Simmons second century
A story of markets
Why, sometimes it even backwatered! A final example: our experience in the electric blanket business. We made enough mistakes there to lose several million dollars, but we probably gained more than that in lessons learned. In retrospect, our failures seem funny now only because we have had far more successes. In the long range, our marketing philosophy has worked magnificently. The core of that philosophy was expressed years ago in an advertisement signed by The Chief. "I want partners ... not just dealers," ran the headline. It is still true and it is going to remain true in the years ahead. The leading furniture and department stores really are our partners in the chain of selling. We do not have the capacity or the ambition to take over the retailing of our products. That is the retail merchant's function and he is an expert at it. Our retailing job is simply to help the merchant move more Simmons products through his store. To that end, we have built up a great reservoir of merchandising know-how. We are constantly searching for new retailing insights to benefit our customers. Over the years Simmons has developed a number of very special marketing advantages for the retailer. We give him service. Our plants are strategically located to serve major markets, and our "Simmons Service Station" warehouses stock bedding products in sixty-six other cities. No other manufacturer provides him with that kind of service. An early goof! We give him profits. Our sales policies have always been founded on the conviction that the retailer is entitled to a very good profit on our products. Most importantly, we fair trade Beautyrest mattresses wherever it is legal. This firm price has served as the very "ridge pole" of mattress department profits, and a key to home furnishings retailing in general. The Chief's marketing philosophy, "I want partners.., not just dealers," still holds. We give him visual merchandising aid. Most bedding departments today give little indication, by their position, size or appearance, of their importance to the merchant. Simmons is working to change this. Our Second Century Visual Merchandising Programs are designed to feminize the bedding department-to make it as glamourous and inviting as a lady's own boudoir-and to highlight the Beautyrest Line-the top profit producer. We give him reliable products. Our products are uniform and consistent, coast to coast. No other manufacturer, bar none, delivers uniform quality over any sizable geographic area. Beauty rests on Beautyrest.
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