We recently interviewed Christopher Gonzales a U.S. Army veteran who co-owns Magna Painting of Helotes with his wife Crystal. Magna Painters of Helotes is a locally owned and family run franchise. As the interview progressed, we were very surprised at the pace of growth over the last few years, especially when Chris revealed they have new franchise locations in the works!
Before we write the interview in this article, we want to extend a big thank you to Chris for taking the time and accepting our interview request. We are striving to keep our coverage as local as possible, Thank you Chris.
Matt: When did you start your business in Helotes?
Chris: We started in 2014 and transitioned into the Magna brand in 2017 after some company restructuring.
Matt: Why did you select Helotes as the corporate headquarters and continue to stay once you began franchising?
Chris: The main reason is that I always like this area. We were married in Helotes and really wanted to stay in the area. The other franchise established in San Antonio to focus on that market while I remained to focus on Helotes and manage expansion.
Matt: Do you have more customers inside Helotes or outside?
Chris: Our Helotes location is pretty much an even split between Helotes and the Alamo Ranch area. The Alamo Ranch area customers are huge supporters of local businesses just like our Helotes customers, and they consider our Helotes branch local.
Matt: We understand you have franchised your business. Can you elaborate on when that happened and how many franchise locations you have?
Chris: Yes, I’m happy to share this exciting news. In 2018 we took the Magna brand and established two franchises. One located in Helotes and the new location in San Antonio. In 2020 we were fortunate enough to establish a third location in Stone Oak.
Matt: Do you have plans to continue franchising into other areas in the near future?
Chris: Yes, our next franchise is planned to open in Boerne by the beginning of next year due to the pandemic pushing our plans back slightly in 2020. In addition to Boerne, we do have plans for a franchise location in New Braunfels. However, the New Braunfels location is currently planned to open towards the end of 2021.
Matt: That’s amazing news and impressive scale of expansion in just a few years. Would you can you provide some insight on your growth and success to-date?
Chris: Within the last two years our total sales have tripled. We are now up to thirteen full-time painters from just three a few years ago. We also have a project manager and sales staff.
A lot of the success we enjoy is due to the professionalism of our employees. We treat everyone’s home as if it were ours. We do great quality work at an affordable price. We have honesty, integrity, and transparency on our pricing. We have received a lot of feedback from customers stating how they appreciate our estimates are very transparent in what the cost of materials and labor are.
Matt: Looking back at where you started out in business years ago and then thinking about where you are today, what are some key lessons you have learned along the way?
Chris: One of the biggest lessons learned along this whole journey is that you should never give up during difficult times. Fighting through though times can drastically pay off in the end. Keep a positive mindset and push on. Our first two years in business were extremely difficult, we learned a lot and continued to push forward and go to work. Now in 2020, in the middle of a pandemic we are still expanding.
Matt: Do you have any suggestions for our readers when they are shopping around for professional painters?
Chris: What we strongly recommend is to always get at least 2-3 quotes. Customers need to be able to compare pricing and professionalism. We recommend going online to see the company’s past work and read reviews by their customers. The key is in knowing who to hire. Also, you should always ask about products being used and warranty of workmanship.
Matt: Chris thank you for your time today. I know you are busy, and we appreciate you sharing your success story and providing some helpful tips to our readers. Before we end, is there any last thoughts you want to share of anything we have not covered?
Chris: I have seen an overwhelming support from our local community, I cannot thank you all enough! We have grown and will continue to grow because of the strong support we have from our local customers. Helotes will always be home to our family and Business.
Have More Questions?
We hope you found this interview helpful and insightful. If you have more questions please reach out to Chris.
Magna Painting of Helotes, Local Veteran-Owned, magnapainting-Helotes.com
Previous work can be viewed on our FB Page: facebook.com/MagnaPaintingHelotes