AMA: Ask Me Anything Digital Nomads

by - May 01, 2018

For a few years now, journalists have been describing digital nomads as people who’ve landed the dream job. They travel through the world, one contract at a time, making money as they go. Headlines such as ‘every day in a new country’ feel appealing, but what is the reality of a digital nomad’s life. Whether you're considering quitting your day-to-day job to experience the world as it is and sell your services online as a freelancer or whether you simply want to debunk the myth of eternal freedom about this peculiar lifestyle, you’ll find here 7 of the most common questions that people ask about digital nomads with their answers. Of course, it’s fair to say that every story is different. This doesn’t pretend to be the ultimate and only truth, but all-in-one, this portrait of the life of a digital nomad is the most common experience for freelancers who’ve got itchy feet! Here’s the official, AMA Digital nomads.

#1. Where are you staying?
Digital nomads do travel a lot, picking the next destination via a variety of factors. Firstly, it’s fair to say that everyone has a bucket list of their favourite places to visit. But there are also plenty of online tips and materials available to digital nomads to help them pick a place that is affordable and safe. According to Nomadist, for instance, Bangko is the preferred city to live, work and play for over 52,000 nomads. But other factors need to be taken into consideration, such as the destinations available at your local airport or train station as well as the difficulties to obtain a visa for certain countries. As a result, you’ll find that most destinations are picked based on cost, accessibility, and personal preferences. As a digital nomad can stay for an extended period, ranging from a handful of weeks up to several months, it’s key to find the best accommodation for their needs. Hotel rooms and youth hostels are not an option when you need to find a quiet and affordable place to work. However, a service apartment offers the appropriate level of commodities and privacy. You can organize tenancy agreements for short periods – one month – and extended stays, so that it’s a fantastic option. Ultimately, a furnished bedroom with a friendly landlord can be a good idea too if you want to get to know the locals.

#2. Wait, how do you make your living?
The clue is in the name. A digital nomad works essentially online – although some prep work might occur offline too. Consequently, it’s crucial to secure a digital space to promote their services and experience. You might be thinking that a LinkedIn profile and social media accounts are good enough, but for digital nomads, a website is mandatory. It’s the space where they can keep their portfolio updated and share their most recent news through the blog. That’s precisely why it’s essential to develop a strong SEO strategy to be able to attract new potential clients over time. Additionally, a presence on freelancing platforms and the use of PPC can also increase the chances of finding and acquiring new clients.

#3. What about getting noticed?
There is more than one digital nomad, and more than one expert for each digital skill. Successful digital nomads need to create strategies to promote their business. More often than not, viral content can make a great deal of difference in the long term. For digital nomads, a viral vlog – video blog – can attract international attention and be a fantastic platform to reach out to a new audience. Most viral videos tend to be either music videos, children video, funny animals or mishaps, celebrity-focused or plain inappropriate. But within these limits, there’s always room for creativity, such as creating a funny video that actually describes your skills. Similarly, a viral article on a blog can get you noticed too.

#4. But what happens when you get paid?
When it comes to practical matters, it can be difficult for someone who is employed or who isn’t a nomad to imagine what happens with the income of a digital nomad. To the question, do they pay taxes, the answer is yes. For British digital nomad, it can be more difficult to become a tax non-resident, but if you are lucky enough to get a second residency elsewhere, you can use that as a backup plan.

#5. Do you have a niche?
What is a niche and why do you need the right one? The answer here is straightforward. Digital nomads are up against a lot of competition, from local experts and other nomads. As a result, it is essential to find the market areas where the competition is at the lowest. That’s your niche. There’s no need to limit your skills to one niche only. Most nomads run several websites at the same time so that they can maximize the advantage of running multiple niches.

#6. Doesn’t it get lonely?
Do digital nomads feel lonely from time to time? It’s a tricky question as most people confuse solitude and loneliness. Digital nomads are often alone on their travels. As part of their peculiar professional situation, nomads need to know how to appreciate their own company. But, being alone doesn’t mean you can’t meet new people. In fact, most nomads get to know the locals where they choose to stop and make new friends relatively rapidly. Why so? Because discovering new cultures every day makes you more open-minded and sociable.

#7. How long do you stay?
Interesting enough, this is the question that is the most difficult to address for digital nomads. Every place is different, and nobody has the same needs. In other words, people stay for a different period of time, depending on where they are in the world and what they want to do. The ideal duration in each new location is between 3 and 6 months, which gives you enough time to explore. But some nomads stay only a couple of weeks while others spend several years in the same place.

Hopefully, this quick overview of the digital nomad lifestyle can answer most of your questions and help you understand what animates these modern explorers.

As always don't forget to share and subscribe! Until next time thanks for reading!

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