Jakob Laukaitis is one of my favorite digital nomads and if you aren’t already subscribed to his YouTube channel, I highly recommend it.
Jakob is a European nomad who has built a few different digital businesses and now wanders the world as a travel vlogger and content creator.
Watch/read below to learn more! And if you’re looking for another interesting nomad profile, check out this one on Pieter Levels.
Table of Contents
The Written Version:
In the past four years, ever since I graduated high school, it’s been pretty much all of my time traveling the world visiting countries like Japan, Indonesia, Switzerland, New Zealand, and many others.
Throughout that time, I received literally thousands of messages from people all around the world asking me how I was able to afford long term trumps without having to take long breaks from traveling and work on jobs in countries. And the answer to that question is very simple.
I’m the so-called digital nomad, which basically means I can work from absolutely anywhere as long as I have my computer and a Wi-Fi connection. As time went by, I kept receiving more and more of these messages, and at some point, it simply wasn’t possible to reply to them anymore.
“This is the greatest bike ride of my entire life. Feel as people need to stop every one second to savor it.”
So I decided to create this video where I’ll talk about how I became a digital nomad myself, explain how anyone else can have the same lifestyle, and also provide you with some really useful resources to help you get started. Now that being said, let’s get going.
Part One: Jakob’s Story
When I was a little kid, I absolutely hated the fact that I wasn’t able to fully control my own life. Now, don’t get me wrong, my parents were awesome. But every time I wanted to do anything, I had to get their permission.
In a lot of those cases, it all came down to the fact that I didn’t have my own money. And when I realized that I started searching for ways to make my own money and become financially independent.
So from a very young age, I would come up with many different business ideas like selling postcards in the local market or offering my cleaning services to my extended family and my neighbors and people around the block. But long story short, I was able to establish my very first official company at the age of 15 with a business partner who was 38 years old at that time.
In those days, we were running two different companies. The first one was a small book publishing house. And the other one was an online shop that sold physical books. At first, everything was going great. But after about 10 months of working together, we had so many disagreements about the future of our business that I decided to sell my shares in the company to my partner for over 7000 euros, I think.
Summertime and the living is easy.
And eventually, I came to the conclusion that the only real opportunity for me was to work on online businesses because I came from a super tiny country, such a nice place. That’s nice nature, everything’s perfect. And obviously, there weren’t that many things that could do in the local market.
So from then on, I started working on many different kinds of online businesses. Most of them of course, failed miserably. But some of them became minor successes. Like a really big entertainment website in Eastern Europe that attracted over 3 million users every single month or a recipe website that became quite big as well and later got acquired by another company and a few other ventures.
During those years, I was never really interested in traveling. I remember I went to the Silicon Valley in San Francisco when I was 17, that I would frequently visit London or Cambridge when I would go to all of those trips only because I wanted to meet some people or raise money for my companies or go to some events or conferences or stuff like that.
Then right after I graduated high school, I was invited to attend this really cool event co-organized by the Malaysian government, where they invited 500 young entrepreneurs from all around the world to come to Malaysia and work with one another to basically try to make the world a better place by working on issues like women’s rights, climate change, and a few others and that trip it literally blew my mind. I finally realized how big the world was and how little I knew about different cultures and different countries, religions, ways of life. And so many other things again.
And then when I came back to Europe, I simply couldn’t stop thinking about how awesome it would be to travel the world while running my online business at the same time. And at that point, I was running a social media marketing agency that was called chili pepper marketing, that business was making more than enough money for me to travel pretty much anywhere I wanted to. And also I didn’t need to meet my employees face to face and I didn’t need to meet my customers face to face.
So after some time, I figured that I could easily do this absolutely anywhere else they want as long as I had my computer and a wifi connection. So good.
So the very same day I booked my flight tickets from Lithuania to Bangkok. And a few weeks later, I left for my very first big trip to Asia. I was exploring Thailand, Vietnam, Malaysia, Indonesia, and the Philippines for three months, and those three months were probably the best months in my entire life because I got to learn so much. I got to grow so much itself so many places and experience so many interesting things.
After that trip, I simply never stop traveling. And that was about four years ago. These days, I still travel around 12 months a year. Also, I focus most of my working time on this online coupons company called chameleon john that we established with two partners a few years back. And throughout this time, we managed to grow to a pretty big seven-digit business where every year we organize these giveaways for all of our teams to rent a villa somewhere in Asia then we find all of our employees there for one month and all of us live together, work together and have a lot of fun.
Oh, must’ve hurt.
Part Two: How to Be A Nomad
Now that you know my story, it’s time for part two: how to be a nomad.
There are literally thousands of people all around the world living the digital nomad lifestyle. Some of us travel very actively like I do. Others simply spend most of their time in some location that they really like, but the thing that bonds us is the fact we are completely location-dependent, meaning we can go absolutely anywhere, anytime for as long as we wish.
How can this be real life? I have no idea.
And another thing I want to say is that it’s absolutely never been easier to become location-dependent because we have the internet and we have so many opportunities to make money remotely while traveling the world. So when it comes to becoming a digital nomad, it’s basically all about making money online without having to meet people face to face. So there are some professions that inherently cannot be location-dependent: stuff like being a doctor. But there are so many professions that can easily be location-dependent stuff like an accountant or a web developer, or a designer or translator or an online tutor urged so many other things.
Right now I want to talk a bit more about the social media marketing agency that I was running at the age of 19 when I started traveling the world because they feel like it’s a very, very simple, and very good example of how these sort of businesses operate.
How Jakob Grew His Customer Base to Create a Sustainable Nomad Lifestyle
In those days, there were many small to medium-sized businesses that had their own Facebook fan page, but they didn’t really have the knowledge or the time to actually manage them. So what we did is we approached hundreds of different companies. And we offered them to create a unique marketing strategy for them.
We would start managing their Facebook fan pages by uploading daily content and engaging with their fans, and also we can manage their Facebook ad campaigns. And that’s what they wanted us to do.
Now, the structure that I had inside the company was this, every customer was working with one project manager and one content manager. Basically, they were getting paid a monthly fee for every customer that they were working with. So let’s say we had one customer who was paying $300 a month, right? So I could give $100 to the product manager and then $100 to the Content Manager for that specific client, and then $100 would be pure profit for the company.
In this scenario, even if we had only one customer, we were already profiting, whereas that would never have been possible if we had to have to hire these full-time we’re paying the monthly salary? Right, we would have to get at least let’s say, 10 customers, to get some sort of a profit.
That is what you call a bad view. And this is what you call a good viewpoint.
Absolutely, everyone was happy because the clients didn’t care about the arrangements we had inside the company, they simply wanted good service. All of my employees were extremely happy with that as well because they could choose the number of clients they wanted to work with. And obviously, for me, it was cool because the company was profitable from day one, and every single new client that we acquired made the company even more profitable.
Now, when it comes to making money remotely, there are literally hundreds of different ways to do it. But I want to talk a bit more about the ones that seem to be the most popular and obviously the easiest to start.
How to Make Money While Traveling the World
Welcome to the incredibly unsophisticated list of ways to make money remotely while traveling the world.
- Steal that agency, bro. So first off, you could obviously start some sort of an agency in a very similar fashion that I just described. There are many different kinds of services that you could be found in exactly the same way stuff like translating texts, or designing websites, or even editing videos or photos
- Produce epic online courses. If you have some expertise in some sort of a niche that many people are interested in, you could create online courses on that and publish it on a platform like Udemy. The good thing about publishing online courses that you essentially need to do once and people can find it and purchase it for many years to come. It basically provides you with some sort of a passive income of course, in some cases, it might be really really tiny however in other people make thousands of dollars every single month.
- Tutor them kids. You could also become an online tutor and teach languages to students all around the world on a platform like I talkie or if you want to tutor something else stuff like maths or biology or I don’t know anything else, you could use a platform like prep Li number
- Freelance map, boy. You could also, of course, become a freelancer. It’s kind of similar to having an agency that I described before, just by being a freelancer. You don’t know? Certainly, hire other people to do that service. You do it yourself most freelancers that I know they find their customers on either Upwork, which is the biggest freelancing platform in the world, or fiber, where most of the services are a lot cheaper. But once again, you can do a lot more of them, and it still might make sense.
- Dropship. Another way to make money that’s become quite popular in the past few years is dropship. Dropshipping is basically feeding your online store. And as opposed to selling your own products that you manufacture. They’re basically selling products directly from suppliers warehouses will ship those products directly to your customer every time you make a sale. So most people would create an online store on this platform called Shopify because it’s very cheap and easy to do. And then they would install this application that is called Burlap. So that application would basically connect your store to thousands of different suppliers who would once again ship their products directly to your customers every time you need that sale.
- Become a Librarian…what? Another way that’s worked out for some people is publishing books on Amazon. So if you have some expertise in pretty much anything you can think about, you could try to write some ebooks on Amazon and publish it there and try to sell it for like $2 or $3 or $4 or $5. If it works out, you could eventually hire some other writers to help you do it and maybe even build the business on top of that by having 10s or hundreds of books that are being sold every single month. for years to come.Of course, I will link to all of the companies that I mentioned in the description box below.
Wait a minute, Jakob, I smell a rat in here. How much do those companies paid to mention them or are you a sellout?
And just a disclaimer, it wasn’t sponsored by any of them. I just wanted to give you a better idea of how you could do it or you can do something entirely different. Once again, it doesn’t really matter what you do, as long as you do need to meet people face to face and you can do all of your tasks by having just a computer and a wifi connection. You will be fine.
Part Three: Resources
In order to get even more information, we need to go to part three: resource.
Ever since I decided to make this video, which was many months ago, I started searching for online resources that I could link to. But even though I found many different websites talking about the topic, and obviously hundreds of articles being written, I felt like most of them were actually discussing this sort of lifestyle, and its upsides and downsides, but I didn’t feel like many of them were actually focused on helping people become digital nomads, and obviously find ways to make money remotely so that they could live the same sort of lifestyle.
And after a lot more research and thinking everything through, I decided to write this tiny little ebook that’s called 29 Ways to Quit the Nine to Five and Become a Digital Nomad. Now, I’m really sorry if the name sounds cheesy, it’s a bit cheesy, but that’s exactly what the book is about. Basically, it just listed 29 different ways of how you can make money remotely and obviously have described them in a bit more detail and plus added quite a few different links to other resources or online courses.
There. We’ll help you learn even more you can download this book completely for free at benomad.co/quit-9-5. I’ll link in the description box below.
Well done, mate.
My personal mission in life is to inspire as many people as you can to travel the world because they think in that way the world will be a much more beautiful place, and obviously, if someone can make money remotely then they can travel indefinitely.
So I really hope these resources, especially the book that I wrote specifically for this video, will help you on your way to becoming a digital nomad. And if it does, please let me know it will absolutely make my day.
Thank you very much for watching and always remember: life’s short.