READER SUBMITTED CONTENT Riding the ebb and flow of a hybridized market economy is hard enough when it’s static, but under volatile conditions, the majority of those engaging in what could be deemed innovative business opt to float rather than swim as they boldly assume that the current market risks outweigh rewards.
Riding the ebb and flow of a hybridized market economy is hard enough when it’s static, but under volatile conditions, the majority of those engaging in what could be deemed innovative business opt to float rather than swim as they boldly assume that the current market risks outweigh rewards. This is of course logical in terms of forecasts and projections, but the best business models are not always practical. Thinking outside of the box and enduring rough seas can pay off in dividends. Gene Minel of Gene’s Mattress Rides is trying to ride the current wave of uncertainty right to the top.
JEWB: How did you find yourself in the mattress riding business?
GENE: John on the third evicted — rounded up my boy and got all them mattress left up there.
So it is safe to assume this is a family oriented business.
Yes, Gene watches the mattresses outside the window if I’m not around.
Gene is your son?
But you share the same first name?
Yea, my girl like Genes.
It has been said that the current global economic climate is having the most detrimental impact on the small business owner and entrepreneur. Do you agree or disagree with this statement?
Shoot, I don’t pay any attention to China or the Vietnamese.
Fair enough. When you set out on your current business venture, did you have any reservations? I mean, it would appear that you are filling a niche market that many would consider untenable.
Mattress riding is mattress riding. Somebody always gonna wanna ride a mattress.
I suppose marketing is an integral part of business in general and yours in particular. I was actually able to find your location today as a result of a friend’s recommendation. This hasn’t been a standard means of advertising in our current era, although I’ll say it was the rule historically, and we do appear to be moving back into that direction. But I digress. I see your business is well marked by a combination of signs. Did you hire someone to create them?
Kayla got a printer.
Does the majority of your business come via word of mouth or do you advertise nationally or locally?
I DO NOT advertise. Mostly the mattresses get set up for bouncing or play by the kids on the block. If they pay once, I let them have at it.
Many businesses have found that the utilization of social networks like Yelp, FourSquare, and Twitter have had mixed results, but the awareness that comes via virality has unquestionably forced merchants into a new paradigm which systemically changes the loyalty and rewards system the business community is accustomed to. So Gene, it appears many people are now turning to what can be considered alternative medias as a primary information source when determining a destination. Do you think that this works as an advantage or disadvantage to a merchant in you position?
I’ll just do me.
Do you have a Twitter?
OK so moving on, do you see yourself expanding over the next few years?
Not really. Once the mattress give, the mattress give.
Ain’t that the truth, brother.
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