Eugenio Torren’s article — Ride’em, Cowgirl — featuring Alicia Sinclair, was first published in the May issue of StorErotica magazine.
Alicia Sinclair, founder of parent company COTR, Inc., talks about reinventing—and blinging out—the wheel with her new riding-style sex machine, The Cowgirl.
As the founder of COTR, Inc.—which oversees b-Vibe, le Wand and The Cowgirl—Alicia Sinclair continues her blazing trajectory through the pleasure products sky. In October 2017, The Cowgirl made its international debut at eroFame and has since been picked up by distributors countrywide.
Sinclair, a credentialed sexuality educator and coach with the World Association of Sex Coaches, has brought high-tech functionality and modern aesthetics to the classic ride-on sex machine, so it’s no wonder retailers are lining up to mount The Cowgirl.
StorErotica: How did the idea for The Cowgirl start?
Alicia Sinclair: Like every brand we launch under COTR, Inc., The Cowgirl was born out of extensive research into the industry. I took a really close look at categories that haven’t been updated in years or that lack technological advancements or modern aesthetics. Riding/saddle machines stood out to me as one of those categories. I wanted to create a design forward and technologically advanced saddle-esque machine that brought this genre of machines into the modern era.
StorErotica: The Cowgirl’s design purports to “redefine the riding style sex machine.” How did you go about reinventing the wheel in this genre of product?
Alicia Sinclair: Well, I’d argue that the “wheel” wasn’t all too effective to begin with, and that it needed some updates both regarding its function and its design. We wanted to create something sleek and design-forward of which consumers could feel proud. The product is also carefully engineered to really cater to various pleasure zones, and everything was very specifically created to maximize stimulation. We also took a close look at how these machines were being used, and we realized that ours needed to be interconnective—especially so that it could be controlled not only via remote control, but over long distances as well. There’s also a tipping function that enables individuals to tip riders over a long distance; this is something that we hadn’t seen before in this type of product, but a functionality we realized is increasingly in demand, especially in the growing cam market.
StorErotica: It’s been a few months now since the launch party of The Cowgirl in January. What’s the actual reception to it been versus what you had in mind?
Alicia Sinclair: To be completely frank, it’s grown even more mainstream than I’d imagined it would. Of course, when we went about creating The Cowgirl, we knew it was a good idea (we wouldn’t have gone through with it if we hadn’t!) but we also knew this wasn’t a product for everyone. The widespread acceptance—both by buyers and press—has been really encouraging and truly makes me feel that as a society we’re growing more comfortable with prioritizing our pleasure.
StorErotica: The press releases I’ve seen place heavy emphasis on this being a luxe item; why was that a primary objective of yours in designing and creating The Cowgirl?
Alicia Sinclair: When it comes to riding machines, this wasn’t something that we’d seen incorporated into their design before. They haven’t traditionally been items that you’d necessarily feel proud displaying or that would fit in with the aesthetics of other elements of your household. Our goal as a company has always been to contribute to the de-stigmatization of sex, and one part of that is really elevating the design of sexual intimacy products. The sleek design is also, at the most basic level, sexy. It only enhances the experience to feel like you’re using a product that’s closer to a fashion statement than some hodge-podge device, and we wanted anyone using it to feel sexy and empowered.
StorErotica: Which feature of the Cowgirl are you most excited about?
Alicia Sinclair: I’d say that the interconnectivity and the ability to tip is really innovative when it comes to sex technology, and I’m proud we were able to incorporate these into such a forward-thinking device. These capabilities really empower users, whether they’re negotiating a long-distance relationship or using it for camming purposes.
StorErotica: With its price tag, is it fair to say the Cowgirl is more for the experienced, discerning user? And along those lines, what needs/wants did you want to address for said user with this product?
Alicia Sinclair: The Cowgirl is definitely for someone who’s a bit more comfortable with their sexuality and likely has some experience using sex toys in general. That said, I will say that we’ve seen a pretty widespread enthusiasm from people of all “experience levels.”
Regarding the price point, there’s no question that it’s an investment piece, so we wanted to make 100% certain that it was something that could be long-lasting, that could come with various attachments and capabilities, and that had the most advanced technology incorporated so that users would feel they’re getting the best option possible.
StorErotica: How can retailers best display your product in their stores?
Alicia Sinclair: We’ve seen The Cowgirl displayed in various ways and this really depends on how big a splash the retailer wishes to make, room available in their store, and how many units they order.
The Cowgirl does have a beautiful display, with a tester unit (available with a minimum buy-in). For folks with smaller stores, they might choose not to have a display and set up a tester with promotional videos and materials.
We highly encourage retailers to include informational guides next to the machine so that consumers can explore for themselves. It’s important to highlight all the key selling points of this item—specifically because of the price point.
We’ve even seen people create little-themed areas (hats, lariats, etc) to help make The Cowgirl display more of an experience than a static display. This is always a great way to spark interest and get the conversation started in an approachable away.
StorErotica: How do you advise retailers (especially smaller/individual retailers) selling an item that skews on the more expensive side, with a price tag of more than $1,000?
Alicia Sinclair: One of the key reasons The Cowgirl has made such a splash is because most people have never had the opportunity to touch and feel a sex machine prior to purchasing it. Making this item accessible to retailers, and to their consumers, allows consumers (and store associates for that matter) to have a personal connection.
Education is always something that is extremely important to us for all of our brands, so that certainly comes first. Explaining to consumers The Cowgirl’s features, who it caters to and why it’s different than other options on the market is a really great way to justify the price. For those who understand the market, it’s evident that The Cowgirl is the most modern and technologically advanced option. If they don’t, we definitely instruct retailers on the differentiation points.
Finally, it’s useful to explain to those who will be selling the machine what types of stimulation options The Cowgirl provides. This is especially useful for those who come in looking to buy something that caters to a specific pleasure zone, especially since The Cowgirl is a really incomparable option for certain types of stimulation. Oftentimes, there aren’t other products in the space that fulfill certain demands, which helps in setting it apart.
Additionally, at this price point, retailers have noted that a customer may come into the store multiple times to touch and feel the machine before purchasing. The Cowgirl is something folks may want to save for and may want to keep coming back to consider before buying.