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SSA Las Vegas Sleep Products Seminar Shares Best Practices for Profitable ‘Green’ Marketing

Furniture World News


Vicki Worden

Winning over today’s conscientious consumers with accurate product claims will be the subject of a bedding retailer seminar titled “Making Green on ‘Green’” presented during the Las Vegas Market by the Specialty Sleep Association (SSA) on Tuesday, Jan.31, from 11 a.m. to noon in the SSA Showroom (C-1350). The event is open to all market attendees.

When it comes to sleep products, claims about “natural” and “organic” products are facing increasing consumer skepticism and scrutiny from the Federal Trade Commission—which is considering new limits for marketers.

“Information can pave the way for stores to reach new customers,” said Vicki Worden, president, Worden Associates, Inc., who is leading the Vegas Market seminar. “A 2010 consumer study conducted by Furniture Today magazine and HGTV indicated that around 30 percent of consumers are aware of green mattress options, which represents a big opportunity to reach an even wider audience. Better communication to drive awareness can result in improved sales of these products that may also deliver high margins to retailers.”

The seminar will explore best practices for promoting green sleep products in ways that eliminate consumer confusion and solidify a purchase decision with documented claims. The SSA has developed information on terminology and definitions to help marketers substantiate environmental claims and avoid FTC scrutiny and fines.

Worden will also discuss proposed new limits on claims as released by the FTC on Oct. 6, 2010. These new guidelines to its Green Guides for product marketing, termed “the FTC Proposed Revisions,” are expected to be released as final in 2012 with few changes expected from the version published in 2010. The new guidance discusses terms like “natural”, “organic,” “recyclable” and also addresses the use of product identifications and seals of approval by marketers. Worden will also address trends in packaging, state law label issues, and other federal requirements impacting new products.

Worden is a sustainability consultant working with manufacturers, retailers, and trade associations on the development and launch of sustainable and environmentally focused products and services. Her expertise includes environmental standards and green building, and she is a former a judge of the White House Sustainability Awards.

For additional information regarding the SSA, visit www.sleepinformation.org, or contact Executive Director, Tambra Jones, at tambra@sleepinformation.org, 559-868-4187, 559-676-8639.

About the Specialty Sleep Assn. Founded in 1995, the Specialty Sleep Association (SSA) is a national, not-for-profit organization created to facilitate the growth and positive awareness of the specialty sleep category. Its members develop or sell specialty sleep products including natural/bio-based and organic bedding, latex, memory foam, air, gel, water, adjustable, new spring technologies and related products. SSA membership includes more than 100 manufacturers and retailers ranging from small, family-owned businesses to large corporations. SSA has showrooms in Las Vegas and High Point.