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We recently had the “pleasure” of going mattress shopping. For the last few years we’ve said that when it became time to get a new bed our top choice would be the Westin Heavenly Bed because every time we stayed at a Westin we just loved the bed.

However, we felt we needed to do some comparison-shopping so we started by heading off to Sleep Country USA, the major mattress chain in Seattle. Bad mouthing the competition may work with some people but not us. We mentioned how much we like the Westin bed and got a diatribe about how it’s not that great a mattress and here’s a better one. We mentioned the Sleep Number bed and heard what’s wrong with it  and how the (similar) one they sell is so much better. And so it went. We walked out saying that we’ll get our bed somewhere else, no matter what model we finally choose.

Our next visit was to Macy’s where the approach the salesperson took was completely different. She explained different mattress features, pros and cons of different types, why their best selling model is their bestseller, etc. We finished at Nordstrom’s, as they’re the only store that carries the Westin bed. Again, the salesperson was informative and helpful.

A mattress is a big decision. Even though the financial outlay is much less than a car, it’s just as important as we spend a lot more time on a mattress than in our car.

Bottom line: we all have competition. If we didn’t we wouldn’t have a business. Want to be the only business selling floppy disks (soon to include CDs)? Good, healthy and honest competition keeps us productive. We get customers and clients by demonstrating the value we provide, which is more than just features of our product or service. We don’t get customers by telling them that the product they like, from personal experience, isn’t that good.

“Right now, the most avant-garde thing you can do is to be sincere.” (Actor) Steve Coogan

P.S. We ended up with the Westin bed based on experience, reinforcement of said experience at Nordstrom’s and the fact that it was on sale for about 30% off, making it half the price of our next favorite.

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