Dejamor Spices Up Stale Relationships with "Romance in a Box"

By Erin Griffith , written on August 8, 2012

From The News Desk

Dejamor didn't set out to be in the romance business. The site's founders, having built ecommerce companies before, entered DreamIt Ventures' latest class to build a digital marketing software company. Somehow three months later they ended up standing behind a rose petal-covered table showcasing boxes of bubble bath.

At one point in the program they joked about a subscription sex toy company, which was funny until they found out Boink Box is an actual thing. While selling romantic experiences seems like a far cry from the founders' original and very un-sexy plan to sell marketing software, co-founder Rodrigo Fuentes had had the idea for Dejamor floating around in the back of his head for years. As the team began to refine it, they got validation for the idea every step of the way.

And now at DreamIt Ventures' Demo Day in New York, they're selling boxed romance for $30 a month.

The company's goal is to keep the spark alive in relationships, a problem that no shortage of books, marriage counselors, weekend getaways and sex toys have attempted to solve. Each monthly package includes separate boxes for the guy and girl (or girl and girl, or guy and guy). They include instructions for a romantic experience such as surprising your girlfriend with a trail of rose petals to the bathroom, where a bubble bath waits with a love note floating in a vial. The idea is that it's not some ridiculous sex trick from Cosmo, rather just an idea and a few tools to create a sincere, romantic moment.

The feedback on its first few hundred subscriptions sold has been 100 percent positive, which was actually a little unexpected, CTO Chris Caruso says. The company's early Net Promoter score is an impressive 8.9.

It's just in the first month; upcoming boxes will include personalization. Subscribers answer a handful of simple questions about their level of sexual adventurousness, their family, and their relationship.

Regular readers know how I feel about subscription commerce. (Hint: I'm not bullish.) But Dejamor has a few things going for it. For one, the company isn't married (ha) to it's subscription model. It will give customers the option of receiving fewer boxes per year. And unlike certain sub-comm companies I've tried, they're not in any way shady about cancellation, returns, or surprise "credit" billings. The founders understand the rigors of digital marketing and have been steadily raising conversion rates since they launched.

For two, most of Dejamor's subscribers are men. That is important because men aren't known to be subscribers to boxes of things, even though plenty of sub-comm companies are desperate to serve them, nor are they keen on taking romantic advice from strangers. Since Dejamor is not personal but for the relationship, men are less likely to cancel. Or at least, that's what the company is banking on. Unless a subscriber is disappointed in the actual contents of the box, canceling would send a signal that he is "giving up on the relationship."

Which means the pressure is on for Dejamor to impress its subscribers each month. For that, they've enlisted the help of relationship expert and sexologist Annette Gates. They've also tapped a network of sexperts for advice.

The field of relationship help is awash in stereotypes, from the cheesy love therapists to the uncomfortably comfortable sex gurus (and of course lovable vets like Sue Johanson and Dr. Ruth). Dejamor is attempting to carve out it's own place with a simple, romantic solution that, if effective, might prevent couples from seeking a counselor to begin with.