Sex machines are very expensive, very loud, very big, and very clunky which means they only appeal to a niche audience. For a long time, this has been the picture people painted of this product category. The team of US company MB Technologies LLC want to change all that with the Motorbunny, a product aimed at introducing sex machines to a larger audience. We were eager to learn how they intend to achieve this goal, and Craig Mewbourne, the brand consultant for Motorbunny, told us about the new product in our EAN interview.
What exactly is the Motorbunny? Craig Mewbourne: The Motorbunny is a motorised, straddle-style, ride-on-top toy that allows users to affix a wide range of attachment styles for varied riding experiences. Flat, TPE attachments are designed purely for clitoral stimulation, and there are penetration attachments that take advantage of the rotation function, or what we call ‘twirl’.
There are products that seem similar to the Motorbunny, at least in theory. So: What sets it apart from the competition?
There have been competitive products of varying quality available for decades, and most are quite proud that their product offerings have been unchanged for that long. Motorbunny’s spirit of innovation is one big differentiator. We’re not afraid of trying new things. There’s also a big commitment to responsive service before and after the sale. We like to say we ‘cuddle after.’ Of course, there are different features like a slightly more powerful motor and eyelets for securing additional attachments. Oh, and Motorbunny costs about $450 less.
How did you get the idea for this product, and when did you launch it in the US?
The product development team actually began researching how to make various medical devices less expensive through streamlined production. They asked themselves, ‘How can we make a product that increases quality of life, but is less costly to produce?’ After a year of research, they expanded their research focus and the personal sexual device industry presented an answer to that question immediately. After two more years of development, Motorbunny was launched in February of this year.
Were you involved in the sex toy market before or was the Motorbunny your first step in this area?
Most of the team had no specific prior experience in the adult market, which we see as a positive. It’s been a wonderful learning process, and we haven’t been impeded by any biases. You won’t hear ‘but that’s never been done before’ in our hallways.
It is obvious that you are following a particular philosophy with the Motorbunny. Would you mind telling us more about that?
Absolutely! The short answer is that we don’t take ourselves too seriously. The long answer is that while Motorbunny products are purposefully designed, we know what really matters is the creativity they add to people’s sex lives. In order to remain focused on enabling those creative experiences, we operate based on five core beliefs:
1. Sexual fulfillment shouldn’t be a luxury. Everyone deserves to realise their maximum potential for pleasure. Anything we do should be affordable.
2. You shouldn’t be punished for experimenting. If you have an issue, return it. No questions asked. No hassle. If it’s not for you, it’s not for you.
3. Innovation is good for everybody (especially our customers). We can’t invent the wheel. That’s been done. But we can make it roll better, for less money.
4. Customers are relationships. Not sales.
5. People should be treated fairly. Period.
If there’s ever any issue, we usually just point to the fifth belief and most problems are solved.
What’s the target audience you are gunning for with the Motorbunny? Who is this product for?
We try not to overly define our target audience. We’ve seen happy users in all walks of life. Motorbunny appeals to anyone with a curiosity to see how intensely they or their partner can climax. (Everyone else, frankly, we just don’t understand.)
Big, heavy, unwieldy, extremely loud, not exactly discreet, overpriced – those are the most common preconceptions when it comes to sex machines. Will the Motorbunny be able to open up this niche to a new, wider audience?
We sure hope so! We’re continuing to tweak future designs to address noise objections, and a travel case is soon to be released. Lowering the price barrier is certainly helping us to find a wider audience, but we’re also hoping to see fewer stigmas applied overall. The industry sort of painted itself into a corner by marketing ‘indulgences,’ and we’re hoping to kick the door open for everyone.
Nowadays, most products in the sex toy market are marketed as couples’ products. Is Motorbunny also a product for couples?
Motorbunny is enjoyed by couples, but also by single women and men, and even groups of consenting adults. We think marketing exclusively to couples perpetuates one of the stigmas that motorised toys aren’t for everyone.
The Motorbunny is made up of various components made from various materials. How do you ensure the quality and safety of the product?
We took two years to review and select our parts and manufacturer partners. In the process, we tested dozens of models of various competitors in prototyping our flagship product. We knew if it wasn’t just as good or better, we’d have no chance of surviving. Our core product and all attachments have also been RoHS and CE certified.
How much time did you invest in the development of the Motorbunny, and what were the biggest challenges on the way to the finished product?
About three years of research and development were sunk into getting the basic Motorbunny ready. Everyone on the team is a dreamer of sorts, so it wasn’t a surprise to run into the challenge of trying not to bite off more than we could chew. A long list of innovative features had to be trimmed down to ensure we could make a high-quality core product. We had to remind ourselves that we had plenty of time to release upgrades and improvements in upcoming development cycles.
Which channels of distribution do you use to get the Motorbunny out there?
We are currently committed to direct, online sales. That way we have better control over the service experience. The Motorbunny (along with several available attachments) is also available on Amazon.com, and is currently an officially recommended product.
How do marketing and advertising differ from normal sex toys, like a vibrator or a masturbation sleeve, when you try to sell a product like the Motorbunny?
The price is far and away the largest concern for most customers. An investment in a $20 vibrator isn’t scary if the product experience turns out to be disappointing. Some people worry about spending that amount of money and being stuck with something they or their partner won’t like. We’ve found it helps to develop a reputation for not hassling people about returning the product when they decide it’s not for them.
Will European consumers also get to enjoy the pleasures of the Motorbunny? If so, do you already have a distribution strategy for this market?
Customers in many European countries already have access to order Motorbunny at motorbunny.com, where they can get a quote for shipping. There are plans to expand distribution so that shipping is more affordable for those customers, but that would be sometime next year.
Which criteria do you go by when selecting your partners in the trade and in distribution?
So far, Motorbunny isn’t considering wholesale partners because we want to make sure everything is well-oiled operationally and we can give them the support a partnership like that would deserve. It’s not out of the question in the future, but currently our energies are focused on new product development.
What are your plans for the Motorbunny? Will there be more attachments in the future?
New 100% silicone attachments will be released regularly, and restraints and nipple clamps will be available later this month. The ‘Jiggle Butt’ is a good example of the kind of fun the brand wants to have in future product development. It’s the first-ever attachment designed specifically for men and is available for purchase now.