Transcript of Video Titled “Massage Chair Industry Update – January 8, 2018”
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Alan: Hi, I’m Dr. Alan Weidner from ‘Massage-Chair-Relief.com’ and today is our biweekly massage chair industry update for Monday, January 8th, 2018. I hope you had a great New Year, a good holiday season, and I hope you’re looking forward to having a great 2018.
[SCREEN TEXT: New Massage Chair Models!]
Alan: There are a lot of new models that are coming out, or have come out recently, and I still don’t have them all up on my website.
[SCREEN TEXT: New Osaki Ekon Massage Chair]
Alan: Osaki’s come out with their new Ekon, which is a chair that’s a higher-priced 3D L-track chair. It looks very similar to the Infinity Imperial, and I don’t know much about it, but they’re quite excited about carrying that chair. It’s made in a very, very good factory in China, and I think it’s going to be – it looks like it’s going to be, it’s poised to be a competitive, good seller to the – a competitive top-seller to the Infinity Presidential and the Human Touch Novo. I believe the price point is going to be $7995. Now, there’s also the new Panasonic MAJ7 is coming out, and I believe, from the way the literature reads, even though it doesn’t come right out and say foot rollers, it does say foot-sole massage, and so we will know when we – I’m going to the Consumer Electronics Show this Thursday, in Las Vegas – to try out that chair. I suspect they’re going to have it there, but that is a new model from Panasonic. I believe, oh, I can’t remember what that one is going to be priced, I think it’s like in the 9s, something like that, but a new chair from Panasonic, and we haven’t had a new one from Panasonic in quite a while.
[SCREEN TEXT: What Size of Person Does a Chair Really Fit?]
Alan: The other chairs that we’ve got coming out, there’s the Jupiter XL from Titan, Osaki/Titan, which I need to get up on the website. It’s been out for a while. That one is supposed to be an ideal chair for a bigger body, an ideal L-track chair for a bigger body. It says it’ll fit up to 6′ 6″, but you know, I’ve come to doubt – well, not doubt – but my interpretation of what it means to fit someone up to 6′ 6″, or 6′ 4″, or 6′ 3″, or 6′ 2″ has been altered by the fact that yes, these chairs will fit someone the size they say it will fit, but it may not adjust, or massage the neck that of that person. And so, like a classic example would be, like the ZeroG 5.0 from Human Touch, a great little chair, I’ve had it in both of my showrooms. It looks like a regular recliner, it’s a nice, strong massage, it’s got 3D rollers, foot-and-calf massage, and they say that that chair fits people up to 6′ 2″. Well, I’m 5′ 9″, and it barely gets to the top of my neck. Now, it will fit someone that’s 6′ 2″, no doubt about it, but it will not massage the neck of someone who’s 6′ 2″, and if you’re a long 6′ 2″, like a long torso at 6′ 2″, it’s definitely not going to massage your neck. We just had a customer who’s 5′ 11″, and thought that chair would fit him, and he got it, and it doesn’t massage his neck, and so needless to say, if you read the literature and it says it’ll fit up to 6′ 4″, or 6′ 5″, or 6′ 2″, or 6′ 3″, it’s best that you call us, so we can find out, either from our own personal experience in the chairs in our showroom, or we can contact the actual massage chair company, if we don’t have that chair in our showroom, to find out if it will really massage someone’s neck, who is 6′ 5″, or 6′ 2″, or 6′ 1″, or whatever you need. It’s very, very, very important, and it can be a little confusing to people. OK, also, oh, and as far as other new models coming out, there’s the Active L from Ogawa. They’ve had the Ogawa Active, but now they’re upgrading that to the Active L, and I’m not exactly sure what the difference is, I have to learn more about that chair, but that’s another model that’s out, and we don’t have up on our website yet, but hopefully it will be up on the website soon.
[SCREEN TEXT: 100% Free Returns – Really!]
Alan: Let’s see, oh, free returns. During the course of the holidays, we offered free returns, and I mean truly free returns, not you know, where we’ll pay for your return shipping, but we’re going to bill you for the original shipping out to you, or free returns, we’re going to pay for your return shipping, but you have to pay a 25% restocking fee. Our policy was, before the holidays, 50%, we would charge you for 50% of the return shipping fees, and but there would also be deducted credit card processing fees from the original transaction. Of course, we don’t refund white-glove delivery, so if you order white-glove delivery, and you return your chair, you don’t get that back, but over the course of the holidays, we offered 100% free returns, and so there’s no processing fees, unless it was financing. Financing processing fees are quite expensive, especially over 12 months, if you get 18, 24, 36, or 48 months, it’s quite expensive, so that would be deducted from your return refund. But the return shipping is 100% on us, if it comes back in the original packaging, the original box. If it does not, you’re going to have to, again, pay 50%, and we also don’t charge processing fees for the credit cards, nor do we back-bill you for the original shipping. So, when we say free return shipping, we mean free return shipping, except if you finance the chair for longer than 12 months, and except if you can’t ship the chair back in the original packaging. That’s a no-no, because the chair can get just destroyed, and we’ve had a couple of experiences with that, where the chair was just wrapped up in plastic and blankets on a pallet, and like a couple chairs, in particular, were ruined, completely ruined. It cost us thousands to repair them, and then that cost goes back on to you, by the way, or the shipping company, but if it’s not packaged right, you shoulder some of that blame. But anyway, so free shipping, we’re going to continue that on. It’s expensive for us, it’s not cheap, because we do have returns, and it’s not something that is, you know, it is expensive to us, and plus, when we resell a chair, we have to resell it at a discounted price because it’s considered an open box, or used, or pre-owned, and you can see a list of our pre-owned chairs on our webpage, on our pre-owned directory. And right now, I think we’ve got a two-month old Novo XT for $5999, which is a great price for that chair. It’s regularly $7999, so and that chair is in perfect condition, immaculate, and it comes in the original box. You wouldn’t even know that it was a used chair, it looks brand new. Anyway, so that chair is $5999, and I think we’re going to be having an iRobotics 7 on there, a retuned iRobotics 7, and I think that’s all we’ve got right now, but right after Christmas, of course, we sell most of our chairs during the Christmas season, or holiday season, and so we have a certain percentage of returns. That’s undeniable, we’re going to get returns, and those chairs that we get returned, unless we sell them before we post them, will be posted on that pre-owned directory, so keep an eye on that if you’re looking for a really screaming deal.
[SCREEN TEXT: Panasonic Sale Until January 14, 2018]
Alan: OK, let’s see, oh, and Panasonic has a sale right now, and they introduced this sale halfway through the month in December, and it extends to January 14th, which is next week, and you can get $1000 off on the MA73, and $1000 off on the MA70. There is an MA10, which we don’t carry. I don’t have it on my website, but they do have a lesser-priced chair called the MA10, don’t know much about it, but it’s a chair we’ve chosen not to put on website at this point, but they are going to have the new JA7, or MAJ7, which is going to be quite a bit more expensive. I think, like I say, it’s in the 9, I think it’s in the $9 to $10,000 range. Anyway, but Panasonic’s sale is going on right now.
[SCREEN TEXT: Dr. Weidner will be at his California Showroom on Monday, January 15]
Alan: I am going to be at my Southern California store next Monday, a week from today, I’ll be working there, covering for my manager, and my other staff member, who are out of town, who are busy. I think that’s Martin Luther King Day, I’m not sure, but I’m going to be there working, so if any of you want to come down and meet with me, and visit with me, or just come and chitchat about life, or chairs, or whatever, as long as I’m not too busy, I’d be happy to talk about those things too. But I will be there next Monday from 10AM until 6PM, and our showroom is in Cerritos, in Southern California, 19117 Bloomfield Avenue, on the corner of South and Bloomfield, very easy to get to it from the freeways, but I would love to meet you. So, if you’ve got some time, or you want to come down and look at some massage chairs, or you want to talk to me about massage chairs, I’d be happy to visit with you.
[SCREEN TEXT: New Website Home Page Design]
Alan: OK, and now, the site, the website has been redesigned, and you probably are aware of this if you’ve been on my website, but we changed the design quite a bit right before Black Friday. We’ve tried to make it very, very easy to navigate, and it’s very simplistic, and it is easy to navigate, in my opinion. We still have a bunch of changes to make, and I’ve talked to my web guy about it, and after the holidays, which is now, those changes should be made, but it’s quite easy to navigate around now on the website, and we’ve tried to make it very user friendly.
[SCREEN TEXT: New Chair Finder Software]
Alan: We also included our new ‘My Chair Finder’ software, which will help you to kind of nail down some chairs that you might want to look at, because it is confusing. We’ve got over 50 models, and you know, you look at them all, and on paper, they all kind of look the same until you sit in them, or until you look at the features a little bit more specifically. Well, we’ve created this software so that you can plug in what you’re interested in, plug in your budget, plug in what features you want, plug in what chair brand you want, and it’ll spit out, for you, all the models that will fall under that, under the parameters that you’ve established. Yeah, and there’s other things we could’ve, we probably could’ve done, if we could come up with a reasonable way of doing it, like someone said ‘Well, it doesn’t say there if the chair has a good neck massage.’ Well, a chair with a good neck massage, that depends on a couple things. It depends on the size of the body, the size of the torso, it depends on the shape of your curve. Some people have a very, very forward neck curve, and the rollers have trouble reaching the neck. Others have a different posture, a forward-head posture, and it’s harder to get the neck, but on other people, that same chair would be a great neck massage. So, it’s really more of a, it’s really tough to qualify things like that in this software, and maybe someday we’ll be able to do that, but for the life of me, I can’t figure out exactly how to integrate all that, and make it make sense for every single person that comes on to the website. Or even setting, like we were talking about earlier, this chair will fit someone up to 6′ 3″. Well, will it massage the neck of someone who’s 6′ 3″, I don’t know that on every chair, because we only have a certain number in our showrooms. I also don’t know if like you have a longer torso, it might say it’d fit up to 6′ 3″, or it says that it can fit you up to 6′, but you’ve got a torso that would match someone that’s 6′ 3″, and so it’s not going to hit your neck anyway. I have a longer torso, so some chairs that are shorter – I’m only 5′ 9″ – but my torso’s a little longer, some chair models do not hit my neck very good, because even though I’m under 5′ 10″, and pretty much every chair will fit me, but some will not get to the top of my neck. So, anyway, having said that, and now that I’ve confused you, and probably confused you more, I’ll just leave it at that. But anyway, the new site redesign, go and take a look at it, I really like it, and I like the usability of it, very simple, but if you have any questions or input on it, please feel free to reach out to me.
[SCREEN TEXT: Amazon Affiliate Websites – Buyer Beware … Again!]
Alan: And finally, I hear a lot, and I think I have alluded to this previously, I know I’ve alluded to this previously, but there are people going online, and they’ll find ads that are being promoted through Facebook, or Google, or whatever, that’ll say something like ‘Top 10 Massage Chairs,’ or ‘The Top 5-Selling Massage Chairs,’ and I’ll go look at these reports, and there’s chairs that I’ve never even heard of, like no-name brand chairs, and like really no-name brand chairs, I have never even heard of the name. And those reports, people buy in to those reports, and they believe them, and they wonder, you know, why I don’t sell those chairs, or some of the chairs have even been discontinued, and they’re on the best-selling list. It’s mind boggling to me, but my experience has been, after studying a lot of those reports, and those websites, they are what we call affiliate websites. They are people who are affiliates for Amazon, and they will find some massage chairs on Amazon that have a good profit margin, or have some good reviews, and they will sell those chairs, and coin them the top-selling chairs, even though we’ve never heard of them, and they may not have any warranty support, and their customer support may be terrible, and they may be out of business in another 6 months, or a year. I’d be really careful about those, you know, ‘Top 10 Chairs,’ or ‘Top 8,’ or ‘Top 5 Chairs.’ Those chair models are being sold by people who are making good commissions on them on Amazon, and they will include the most obscure chairs that we’ve never seen, or they’ll put a chair up there that’s listed at $14,000, and it’s just a cheap Chinese chair that’s just inflated in the price, and they’re hoping to sell one because they’ll make a bigger commission, so I would be very, very careful. I mean, we all fall sometimes to the lure of the profit, or the commission, or the money, but if you’re looking for objective input on a chair, please call a chair company that actually sells them, or sells all the different brands, or call, you know, if you want to know more about Osaki chairs, call Osaki. If you want to know more about Infinity chairs, call Infinity, or call an objective third party, you know, somebody that’s either an online retailer, or a brick-and-mortar store that carries all those chairs, or someone that is not even in the industry – I shouldn’t say, maybe not in the industry – but someone that doesn’t have a monetary interest in a particular model, and they’re just doing it from the good of their heart, or because there is some kind of research project, or something going on, which there aren’t, by the way, regarding the top-selling chairs on the market. So, anyway, buyer beware again, and it seems like more and more, I’m seeing these buyer beware, I’m giving you these buyer-beware things because I keep hearing about things that are really, that really make me uncomfortable in our industry. Things like hyper-inflated chair prices, things like poor return policies, things like direct consumer sales, without any retail network, things like poor after-sale support. There’s all these things that kind of come in to play, or people promoting chairs that really aren’t, under the guise of being a best seller, when they really, truly aren’t. So, maybe they will be one day, the best sellers, if this person can sell enough of them, maybe they do become the top-selling chairs, I don’t know.
[SCREEN TEXT: 888-259-5380]
Alan: But anyway, just buyer beware, and of course, you feel free to call us, if you have any questions, you can always reach me at 888-259-5380. You can reach out through our Facebook page, or through our email, my email address, or go to our ‘Contact Us’ page on the website, I’m always available to you. Well, anyway, I guess that’s about it for this week.
[SCREEN TEXT: Dr. Weidner Visiting Consumer Electronics Show (CES) This Week – Video Coming!]
Alan: We’ll see you in another couple weeks, and I’ll give you, I’ll probably post a video from the CES, not probably, I will post a video from CES, probably later this week, or next week, and you can kind of see what the new models are, and I’m not really expecting a lot of new models like last year. Last year, they had the Luraco Legend, they had the Inada Nest, they had the Infinity, I think the Imperial came, they introduced that one last year, uKnead had the new Lohas. There were a lot of new models last year, and I don’t know if there’s a lot this year. They might just be, you know, promoting the models now that they are out and about, but anyway, I’ll let you know.
[SCREEN TEXT: Please “Thumbs Up” Like This Video!!]
Alan: So, anyway, if you found this video helpful, please feel free to thumbs up ‘Like’ us on our YouTube channel, and of course, help us spread the word about massage chairs by sharing this video on your social media platforms, like Facebook, or Instagram, or Google Plus, or LinkedIn, or Twitter, or whatnot. We appreciate you helping spread the word about massage chairs. Well, I’m Dr. Alan Weidner from ‘Massage-Chair-Relief.com,’ and I will see you again in two weeks. Bye bye.
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