Agency Chat – Not All Entrepreneurs Are Born, Some Are Crafted…
Author: Ines Lotfi July 25 | Blog
LA-based Laura Gibler Ciannamea admits she wasn’t born an entrepreneur, but only realised she wanted to be one after years of chasing a dream that wasn’t really hers.
If her name didn’t give it away, Laura Gibler Ciannamea was born and raised in Italy. At the young age of 12, her parents sent her away to summer camps all around Europe to learn English.
Now, Laura has channeled her extensive travel experience into her agency, Remotely Collective, where she makes it her mission to source contractors from all around the world, to create a vision that is as culturally diverse as possible.
“Because when you have people from different disciplines, countries, religions, backgrounds, it’s amazing how that can come together in the creative space. You can create beautiful things, think outside the box and really be different.”
Diversity is the biggest pillar in Laura’s agency, because she loves people, and people love her.
And it’s not hard to see why.
Chasing a dream that wasn’t right…
Social constructs can be tricky, and while entrepreneurship isn’t the right path for everyone, it’s easy to fall into the trap of “wanting” things that aren’t really what you desire.
The house, the car, the stable job… Laura admits she only recently discovered what she really desired.
“I used to be in love with the idea of working for a big, famous company. I chased that dream for years. And then I realised that’s not what I wanted.
In a big company, you don’t see the impact your role has on a project. You are just given this small task and you do it on repeat. I don’t like that. I love to follow a project in its entirety.”
And that realisation came after almost 15 years of marketing experience.
“In any job that I had during that time, I was always trying to do things my way. I never agreed with what people wanted me to do and I always wanted to find a better way to do things.”
After a few jumps from Miami to New York, to LA to Mexico and then to New York again, Laura found it was being location independent that truly brought her happiness – and so she built her agency with that in mind.
The winding road to the American dream…
Leaving Italy and surviving in cut-throat cities like New York and LA was no easy feat. When asked what got her to the point of experiencing these amazing chapters of her life in the States, Laura had a quick answer ready.
From grinding her way to a 6-month visa through working in PR for the Italian Trade Commission in Miami, to consulting on short-term projects and having to move back and forth from Italy regularly, to crossing the language barrier at her first job in New York, Laura has been working on her dream to live in the United States non-stop since she was 25.
“I remember my first job in New York. The very first day they told me to sit down and transcribe everything that happened on a call. I didn’t have any context whatsoever, the language barrier was huge, and I got it all wrong.”
Fast forward to a few years ago, and Laura was closing deals in Las Vegas at the poker table.
“I was in negotiation with a company that agreed to sponsor my visa at the time. They actually flew me to Vegas and we bonded over tequila. We decided to go and play a bit of poker, and I negotiated while playing poker, with a dancer pretty much dancing over me on the table.
I closed the deal, got the job, got the visa, and the rest is history.”
Now that Laura’s successfully running her own business out of Los Angeles, she’s finding ways to pivot towards the things she really enjoys.
“We do revenue generation for e-commerce, and we do it using mostly paid media, Facebook and Instagram advertising and email marketing.
But now we’ve really started to pivot towards email marketing, and we’re expanding our niche. I recently discovered I love working with adventure-based businesses. So ticket sales, essentially, but it’s all-year round. Anything you can add to cart, I can market.
We work with an animal conservation park in Florida for example, they do great work. We got amazing results from that, we’re at about 12X ROAS across funnels with Facebook ads, and I really love working with them. So we’re working on attracting more businesses like that.”
Like for so many entrepreneurs, being too nice has been a stumbling block for Laura in the past. But experience has changed her, and she has some tips for entrepreneurs who are just starting out.
“I used to be too nice. But in the last few years, I’ve become bold. I just realised that clients don’t pay me to tell them what they want to hear. They pay me to tell them what the solution is, and I tell them: this isn’t going to work.
The thing is… You’re never in control. That’s a hoax. You simply react, or better yet, you try to foresee issues as soon as you can, and then you react to the best of your abilities.
I’ve just managed to detach myself from these problems. I’m not going to have all the answers all the time, I just know I will find the answer pretty quickly.”
And Laura relies on what she refers to as “3 M’s” to continuously evolve, detach and grow not only as a business owner, but as a person. Mindset, mentors and masterminds.
“It’s a work in progress, but I would say Burning Man has had a big role in this. Just travelling, meeting new people, seeing how people react, having mentors,…
It’s what’s changed my life and the way I do business. As long as you have a core solution for yourself, you can do anything.”