I’m very excited about today’s post! The following article shares the story of Claudia Pennington and her transition from employee, to consultant, to instructor. You can read about her travel experiences at TwoCupHouse.com and explore her courses at SEOAuditGuide.com.
And now, on to Claudia…
For more years than I can remember, I wanted a life of travel. Two weeks of paid vacation just isn’t enough. Having spent much of my career working in non-profit organizations, I hadn’t made a lot of money, so it seemed like I’d have to wait decades before I could spend months traveling.
Telecommuting and entrepreneurship never crossed my mind. I was stuck in an old way of thinking about my life and my career. Too long did I let a job define where I lived and how I used my time.
I read the Four-Hour Workweek and then researched “lifestyle design”
Ten years passed since college graduation and I began to think critically about how I wanted to spend the next decade. I read The Four-Hour Workweek and then researched “lifestyle design” and that’s when we found digital nomads who were living the kind of life my husband and I aspired to live.
Right away, we ran into a couple of problems. My husband and I both had terrestrial, full-time jobs and more than $200k in debt, all of which we knew had to go to become digital nomads. So we developed a plan to eliminate our debt and create opportunities to be self-employed and location independent.
First, we doubled down on increasing our income. I took a better-paying job in digital marketing while Garrett focused on growing revenue in the sales territory for his job. We also started a side hustle in digital marketing and search engine optimization (SEO).
Second, we downsized our home. Knowing that we’d be traveling for months at a time, our home became less important. Living below our means has definitely helped us crush our debt faster.
Third, we outlined a budget/spending plan. Every dollar we could throw at our debt, we did. Consequently, we’re almost debt free two years after we started this journey.
Once we’re debt free, it’s all about increasing our income, investing, and saving for travel.
Because of all the success we’ve had in the first year and a half, I was able to leave my full-time terrestrial job. Today, I work for myself as a digital marketing consultant!
As a digital marketing & SEO consultant, I help businesses and bloggers optimize their websites to increase website traffic and revenue. Whether they are offline or online businesses, I get help small businesses achieve their goals – it’s rewarding work.
As a consultant, I make three to four times more than I did at my day job; I replaced my salary working just one-third of the time.
Digital marketing consulting continues to be my side hustle. Since leaving my job, I began focusing my time and effort on my latest endeavor: helping others become digital marketing & SEO consultants. My digital marketing training courses help aspiring digital nomads start a side hustle or side business in digital marketing and SEO so that they can begin living the lives they’ve only dreamed of.
What I love best about working for myself is that the only thing holding me back or pushing me ahead is me. If I want to increase my income, it’s up to me. If I want to learn a new skill, it’s up to me to make it a priority. If I want to take a day off, I can do that, too.
I know the power and impact that digital marketing has had on my life. I’m nearly debt free and I have a location-independent way to earn money to support a life of travel.
Because I’m well on my way to achieving all that I’ve set out to do, it’s all about helping others. I want to help everyone create massive changes in their lives and the way I can do that is through the transfer of my knowledge and skills. Short of being able to connect my brain to yours, my online training courses will have to suffice! Ha!
Starting our side hustle as a side hustle was critical. While we both worked 9 to 5 jobs, our time was limited. We had to focus on efficiency to make the most of the time we had available. Thus, we focused solely on growing our digital marketing side hustle because it pays well ($75+ per hour).
As a digital marketing nomad, you get to help small business owners. Learn digital marketing. Help a small business grow. That small business is able to hire more employees and increase wages. As a result of your marketing work, you can contribute to economic expansion by way of small business growth. How awesome is that?!
You also get to design your day. Work on your own time, at a rate you desire, and for any number of hours want to hustle. If you want to work at 10 p.m. instead of 10 a.m., you can do that as a consultant. If you want one client, you can help just one client. If you want five clients, you can find five clients. Everything you do is completely up to you.
If you want to hear more about how to start your own side hustle as a digital marketer, sign up for my free email course.