Become a Top-Rated, Full-Time CEO in Just a Year; Tips From Revivify's Mike Massel; Exclusive Interview for Winner Magazine| BNS News

We don't need a crystal ball to see that this calculated CEO is headed from football to fortune; Mike Massel has wowed us with his trifecta of impeccable online visual display, intuitive social strategy, and multi-lateral plans to grow Revivify Painting.  Channelling lessons from the football field, Mike has developed a balanced business plan that has hit a touch down in consumer satisfaction, earning strong ratings and recognition on platforms, such as Houzz, HomeStars and the CBRB Best Businesses Directory.  In this Q&A with BNS' Jasmine Kara, Mike details the effective method that took him from a job in advertising to being a full-time CEO - and an Ottawa favourite - in no more than a year:

Stay within your capacity, excel at the work you are doing and create your strategic plans to achieve the growth in a way that will allow you to be successful.

Mike Massel, CEO, Revivify Painting

Q & A With CEO of Revivify Painting, Mike Massel

How did you come up with the idea to start Revivify Painting and what purpose did you intend to serve with the concept?

I had always painted. I started when I was in high school with some friends, and worked for different companies through university and beyond. I was working in the advertising agency world when my brother was looking to change his career path, so we decided to start a small painting company that I could help with on the side of my career. Six months after that, we were so swamped with work, we needed to buy a vehicle and hire staff; six months after that, our team had grown to six full-time employees, and I had quit my job in order to take on this challenge, full-time. Our concept is simple: we try to bring the highest level of customer service and professionalism to an industry that is historically lacking in these two areas.

Which steps have you taken for the company to achieve the level of consumer trust that has been nationally recognized?

Our two key steps to developing consumer trust are contradictory. On one hand, we strive for consistency. I want the painting experience for our customers to match the quoting experience. I want the brand values to be present throughout the entire experience; this establishes trust with the customers, so that they know what they are getting every time. On the other hand, I want customization and personalization, specific to the customer, to make them feel that we really care. We do this by taking non-core tasks and make them personalized to the client. We try to learn their schedules for the days we are on site, in advance, so we know what times are easiest to arrive and leave with clients' busy schedules (with kids, etc). We know what times they might be on work calls to limit our noise. We learn whether or not they are coffee or tea drinkers, and may bring one in the morning. Through consistency on the core brand values and customization of the personal experience, we have been able to achieve a high level of trust with our customers, which is represented in our reviews, online.

What part of your education or other experiences do you feel was the most helpful in preparing you for success?

My experience playing university football, prior to getting into the business world, gave me a lot of the skills that I lean on, today. Hard work, teamwork, discipline, and determination were all things learned on the football field that apply directly to the way I approach my business. Sometimes, when I’m exhausted, I think back to all those sprints in the freezing cold on rainy nights, and I think if I can make it through that, there is no way I am packing it up at work!

Which strategies have you found the most effective in growing your audience/ bringing awareness of your service to a larger consumer group? 

Our most effective marketing strategy has been paid advertising through Google and different social media channels. My goal with our marketing is to capture people at the correct time of the buyer cycle, in order to be as efficient with my marketing investment as we can. I am not that interested in marketing to tire-kickers or people that are looking to do a DIY project; we spend our time focusing on customers who want to hire a painting company, so that every dollar that we spend has the opportunity to drive marketing ROI.

Which partnerships, if any, have been the most constructive in bringing your goals closer to becoming a reality?

Our partnerships with our paint suppliers have become incredibly important to us. Not only do they provide us with a quality product that we use day-in and day-out, but the representatives there act as a sounding board for new ideas - a trouble-shooter when problems arise on our job sites and an advocate for our business with their customers. We wouldn't be where we are today without these relationships.

Are there any challenges that made it difficult to continue operation and that you managed to overcome? What was your approach to get past these?

Covid-19 was a challenge for every small business in the country. Our business has taken a hit on our residential side of the operation. People were just not as comfortable as they once were with strangers inside their homes. We have been able to overcome this obstacle, thanks, in part, to a loyal staff that was willing to stay along for the bumpy ride. We adjusted our business to be more new-construction focused than before, which allowed us to continue our growth path. Even throughout the pandemic, we have been able to reach all of our goals, established and more, tripling in size since March 2020.

How do you balance work, passions/hobbies, and relationships?

It definitely isn’t easy to balance all of these things while running a growing small-business. I’ve always been able to focus on the long-term goals and not worry so much about the day-to-day. It’s important to make sure that the people in your life understand the long-term vision so they won't be disappointed if you need to say no to a night out or pick up a phone call on the golf course. While I want to say I make time for all of it, sometimes, the business just has to come first. For the time being, my passion is building my businesses because I know that they are the key to a life that has a lot more balance in the future. 

What are your future plans to build on your achievements and fulfill your vision for success, and what developments can your audience or clientele look forward to expecting next?

Our next step is franchising the business. Over the past three years, we have built a successful formula for a repeatable business. We have developed our own proprietary software and a strong training program. We have a great reputation and are recognized in the areas we serve. We are launching our first and second franchises this spring, and we cannot wait to work with entrepreneurs who want to build successful businesses.

What advice would you like to give readers that hope to achieve success in your field?

Stay disciplined. Create a plan for success and stick to it. Growing too quickly can be a real problem for a small business. Labour capacity, cash flow, management and financing are all things that do not happen over night. Stay within your capacity, excel at the work you are doing and create your strategic plans to achieve the growth in a way that will allow you to be successful.


We thank Mike for sharing these insights and experiences with Winner Magazine's readers.  If you are looking for professional painting services in the Ottawa area, we would recommend reaching out to Mike at Revivify Painting!

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