RealLead is a company that provides an online platform for the real estate industry. It has been in business for over 10 years and has seen its fair share of success and failure. In this article, we explore how they have learned from their mistakes to grow into one of the largest real estate companies in Europe.
RealLead is a company that was founded in 2013. It has been through many ups and downs, but the founder has successfully turned it into one of the most successful companies in its industry.
Caroline Cummings, a LivePlan client, used to call herself a “entrepreneur in recovery” a few years ago. She knew she needed some time after her first software company failed in 2009, costing her a large amount of money, to figure out what she wanted to do next. “I’m an entrepreneur at heart, so I knew I’d go back into the startup game soon, but I needed some time to think things through.”
She was ready to try her hand at business again two years later, equipped with the sort of wisdom that only previous experience can offer. Chad Barczak and Jeff Kast approached her and asked if she wanted to join them in launching RealLead, a mobile marketing lead capture application and lead marketplace for buying and selling real estate leads. “The time was perfect,” she says, and now she’s the CEO of a new software firm, reliving the startup experience.
“Building and leading a team that works together to create amazing products that solve issues in the marketplace is my favorite aspect of having my own company. Something is amiss, in my opinion, if you are not learning something new every day. Complacency is the death knell for every business. This is one of the reasons I like working in a startup environment: there’s always something new to deal with, which keeps me and my team on our toes.”
One of the most difficult difficulties the RealLead team encountered during the startup phase was finding qualified programmers, which is becoming more difficult in Eugene, Oregon, where RealLead is located. Cummings observed that “finding the quality of software programmers we required early in the starting process” was difficult. They were able to get a top-notch programmer who rapidly built their main mobile product. “Only five and a half months after launching the business, we had clients utilizing our mobile marketing solutions. That was great since it allowed us to recruit more top-notch developers to our team.”
Cummings also emphasizes the need of “having the appropriate extended team in place” to assist with the tax and legal complexities that come with establishing and operating a company. She adds that the attorneys, accountants, bankers, and other experts you surround yourself with are just as essential as your on-staff team since “it may become overwhelming.”
RealLead was able to collect enough money early on to start and develop their business for a year. They released a live beta product in just nine and a half months, and they already have Realtor clients from all across the United States using their products. “Seeing our business strategy come to life and verify our market in such a short period of time is incredible,” she says.
“Our business plan has become the compass for the ship we’re building,” Caroline says of business planning. We didn’t start constructing the ship until our compass was perfected. I think that you may construct the most seaworthy ship in the world, but it isn’t worth much if you can’t put people on board, settle on a course, and have the means to effectively achieve your destination.”
The company’s short-term objectives are to secure another round of funding this summer and to recruit additional employees to keep up with their rapid development. Longer-term objectives include increasing their team to 40+ people, extending their products into foreign markets, and establishing a reputation as “the go-to for how to create and react to genuine leads.”
Between her two startup jobs, Cummings worked with the Oregon Entrepreneurs Network and the Eugene Area Chamber of Commerce, building and educating angel investor networks and implementing programs to assist new businesses. So you can very well believe her when she says, “There is no lack of ideas in the world – the challenge is bringing the product to market.” You’re halfway there if you believe in your concept, your market, and yourself.” “Starting your own company is not all peaches and cream – there are a fair number of sour patches along the way,” she says, adding that “having a solid foundation of mentors may help you make it over those powerful waves that will most definitely come your way.”
RealLead’s mobile marketing solutions for Realtors may be found here.
RealLead plans and manages their company using LivePlan, an online business planning tool, and handles customer assistance with Email Center Pro, an email management tool.
RealLead is a company that has been in business for over 20 years. Their hard lessons and success have lead to the company being the third largest direct mail marketing company in the world. Reference: life lessons everyone should know.
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