Digital Entrepreneur Interview Series: NOMADasaurus

I’m all about inspiring others to pursue their dream life.  Life is too short to simply exist.  Everyone has a different story and I wanted to inspire my readers by sharing the stories of other digital entrepreneurs whom have taken the leap.  I want to SHOW them it CAN be done.  Live life on purpose is my motto and you are doing that in spades!

Today, I introduce you to Jarryd Salem (who works and travels with his wife and business partner Alesha Bradford) from NOMADasaurus.

 

NOMADasaurus at Moraine Lake

Tell me about yourself

My name is Jarryd Salem, and I am a traveller, photographer and entrepreneur from Sydney. I’ve been travelling around the world for 12 years, exploring off-the-beaten-path destinations and local cultures as I go. Along with my wife Alesha, we run Australia’s top adventure travel blog, NOMADasaurus, the digital marketing agency Peak Evolution Media, and a small tour company focused on adventures in Central Asia.

 

Do you travel full time or have a base? 

For almost a decade we travelled full-time, with over 5 years being completely nomadic, but now we have a base back in Sydney. That long on the road was a fantastic experience, but definitely exhausting and we suffered from severe travel burn-out. Even though we still travel a hell of a lot (only being in Sydney about 3-4 months of the year), it is nice to have a base to come back to instead of living out of a backpack. We can focus more on our health, enjoy being around friends and family and take time to relax.

In terms of business, having a home base has helped us tremendously with growth and diversification. When we’re travelling we’re limited to squeezing in a few hours here and there whenever we can, just keeping on top of important deadlines and failing to scale properly. When we’re home we can really focus on taking the business to the next level as we’re not constantly moving.

We loved being nomadic, and moving for months (and years) at a time, but I don’t feel as though we’ll be going back to that hectic lifestyle anytime soon.

 

NOMADasaurus – Lemaire Channel Antarctica

How did you become an entrepreneur?  Did you have an ‘ah-ha’ moment?  Or was it something you kind of ‘fell into’?

Definitely just fell into it! We were travellers first, entrepreneurs second. We would backpack around, taking on whatever jobs we could to keep us on the road. It was only after we’d been travelling for 6 years that we decided to start our blog. We knew that some travel blogs made money, but we didn’t know how and it was never our reason for starting one. Over time though we started making an income from freelancing, and it gave us the inspiration to try to keep making money to travel.

 

Tell me about your ‘why’ –  why are you pursuing this business in particular?

We love the freedom of working for ourselves, and the challenges of growing and taking on new ventures. It’s not just about making enough money to backpack around anymore, we’re well past that stage. We want to keep growing to make our businesses larger than ourselves, developing a strong purpose and giving back to the communities and destinations we’ve been so fortunate enough to explore over the years.

 

The big question everyone wants to know –  what’s your main source of income?   How do you make money doing what you do?  

We have multiple sources of income, and are always experimenting with different avenues. For now though the main income streams are advertising, affiliate marketing, influencer campaigns, content creation, commercial photography, consulting, ambassadorships and running our tours.

 

What piece of advice would you suggest to someone considering ‘ditching the desk’ to become an ‘online warrior’?  

The freedom it can afford you is amazing, and we wouldn’t change our jobs for anything in the world. But it is a lot of work. The concept of the 4-hour work-week is bullshit – You only get to that reality after working thousands of hours, studying, growing, experimenting and failing. The digital nomad lifestyle is fantastic, but it is a lot of work. As long as you set your expectations properly, you’ll be fine. It’s not all sitting around tropical beaches sipping on cocktails and only spending 20 minutes a day on your laptop, even though the ‘gurus’ try to sell it that way.

Don’t take that negatively, it’s just how it really is. It’s 100% worth it though, and we’ll never go back to working ‘normal’ jobs again.

 

NOMADasaurus at the Remarkables

What’s the one thing you can’t do without to run your business? (Apart from readership…)

Internet. And my darling wife and business partner, Alesha.

 

Is there anything you miss about having a 9-5 type of job?

I never worked a standard 9-5 job. I’ve worked in the mines, construction sites, bars, factories, and countless other places that required long hours and little breaks. But the one thing I suppose I miss is having a routine and structure, and being able to fully check out mentally when the work day is done. That’s not something you get with being an entrepreneur – you are always thinking about your businesses.

 

What three things have you learned in the last year?

  1. Hire good people and outsource everything you can.
  2. Surrounding yourself with a solid community is key to success both personally and professionally.
  3. Know your worth and don’t settle for less.

     

What is the best thing about being an entrepreneur?   Or better yet, is there anything that would make you go back to a 9-5 job? 

Not having to ask anyone for permission to go somewhere or take time off.

 

Give me a reality check moment that people considering this lifestyle needs to understand, before they take the leap?

What I mentioned in the above question. It involves a lot of work.

 

If you would do anything over again, what would that be?  

Nothing, because everything I’ve done so far in the exact order I’ve done it in as led me to here.

OK, let’s talk travel:

As a traveller, what is your style of travel? Do you go budget friendly or live life luxuriously? 

After a lot of years of travelling on a very tight budget, and at times being very close to broke, I have a lot of experience in travelling on the cheap. These days I do like my creature comforts, such as nicer accommodation and good food (and coffee!), but I still have a healthy respect for what a dollar is worth so don’t like to spend money on unnecessary luxuries. I’d rather sleep in a cheap guesthouse and spend my money on big experiences.

 

How do you keep the budget under control?  

We used to note every single dollar we spent in a notebook when we travel. Now that we don’t have to really worry about money too much when we travel, we don’t really monitor what we spend that diligently in terms of travel. That doesn’t mean we spend carefree though – we still won’t drop $500 a night on accommodation if we can get a nice private room for $20.

 

Which country has impacted you the most as a traveller? Tell me why.

Guatemala, because it was our first proper backpacking destination after years of being ski bums in Canada. We were young, carefree, open-minded and very frugal. We were in constant awe of everything we encountered and it really kicked off our love of travel.

 

Tell me your best travel tip! 

Travel slowly!

 

Do you have something you’d love my readers to know about?  

We have a bunch of very cool exciting projects coming out in the next 12 months, expanding into new territories and working hard to develop the best damn travel and photography content on the net.

We’re also running exclusive small-group adventure tours in Kyrgyzstan, Uzbekistan and Mongolia, and will be expanding into other countries very soon.

You can find Jarryd and Alesha here:

Website:  https://www.nomadasaurus.com)

Instagram:  https://www.instagram.com/nomadasaurus/ 

YouTube:  https://www.youtube.com/nomadasaurus

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