Retail Podcast 611: Mark Kinsley and Mark Quinn Celebrate a Good Sleep
Join me on this last episode of the season as I talk and laugh with co-authors of Come to Bed and co-hosts of Dos Marcos Mark Quinn and Mark Kinsley on this episode of Tell Me Something Good About Retail. These two guys were some of the most animated guests of the whole season. We share the same ideas of how to compete in your brick-and-mortar stores.
Tell me something good about retail
Mark Kinsley and Mark Quinn: Celebrate a Good Sleep
Bob: Today is a twofer. We’re talking with Mark Kinsley, president, and CEO of Englander, a top 15 U.S. mattress company founded in 1894. He’s also the co-author of the number one Amazon best-selling book “Come Back To Bed,” and the co-host of the “Dos Marcos” show. And his co-host, Mark Quinn, the co-founder of the Spink and Company bedding company. The Queen likes what they do so much that she brings him to Buckingham Palace for tea and gives them awards. Welcome “Dos Marcos.”
Quinn: Hey Bob, how are you?
Bob: I’m doing well. Excellent.
Quinn: Good. Well for having us. We’re fired up.
Kinsley: Great to be here.
Bob: So speaking of fired up, how did you come up with the title “Come Back to Bed?” Do you have a vodka that goes with this or how?
Quinn: Well, we’re trying to tie it back to the bedding category. Here’s the problem with the title of the book. In a vacuum, it’s a great idea because it’s tied to the mattress, and it’s provocative and all that. The problem is, when you find us on Amazon, we’re next to Fabio and all the romance novels. So we’re in the soft porn category, but we’re really not.
Bob: And the artwork does not support what you’re saying.
Quinn: No, not at all.
Kinsley: We actually came up with the title of the book because we wrote it during all the pandemic shutdowns and we were thinking to ourselves, on the backside of this we’re all going to have to make some sort of comeback. So, originally the title was swirling around this idea of how are we going to make a comeback? What does a comeback look like? And then when we got further down the path of publishing the book, our team rallied around said, “Hey, you got to be in your niche. You got to make it maybe ‘Come Back to Bed.’ “And we’re like, “Okay, it still works. We can at least tell the story behind it.”
Bob: Well, that’s what we’re doing here today. So, you said in a promo video that you share tactics without slimy promotions. Are there authors that do that in their materials?
Kinsley: Well, I think that’s accurate. So, in the mattress industry, on a trust scale, mattress salespeople tend to rank below used-cars salespeople. And so, we know that there’s a certain slimy factor that goes on in the mattress industry. And Quinn and I, and a lot of good actors in our industry are very intentional about making sure that people need to understand the connection between a mattress and better sleep, and how you spend a third of your life on this object, and you need to make sure that you get one that fits your body. So, we wanted to make sure that people are connecting the benefits of better sleep to the products we sell. Because otherwise, the sleep aid companies and exercise industry, they’re going to do it, and they’ve done it quite successfully. So yes, we don’t want to focus on the promotions because it devalues what we actually deliver. So we wanted to give people principles they can apply to help them build valuable...
Quinn: So, to add on to that, Bob, it’s so crazy, because here we are in the mattress industry. And I encourage anyone listening to this no matter what business you’re in, what’s the purpose, right? What’s the why behind it? So, there’s so much, the advertising in our space, maybe 95%, 98% is product price and promotion. And so, I get it, you need to swing the door, that’s fine. But you can’t tell us that there’s not room in that radio spot television ad or on your website to not bring people to the core benefit to the consumer. Because think about it, the joke we kind of make is if the Chief Marketing Officer for Coca Cola got a phone call from his lab and they said, “Hey, we have a new version of coke, good news. This version of Coke will help you look better. It’ll help you be happier, live a better quality of life, improve your sex life, improve the frequency of your sex life, help you be sick less often. And we’re going to go to market with it.” The Chief Marketing Officer for Coca-Cola is going to be like, “Holy crap, that’s amazing. Let’s go.” The question is, would their advertising look different? And the answer is, hell yes, it would look different. And so, that’s the list that we have in the mattress category because sleep can deliver all of those really positive outcomes. But yet, we choose not to lead with that story, so much of the time it’s product price and promotion, and it’s a huge miss for people.
Bob: So that leads me to mattresses can be seen as a commodity. So just like a hotel room, which I started out within the hotel, it’s just a bed, I don’t need the whole hotel. You’re like, “Shut up.” But people still say it. And it seems to be that so many people buy into that, like in your own industry, Bob’s discount mattress bed emporium. So, why the hell are you the rarity? That’s what I struggle with when there are pretty significant mattress companies that are getting $50,000, $100,000, $200,000 beds. And they’re just a bed too. Isn’t it kind of how you approach the industry and how you see yourself?
Kinsley: That’s absolutely true. I mean, what is the story you tell yourself each and every day when you wake up. And if your story is we sell white rectangles, and we’re trying to get money out of people’s pockets and put it in my pocket, then that’s the story you’re going to live, and you are going to devalue the products that you sell. It is going to be a commodity. But if the story you tell yourself every day when you wake up is, “I get to go change somebody’s life, and once every decade.” Think about this, if your family member came to your house and you didn’t have social media or phones or anything else, and you got to talk to them once every 10 years, how important would that interaction be with your family member, with your loved ones? It would be of the highest importance. That’s what’s happening in a retail environment when people come in to buy a mattress. Once every 10 years, you get to have a critical, transformational life-changing conversation with somebody who’s suffering a problem. And that’s what you have to remember, problems own sleep. Problems own almost anything in retail when people come and show up and they try to buy something to fix an issue they’re having.
Bob: But see I’m going to interrupt you because that’s what I do. Retail sells hope, my friend. That’s what you’re selling. That’s what I think we got to get people to understand. It’s not the problem, it’s are you taking a shot every night to go to bed? Yes. Are you paying...sleep aids are up 30% this year? Would you like to get off of that? Yes, I’ve got the solution. But we get caught up into thread count, and foam, and all of these, and think that that helps the situation. I really loved the idea you had somewhere that said, oh, I’ll talk about that in a minute, a webinar you guys did. But that idea that “Oh, we just give them all these reasons, it’s more money.” It’s like you’re making it a lot harder for me to get the solution.
Quinn: So, to tag on to what you said in what Kinsley said, like everyone listening to this, consider this thought. It’s not an opinion, it is fact of the matter that consumers make decision based on passion and emotion. They vote that way, they make decisions to buy products that way. And so one of the things that Kinsley and I do frequently when we’re talking to retailers is, we’ll say, “Let’s just scrub over your website. And I want you to take us through it, and I want you to show us where the emotion is. I want you to show us in the copy where you’re romancing or creating emotional ties to what you do. I want you to show us where your brand is, and how are people connecting to you on an emotional level.” Like the big bucks guys, online guys, that’s tough, you can’t do what they do. You don’t have the marketing budgets, you don’t have the resources, you don’t have the supply chain to advantage you in that way. What you have is your ability to connect on a human level with the consumers in your market. There’s a great billboard that says Amazon is not going to sponsor your kid’s soccer team, right? And so if there isn’t an emotional tug, your kids go to school with the people in that town, lean into that and serve people. What Kinsley said is so true, because it’s like, so when someone comes in the door, you can look at it two ways. You can look at it as, “Hey, here’s a chance to get a transaction on the register for the day.” Or you can look at it as a way to serve that human in a way that’s going to help them improve their life, right? And so we all sell things that can eventually or in some way help people do that. And so, if you’re coming at it from the service side, the consumer knows, trust me. They know if they’re being sold to versus being helped, and that’s where we come at it from.
Bob: All right, Casper, fad, money-losing deduction, or failure, or future. Actually, we could do for all four of those, you could weigh in.
Kinsley: Look, I think Casper has been good for category awareness. So people understanding that a mattress is an important purchase. You see it in markets across the United States whenever Mattress Firm, for example, spends money, in national advertising, they increase that spend, Mattress Firm benefits, but so does the independent retailer across the street. So in terms of category awareness, all the bed-in-the-box companies like Casper have been very good for our industry. I think early on people in this business, the old school guys looked at it and said, “It’s not that good of a product.” And Quinn and I and others were saying, “That does not matter.” That’s not the problem they’re solving. They’re solving other problems of convenience,
Bob: The bed arrives in a box, how cool is that? And I get to do a video of letting it rest on my platform and then come alive. Like, who does that on a basic mattress, right? Of course, they lose $400 or whatever on everyone due to all the marketing. So, you do ask yourself, how does that pencil out.
Quinn: I don’t think Casper is a fad. So, Casper started out really strong and they created a really cool, relevant brand. And they really took bed in the box and commercialized it differently than other people had. They came out saying there’s one bed for everyone’s, mmh, not at all. And so then they pivoted away from that and created more product in their lineup. And a lot of these guys come in and they like the fact that they’re not bedding people, and they come in, and they’re going to disrupt the market. That’s fine, but at the end of the day, because of acquisition costs have gone up so high in our category, because it’s a very profitable category, Bob. So the acquisition costs is high and then return rates are high, because it’s a mattress, when you get the mattress, you’re like, “Eh, I don’t know about that.” And they know they’re going to spend a third of their life on it, so then they want to return it in very liberal return policies.
So now a lot of the online guys are trying to go forward into brick and mortar because they need to become profitable, Casper hasn’t been successful being profitable. Not many of these guys have, and so they need brick-and-mortar distribution. So their native, their origin story is online, and they’re trying to push into brick and mortar, and they’re trying to use the media spend to drive interest, and the hook for the brick and mortar bring that. Okay, that’s fine, but back to Kinsley’s point, the product isn’t that great in a lot of cases here. And when you put that stuff on a brick-and-mortar floor, it doesn’t compete. And so if you look at companies like Tempur-Pedic on the other hand, who was digital native first, they did, the infomercial said, it’s like comfort brilliantly, Sleep Number now. And they built tons of interest, and Tempur-Pedic pushes into brick and mortar. And now, they’re the biggest in the brick and mortar. They navigated that much better than what a lot of the guys are doing today. And so we think that the omnichannel approach is right, but it’s like an industry. Do not underestimate the culture of the segment you’re in, because getting into brick and mortar is not all that easy, and there’s a lot of landmines there. So you really got to be careful how you navigate that, right Kins?
Kinsley: And I add to that and say when you zoom out, and you as a retailer just look at your landscape, whether you’re in the furniture, mattress, business or otherwise, what we’ve seen happen in the mattress industry is a great vehicle, it’s a great narrative to pay attention to because so many of these companies, like Quinn, said, are trying to find brick and mortar distribution so they can get profitable. But ultimately what’s happening, they’re getting into these stores to create a media effect.
Because when they plop a store down in Soho within a mile radius of that store, their online sales are going up by about 32% to 35%. So whenever you merchandise your floor, and you’re these hip young gunslingers, who have these product companies with all kinds of reviews and all the stuff you need, and they’re promising to drive foot traffic, a lot of people are signing on and saying yes, I need that in my store because it’s a relevant brand, and that’s how brands are built these days. But just know they’re getting a media effect of that and their online sales are lifting.
Bob: Yes, and that’s why so many brick and mortar stores, particularly department stores, do not want to close stores because they know that they will drop off online as well. And we are aligned in the way we approach everything. I say retail is a game of being brilliant on the basics to tell me that there’s some new way to sell. Look, let’s all go back to the DNA of Dale Carnegie’s “How to Win Friends and Influence People,” listen, shut the hell up. Understand what interests them, speak to it, and then make it easy. I mean, it’s really like that simple. But you guys gave a webba show is that even a word?
Kinsley: We made it up.
Quinn: We tend to do that. We didn’t...webinars are boring.
Kinsley: We literally made up because we’re like, webinars are boring. And we wanted to put on a show.
Bob: I have one in two hours. Thanks for that, Mark. I appreciate that.
Quinn: No, call it a webba show and people will be like, all right, it’s the Bob Phibbs webba show.
Bob: And I have to give you a nickel every time I use that word, no. Your thing said no-pressure sales give your customers the confidence to buy a mattress on their first visit. And I believe in that, and I’ve worked with several mattress companies along the way, and I learned that when you see people bouncing from bed to bed to bed, that’s like the hallmark red flag of these people have no clue how to sell a mattress, and you’re screwed because your body will only tell you maximum three times because any bed feels good when it’s brand new and hasn’t had 10 years of your body scales, and little flea things or whatever is in mattresses, don’t go there. So, where do so many retailers go wrong? We are talking about pricing and promotion. And how can they go right?
Quinn: In terms of closing a sale on the first call?
Bob: In giving your webba show best answer for giving your customers the confidence to buy the mattress on their first visit. Where do so many go wrong? And how could they go right?
Kinsley: I always say when things go wrong, almost always they went wrong at the beginning. So if people come in under the expectation that they’re going to have a certain experience and you don’t deliver on that, then you’re going to have a breakdown in trust. So, we did a great show on our podcast with a guest, we do not attribute the greatness to us, but the guest told us, “You win or you lose in the transitions.” And if you think about the transition, it’s a transition in the consumer’s mind to go from, “My bed is bad,” to, “I need to buy a bed.” Well, you show up in that transition because all of a sudden they’re paying attention.
Now, you transition from the time they pull into your parking lot until they walk into your front door. So what does that experience look like? It’s very clunky to walk into a retail store and transition from, “I’m here, there’s a guy or a gal, and they’re going to come to me.” That transition of them walking up to you can be very scary. You are the person they fear the most, the salesperson. So think about the transitions and create remarkable, delightful experiences that bridge those transitional gaps. And you’re going to start establishing trust. And Bob, you said something that sings to my soul, which is ask good questions, open-ended questions where you actively listen are your superpower.
Bob: They don’t have time to listen, they just want to get in and out. That’s it, Kinsley, they just want to get in and out. Oh, wait, sorry, that was somebody else’s podcast.
Kinsley: Well, you know, consumers, they’re there. They made the trip. And now, how often do you have somebody that truly listens to you? And you say, “Hey, doing anything fun today?” And then in our business, I think a lot of salespeople are so good. And there are some very talented, empathetic salespeople out there. And they’ll ask about like, “Hey, what’s going on today?” And they’re like, “Well, I got a bad back.” “Oh, let me show you a mattress.” Whoa, pump the brakes. You got a bad back, you should be saying, “Well, what do you make of that?” And let them actually tell you what happened, tell you a story about how they fell off the second rung of a ladder, and they’ve got this injury they’ve dealt with. Actively listen and continue to tease it out.
Bob: Before Quinn comes in, hold that second, I have to give you this quick, there’s a clip on YouTube which I use in my training. And it’s this guy, and it’s obviously training one for a phone store, and they think this guy is the bomb. So he’s got how to build reports, he went through and he knows he’s supposed to ask this question. So we asked this question of this guy they’re role-playing with, right? And he’s like, “Oh, what a nice watch.” And the guy’s like, “Oh, this one?” And he’s like, “Yes, I got it with this, and this, and this. The guy’s like, “So what brought you in?” And I was like, “Holy crap.” That’s what you’re teaching? So now Quinn can talk. But that’s kind of like something to get through. I don’t really want to, I’m not curious about you, I’d rather get back to my girlfriend, boyfriend phone, who’s really my girlfriend, boyfriend anyway, and you’re just a distraction from me getting to that instead of just being curious, the party’s in the aisle, wouldn’t you agree, Quinn?
Quinn: I do agree. And I think if you’re focusing on that human, then there’s an appreciation for that. It’s like anything, the best way to build trust is to listen. I disagree with Kinsley, I think most things go wrong not at the beginning, most things go wrong when you wear a vest because there’s no reason to wear a vest, you need to spend the extra money and just buy the freaking sleeves for it. It’s a dumb piece of clothing. I just want to get that out there.
Bob: Just everyone knows, Kinsley has a vest on.
Kinsley: Just so you know, Bob, you should never mess with a guy in a vest, because the odds are good, it was a coat, and you just ripped the sleeves right off. So who are you dealing with here?
Quinn: Anyway. We can...
Bob: But Quinn you’re right, though. I mean, Kinsley, are you a successful guy at what you’re doing with your beds? Would you like kind of cut back 30% so you cut the sleeves off.
Quinn: Pay for the freaking sleeves, Kinsley.
Bob: Couldn’t pay for the color on it, at least.
Quinn: So, it’s an ongoing joke with Kinsley. So it’s a trust issue, but I would argue that it even starts before they ever get into the store. So the trust thing, so 80%, 85%, don’t know the number, 100%. That they’re starting online. And I think there’s a big miss for a lot of people because their online presence doesn’t look good. And people need to...Like, you don’t walk out of your house with pants that are too short, and in holes in your shirt. You really got to look buttoned up. So the about us section, a great measurement there. So, is it a cut-and-paste job? We sell great quality products and source them? Like, that’s crap, right?
So if you can connect them to who you are, your business, family, generational, like really give them something to sink their teeth into and start building that trust before they ever get into your store. I think that’s a big part of it. And people need to be thinking about how can you connect on an emotional level with your website. But not just your website, what are you saying in your social media? Are you pounding people with product, price, and promotion? Or, again, are you serving them with information that’s relevant to their life? So sleep tips, things like that. Build the bridge, and then when it’s time, land the punch, and you get them into the store, there’s already some affection for you.
Bob: Yes, I think that’s what I’ve built my brand on, is that I’m not for everybody, because I’m going to say it’s probably your fault you’re not successful. Who wants to hear that? I’d rather give a check of $10,000 to somebody, go write my copy. Okay, we’re done. But when you’re not authentic and you really don’t know, and you haven’t answered those questions, then your website does look bland and boring, or worse, you lead off that top third, we’re a family business. We’re just trying to get along, we’d appreciate you show us. Like, oh my god, if you just understood the only reason I’m here is because I have a problem, I’m looking for hope from you. So it’s an easy fix. Maybe you can only afford a $300 bed. Okay, well here’s three things to look at when you look at a $300 bed. It’s probably for a kid, it’s temporary, whatever, here’s some option you might have thought of. Oh, I’ll get it from Goodwill. I’ll do this, this. Well here’s reason you might not want to do it, but the point is like you say, is to understand why are they there in the beginning? So I will continue in just a minute, but first a word from this season’s sponsor CoreLogic.
All right, so how did you two get started? We’re back with “Dos Marcos,” which honestly I thought was a Mexican restaurant because I’m from California, and these two wonderful entrepreneurs Mark Quinn and Mark Kinsley. So how did you guys get going on doing the podcast together? Too much espresso, Red Bull, what?
Kinsley: It was a podcast about the mattress industry, and we started at Leggett & Platt which is about a $5 billion company. And Quinn and I were there. He had attracted me over from the agency where I worked. I had a radio background. And I said, “We should do a podcast about the mattress business.” And he laughed at me, and I said, “Look, podcasting is the medium of the modern age. You can listen to a podcast when you clean your house or take a jog.” I go, “It creates a real connection with people, they get to know you, you get to know them.” And Quinn, what was your reaction whenever I mentioned this?
Quinn: “Who’s going to listen to a podcast about the mattress category?” I mean, come on. I was already a writing blog and I’m like, “This is not going to...”
Bob: But it’s a crowded field you’re in. I mean, there’s so many already. How do you stand out?
Quinn: We were the galaxy’s greatest and only mattress podcast. That’s how we kind of joke around, we don’t take it too seriously. And so literally, at the time when we started, we were the only ones in it, and now they’re like four, and we produce all of their shows.
Kinsley: We created our own competition. But really, we were, you know, being in radio and having done daily talk shows for four years, I’m like, “We can creatively connect all kinds of topics to the mattress category.” There’s retail, manufacturing, supply chain, on and on it goes. And if we make it fun, then it’s much more palatable, you know? And even looking back at some of the old studies in media that I came across, people who watched new shows that were comedian-based new shows like Jimmy Fallon and others, retained about 20% more or knew 20% more about the news.
So I’m like, if we can just have fun with it, and get people connected to this, then it’s kind of the side door into promoting our mission of making sure that we’re selling better sleep. And we’re elevating this category, we’re attracting top talent. And we’re making it the industry that we want to be a part of. Instead of, you know, having people jump ship and go to a cool hip industry, let’s make this the one that’s cool and hip, and one that people can have meaningful careers in. And so 285 episodes later, and a full media property at fam.news, we feel like we’re on to something.
Bob: What was that URL again, Kinsley?
Kinsley: Fam.news. Fam stands for For All Things Mattress, and we just shifted to Furniture and Mattress. So it’s an acronym.
Quinn: And I would just add to that, Kinsley and I work together, but we had a great friendship and affection for each other, and I love that guy. And we have so much fun doing what we do together. And the intention behind it is the same. We want to serve our audience, we want to help retailers grow, we want them to be the best version of themselves and accelerate through the COVID time, and not just survive, but thrive inside the category, and preach to the category, “Hey guys, we have something really special here.” So let’s be that. Let’s grab that ring. And we’re on a consumers list, I mean, there’s a finite amount of money for most of us out there. And so are we at the top of the list of what they’re going to spend their money on or at the bottom? Let’s get to the top, and we do that only by talking about the products and the benefits of what we do in the right way.
Bob: Nice. So how’s the way you thought about retail changed in the past few years?
Kinsley: For me, Bob, it’s definitely around this idea of taking the online-offline and vice versa. So, you know, during the pandemic shutdowns, I saw a lot of people get into virtual commerce, but essentially it was like doing a FaceTime with somebody in a store. And we had a guy named Adam Levine, not the Maroon 5 singer, but a guy that had this app called Hero App. And I thought it was very interesting because I came across a website, and all of a sudden, this guy popped up, and it was like an Instagram feed. And he was talking about the product, the product shows up in the top right, I click on it, I can go buy it. But then you could swipe through and go to the next product, it was an actual human being talking to you about these products, and personalizing the experience. And I really was just taken by it, it was very well thought out, it was intuitive. But then on top of that, you could schedule a virtual appointment with somebody and speak with them and not have to... So it really brought personalization to the e-commerce experience.
And then conversely, we talked to a lot of our dealers, so people that sell Englander products or Spink & Co products. And I remember talking to this awesome retailer called Sweet Dreams Mattress and Furniture in North Carolina. And I said, during the pandemic shutdowns, I’m like, “Hey, is there one thing that you’re doing to stay alive? Is there something you’ve noticed that’s changed?” And Andrew Mattman, like mattress superhero, Andrew Mattman Schlesser said, “Podium.” And what they were doing was people would come into a store, and then they would maybe not be able to make a decision right then and there, and so they would leave. And as we know, the be-back bus travels in one direction, and it’s not to your store. So they would leave and they would provide them with the product details, a PDF with links, and somebody could complete that transaction from home, schedule delivery, and not ever have to come back to the store. And I’m like, that level of swirling omnichannel convenience is going to become mandatory. And I feel like we fast-tracked our technological abilities. Whereas, think about 2019, if I was like, “Let’s hop on a Zoom,” nobody would want to do it. But we fast-tracked that.
Bob: No one wants to do it in 2022 either, but keep going, yes.
Kinsley: So we just shifted that experience, and we were able to actually crystallize some of our thinking around that omnichannel approach, and dealers that are doing that are having continued success from what I can see.
Bob: Yes, no, I agree. And Podium has the ability then to immediately get them to review you and add up your reviews. Although one woman I talked about who uses Podium, she had an inordinate amount of reviews. And I said, “How come you do it so much?” And she goes, “Oh, we have grandma.” I was like, “Oh, is that a new app?” She’s like, “No, no, no, our grandmother started the business, and so she’ll call people two weeks after, and make sure that they did the review that we sent them.” I was like, “Okay, so grandma’s the key. Grandmas the key.”
Quinn: I like that. I think also it’s the digital space that kind of, to what Kinsley said, I think it adds a whole another dimension. I think it’s competing with the digital space. So it’s not just your ability to get into it, but it’s competing with it. And I think branding is a unique opportunity right now because more than ever you have access or the ability to omnichannel that part of it. And I think people who really value their brand, and who they are, and how they’re connected to people, I think that is more important than ever. And finally, Kinsley and I talk about this a lot, you don’t have to change because survival isn’t mandatory. So change is not required because you don’t have to survive it, right?
But the people who are not shifting gears and changing, the people who are able to do that and kind of navigate the complexity of the market today, those are the people that are going to survive, and it’s the creative mind in our opinion that is going to really allow them to transcend where they are now and become more than a place to just transact business. It has to be about something else. It has to be about an experience. It has to be about a human connection. It has to be about the follow-up. And that trust factor. Those people who really get that and there’s evidence of it, those are the people who are going to survive and thrive going forward.
Bob: Yes, it reminds me of “Calvin and Hobbs,” finished many years ago, a cartoon, and the last one was Calvin says to Hobbs, “It snowed last night.” And we see it’s all wide open. And he says so many possibilities. Let’s go. Well, that’s what we have to be thinking about with retail. And that’s, we’re getting close to the end of our time, I think it’s the same idea with any retailer, you have never had more tools that were cheaper and more focused than ever to do a better job, shame on you, you don’t want to take advantage of them. Shame on you you’re stuck in price and promotion. Shame on you you think that Amazon’s your competition. You’re your competition because I love that what you said earlier, Kinsley, the road to be-back never goes to your store. Could you say it one more time for me so I get it perfectly?
Kinsley: The be-back bus travels in one direction and it’s not to your store.
Bob: That’s going to be the way we start this episode, just so you know. So, gentlemen, it’s been great to talk to you, and not about your Mexican food outlet, that you’re going to be starting a food truck soon. But your podcast “Dos Marcos” and your book “Come Back to Bed.” So tell me something good about retail. I’m going to say Quinn first because I want to make sure you have the sleeves, you have the mic.
Quinn: Something good about retail. It’s a really cool way to serve people. You know, you’re the front line. I want everyone out there, “Retail Pride” is a great book. So are you familiar with it, Bob?
Bob: Sure, we had Ron on our show a couple...
Kinsley: Yeah Ron Thurston.
Quinn: Such a great guy. So he really made me think about that. So be really proud of the business you’re in. And know this, that you’re the engine, and so the manufacturers, the component suppliers, anyone in the supply chain, it doesn’t really happen until you make it happen. And so stay connected guys like Bob, big fan of his. I’ve already said I’m going to name my next kid if I have one after you, Bob. And I’m going to make sure that he has his own podcast show similar to yours when he grows up. But no, I mean, stay dialed into stuff like this. There you go. Stay dialed into places like this where you can get fed positive information, and be around people that inspire you because what you’re doing is big, and it’s important, and we’re grateful to every one of you because you guys do some really hard work, work some really long hours. So, blessings to all you listening to this. And, well done. We’re grateful for all of you.
Bob: Nice Quinn, and Kinsley?
Kinsley: I mentioned one of my favorite retailers, Sweet Dreams Mattress and Furniture in North Carolina. And tell you something good about retail, this team, but in particular this guy, Mattman. So he dresses up as a superhero. He’s in a mattress costume. He’s got a cape on. He has pink sunglasses. And he became the Chamber of Commerce Person of the Year for his service to the community. He goes out and runs 5K’s, and it’s great promotion for their business, but he also serves on boards and charities, and he just does all this different work, but even in the store. You want to talk about a transition that is completely disrupted, somebody thinks they’re going to walk in and see a salesperson with pleated khakis that are way too long. You walk in and you see somebody dressed up as a sleep superhero, you can’t help but smile. And if you’ve made people smile, and you’re having fun, you’ve already won.
And so Mattman makes the conversation about sleep. And the sleep superhero is going after the caffeine chameleon and is going after all of those evil villains that snatch away your sleep. And he’s made this whole character about it. And he has fun with kids, he has fun with adults, he’s serving his community, and he’s changed the narrative fundamentally within his own environment, and with his entire community, and even within our industry. So I want you to just sit back and think, what are we actually trying to do, and are we brave enough? Are we going to be bold this year? Because a lot of times we’ll say, “No, I’m not willing to do it. I will just continue to be scared until I wither away.” So, what’s good about retail? Your creativity, your ability and willingness to execute on that, your willingness to bring together a team. If you say you’re not creative, it’s not an excuse, you have people around you that are bringing them together, and be bold this year, and you’re going to be the superhero of your own retail business.
Bob: Oh, that’s so good, but I have to add on to it. It’s not about the suit. That’s what you need to take from that, is that you don’t have to wear a suit, because like I already hear somebody’s like, “Well, I can’t, I don’t look that good in spandex.” Yes, none of us look good in spandex, all right? So that’s not the point. It’s the...
Kinsley: Did Quinn just say speak for yourself?
Quinn: No, I don’t look good... No.
Bob: I see you in a vest, and I know the spandex couldn’t make it better. So, there’s so many of us don’t realize that it’s that confidence in knowing who you are and saying I’m going to have fun with this today. How many possibilities are out there? And I appreciate you guys joining us talking about retail possibilities. Make sure you click the links below. Make sure you listen to “Dos Marcos,” and make sure you get their book “Come Back to Bed,” because, again, there are so few of us out there saying about what the possibilities are in a relentless news media environment, which is, there’s something else to be afraid of. Remember that there’s an awful lot of options we’ve got out there to enjoy our lives and have fun with it. And I appreciate you guys with us today on “Tell Me Something Good About Retail.” Thanks, guys.
Quinn: Thanks, Bob.
Kinsley: Great being here. Thanks, Bob.
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