Started in April of 1989, San Francisco-based powerhouse DechTar Direct was the largest advertising company specializing in adult entertainment and mail-order catalog. DechTar was most familiar to companies and consumers under the identity of its principal trademark, Intimate Treasures, the “catalog-of-catalogs” of the adult industry. Their familiar double-truck ads, which appear in 65 national magazines like Cosmopolitan, Playboy, Penthouse and American Woman, feature the wildest available selection of catalogs from over 300 adult companies. The various adult companies contracted with DechTar to appear in these ads, as well as in the “catalog of catalogs” that Intimate Treasures mailed out on a regular basis. In 1996, that “regular basis” amounted to 125 million pages mailed to its highly regarded, extremely valuable and productive mailing list of adult product customer. To give you an idea of how valuable this list is, consider this: an average unsolicited mailing for a consumer product – your basic junk mail – typically yields and response rate of 0.6%. When DechTar sends out one of the catalogs that a customer has requested, the response rate ranges from 3% to an astonishing 10%. That’s results!

With the full range of advertising, mail-list rental, direct-mail sales and sales services that DechTar offers, they acted as partners, not competition, to their clientele.

“We had just about everyone in the adult mail order industry as a client,” CEO Terry Hess declares proudly.

This means that creative services were a key facet of what DechTar offered. After all, if everyone’s catalogs and advertising looked the same, no one would gain much from the advertising, and their fantastic response rate would soon drop. A quick perusal of the many catalogs designed by DechTar revealed a dynamic creative team at work. Sixteen graphic designers and their support personnel, all under the direction of marketing and creative services Chief Melissa Shane, were pros in their field.

Given the huge growth in sales of adult product in the mail-order arena it the time, it’s no surprise that from a standing start in 1989, the catalog request program generated over $4.4 million in revenues in 1995. It was a real tribute to the management, marketing and creative capabilities of the DechTar team to note that from 1993, the first year of full-scale operations of the creative services division of the business, that revenues from ad agency services mounted to over $2.3 million. In other words. These folks had proven that the tiny piece of sales they take in for the catalog is well worth the price.

Unfortunately, DechTar was forced to close after a failed IPO in 1998. This website is a testament to the many people who worked hard to make DechTar Direct and the Intimate Treasures program a success.


Taken from AVN Magazine May 1997.