25 May 2024, 12:53
By Simon Williams Feb 28, 2023

Wake up to National Bed Month this March

For more than three decades, the National Bed Month campaign has encouraged the replacement of old beds with new – and although growing environmental concerns prompt us to look at the process from fresh angles, the message very much remains the same this March, writes the National Bed Federation’s Simon Williams …

I guess it’s a sign of how long I’ve been working in the bed industry that I can recall the very first National Bed Month, way back in 1990. Working as a young marketing manager for the Dunlopillo brand at the time, I can recall how the whole of the UK bed industry really got behind the campaign – manufacturers, suppliers, and particularly the retailers, both large and small. 

In those pre-digital days, PoS material was either mailed out to retailers by the NBF or delivered by hand by the area sales managers and agents. Retailers were more than happy to use the material to create eye-catching displays, and it was backed up by a national PR campaign which achieved plenty of newsprint and radio coverage, plus a smattering of TV. 

Bed manufacturers were encouraged to launch special ‘Bed Month’ products, or offer value-added deals such as free drawers, or a king-size for the price of a double. Retailers’ press advertising was all about National Bed Month, with the underlying message of the importance of replacing your old bed with a new one.     

As an awareness campaign, National Bed Month was the envy of the other sectors of the UK furniture industry (upholstery, cabinet, flooring) – but, although it probably still is, it doesn’t carry the gravitas that it once did. The constant promotions and ‘half-price sales’ have put pay to that. However, it has certainly achieved a key goal set back then – to reduce the average mattress replacement cycle from 17 years. It’s now down to around seven years, and most people are aware of the importance that a good, supportive mattress plays in their overall health and wellbeing.    

This year’s theme for National Bed Month in March is ‘Wake Up on the Right Side, with the Right Bed’ (#RightSideOfTheBed).

Although in its 34th year, the core message remains pretty much the same – to raise awareness of the crucial role a good bed plays in achieving healthy, restorative sleep, helping us to wake up on the right side of the bed in the morning. Just as exercising and eating well are fundamental ingredients of a healthy lifestyle, so is the bed and sleeping environment, which is why we encourage consumers to care for their mattress and replace it when it is no longer comfortable or supportive.

In line with our NBF Green initiative, guiding consumers on how to properly care for their beds throughout the years of use to prolong their lifespan is also a key message for National Bed Month. In a world where we are beginning to examine every area of our lives when it comes to sustainability – asking ourselves if we could get a few more uses out of an item, if it could be recycled, or if there’s an eco-friendlier version – we should not forget about beds!

Nowadays, greener choices are available at every stage of a bed’s lifecycle – from opting for a mattress that uses recycled materials or sustainably and ethically sourced raw materials, to ensuring the mattress can be easily deconstructed and recycled at the end of its useful life.

Our free multimedia marketing toolkit is perfect for pushing these messages during March. The toolkit includes guidance on buying beds and caring for them, and sleep advice from our partner, The Sleep Charity. Why not use our pack to promote your business via your website and social media, or include it in a mailshot to your customer database?

Included in the toolkit are: logo in multiple formats; social media infographics and graphics; social media banners; social media copy; printable posters; campaign video; and a guidance document.

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