Transcript of Video Titled “Massage Chair Industry Update – September 21, 2017”
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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 Thursday September 21st. Summer is officially over, and fall is here, and the fourth quarter is just around the corner, and that is when we start to see a real uptake in sales. Maybe not a whole lot of new models, even though we are expecting the Luraco Legend, and we may see some other – maybe one or two other models – I’m not sure, I haven’t heard of anything else coming down the pike before Black Friday/Cyber Monday. But anyway, this is the time of the year when there’s a lot of activity, so a lot of, there’s certainly an uptake in inventory, and an uptake in interest, and an uptake in visitors to the site, and store purchases, and whatnot. So, anyway, let’s get in to what we’ve got today.
[SCREEN TEXT: Ogawa Sale!]
Alan: We don’t have a lot of things to cover today, but I will let you know that Ogawa has a sale going on right now where until September 28th, you can get the free extended warranty, and the $500 off discount, or instant savings, on the Ogawa Smart 3D massage chair, and there’s also $1500 off the Ogawa Active. Now, their sales have been going on throughout the year, and the pricing of this Active has gone up and down incredibly, and right now it’s down to $2999, and that’s a good price. I don’t know what’s going on with that chair, if they’re planning on eventually discontinuing it, because the price has been everywhere from $4999, down to $4499, now down to $2999 until the 28th, then I think it’s back up to $3499, or something like that, but anyway, it’s a decent chair, a good price on it, that’s for sure. Also, I mentioned about Ogawa that they discontinued the Refresh model some time ago, and they’re coming out with a new Refresh model. I haven’t heard any more about it since that time, but when I do, you’ll be the first to know.
[SCREEN TEXT: Cream Inada Flex 3s Discontinued]
Alan: The ‘Cream’ Flex 3s is now out of stock, and has been discontinued, so you can get the ‘Brown’ and the ‘Black’ in the Inada Flex 3s, but not the ‘Cream’ anymore.
[SCREEN TEXT: Johnson Wellness Massage Chairs]
Alan: We have now added the Johnson Wellness chairs back to the website. I don’t have all the features listed, but I do have the chairs there. There’s the J6800 and the J5800 and the J5600, and for those of you that have gone quite a way back with me, you’ll know that we used to carry the Johnson Wellness chairs, and I actually had a J6800 in our showroom in Utah, and then they decided to go through private labeling, and they had a chair come out called the Navitas Sleep through Human Touch. They have the Regal, or is it the Regent, one of those chairs, I can’t even remember now, through Osaki, and so we had to take the chairs off our website. Well, they’re back up now, I just have to update all the figures, or all the features, and all the specs, and all that sort of thing.
[SCREEN TEXT: Inner Balance & Synca Massage Chair Brands]
Alan: But they also have a line called Inner Balance, which we will also be having on the website. The Inner Balance, the only chair they have right now is called the Gen, can’t tell you much about that right now, and they also have a new brand called Synca, S-Y-N-C-A, and they’ve got a small little chair that they’re going to send us for our showroom, but I think the price of it’s like $900. It kind of reminds me, maybe of an iJoy, from Human Touch. The iJoy was a great chair, especially for younger people, because it was lower to the ground, and if you had bad knees, a lot of kids don’t have bad knees, and bad hips, and bad ankles, so it’s not that hard to get out of a chair like that for smaller folk, for younger folk, I should say. But this chair is kind of a small, to the ground chair as well, I believe it’s an L-track chair, don’t know much more about it than that, but when we do hear more about it, we’ll let you know. It’s, of course, not a full-fledged chair, it’s more of just a simple, little, well, we call them gamer chairs, but I will let you know, the more I learn about it.
Alan: Also, oh, I have added a couple of articles over the last couple of weeks. I wrote a review about the Infinity Altera, I may have mentioned this in one of the previous updates, and I just wrote an article this week about the Inada Nest. Now, the Inada Nest is their brand new chair, and I really like that chair. It’s a small chair, it doesn’t leave a huge footprint, it can handle up to 6′ tall. It says up to 6′ 3″ or 6′ 4″, I’m not sure, I haven’t had anybody that tall sit in it yet, so I can’t verify it. I mean, they’ll probably fit in it, but I can’t verify that the neck will get a good massage. This is the thing, a lot of these chairs – and this is why I don’t put a lot of credence in to the height recommendations for massage chairs – because we get those numbers from the massage chair companies. Well, we have found that they will – a lot of the massage chair companies will say ‘Oh, it will fit anywhere from 5′ up to 6′ 3″,’ and then we have somebody sit in the chair that’s 6′ 3″, and we find that the chair does not – the person fits in the chair, but the chair does not give a good massage on the neck, so the rollers aren’t long, or the rolling track’s not high enough to get to the neck. So, sometimes those numbers are a little misleading. Yes, you will fit in a chair if you’re 6′ 3″, a lot of these chairs, but will it give you a good neck massage, will the rollers be able to reach up your neck? Plus, if you’ve got more torso than legs, like I’ve got more torso than I do legs, I’m not that tall, I’m only 5′ 9″, but I’ve got more torso than legs, so my legs will fit anywhere, but my torso, on some of the chairs that say they’ll fit up to 6′, even my neck won’t get a massage, you know, at the top of the neck, which is where I like to have it done because I get these headaches. Muscles getting tight after a day of sitting on the chairs, or after playing hockey, or whatever, and those muscles get tight, and I like to get them worked over, and some of those chairs will not hit those muscles. They’re called sub occipitals, right at the base of the skull, I call them the headache muscles. But anyway, where was I going with that? Oh, well, anyway, the Inada Nest says that it’ll fit someone 6′ 3″, I’m not sure exactly what it’ll fit, but the chair is cool. It’s got independent, like I call it independent suspension, for the left and right rollers. It is a quad-roller chair, it’s got foot-and-calf airbags, not foot rollers, none of the Japanese chairs do at this point, but you’ve got a – it’s got a couple little knobules – rubber plates with knobules on them that you put at the front of the calves that’ll massage the anterior tibialis muscles, which are the muscles right next to the shin bone. That’s where you usually get shin splints, if you’ve heard that term, that’s what runners would call shin splints. Also, it’s got the new redesigned rollers, it’s not just a roller ball, it is a ball, but it has the shape of like a pumpkin surface, it’s a devoted surface, and I really felt that chair to be quite intense on my levator scapula muscles, right at the top of the shoulder blades, which is a very commonly tight area for a lot of people, and me also, but I found that chair really did a good job on that muscle. It did a good job on the neck, and this is the most intense massage chair of all the current models that Inada has. The DreamWave is great, and you can adjust the intensity of that to make it more intense. The Flex 3s is a pretty gentle chair, even at its maximum intensity, but the Nest, this chair will really dig in, it does a great job, I really like it. Anyway, if you want to read my review, go ahead and go to my blog, or my article library, it’s on the website, and you can see what’s cooking there.
[SCREEN TEXT: Website Redesign Coming!]
Alan: We are also currently working on a site redesign, it’s been a little slow going because we’ve made some changes. We’ve gotten some feedback on some changes that might need to be made, and we’re also working on the ‘My Chair Finder,’ which is a software that’ll help you determine what chair is good for you, and what chair will meet your needs, and I’m also going in to a little bit more detail about features. You know, I throw out terms like 3D rollers, and zero gravity, and L-track, and I’ve been in the business long enough that I just assume that everybody knows what I’m talking about, and I know that it’s not true, and I’ve had to kind of be reawakened to that. And so, on the new redesign, we’re going to have a section in the ‘My Chair Finder’ software, where it has a list of all the features you can select, when you’re trying to find a chair with the particular features you want. But it will explain, you know, it’ll have an informational window that’ll explain what each of those features are, so you’re never left in the dark about what we’re talking about. And that’s kind of the root of us, or when I say us, I mean people in the industry, to use terms that we assume everybody knows, but somebody new to the industry will just kind of look at you like a deer in the headlights, ‘What the dickens are you talking about?’ Anyway, so but we hope to have that site redesign done, you know, in the beginning of the fourth quarter. Now, let’s see, that’s about it for the news.
[SCREEN TEXT: Threshold vs. Curbside Delivery]
Alan: Oh, one thing I was going to mention about Johnson Wellness, their chairs, their shipping includes ‘Threshold Delivery,’ which means they’ll bring the chair, not just to your curb, or to your porch, like most other companies do, but they will bring the chair actually through the threshold of your doorway, in to your home. Now, they won’t set it up, that’s white-glove delivery, and they won’t move it to another room, and I recommend usually, you know, this is a little tip of the trade, but if you order regular delivery, and this can apply to threshold delivery or just curbside delivery, and you don’t want to pay for white-glove delivery, because most of these chairs are pretty easy to assemble, they’re pretty straightforward, but you just can’t lift the bloody thing in to where you want it to go, in to the room you want it to go, or go down the stairs, or up the stairs, you want it to go, offer the delivery guys $20, maybe $40 if you got a big old house, and it’s got to go up some stairs, or down some stairs, offer the guys $20 or $40, and they’ll do it for you. Most of the time, they’ll do it for you, just give them a little cash, you know, kind of like a little spiff, and say ‘Hey, could you just bring that chair up here and in to the room, and I’ll take care of the assembly?’ but otherwise, they’re going to leave it like out in front of your house. Unless it’s Johnson Wellness, and it looks like they’re going to do threshold delivery, so they’ll bring it inside your doorway, they’ll bring it past the threshold of your home.
[SCREEN TEXT: READ THE FINE PRINT of Return Policies & Warranties!! BUYER BEWARE!]
Alan: Now, I have talked about this before, I try to end these industry updates with a little nugget of information to help you make a wise decision when buying a chair, and the thing that is frustrating to me, and I’ve been in the industry a long time, and we try to be as transparent as we can about how our warranties, the chair companies’ warranties, about our return policies, we try to be very transparent and very clear, but I have run across a number of sites that are referred to me by customers who feel like they are being deceived. And like, maybe saying something like, you know, a 10-year warranty on a chair, when in fact, it’s maybe a 10-year structural warranty, and I’ve been in this business over 12 years, I’ve seen one structural warranty claim, and that was because the chair came bent. It was a Panasonic chair, and the whole frame was bent when it left the factory, and they fixed that. But 10 years of structural warranty means nothing to me, as far as you know, the nuts and bolts of a real warranty. And so, 10 years of structural warranty, but it’ll be couched as a 10-year warranty, which is extremely misleading, because people are thinking ‘Oh, they’re going to come and fix my chair.’ Well, then then you find out maybe that you’ve got one-year parts-and-labor warranty, well then, you kind of mistake that. Maybe there’s, maybe just one year of parts, maybe it’s three years of parts, maybe, who knows what it is, but make sure you read the fine print as to what your warranty is. Here’s another one I saw – a return policy that had – it was a seven-day return policy, seven days. I mean, is that from the date of purchase, or the date that the chair is delivered? Well, if the chair is delivered on a Monday, you have to have that chair back to them by the following Monday, that’s the seven-day warranty period. Unless there’s something else to it, but it’s basically a way to weasel out of having to ever deal with a return. Or a return policy that says ‘a free return,’ and then you find out that it’s not free, the return shipping’s free, but then they’re going to ding you for the freight that it took to get the chair to you, which was originally free delivery, and so it’s misleading, and I get comments from customers all the time about this, and I don’t know what to say. I mean, and if you feel misled, you know, call the company and tell them that, or write a review, or call the Better Business Bureau, I don’t know what, but just, ultimately, you have to read the fine print on all these websites, and I’ll admit it, some of the websites don’t even have fine print. I remember looking at one website that said they had a, oh, I can’t remember, it was some kind of warranty they said they had, and I went to look on their warranty, I looked on their website for the warranty, somewhere to be found, and it was nowhere to be found. I think it said something like ‘This is the best warranty in the business,’ that was it. It had no details, or points, or description of a warranty in any detail whatsoever, so you have no idea what’s covered. You don’t know what parts are covered, and if labor’s covered, and you don’t know what the return policy is, you don’t know if it’s, well, whatever. Just please ultimately, the responsibility rests on your shoulders, and you know, we can, you know, talk smack about different websites, and their warranties, and their return policies, but you know what, the return policies are as they are. Maybe their advertising’s a little misleading, and that’s something you cannot control, but you can control whether you read the fine print or not. So, please read the fine print, this is a gift, I’m giving you a gift, read the fine print. And please, here’s another quick tip, make sure you do a search, and find out about that company’s after-sale support, or the massage chair company that made the chair for you, what their after-sale support is all about. Make sure you feel comfortable with that, because once that money has left your hands, and gone to the hands of the retailer, it’s not always easy to get that money back, because of these, you know, these return policies, or this restocking fee that you didn’t know about that was in the fine print, or because, you know, you bought it from a guy that sells them out of his garage, or he sells them, he’s the only distributor of the chair, so the only person you have recourse with is him, and if has your number on caller ID, and he knows that you’re a customer that’s already purchased, and he doesn’t want to answer that phone, he won’t answer the phone, and you’re out of luck. And so, just be very wary of everything you read, and everything you see, and likewise in my site, if you see something on my site that doesn’t make sense, or you’re wary about it, let me know, and I will make sure that it is clear on our website. And like, my return policy is very, very specifically laid out, you know, what the return cost would be, what the, you know, what the length of the warranty is, from what date to what date. I mean, we try to make it as clear as possible, so there’s not any misunderstanding, or feeling like you’ve been misled. But you have to do the fine print reading, no one’s going to do that for you, and a lot of these companies are not going to tell you what the fine print is. Heck, I don’t even go in to the details of my warranty, because I don’t even think to mention it, but they know it’s a 90-day return policy, but we will, we’ve got it on our website, it’s very easy to find, and we always recommend looking at the return policy before you dive in to buying a chair. Anyway, I’m on a bit of a soapbox, and I’m kind of yacking too much, I apologize for that.
[SCREEN TEXT: Please “Thumbs Up” Like This Video!!]
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[SCREEN TEXT: 888-259-5380]
Alan: I’m Dr. Alan Weidner from ‘Massage-Chair-Relief.com,’ you can give me a call at 888-259-5380 anytime, and myself, or someone in one of the stores will talk to you, and love to visit with you. But I hope you have a fantastic week, and I’ll see you again in two weeks. Bye bye.
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