When I was a kid and wanted to break up with a girl, my parents would NOT let me do that over the phone. If I was going to deliver bad news I had to muster the courage to do it face to face which I hated, but I get it now. Today, my kids and their friends ask each other out via Snapchat and break up the same way, no problem. I started to insist on a face to face like the olden days but was quickly rebuked; “that’s NOT HOW YOU DO IT TODAY DAD!!!!!!” Got it.
I bring this up because I have been hearing that bedding brands have been sending out bad news via snail mail. Raising prices, taking away co-op etc. You can’t do everything in person I realize because logistics make that tough, but how about a phone call? It stinks to have to be on a call or worse, in the room with someone as you give them bad news because nobody likes an ass chewing, but isn’t that also an opportunity to address the problem? If you were going to give your customer an increase of 5% in their co-op advertising fund, would you do that with a letter?
To my manufacturing friends out there, all I’m saying is that if you choose to take an “arms length” approach to your business, your retailers are going to do the same so get ready for that. How would you like to get an email with the subject line, “So Sorry” which goes on to say that you have been thrown off the floor?
THIS JUST IN
As I was writing this blog post I received a phone call that the anticipated cuts at SSB have happened and there are a lot of people out of a job today, some of them good friends of mine. For all of you that now find yourself in the job market, I will say what I always say. This is your path so take a beat, and then start looking for the meaning in it all. Dip down into the relationships that you have invested in over the years and something will come your way; companies are always looking for great people. You may start to doubt yourself or feel some self-pity which is normal, but crush that crap and charge forward, there is something even better waiting for you if you believe it to be true.
More on the current state of Serta/Simmons bedding in next weeks blog. Send me your thoughts, please.
Don’t miss this week’s Dos Marcos podcast about my trip to the big Brand Source Better Together Summit in Nashville, TN. Some great commentary from Jason Dorsey on generational marketing and my HUGE fail with a live band at BB Kings Blues Bar.