VOL. 133 | NO. 134 | Friday, July 6, 2018
22-Year-Old Going After Piece of $29B Mattress Industry
K. Denise Jennings
Starting a mattress company isn’t on the to-do list of most teenagers, but Kayla Duerstock did just that. Duerstock, 22, in May relaunched Revived 365, the company that she started in her teens in hopes of grabbing a piece of the $29 billion mattress industry that has been disrupted by online mattress sales in recent years.
“Growing up with a dad in the retail furniture business I got to know the industry,” said Duerstock. “I realized how difficult it was to purchase a mattress, and I wanted to simplify and streamline the process.”
At her age she had friends moving out of their childhood homes for the first time. One of the first items people purchase is a mattress, so it seemed like a good product with which to start, she said.
Kayla Duerstock sits on one of the mattresses made by her company, Revived Mattress, inside Rocket Fuel in downtown Memphis. After nearly six years of research Duerstock and her father, Rob Duerstock, launched the bed-in-box company with their flagship product, the Revived365 mattress. (Daily News/Houston Cofield)
Duerstock was involved from the conception, trying out different mattresses and picking the elements of comfort and the specific materials that she wanted incorporated into her first mattress.
The Revived mattress that is currently available for direct order is 11 inches thick and of medium firmness. It’s made of base foam with vented latex in the middle and a top layer of memory foam incorporated with a cooling gel. The mattress is one inch thicker than the industry standard so it can sit on the floor, a pallet or box springs. It is available in queen for $799, twin for $499 and California king for $949 and is shipped directly the next day.
The Revived mattress is manufactured in central Mississippi, which makes it easier for Duerstock, who lives in Hernando, to work closely with manufacturers on the design and closely manage customer service. It also means that she doesn’t have to hold an expensive inventory.
“It was important to me to be able to work closely with the manufacturer on the specs for the mattress and to be able to offer great customer service,” said Duerstock, who’s proud that her company can contribute to the local and state economy.
Originally friends and family helped test the Revived mattress, but word-of-mouth is increasing the customer base. To increase awareness, Duerstock had a mattress shipped to celebrity designer Nikki Chu, who has promoted the mattress through her social-media platforms.
The marketing strategy for Revived 365 is primarily social media, blog posts and Internet search engine optimization strategies that help to educate prospective customers about the construction of the Revived mattress.
“We’ve talked about using traditional advertising, but we haven’t done that yet,” said Duerstock. “Our long-term goal is to compete with companies like Casper.”
Currently the Revived mattress is the only one available, but Duerstock is working on developing things like mattress toppers for dorm beds and other bedding-related products in the future.
Duerstock’s father and business partner, Rob Duerstock, points out that this isn’t the first company his daughter has started. When she was 10, she and her sister Emma started Cool Chicks Coffee, which is still in business, as part of a homeschool project.
“We were never going to pay for the girls’ cell phone bills and all of that, so they used that as a way to earn extra money,” he said. “They learned all about cash flow, inventory, advertising and profits and losses.”
Following the coffee company, Kayla had a photography business.
“Business is something I’ve always been passionate about.”
Next year, Duerstock will be a senior at Mississippi College and will graduate with a major in sports management. In addition to building a great mattress at an affordable price and supporting her state’s economy, she sees Revived 365 as an opportunity to diversify her career.
“If the job I truly wanted related to sports didn’t pay as much as I needed, I’m hoping (Revived 365) could help sustain me.”
For more information, visit www.revived365.com