How podcasting changed my life

RVE 233: The final RV Entrepreneur Podcast episode 😕

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After 5 years and 233 episodes, I have recorded the final episode of The RV Entrepreneur podcast.

A little more than seven years ago my friend Sean sat me down right before I married Alyssa and said, “Heath, I love you man. I just want to see you finish something you start. You’re getting married now and have a bigger responsibility than just yourself.”

This was all in regards to our crazy idea to buy an RV and take a year to visit all fifty states. It was a painful, but honest conversation and one that at the moment stung (because it was true) but I was genuinely grateful he shared with me.

For a long time, I struggled to see things through.

I started a new business, only to let it flounder. I got really excited about a business idea only to abandon it by the weekend.

My main goal when we hit the road was to become a person who sees things through.

When I started the RV Entrepreneur podcast in 2016, my goal was to actually see it through and publish 25 or 50 episodes (tbh I’m not sure which number it was), but this week I released episode number 233 — and it’s also my last.

Before sharing the reasons why I wanted to just say thank you to anyone reading this.

Thank you to the 514 people who have left reviews on this show and for everyone who has listened, downloaded, or shared the RV Entrepreneur podcast over the past five years.

Also, for all the people who have taken time out of their day to be a guest or sent thoughtful emails and messages to us sharing what the show has meant to them. As a content creator, I can’t even begin to describe how much that meant to me. It was literally the fuel that kept me going.

In thinking about what I wanted to share from a learnings perspective on the podcast, there are a million things.

But I didn’t want to try and rehash key lessons from 200+ episodes of the podcast, so instead I decided to leave you with the three most meaningful lessons this podcast personally taught me.

My 3 Biggest Takeaways from Hosting the RV Entrepreneur Podcast

#1 You don’t have to be an expert to share helpful advice and make an impact in people’s lives, but you do have to be honest.

One of my biggest fears when starting this podcast was the fact that at the time I was genuinely struggling to figure out business and how it blended with this crazy life we’d chosen. I told Alyssa that I felt like an imposter starting an entrepreneurship podcast when we were barely getting by with our business.

I feared that naming the podcast “RV Entrepreneur” would come off like I was trying to be something I wasn’t or acting like I was further ahead than I was. So instead of trying to act, I just shared where we really were in business.

I posted episodes where Alyssa and I talked about what we were going to name our blog and how much money we were making (or weren’t making) in various endeavors.

In a lot of ways, this approach made everything feel lighter to me. I was never trying to be an expert, I was just trying to be helpful.

This process made me realize that if you’re less concerned with feeling or looking important and more concerned with being helpful — you go further. You don’t have to be an expert, you just have to be honest.

#2 An undiscovered niche feels too small to most people when you first tell them about it.

When I first started this podcast, it seemed like a pretty small number of people would ever care about a business from their RV.

People literally laughed when I told them about the show.

However, I knew from starting our Facebook group that there were at least a handful of people who would really care about the content (or at least I hoped so).

If you’re thinking about creating or starting something and you feel there’s a target group of people out there (even superbly small), I’d encourage you to chase after it and see what happens.

Don’t discount your first-hand knowledge just because it seems unconventional or not proven yet. Prove it.

#3 A fan becomes a friend and subscribers become a community when you bring people together.

One of the best decisions we ever made in regards to this podcast wasn’t actually about the podcast — it was about the decision to bring together this community in person at our RV Entrepreneur Summit in 2017.

Group photo from our inaugural 2017 RVE Summit

This event changed the trajectory of our careers in no small way.

The people we met who had listened to this show became some of our best friends and even business partners. The collective group became a genuine community. Until that moment it was just a podcast with subscribers on a dashboard. The gathering of like-minded people was where the real magic happened.

And as I mentioned at the beginning of this email, we’re putting on our 5th RVE Summit here in Colorado this fall from September 9th through the 12th.

We’d love to have you join us.

We’re hosting boondockers at our soon-to-be a real campground property and we’re going back to our OG 2017 RVE Summit size and only releasing a little more than 100 tickets.

The field at our campground property will be filled soon with RVs! 🙂

 

We already have several awesome speakers lined up like Less Junk More Journey, RV Geeks, Joel Holland of Harvest Hosts, and RV Miles who will be sharing their stories this year at RVE.

If you’re interested in attending this year, you can grab a ticket and learn more here.

Why I Decided to Quit Recording Episodes

In a Facebook group I’m in, someone asked me, “From a content creator’s perspective, why are you ending the show?”

There are a few reasons for wrapping up the podcast.

However, the primary one is that what I’m most excited and passionate about right now isn’t learning how to create a remote business, it’s learning how to create a hospitality experience for our campground.

As an interviewer, what creates energy in a conversation is genuine curiosity. If you’ve ever listened to a boring interview, it’s likely in part due to the fact that the interviewer isn’t actually interested in the person they are talking to.

When someone takes genuine interest in a conversation, they can make even mundane topics interesting.

This interest is what has fueled me over 5 years and 233 episodes. I’ve loved the conversations I’ve had with nomads from all walks of life and learned something from every episode. And this interest and passion is something I’m excited to carry over into what’s next—our campground.

A parting thought on leaving behind something that feels “successful”

Even though I felt strongly it was time to wrap up the podcast, it was still really hard to let it go and took me a couple of months to fully commit to the decision.

The show still has tens of thousands of listeners and I receive regular emails about how meaningful it’s been for nomads and entrepreneurs. Plus, as part of our business, it’s profitable year over year.

Letting it go and moving from focusing on being an RV Entrepreneur to being an RV park owner is a huge shift for Alyssa and me. We’re leaving behind something we know and love for something completely unknown.

Alyssa is working on her second book right now and it shares the story of our first year on the road and how we—not without some speed bumps—actually finished our quest to visit all 50 states. We’ve been talking a lot about that first year on the road and the unparalleled excitement and energy we felt diving into RV life when it was a completely unknown adventure. It was terrifying and thrilling all at once.

That’s the same excitement I feel when I unroll blueprints for our campground and brainstorm ways we can deliver on a modern camping experience. There is so much passion and enthusiasm in every conversation (which is part of the reason we couldn’t wait to host boondockers at an RVE Summit this year!).

Life is short and while it’s easier to stay in our lanes, I don’t think it serves us to do so at the expense of growth and joy.

Again, just want to say thank you to so many of you who have listened to RVE over the years or reached out with a kind note about an episode. This has been an incredibly meaningful chapter for both Alyssa and me and we’re excited to gather with this community again (in person!) this September.

Wishing you all the success,

Heath

4 Responses

  • The RV Entrepreneur Podcast was an incredible resource when I first started RVing & trying to find my way in business. And the first RV Entrepreneur Summit was game changer in terms of connecting with like minded people, learning how to start a business, and how I created a network of friends for life and business partners that I still work with today! Hooray Heath for creating it & hooray for your next chapter!

  • In my experience (with both self and kids) it’s pretty common in your teens and 20s to abandon projects or fizzle out on things you were once passionate about.

    Once I got a little further down the road in life and maturity, I felt like I had to make up for being “flaky.” I became overly conscientious about follow-through, even when it wasn’t in my (or anyone’s, probably) best interest. I stuck things out for way too long.

    It took me like 20 extra years to recognize what you said above in so many words: Filling your days with things that no longer excite or interest you gets in the way of doing your best work…and probably being your best self.

    We were never flaky. We were just 22.

    I’m both sad and excited to see you move on from the podcast.

    When we didn’t know how to make our dream of nomadic life a reality, I stumbled on The RV Entrepreneur book and then the podcast. For a time, I hung on every word I heard. You and your guests inspired and educated me.

    Then, the RVE community and Summit connected Brian and I with our tribe – like-minded people we feel more of a kinship with than anyone else we’ve known in our decades on this planet.

    While I’m 1000% bummed we’re on the other side of the country and missing out on the last Summit, we still have the friends and knowledge we’ve gained from being part of the community you and Alyssa created.

    Thanks & cheers to what’s next! 🍻

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