It’s 2020 and, while the world is crashing on many fronts, a large number of furniture and mattress businesses are booming. But as we head into 2021, the Moody index projects a bleak Q1 and Q2, with a hearty economic comeback for the back half of the year. 

While the furniture and mattress industry has feasted over these past few months (when other industries are suffering and closing their doors), how well positioned is your business to endure a famine? Our industry is currently seeing the fruits of a well-plowed season, but winter is coming. Are you enjoying the moment and expecting the same results, or stocking up and preparing?


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2020: Being THankful For Things Unseen & Unheard

2020. The numbers alone are a complete sentence for most. When someone sees or hears the words “twenty-twenty” emotions and meanings run high. From toilet paper shortages, to political upheaval to the infamous virus that runs unchecked—2020 will forever be the year that all bets were off. The unlikely happened. The impossible seemed to occur.  And yet, in the middle of it, we find ourselves entering the season of thanks and we pause to consider, “Is there something to be thankful for?” In a year where many of have lost loved ones, many are without jobs, many without the ability to see family, and most without any sense of normal, it seems we have to dig deep to find things to be thankful for. 

There’s an ancient parable on leadership where a ruler tells a young prince to go into a forrest and to return and tell the leader what he has heard. The young prince does so and returns with a report of what you may expect: birds chirping and bees buzzing. Yet, the ruler instructs the prince to return to the forest and listen again. After a few days, the prince returns to report that he was able to hear the unheard. He reported hearing the sun warming the earth and the grass drinking the morning dew. To this the ruler replied, 

To hear the unheard, is a necessary discipline to be a good ruler. For only when a ruler has learned to listen closely to the people’s hearts, hearing their feelings uncommunicated, pains unexpressed, and complaints not spoken of, can he hope to inspire confidence in his people, understand when something is wrong, and meet the true needs of his citizens.”

Applying this parable to 2020, while the obtrusiveness of the year seems to scream much louder and list the parade of horribles, if we pause to sit and listen, we can certainly find the land of plenty.  It may require concentration, but it’s there. For us, it’s having a good friend to catch up with week after week both on a podcast and in real life. It’s our families, our friends and as cliche as it sounds, you, the listener. 

Whether you’re a colleague in the industry or someone who listens for the pure humor that two guys named Mark provide, we’re thankful you choose us. 2020 has taken a lot, but its given a lot, too. This year, we’re taking the wisdom of the parable and finding thankfulness in the uncommon.

Happy Thanksgiving!

Mark & Mark 


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A Better Death for Mattresses

Stacked up, the number of mattresses discarded each day in the USA would surpass Mount Everest by an additional four miles into the sky. That is tons of waste that ends up in landfills and could have been recycled into items like carpet padding, mulch, and steel. 

How do we do a better job of bidding farewell to a mattress in its final days? Recycling. Even though that sounds simple, only three states have enacted official programs—California, Rhode Island, and Connecticut. 

The process to recycle a mattress goes beyond sitting the old bed on a curb on trash day. There are fees and protocols and legislation that governs the proper disposal of a mattress. Fortunately, this is where the Mattress Recycling Council steps in. 

This week we chatted with the Director of Operations, Justine Fallon, to learn how the MRC is working with manufacturers, retailers, and the individual states to develop and maintain healthy mattress recycling programs. It’s an issue that impacts everyone in our industry and will only become more top-of-mind as the push for a better planet moves forward.


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Your Name Is On The List: When 6 Words Change Your Life

After 25 years as a Human Resources Executive, Dale Kreienkamp heard the words no employee wants to hear, “Your name is on the list.” Those six words signaled his involuntary departure from a company he had spent the better part of his career investing in, and to his new status of unemployed. 

Undeterred, Dale went through the normal stages of unemployment grief (which, as he tells us, is a real thing people don’t talk about), but then regrouped and in doing so wrote a book entitled, “How Long, Oh Lord, How Long.” The book is a compilation of devotions for those who find themselves unemployed, those in the land of unemployment and unsure when it will end, those who want to support unemployed family and friends, and for leaders looking to get better.

As we chatted with Dale, one consistent theme emerged: your outlook will shape how you face hard times. Although no one ever wants to go through difficult life transitions, they are inevitable. How you proceed is half the battle. Now, as a consultant assisting in corporate reorganizations, Dale says more often than not he interacts with individuals who affirmatively state that being let go from their job was the best thing that ever happened to them. “You get comfortable,” he says, referring to those who make a decision to stay at a job and and then are forced out. “It’s usually long overdue.” 

Listen or watch this week’s episode to understand how even in 2019—potentially the best economy ever—21.9 million Americans still lost jobs. And find out how to march through unemployment, support a friend facing job displacement, or be a better leader when you’re having to let people go. 


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Mark Quinn said it best, “We don’t want retailers to survive. We want them to thrive.”  In this week’s episode, we reveal the name of our new book, 

“Come Back to Bed: Attract More Foot Traffic And Make People Fall In Love With Your Store. “

As your Sleep Industry Guides, Dos Marcos has traveled the mattress universe looking for tried-and-true foot traffic drivers. Over the years we’ve gathered dozens of ideas that have been implemented by real retailers. But the book is more than a list of ways to attract foot traffic; Dos Marcos will show you how to build a brand people love, connect with people in a meaningful way, and truly differentiate your business from the competition. 

Here’s a taste of what’s inside the book, a snippet from Chapter 3 that touches on why mattress and furniture stores have to change and adapt to be here tomorrow. 

“We live in an attention economy. If you capture people’s attention, you can get paid. Fail to make people look and listen and business will suffer. Offer the same products sold at a dirty window store down the road and you’ll be commoditized. Avoid building value in your products and no one will care what you’re selling. Promote only price and item and someone will beat your price.”

You need to differentiate….

{…}To generate foot traffic and sales you have to give people a compelling reason to put on pants and stop shopping at Amazon.com.

You have to decide to do it differently.

{…}A shift takes place when you decide to do it differently. Suddenly you go from playing basketball against giants to running sprints against sloths. No one can keep up. They don’t understand what you’re doing or why you’re doing it. They scoff and criticize. They sneer and talk trash. And then one day you’ll see those trash talkers trying to play your game. At first you’ll be upset. Don’t worry. It won’t take long before your competitor realizes they’re the sloth and you’re the track star. If someone else plays your game, you’ll be better at it. A key piece of your game will be dedicated to something fun, meaningful, and magical—connecting with people. That’s where we’re heading next.”

We describe in detail over 70 tested methods for driving foot traffic. We incorporate the wisdom of heavy hitters in the industry such as Jim “Mattress Mack” McInvgale, Harry Roberts, Steve Rusing and many more. We lament over some of our own personal failures, and we did all this so that you could walk away with a one-stop-shop book designed to take your business from ordinary to extraordinary.


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Beating The Odds: From Bartender to Businessman to Beating ALS

During his childhood, Wes Roberts lived in a hotel in Devil’s Lake, North Dakota. Early on, Wes’ dad taught him and and his legendary cousin, Mattress Firm co-founder Harry Roberts, the rules of the schoolyard—keep out of trouble, but know how to throw the first punch. 

After learning the ins-and-outs of the hotel business, Wes began bartending and, eventually, opened up a bar  he operated for thirteen years and hosted up-and-coming names in the music industry. The bar business wasn’t a permanent plan because he’d made a promise to his mom that he wouldn’t raise a family in a bar. So, when Wes met his wife  after a car accident that dislocated and broke several bones, he sold the business and began selling furniture for Jack Smith at American Bed in Houston. 

With a love of people and talent for communication, it wasn’t surprising he met an Edward Jones agent who encouraged him to try his hand at financial planning. From there, he opened up the first Edward Jones branch in Alaska and eventually went on to win the top earner award for the entire company. 

Successful businessman doesn’t paint the full picture of Wes Roberts. He’s a tough hockey player who also loves singing and playing guitar. Wes has completed 10 marathons, got his first tattoo at 64, and, after being diagnosed with ALS, changed some of his passwords to “F U A.L.S” as a reminder on how to start each day. Listen to this heartwarming story as Wes reminds us that no matter the circumstances life gives you, your outlook is what matters most. YAMBAILY!

Want to watch the interview? Check it Out Here!


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Ergomotion’s Adjustable Bed Research Reveals What 1/3 of Consumers Want

Our guest today is Gui Peres. Born in Brazil, Gui came to the United States at age sixteen as a foreign exchange student. He loved the USA and eventually made his way here full-time, landed a job at a startup called Ergomotion, and now he’s their Global Sales Director. And he happens to live a few miles from Oprah and Prince Harry. 

In this week’s episode, Peres tells us how Ergomotion is using research and insights to create the bed of the future and help their dealers make more money. 

If you’re in the mattress business, you may remember the early days of adjustable bases when consumers associated them with hospital beds. When Ergomotion began training their retailers on how to market and sell motion bases the narrative shifted away from the “old hospital bed” toward adjustables being a lifestyle product.  

Now, the Ergomotion team is working on technology that tracks and monitors each person’s biometric make-up to help them sleep better and live better. 

If you’re looking for more insights, sign up for Ergomotion’s free virtual expo October 22, 2020—their research reveals the latest consumer trends around sleep and how you can use those ideas to offer your customers more (and increase your revenue).


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dos marco fantasy football: update

by Mike Whitaker, Nationwide Marketing Group

A quarter of the season is in the book, gentlemen, and there’s excitement, triumph and wretched disappointment are all around.

Before we dive into the commentary, let’s talk winners and losers.  When we talk winners, there can only be one.  One league that is simply dominating the other.  One league, where even though the host himself is in dead, defeated, pitiful, rock-bottom last, everyone is a winner.  That league, ladies and gentlemen, is Dos Quinn. 

To date, the Doe Quinners have scored a total of 5,659.4 fantasy points.  The Dos Kinsleys are losers.  Let that be stated.  Not big losers, but still losers.  Close doesn’t count here.  It’s not horseshoes, and it isn’t hand grenades.  (Not that they could score more points armed with both.)  However, they’re weighing in at the quarter pole with 5,572.25 points.  It’s not a respectable second place.  There is no respect for second place.  Especially since second place around here is also last place.  It is written, and I have spoken.

Now, let’s celebrate the individual winners and shame those who can’t seem to get it together. 

In all of the Dos Marcos universe, there is but three undefeated teams at this point in the season.  They are Brandon (I like to party), (KT Limpers) and Greg (Hokie Pride).  These folks are just ON.  Dominating.  Steamrolling.  Amazing.  They are to be admired, respected, and showered with adulation.  And (hopefully) beaten to a pulp soon.  By somebody.  Probably not either Mark, but that’s another story, and we’ll wait for the shame discussion for that.

Our top point getter in the Dos Kinsley league so far is  and KT Limpers with 625.8.  Dos Quinn’s top scoring team is Brandon, and he really likes to party.  I know because he announced it on the PA system at PrimeTime.  And then he named his team the same.

Let’s talk losers, shall we?  Surprisingly, we have to start with Trent Bedding.  I want to clearly state here, and for the record, this team is managed by Lil’ Trent.  There’s no way a Hilltopper like Trent Ramburger could get this far in the season and not have won a single game.  This is all Lil’ Trent.  He’s good on TV, he’s abysmal at fantasy football.  He knows a lot about mattresses, but barely enough to string along a full roster in fantasy.  We love him anyway.  He’s like a twisted, insane and yet loveable little version of Trent.  So he stays around, even if he never manages a win, and that’s looking really likely.

Now, we shift to the losers.  I mean the hosts of the Galaxy’s Greatest Mattress Podcast.  1-3.  Both of you.  One and three.  That’s one measly win, three humiliating, ugly losses.  And we’ll go a step further.  Kinsley, in some unexplainable twist of fate, has actually scored 524 points.  Not good enough to win more than one single, lone game, but middle of the pack in the Dos Marcos fantasy land. 

Then, there’s my boy Quinn.  For all his dashing good looks, articulate speech patterns, and ability to will Tiger Woods to the 2019 Masters crown with nothing more than an intense stare, an encouraging shout, and a perfectly timed fart that shifted the wind and rendered a birdie on Sunday’s #15, this guy just sucks at fantasy football.  I mean sucks like a black hole, off in outer space, just pulling in whatever floats by and crushing the living soul from it. 

Are you wondering who has the lowest four week point total across both leagues?  Chad Fischer?  Maybe Jeff Rose and Lady Glitter Sparkles?  Nope.  Mark Quinn and the Ankle Breakers.  I’m wondering if he realizes that ankle breaking is something you’re supposed to do to the other team?  Is it possible he literally broke his own fantasy ankles? 

Let’s ponder a few more appropriate team names, shall we?  Maybe the Arkansas Dustpans?  Perhaps the Justin Bieber Fan Club?  How about the Johnny Manziel’s?  Could they be the WalMart Wonders?  Just sayin’.  It’s gotten bad.  He’s scored a mere 452 points.  For reference, Lil Trent has scored 545.  Um, Quinn, you’ve been outscored by 100 points by a puppet that hasn’t won a game.  Shame.  Rancid Shame. 

So, let’s wrap up.  I need to wash my hands.  I’m afraid Quinn’s team rubbed off on them.  Much love, and until next time, would somebody get Lil Trent a cupcake?  Or at least let him play Quinn so he can notch a win?


It’s the continuation of last week’s episode, where we interviewed the founder of Austin’s Couch Potatoes, Brian Morgan.

If you haven’t heard part one of this two part series, go back and grab a tissue as you do. It’s an episode too good to skip. 

In this week’s episode, Brian starts off with explaining how he and his team had to pivot during the initial onset of Covid19. He discusses making over one million items of PPE (personal protective equipment) from fabric purchased for furniture construction and how he got a call from the Department of Homeland Security!

He also touches on a heart warming and equally gut wrenching story about two murderers who came to work for him and their story of redemption.  This episodes ends on the highest of notes and its one we can’t wait for you to hear. 

Quick heads-up from our friends at Ergomotion. Raise your expectations at the 2020 Ergomotion Virtual Expo. Join Ergomotion for this FREE event on October 22nd and learn how to earn more with the world’s most innovative adjustable base. Register today at Ergomotion.com/expo.


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The Couch Potato Preacher: Brian Morgan’s Magical Story

To get lunch, Brian Morgan used to order pizza during homeroom and sell it for $2 a slice to his classmates. In college, he sold plus-size lingerie on eBay and in 2010 he launched a church at Ground Zero in New York City.

The founder and owner of Austin’s Couch Potatoes is passionate about meeting the needs of people and building a business around those he brings into his ever-expanding family.

It’s rare to find a person whose story is so captivating that you have a hard time stopping the conversation, but we have it here. Brian’s journey coves so much ground we decided to break this episode into two parts.

In part one, we introduce you to Brian—who he is, his approach to business, and the early days at Austin’s Couch Potatoes. It started by reselling scratch-and-dent furniture from Macy’s on Craigslist before moving into their first brick-and-mortar location—an old bathtub manufacturing facility with no electricity or running water where Brian and his crew ended up living for three years.

Brian used a coffee shop’s WIFI to transact business, purchased a lifetime membership to a fitness facility to get a hot shower, and sold furniture out of their dark warehouse by giving customers headlamps so they could see it.

Although his journey covers a lot of ground, the heart of Brian’s message is clear: you can serve people in business by meeting their needs—and meeting them where they are.


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Hosted by Mark Kinsley and Mark Quinn.