Got back pain?

Monday, June 30, 2008

NEW ORLEANS--When provider Jeff Friedman added Tempur-Pedic mattresses to his product mix recently, he wanted to boost his cash sales. After buying a mattress for himself, however, he became more than just a shrewd businessman.

“I’m a zealot for these mattresses,” said Friedman, owner of Total Health Solutions.

Total Health carries five models of Tempur-Pedic mattresses in an area of its showroom called “The Sleep and Wellness Center.” It also cross-markets the mattresses, which sell for about $3,000 depending on size, in other areas of the showroom. The provider has already sold eight Tempur-Pedic mattresses in a handful of months.

“A customer yesterday bought a mattress for her 84-year-old mother who just had spinal fusion surgery,” Friedman said. “She didn’t want her to go through rehab and then sleep on a mattress where her spine would be out of alignment.”

Despite his excitement, Friedman knows better than to compete against traditional mattress stores.

“Competition is stiff,” he said. “But if someone comes into the store for a cold pack for back pain or even for acid reflux, I’ll talk to them about what the right mattress can do for them.”