Jenna Jameson: An Interview with a Heartbreaker
by Kath Blackwell
From Las Vegas Showgirl to one of the most recognized adult film stars of our time, Jenna Jameson is definitely more than meets the eye. They say that beauty is only skin deep, but Jenna has proven many times over that she is much more than just a pretty face. Her personality, strength of being, intelligence, sense of humor and business smarts have impressed fans, critics and colleagues over the years, giving support and proof of her genuine star quality to the world.
Jenna's business smarts have led her to expand her career horizons to include a new presence on the World Wide Web. Her membership website, ClubJenna.com, boasts many recurring members who enjoy all of the personal touches that Jenna lends to the daily content of the site. A brand new webmaster affiliate program at JennaCash.com, invites adult webmasters to reap the benefits of the Jenna Jameson name and fan market making $35 per active member.
Klixxx Magazine was fortunate enough to catch up with Jenna amid her hectic schedule for an interview in her Arizona home. What does Jenna think about the adult Internet industry? How much is she involved with the creation and promotion of ClubJenna? What does Jenna think about retaining recurring members? The surprising and interesting answers to these and more questions are within this profile of The Heartbreaker.
Klixxx: Jenna, first of all I just wanted say thank you for making time for this interview today. I know you've been busy going back and forth between home and LA for photo shoots and appearances. You have such an impressive career - I've been going over your bio and the awards, the landmark achievements...it's all quite amazing. What would you say are your most important career high points? Things that have stood out in your mind most that have helped you get to where you are today?
Jenna: Wow...that's a big question. Well, I've pretty much done it all when it comes to the adult industry. A lot of people would say it's the awards or the big films that were the most important. But one time that stands out the most for me was the Cannes Film festival a year ago where I walked the red carpet alone. I didn't have a date or anything and I was worried nobody would know who I was or take any pictures. But when I came out they were screaming Jenna! Jenna! That felt so good.
Klixxx: I can't believe you were worried people wouldn't know who you are! I mean, you're Jenna Jameson!
Jenna: I did though, because I was following people like Nicole Kidman and Tom Cruise, I mean - I'm just an adult star. But it was really cool. I made a mental note to myself to remember that event as one of the really high points of my career.
Klixxx: I could go on and on about your extensive photo, magazine and film career, but since Klixxx Magazine is primarily a resource for adult webmasters I think we'll just start diving right in to talk about your new website ClubJenna.com. How and when did the website get started and how much of a role have you been playing in its development?
Jenna: It all got started about a year and a half ago. I had just started thinking about it at that time. I had a website with the adult company I was under contract with, but I wasn't really involved with it like I wanted to be. I was focusing on my career. I realized I was at the top of my game and that the industry was going more toward the Internet and that I could reach more people...so when my contract ended I decided to put everything into it.
Klixxx: How long after ClubJenna launched did you open up your webmaster affiliate program?
Jenna: We didn't open that until the site had been going about six months. We wanted to fine tune everything and make sure we had a large content base first.
I've been totally hands-on with this project. I'm not a computer genius but I am learning. It started out with me being artistically involved in the look and overall layout, but now I'm starting to learn more about what it takes to be a successful company and website - and it's really starting to work well. People really seem to take notice when the star is actually involved in the development and operations of the site.
Klixxx: Well, I guess that leads perfectly into my next question. What do you feel makes ClubJenna stand out from all of the other adult film star sites that are in today's market?
Jenna: I answer all my own e-mails, I do bi-weekly chats...and I take into account what my fans want to see. I don't do just the same old crap that you see everywhere else. [The fans] e-mail me and tell me what they want to see and the next day we'll have it on the site.
Klixxx: Typically, how is Club Jenna getting new members - is it more via just the Jenna Jameson name recognition, or is it through webmaster referral, interviews, promos or through Web advertising?
Jenna: It's a compilation of all of those things. My name is one of the most downloaded on the Internet and my publicity through working with Howard Stern is huge. Then there're the things I've been doing with the E! Channel and the mainstream film things I'm doing too. They all add up.
The affiliate program has really upped our membership since we launched it. In the beginning I didn't really know what it took to get this all going - it's not just like "I'm Jenna - join my site." (laughs) It's a lot more involved than that.
Klixxx: This is a question that has been debated between adult webmasters for years, but in your opinion, do you feel it's better to work hard to retain members or on converting new ones?
Jenna: Both are definitely important, but I think my main thing is retaining my members and keeping them happy. You have people come in and if you just have a regular site that's not updated frequently, then the word gets out that it's not a good site. It's a small community out there. I focus on making constant updates.
Klixxx: What do you feel is the element or elements that retain members at Club Jenna the most?
Jenna: Our forum is a wonderful element of ClubJenna. When we first started, we didn't have it, and since I surf the 'Net constantly I noticed that the free websites have these forums so you can post all your thoughts and things. It really keeps your members because then they can talk to each other, discuss things and in return become like a family. Communication is definitely the most important element.
Klixxx: What goals do you have for the future of ClubJenna? Is there anything you'd like to see added that would make your site even more appealing to your fans?
Jenna: Definitely! Right now we're working on a live Web chat so the members can see me chatting live with them. If I were a fan, that's what I would want to see. The only downfall is that I can't look bad...I'll have to do my hair every day. (laughs) But this will be good because nobody ever believes it's really me - there are so many Jenna imposters on the Web.
Klixxx: How do you see the relationship between adult film stars and the Internet? Do you think it's a positive relationship or are there any negative feelings?
Jenna: It's an incredibly positive thing. I want to be one of the first girls out there to take advantage of the Internet. Most haven't realized how awesome and lucrative it is. I want to be one of the first who does it and does it well.
There are definite negative feelings though because a lot of the times when adult stars try to be a CEO of their own company nobody takes you seriously or thinks you know what you're talking about. They talk down to you and act like you don't have a clue.
Klixxx: I read on your website and in your bio that you enjoy working on your computer. You also appear regularly in the chat room at ClubJenna... What are some of your favorite sites to surf when you aren't hanging out at your website?
Jenna: I hate to say it but I'm a huge online shopper. I don't get much chance to do any shopping with my work schedule. I'm constantly on eBay.com even though they keep kicking my ass off... but I also go to a lot of adult webmaster forums and I read klixxx.com and Vivid.com all the time. I'm just trying to stay informed on what's going on in the industry and see what everyone else is doing...it's important to do a lot of research.
Klixxx: If you were just getting started today with all the new technologies, opportunities and interests, where do you think you would begin your career? Would you start with modeling, photos, film or Internet-based work?
Jenna: I would definitely start with the Internet - that's where it's at. But that's kind of hard for someone just getting started because it's not as easy to be successful if you don't have a big name. There aren't a lot of things I would change about where I've come from and what I've done though. I've had a great run and it's only getting better.
Klixxx: I must confess that I'm a fan as well. I met you at an the AVN awards show a couple years ago and was very impressed by how articulate and personable you were. Many other women - and men - in the adult webmaster industry have commented to me over the years about what a good role model you are in so many ways. As a role model, what advice would you give to someone that is considering getting into the adult industry either as a model, a cam girl, an amateur or perhaps even heading towards a professional film and photo career? What steps should they take to become a success?
Jenna: The very first thing I tell girls when they are thinking of building their own website is - OWN YOUR OWN CONTENT. Some girls shoot too much for photographers that use the content all over the Web and they don't reap benefits for it. You should compile as much content as you can. It's important to make yourself exclusive. Don't have content everywhere - I learned that the hard way.
When I first started Club Jenna I did a simple search online and 175,000 websites came up with me listed in their titles and on their sites. I thought "what have I done?" and it's been hard to hunt down these people who are stealing my content. That's the #1 item of advice I can give. Even if you aren't ready to launch your own site, just keep shooting for yourself.
Klixxx: It's hard to get to know the "REAL" Jenna Jameson from your films, photos and many interviews. In conclusion today, is there something about yourself that would really tell us "who you are" that you've always secretly hoped someone would ask?
Jenna: (laughs) Well, I've always been very open about who I am...I've had a lot of bad feedback because I don't hold my tongue. I'm very outspoken. One thing I would like people to know is that I'm really normal. A lot of people just see this sex symbol, but I'm a pretty normal person and you'll find that out in the members' area of Club Jenna. I'm honestly just like the girl next door - well, the girl next door gone bad.
Klixxx: Thank you Jenna for your time and honest answers. I look forward to hearing more about the successes of ClubJenna.com and JennaCash.com in the future!
Jenna: You're very welcome.