Dan Andrews on Location Independent Business and Lifestyle – IMP#013

March 29, 2013 , 26 Comments

Many entrepreneurs dream of living the location independent life: travel the world, live wherever you want and run a thriving business – ideally from you laptop, while sitting on an exotic beach, somewhere.

Dan Andrews, our guest in this episode, doesn’t just live this dream; he’s become a leading expert in location independent businesses and has helped dozens (if not hundreds) achieve the same.

In this podcast episode, Dan shares some truly refreshing insights on growing and managing location independent businesses.

Podcast Video

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Podcast Audio

Click here to download the MP3 file.


What’s your take on Dan’s approach to launching an independent lifestyle supporting business? Leave a comment below to share your thoughts and questions!

About ​Shane Melaugh

I'm the founder of ActiveGrowth and Thrive Themes and over the last years, I've created and marketed a dozen different software, information and SaaS products. Apart from running my business, I spend most of my time reading, learning, developing skills and helping other people develop theirs. On ActiveGrowth, I want to help you become a better entrepreneur and product creator. Read more about my story here.

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  • Hi Shane,

    Long time no speak.

    Great that you’re showing many different
    aspects of “the internet”.

    There is no absolute answer,
    and that’s the difficult part for many people
    to get their head around as far as I can see.
    (Which is not far at all.)

    Happy days.



    • Hey Gary! How’s it going? Still in… what was it? South Africa?

      Yeah, there are definitely many, many approaches and that can be a bit overwhelming. Gotta find your fit. I’m loving Dan’s idea, though. I think I could have saved on about a million mistakes I made, by using an approach like that.

  • Yaaa buddy.

    Dan and Ian Rock.

    LBP, Tropical MBA, digital nomads rocking the physical e-commerce model.

    • Haha, another fan, I see! :)

      Where does the “Yeah Buddy!” thing come from, by the way? I only know it from Ronnie Coleman shouting self-motivation before he lifts. And I only know that because I have weird friends.

      • I started saying it because I have a really good friend who said it when he was excited about something and I thought it was cool and just kept doing it. No idea really :)

  • Cool. I really liked that interview Shane, quite inspiring. It’s quite a bit of a different perspective on things compared to what I usually hear in interviews.

    By the way. What are you recording the video portion of your interviews with…just out of curiosity?


    • Thanks for your comment, Davin!

      I recorded this one with GoToMeeting. That’s where the videos are from and then the screen is recorded with Camtasia. Camtasia let me down on this one and recorded a blank channel for Dan’s audio, though. I had to manually sync it up with a backup recording of the audio. I’ll have to examine why that happened, for next time. Basically, let this be a warning: create a backup recording!

      • When that’s happened to me, I either had audio turned off or the wrong audio input selected in Camtasia.

        The recorder should show you levels (on/off test) and if you do a 10 second test you can verify the input.

      • I’ll have to keep that in mind, next time. Thanks for the input!

  • *Very* interesting podcast. I had to listen to the mp3 because for some strange reason the video wasn’t working well.

    The bit about hiring interns was probably the most interesting part. I’m probably past the point where I could work as an intern for Mr. Andrews, even though the location independent business is the Holy Grail to me. Well, part of the Holy Grail, anyway. The other part is passive income. But I will settle for location independent, especially if I can make a living doing fun stuff.

    In a way, I *am* sort of interning. I joined a sort-of “mastermind” group, and managed to work my way into a more exclusive mastermind group, and we regularly trade ideas, strategies, and even occasionally, tactics. So, I’m experimenting with my own money and time, but I’m getting feedback from other folks (who are actually nominally competitors) to help me refine my approach. And then my wife and I go out and test what we have learned, and come up with things to share with our group.

    However, I can see that if I had bitten the bullet back in 2002, when I got laid off from my programming job and couldn’t get work for nearly 5 years, and interned with somebody more successful, I would almost certainly be in a better place now. I think that part of the reason I didn’t was because I had not developed the entrepreneurial mindset at that time.

    But which comes first, the chicken or the egg?

  • awesome indeed shane and Dan keep with the vibes.:).

  • Shane, great job with the interview I really enjoyed it. What program did you use to record your side by side full screen. I noticed that you were also able to add names on the bottom left.

  • Hey Shane,

    Really enjoyed the content, and agree wholeheartedly with the principles shared. I’d much rather grow more slowly and keep my values intact than compromise my integrity to rub elbows with the popular. Personally, don’t care for the swearing, but the content was excellent. Thanks for all the great info!

    – Carol

  • Hi Shane, great podcast yet again!

    So I would like to apply to be an intern in your and Paul’s developing empire.

    I have many skills to bring to the table. The following is a truncated list:

    Formidable intelligence, the ability to read number plates from long distances, determined and untiring work ethic, ability to recall the capital cities of almost every country in the world, ability to travel to Romania at a moments notice, ability to leverage my girlfriend’s credit card for company expenses, the vision to be a lifelong entrepreneur, the desire to be location independent, and the capacity to add value to your ventures.

    In order for this to be a balanced application I suppose I should outline some of my bad points. This list isn’t deliberately truncated although I guess it’s entirely possible that I’ve missed something:

    I’m from New Zealand which means I can be difficult to understand, I can get a little over enthusiastic, I don’t own a smartphone, and my php is shaky at best.

    Let me know what you think and I’ll head to the airport ;)


  • Another great podcast. Thanks Shane for sharing all these info with us!

  • Shane, loved this interview.

    The most important takeaway for me was the bit about who you are actually writing for and advertising to.
    In the IM world, we’re obsessed with content that serves one purpose: Link bait. We want thousands of links, likes and tweets about our content because it makes us feel warm and fuzzy inside.

    The problem is that 95% of the people who do talk about your content stop right there and probably won’t buy from you simply because they’ve seen your content.

    I always try to keep this in mind when “building a list” and writing content for my readers. I feel like my most important subscribers are CUSTOMERS of mine (since we do web design and stuff) which are generally small business owners who I genuinely feel I can provide expert advice to.

    They’re the people who I email manually to say “Hey Shane, you know that question you had about XYZ? I thought it best to explain it in a blog post so that others like you can learn about that too. You can see the piece I wrote here on my blog…”

    The best content I’ve ever written has stemmed from emails I’ve received from those same customers with genuine questions about my field of work. If I’m writing a post that will solve the problems of just five of my clients, then that post is worth the time spent, regardless of whether 100 people share my post on Facebook.

    Case in point: I recently wrote a 6-part series on Joomla! vs WordPress for Sitepoint.com and followed it up with an infographic on my own blog. The series was inspired by my own clients in South Africa who weren’t sure what CMS to choose when their choice was between WP and Joomla.
    What happened was that I took a huge amount of flak from people who were outraged that I hadn’t included the likes of Drupal in my comparison, as well as major flak from biased users of any one CMS. To be honest, I knew this was going to happen and produced the content as is regardless of the chatter I picked up from around the internet.

    Why? Because it answered the questions of the people who are actually interested in my services!

    So yeah, that comment by Dan really resonated with me. I’m glad to see my beliefs reinforced. Thanks for a great interview!

    Side note: Picking up links and shares as a result of your content is never a bad thing, but I feel it should be a secondary objective. Funnily enough, my infographic picked up a whole lot of links from the WP community who were outraged that I could even suggest that Joomla is comparable to WordPress. I’m not complaining. Any publicity is good publicity, right? ;)


    • Awesome example, Mark!

      It’s the same with me: a lot of the content on this site originates from customer and reader interaction. I rarely set out to write a post because I think it will get lots of shares or something like that.

      I have to admit that I find it really difficult to avoid falling for vanity metrics. I know they’re useless, but they’re omnipresent and hard to ignore. Dan’s example was a great reminder. It’s better to write a post that gets one like and results in a business with 600 members than it is to write a post that gets 1,000 likes, but nothing else.

      And concerning your controversial content: I think that’s awesome. When you make bold statements, you’re bound to rub some people the wrong way and that’s a good thing. You can join the masses of the politically correct and make sure to never offend anyone, but who would you be serving with that?

  • I loved this interview. I’m a fan of the Tropical MBA and listen to those guys’ podcast periodically. My main take-away from this interview was the point about the “silent majority”. I have to definitely remember to keep these folks in mind with everything that I do online.

  • One of the things that Dan said was awesome. You have to have a Clear belief and point of view.

    That was probably the most significant point that Dan made that resonated with me.

    Great podcast.

  • Niall Roche says:

    That’s possibly one of the most valuable podcasts I’ve ever seen!

    “Owning your time and surviving long enough to let something mature.”

    That summed up the last 2 years of my life better than I ever could!

    • Cheers Niall appreciate that. Here’s to stayin’ in the game!

  • Great interview Shane!

    I’m part of the silent majority with Dan and Ian @ the TMBA & LBP.

    I had to look back on youtube to Dan’s flash-packing video on youtube, which was 3 yrs ago. That’s where I first ran into him and have been following their podcasts ever since. I can’t believe it’s been that long.

    I’m also a hybrid connect customer and am stoked to discover you have an entrepreneurship/marketing podcast. Looking forward to exploring it more. By the way my weekly average opt in rates doubled after I started using your plugin about 3 months ago. I love how easy it is to use and how great the forms look.

    My favorite part of this interview was the part about the importance of cutting your chops, the long term approach, and really focusing on a quality audience that you’re very real and share clear beliefs with.

    Keep up the great work fellas!

    Thanks for sharing so much with the entrepreneurship community.

    • Hi Chris,

      Thanks for your comment! I’m stoked to see you got such a great result with Hybrid! That’s totally awesome. :)

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