Adult Site Broker Talk Episode 114 with Michael Ramos of ASN Entertainment

Adult Site Broker Talk Episode 114 with Michael Ramos of ASN Entertainment

Bruce F., host of Adult Site Broker Talk and CEO of Adult Site Broker, the leading adult website broker, who is known as the company to sell adult sites, is pleased to welcome Michael Ramos of ASN Entertainment.

Michael started ASN Lifestyle Magazine in 2011, which was the first of its kind in the lifestyle. They started with a vision and one website and have since grown ASN Entertainment into a successful and versatile company.

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Listen to Michael Ramos on Adult Site Broker Talk, starting today at

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Speaker 1 (0s): This is Bruce Friedman of adult site broker, and welcome to adult site broker talk, where each week we interview one of the movers and shakers of the adult industry. And we give you a tip on buying and selling websites. This week. we'll be speaking with Michael Ramos of ASN Entertainment.

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Now time for this week's interview. My guest today on adult site, broker talk is Michael Ramos, CEO, and founder of ASN entertainment. Michael, thanks for being with us today on adult site broker talk,

Speaker 2 (2m 25s): Bruce, it's a pleasure to be here. Thanks for inviting me.

Speaker 1 (2m 28s): Hey, it's great to have you now Michael started the magazine in 2011, which was the first of its kind in the lifestyle. They began with a vision and one website and ASN lifestyle magazine and have since grown ASN entertainment into a successful and versatile company. Michael came from the hospitality sector as a GM, as well as a systems administrator out of west Palm beach, Florida. People always ask what ASM stands for and the answer is simple. It stands for adult social network.

That's simple. It stands for all of us. Now their focus is to be the leader in providing the lifestyle community, the tools and the information needed to navigate all that the crazy lifestyle world holds. So Michael, tell me where you're based and where are most of your readers?

Speaker 2 (3m 18s): Well, we're based in Orlando, Florida, the sunshine state, our reader base actually comes from all over the world. The magazine is global magazine.

Speaker 1 (3m 28s): So did it pretty much start out domestic and then branch out from there?

Speaker 2 (3m 32s): Correct, Bruce. We started probably I think with less than a hundred readers when we started. Hmm. And that was back in 2018 when we got the magazine actually up and running to where it was, it was good to go out, but now we're celebrating our fourth year and we have a reach of over 3 million, 3 million people globally. Wow.

Speaker 1 (3m 54s): Wow. So what do you attribute all the growth to

Speaker 2 (3m 57s): The magazine's free? I mean, it's that, it's the fact that we have really good contributors that, that are in the magazine each month.

Speaker 1 (4m 5s): Okay. Now you also have an online edition talk a little bit about the, the difference between the two and you know, how, how the online versions going.

Speaker 2 (4m 21s): Well, our distribution is only online. We, we, we never got into the print game just because, oh, okay. We, we, we vary in the page count each month, which gives us the flexibility to have either, you know, we could fit a ton of content into, into the space versus being constrained by a printer. That's only gonna limit us to print X amount pages each month. Sure, sure. So with, with that said, you know, it's the digital online's been very successful. The magazine itself is almost, it gives you the, the feel, it gives you everything, but the smell of a real magazine, cause you have the, the, the flip, you have the, the sound of the pages flipping, it gives you all that.

Speaker 1 (5m 0s): Right. And, and you know, in, in this day and age let's face it pretty much everything's going digital, isn't it?

Speaker 2 (5m 7s): Correct. I mean, even Playboy after all these years has finally gone completely digital with their publication.

Speaker 1 (5m 13s): Yeah. That was kind of necessitated, I think, by money. So, so how did ASN get started and, and what was the goal at that time

Speaker 2 (5m 26s): Originally when ASN started and hence where the acronym ASN stands for adult social network was we tried to produce a website like SDC SLS back in the day. Okay. And that we were trying to find our niche into this market space. And we were hit with brick walls, a lot of resistance and stuff like that. People didn't want another dating website or swinger's website. So after spending lots of money and, and we sat there at the dinner table one night and said, look, you know what, there's no media company or exposure that's happening in the lifestyle.

Why don't we be that source? And the light opened off in the head, you know, and the Jew and me, which I'm Jewish said, let's produce this.

Speaker 1 (6m 9s): Likewise.

Speaker 2 (6m 10s): And that's where it's, that's where it was born. We became, we, we hit that vacuum. Someone had made the example that there was a vacuum and we were able to suck into it when we got the lifestyle. Because originally when we were told that no one was gonna read the magazine, right. No one was gonna wanna be in the magazine. And we're now in, like I said, our fourth year and I have probably over a year and a half waiting list on, on the cover. Wow. So it's, you know, it's, it's been very successful. We're very proud of what we're doing. We're very humble.

Speaker 1 (6m 39s): You know, you said you got a lot of resistance. Talk, talk a little bit about that.

Speaker 2 (6m 44s): Well, the resistance came from within the lifestyle itself, being in the, in the lifestyle for, we were 15 years when I decided this was something that we were gonna do. I went to what I thought was the top echelon of the lifestyle. Okay. And gave them this idea of what I wanted to do. And some of the people were very supportive and, and said, you know, we got your back, we'll support you. And some of those people were actually in the magazine, but then there were some people that said, no, it's not gonna work. No one's gonna wanna be in it. And it's just, you're wasting your time and you're wasting your money.

Hmm. And I think the reason they said that is because if I didn't go through with it, they would've came around and done it because it's, it's a, it's a success.

Speaker 1 (7m 23s): Oh, sure, sure. It's a great idea. But, but you also said that you got resistance to starting another social network, you know, you mentioned SDC. Correct. Was that, I mean, tell me about that part.

Speaker 2 (7m 38s): That, that, that's actually kind of funny, cuz everything comes, comes to fruit nutrition, the same people that were saying, you know, you know, we don't want you doing this because 15 years ago and, and probably still true to today, the lifestyle, they tried to keep everybody in their box. So if you, if you're member of this site, will, we don't want you on this site. You know, you can't do this. You gotta go to our parties, blah, blah, blah. Well, you know, so that was, that was the resistance. But the funny thing is, is that resistance then became my advertisers.

So now the people that were fighting me are now paying me. I love it. It's it's, you know, and SDC, for example, we've been in a relationship with them since 2019 and they're actually my tele sponsor of our award show this year. Hmm. So you could just see how far we've come, you know, from being not wanting to talk to one another to actually working, working together,

Speaker 1 (8m 31s): That's a little hard to understand because let's face it. You guys like, like the entire adult industry get a lot of noise from the outside, but I think people in the lifestyle even get more noise because let's face it. And you know, the, the, the preconceived notion is you've got a, you've got a man and you've got a woman and that's a relationship. And the lifestyle really deviates from that. Not in a negative way, but I mean, it, it, it, it's different than the, the preconceived notion, the religious norms, whatever you wanna call it.

Right. And here you wanted to start another social network that had to do with the lifestyle. So tell, maybe you can fill me in a little bit more since I'm not in the lifestyle. Maybe you can fill me in a little bit more about how the people are in that respect to, I don't know, to, to why are they trying to put everybody in a box?

Speaker 2 (9m 32s): Well, I think what's happened since that the stigma or, or the things where they were wanting to keep everybody in the box. I think what the magazine did was open up that box, it opened up and say, Hey, you know, this is who we are. We're proud of what we are. You know, everyone has the outside thing swinging necessarily means, you know, everyone's going and having an orgy. Yeah. That's not necessarily the case. I mean, Sweden itself has so many levels of, of what a swinger is. Sure. You could be a swinger and actually not have sex with anybody. You're just part of a group that, that likes to get together and, and hang out.

Or you could, like we did is we formed a niche with a couple couples that we've grown to very fond of over the years. And that's kind of where we play. We don't go outside of that group. Okay. But then you, you know, you have the other, the younger generation of swingers that do this whole mass, you know, you know, everyone's gonna have sex with everybody and, and that's okay. But as far as the, the stigma about maybe what the outside was seeing, I think that the magazine has helped reshape that because of the, the contributors.

Like I said, that we have, we have some of the best sexologists and therapists in the country that are in the magazine as contributors case in point, our, our may cover is therapists out of central Texas from a, a company, well known therapist company called evolve, your intimacy. Yeah. So having that, we're able to educate cuz our magazine rides that line right now where I think a lot of our readership is people wanting to know what the lifestyle's about. So we're able to educate that part of it and whether they wanna play or just get an understanding of what it is because what they see in the movies and what is reality is, is total opposites.

So I think that's where the magazine comes in line and helps in creates the, the, the, the group versus the separation.

Speaker 1 (11m 27s): But why didn't they want another social network? I mean that, I mean, that's the that's well,

Speaker 2 (11m 31s): You,

Speaker 1 (11m 32s): It's hard. That's the part that hard, that's hard to understand where you said, well, you, you know, you go to these parties and no, you go to these parties. No, you go to the site, you go to the site. Why is that?

Speaker 2 (11m 43s): Because it comes down to dollars. It comes down to what people are paying. And, and instead of realizing that the lifestyle has so much of a market that everybody can play in the same lake, they feared that, that by having someone that belongs to their site to another site and go to those parties, that they were now gonna lose a customer at the end of the day, that's, that's what it is a dollar.

Speaker 1 (12m 8s): And so it was competition.

Speaker 2 (12m 10s): Of course, absolutely. Ah, of course. And the top survived and, and the, the week fell. Yes. But yes, you look now in 2022, there's so many micro groups in different sites. Now that it's not the same issue I had when we tried to do this, when we tried to enter this space, it it's much more inviting.

Speaker 1 (12m 30s): Okay. So what's the difference between you said you've been in the lifestyle for 15 years?

Speaker 2 (12m 35s): Little bit, little over 15 years. Yeah.

Speaker 1 (12m 37s): Okay. So what's the difference between 15 years ago and now what's changed.

Speaker 2 (12m 42s): It's more of an open subject. We don't use the word swingers. We don't like the word swingers. We use the word lifestyle.

Speaker 1 (12m 49s): Yes.

Speaker 2 (12m 50s): Because swingers seems to have a bed, not, you know, going back to connotation where you yeah. When you threw your keys in a bowl and you picked, and that was the person you were gonna have sex with. And that's, that's not what we are nowadays. We're, we're about throwing these massive high budget parties, these huge takeovers, these, these all inclusive takeover cruises. I mean, it's become a, a really big market, no different than, than, you know, if you were going on a cruise that was all inclusive, but didn't have the sex.

I mean, everybody likes,

Speaker 1 (13m 26s): That's really all inclusive.

Speaker 2 (13m 28s): Yeah. Yeah. You know,

Speaker 1 (13m 31s): Go, go ahead. Sorry.

Speaker 2 (13m 32s): I was gonna say no, there's like four cruises a year now that just cater to the lifestyle.

Speaker 1 (13m 37s): Hmm.

Speaker 2 (13m 38s): So we got one coming up, going the Barcelona in June.

Speaker 1 (13m 41s): This is one of yours.

Speaker 2 (13m 43s): It's one of them that I'll be on because I have a contract with that crew with that cruise line or with that lifestyle group, that travel agency.

Speaker 1 (13m 51s): Hmm. So, so has your, has your experience in hospitality helped with that?

Speaker 2 (13m 57s): I think so. I mean, I was, I was in upper management and hospitality. I ran a couple of big hotels in California and I think anytime you have that on your, you know, you have that background, it, it allows you to, to be a better person and, and better read a room. So yeah, of course, of course the hospitality field helped.

Speaker 1 (14m 15s): Are you guys planning on doing some of your own events?

Speaker 2 (14m 19s): Currently? The only thing we do now is our annual ASN lifestyle magazine awards, which this year is this last year that it'll be virtual next year. We're planning on being live with people and we're looking at Vegas.

Speaker 1 (14m 35s): Okay. But no cruises,

Speaker 2 (14m 38s): No cruises. Well, I mean, I have cruises, but I have them because of a contract I have with a certain travel company. Yeah. So yeah, we're doing those, but we do 'em we report on the cruise when we're, when we're on the ship.

Speaker 1 (14m 49s): Okay. Okay. So the two of you are, are in the lifestyle yourself. I was gonna say swingers, but I won't. Okay. How did you get started in the lifestyle?

Speaker 2 (15m 1s): You know, I just, I, I was young and I like to have sex, you know, it's, it's not like now where I'd rather use a sandwich

Speaker 1 (15m 8s): Different from anyone else.

Speaker 2 (15m 10s): I don't think so, but yeah, that's what it started with. It was just that. And then meeting some people that ended up were in the lifestyle, I got introduced to it and it just, it just, that's where it started, you know? And then you have that conversation with your wife is when we got married, we weren't in the lifestyle. It was, you know, this is something that I think we needed to have a discussion about and it worked, you know, it may have not worked, but I probably would still be doing the same business. I'm not, I'm not sure that I wouldn't have changed.

Speaker 1 (15m 38s): Okay. So what happened by the way, excuse me, you started in, in 2011, what happened between 2011 and 2018?

Speaker 2 (15m 51s): We were actually shooting porn between 2011 and 2018. We owned a company called real Florida Housewives. Oh, okay. And that's, that's where we, we, that's how we were able to slip into the lifestyle because of the, the people we knew.

Speaker 1 (16m 4s): Okay.

Speaker 2 (16m 5s): And then we went from that to where I was on a, I was part of triplex porn star radio, which is now no longer in business, but that's, that's kind of where I got my roots into the porn and meeting porn stars that were swingers and, and getting to meet those people. And, and it just, just exploded from there.

Speaker 1 (16m 26s): Yeah. No pun intended,

Speaker 2 (16m 28s): No pun intended.

Speaker 1 (16m 29s): So talk about how the business started and I'm sure you got some great stories about getting the business up and running

Speaker 2 (16m 39s): Well, yeah, it's, it's really funny. This came at the end of our, our, our contract with triplex porn star radio 2017. Hmm. We were sitting in the, I was sitting at my desk and we were starting the beginnings of this, of this magazine. And my wife said to me, she says, look, Michael, seriously, if you don't do something of this business, I'm, I'm out, you know, I'm, I'm done, we're gonna separate. And this is actually in the April issue of 2019.

It talks about everything that happened. But yeah. So I went in my office that night and I sold my first ad for the magazine that no one knew existed at that point. Wild. Yeah. And it's funny is I sold the first ad for $30, you know, and we we've come a long way from that 30 bucks, but it was the first 30 bucks we made. And that was a turning point for us as a couple, as a business. And it just enhanced the relationship from there moving forward.

Speaker 1 (17m 41s): Yeah. That's fantastic. So any other stories about getting started?

Speaker 2 (17m 47s): Not really. I mean, it's, it's, it's, you know, we, we, like I said, we've met a lot of people. We've used the knowledge that we've had from the lifestyle. I, I, I used, like I said, a lot of the people that I've, that I believed in, you know, what I'd call except the top echelon of those lifestyle. And I, and, and I cultivated those relationships. And when it was time to put the magazine together, I then called on them and they came in, they were in the magazine and stuff like that. I mean, we've had people from Playboy on the cover, you know, everyone put their foot forward to help us be successful.

So if, if it wasn't for them, we wouldn't be here.

Speaker 1 (18m 22s): Now it occurs to me because you and I have connected and, and we're doing business together. And, and we're now an advertiser. Yes. It occurs to me that you guys are getting more mainstream. It, it seems like ASN is out there more people, more people know about it. Talk about that transformation.

Speaker 2 (18m 47s): That transformation is incredible. And, and I still look at her and I go, can you believe this? Because it's only yesterday where we were struggling to, to, to make the 30 bucks. Hmm. And what we, the vision we've always had was produce the best quality magazine we can. Yeah. Just because we're in this niche didn't mean it had to be smutty. Oh yeah. And so we, we, we did our best. We, we, we often say that if GQ employee boy had a baby, it would be ASN lifestyle magazine.

Nice. So when we moved to the mainstream, which is what we, we've kind of done this route where right now we're in the middle between the adult lifestyle and the lifestyle, I'm sorry, the adult industry and the lifestyle. And we're now picking at that mainstream audience. And we did that on purpose we've even retailer, the award show so that it didn't distinguish between whether you were a lifestyle or adult industry. Interesting. Because we, well, I just went back to the grassroots that we had because we were successful there. So why sure.

Reinvent the wheel when you already have it, just make it better. And, and that's what we did. And, and we just focused on marketing. I mean, marketing, marketing, marketing, the message. Yeah. You know, we, we, we pride ourselves. We say, you know what, it's all about the lifestyle, which, which it was, it's all about the community. It's all about the people that read our magazine. We listen to them, we talk to these people, you know, when they call up the phone, they actually get one of us. They don't, they don't get a voicemail. That's what we do. We're constant communication with the people that, that, that support the magazine and that pay to have their ads in the magazine, because that's the backbone of our magazine as our advertisers.

Speaker 1 (20m 29s): Okay. So talk about the blending. And this is kind of a similar question, the blending of the mainstream adult industry with the lifestyle.

Speaker 2 (20m 41s): I think that started because when we started doing exotica with, I think at the time it was lifestyle X, or it was couples X, and now it's lifestyle X. They had a little niche that, that was carved out for them in exotica, where they had the lifestyle, people had their boost. And that, you know, I, I looked at that one year and I I'm saying, well, okay, if the lifestyle can come to a, to an adult industry convention yeah. And coexist, then why can't the magazine coexist with these same people?

Sure. So that's kind of where it started. Then I, again, I went back to the people I knew and I said, Hey, what do you think this is? I wanna make this turn here. It's, it's not been done before. Do you think this is possible? And we were reassured, you know, they said, Michael, Sherry, you know what you guys do is brilliant. If you, we, we don't see you failing. So just keep moving forward. We've never looked back.

Speaker 1 (21m 35s): Nice. Very nice. So now you talked, you referred earlier to your annual awards event. So get into some detail about what it's all about, you know, the, you know, some of the categories, how does someone get nominated? And I I'm sure you're excited about getting back to in-person events.

Speaker 2 (21m 57s): Oh, we can't wait to get back to in-person events. The last award show we had in person was in Vegas and it was right before COVID hit. And then we've been off since then. We've been doing the awards show virtually. Yeah. But it's not the same as having a room full of people. We, we still try to produce a, a show that, that we think they, like, we want them to sit there, to sit there for 46 minutes and watch which, from what we're seeing, they did, they sat there and they watch for, there was people having watch parties last of the award show all over the country to see if they won awards.

So they going to their clubs and having these watch parties.

Speaker 1 (22m 35s): That's very cool.

Speaker 2 (22m 36s): Yeah. And we did the award show on a Sunday, so most of these clubs were closed, so that reopened them, that allowed them to get revenue. And then they had people come in and watch to see if the, if their club won. That's neat. So it was good.

Speaker 1 (22m 48s): That's really neat.

Speaker 2 (22m 50s): Yeah. So I'm sorry. I just need you to, what was the other part of that question? Cause

Speaker 1 (22m 55s): So talk a bit about the award show, how it came about, you know, maybe some of the, some of the categories. Sure. What it's all about and how does someone get nominated?

Speaker 2 (23m 9s): The award show came together through the fact that we're a, we're a publisher. And when you look at a lot of the award shows are backed by publishers, by magazines by by. So we thought, well, this was the next natural step for us and our progression of what we wanted to do. So we, again sat down with our, our inner circle, talked about what we wanted to do. And then the award show was born. Wow. Our second, our first year we actually just loaned our name out to, to another event.

But we, the award show was named the ASN lifestyle magazine awards, but it was hosted by another, another event in, in Vegas. Okay. The second year was we were on our own and it was a virtual event. And we, we changed between what you did in 19, sorry. In 2020 to 2021, where the nominations, you were nominated, anyone could be nominated. It didn't matter where you came from, you could be nominated. And then we, we, then you would then voting would start. Now, the problem with that, that award show was, and we learned is that we had maybe 30, 40 people in the same category when it came time for voting.

So that obviously it was successful because people nominated and people voted, but it wasn't conducive to us to have so many people in the same category. So for this year's award show, we changed it up. And again, this is from learning and we'll continue to learn and change, but this year nominations are open and we want you to constantly nominate, nominate, nominate, nominate. And then what we're doing is we're taking the top five nominations and then they're gonna move on to the finals. Now, nominations end April 30th of this, this month.


Speaker 1 (24m 54s): I should say, I should say that. Tell everyone that we're, we're recording this on April 26th and they'll be long over by the time this runs, sorry.

Speaker 2 (25m 3s): That's true. Yeah. That's true. Yeah. So, Hey, you know, predict winner maybe, but so then the award show start, the voting will start in may and then it'll go to June and then we do our award show virtual event. We're gonna do it a mansion here in Orlando, where I have the presenters coming in and they're gonna do it. They're all signed NDAs. So then no one talks about the award show and then we produce it and you'll see it in September.

Speaker 1 (25m 31s): You will, you will be on before September. I do.

Speaker 2 (25m 34s): Okay.

Speaker 1 (25m 34s): We'll see. Maybe no, we got these interviews booked out so far. I'm sorry. I

Speaker 2 (25m 40s): Hear you. No, no, no, it's fine. But like you asked about categories. Yeah. Yeah. There, we have everything from best lifestyle crew. Oh, sorry. Best cruise company. Best travel company. Best resort. Best camgirl best fan site. Best public relations company. Yeah. Yeah. So, you know, we, we changed it up dramatically. Best

Speaker 1 (25m 60s): Website broker, best

Speaker 2 (26m 1s): Ex well, there is best website. So unfortunately I can't nominate you. You have to have your people nominate you. That's one thing people ask about the transparency of the awards and we're very transparent there. Our awards are certified by a CPA every year who takes the votes and counts and then gives them back to us the day of, well for this year would be the day of that. We're gonna do the production at the, at the house, the mansion that we're gonna rent. Cool.

And that's the first time we'll actually see the results. When we go ahead and hand those envelopes to everybody

Speaker 1 (26m 36s): Sounds awesome.

Speaker 2 (26m 37s): Well, we did it because there's so much controversy in this category, our event for something that should be, you know, joyous. It's, it's not like you're, you're winning a Nobel peace prize, you know? I mean, it's nice that, that, that people are very competitive, but we're not gonna sell out ourselves to, to, to, to, to R an event that should be fun. Yeah. So that's why we go above and beyond the steps to prove that, you know, there's never, ever gonna be a question.

No one can ever come back to ASN and say, Hey, you know, we kind of think that your award shows maybe a little hunky, cuz it's not.

Speaker 1 (27m 18s): Yeah. I, I get that impression about some of the award shows, but we won't talk about that. So, and it seems like from some of the categories, it's definitely a lot of it is mainstream mainstream adult.

Speaker 2 (27m 31s): It, it, it is, but it's a crossover. Cause you gotta remember two years of the pandemic, a lot of your lifestyle couples were now doing camming. Yep. They were doing camming. They were doing, they were doing anything they could. That generated income. Of course. So that's where this came from. So, and there's such a really now 20, 22, there's such a, it's very hard to see the difference almost between someone that is in the adult industry and someone that's into the lifestyle because those lives parallel. They go, they really go side by side.

Speaker 1 (28m 0s): Absolutely.

Speaker 2 (28m 1s): And, and it's incredible. So that, that's why we took the direction we did. And that's why we took off the word lifestyle in the awards, even though they're called the ASN lifestyle magazine awards.

Speaker 1 (28m 11s): That's awesome. Now you offer people the chance to become models. So what are you, what are you, what kind of models are you looking for? What are the models, images and videos used for and do they have to come see you in person? Or could they send you images?

Speaker 2 (28m 31s): Actually? No, they they'd never have to come see us in person. I mean, it's in the Orlando market then. Yeah. We would meet up for lunch or coffee just to have a conversation. But what they do is they would go to our, our corporate site, ASN and they would fill out a mall registration. And basically that's all the legal moment jumbo protects us with the us, says, you know us 2 57. Yeah. Right. That way we have it on file. And then basically they pick there's this categories of what we offer for the magazine.

And then they, they go ahead and check what they want. And then what we do is in my, my wife would get 'em my CFO. And then she goes through 'em and she actually makes first contact and then schedules, whether we're gonna have a video conference or meet in person. And sometimes the model can get into the magazine right away. Sometimes it may take six months to a year for that performer or model to get into the magazine.

Speaker 1 (29m 26s): Hmm. Okay. And so you're just, you're basically putting images in the magazine.

Speaker 2 (29m 34s): Well, we have images. We usually ask when, when a typical, let's say a lifestyle couple comes and they say, you know, we'd like to go, go ahead and be in your magazine. Well, that's great, but we want a little more substance. So we asked for, give us your bio, what's your story? What, what makes you unique? What, what brought you to the lifestyle or what brought you to the adult industry? Why, why should people, why should our readers read about you? What makes you different? And they usually, they like that. Sure. So we usually get between 1500 to 3000 words, five to 10 pictures.

And that goes in as a pictorial, we allow them to go ahead and link to different their social media. Cool. At the end. And it it's, you know, so far it's worked out really well. I mean, I think we, we have the secret sauce for success.

Speaker 1 (30m 18s): Now, speaking of the secret sauce, I don't know how much of this you want to give away. What advice would you give to someone thinking of starting their own lifestyle magazine?

Speaker 2 (30m 29s): Don't give up, be persistent. You're gonna fail. You're gonna fail over and over again. In fact, I have a plaque on my desk that says very simple success comes from failure. Yeah. And I can't tell you how many times I've failed. So my biggest advice is, Hey, gimme a call. I'd be more happy to talk to you. There's so much room in this, in this, in this space that I'll never shut the door down from someone that wants to go ahead and advance themselves and do something like this. Nice. I think that, you know, that creates competition and competition is good.

Speaker 1 (31m 0s): I agree with you. And I like the fact you're not gonna do to them. What the industry did to you initially.

Speaker 2 (31m 8s): Right? Well, it happens, but I believe in paying it forward and that's, as long as I live by that mantra and I live with good karma, good things will happen.

Speaker 1 (31m 17s): Hey, who knows? Maybe someday they'll buy out and I'll broker. Maybe that

Speaker 2 (31m 24s): Be fine. We'd have to figure out a way for, to stay on board though, because I it's it's, you know, it's funny that you say that because it is very hard to, and I think maybe cuz we're owners to give the keys to someone else to produce the magazine. It's very to, to me. Yeah. No one knows what I do, but it's a process usually takes me between 19 to 25 days to produce a typical magazine that runs around 180, 190 pages. Hmm. And that's layout, that's that's links.

That's everything that needs to be in it. It's crazy, but it's a lot. And I don't know if I'm ready to show somebody that yet. Sure. My wife tells me I have to because there's other projects that we're moving on to that that are gonna need more of my time. So it may happen sooner than later.

Speaker 1 (32m 12s): And I will, I will attest to the fact that Michael is extremely hands on. He's extremely hands on. So you talked about other projects when, what you got coming up.

Speaker 2 (32m 22s): Ah, we have something that's launching soon. We're trying to launch it before July. It's gonna be called the ASN hub.

Speaker 1 (32m 30s): Okay.

Speaker 2 (32m 31s): And the hub is gonna be really what it is. It's gonna be the hub. It's gonna be the repository for all the articles that you see in the magazine. We do this to help the advertisers get a, a better ROI, better return on their investment because now they get their magazine that goes out. It's there. But now when someone comes to the hub, they're gonna see all these active articles all the time.

Speaker 1 (32m 53s): Cool.

Speaker 2 (32m 53s): So it's that part. It's also, we're becoming, we're gonna be a de repository for everyone that has press releases and we're gonna store all those press releases from all over the place. Nice. And then share that information. We started it with the entertainment because obviously I, I, we handle some your PR. Yes, but we're gonna expand it. Oh, it's our pleasure. But we're gonna expand it. So it benefits the person writing the PR the person that's the PR is about and the overall, you know, synergy of the community in the industry.

Speaker 1 (33m 25s): Cool. So,

Speaker 2 (33m 26s): And that, that's the second thing. And I don't know if I could talk about the third thing yet, cuz we're still in development of it.

Speaker 1 (33m 32s): Okay. If you tell me you'll have to kill me and all my and more and how that hub, that's more back links, man. We're always looking for that stuff. So I appreciate it. Oh yeah. And I'm sure everybody will. So what advice would you give to someone who's thinking of getting into the lifestyle?

Speaker 2 (33m 50s): Huh? That's a good question. Because I think a lot of people get into the lifestyle for the wrong reasons. You have to really almost have that conversation with yourself, asking, you know, why, what is it about the lifestyle that you're attracted to that makes you want to go this route? A lot of people do it because guys do it because they want, they, you know, they're oh, I wanna have sex with lots of women.

Speaker 1 (34m 12s): I wanna get laid. Yeah. Well isn't that? What all isn't that? What all young single guys do and not, not necessarily young,

Speaker 2 (34m 19s): But, but, but you know what? That's not what it, that's not what it's about. That's not how it works. So when they come in with that connotation, it sets a bad tone. Sure. Or they, they force their girlfriend or wife to do it because this is something they, they want to do. Right. And then that ends badly. Oh yeah. Really have to have that conversation at heart to heart. It's no different than someone that's in BDSM. And then after a session, you have to have that, that recovery, you know, the, that repair because you, you, you're doing something that you don't typically do in life.

Right? And then you have to, you gotta get back together. You, the best thing that I suggest is that go visit a club, go visit down here in Florida. We have trapeze. We have secret ti away, go visit those and see, you can get a day pass at many of these places, get an idea for what it is. A lot of these places will also give you a tour and show you different things and explain a little bit more detail. But at the end of the day, you have to, it comes from the gut because not everybody's built for this, just like not everybody could do what you do. Not everybody could be a professional basketball player.

It takes a certain caliber of human being to put themselves and maybe watch their wife being screwed by somebody or, or whatever, because it's, it's a different mindset.

Speaker 1 (35m 31s): Absolutely.

Speaker 2 (35m 32s): So kind of compare it to porn. I think that's why porn actors, actors are able to, to, to go back and forth. Right. You know, I, I have a lot of friends that are in the lifestyle that, that, that do porn as well. And they've been around for many, many years.

Speaker 1 (35m 45s): Sure, sure. Now ASN is a business. Are there any types of content or any organizations you'd to include in your publications on general principles?

Speaker 2 (35m 57s): Anything that's hate? We won't, we won't publish. I mean, that's just common decency really hate. We don't want to get into politics that much. Although if you're gonna write a piece, that's an opinion piece we have from time to time allowed them to come in. It just really depends on what the relevancy is to the lifestyle or to the industry. If it has a connection, then, then we more likely will allow it to come in. But definitely no hate, no discrimination, no antisemites, none of that stuff that you would, you would seize other places.

We just don't, we won't put up with it. All ideas is to provide a space that people like enjoy and want to come back to.

Speaker 1 (36m 39s): Yeah. Yeah. That makes sense. So now, if someone wants to advertise their event, their podcast or their product, what should they know and how should they go about

Speaker 2 (36m 49s): It? We have currently, if you went to ASN ol and you went to, we have this big button that this is advertised with us, ah, simply click on that. It takes you to where you'll see the different ad sizes that we offer talks about. The different packages that we have are also is our latest media kit is there as well. So you can see our reach, our audience, our demographics and stuff like that. And the companies that do really well in the magazine. So that's all for everybody to see. And then if they still have more questions, they could always pick up a phone, call me or call Sherry and we'd be more happy to, to talk to them about it.

Our, a typical advertiser has saved with us from the beginning. We, I think the pandemic, we lost two clubs because they closed down. They're no longer in business. Sure. And we had one fallout that went away, but they were with us for four years and it, we were friends and it was a personal issue and we decided that we didn't want their business.

Speaker 1 (37m 49s): Hmm.

Speaker 2 (37m 49s): Okay. But other than that, and I always say to a potential advertiser, go through our magazine, pick an ad at random and call 'em and ask. 'em why they're in the magazine.

Speaker 1 (37m 59s): Nice.

Speaker 2 (37m 60s): Because that's the only way that that's the best way to sell it because I can tell you all day that, you know, I'm gonna sell you this car. I'm gonna tell you all the great things about it. But I want you to know what's under the hood and why is this the car for you? Sure. So if you go talk to a club or somebody out in far right field, that's in the, in the magazine, ask them why, well, one, how long have you been with the magazine and why are you still here?

Speaker 1 (38m 21s): Yeah. How's it working?

Speaker 2 (38m 22s): Yeah. That's it. Exactly. And you know, and 99% of 'em are gonna say, because they, they get a return and they're, they like the relationship, the one-on-one that we give them, we reach out to them every couple of months say, Hey, do you wanna change up your ad? Do you wanna do this? Let's you know, how can we target market for you better? You know? Yeah. Yeah. So we're constantly hands on that way. And then the, I just lost my train of thought. The other thing was

Speaker 1 (38m 49s): Mine jumps the track on a regular basis.

Speaker 2 (38m 50s): It does. I just watched it hop to track, but it's just, we're there for everybody, you know? I mean, is it for everybody? No, but, but is it, is it for a lot of people? Yes. I mean, we currently have businesses in the magazine that aren't even in the lifestyle of detail industry. Right. You know, I have urologists, I have plastic surgeons. I mean, you know,

Speaker 1 (39m 10s): They're in Florida, you're in Florida, you have plastic surgeons. How'd they find you.

Speaker 2 (39m 15s): I took, it took a while, but they found me, You know, and we offer a really competitive ad package. You know, we, we, I think we're the cheapest in the business. I definitely, if you were to, now, I know we're not Playboy, but if you were to compare us to Playboy Playboy charges, $5,000 for a quarter page ad to run one time, you know, our, our starting rate for a year contract is $500. It was supposed to go up because of the pandemic. We haven't had an increase, but we've also never hit our ceiling.

So we've had no resistance to our price increases over the last few years. So we are due for one. We're gonna wait and do it in 2023.

Speaker 1 (39m 54s): That's probably wise. Yeah. Now your magazine features a lot of big names in the swinger's world. Do you get a chance to meet these people a lot?

Speaker 2 (40m 3s): Absolutely. That that's one of the greatest perks about this business in the magazine is I do get to meet a lot of these people. We've right. Lately it seems like we're running, we're doing a lot of CEOs, you know, and women in the sex tech business. And it's great. It's, it's really, it's re re refigured a lot of things that we're, we're trying to give everybody what they want and, you know, cultivating again, these are new relationships that we, that we're making and they tell their people, Hey, you know what?

You should be in the magazine. And I'll tell you where a lot of my CEOs come from. I have a very active LinkedIn account. Hmm. And I'm constantly in the conversations about sex tech, about lifestyle. Yeah. About anything that has to do with the sex injuries, sex workers. We, we just did a, a deal with Mustang ranch. Oh, wow. Out in Reno, Nevada, not the pro side

Speaker 1 (40m 56s): Of it, of my childhood,

Speaker 2 (40m 59s): Not the Broel side, but we brought on their executive chef as our, as our new contributor

Speaker 1 (41m 4s): Never met him.

Speaker 2 (41m 6s): Well, he's, he's been there for 14 years, I think now.

Speaker 1 (41m 10s): Yeah. Still have never met him anyway.

Speaker 2 (41m 14s): No, but so, I mean, that's, that's what we do. You know, we had a really,

Speaker 1 (41m 17s): I didn't, I didn't go there to eat

Speaker 2 (41m 18s): Well, they have good steak, just so you

Speaker 1 (41m 22s): Know. Okay. It's good to know. I'll I'll keep, I'll keep that in mind for the future. Yeah,

Speaker 2 (41m 26s): No, no. Unfortunately I go out there for business.

Speaker 1 (41m 30s): So what do you wish people understood about the lifestyle

Speaker 2 (41m 34s): That they need to hold their judgment and actually get to know someone or ask questions about it and not just take what they see on TV and what they read in the paper or the news. Cause that's, that's not, that's not, that's not true. There was a piece that was done in LA about a club that was rated during the pandemic. That was a lifestyle party and they, they compared it to sex trafficking. Oh lovely. It's you can't be further

Speaker 1 (41m 60s): From yeah. But yeah, but doesn't the media compare everything in our industry to sex trafficking.

Speaker 2 (42m 4s): Yeah. They, they crazy. They do because they, you know, the media isn't media anymore, the media's entertainment. Yep. So that's how they, that's how they, they pay their bills and click. I'm not gonna get in there cuz I have a whole different

Speaker 1 (42m 18s): It's all click bait.

Speaker 2 (42m 19s): Yeah. Yeah. Well, and we give it to you straight, you know, we actually, here's the other thing I have you asked for it. We have it, we have Michael photography. We have one the, the, the leading adult entertainment attorneys that writes for us.

Speaker 1 (42m 33s): Oh Michael. Yeah.

Speaker 2 (42m 35s): Also. Yep. Michael writes for us. Yeah. You know, so I mean we cover every basis. So I mean, he just got done doing a five page, sorry. A five month article on, on only fans and, and about the lifestyle about these people trying to get into it, making sure they're protected and stuff like that. So I mean, it's, it's a great tool. So we try, if we don't have it, we try to get it, you know, the, the magazine covers travel. It covers real estate, which you would find real estate. Yeah. We've sold six homes out of the magazine.

Speaker 1 (43m 6s): Wow.

Speaker 2 (43m 7s): You know, so it's, it's realtors out there, you know, Hey, we, we have a really good package for you. If you wanna put your real estate in.

Speaker 1 (43m 13s): And there's also stakes at the Mustang ranch that, you know, if there's one thing I learned today, that's, that's probably the greatest one now. Now, where do you think I'm kidding? Where do you think the swinging scene needs to change and improve?

Speaker 2 (43m 28s): I think that's going to, that's gonna come on the techno technology side. Hmm. I think you're gonna see the websites that are older. That, that look like they've been around since, I don't know, since I was a baby, they that's where, where the money's gonna be spent. Yep. That's where the changes are gonna, you're gonna see in applications such as apps and websites, you're gonna see these resorts. There's new resorts popping up to KR lifestyle. I think desire just opened up two new resorts in the Dominican.

Hmm. So there's, there's more of it coming around. It's not in your face, but it's there. And if you're in the scene, you know where, where to go to get, see, go to visit these places.

Speaker 1 (44m 14s): Now, how do you think people in the lifestyle are different between the USA and Europe?

Speaker 2 (44m 20s): Oh gosh. Between the difference between the USA and Europe. We're we're, we're, we're nothing compared to Europe. Europe is so much more laid back. Just, I mean, they will actually put, put the name of their Springer's club on the wall outside here. It's it's, that's taboo. You don't put the name of it. You just put the address and people show up and you go and they go through a door, you know, nondescript in Europe there very open, they're open to nudity. They're open to their sexuality. It's just, it's a good experience for you to go to Europe and experience that.

Yeah. Because it's like no weather. You, you, when you go to Europe and see that and you come home, you go, oh my God, we're so close minded.

Speaker 1 (45m 2s): You know? Well, you turn on TV there and there's sex on TV. It's not, you know, it's not, it's not hidden on cable.

Speaker 2 (45m 10s): I, I remember the first time as a kid, we were watching mash and I heard Alan Alda say bullshit. That was the big thing back in the day, you know? And, and then when I lived in Canada with my wife on bringing TV, there's a Sopranos and there's a sex scene, you know? Wow. Here in the states, you had to watch the Sopranos on HBO.

Speaker 1 (45m 28s): Yeah.

Speaker 2 (45m 29s): Not in Canada.

Speaker 1 (45m 30s): Yeah. Pretty crazy now. Yes. Where can someone find ASN on social media and how can they contact you?

Speaker 2 (45m 38s): Oh gosh. On social media. We're on Twitter at ASN ASN lifestyle mag. Okay. We're on Pinterest is ASN lifestyle mag. Okay. We're on Facebook ASN lifestyle magazine. And where else are we Twitter? Facebook.

Speaker 1 (45m 59s): I don't know. Where

Speaker 2 (45m 59s): Are you? Oh, Instagram ASN LS. Mag.

Speaker 1 (46m 3s): Okay.

Speaker 2 (46m 4s): Very good. Yeah. And then we're on most of the, the adult swinging lifestyle sites, STC as ASN entertainment. Casty as ASN lifestyle magazine and as ASN lifestyle magazine.

Speaker 1 (46m 22s): Beautiful. Now I, if you started all over again, what would you have done differently?

Speaker 2 (46m 29s): I don't think I would do anything differently. And the reason I say that was because yes, it was hard. Yeah. And I had to, and, and I lost my ass and I lost money. I think it was still the best experience I could have had cuz through that experience is how I grew. And now I'm able to help other people. Yeah. You know, like you had said earlier, there wasn't anybody helping me, you know, we either fell in our ass or, or we made it and we decided we were gonna make it. Sure. So being able to, to have that experience and, and that foundation is what allows us to move forward and continue to grow.

Now, I believe we're continuing to grow every day and every month and every year something's different gonna be about the magazine that had didn't happen the year before.

Speaker 1 (47m 13s): That's awesome. Well, Michael, I'd like to thank you for being our guest today on adult side broker talk and I hope we'll get a chance to do this again real soon,

Speaker 2 (47m 21s): Bruce. I appreciate it. And it it's really a pleasure to speak with you and, and to hear your voice for the first time.

Speaker 1 (47m 27s): Yes, indeed. My broker tip today is part seven of how to buy an adult website. Last week, we talked about the agreement in escrow. So now you own the website. What do you do now? The first thing you should do is make sure you understand everything about the operation of the site. The previous owner will hopefully be available for a period of time to help you with this. As I mentioned last week, you should establish what the former owner's participation will be after the sale you'll need to deal with production of new content processing, paying affiliates, and many other things.

If you don't have experience in these areas, you may want to consider our general consulting firm, adult business consulting. You can get more information on what this company We help website owners, project manage and guide them to the right vendors. Maybe the previous owner had all the right pieces in place, processing, hosting, payments, production, scripts, et cetera. Or maybe they didn't. We can help evaluate that for you. Let us know if we can help.

Anyway, you'll now be operating the website. If you don't have someone like our general consulting firm to help evaluate all of these items and everything, the site is spending money on and using to operate the site, make sure you're getting a good deal and that these companies are providing the right service and check to see if you can do better. Hosting is a great example on something where people are often both overpaying and not getting the right service. Many times a server is just too slow. If you have any questions about any of this, feel free to reach out to us on our website.

Next week. we'll talk about how to sell a site and next week we'll be speaking with sex toy expert Kim Airs. And that's it for this week's adult site broker talk. I'd once again, like to thank my guest, Michael Ramos, talk to you again next week on adult site broker talk. I'm Bruce Friedman.

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