Courtney Ilarraza is the Co-Founder of Baby Bodyguards, a National Safety Expert, an American Heart Association CPR Instructor, and Mom of three. Read on to see how this criminal prosecutor traded in her law practice for a baby-proofing business from home.
Tell us a little bit about your entrepreneurial journey.
I went to law school and became a criminal prosecutor in NYC. During my first year of practice, I became pregnant with my first child. It became a goal of mine to become my own boss and be able to create my own schedule to find the work/family balance that was right for my family. That same year I learned of two tragic accidents involving babies of acquaintances, which could have been prevented with proper education and training. My husband and I decided to devote our lives to protecting babies and parents from becoming victims of preventable deathly injuries. We hoped, but at the time didn’t realize it would ever take off the way it did. We were profitable in our first year.
Do you have any special training?
I am a Certified Passenger Safety Technician, which means I am certified in the proper use and installation of child safety seats. I am also an American Heart Association Basic Life Support Instructor as well as a licensed attorney.
Give us an example of how you landed one of your first clients.
I decided to reach out to prominent mommy bloggers in my community and offered them our in-home safety consultation as well as some free babyproofing. They agreed to write about their experience with Baby Bodyguards. After we got some relevant press the phone started ringing.
How are you currently growing your business?
We advertise our business online, but we reached a tipping point a few years ago where most of our business is word of mouth referrals.
How does your business generate revenue?
We provide in-home safety consultations, babyproofing, Infant/Child CPR classes, and car seat installation lessons. We started off just doing babyproofing, but as we noticed needs in the market we added revenue streams.
How much does your business earn annually?
We have been growing at a very steady rate over the last 8 years. My husband and I now both work at Baby Bodyguards full time and we generate over $300K per year.
What advice do you have for other women who want to start their own baby-proofing business?
My advice would be to partner up with an established business such as Baby Bodyguards. Every year at least 2 new companies pop up on the radar and they go under pretty quickly. For a small investment, less than a semester in college, it is possible to buy into a successful brand and business and receive ongoing training and support.
Baby Bodyguards offers a home business franchise. Can you tell us a little about that?
We are offering Baby Bodyguard franchises in certain markets and are looking for the right people to join our team. Our company provides the work/life balance I dreamt about and we want to share that with other moms craving more time with their children and financial independence. A Baby Bodyguards franchise is a perfect “at home” business with very low start-up costs and also provides multiple revenue streams.
Thanks to Courtney Ilarraza for sharing her story!