May 30, 2016

One Week at the Lake

After visiting Barcelona for a month, attending the Wikipedia conference in Berlin, and hosting the Raleigh SEO Meetup Conference - I'm spending a week at my lake property. Perhaps you read about The Lake Royale Project that I announced last year. Essentially, I have been able to build this business and live a life of location independence and international travel because I'm on a path toward financial independence. Here's an update on my project at Lake Royale.

It has been one year since my wife and I moved to our property at Lake Royale, and there have been a lot of major changes in our lives. I now have a home near Raleigh and another in the mountains, my wife has returned to school, and I have had some early success with my first clients.

Lake Royale tiki bar and speed boat

Second Home in the Mountains

My current lifestyle takes me to Cullowhee, Asheville, and Raleigh every month. When I tallied the days I spend in each of these cities, I found that I spend about two weeks each month in rural town of Cullowhee, NC. Since my weekends are spent with friends and family in Asheville, this adds up to another week each month. One more week each month is spent organizing events and building my professional network in Raleigh, NC.

When I'm in Raleigh, I stay at my place at Lake Royale. This gives me the opportunity to coordinate my own conferences and attend professional networking events in the Research Triangle. Additionally, I have an opportunity to relax by the lake, go fishing, and paddle around in my canoe.

During the time I spend in the mountains of Western North Carolina, in Asheville and Cullowhee, I stay at an apartment I'm renting there while my wife is in school. Since my work is only tied to an internet connection, there is nothing stopping me form living and working anywhere in the world. Actually, I am able to focus on my work even more during the time I am in Cullowhee because there are fewer networking opportunities. Although, there are also some amazing mountain rivers and streams that entice me to spend some time fly fishing.

Returning to School

When my wife and I moved to our place at Lake Royale, it became possible for us to live on only my income. Since she didn't like the job she had, my wife quit and spent some time considering her next move. After a month of relaxing at the lake with nothing to do, she decided that wasn't as fun as you may think - and enrolled in a Molecular Biology program to return to college. She must love the topic she is studying because she spends a lot of time at school and is getting good grades. It's amazing how much easier it is to dedicate your time and energy to something when you truly love what you're doing.

Early Success - 10X and 24X

After moving to the lake, I began working in a broad range of internet marketing fields. Since I had created a runway for my business which allowed me to focus on serving clients rather than just earning money, I was able to observe the market and pivot as needed. As I started building this business, I helped clients with SEO, content creation, and eventually consulting on content marketing. Each time I pivoted because I learned something new about the market and the clients I was serving.

At first, I just took any internet marketing job that came my way. Then I identified people that needed help with search engine optimization (SEO). As I worked with these clients, it became clear that content creation was a major stumbling block for many clients. After pivoting to help with content creation, I noticed that many of my clients knew they needed content but didn't know what to do with it to grow their business. This inspired me to help them with developing content marketing strategies. This lead me to the realization that many businesses have not fully developed their offer.

Many businesses don't have a clear picture of the products and services they can provide for their audience. This is how I found the best way I can help clients.

You know how some people are great at building an audience online. They have lots of visitors coming to their website, blog, or social media account - but they're not making very much money from their effort. Well, I help entrepreneurs with an audience make more money. If you want to learn more about how I do this, check out my case study about helping one client 10x their income in just three months.

This Week at Lake Royale

I'm currently spending a week at Lake Royale between my return from Barcelona and my scheduled speaking engagement at the NC Tech 4 Good Conference in Chapel Hill. During this time, I have meetings with clients which I will attend online, networking events throughout the Research Triangle, and some time set aside for fishing at the lake. It has taken a significant amount of work and dedication to create this lifestyle, but I'm beginning to see the benefits of the choices I made years ago.

2 comments on “One Week at the Lake”

  1. Interesting story you have going here.

    I too have a house at the lake when I am not traveling the world for my job.

    I took a bit of a different tack, but I am interested to connect with you.

    I too like Barcelona. One of the lowest customers places to get a good meal and decent wine in Europe.


    1. Ken,

      It would be great to connect with you when we are both at the lake. Currently, I'm spending only one week each month at Lake Royale until my wife graduates in December. We're planning to be back at the lake full-time in 2018. However, we still have not decided what full-time will actually mean. We have been considering a few places where we could spend the winter months in a warmer climate. I'll email you to see if we could meet for lunch the next time I am at the lake.

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