What It's About
An online community for female digital nomads.
Words of Wisdom
Running a membership site isn't like a course or one-off program. It is ever evolving. Jenny experiments with different offerings to see what works best for her members. She has found that the “live” components, like virtual coworking and online socials, are especially valuable to her members, who crave that personal connection while traveling.
A 1997 book titled ‘The Digital Nomad’ prophesied the invention of the mobile phone and is the first recorded use of the term “digital nomad.”
Notes from Chris
Episode 800Jenny Lachs started her career in Germany by earning a PhD in organic chemistry. But before long, she realized that research and academia wasn’t the path she wanted to follow. At the time, all of her friends were PhD students as well. They thought she had lost her mind when she decided to completely change paths. Although it wasn’t easy to go against the grain, Jenny believed another life was possible for herself. Three years earlier, she had taken a solo trip to Israel where she met people who were traveling for months and years on end. After finishing the final years of her PhD and saving all the money she could, Jenny embarked on an around-the-world trip with her boyfriend. When funds got low seven months in, she spent a year working in Australia on a working holiday visa, which involved all sorts of random day jobs. It was during this time that she came across people working online. Eager to keep seeing the world, Jenny challenged herself to try out any online work she could find to see whether she liked it, was good at it, and could make money from it. Writing and social media management are “location independent” jobs. In other words, there’s no need to be physically present in an office. As long as she has her laptop and a wifi connection, Jenny can continue working from anywhere in the world. In the first few months of becoming a digital nomad, Jenny found herself living and working from a beautiful island in Thailand. But something was missing. She was lonely. Jenny knew if she wanted this new lifestyle to be sustainable, she needed to surround herself with others who shared the same dreams and values. She joined online business communities but didn’t find them to be as supportive as she hoped. Most of the loudest voices on the scene tended to be male, earning themselves the term “bromads.” But people pursue location independence for different reasons, and many didn’t identify with that bromad culture that had developed. Jenny noticed a real need for a community where women could exchange stories, learn from each other, and support each other. So as a passion project, she started an online community called Digital Nomad Girls. She launched a Facebook Group and invited the women she'd met on the road to join. They added their friends, and the community took off. The group grew steadily and 100% organically. Two years later, with the Facebook community still going strong, Jenny launched a membership site for Digital Nomad Girls called the Inner Circle. When the first person joined the Inner Circle, Jenny remembers dancing around her apartment like a maniac. She had a custom button sent to the woman—who was also one of her retreat alumni—and then went out to a celebratory dinner with her boyfriend. The membership site was a game changer. It brought in steady, recurring income of $22,000 annually. With nearly 20,000 members of the free Facebook community and roughly 130 Inner Circle members, income from Digital Nomad Girls is expected to more than triple this year. As Jenny reflects on the leap she made to turn her passion project into a business, she is deeply grateful. “Creating something from scratch that helps people, supports me and my lifestyle and allows me to experiment, try new things and learn new skills is incredible,” she says. The PhD in organic chemistry feels like a lifetime ago.
MENTIONED IN THIS EPISODE:
- Digital Nomad Girls: If you're living that digital nomad life and you'd like to join a supportful community of women located all over the world, head on over to Jenny's website!
- Wordpress: Jenny used Wordpress to setup Digital Nomad Girls, and here you can learn how to install your own Wordpress site in 5 minutes
- MemberPress: The easy to use WordPress membership plugin that Jenny uses to manage her memberships
- Zoom: The video communication platform that Jenny uses with her community
- Pathetic Triathlete Creates $30,000 Facebook Group: Frustrated with snobby and overly-serious triathletes, a man creates a Facebook group for more casual and fun discussion. It then transforms into a $30,000 side hustle with tens of thousands of members
- Rogue Financial Analyst Earns $34,000 from Golf Membership Site: After losing his job, moving to Thailand, and starting a new career, this former financial analyst creates a golf membership site that currently earns $2,800/month in recurring, passive income
- PE Teacher Makes $11,000 with Membership Site: A PE teacher starts a blog that makes more than $11,000 through a sustainable revenue model that will likely grow with each passing month
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