Are You Ready to Run Backpacker Travel?

I’ve considered writing this post for some time now but been sitting on it, mostly out of fear. I created the original version of this site back in 2014. Back then it was nothing more than a travel blog I created due to the rapid growth of the Backpacker Travel Facebook page which focussed on travel inspiration. Since then, there have been numerous iterations that have all been brought about by you – the backpacking community.

Along the way, I’ve been fortunate enough to have some amazing people contribute their time, efforts, and content to help in making the website you see here today but ultimately the lion’s share has fallen on my shoulders. I’ve spent countless hours tweaking the layout, adding features and writing content in the hopes of reaching like-minded travelers and helping them see the world.

What you might not know is that I’ve been doing this all while working as a tour guide for a small private walking tour company I started here in San Francisco. Yup, during the day you’ll find me taking visitors off-the-beaten-path in the city by the bay and I absolutely love it!

Unfortunately, this conflict has come at the detriment of both businesses. I’ve never been able to dedicate enough time to either one in a meaningful way that will see each business truly succeed.

This month I will be launching my tours in Vancouver. I’ve always dreamed of operating an international travel business and this is a giant step towards fulfilling that dream.

Some months ago I asked a friend and mentor of mine for advice on which direction to take. Chip Conley founded Joie de Vivre Hospitality and more recently worked as the Head of Global Hospitality and Strategy at Airbnb. His advice to me was simple, focus on one business and dedicate your entire being to it.

This brings me to the fear part….

As an entrepreneur, you pour your heart and soul into whatever project you are working on. It becomes your baby, your child. You do everything that you can to help it grow, to set it up for success. There are highs and lows, trials and tribulations, frustration and elation. You can never imagine putting your child up for adoption.

I’ve considered looking for a co-founder for over a year now but that fear of losing my child has always held me back. How do you find the right person who will love and care for it the same way that you do? This week it dawned on me that I’ve been looking at the situation all wrong

This week it dawned on me that I’ve been looking at the situation all wrong. I realized that it is, in fact, me who is doing the holding back. By not dedicating 100% of my time I’m not allowing the Backpacker Travel site to grow to its full potential and that’s possibly worse.

Let the search begin

Today, I begin the search for a co-founder. Someone who is so passionate about backpacking that they are willing to do anything it takes to achieve their goals. Someone who shares my vision in creating the ultimate resource for adventurous travelers. Someone who not only sees the potential but has the drive and ambition to do everything (and anything) it takes to succeed!

Will it be you?

I want to be very very clear, this opportunity is not for everyone. In fact, there’s probably only a handful of people who’ve got what it takes to truly kick this into high gear so if you can’t be 100% committed, it’s probably best not applying.

I implore you to pass this on to anyone you think might be up for the challenge too. The wider the net cast, the higher the quality fish caught.

Do you fit the bill?

It goes without saying that you will be a need to be a native English speaker but you will also need a keen eye for detail. I can’t tell you how many job applications I’ve received over the years with horrendous spelling and grammatical errors. Needless to say, anyone wishing to join me as a co-founder will need to have an excellent grasp of the written word and be able to convey a story in an interesting and entertaining fashion.

Backpacker Travel will need to be your primary focus. To be successful you will need to completely dedicate your time and energy to the role. Remember, this is the perfect opportunity to build and grow an online business that will allow you the freedom to set your own hours, work remotely and be rewarded for your hard work.

If you already have a 9-5 job and looking for a side gig, this isn’t for you. If you’re traveling and looking for some cash on the side, this isn’t for you either.

I’m interested, what will I be doing?

In creating any ‘ultimate resource’ there are going to be a lot of moving parts. Have a good look around this site and you will discover a LOT of content. Through member feedback, you’ll help to distill all this information so people can easily navigate and find exactly what they need, when they need it.

The biggest reason Backpacker Travel has not exploded in popularity is because no one knows about it. That’s a really hard thing for me to admit but it’s the honest truth. Sure, we have over 150,000 followers across our social media and thousands of registered members, but I have done a poor job in reaching them and realistically the numbers should be a LOT bigger.

Your primary goal will be to increase the visibility of the site and improve the reputation of the Backpacker Travel brand. Conquer this while consistently providing valuable content for the reader is the secret key to your success.

But wait….. there’s a lot more that goes into it. Below is a list of tasks that you will either directly, or indirectly have an impact on:

  • Help in creating the social media calendar
  • Interview and hire prospective contractors and interns
  • Know how to write, curate, schedule, and promote social content
  • Help manage member content including photos, videos, and interviews
  • Create and schedule the weekly newsletter and other email outreach
  • Regularly research and write new content
  • Edit guest posts and sponsored articles
  • Assist with sales outreach
  • Manage and lead partnership specialists
  • Manage travel offers
  • Work closely with affiliates
  • Manage and teach content creator
  • Growth-hack to increase Backpacker Travel brand awareness and increase member sign-ups
  • Research and review backpacker-related products and services
  • Create and manage SEO tactics and keyword optimization
  • Assist with building and maintaining new and existing relationships with other publishers

It’s a long list but you most certainly won’t be alone. I’m here to help at every step of the way.

How do I apply?

If you’ve read this far you might just be the person I’m looking for. If you are truly interested in running Backpacker Travel I want to hear from you. Send me an email to [email protected] outlining why you think I should take you on as a co-founder. Please include a short summary of the actions you would take to grow the backpacker brand name.

Be creative! 

If shortlisted, you will be asked to do a trial run over a 1 month period. During this time you will get a chance to see the ins and outs of the business and show that you have the passion, ambition and drive to run the show!

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One thought on “Are You Ready to Run Backpacker Travel?

  1. Grace MACharia

    Hi Michael, I am interested to fill the position as I Have what it TAKES to be a co founder. I am detailed and have a passion to travel.

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