Hi, I'm JOEL! Here are the cliffs notes:
- I'm the founder of VideoBlocks, and I love the creative community
- I'm on a mission to capture the essence of our awesome country, and share it all for free
- I bought an RV (technically a fifth wheel and a Ford F250 truck), and I love it
- My goal is to travel through, and share, all 49 connected US states (Update: So far I've RV'd over 45,000 miles and visited all lower 48 states!)
Why I love RV'ing America:
I find the easiest way to clear my mind is on an open road. There is something soothing and therapeutic about watching the blur of towns, mountains and landscapes fly past.
Everyone says they love to travel. Makes sense—travel is awesome. I’m on the road about 150 days a year, and love the energy I get from the constant motion and change in environment.
But as our startup really started growing fast last year (hello 130,000 customers and $20M in revenue!), I realized that I needed to step up my creative output to keep our business on the tracks. Hopping on a plane to visit friends and business partners in normal places like NYC/LA/SF wasn’t going to cut it. I needed travel and new cultural experiences.
So I turned to the greatest unexplored part of the world: America. We spend most of our lives as entrepreneurs traversing the major US cities and coasts, while flying over the rest. So I did the only reasonable thing I could think of: I purchased an RV and hit the road.
In the least year and a half I’ve traveled 22,000 miles and seen 28 states, with some unbelievably awesome stuff along the way. Largest cross in the US? Check. A Victorian biker town in the mountains of Arkansas? Check. People of Walmart? Oh yea. NASCAR? A passport should be required to enter some of these tracks—and I love it. Throwing in some epic hiking/biking/camping and exploring, and it has been one of the greatest decisions I’ve made in my 30 years.
With endless miles of driving comes hundreds of hours of alone time for reflection. Just me and the white lines dancing under my truck, while billboards beckon and blow by. Eventually busy thoughts quiet down, and a calm sets in. That’s when I can “zoom out” and think about what we are trying to build at VideoBlocks.
This explosion of unknown, matched with uninterrupted driving time, has been instrumental in not only keeping me sane, but also fueling some incredible creative planning for VideoBlocks. For example, much of the ideation for our radical marketplace where we give 100% of the money back to contributors happened on the road. We flipped our industry on its head, and it worked. Same goes for the creation and launch of AudioBlocks.
You don’t have to buy an RV to experience the wonder of road tripping. Just get in your car and explore this awesome country we live in but have barely seen. You will experience some awesome stuff, and your mind—and business—will thank you.