? Things that I absolutely SHOULD do on a website? Do you have suggestions for taking care of my gay site clients so that being straight isn't a stumbling block to best customer service?

    Lee, I hope your creative juices are up to all that :grin: I'm a flaming newb

    THANKS in advance for your honest answers :bow:

    Fyrflygrl!

    (Withholding sig until I feel our site is ready to make a good first impression on this wonderful market!!)


  5. #5
    taboo_gal
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    Albeit poorly and/or inaccurately, straight/fetish sites are at least pushed. I will have to agree that I've seen little gay site promotion on behalf of the larger programs.


  6. #6
    jhussher
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    Well, here's my two cents:

    I am gay, and I run a gay pay site ( http://blackhotboy.com ) which is the gay ebony niche. To micro-niche even further, I offer amateur content of young "thugs". No smooth professionally lit airbrushed models. Straight acting guys. Any white boys will be in the passive sexual position. And some of our content, most of which we produce ourselves, runs toward the fetish end of the spectrum, some BDSM, spanking, watersports, etc.. That kind of content is hard to find in the gay ebony/interracial niche.

    I agree that most sponsors offer little more than "cookie-cutter" gay sites, usually a bunch of white boys. <yawn> I am always seeking new sponsor sites to promo but rarely find any. I haven't found any free sponsor content/photo sets worth a damn. I usually don't even use their banners, I make my own in Fireworks.

    Except for a couple ARS BYOT's in their Gay Ebony category, I usually stick to promoting independent sites like Thugboy or CityThugz .

    You can't be everything to everybody. I see a term like "gay mega-site!!!" and I run the other way. Find a niche you are comfortable with and build for it and then market to surfers in that niche. You've heard the saying, "Do what you love and the money will come..." I started off in the adult biz as a performer on live webcam with my 18 year old black boyfriend. We made our own photo sets and videos and built up BlackHotboy around him and me. So there we were in our micro-niche: young black street boys fucking submissive white boys. And we found there was a market starving for that and we have stuck to it.

    Today, more than 3 years later, I still spend my weekends doing photo sessions with those young thugs...and then during the week I promote.

    One good avenue for promotion of a new site is the Yahoo and MSN groups, there are thousands of adult groups in every niche. Make sure you have a signup box on your site for your own newsletter so surfers' emails can be obtained...building your own opt-in list is very important, my list is over 6000 strong and still growing and is probably my most effective marketing resource.

    Get some gay people to look over your site design and take sugestions for text. I once saw a thread wherein a straight webmaster, making a venture into gay sites, asked forum readers for their opinion on several text links he wanted to use; I think one was, "Screaming queens get their asses fucked" and one was, "Faggots suck big dick". I replied and said that those were not terms that gay people appreciate seeing when they come from straight people and if he was that insensitive he'd better hold off on trying to make any money off gay surfers, because it would be obvious to gay surfers that the site's designer was NOT gay and just trying to suck some money from gay surfers. Remember that gays are a minority still fighting for respect and equal civil rights. Everyone from Anheiser-Busch to DisneyWorld now is aware that there is a lot of money in the gay community and they are all scrambling to get some.

    As a woman, you will never really understand how male-to-male gay sex feels. Do you want to market to bottom boys or tops? Different descriptive terminology applies. Even though my site is mostly black, I am chiefly marketing to white bottom boys who enjoy or fantasize about having sex with a dominant black top. Fact is, most young black street boys are NOT surfing the web and visiting my site, credit card in hand. My customers are those white boys. Visit the site and you will get an idea of what I mean.

    Also, develop an affiliate program so you aren't trying to do all the selling alone.

    Hope all this helps somewhat.

    James
    http://blackhotboy.com


  7. #7
    RainGurl
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    I do think that a lot of programs have their "token gay site" or sites, depending on size.
    Python has their dedicated Python Pays for the gay side of things and have mostly dealt with gay reps over there.

    XXXCash has 12 gay sites, just about half of our total of sites, and we are working on more. And Im your rep if you sign up! :grin:

    My question is, does it really matter if the program you are dealing with has a really strong gays site but is 90 precent focused on the straight market. Does it matter if you have a straight account rep if he/she is knowledageable and effective?

    I know that in the real world, i tend to go to gay-owned places to support the community. do you feel it's the same in the gay market here?


  8. #8
    TheLegacy
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    okay - my two cents worth

    Lee I am in agreement with you that the larger boys on the block do not seem to put the effort into marketing to the gay "MARKET" (*god please people enough with the niche label)

    Honestly I would like to give them the benefit of the doubt by say that they simply have had years of marketing to the straight niche and simply realize they have no idea where to begin here.

    You will find larger affiliates / providers will hire gay employees not necessarily to prove they are gay friendly, but they are hoping to find someone who knows the secret handshake to contact gay webmasters.

    That is the key phrase here - "they dont have gay webmaster lists to contact!!!" They can spam, do webmaster conferences, phone, and surf but they didnt realize is that for most of us - "gay folks look just like straights folks" - they walk around conference floors looking for the cast of Queer Eye to talk too. When that doesnt happen then they simply tuck their heads back into their hands and say, "guess there were no gay webmasters at the show"

    No one really has an idea how many gay webmasters there are much less contacting them.


  9. #9
    jhussher
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    Yeh, RainGurl, I agree that I don't care if my sponsor's rep is gay or straight. I rarely contact them anyway, unless a check goes missing. Python does have some good gay sites in the ebony niche. Holly was cool to work with there but she has moved on elsewhere. She used to send me an email every couple of weeks to tell me the conversion ratios, new sites, etc., that was helpful. I have never heard a word from the new guy.

    I am full time in this biz and one thing I look for with sponsors is payout frequency and method. I don't want to wait a month to get paid, and I don't like waiting on the mail system for paper checks. Python is in Canada and checks take like 5 to 10 days to arrive, then there is the bank clearance time for a foreign check...I like ARS and TopBucks because they offer ePassporte, PayPal, Direct Deposit, etc. I can finish out the ARS week at Sunday midnight and have my money the next afternoon in my account. (TopBucks is every 2 weeks, less desirable, and I time my promotions for TopBucks with their payout dates in mind). I have emailed Python several times with the suggestion to offer more, faster payment methods and never received even the courtesy of a reply. So I don't promo them much anymore. I have lots of links in place for them, and get the occasional sale.

    I am in the process of developing my own sponsor program, I now run 3 gay ethnic sites: black, latin and Indian, and Arab Boys is coming online next week. CCBill administers the affiliate program and pays everyone.

    James
    http://blackhotboy.com


  10. #10
    You do realize by 'gay' I mean a man who has sex with other men?
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    Originally posted by basschick
    the problem is that designers don't know about niches - they design. i think it's the program owner's job to write text and make suggestions to the designer, but almost none do.
    You do bring up a good point Patti.

    So with that said, other than Scorpio, who i can tell you had a hell of a time from me designing one of our new paysites because we were swapping and changing literally EVERYTHING on the tour pages he did for us until they were how *we* wanted them to look, feel and, sound, do you think they should be telling the affiliate program owners that they need to provide text for tours?

    Actually come to think of it, should designers have 'niche specific' designers on their teams? I.e one designer for gay, one designer for ebony, one designer for teen sites etc etc?

    Also, does it matter whether the sites themselves are 'generic'?

    Originally posted by jhussher
    Get some gay people to look over your site design and take sugestions for text.
    Good point, i have to admit there are a couple of companies i know of right now that literally just throw new tours up without even looking at or, testing them first, proofing the sites and throwing some test traffic at them is certainly a good start to making sure you have a decent site, whether the site is geared towards gay or straight men or women.

    Originally posted by RainGurl
    My question is, does it really matter if the program you are dealing with has a really strong gays site but is 90 precent focused on the straight market. Does it matter if you have a straight account rep if he/she is knowledageable and effective?
    Personally, i dont think it matters if the program is gay or straight in focus however, i do think that the wm support staff who are there to help you make money dont know what they are doing.

    A good example of this was on of the large programs a few months ago, i ICQ'd my support rep and asked about getting some additional free content and promo materials for one of their straight sites and was given it with no problems after i had the straight content and promo material i needed i asked for one of their gay sites and was told no. When asked why i was told no i was told 'i dont want to see naked men on my pc' (that is a quote btw) luckily the guy who said that is no longer with the affiliate program.

    I guess its ultimately horses for courses with acct reps they cant be knoweldgable in everything they do but they should at least be 1)Tolerant; 2) Willing to learn about the niches.

    Originally posted by TheLegacy
    Honestly I would like to give them the benefit of the doubt by say that they simply have had years of marketing to the straight niche and simply realize they have no idea where to begin here.
    But is that a fault of the program owners or, a fault of the webmasters promoting their sites?

    In all honesty i wouldnt know where to go to find more specific information about the Tranny niche however, i do know enough about that niche not to market it as a gay site. How do i know this? I asked and listened to advice i was given. Shouldnt the program owners be doing the same?

    Regards,

    Lee


  11. #11
    taboo_gal
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    Hey, jhussher. I've chekced out your site and one thing gave me cause for pause. You have no entry/access verification page. What precautions are you taking to make sure your visitors are of age. Of course, I understand that anyone can click a link, but aren't entry pages with some type of age verification required?


  12. #12
    leolion80
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    bullshit

    If we spend our lives working at equality does it matter if a straight guy runs a gay site?

    Rob


  13. #13
    You do realize by 'gay' I mean a man who has sex with other men?
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    Re: bullshit

    Originally posted by leolion80
    If we spend our lives working at equality does it matter if a straight guy runs a gay site?
    Not the topic being discussed here but thanks for your input

    The topic is about the marketing efforts the large affiliate programs put into their gay marketing not whether a straight man / woman can run a gay site which we all know they can (and some do it successfully).

    Regards,

    Lee


  14. #14
    Have an idea and make it come to life! Gary-Alan's Avatar
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    Originally posted by TheLegacy
    marketing to the gay "MARKET" (*god please people enough with the niche label)
    Robert... I applaud your efforts, but I've been saying the same thing since '96. Actually it was my first major 'coming out gay' post in this industry. Don't get a headache over it LMAOPIP

    Remember it's us, we know... we really do know

    Regards,
    Gary-Alan


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