Full-Time RVing + Building a Brand on the Road | Our Interview with Alyssa Padgett

Business + Marketing, RVing, Travel + Adventure

January 26, 2018

Full-Time RVing + Building a Brand on the Road | Our Interview with Alyssa Padgett

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When Pete first convinced me that we should start off our marriage by living full-time in an RV, I scoured the internet like the type-A perfectionist that I am.

I wanted to know EVERYTHING and ANYTHING about RVing.

What in the world was a black tank? Why did it get such a bad rap?

What kind of RV should we buy?

What in the world do we do about mail or internet on the road?

Thankfully, pretty early into our search, I stumbled across Heath and Alyssa’s blog.

I immediately signed up for their free e-course on how to travel full-time on $2k a month.

From there, I joined their Facebook group, The RV Entrepreneur, and was immediately amazed by the community and business they’ve created.

Not only did it open my eyes to the fact that we weren’t the only crazy ones who wanted to live in an RV full-time, but there was actually a thriving community of young entrepreneurs who are living and working on the road.

Who would’ve thunk!

Now that we’re a few months into full-time RVing, I have to say that the resources and blog posts that Heath and Alyssa share have been hands down some of the MOST helpful information in transitioning to RV life.

A Beginner’s Guide to Living in an RV

Living in an RV Alyssa PadgettHealth and Alyssa work their butts off to create valuable content for others who are looking to transition to full-time RV life and grow a business on the road.

Just one example of this is Alyssa’s new book, A Beginner’s Guide to Living in an RV: Everything I Wish I Knew Before Full-Time RVing Across America.

Guys.

Alyssa went above and beyond with this book (now available on Amazon here!).

Not only is it chock-full of helpful information – from what kind of RV you should buy, to terms you need to know, to how to save money when traveling – but Alyssa also happens to be hilarious.

I sat down with Alyssa to interview her about the launch of her first book on Amazon, her journey of building a brand and business on the road, and what’s next in their RV life.

You can listen to the full-interview below:

 

*Note: We use Screencastify to record our screen during interviews. We have NEVER once had an issue with the video, but unfortunately, this video file was somehow corrupted during export (let’s blame it on RV park internet, shall we?).

I’m super bummed that you can’t watch it in video form, but thankfully their support team was able to extract the audio from the file and save the interview!

So we’re going to roll with it and pretend this is our one and only podcast interview 😉

Alyssa, thank you for taking the time to share your experience and insights!

To make it easier to follow along, I’ll also be sharing some of the highlights of our interview below with timestamps of where you can find that part of our conversation.

RVing to All 50 States

0:29

Alyssa’s RV journey started when she and her then-fiance, Heath, decided to spend their honeymoon traveling to all 50 states.

Dream trip? I think so!

They quickly realized that traveling in an RV would be the cheapest way to make that crazy honeymoon dream a reality.

They purchased and renovated an older Class C motorhome, which took them to 49 of the 50 states (sadly, no RV in Hawaii!).

But this trip wasn’t just for the fun of it.

They wanted a project and purpose for their 50-state roadtrip as well.

Since neither of them were sold on what they’d do after their honeymoon trip, Heath decided he’d work a job in each state as a way of experiencing different opportunities and turn their adventure into a storytelling project.

Finding a Sponsor for their RV Trip

2:25

Right off the bat, Heath and Alyssa were able to secure a sponsor for their project.

Not only did this help them to stay on the road and line up jobs along the way, but it also launched their video production experience.

Their sponsor company sent them some film equipment so that Alyssa could film the experience as Heath worked a job in each state.

Although she knew very little about video production at the time, Alyssa taught herself how to film, edit, and eventually produced a documentary about their project.

You can watch their full documentary, Hourly America, here.

 

hourly america interview

The Motivation Behind Alyssa’s Book Launch

4:47

At the same time that Alyssa was learning videography, she and Heath were creating a TON of content on the road through their blogs.

Eventually, she started answering the same questions over and over againwhich sparked her idea to create a holistic resource on RV life.

She says it stemmed from laziness, I think it stemmed from being smart and seeing an opportunity to serve her audience even better.

You’ll notice a theme with both Heath and Alyssa – they do a REALLY awesome job at listening to their audience and have produced some pretty amazing resources, content, and events based off of real needs as a result.

(Side note: a really sweet example of this is their upcoming RV Entrepreneur Summit we’ll be attending in February!)

Overcoming Fears & Obstacles to Publishing Her Own Book

8:46

Alyssa first set out to write this book in the beginning of 2016, almost two full years before she published it live on Amazon in November 2017.

The original game plan was to launch Alyssa’s book in June of that year, during peak RV season.

She had already worked hard at creating the book in Canva (one of our FAVORITE tools – highly recommend!) and was planning to coordinate the launch of the book with the combination of her and Heath’s separate blogs into HeathandAlyssa.com.

Since the book was a personal project and she hadn’t publicly announced a launch date, Alyssa decided to put her own book on the backburner in order to balance the rest of the projects and launches they had going on at the time.

A year later, Heath encouraged Alyssa to revisit her book idea.

They had been prioritizing their client work and other projects, and it was time to make the book happen.

I can totally appreciate this situation. I feel like as an entrepreneur it’s easy to prioritize the work that is already paying you over the fresh new ideas you have to make money in the future. We fall into this far too often ourselves.

Something I love about Alyssa’s journey is that when she finally decided to publish and share her book, she did it in a really smart way.

Alyssa Padgett RV Life

Photo Credit: Kyle Kesterson

Sharing with Her Audience and Getting Feedback Before Selling

11:35

Even though Alyssa had already written a lot of her content in Canva, she hadn’t let anyone read it – not even Heath! So she set out to get some feedback.

She published the ebook as a free resource on their website and got over 1,000 downloads! From those downloads, she was able to get real constructive feedback and ideas on how she could make the book even better.

Not only did this give Alyssa ideas on what other information she could include, but it started to build up a team of ambassadors for her launch and give her the confidence to publish on a platform like Amazon.

Doubt & Being a Trusted Authority in the RV Industry

13:09

One thing I admire a lot about Alyssa and Heath is that it seems like they are always sharing from a place of transparency and honesty.

In our eyes, especially when we first started our research into RV life, these two were the experts on all things RVing and making money on the road.

Even after full-time RVing for a few years and being a thought leader in her own community online, Alyssa still struggled with doubt and wondering if people would even read her book.

As entrepreneurs, it’s easy to get in our own heads and think that someone else would be better for a certain job or project, but it’s important to keep in mind that it’s all relative.

Imposter syndrome, or feeling like you’re not really an expert or leader in your industry, is something I think a lot of entrepreneurs struggle with. It’s refreshing to know we’re not the only ones who feel this way!

We talk a little about how having people in your corner encouraging you can have a huge impact on getting over this fear of feeling like an imposter.

Setting Goals for Something You’ve Never Done Before

17:25

Alyssa absolutely BLEW her goals out of the water for her book launch.

We talk about how she created her book launch plan and why she put together a launch team (a GENIUS move in my opinion!) to help spread the word.

Alyssa’s launch team strategy is something they modeled off of their previous client projects. So although she had never personally launched a book, she had experiencing coaching other entrepreneurs through their own successful course and book launches.

Alyssa asked a small group of her audience to be her “ambassadors” for her book launch, and she ended up having 50 people commit to being on the Launch Team. This helped give her a huge confidence boost, and it also helped her to set a goal of getting at least those 50 people to review her book in the first month.

Not only did she reach this goal, she far surpassed all of the sales goals she set in record time.

If you want to get inspired to set BIG goals, definitely don’t miss this section!

Staying Transparent and Vulnerable When Sharing Online

23:00

I said it before, and I’ll say it again: Alyssa and Heath do a great job at creating content from a place of authenticity.

They don’t just share the successes (like rocking her book launch and becoming an Amazon Best Selling Author), but they talk openly about their struggles and failures too.

Alyssa shares how one of their best performing blog posts was all about what was going wrong in their lives at the time (you can read her post here!)

It’s an important thing to keep in mind if you’re looking to build a brand, business, or blog online. Transparency, honesty, and vulnerability go a long way when building trust with your audience.

hourly america alyssa and heath padgett

Taking Big Risks and Following Your Dreams… Even When No One Else Gets It

27:46

We talk a lot about how Alyssa and Heath have fostered this amazing community for people who want to transition to full-time RV life, but how did they handle making the transition themselves?

Alyssa shares how she told her family and friends, and it reminds me a lot of how the conversations went when Pete and I first told people we were going to quit our jobs to backpack in 2014.

If you’re in the midst of making a big transition or taking a risk on yourself, don’t miss this part! We’ve all had those friends or family members who thought we were totally crazy for living this lifestyle.

It’s okay; it’s your dream, not theirs.

We also talk about the weird situation of feeling like people actually want you to fail. Maybe you’ve been in the same spot with friends or family, but sometimes when you chase a big dream, it brings out a lot of insecurities or doubts that those people have. It’s almost as if they’ve ignored their own dreams, so they don’t think you should be going after your own.

Alyssa’s Best Advice on Taking Risks & Pursuing Your Dreams

full-time rving and building a brand on the road alyssa padgett

36:00

When you have a big dream, it can feel like the only way to make it happen is to take one HUGE risk or completely change your lifestyle.

Alyssa shares how tackling one big, insurmountable task at a time can make all the difference.

How to Become an Expert in Your Industry

38:49

I love love LOVE this advice.

Personally, I feel like we get so caught up between trying to tackle a billion difference things in our business. Anyone else?!

The advice Alyssa gives for how they have become experts, what they’re going to be focusing on in 2018, and how you can become an expert in your own industry is genius – and so simple.

Focusing on One Thing & Making Sacrifices

41:20

If you’re an entrepreneur, you likely have about a bagillion ideas floating around in your head at all times. It’s great to be a dreamer, but spreading yourself too thin isn’t a great recipe for success.

Speaking from experience here..

In this section, Alyssa talks about what their big focus is going to be in 2018, how they made that decision, and the sacrifices that it often takes to reach your goals.

Why You Should Buy Alyssa’s Book, Living in an RV

47:05

Alyssa’s book is hilarious – and I’m not the only one who thinks so.

Just check out some of her reviews on Amazon!

She has an uncanny ability to make things like insurance and black tanks not only helpful, but entertaining too.

Also, it’s a no brainer cost if you’re at ALL interested in learning more about RV life!

You can buy Alyssa’s Book, Living in an RV, here.

Thank you, Alyssa, for such a fun & inspiring interview!


You can find Alyssa at the following:

Read Heath & Alyssa’s Blog

Join their Facebook Group

Learn from their RV Entrepreneur School

Follow their adventures on Instagram