Today we’d like to introduce you to Julie and Marc Bennett.
So, before we jump into specific questions about the business, why don’t you give us some details about you and your story.
Our story began in the summer of 2010 when we met online via the dating website eHarmony. Julie had moved to Boulder, CO from Sydney, Australia to start her life over after the global economic crisis. Marc was a Colorado native who grew up in Golden, CO. Being around the age of 40, we had both been through our share of challenges and were looking for a more compatible partner to share the next phase of our life’s adventures with. We clicked immediately and had a really fun and romantic relationship that progressed very quickly! We just “knew” we were meant to be together, and to quote from the movie “When Harry Met Sally”… “when you realize you want to spend the rest of your life with somebody, you want the rest of your life to start as soon as possible.” We were married in less than a year.
We moved into a nice townhome in a nice neighborhood in Bradburn Village, Westminster, CO and life were… well… nice! We had nice cars, a nice home, nice friends, decent jobs, and a nice life. But we weren’t inspired by our daily commutes and cubicle jobs. Our family and friends always seemed too busy to get together much. Ultimately, we wanted to be able to spend more time together. We wanted more time with our dog Coda (we don’t have kids). And we wanted to travel more. A lot more.
We didn’t just want a regular, suburban life living in one place. We wanted more experiences and more opportunities to expand and grow… individually and as a couple. We wanted to visit more places, meet more people, and experience different cultures. And we wanted all of that on a much greater level than the typical one or two vacations a year would allow.
So, we came up with a “not so normal” idea. Why not sell everything, buy an RV (a motorhome), hit the road and live, work and travel from the road? It seemed crazy at the time, but we started exploring all of our options, researching IF this was even possible, and HOW!? After all, we were still working and not even close to retirement age. But we didn’t want to have to wait that long to really start living our lives more fully. After all, tomorrow is promised to no-one.
As it turns out, we were able to pull it off. Now – almost five years later – it’s hard for us to imagine living any other way. Since we sold our townhome and hit the road back in June 2014, we have traveled to all 50 USA states, plus Canada, Mexico, and Australia. We’re still going, with no end in sight! We began sharing our adventures and learnings on our blog, YouTube channel and social media… and all of that really opened up our world in unimaginable ways. We took a huge risk when we made that decision, but it’s literally changed our lives in every way.
We’re always bombarded by how great it is to pursue your passion, etc. – but we’ve spoken with enough people to know that it’s not always easy. Overall, would you say things have been easy for you?
There have been many bumps in the road, and many twists and turns along the way! When we started out, we had very limited experience RVing, so our initial learning curve was steep. We dove in boots and all, immersing ourselves into learning everything we could about the RV lifestyle, how to stay connected to the internet. How we could work from the road, how to get our mail, and what kind of RV to buy. There was SO much to learn, we didn’t know anyone else that we could ask about it. And it was almost a full-time job just trying to make sense of it all. It was like drinking from a firehose, and we soaked up as much as we could. But it was often times overwhelming, extremely time-consuming, and being newbies, we often second-guessed ourselves and our decisions. Of course, we also had to deal with the reactions of others – understandably, not everybody thought it was a good idea… as we did!
Then there was the emotional challenge of selling our home and downsizing most of our possessions. Selling the townhome was especially difficult for Julie. It represented a sense of security, which was really important to her. After all, she had moved to the USA after losing everything she’d worked her whole life for in Australia when the economy – and her business – tanked. But experiences were calling us louder than our “stuff” was… and we found that letting a lot of it was, in fact, very liberating. Somehow, we felt lighter. Life became simpler, less complex. And that felt good.
But still, the questions and self-doubts persisted. Were we crazy? Were we doing the right thing? Would we regret it? What if we hated it? We just stayed focused on what we would be gaining in our lives, instead of what we were leaving behind. And would we regret NOT doing it, even more!
Of course, RVs are known for having issues, and constantly needing to be maintained and fixed. They are rolling earthquakes. And it definitely helps to be handy.
We bought a fairly new RV – just two years old and a respected, quality brand. But we discovered a propane leak, shredded a tire on our tow dolly, and the RV entry door handle broke off in Marc’s hand – all within the first few weeks. That’s RV life. There’s always going to be something to deal with, but we’ve come to embrace it all as part of the adventure.
We haven’t been faced with anything we couldn’t handle. And we’ve learned that being prepared – with things like good roadside assistance with towing, an extended service contract and the right insurance – and above all, keeping a positive attitude and a sense of humor… will get you through most situations.
So, as you know, we’re impressed with RV Love – tell our readers more, for example, what you’re most proud of and what sets you apart from others.
RVLove started out as side labor of love and has since grown into a thriving and inspiring RV lifestyle brand and community. Now, both of us work on RVLove full-time, to create quality content that inspires and educates others about the RV life, and help make their road to RVing much smoother.
Reading our blog (http://www.RVLove.com), watching our YouTube videos (http://www.youtube.com/rvlove) and following us on social media (Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and Pinterest) really gives people a chance to get to know – and trust – us and our content. That’s what has really created such our amazing community of RVLovers.
This led to us launching an online school for wannabe RVers in May 2017 called “RV Success School” (http://www.rvsuccessschool.com). It was the first of its kind in the RV space, offering self-paced, guided learning, with courses like “Hit the Road the Right Way” and “Choosing the Right RV for You.” Through that, we’ve been able to help a lot of people save tens of thousands of dollars, avoid expensive mistakes, and help them hit the road with confidence.
Then in 2018, a major publisher (Adams Media, a division of Simon and Schuster) reached out to us and asked us to write “the roadmap to the mobile life”, in response to the surging popularity of RVing and the lack of quality books about the subject. It was an amazing opportunity, but we had a REALLY short timeline, so we dove right into writing it, pulling together case studies, useful resources and hundreds of photographs to accompany the text.
“Living the RV Life – Your Ultimate Guide to Life on the Road” (http://www.rvlove.com/book) was released in November 2018 nationally – in Costco warehouses, on Amazon, at Books-a-Million, The Tattered Cover, and other independent bookstores. It was even featured as a recommended title at Boulder Bookstore and on the front tables of many Barnes & Noble locations.
We made sure we were in Colorado for the book launch, before making our way to Florida for the winter. It was truly surreal seeing our book in big piles at our local Costco, meeting people who were buying our book in the stores, and autographing copies for them. We both agree that was our proudest moment. Seeing our book in print, in bookstores, seeing it get such rave reviews, and above all, knowing it was helping so many people.
Fun fact: when we were planning for our RV life years ago, Marc’s (then) 97-year-old Grandma Jeanne punched him in the arm and said: “you just get out there and do it!” So, being able to visit Grandma Jeanne at age 101 and present her with an autographed, printed copy of our book was definitely one of our proudest moments.
Every day, we get messages from people on social media, email, or in person… saying “thank you” for the content we have created and shared. Content that has helped that change their lives in a positive way. And inspired and helped them to hit the road in an RV, and design a lifestyle that works for them. Giving them the courage and confidence to know they can do it too. That’s definitely something we are proud of. Knowing that we’ve been a positive instrument of change in someones else’s life. And created the resources that empower them to do it… and do it well.
What sets us apart from others? A few things…
1. Creating quality content
2. Love for each other and what we do
3. Success measured by our joy and living in alignment with our values
So, what’s next? Any big plans?
Our first few years on the road were filled with a lot of travel, fun, and adventure! We explored National parks, went hiking and biking, saw loads of sunsets, and made a lot of new friends. We filled all of the stickers on our state sticker map, and really lived and loved the RV life we had dreamed of. The last two years were different, as we focused more on work while building our business. Building our online school, writing the book, filming for a movie, we even switched our RV and did a complete remodel on it. All of this on top of producing our regular content. Our lives definitely got out of balance, and our travels slowed down too.
Now, as of 2019, we have hit the reset button, slowed our pace, and are back to enjoying a lot more travel. We love to drive – whether it’s in our RV or Jeep – so we’re doing more road trips, scenic drives, seeing new places, and revisiting some of our past favorites. And spending more quality time together. We know that probably sounds weird to a lot of people as we’ve been together 24/7 for the past five years. But when you live AND work together, it’s important to switch off from work, unplug from technology, and just focus on playing and having fun… as a couple. That’s the juice that keeps the love alive in everything we do.
Of course, we also want to continue expanding our reach for RVLove and getting our message out there to more people. Inspiring them to really embrace life… find more courage and adventure… whether that’s in an RV or not. Helping you think differently about creative ways to live, that is aligned with your values and what you want MORE of. Instead of just living a life society tells you that you are “supposed” to live.
So, what big changes are ahead? We’re not exactly sure yet. We have some interesting irons in the fire right now… some exciting opportunities that have the potential to help us reach a lot more people. So, we’re just waiting to see which one strikes hot… and if it feels right and aligns with our values, we’ll go for it!
- “Living the RV Life” Book: $22.99 for print, $16.99 for digital
- Online Courses: Start at $29, Value Bundle is $197
- Private Consulting: $149 for a one hour session
- Website: https://www.rvlove.com
- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Instagram: http://www.instagram.com/rvlovetravel
- Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/rvlovetv
- Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/rvlovetravel
- Other: https://www.rvsuccessschool.com
GabrielaPhoto.com, Julie Bennett, Marc Bennett