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DOMAIN AND REFLEX FORM UNIQUE STRATEGIC ALLIANCE.

Judy George knows that to be successful selling upholstered furniture, the ability to overcome customers' fear is paramount.

In her quest to make her customers comfortable with their purchases, the chief executive of specialty retail chain Domain Home Fashions, has teamed with Reflex Polymer Cushioning (a registered trademark of Foamex Corp.), in a first-ever strategic alliance between a retailer and a source.

Through the alliance, Domain will offer Reflex Polymer Cushioning products in all of its upholstered furniture.

"At Domain, we know that quality goes far beyond surface appearance," George says. "We have always focused on bringing our customers beautiful, quality furniture. Now, through our alliance with Reflex, we are offering our customers the combination of Domain's classic lines and timeless styles with the unique inner strength of Reflex Polymer Cushioning.

"Facing the millennium as a retailer, there's no way I can build Domain without key alliances," George relates. "I need to better position Domain for growth, and I need to separate myself from the competitive arena by presenting to the consumer more compelling reasons to buy furniture. Consumers have no trust in the industry; they have such furniture frustration. I want Reflex to do the same thing that Scotchgard did; tell them a story that affords a comfort level that the product will last and overcome her fear."

As part of the aggressive marketing effort, Reflex has launched a fall advertising campaign featuring eye-catching color print ads. The ads, running in the Boston Globe, The New York Times and the Washington Post, tout Domain's home fashions and explain the benefit story of Reflex's state-of-the-art polyurethane cushioning products, which combine the comfort of down with the resiliency of today's technology.

"We have initiated this campaign because we want to raise consumer awareness," says Fred Natrin, marketing manager for Reflex Polymer Cushioning. "This product is a totally new kind of cushioning that doesn't sag, droop or go flat and far surpasses the cushioning that is currently available to the industry."

For Natrin, a veteran of Dupont, the idea of "going downstream" beyond the manufacturer to encourage the retailer to spec in the cushion materials, was a natural move, albeit an unusual one for the furniture industry. And, it's paying off. "We are encouraging all of our manufacturers to use Reflex Polymer Cushioning," George says.

As an added benefit, the alliance is also expected to alleviate customer service problems for Domain. "For years, the biggest problem facing the industry has been the cushioning in upholstery," George says. Indeed, she reports, in cases where Domain has taken product back, 75 percent of the time the cause has been cushion-related. "I've always given my customer a psychological warranty that no matter what, they could come back to Domain. We've replaced cushions that were sold as much as 12 years ago." For that reason, she says, "Reflex is a good value story. Together, Domain and Reflex are offering consumers an unprecedented combination of luxurious home fashions with comfortable and long-lasting cushioning. Reflex will guarantee all Domain Home Fashions customers' satisfaction."
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Article Details
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Author:Wray, Kimberley
Publication:HFN The Weekly Newspaper for the Home Furnishing Network
Geographic Code:1USA
Date:Nov 16, 1998
Words:505
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