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Salvage the Summer Slump and Outsell the Competition

Are you prepared for the summer slump?

You know the one we are talking about. The one where summer sales slow to a glacial pace because everyone is spending money on vacations, summer activities, and not on their home or their sleep. In this episode, we are tackling the slump head on, and challenging you to do things you have never done before. We’re pulling ideas out of the Amazon Bestseller, Come Back to Bed (authored by yours truly) and discussing why the summer slumps happen and problems in our industry that perpetuate this cycle (hint: if our products and services are not adding value in people’s lives, they won’t view sleep as a priority).

We are shaking up summer 2022, and making it the year of new adventures and new experiences for our customers!

FULL TRANSCRIPT

Mark Kinsley 

Is a big summer slump on the way how do you salvage the summer? We’re going to revisit the summer of sleep inspiration that came from this very podcast from one of the top thinkers in the industry and hey, we crack open come back to bed because if that slump is on the way we want you to be prepared and prepare now the does Marco show begins in 60 seconds

Mark Kinsley 

can I give a big big shout out? Can I give a shout out right out of the gates to Maureen coffee. You’d have to yell at Anna Yellin Maureen coffee dish, Maureen says she’s our number one fan and I think that’s true. And she listened to our podcast about how to tap into the wedding industry and tapping into more nuptials in 2022, than at any time since 1984. How can the mattress industry benefit from that? Well, we want to say congratulations Maureen and to the entire coffee family because you my number one fan. Our number one fan have a daughter named Carolyn. Or is it Caroline? I’m sure it’s Carolyn. Getting married coming up in June. So congratulations. The fam is growing. And thank you for sending us a text on our podium number which you can do through fam dot news. You can text us how cool is that?

Mark Quinn 

pretty freakin cool. And congratulations. That’s very exciting. Did you? Did they post that in and see did they post our wedding pictures?

Mark Kinsley 

Oh, our wedding pictures? Yeah, we sent our wedding pictures to Adrian, did Adrian post them. Adrian as our producers did this. She probably did at some point or maybe she’s gonna put them in social.

Mark Quinn 

Yeah, I think she probably is. But anyway, yeah, that was a good episode. But that’s what this is about. Mr. Kinsley it’s about people like Maureen. Thank you, Maureen, for listening. We love you. And trying to figure it out. Because you know something, guys, it’s the success favours the creative mind these days. And so, as we’re looking at summer and inflation, and all of the negatives out there, you can’t turn on the TV, it’ll make you want to strangle yourself, I think, a lot of negatives there. So we gotta rise above that and go, okay, in light of all that crap. You know, how do we march forward? And how do we make sure we have a kick butt summer selling season, and it just so happens? Kinsley, we’ve written about this already.

Mark Kinsley 

We have in our book, come back to bed, which was a number one Amazon bestseller, and Forbes recommended it as its number one book to read for 2021. We’ve written about this idea of making sure that you’re planning out how you’re going to drive foot traffic to your store. And of course, we’re going into the very first part of this book talking about if you don’t know who you are, you’re going to be scared to go out and champion your message and shout it from the rooftops. So if you haven’t done that brand work, definitely go through the book, come back to bed and get your identity and your position in your marketplace clear. But beyond that, you need to start thinking about if a slump is on the way do you just give up? Take your ball and your cleats and your bat and go home? No, we’re gonna compete well now we’re gonna compete and if you are somebody that’s like, Oh, I’m just gonna blame it on The economy, or I’m gonna blame it on some other factor than this podcast is not for you, you should turn it off right now. But if you’re somebody who looks at a situation and says, Good, the summer slump is coming. Inflation is here, interest rates are rising, the war in Ukraine is causing all kinds of other economic factors to be out of whack. And you look at all that and say, Good, this podcast is for you. And what I mean by that is if you genuinely say good to those scenarios, you say, what is this allow me to do. This allows me to be more creative, creative, more connected to people to get more ideas, and allows me to dig deeper inside myself and grow. And that’s what this is about. So if this slump, that everybody’s keeps talking about the economists, the business analysts, even people in the industry is coming, then we have to prepare for that right now. So I want you to get out pen and paper and I want you to start thinking about your goals, I want you to actually put a SMART goal down on paper Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Realistic, and time based, like actual goals, and go after it. And we had a great example of this last summer with Dr. V, and Miss skellies, during the summer of sleep. And he decided if we are going to do what we’ve never done, we have to do what we’ve never done. And they put together a plan. And they executed on that plan. And they shattered sales records for the bedding and mattress department. I’m a skellies. And it was really impressive. And it was having a clear goal in front of them. And it was executing on that and communicating that to the team. And we got to see behind the scenes of that as it went along. And I think that everybody needs to start preparing right now, if you haven’t already done that, and not just give up and go home. And if you haven’t listened to the episode about weddings and how to tap into that this really follows in the wake of that really well. So we want we want you to get your ideas going and flow it right when

Mark Quinn 

no doubt, let’s flow. But here at Kinsey, I just want to make a point. Before we get into some of those ideas, guys think about it this way. Right. So we’re in the QAT, if you’re listening to this on your treadmill, or in your car, or whatever you might be doing sitting by a pool, hopefully, then you need to think of it through the lens of the consumer, most people get into the market, because they have to get into the market, very few people are like, Oh my gosh, the new summer collection of mattresses is out, I have to go shop them and see what the newest innovation is not happening, right? People are in the market because of a transfer transformation or an event in their life, right. And so they’re driven into the market. And so if people have less disposable income today, more than ever, it is critical that we as a category are getting people to understand that the rest of the purchases on their list can be delayed, the mattress purchase cannot be delayed. The pillow purchase cannot be delayed. It is critical. Because a good quality sleep is what gives you that happiness and good quality life. If we aren’t building value in what we sell to the degree to move to the top of the list, and not being pushed down to the bottom of the list because people have less money to spend, we’re not going to win. And I don’t care how many sales you run, if you don’t make it relevant, and figure out a way to make people really absolutely want what you have, and make it something that they can’t postpone, then it is all for nothing. Do you agree with that? 100%

Mark Kinsley 

I do absolutely value people make decisions on price. Okay, and absent of value, people make decisions on other things that aren’t in their field of view. So if you don’t elevate the importance of the mattress, guess where they’re going to spend their money on more travel? Or you could say people are going to travel more this year than at pretty much any time in history. I mean, that’s what some of the data is suggesting people tonnes of pent up demand around travel. Can you tap into the relevance of people wanting to do travel and hook your waggon? To that desire? Yes, you can. Because there’s no feeling like the feeling you have when you come home to a bed you love after a great vacation. Sometimes you sleep so great on your vacation, and you come home and your sleep is so terrible. What if you slept like you were on vacation? Now’s the time to buy that mattress, look at what’s happening in the world be relevant to where the dollars are going. And now you’re making in that conversation about you in that thing. And it’s not about anybody else. It’s not about a TV. It’s not about an iPad. It’s not about a new pair of shoes. You’re hitching your waggon to a relevant topic where people are already going to spend their money. So I think that’s the type of awareness we need is to understand what is happening in the world that are the past positives and to connect yourself to that, and then be fearless. Be fearless with your promotions. Be fearless with your message about building value and sleep. If you are, if you’re scared, you’re dead to begin with people are going to feel that fear and everything you do, come at it with confidence, knowing that the purpose behind what you’re telling people they need to buy is pure, because it is. When people ask me what I do, I say I help people get a better night’s sleep. I said, I work in the mattress industry. And we’re all about helping people get a great night’s sleep. This guy said this to a guy yesterday. He goes, it’s a third of your life. And I go thank you, I usually have to tell people that. And then they’re shocked at the recognition and the reminder that it is a third of their life.

Mark Quinn 

You know, you can take a trip to Florida for a week, you can go to Greece, there’s no no doubt you can do that. And enjoy yourself for a week or two. Or you can buy yourself a brand new bed that kicks butt and enjoy yourself every single night you lay down in your room. Right?

Mark Kinsley 

Well, what I’m saying, what I’m saying is you don’t have to make it about either or, you know, because you’re right. I mean, you could we could

Mark Quinn 

Well, I mean, they may not have much money. I mean, they they may have to make a choice.

Mark Kinsley 

Fair, fair point, right.

Mark Quinn 

I mean, we don’t all host the galaxy’s greatest mattress podcast. Kinsley,

Mark Kinsley 

we don’t definitely yeah, that’s, that’s a two man lift right there.

Mark Quinn 

Yeah, so we’ve got a lot of hay. But

Mark Kinsley 

let’s think about that. And let’s, let’s overcome that objection. So if somebody is saying, I don’t have enough money, because I want to go to Florida, I can’t buy matches right now. That’s when you introduce financing. That’s when you say you put it into dollars per day or dollars per week. And you say, you don’t have to delay this, because you want to take a trip down to the Panhandle. You want to go to Florida Bama line, and see the Pepsi Gulf Coast jam. Speaking from experience here, right on introduced financing, and you just use that, to introduce all these specials that you have or, you know, remind people that it’s not an either or proposition. And many, many people when they purchase a mattress because it is more of an expensive item. And we put it the adjustable base, the pillows and sheets and all that on top of it. It’s going to cost X amount. So I think that’s where you can use financing options to your advantage as a marketing tool.

Mark Quinn 

And drive it hard and absolutely right. And you know, people are struggling. And so that is definitely something what is the offer? How are you going to structure it and and lean into it hard give give people some help on that? No question. So Kinsley, you and I were talking about the book. And we were talking about different things, you and I have collected a speech we gave at a nationwide event. And we collected a bunch of ideas about how to, you know, help people drive traffic, and create you new, unique opportunities for people to come in the store, you want to throw out a couple of

Mark Kinsley 

those. Yeah. And first, I think I want to give people the framework that we have used in the book, because we want what you do in your business, and then your community or however you approach it, to be authentic to who you are, because that’s going to be sustainable. And when it’s sustainable, that traction that you build up leads to momentum, and hopefully to some sort of flywheel effect. So what I mean by that is, we have an acronym we call a cage. And so when you’re thinking about how you get plugged in, and really differentiate your business, you get plugged into your community, you can provide answers, you can give and create experiences, community answers, giving experiences. And in the book, we use the example of Jeff Shire, you know, so go to see a CIO answers. He’s a great educator. He even has a platform called the educator. And so he provides better education to customers on the front end, he’s really good at answering questions about components and mattress builds and body types and how your body interacts with it. So that was authentic to who he was. He enjoyed writing and thinking and delivering that value to people. Whereas other people they want to give in mattress Mac checks a couple of these boxes, he’s very involved in the community. He literally started a trade school connected to Gallery Furniture or on the property nearby. And of course, he likes to give back to his community, everything from the high water truck he built to rescue people in the Houston flooding, to the charitable contributions he gives. So you know, you pick a couple of these things, and you start introducing them as part of your business. It’s part of your identity, a part of your values and it demonstrates your values. And when you do that, to people, the right folks are going to connect with those values and they’re gonna come do business with you So that’s kind of the general framework. And then we get into, you know, pulling those levers and the specifics of that. And we have over 70 examples we got that are literally captured in the back of the book.

Mark Quinn 

Come back to bed. Right there. You know what I like? What I like about what you said on the cage example. It’s really hard. And one of the reasons we wrote that part of the book mark is because so many people will have a hard time telling their story. And so what we were really trained to do is give people to construct in a way to figure out different types of things they can share. And, you know, their involvement in the community, their ability to help and serve people with answers their ability to give, you know, create experiences, it’s like, you know, that it’s so funny, you and I can go visit a retailer. And it’s happened so many times, where we’ve sat down with people, and we listen to them tell their story. And we’re just like, that’s so cool. And I love that your grandfather came out of World War Two, and he started the business and, and then we go to their website. And it’s like, just that nothing, right? And we’re like, how, how is it you have this whole cool thing to talk about. But yet you don’t bring it to life in any way so that people can have some affection for what you do. And so that’s why we talked about cage. So you know, give people a glimpse into the soul of your business, and let them see what you’re about. So they can choose to do business with you that way. I was

Mark Kinsley 

talking to my buddy, our buddy Trent ranneberger Not too long ago. And I was just like, going through some of what he’s done, to really stand out. And he has some amazing stories, we’re gonna have to get him on the podcast at some point just to tell some of the stories, and maybe some snackable ways. But you know, he says, You got to be different. You got to stand out. And I said, But Trent, I understand what you’re saying, because I think this way, but how how would you explain to somebody or coach somebody on how to be different and stand out? And he said, you know, whenever he first started out, you know, he’s 2728 years old, but he had worked in the industry. So when he was first starting out on his own, he was the, you know, I’m in a nice shirt, and I’m with my family, and we’re talking about being a local business. And he said, it just, it just wasn’t hitting home for him. And so one day, the cable company that shot his TV commercials came over. And she said, Okay, what are we doing today? He goes, I don’t know. But I’m going to be up on the roof. And she said, I don’t know if that’s the best idea to be up on the roof of your building. He’s, he said, we’re going to do it. And so he had to go through this little costume shop in the in the strip centre, where he’s located where Trent bedding is located. To get up to the roof of the building, you didn’t have a ladder to climb up, you had to go up through this costume shop, just to get up on the roof. And so he goes up on the roof. And on his way up through the costume shop, something caught his eye. And so he but he left it alone went up on the roof. They filmed this commercial, the lighting is perfect, the sound is crisp, all of the shots turned out very clear. And so they put it together. And they showed it to him. And he said, We got to reshoot it. And they said, This is the best commercial we’ve ever done. Well, what had happened was when he went went through that costume shop to get up on the roof of his building. He had seen an Uncle Sam costume. And it caught his eye and he thought it was funny. And he had had that Americana feel to it. And he said, No, let’s go back up on the roof again. And this time I’m going to be in an Uncle Sam costume. So he got up on the roof and his Uncle Sam costume, the shot the commercial, the audio is complete shit. The framing and the shots weren’t crisp and clear. And the lighting was awful. And Trent saw it and he said I don’t care. Run it. He said I don’t care run it.

Mark Quinn 

The classic bad small town comer

Mark Kinsley  

classic bad Small Town Commercial. Yes. Hey, he didn’t end up on the world’s dumbest for just for no reason. Okay, top he was number six on the top 25. So that idea produced an immediate positive response. And immediate positive response. People were coming to the store people were calling him and that idea fueled Fred Flintstone Elvis Austin power and him saying what can we do that’s even crazier every single time. And he got rid of that mould that he was in. He got rid of the fear. Maybe there was fear but he just decided to overcome it every single time. And that’s what being different does for your business. Because we live in a noisy over communicated world, it is easy to ignore almost everything unless you rattle somebody’s cage.

Mark Quinn 

And don’t go putting Elvis costumes on if that’s not your brand, right. So that’s what Mark and I were talking about. There’s things in the book to help you understand your brand better. But for trinet work, I love it. And that’s how we got little Trent. That’s how we got by doing that. So we have limited time. So Kinsey, I’ve turned it in the book to the back page. And with just a couple minutes we have left here. I have picked out a couple of things I really liked. Are you ready with them? Okay, so we talked in here about the throne rolls idea at Lambert’s. So having some kind of little tchotchke that everyone gets when you walk into this restaurant, you can get pegged right in the face with a hot buttery roll. And so I like the idea of a little something for free that you can give someone I think that’s kind of neat. also love the car show, right? So create traffic to your store, even though maybe they’re not going to come in to buy a mattress. But if you have a car show in your parking lot, or you have some kind of a you know, a scooter race or, you know, whatever it is in the parking lot to benefit charity, bring people to your store, create traffic to your store, even though maybe it doesn’t have anything to do with mattresses. Last last idea on that. Seth Carson’s with mattress sleeps, and he says he wrote hoverboards, all around town, and he talked to every customer about sleep, even that I like he should do address and I just

Mark Kinsley 

did something recently where Trailblazers is a great organisation here in town in Bentonville, that’s really guiding the community toward a better biking world, in so many different ways. And that’s just the tip of the iceberg. But they had an event where they partnered with a brewery. And so everybody went over to Ozark brewery and had a great outdoor space. And they had a bike there, because that’s in context right there connected to cycling. And so the bike, everybody signed up to change a flat tire. So they had one of the local bike shops there. And then you had to go over and they kind of helped you a little bit, get it all prepared. And of course, I signed up. And I used to be the king of changing flats, because I had a flat every 10 seconds. But everybody changed the flat. And there was music playing and people were cheering for each other. And they wrote your times down. And everybody’s grabbing beer and $1 from every beer that you drank, went to the charity trailblazers. And so thinking about how you can tap into where people want to hang out, and what activities they want to do. And then creating activities around the product itself. I mean, think about all that fun stuff you could do at a brewery with a mattress, you know, who can jump the highest, you know, on on the spring mattress and just having maybe mattress races of some sort. So just use your creativity. Remember, in the book, we said all the time, a brainstorm is for a volume of ideas, then you sleep. You make those creative kept connections not possible during your conscious waking hours. Then you come back to your brainstorm bucket and you select your ideas because you’re gonna you’re maybe even having new ideas at that point. So don’t shut anything down. Go big. And definitely don’t go home. With your cleats and your bat and your ball leaving the field it is time to overcome and salvage the summer slump. You don’t have to have the SummerSlam min.

Mark Quinn 

There’s no reason choose not to participate. That’s what I say and get to the top of that list, AKA a top of the list or the bottom of the list. Get yourself to the top

Mark Kinsley 

man it gets yourself right to the top of our page at fam dot news and subscribe to get the newsletter rate Allah Grayza has an amazing newsletter coming out every Thursday only from the fam. He is the godfather of the furniture industry and he’s putting his thoughts down on paper raw, unfiltered and uncensored and we love every minute of it. I’m a reader and I’m a fan. And be sure to subscribe to our podcast leave us a review and let us know what are your ideas what are your ideas to salvage this summer and leave it all on the field and inject every moment with creativity we appreciate you being here. Quinn You look awesome today man I just had to set quarter zip is all you

Mark Quinn 

you know what all my wife actually I feel good. I’m ready for the summer asleep. I hope you guys are to!

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