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I’ve got a special interview today with Jake from Nomadic Hustle.
Jake’s been at the online game for a few years now and has experience across the popular business models, so I’m excited to hear his perspective.
Also, he’s got a new course called Content 2 Cash.
Check it out if you’re interested in learning how to monetize content from someone who’s been doing it successfully for years.
What’s up man?
Let’s start with the intro.
Who are you and what do you do?
First off, cheers for having me here.
It’s always fun to work with someone whom I’ve met in person and shared some good laughs with.
As for who I am…
Just a dude who loves to travel around while building online businesses.
The TL:DR version of my online business life is this:
I got caught in a shitty corporate America gig for a couple years. Absolutely hated it.
Booked a ticket to Central America for 4-5 months and traveled around on savings while doing some Fiverr and Upwork gigs on the side.
Loved every single second of that experience, even though I got jumped by gangbangers with shanks in San Salvador.
So I came back to the States and started figuring out how to travel around without having to come back home and get a job. This led me to freelance writing and blogging.
From there, I ventured off into niche sites, social media, and email marketing. Which basically led to what I’m doing today.
Just traveling around while creating content and selling shit online, often with affiliate marketing.
I’m going to ask you about online business, but let’s start with travel and your experience in Latin America.
When did you start living abroad?
Where did you go first?
Why did you choose that city and country?
I started traveling in 2014 on the trip to Central America I mentioned above.
I visited Miami and then hit up Panama, Costa Rica, Nicaragua - and your beloved Managua, and San Salvador.
This was over the course of 4-5 months total.
I choose this trip because I found a $79 USD one-way on Spirit Airlines from Miami to Panama City, which was a steal.
P.S: Don’t EVER fly Spirit, y’all.
I also liked the idea of easily being able to visit multiple countries via bus, which Central America was absolutely ideal for.
And even though Central America is filled with shitholes and can’t really hold a candle to South America, I had the time of my life and the travel bug got me.
Let’s do pros and cons.
What cities have you found are the best for weather, beaches, food, culture, etc?
And what cities are the WORST for those things?
I may a bit different than most, but I absolutely love Dominican culture.
The dudes are bros and easy to get along with. I played on a basketball team and league down there. Was a great time. Also have a couple of great buddies there.
The women never leave the house without high heels on. It’s truly a pleasure to behold to walk into a the club and every single girl has on high heels and a dress.
I love to dance bachata and perreando to reggaeton. Oh, and the cigars, rum, and beaches just add to the ambience.
There’s lots of gold-diggers in the country, which they call chapidoras. And while that can be a downside, it’s kind of like a national pastime to talk shit on chapidoras with your Dominican bros - which is always a good time.
“Que chapiadora eres, amor ;)”
Not to mention, the place has a wild, wild west feel to it.
For example, on my first trip to the DR, this girl picked me up in her car for a date. I legit knew nothing about Santo Domingo, the DR, and couldn’t speak a lick of Spanish.
So she’s like I know a place.
She takes me to a bar, but instead of going inside we drive thru and grab two massive green slushy drinks. At this point, I’m perplexed.
A drive-thru bar.
I take a swig and this drink is strong, maybe 5-6 shots of rum in it. She pulls out of the drive-thru and starts downing hers while driving. Even more confused at this point.
I asked her about it, the drinking and drive.
She claimed it wasn’t against the law because anyone who had enough money to buy a car in the DR also had enough money to bribe a cop out of a drinking and driving ticket.
Wild, wild west.
I vibe with Dominican culture. Mexican people can be cool as hell too.
Food-wise...Peru and Mexico take the cake there. No contest between those two countries and the rest of Latin America.
Lima, Peru has some of the best weather in the world between December-May each year. Eternal spring type shit with Pacific Ocean views. Dogshit outside those months though.
Medellin is tough to beat weather wise, but hay mucho prepagos alla, marica. So it’s not my favorite city.
Beaches is a tough one. Because places with stunning beaches tend to get overrun with tourists and lose their charm.
Looking at you Playa del Carmen and Cartagena.
I enjoyed Mazatlan a lot, but would probably be looking to spend more time at the beaches in Brazil before deciding whether Mexico or Brazil have better beaches.
As for the worst…
Weather: Bogota has shit weather and is grey most of the year
Beaches: Playa del Carmen beaches always have seaweed on them
Food: Central America has some of the worst food I’ve ever seen, would not recommend
Culture: Peruvian chicks are cool, but it’s hard to make male friends there due to the cultural differences
What mistakes have you made so far when it comes to traveling and living abroad?
What do you wish you’d known ahead of time?
What should guys who want to do what we’re doing (running location independent online businesses) know before they get started?
Trying to do it all at once.
That was my biggest mistake.
Just fookin’ breathe when you start living abroad. Don’t rush around like a chicken with your head cut off...which is what I did for years.
Pick a city you think you’ll love.
Then stay for 3-6 months and spend as little time in your apartment as possible.
Eat your meals out.
Work from a coworking space or cafe.
Join a gym. Join a yoga studio. Join a boxing gym or mma.
Go out on the weekends.
Talk to people and make some local friends.
By kind of integrating into a country and culture, you’ll end up having a far better time than moving from place to place quickly.
Make business a priority. You don’t want to be the guy that had to go home because he ran out of cash or was living beyond his means.
Instead, focus on business each and every single day you’re living in the new city. Even if it’s just for 2-3 hours a day, that consistency will end up paying off big time.
I made the mistake of only working a few days a week for years and it cost me.
You’ve given out good advice on using Airbnb.
Can you share some of it here?
Generally, I’ve been able to find good apartments, but I’ve had a couple times where I immediately regretted my choice.
My biggest Airbnb tip is to ask for a discount, especially on long term stays.
I was baffled to find out that most people think of Airbnb as more of a hotel than a service where you can negotiate.
If I’m staying in an Airbnb for over two weeks, I’ll always ask for a discount. Anywhere from 20-50% generally - depending on how long I’m staying, if it’s high-season, and how much the apartment is above market price.
So let’s say I’m going to a non-tourist city for a month. I get on Google and find out how much a one-bedroom unfurnished apt in the city center is.
Let’s say it’s $500-600 a month depending on quality.
Now I have the baseline. So I get on Airbnb and start searching for furnished spots in that same area. They’re coming up $40-60 a night.
I find one I like and it’s $45 a night, but comes up around $1,100 for the month I want to visit.
I’ll go in and message the host directly asking to get the place for $750 a month.
The host will usually come back with a price between $850-900 in this scenario, which I’ll then accept...as that’s well over 30% off the nightly rate.
Also, make sure you read the reviews and the RULES. Some Airbnb hosts expect you to act like saints while in their rental. No guests. No noise. No nothing.
Fuck those hosts!
I always specifically ask if they are any other rules I need to know about before booking. I want it on paper, err email, that I know of all rules before booking...so the host can’t give me any shit when I’m just trying to live my life.
This doesn’t mean hookers and cocaine lifestyle type shit. I’m just saying that I expect to be treated like an adult in the apartment.
If you plan to work a lot from home while at the Airbnb, make sure you ask the host for a screenshot of wifi speeds. If the host has a triple digit IQ, they can get this to you...and will if you’re staying a month or more.
Last question on travel.
How has traveling around LatAm changed your view of the world?
It’s broadened my perspective and I’d like to understand how your view of life, culture, travel, etc have changed.
Honestly, a lot of people talk about all these eye opening experiences while traveling and all that jazz.
Like the backpacker hippy chicks who talk about the poor kids and how “happy” they are all the time.
They’re just happy, smiling, and energetic around you because they know pasty white chicks only come to “Shitholelandia” to pass out free food and money.
Of course they’re happy to see you.
The main thing or perspective traveling has taught me is that if you can’t make it in the United States...you can’t make it anywhere.
Point. Blank. Period.
The United States has the best economy in the history of the world as of writing. There’s millions of ways to make money online and off. RIGHT NOW.
If you can’t get your piece of the pie while being a native English speaker with a US passport, then you’re damn near worthless.
After traveling and seeing truly intelligent and successful people who barely make ends meet in Latin America, it makes me upset to see slackers in the States rake in money for nothing.
It also pisses me off when people bitch about the States. Sure, the place is culturally vapid...but you can bet your bottom dollar that people from places with robust, conservative cultures would give their left arm for a chance to earn a US salary.
All of that being said…
Travel has strengthened my resolve to earn in dollars, while spending in pesos.
When I started freelancing online one of my big goals was to travel, live abroad and be location independent.
So let’s shift the focus to online business.
What do you think are the things people MUST do when STARTING an online business?
And what mistakes should they try to avoid?
The main thing I see people screwing up is switching business models every damn month.
Jumping from one thing to the next without ever finding true success.
If you’re looking to make cash online, focus on building one single skill and then monetizing it.
Become a damn good writer.
Learn how to design WordPress sites.
Dive deep into ecomm brand building.
Become a FB ads beast.
Pick one and do it for 6+ months. Months on end of consistent action and learning.
If you can do that and simply be consistent, you’ll be a lot further along than you’d imagine.
You’re kind of a reformed party animal.
What do you say to guys who can’t seem to focus and get their shit together?
And what was the turning point for you that said, “I’m going to get serious about my business”?
Yeah, pretty much. I fucked my way to being nearly broke for years on end. Certainly don’t regret it, as I’ve made memories I’ll never forget during that time...along with an external hard drive filled snippets of those memories to ensure they’re never forgotten 😉
The turning point for me was when I saw people who used to be on the same level as I was start turning insane profits. While I was still living like a broke degenerate.
I started thinking ‘if they can do those type of numbers, so can I’ - which basically led to me putting business as a priority after years of taking a backseat.
It was all about priorities for me.
Once business became a true priority in my life, my income began skyrocketing.
I know you’ve experimented with different business models and now you’re moving into paid info products with your new course, Content 2 Cash.
Which business model has been your biggest success so far and why do you think that is?
Which business model have you had the LEAST success with? Again - why do you think that is?
And what do you recommend for beginners?
That’s a tough one because we all have different skill sets, abilities, and budgets.
So I’m not sure there’s any one single business model that could be best for everyone.
Personally, I’ve had insane success with affiliate marketing the past 6-8 months. By far the most profitable thing I’ve done.
For example, in November 2018, I had 6 affiliate programs that made over $1,000 in profits each - with 3 of them well into the multiple 1,000s range.
The reason for that is because I’m absolutely obsessed with passive income and only working for myself. Building passive income streams was my priority for the past 18+ months and it paid off.
On the other hand, I never had a ton of success with freelancing. My best month I made like $3,500 USD give or take from freelancing. That’s not good.
The issue was I simply wasn’t enamoured with the business model and never made it a priority.
I know you’re killing it with freelancing, Dennis...and I know a number of other friends who do that same. But it wasn’t for me.
I think there’s 3 options that stand above the rest.
If you’re broke as can be and need money rolling in ASAP, I’d start freelance writing - content and copy.
If you’re looking for hands-off passive income that takes about 5-6 months to start rolling in, then a niche site is a great route to go.
If you have money and time to invest in building a brand, then ecomm and dropshipping can be insanely profitable.
Let’s say you lose all your online income.
You niche sites get shut down.
All hell breaks loose.
What do you do to get up to $5,000 in monthly revenue as fast as possible?
I’d do two things instantly.
First, I’d pick a niche and sign 3-5 email marketing clients with the quickness.
That should get me close to $5,000 a month, if not more.
Next, I’d quickly start building an ecomm brand to get my passive income over $3,000 a month within 3-4 months.
That’s how I’d start out.
Once those two things were set up, I’d begin rebuilding a personal brand with an email list and social media account.
I’d then build out a couple niche sites in areas I know to be highly profitable...hiring writers from my profits through other ventures.
Let’s talk about mindset a little bit since I think it’s a fundamental topic when it comes to success and online business.
I know you had knee surgery not too long ago, so how do you deal with mental or emotional slumps?
What keeps you pushing forward?
Mental and emotional slumps are a result of fucked up hormones and/or problems in your life that *you* created.
If you believe or feel you’re in a slump, I’d immediately get hormone levels checked.
Males should have testosterone levels above 700+ at minimum. If your levels are below that, then slumps will be a part of life.
If your hormones are good, then you should look at your life and see why you’re in a slump.
Often, it’s because you’re doing work that you’re not passionate about or into.
If you’re dreading the work you’re doing, that’s not a slump. You just have a shit job.
Oh, and una cosa mas…
I’m a huge proponent of abundance. The abundance mindset is an absolute requirement for anyone hoping to make cash online.
You have to view money as an abundant resource in the world. One that you attract each and everyday.
Now I want to ask you about strategy.
You and I both know that there are MANY ways to make online.
How do you decide what projects to focus on?
For example, what made you decide to build a course instead of more niche sites or maybe an ecommerce store?
And what made you decide to create a course about monetizing content vs. niche sites or freelancing or some other topic?
I don’t have a system regarding that side of strategy yet. A lot of it comes down to gut feeling based on past experiences.
I also pay close attention to what other people, who I know make great money online, are doing.
Online business is a lot like dating gurls in this regard. I pay more attention to what people do than what they say.
I decided to make a course on becoming a better writer for fun and profit because there was so much misinformation about the topic around our ‘sphere...and I knew I could help them after writing online for 5+ years now.
Everybody talks like they’re making $50K a month in profits online. The reality is most people don’t, won’t, and simply can’t.
Many people are just looking for ways to add an extra $1,000-5,000 a month in cash starting out.
So I wanted to show people in that camp how to create income just using the written word.
How they can make a good chunk of change every single month just by developing the ‘meta’ skill of writing.
Once they’re able to write at a certain skill level, I then show them a handful of different ways they can monetize that skill.
What made you decide to get more active on social media?
Because you weren’t always very active on Twitter.
I’ve actually taken a one month hiatus from Twitter to focus on my course and my overall health.
But I was taking the platform seriously for about 7-8+ months before then.
Because I’ve found Twitter to be the absolute best place to find intelligent ‘fans’ or people who just vibe with your shit and personality.
It’s where smart-er people hang out online.
The conversation is good, I learn something each day on the platform, and it’s a great place for writers to create on because you get near instant feedback on your ideas.
Not to mention, Twitter can be monetized effectively too.
One of the things I’ve realized while living and traveling in LatAm is that it costs a lot less than I thought it would.
What do you think is the bare minimum someone should be making to live in any of the LatAm cities you’ve enjoyed?
$1,500 a month? $3,000 a month? Another amount?
I’d say $2,000 USD a month.
You could still live like a king in Cali, Colombia or Arequipa, Peru for $1,200-1,300 a month. Probably pretty cheap in a place like Leon, Mexico too.
But if you want to live in nice areas in major cities, then $2K is the minimum you’d need in 2019...when accounting for flights, Airbnbs, eating out, gym fees, etc.
For example, you’d need around $2,100-2,200 to do Bogota, Colombia right for a month.
$800-900 in rent. $200 in groceries. $300 eating out. $300 nightlife and dating. $50 gym. $100 Uber. $20 phone. $200-400 miscellaneous expenses.
I want to ask you about your “Freedom Number.”
In other words, have you thought about a number, whether it’s monthly revenue or net worth that you want to hit?
Like would you be happy making $50,000 a month or having $5 million in the bank?
Would that be enough to cover your dream lifestyle?
Would you need less? More?
I’ve never been super motivated by one single number, although my goal for this year is $25,000 USD a month profits.
My end-goal is to buy one piece of property cash per year for the next 12-15 years. By the end of that time, I’d have at least a dozen properties all around the world and a net worth well within the millions.
Even if all my online ventures went to hell and a handbasket at that point, I’d have well over $20,000 USD rental revenue coming in each month.
Most people think that ADDING stuff is the way to reach their goals.
I’m a firm believer that less is more.
What’s one thing you think you should eliminate or stop doing to bring you closer to your goals?
You’re damn right there.
Starting new niche sites.
They’re more than profitable, but at a certain point I believe it’s better to further monetize the best ones...instead of adding more.
As we mentioned earlier, you have a new course out called Content 2 Cash.
Can you tell me a little about the course?
What problem does it solve?
And what mistakes do you see people making when trying to monetize their content?
The course is basically about one thing:
Making money with the written word.
Content 2 Cash is an exact roadmap on how to adopt proper mindsets and principles, develop a valuable skill set, and then properly monetize that skillset in whichever way your heart desires.
If that's something of interest to you, this might be an ideal course for you.
But before I get ahead of myself, I want to make sure that we get something straight:
Writing is one of the most valuable skills one could ever hope to develop.
First off, writing has many practical benefits:
- Increasing communication skills
- Teaching you to think more precisely
- Providing material to look back and reflect on for refinement and memories
All of which provide a cornucopia of benefits in and of themselves.
However, writing also provides countless opportunities to make money.
You see, writing is the crux of all websites, advertisements, email marketing campaigns, personal brands, powerful presentations, etc.
The options are honestly endless.
Not only that, but almost all writing gigs can be done from the comfort of your home, or halfway across the world in a location of your choosing thanks to the internet.
Oh, and on your schedule too.
Content 2 Cash teaches individuals how to make money online by developing the ‘meta’ skill of writing.
It solves the problems of ‘how to make money online’ and ‘how to make money as a writer’ in one swoop.
The biggest mistake I see people making when trying to monetize their content and the written word is not doing market and keyword research.
I’ve seen so many people over the years simply write to write. To put their thoughts out there. For 99.9% of people this is a failed strategy.
If there were no limitations or consequences, what would your average PERFECT DAY look like?
I want to get a better of what you’re working towards.
This may not seem to imaginative, but it’s the type of routine I believe to be ideal...
Wake up and immediately head to a yoga class on the beach. Take a swim afterwards.
Come home to a fresh breakfast filled with proteins and fruits.
Work for 3-5 hours after breakfast. My maid cooks me lunch after this.
Another hour or so of work, then hit the gym. More beach time after the gym.
Spend time with friends and/or family in the evening. Maybe go out to eat for a fresh tuna steak.
Followed by cosas with una culona.
Finally, unwind for the night by sitting on my balcony watching the ocean waves roll in and reading a good book on Kindle.
Building off the last question…
Imagine it’s February 2024.
5 years have passed since our interview.
What have you accomplished?
What does your life look like now?
That’s a tough one…
$50K a month in profits minimum.
Owner of 5-6 properties in multiple countries.
Serious relationship with a gurl who you can tell still has a soul...just by how she smiles.
Probably a kid or two.
Split time between Latin America and the States to see my family, who is all still alive and well.
Developed and strengthened relationships with men all around the world who are on a similar path as me.
If you've been trying to create high-quality content, but still struggle with:
- Coming up with good ideas (instead of staring at a blank page for an hour
- Building an engaged audience that looks forward to your posts
- Figuring out how to monetize your content to build cash flow and recurring income
Check out Jake's course by clicking the button below: