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David Perry

Selling Sleep

Marketing Overview

Not getting enough sleep affects us in many ways and in many places: At home, at work, and in the bedroom.
     This week we open the bedroom door and take a quick peek inside. And we find that inadequate sleep takes a toll on intimate activities for all types of consumers, ranging from vigorous exercisers to those who don't exercise at all.
     There are some who think industry marketers should not be talking about sex and sleep, but we disagree. Sex is a topic of great interest to a great many consumers. If we can help consumers get more sleep and thereby improve their sex lives, that's a worthwhile endeavor for our industry.

Applying the Findings

Here's where it gets tricky. There are those who say that retail sales associates should never bring up sex on their sales floors - that the subject is just too sensitive for them to safely handle. The exception is when consumers bring up a sex issue on their own.
     These findings show that even those who are vigorous exercisers, a group that enjoys significant sleep benefits over non-exercisers, say their intimate activities are impacted by not getting adequate sleep. More than one-third of the vigorous exercisers are in that group. Slightly more than half of the moderate and light exercisers report inadequate sleep impacts their intimate or sexual relations, and the figure rises to 56% of non-exercisers.
     Those are figures that should make any consumer sit up and take notice. Inadequate sleep impacts consumers in many ways, including in the bedroom. That's a message that we've got to find a way to deliver to consumers.

Sex problems


Percent of those who do not get adequate sleep


Vigorous exercisers


Moderate exercisers


Light exercisers




Source: National Sleep Foundation 2013 Poll

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