From one millennial to (some) other millennials, I’m fully aware of the nasty things that older generations have often said about us.
But today, we’re going to only talk about the good… I’m going to talk about mattresses.
😂 yep, you read that right.
I’m also going to talk a little about sofas.
But mostly mattresses.
And maybe a little bit of Skunkworks. 🤔
What is… Skunkworks? Weird word, I know. It was developed years ago during World War II in a research and development project (Chaffey & Ellis-Chadwick, 2019). There’s a lot of history there, but the term was often referred to “innovative opportunities and business benefits” (Chaffey & Ellis-Chadwick, 2019, p. 164).
Now, let’s come back to the mattress industry and one heck of a business model.
In 2015, Dany Milham and Mitchell Taylor created Koala, an Australian mattress company (Ice, 2016; Cleanthous, 2018; Koala, 2019a). They launched the original Koala mattress (Image 6) with the intention to disrupt an industry that hadn’t actually experienced the new technological environment (Ice, 2016). #Millennials
What I think is really cool about this company is that they’re online, they’re easy, and they’re thoughtful.
Let me break these down for you.
The ultimate online business model
To start off, Koala replaced the traditional expectations of an overpriced mattress at some retailer showroom with a click of a button (Koala, 2019a). These days, we’re all shopping online – so why can’t we shop for a decently-priced bed online too? They literally combined furniture and the digital world that we live in (Koala, 2019a). 🤷🏻♀️
Their online business model allows Koala to have full control over the development and design of the mattress in-house, ensuring that consumers are receiving high-quality and high-tech mattresses that doesn’t affect planet Earth in such a critical way (Ice, 2016; Koala, 2019a). One for you, Glen Coco. You go, Glen Coco. ✅
My favourite thing about this brand is that they’ve focused on efficiency and convenience (Ice, 2016), which is what the online world is typically about, right? Right.
“Easy to buy, easy to try, easy to move, easy on your wallet”(Koala, 2019b)
Koala prides themselves on their product offering, and how they offer it. They say they’re “easy to buy” as they only design a small number of products (Koala, 2019b), which removes the suffering of you walking into numerous shops and comparing so many different version of the same product. #Finally
They don’t make the purchasing process stressful at all, meaning that you’re guaranteed delivery within four hours and a trial run for 120 nights just so you can test out their mattress or sofa (Image 7), and get a full refund if it’s not for you (Koala, 2019b). Not to mention, a free pickup service (Koala, 2019b). That way, you don’t need to worry about losing a portion of the money you paid for a product that you might not even like, or doesn’t work for you.
The original Koala mattress (Image 8) and the original Koala sofa was designed with the consumer in mind (Koala, 2019), which is really what we love to hear. They ensured that these products were easy to set up without using any tools (IKEA, it was nice knowing you), and that they were also easy to pack away in case you ever move (Koala, 2019b).
And again, the purchasing process isn’t difficult. Koala sell directly to you, and deliver directly to you (Koala, 2019b). #TalkAboutWinning
Thoughtful with a capital T
If you purchase a mattress, you adopt a koala. 🐨
If you purchase a sofa, you adopt a turtle. 🐢
One more time for the people at the back?
Koala develop sustainable products and operate a sustainable business (Koala, 2019d).
They’ve partnered up with the World Wildlife Fund (WWF) to help with endangered wildlife and their declining habitats (Koala, 2019c). So, when you buy the original Koala mattress, you’re actually helping save the life of a real koala (Koala, 2019c). And when you buy the original Koala sofa (Image 9), you’re contributing funds in research to prevent turtles from getting extinct (Koala, 2019c).
They test products for durability and health safety (Koala, 2019d), to ensure that your mattress is safe and won’t let any creepy crawlies into your home… or your skin. 🤢
They visit their suppliers and conduct a risk profile, before asking them to agree to a Supplier Code of Conduct (Koala, 2019d).
They recycle or donate the returned items to charity, and are members of Soft Landing (Koala, 2019d). Soft Landing operates across New South Wales, the Australian Capital Territory (woo!), Victoria and Western Australia to recycle mattresses (Soft Landing, 2019).
And the most important thing for any company? Koala believes that business can authentically do good for both the environment and the consumer (Koala, 2019a). 👏
If I bring this blog post full circle and take you back to that weird word, Skunkworks, you can see how Koala combined the mattress industry and the internet to create an innovative and creative business model (Chaffey & Ellis-Chadwick, 2019). In addition to launching their website, they:
- Received viral exposure by creating YouTube videos showcasing how to unbox a Koala mattress;
- Placed Facebook Ads with great content;
- Used Search Ads and Product Listing Ads on Google to expand their advertising strategy;
- Created a blog focusing on sleeping and lifestyle tips;
- Wrote articles based on their products; and
- Consistently grew their online presence by actively posting organic content on social media platforms such as Facebook, Instagram and Instagram Stories (Cleanthous, 2018).
I mean, I’m definitely sold on a Koala mattress… so maybe my boyfriend will actually follow through and buy one for that house he bought me. 😇 #Kidding… sorta.
Chaffey, D. & Ellis-Chadwick, F. (2019). Digital Marketing: Strategy, Implementation and Practice. United Kingdom: Pearson.
Cleanthous, A. (2018). From Zero to $13 Million in 12 months – Koala’s Growth Strategy. Retrieved from Web Profits: https://www.growthmanifesto.com/case-study-koala-growth-strategy/
Ice, B. (2016). Disruption, expansion and good causes with Koala mattresses. Retrieved from Marketing Mag:https://www.marketingmag.com.au/hubs-c/disruption-expansion-good-causes-koala-mattresses/
Koala. (2019a). About – Koala. Retrieved from Koala: https://au.koala.com/about
Koala. (2019b). Koala Mattress. Mattresses In-a-Box For Sale Online Australia. Retrieved from Koala: https://au.koala.com/
Koala. (2019c). Our Mission – Koala. Retrieved from: https://au.koala.com/our-mission
Koala. (2019d). Thrivability @ Koala – Changing Habitats For The Better – Koala. Retrieved from Koala: https://au.koala.com/sustainability
Soft Landing. (2019). Australia’s Home of Mattress Recycling. Retrieved from Soft Landing: https://www.softlanding.com.au/about-us/