Everyone loves a decorative concrete success story! We’d like to say this success happened magically. Not so!
Concrete Revival, LLC, Irene, SD is indeed a success, but it’s the result of hard work, business acumen and a strong dedication to making their business the best it can be. Add to that a good helping of talent and design ability and the result is a company well known for excellence.
Jared Huber and Derek Farley, co-owners and operators of Concrete Revival, have worked hard to build a positive company reputation by producing some concrete makeovers that are nothing short of amazing.
Recently they shared with us their story of how Concrete Revival began, its growth and their thoughts about the future of the industry.
Q. How did you become interested in Engrave-A-Crete?
A. We first became aware of the engraving process by watching a home improvement show on television. After the initial discovery, we started researching on the Internet and soon found the Engrave-A-Crete website.
At that point, we started a discussion with Debbie (sales department) on what it all entailed. Her excitement for the process soon became contagious and we quickly found ourselves attending a seminar.
After receiving our (Engrave-a-Crete) training and certification, we ended up buying a turnkey package to start our business.
Concrete Revival came to life in the summer of 2012.
Q. How did you market your business in the beginning? How has that changed?
A. Initially, our business marketing strategy began with word of mouth. Our first job was for Jared’s parents. We completed five different looks at their farm in preparation for their collaborative 50th birthday party. That first exposure helped us showcase our talents and show people what exactly we are about.
From that point, we started to consider how we would gain additional interest. We developed our own website, created a Facebook page, printed business cards, logoed our vehicles and began running a small print ad in our local newspaper.
These were just stepping stones to one of our most lucrative marketing opportunities – Trade and Home Shows.
We have maintained all of the above and have incorporated a few new alternatives. Recently, our area was inundated with heavy rainfall and flooding. Recognizing an opportunity to do more interior work, we campaigned local towns and delivered information packets – attached to water bottles and delivered them to customers’ doorsteps by hand. This generated some positive interest and eventually led to some additional jobs.
Q. What’s the biggest challenge you face in your business? How have you overcome it?
A. Our biggest challenge has always been trying to educate people on what exactly we do. Our name suggests that we are miracle workers for concrete. Although we are capable of achieving almost any look, we are not able to help people pour, demolish or repair certain concrete projects. I wouldn’t say we are done fighting this battle yet and it will probably be an endless pursuit.
Regardless, by continuously making our presence known, getting in front of people, and explaining our processes and capability thoroughly , we are slowly gaining leverage on a captive audience.
Q. What’s your favorite part of owning your own business? Least favorite?
A. Independence to control and dictate a project’s development and execution is one of our favorite parts of owning our business. Adding aesthetic enhancement and creating a timeless piece of art is a very close second.
Our least favorite part of being business owners is the constant struggle to find new opportunities. With an audience that is unfamiliar with your process, or is already misinformed on what you offer (example: everyone thinks this is a stamp or overlay process) it can be quite challenging. The threat of not being able to put food on the table or keep the lights on is a good motivator to keep our noses to the grindstone.
Q. What are your best selling patterns?
A. A majority seem to gravitate to either a marble or flagstone pattern. We prefer to incorporate any engraved pattern into our work to help distinguish us from other flooring contractors.
Q. How have you seen the decorative concrete industry change since you’ve been a part of it? How do you expect it to change in the future? Why?
A. In the brief time we have been in the industry, we have already experienced a number of changes. Prior to being in this industry, Jared managed a Fence & Deck company and I (Derek) was a Landscape Designer. Both of us were familiar with concrete, but not the vast number of products that enhance it.
Although we primarily use Concrete Resurrection products (from Engrave-A-Crete) for all our projects, we have had unique circumstances that require additional products.
We always consult with Engrave-A-Crete before trying to incorporate third-party options. Their fantastic customer service has provided us with great guidance and continues to keep our mistakes and costs down.
Our forecast for future changes to the decorative concrete industry would be an increase in the number of colors available for acid stains, making longer lasting and more durable exterior sealers, and developing an epoxy system that tolerates hydrostatic pressure and consistently moist environments.
Q. Which Engrave-A-Crete tools do you own? Use most?
A. We own almost every tool Engrave-A-Crete has produced. When we purchased our turnkey package, we were provided the following: Sandroid, Blastin’ Betty, Mongoose, Cobra and the KaleidoCrete Shark, Barracuda and Wasp. We use the Mongoose the most and the KaleidoCrete system a close second.
We have been very impressed with the quality of the tools and their maneuverability. Their craftsmanship and reliability to complete our projects speak volumes.
Q. How do customers react to their engraved concrete jobs?
A. The old saying goes, “When you do something right, it appears that nothing was done at all.” We like to think our customers are happy after we complete their project and we’ve done our job right, but nothing is more satisfying than hearing them say, “Wow, I can’t believe this is concrete!”
We have had many customers do additional work with us after completing one project already. Rarely, we have people say that they wish they had chosen a different color, done less enhancements, or had simplified their projects to keep costs down. We aim to please and let the occasional critics sing, it only makes our next project better and helps keep our game sharp.
Kudos from Engrave-A-Crete to Derek Farley and Jared Huber for outstanding workmanship and setting high standards for the decorative concrete industry. You make us proud!
Jared and Derek are 2012 graduates of the Engrave-a-Crete Discovery & Training Seminar. They offer a wide range of decorative concrete services.
To see more of their impressive work, visit and like their Concrete Revival, LLC Facebook page or visit their website at http://www.concrete-revival.com .