Olivia Paras – Being social media savvy to grow your RE biz

Meet Olivia Paras, a former preschool teacher who discovered her passion for real estate while buying her first home. Starting at a local brokerage, she realized the power of social media for attracting clients, now generating 75% of her business through daily posts. Olivia’s key advice is to stay focused on your own journey, saying, “Put up your blinders and don’t compare yourself, Focus on you, and your business will grow.”

To Learn more about Olivia , click here.

Show Notes

Welcome to the Agents Who Crush It In Real Estate podcast where you’ll hear the good, the bad and the ugly of how real estate agents overcame challenges and grew their business. Check out the Episode Notes at CrushItinRE.com/podcast. Here’s your host, Lindsay Favazza.

Olivia Paras: You got to share pieces of you with other people because that is how they’re going to trust you. But it needs to come from a genuine place. It cannot come from a place of selfishness where you’re just doing it to get business. Like, it needs to come from a truly genuine, I want to help people and I want them to see this part of my life because I don’t have it together, you don’t have it together. Like, let’s connect on that.

Lindsay Favazza: Welcome back to the Agents Who Crush It In Real Estate Podcast, where top tier realtors share their journey to success, giving you the insider tips and strategies to elevate your real estate game. I’m your host, Lindsay Favazza with Crush It In Real Estate. Please be sure to leave us a review if you listen and like what you hear today, and share it with another realtor that you think could benefit from hearing these great stories. Today, we’re thrilled to have with us a realtor who not only excels in the Massachusetts real estate market, but truly sets the bar for excellence.

With over $30 million in sales, a feature on HGTV, and the honor of being the number one agent in her office for both sales volume and transaction in 2023, Olivia Paras has proven that dedication and expertise lead to remarkable results. She’s a proud platinum member of the Realtors Association Top Producer Club, and has been mastering the art of buying and selling for over five years. Today, she’s here to share her story, her strategies, and maybe a few secrets to her astounding success. Olivia, welcome to the podcast today.

Olivia Paras: Hi, thanks for having me.

Lindsay Favazza: Did we nail it?

Olivia Paras: Nailed it. That was so good.

Lindsay Favazza Favazza: We’re gonna leave this part in too then.

Olivia Paras: That was so good.

Lindsay Favazza Favazza: I love that. I always try to, like, make you guys shine, and I’m just always like, did I do it? Did I do it okay?

Olivia Paras: I was like, who is this girl? I want to know her.

Lindsay Favazza Favazza: Like, who do you have on the podcast today? It is all you, my friend. I’ve been watching your social media now for a while and I’m just so impressed. And on the screen, I usually wait till the end to say this, but I really want people to take a peek at your page because I think that they can-

Olivia Paras: Thanks.

Lindsay Favazza Favazza: -learn a lot from you. And we’ll dive into that a little bit in, you know, a couple- a couple minutes here. But I want to go back in the way back machine and I want you to take us back five years ago. Why did you get into real estate? What were you doing before, and what got you here?

Olivia Paras: Yeah. So before real estate, I was a preschool teacher. I was hired, um, by a local elementary school and I knew my position was only gonna be for two years. And then after the two years, I was eliminated. They didn’t have enough kids to support both teachers. Um, and I was kind of left at this, like, crossroad. I knew I wasn’t happy. I wasn’t fulfilled. There was, like, something inside of me that was like, there’s more out there for you. Um, but I had, like, my dad and my family saying, you know, stay with, you know, the steady job, with the–

Lindsay Favazza Favazza: Did you go to school- did you go to school to be a teacher?

Olivia Paras: I did. I went to school to be a teacher. I passed all my MTELs. I’m actually technically still licensed. Um, I can teach second grade, up to second grade in the state of Massachusetts. Um, so there was a lot of work to get licensed. And then after it all, I just wasn’t happy. Um, so at the time when this was all happening, we had just bought our house and I really liked the process of it. I’ve always really liked homes and-and interior design, and-and all that stuff. Um, and I kind of pitched the idea to my husband. And I was like, you know, I was like, what if I go into real estate? Like, that– I know that sounds kind of crazy, but– and he was like, you should do it, 100%. Like-

Lindsay Favazza Favazza: That’s awesome.

Olivia Paras: -he was super supportive. And it just kind of worked out. I never ended up having to– so I-I left teaching, um, luckily, and I was just telling somebody this the other day, and I have, like, no shame with it. So they let me go. So I was able to collect unemployment. So what I did was I collected unemployment, um, for six months, and that gave me the time to get my real estate license.

Lindsay Favazza Favazza: Right.

Olivia Paras: And basically exactly when my unemployment ran out was when my first check came from the first house that I closed. It-it was almost exact timing. And from there, I never had to get another part-time job, and the closings just kind of continued to follow. So yeah.

Lindsay Favazza Favazza: I mean, it’s a bummer that you got laid off, but it kind of-

Olivia Paras: Yeah.

Lindsay Favazza Favazza: -warped the path for you to do what you actually really would love to do. So.

Olivia Paras: Yeah, yeah, exactly. And it was- it was a really tough decision because there were a lot of unknowns. I didn’t really, um, have any friends, like, in real estate, so it wasn’t even like someone like, hey, you know, you should come do this. It was really kind of like a very foreign concept. Um, and it was just like, we bought a house. I thought it was cool. Hey, maybe I could do this.

Lindsay Favazza Favazza: I like houses.

Olivia Paras: Yeah, right? Like, so yeah, that’s kind of how it all–

Lindsay Favazza Favazza: You got started. And you got into the business. You got your first deal. Your unemployment stops, but now you have that first check. So you’re like, well, all right, if these keep coming, then I should be okay. So-

Olivia Paras: Yeah.

Lindsay Favazza Favazza: -what happened after that? How did, you know, how did it transition? Did you– like, your sphere really show up for you, or like what happened that really helped you to get to that next level?

Olivia Paras: Um, yeah. So at the time, um– and I hope it’s okay to say, like, brokerages. At the time I-

Lindsay Favazza Favazza: Of course.

Olivia Paras: -was with Keller Williams. And I was so glad I started there because they have such an amazing training program. And-

Lindsay Favazza Favazza: Yep.

Olivia Paras: -um, so that was great. But I did feel like– so I had my first closing, um, and I had like a couple things in the works, but it definitely wasn’t like, boom, overnight.

Lindsay Favazza Favazza: Mm-hmm.

Olivia Paras: Um, it very much was like, okay, I had my first closing, then it was a couple months. I’m like, oh, you know, I’m kinda stretching this to the end. Like, I kinda got to do something here. Um, and then I ended up switching brokerages. I went to a more local, um, brokerage. And in– I live in, um, the Athol Orange area. So I joined a smaller brokerage and that was when my business, like, really took off. Um, my broker was very instrumental in helping me, you know, get my name out there or, you know, where I necessarily wouldn’t have listings, she would co list things with me.

So it would technically be in my name and she would help me that way. Um, so I think that was a huge catalyst to kind of bumping my business up. Um, and I think a lot of people think that, I don’t know, they need to go bigger, and sometimes you just need to go smaller and really like h– like, be in your community more and, like, with your sphere. And that allowed me to like really do things in my community, really touch base with the people who I’m, you know, I’m seeing at the grocery store, um, versus I was driving, you know, 45 minutes to an office where I didn’t necessarily know the people in that community.

Lindsay Favazza Favazza: Yup. Absolutely.

Olivia Paras: So yeah.

Lindsay Favazza Favazza: And I think really it comes down to every situation is going to be different, but if you feel like you need to make a switch, or if you feel like it isn’t the right fit, then, like go with-

Olivia Paras: Yeah.

Lindsay Favazza Favazza: -your gut. Like, at the end of-

Olivia Paras: Yeah.

Lindsay Favazza Favazza: -the day, the grass could be greener and you might be able to find something that clicks better for you. It sounds like you didn’t just get a broker, you got a mentor.

Olivia Paras: Yeah. And-and that was, I think a huge piece of it. She truly, um, like at the time, she truly wanted our businesses– and she would tell this to us all the time. ‘Cause she was actively selling at the time, and she still is. Um, but she wanted our businesses to be bigger than her. Um, which I just felt was– it was very generous and she would– I mean she would share business all the time, and she wouldn’t ask for, you know, anything in return. So that was a huge, um, piece to my business.

Lindsay Favazza Favazza: Yeah. That’s great. So then, how did it kind of morph from there? So now you’ve gotten your business off the ground, kind of what were some of maybe the struggles or challenges that you were facing back then?

Olivia Paras: Um, I think it was just, the struggle is always who’s gonna be my next client or-or like who, you know, finding-

Lindsay Favazza Favazza: Where’s it coming from?

Olivia Paras: -that business.

Lindsay Favazza Favazza: Yeah.

Olivia Paras: Yeah. Where is it gonna come from? Um, and so that kind of helped me get my feet off the ground. And then from there it was kind of like a snowball effect. Um, social media has played a huge, um, role in my business. Um, and it was– that has been the one thing I’ve tried to remain consistent with acro– you know, over the years. Even, I remember taking so much time to make, you know, these social media posts, you know, back five years ago.

Um, but the consistency, like, that was what really helped. And then people in my community would see my signs and, um– but it-it hasn’t been easy. It’s definitely not, um, like this overnight thing. Um, it takes years and years to build. And even once you’re established, I mean, five years into it, I still have moments– like last week was my hardest, probably my hardest week in real estate I’ve ever had. Like-

Lindsay Favazza Favazza: Wow.

Olivia Paras: -cried four times.

Lindsay Favazza Favazza: Yeah.

Olivia Paras: Like, it was tough.

Lindsay Favazza Favazza: Not happy tears.

Olivia Paras: Not happy tears. No, it wasn’t like, ooh, yeah. No, it was like, Oh my God.

Lindsay Favazza Favazza: And, I mean, this is the time of year that if you could make it through now, you know, like if you can make-

Olivia Paras: Yeah.

Lindsay Favazza Favazza: -it through what we’re going through now, I feel like, uh, you know, business will take off for you. So, you know.

Olivia Paras: And right now it’s crazy. I mean-

Lindsay Favazza Favazza: It is crazy.

Olivia Paras: -I feel like this spring market has not been a typical spring market. Um, it’s been super, super challenging. Yeah.

Lindsay Favazza Favazza: Yep. Um, but we’ll get to the other side, ’cause that is-

Olivia Paras: Yeah.

Lindsay Favazza: -how this business is. There’s always those ebbs and flows, and anyone who’s, like, had more than 20 years in the business looks at this time as like, okay, buckle up ’cause we’re gonna ride this wave until it goes back up again. But-

Olivia Paras: Yeah.

Lindsay Favazza: -people who have been in the business only the five years, they saw 2020 and 2021, and 2022 when things are-

Olivia Paras: Yeah.

Lindsay Favazza: -flying up and so, and it was so easy. And I think everyone, even the experience, people kinda got used to that. And it’s hard-

Olivia Paras: Yeah.

Lindsay Favazza: -to kind of make that transition back into a kind of a slower market, so it’s a challenge.

Olivia Paras: Yeah, 100%.

Lindsay Favazza: So I want to talk about your social media for sure because I think-

Olivia Paras: Yeah.

Lindsay Favazza: -you know, a lot of agents struggle with many things when it comes to social media. In my experience of talking to agents, I’m constantly having to say don’t worry about how you look. Don’t worry about how you sound. Don’t get hung up on that. It’s worth it in the end. Just, I always tell people post and don’t look at it. If it’s gonna bother you enough that you’re gonna want to take it down, just post it and don’t look at it ’cause what– it’s not for you, it’s for them. So-

Olivia Paras: Yeah.

Lindsay Favazza: -how do you kind of formulate a strategy, and how do– let’s start with that first piece of social media marketing, which is like, how do you get out of your own way, right? How do you have the confidence to, like, go out there and put yourself out there like that even when your husband’s telling you, like, why the heck are you putting everything out there, right?

Olivia Paras: [chuckles] Yeah. According to my husband, I put way too much out there for the world though.

Lindsay Favazza: How do you handle that? Like, how do you overcome that and how do you say nope, I’m doing it anyway, and why?

Olivia Paras: Yeah. So when I first started- so when I first started in real estate, I would say the first probably three-ish years, I very much, like, every single thing I wanted to put out there was like positive, perfect. Like, hey, look at this perfect thing I just did. Hey, look at this beautiful house. Hey, look at my perfect life. Like, I’m not struggling over here. And then finally it was like the beginning of last year, it was the beginning of 2023, I was like, I’m not doing this anymore.

At that point, well, now I’m a mom, my house is a mess. I’m barely keeping it together. I’m like, I’m done kind of trying to wrap this in a bow and present this, like, perfect image to people when I’m not. Like, my life is far from that. Um, so I really started putting out, like, more relatable things because that’s what I was going through. Like, hey, look at my living room, it’s a disaster. Like, I just signed a new listing, but like-

Lindsay Favazza: Boys everywhere.

Olivia Paras: -I don’t have time to clean my house. So that was really like, I started going in that direction, or-or like my reels and stuff, like, it-it doesn’t have to be perfect.

Lindsay Favazza: It was probably freeing. It was-

Olivia Paras: Yeah, yeah.

Lindsay Favazza: -probably freeing for you because you were trying so hard to keep up. There was probably a million things that you could have posted that you didn’t because it wasn’t perfect.

Olivia Paras: Yeah. And I– and it’s nice because I’ve been able to connect with so many other people. Like, they’ll message me and be like, girl, same. My house is a mess. And then I don’t feel so alone.

Lindsay Favazza: Exactly.

Olivia Paras: So it’s been nice from a business standpoint, but also like a personal standpoint, like connecting with other people and just like, hey, we’re not perfect. We’re just trying to figure this out, you know, every day. So yeah.

Lindsay Favazza: So, why-why is it important for you to be on social? Why do you think, you know, why do you think that it’s important for you as a realtor to put yourself out there?

Olivia Paras: I mean, that’s where I would say at least 75% of my business comes from. Um, that’s where-where it all comes from is, um, you know, a lot of it is-is my sphere and like word of mouth, but a lot- a lot of it is people that I already know but they’re seeing my face continuously on-on social media, and that they’re connecting that with real estate.

Lindsay Favazza: Yeah.

Olivia Paras: Whereas if I wasn’t posting or they weren’t seeing it, sure they know me, they know I’m a real estate agent but they probably would have chosen somebody else. Because that– you know, it’s a nice organic way to stay top of mind without continuously reaching out to people in this businessy sales pitchy way like, hey, don’t forget about me. Like, I would love to help you.

Lindsay Favazza: Mm-hmm.

Olivia Paras: Um, and it’s free.

Lindsay Favazza: Yeah. I mean it-it-it reminds me of that quote, like, choose your hard, right? So like, yeah, people think it’s hard to post on social and to put themselves out there and all of that, but then again, like, how do you get to know anybody then? Like, how do they get to know you? Like, then you have to go to every community event, and you have to be at every sports thing for your kids.

Olivia Paras: Yeah.

Lindsay Favazza: And you have to do all these things in order to get this face time that you could easily get with a couple videos a week on your social media page, you know.

Olivia Paras: 100%.

Lindsay Favazza: So it’s like, choose that hard. Like, what is it that you wanna do? How are you gonna get your name out there then? If you don’t wanna do-

Olivia Paras: Yeah.

Lindsay Favazza: -this, then how many postcards do you have to send to get that same- that same return, you know?

Olivia Paras: Yeah. And I don’t know if everybody knows, but the prices of stamps are going up. So like–

Lindsay Favazza: Way too much. Way too much.

Olivia Paras: It’s-it’s so expensive.

Lindsay Favazza: Do you ever boost or do anything like that on a video, or do you just let it all be organic?

Olivia Paras: I don’t. Yeah, I don’t. Um-

Lindsay Favazza: Awesome.

Olivia Paras: -I just– and it really has been– like the last two weeks, I’ve seen a lot more views on my reels, um, than I ever have. Like, this last one I posted, it was just a b-roll– I’ve been really trying to, like, take advantage of the whole b-roll thing.

Lindsay Favazza: Yeah.

Olivia Paras: I was outside with my kids. My– they wanted to ride their bikes, and I was like, sure, let’s go outside. My husband, he works midnight so he was sleeping at the time.

Lindsay Favazza: Mm-hmm.

Olivia Paras: So I had them, um, for the day. I was like, sure, let’s go outside. We’re outside with the dog. I set up my tripod and I literally grabbed one of my signs out of my car, walked it to my shed, had the video of it. And then I just put, you know, um, I put what my sales were at the time last year versus this year. And it has over 12,000 views. And I didn’t boost it or– I just chose like a trending audio. Um, and that was it. Like, it was– it took me, like, five minutes to make.

Lindsay Favazza: Mm-hmm.

Olivia Paras: And that was it.

Lindsay Favazza: And–

Olivia Paras: So it’s stuff like that that’s– I feel like really been helping.

Lindsay Favazza: Yeah, it makes it easier too when it’s something that’s kind of easy and off the cuff. So how do you come up with these ideas? Do you have like– do you have other pages that you follow to get ideas from? Is it all just, like, coming from your head? Like, what-what– how do you generate the ideas to-to what you do on-on your reels?

Olivia Paras: It’s a little bit of both. Like, I do– I definitely follow a lot of other realtors, or like, um, realtors who are in kind of bigger cities, I’ll notice that, you know, they’ll have trends first and then it will kind of trickle down to, like, our smaller towns.

Lindsay Favazza: Yeah.

Olivia Paras: So I do follow, like, a lot of realtors who are in bigger cities. Um, so it’s like a combination. Like if they posted something, I’ll kind of do a variation of it. Um, or then sometimes I’ll just have a random, like, real idea that will come to me and I’ll immediately write it down. You have to write it down because you will forget.

Lindsay Favazza: Mm-hmm.

Olivia Paras: Like I have learned that you will forget.

Lindsay Favazza: Yup.

Olivia Paras: So–

Lindsay Favazza: You think of them, like, either in the shower or you think of them right before you go to bed? Or like-

Olivia Paras: Yeah. That’s exactly right.

Lindsay Favazza: -quickly in-between appointments or something?

Olivia Paras: I keep a whole list in my notes. Um, and I keep it as detailed as possible. Like, this is what I wanna say word for word. Um, because I will forget everything as far as content ideas. So if you keep that list, then you can go back to it in the moments that you’re feeling a little uninspired, because I definitely go through, um, weeks where I’m like, you know, I’m just not feeling like anything. I can’t really think of something. So I’ll go back to those notes-

Lindsay Favazza: Yeah.

Olivia Paras: -and try to reference that.

Lindsay Favazza: Do you use Chat or any kind of AI to help you kind of craft messaging? Or do you use like Canva to make things pretty? What kind of programs and things do you use to help you?

Olivia Paras: Yeah, I use Canva. Um, I use, uh, CapCut a lot. So I try to-

Lindsay Favazza: Mm-hmm.

Olivia Paras: -I try to use CapCut sparingly because Instagram really wants you to be editing the reels in the Instagram app.

Lindsay Favazza: Yep. Yep.

Olivia Paras: Um, and like, all their metrics and stuff is– the algorithm is totally about to change, which is great for, like, smaller creators.

Lindsay Favazza: Mm-hmm. Yeah.

Olivia Paras: Um, it’s gonna give us a-a better chance to have our-our content, I guess, seen. I-I don’t–

Lindsay Favazza: Yeah.

Olivia Paras: It’s weird saying it from like a content creator standpoint. Um, [crosstalk] yeah, so I– y-yeah. It’s-it’s weird to say it that way but, um, CapCut I use for videos, um, because Instagram is fairly basic as far as what you can do-

Lindsay Favazza: Yeah.

Olivia Paras: -um, to like cut your reel and stuff like that. So CapCut’s a big help. Canva. Um, I do use ChatGPT, um, but not like– I probably don’t use it to its full potential. We probably all don’t. Um, but sometimes I’ll use it if I need, like, caption ideas or something like that, or like, I’m-I’m– I see something that’s worded some way and I don’t wanna copy it and I need to, like, try and find a different way to word it.

Lindsay Favazza: Yep. Yep.

Olivia Paras: So I’ll use it more as like a secondary helper versus like relying solely on it.

Lindsay Favazza: Yeah, we rely a lot on it. Because it’s just it helps to generate that idea. It’s like you said, when you kind of get dry it definitely can give you that jolt-

Olivia Paras: Yeah.

Lindsay Favazza: -like, information. So I– we definitely use it a lot. But, um, but I think it’s good that like– and that’s why a lot of your reels are gonna do so well. It’s ’cause they’re organically something that you are into and that you want. It’s not an AI telling you what to post about. You know what I mean? And telling you how to say it. So even if you– even if you’re out there and you do use one of those things, please reword it. Please make it your own. Because otherwise-

Olivia Paras: Yeah.

Lindsay Favazza: -it’s gonna sound like a robot. You know?

Olivia Paras: Yeah. Yeah. And Instagram is really going to cra-crack down on people who are copying. I just saw this the other day. People who are copying, like, word for word the same reel. They’re gonna then push the original creators out to more people, and whoever is copying, their-their content’s gonna be hidden. So-

Lindsay Favazza: Then it’s gonna hurt all your [crosstalk]

Olivia Paras: -it’s gonna be good.

Lindsay Favazza: Not just the ones that you copied. So, yeah. Are you–

Olivia Paras: I’m excited about that though.

Lindsay Favazza: Are you doing anything on TikTok? Are you doing anything on any other platforms, YouTube shorts, or anything like that? Or is it strictly only Instagram at this point?

Olivia Paras: It’s only Instagram. I do– I would love to get into YouTube more. Um, it has more been like a time thing. Like, I-I really need to set aside time to, like, learn what I’m doing, um, get the hang of it. Because I-I don’t actually– I don’t use it anyways. Um, so I would really have to kind of get the feel for it. And I don’t use TikTok. I probably should. Um, but the idea, I really-

Lindsay Favazza: [crosstalk] now hold off.

Olivia Paras: -just use Instagram and Facebook.

Lindsay Favazza: Now hold off. ‘Cause if it’s gone, you don’t wanna be–

Olivia Paras: Oh, that’s true. Yeah. Yeah.

Lindsay Favazza: So what you’re- what you’re doing is working, and that’s great. And– but a lot of agents, I think, ask, you know, and wanna know, well, if I do it here, do I have to put it on all these places? If you’re not on those places and you’re not actively moving those places, then now you have to-

Olivia Paras: No.

Lindsay Favazza: -teach yourself a whole new thing and then post on it. Like, that’s not- that’s not gonna be conducive to what– it’s not gonna fit comfortably within your plan, you know?

Olivia Paras: No. No, and I think people should just stick with, you know, if Instagram and Facebook, like if that feels doable for you, then just do that. Like, you don’t have to go overboard. The other things will come. You’ll get more comfortable with Instagram and Facebook, and then you can start branching into, like, YouTube or, you know, it doesn’t have to be this like all or nothing kind of do it in pieces.

Lindsay Favazza: Yeah.

Olivia Paras: Yeah.

Lindsay Favazza: And you have to be willing to pivot, you know?

Olivia Paras: Yeah.

Lindsay Favazza: What if something happened to TikTok and it now goes away? Now you’ve got to go back and do it somewhere else. I mean, it’s-it’s a lot of work and, you know, you got to do it where you’re gonna feel most comfortable so that you can, you know, lean into it.

Olivia Paras: Yeah.

Lindsay Favazza: ‘Cause that’s what I’m hearing you say, you have to be consistent. So from a consistency standpoint, how often do you think you’re posting on social about real estate or in general, you know, personal stuff too?

Olivia Paras: Um, so real estate is almost every day, like seven days a week. Um, reels, I will– I’ve– ’cause they’ve come out with something that said now three to five times a week is, like, ideal. Um, so I really will only stick to like a Monday through Friday. Sometimes I won’t even post on Friday, like, a reel. And I’ve been trying something new where I, like, only post reels and I’m not doing stagnant posts on Instagram. Um, so that’s like kind of a little trial phase. I’m still-

Lindsay Favazza: Testing how–

Olivia Paras: -seeing how I like that. Yeah.

Lindsay Favazza: Yeah.

Olivia Paras: Um, but social media, so Facebook, Instagram, almost every day of the week, I either do like a quick story, like, hey, showing a house. And then I’ll fill it with a bunch of other personal stuff. So it’s not just, you know, my friends listening to me do real estate all day or, like, the agents who are following me for real estate, they’re not just hearing about my kids all day. So it’s-

Lindsay Favazza: Yeah. A–

Olivia Paras: -it’s finding that balance that’s really hard. It’s really, really difficult. And you’re gonna lose followers and people are not gonna wanna see it, but that’s just part of the process. Um, and finding that balance, you get it as time goes on. But I do try to- try to have a good mix so both sides of it are happy and wanting to-

Lindsay Favazza: Yeah.

Olivia Paras: -stay engaged or, you know, click on my stories.

Lindsay Favazza: Yeah, for sure. Um, as far as leads go, how long was it before– while you were- you were doing consistently, putting stuff out on social, how long was it before you got a lead? ‘Cause there’s probably people listening or watching as well that are s-sitting there and talking to themselves, thinking like, I haven’t gotten any leads and I’ve been doing this for six months, and I post like once a week, you know? So like, I think there’s-

Olivia Paras: Yeah.

Lindsay Favazza: -also an expectation of like, okay, well, if I do this e– three to four a week what’s gonna-

Olivia Paras: Yeah.

Lindsay Favazza: -come to me, you know? So how do you– like, what are your thoughts on that? About getting leads from it?

Olivia Paras: Yeah. I think, so when I started in real estate, my, um, office manager at the time told me we could expect to not receive our first paycheck for six months. And that was true almost to the day for me. I feel like that is so different in today’s market where we are flooded with– there’s so many other agents than there was when I first started. Um, so that kind of like time frame is, it’s a little bit more now, I feel like. And even with social media, I mean you’re gonna have to be consistent for months.

And I feel like that’s why a lot of people kind of come into the business and exit so quickly is, you know, they do things for even a few months and it’s like, okay, I haven’t- I haven’t gotten anything from this. You know, that must mean it’s not gonna work out for me. And you just have to stay with it a little bit longer. Things are a lot tougher in this market than they were, you know, five years ago when I joined. Um, and we’re headed, I think, maybe to even harder places. I don’t know. It’s always kind of this unknown.

Lindsay Favazza: Yeah.

Olivia Paras: So yeah.

Lindsay Favazza: What other things do you do? What-what other pieces are in your marketing mix? Um, you know, even if it’s just like being a part of events or like sponsoring, you know, your child’s teams. Or like what-what other things do you, um, prioritize for your marketing?

Olivia Paras: I do try to do as much stuff as I can in the community as possible. I do have young kids. Um, so this year was the first year, um, that I sponsored a team for the YMCA. So I’m like a YMCA sponsor. Um, I got to fill out the tee-ball form. I’m going to be a tee-ball sponsor. You reminded me. I got to do that.

Lindsay Favazza: My daughter started her tee-ball and, oh my God, it is the funniest thing I’ve ever seen in my entire–

Olivia Paras: It’s hilarious, right? Oh my gosh. My son, we had his–

Lindsay Favazza: It was a comedy show. All the- all the parents were just sitting there laughing our butts off. Like, the kids are like-

Olivia Paras: It is–

Lindsay Favazza: -dancing in the outfield.

Olivia Paras: It’s good entertainment at the very least.

Lindsay Favazza: It is. Good entertainment.

Olivia Paras: My son was building sandcastles in the infield and I was like, you know what? That’s fine. Like, he’s happy. We’re just going to go with it.

Lindsay Favazza: My husband’s like a big– my husband used to play softball and stuff. So he’s like a big– you know, love sports. So he’s watching her swing the bat five times and miss on the tee. And then he was, like, shaking his head and I’m like, Mike, she’s going to be six. And then she finally hits the ball and the coach was like, run. And she looks at him and then she looks at us like, am I supposed to run? And Mike’s like screaming at her. It was– it is the funniest thing I’ve ever seen. So, enjoy that. It’s gonna be great.

Olivia Paras: Yeah. Yeah. Yeah. It’s a chaos, but–

Lindsay Favazza: Yeah.

Olivia Paras: Yeah. So I try to do stuff like that. I did– um, I’ll do just like random– um, I did a giveaway for Valentine’s day which was, like, wildly successful.

Lindsay Favazza: Yeah.

Olivia Paras: Um, it had like–

Lindsay Favazza: I love these off holidays. Everybody likes doing stuff for like Christmas or like Thanksgiving, but like, the off holidays are the ones that actually– ’cause no one else is doing anything for them during those–

Olivia Paras: Yeah.

Lindsay Favazza: You know?

Olivia Paras: Yeah.

Lindsay Favazza: I love that.

Olivia Paras: I-I wanted to do one for Mother’s Day and I just didn’t get a chance to. Things have been kind of crazy. But– um, and then what else? What else do I do? Um-

Lindsay Favazza: Postcards–

Olivia Paras: -I did like random gift cards of– um, for, uh Thanksgiving.

Lindsay Favazza: Mm-hmm.

Olivia Paras: I went and bought, I think it was eight, six or eight $200 gift cards to, like, our local grocery store. And I put it on Facebook and I just said, hey, listen, if you know a family in need, I want to help them. Please message me. And I had so many people reach out, um, to the point that I had to go and buy even more to, like, help these people.

Lindsay Favazza: Oh, wow.

Olivia Paras: So that was–

Lindsay Favazza: That’s so cool.

Olivia Paras: So it’s like stuff like that that I’ve really been trying. Like, as your business grows, you’re then able to give back even more. Um, so you can’t necessarily start off right away doing that thing– do-doing those things because funds are tight. And, you know, maybe you’re not having consistent closings. But as your business grows and as my business grows, I want to give as much back to my community as possible, because-

Lindsay Favazza: I love that.

Olivia Paras: -this is where I live. This is where I’ve always lived. I’ve never lived anywhere else. I love it here. So yeah.

Lindsay Favazza: Yeah. Do you– like, from a budgeting for marketing and those types of expenses, do you kind of in your head, at least, like, peel off, okay, on this closing, I’m gonna take this percent and put it in an account so that I can have it for that kind of stuff? Or is it really just come down to like when an opportunity arises, you just make it happen?

Olivia Paras: Yeah, I wish I could say like I was as organized as that, but it is a little willy nilly. It’s like, oh yeah, let’s do that. Oh, let’s do this. I wish I-

Lindsay Favazza: Yeah.

Olivia Paras: -like, could keep it to a percentage. Um, but I-I track other things. So it’s not like-

Lindsay Favazza: Yeah.

Olivia Paras: -it’s not like I’m totally, you know, just have marketing organization that–

Lindsay Favazza: Having any kind of marketing budget is like pretty much the last thing that a lot of people have.

Olivia Paras: Yeah.

Lindsay Favazza: Because, you know, it’s just not something that people think about, but i–

Olivia Paras: Yeah.

Lindsay Favazza: And it’s also not super necessary if you’re at least doing the things that will work for you, which is social media is free. You don’t need money to do that.

Olivia Paras: Yeah.

Lindsay Favazza: So, you know, you just got to lean in on the things that work for you.

Olivia Paras: Yeah. Yeah. And there may be a time where it comes where I need to kind of come up with a better system for it. But right now, I mean, your business evolve so much and it’s like, I would– I don’t know, I’m just going to leave it open and what I can do, I’ll do. And I don’t have to kind of put constraints on it, I guess. Maybe someday I will track it better, but–

Lindsay Favazza: No, I love that. So, you know, where do you– what are your goals? What do you see yourself– you know, obviously probably your goal this year is just to get through this year, ’cause it’s a tough one.

Olivia Paras: Yeah.

Lindsay Favazza: Um, but what do you see for yourself in the future for real estate? What– where-where are you headed?

Olivia Paras: I-I don’t know for sure. Um, I think a lot of agents, like the next step will probably be like, start a team or like do something like that. And as of right now, I-I actually truthfully have no desire to do that. I have no desire to start a team. I have no desire to have other agents-

Lindsay Favazza: problems. Yeah.

Olivia Paras: -work under me. Or-or like, I have no desire to do that. Um, I do want to get my broker’s license. Um, and what I do with that, I’m not quite sure, but I know I want to get my broker’s license. I want to get licensed in New Hampshire. Up until like recently, I didn’t see a need for it. And then this year, I feel like so many people are like, I want to go to New Hampshire, and I’ve missed out on a lot of opportunity.

Lindsay Favazza: Yeah.

Olivia Paras: So that will probably be on the horizon next, but I don’t really know.

Lindsay Favazza: I mean, those are two really good things. [crosstalk] you have it and then you’re prepared for whatever that next step is. And then yeah, getting licensed in the new states that-that you can cover. I think that that’s huge. That’s awesome goals to have.

Olivia Paras: Yeah. Yeah. Yeah. And–

Lindsay Favazza: I love that. So–

Olivia Paras: And then we’ll see- we’ll see how it goes from there. I mean, as real estate agents, I feel like we kinda don’t really have a solid plan. So, I’m like, I don’t know what the future holds.

Lindsay Favazza: [crosstalk] Yeah. Yeah.

Olivia Paras: Yeah.

Lindsay Favazza: So I’m down to my last question. It always makes me sad ’cause I can’t believe that 30 minutes has just flown by. Um, but this has been awesome and you’ve provided so much awesome value for our audience. But what would be that last piece of advice? So let’s say there’s someone on here that maybe they’ve been in the business for five years too. Um, and they haven’t gotten to the level of, you know, sales and, um, you know, success that you’ve gotten to. What advice would you give them, um, in order to kinda get to that next level?

Olivia Paras: My biggest piece of advice is like put your blinders up. Like, it is so easy in this industry to look at what other people are doing, to look at this person, to look at this person and compare yourself. Um, but everyone’s in a different scenario. Like, you need to put your blinders up and do what’s going to make sense for your business. Don’t be doing other things for other people. Um, and really just focus on you. If you focus on you, your business will grow. Like, it-it will. You cannot– the more effort and energy you give to other people and worrying about what other people are gonna do, it’s going to negatively affect your business. And you need to kind of just like h– like, speak to the universe, you know. Like–

Lindsay Favazza: Yeah. Manifest.

Olivia Paras: It’s gonna be fine. It’s gonna work out. You need to be consistent in the things that you do. And you don’t have to choose a million things, but choose a couple and stay consistent with it, and don’t worry about what anybody else is doing.

Lindsay Favazza: I love that.

Olivia Paras: That’s like my biggest piece of advice, because this industry is great, but it’s so competitive.

Lindsay Favazza: Yep.

Olivia Paras: Um, and I think it’s really important for us to focus on ourselves and not tie our self-worth to how much business we’re doing or what volume, you know, we’re doing. Those are not, you know, synonymous.

Lindsay Favazza: And there are ebbs and flows. That is how it goes.

Olivia Paras: It is. Yeah.

Lindsay Favazza: [crosstalk] that a little saying. Um, that is how this business goes. So I know this time of year, I hear from a lot of agents who have gotten to the point where they’re like, but wait, it’s now May and my business isn’t doing right now what it did last year. So even with the blinders on where they’re only focusing on themselves, they’re comparing themselves to a previous version, but it’s a different market. And there’s [crosstalk]

Olivia Paras: There’s a different market. Mm-hmm.

Lindsay Favazza: And you know- you know, have some faith in yourself, but also, like, be kind to yourself.

Olivia Paras: Yeah. Yeah.

Lindsay Favazza: And then, you know, maybe take a deep look at what it is that you’ve done differently this year. Maybe there is something that you could do different. It’s like- it’s like being on a diet, you know. Look at what you’ve been eating. Have you actually been doing all the things you’re supposed to do? Have you been consistently posting on social media? Or did you give up a little bit of that? And if you did, then get back on it, you know, and-and just be honest with yourself and look at it. I think that is such great advice. And especially from you that is someone that is, like, walking the walk and doing it and, you know-

Olivia Paras: Yeah.

Lindsay Favazza: -focusing on, you know, what they can do next. And as much as it pains me now that I, like, know you and how sweet you are, it pains me to hear that you’ve been crying so much. So stop doing that. Um, [crosstalk]–

Olivia Paras: I’m so dramatic. This week will be better.

Lindsay Favazza: That’s what agents do. They get to that point where they just kind of break. So understand that everyone has those times too. Like-

Olivia Paras: Yeah.

Lindsay Favazza: -even a rock star like Olivia also has those times.

Olivia Paras: Even the top producers. Like, we have weeks that we’re like, is this worth it? It is. And it’s a just a low moment and you’re gonna– like there’s gonna be so many other highs that are going to cancel out those low moments.

Lindsay Favazza: Yes.

Olivia Paras: Um, but it does, it gives you a great chance to look at your business. Like this– starting this week, I had a low point this week. I’m like, okay, we’re getting right back into it. It’s Monday. Like, what are we doing? Who are we calling? Who are we touching base with? Like, what do I need to do to kind of p-pick it up? Because I had a low week, now we’re gonna make this a high week.

Lindsay Favazza: Yeah.

Olivia Paras: Yeah.

Lindsay Favazza: Control what you can control and just move forward.

Olivia Paras: Yeah. Yeah.

Lindsay Favazza: I love it.

Olivia Paras: Yeah.

Lindsay Favazza: Olivia, this has been an absolute joy. I knew it was going to be just because, you know, here’s a-a case of, like, your social media. I felt like I knew you even though we literally had only emailed or like messaged. [

Olivia Paras: Yeah. That’s awesome though. Good.

Lindsay Favazza: I felt like I knew you because I watch your videos all the time. So that’s the kind of power that there is in social media. And I hope that, you know, people listening today got that from you. Because no matter how many times I tell them to do more of social media and do more video, they don’t listen to me. So hopefully they’ll listen to you.

Olivia: Yeah. And then, like, you have to be okay with, like, sharing– you don’t have to share like the, you know, the super details, but like, you got to share pieces of you with other people, because that is how they’re going to trust you. But it needs to come from a genuine place. It cannot come from a place of selfishness where you’re just doing it to get business. Like, it needs to come from a truly genuine, I want to help people and I want them to see this part of my life because I don’t have it together, you don’t have it together. Like, let’s connect on that.

Lindsay Favazza Favazza: We’re together not having it together. It’s great.

Olivia Paras: Yeah, exactly. That’s per– a perfect way to say it. Yep.

Lindsay Favazza Favazza: I love it. Well, thank you, Olivia, so much. And thank you to all of our listeners and watchers on YouTube. I don’t wanna forget about you guys. We really appreciate it. And like I said in the intro, please share with another realtor so that they can get the same great tips that Olivia shared today. Um, and then also we would love it if you would give us any kind of review on wherever you get your podcast. That would be a huge help to help the podcast grow. So we actually– this is the first time I’m recording after we found out that we made the top 100 podcasts for real estate, which I’m pretty proud about. So–

Olivia Paras: Amazing.

Lindsay Favazza Favazza: And that’s because of all of you guys.

Olivia Paras: Congratulations.

Lindsay Favazza Favazza: That’s because of all the awesome guests that we’ve had, and because of all the awesome listeners. So we really appreciate you all. And we will see you on the next-next episode of The Agents Who Crush It In Real Estate. So bye, everybody. Thanks, Olivia.


Thanks for joining us on the Agents Who Crush It In Real Estate podcast. We hope you’ve learned some valuable takeaways. Be sure to take action and grow your business. You can check out the Episode Notes and more content from the show at CrushitinRE.com/podcast. And if you’d like this episode, and you’d like to hear more stories, please share with others, post on social media or leave a rating or review. To catch all the latest from Anthony you can follow him on Instagram at Crush It In Real Estate on Facebook and YouTube. Thanks again and we’ll see you next time.