Rachel Hernandez – How the Mobile Home Gurl Pivoted From A Free to a Paid Membership

Welcome to another episode of the Plutus Awards Podcast. Our community is filled with hundreds of stories from creators and entrepreneurs just like you. And through this show we share these stories of challenges and successes from bloggers to podcasters from writers, speakers and more. I’m your host, Michelle Jackson.

Plutus Awards Podcast - Mobile Home Gurl Cover

Today’s guest is Rachel Hernandez, The Mobile Home Gurl. In this episode Rachel and I talk about listening to what your audience tells you they want, leaning into your authority, and how making mistakes helps content creators find the right products and services for their brand.

How the Mobile Home Gurl Pivoted From A Free to a Paid Membership

Notes and summary from this episode

● Rachel Hernandez- Who started her project in 2007 and currently runs Adventures in Mobile Homes

● How has creating content online changed since 2007?
○ Focus was on blogging, written content
○ Now the content is very interactive
○ And Rachel admits that she was late to the game with social media
○ People are more interested in seeing the content creators up front via video/etc.

● Are Blogs Dead? No, they aren’t. But, those blogs have a tight community and loyal following. The bloggers who are the most successful tend to be the most transparent in the personal finance space.

● What has been important about “story in content creation” vs. leaning into SEO?

● Rachel shares a disclaimer that she’s not an expert in SEO

● Anyone can share generic content but telling a story around a topic, it’s so much more interesting to people.

● How did Rachel get involved in Mobile Home Investing? She read Rich Dad, Poor Dad and started in single family homes via Bird Dogging and Single Home Investing.

● Found that she didn’t enjoy single home investing and she decided to sell her entire portfolio of homes and decided to do mobile home investing instead.

● I wonder what Bird Dogging is? It’s basically becoming a property scout for other real estate investors

● I decided to ask an awkward question “Why mobile homes? Vs. single family units”

● Rachel is very kind about addressing my question and clarifies that there are several different types of mobile home communities
○ Low-end
○ Middle of the road
○ High end

● Initially, Rachel did deals across different types of communities and now focuses on high end properties

● How did Rachel create community in her niche? A lot of trial and error.

● Rachel started doing affiliates and experimented with different ways to monetize her brand.

● She got tired of the hustle even though she was getting ad revenue and was looking for a way to make things easier.

● Rachel began focusing on building authority to help your brand stand out.

● She wrote a book 2012 “Adventures in Mobile Homes”

● People began to go to her website because of the book and other opportunities began to open up.

● Prior to her content creation life, Rachel was a sales executive and enjoys networking and speaking-focused opportunities that enable her to lean into the skills that she developed as a sales executive.

● Events that helped grow her brand were FinCon2015 and the Plutus Impact Summit 2021

● Rachel self-published her book and I wonder how people found her book?

● She decided that she wanted control over her book and in the future she would revisit that decision. Rachel did a lot of guest posts.

● What was her community’s expectation of her and what did her community want from her?

● Her community kept asking for a course and Rachel refused to do a course for YEARS.

● When she began her podcast she began to see the value of the course because people kept asking her questions and she had clarity about why a course would make sense as a part of her brand.
○ It saves her time

● Rachel wanted to share a true narrative about the process of being in mobile home investing and avoiding being disingenuous

● She wants to avoid the “Get Rich Quick” folks and is being very clear about the avatar that she works with.

● Why is she building a membership moving free folks to paid and uses “Buy Me a Coffee” after moving it off of Patreon. Rachel references it as a support page.
○ Figuring out what people want from her was the key part of making an impactful membership.
○ She wasn’t sure initially
○ Danielle Desire was an inspiration

● Attended the Plutus Impact Summit and heard Ramit Sethi’s advice-don’t sell anything that you wouldn’t buy yourself. This influenced how intentional she was with her product development.
● Rachel is a member of a community-Jen Amos.
○ A lot of trial and error in figuring out the content for her community
● She shares mobile home leads that she shares with her community because she only invests in her state of Texas.
● People want information that cannot be found anywhere else. Rachel is able to share this content in her membership space which is a Safe Space for her.
● Right now she’s working on content regarding a person who is defrauding folks and that information is only for members.
● Has decided to forgo sponsorships because they didn’t fit her vision
● Rachel is doing well with her mobile home business six-figures a year and has multiple streams of content.
○ Low content book business inspired by Nick Lopers show
● Rachel is creating a Mobile Home Girl ecosystem
○ She wakes up at 5:00 am to get stuff done and is focused on productivity
● Building up her authority has helped Rachel to avoid pushback behind the monetization approaches that she pursues.
● I ask Rachel to share how people can network in-person after 2 years of being at home.
○ Mobile Home Gurl
● What’s next for Rachel?
○ Growing the membership site
○ Low-content book business

Plutus Awards Podcast - Mobile Home Gurl Cover

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About Harlan Landes, Podcast Host

Harlan Landes is the founder and executive director of the Plutus Foundation. He started one of the first independent personal finance blogs in 2003 to hold himself accountable for his own financial decisions. He also founded the Plutus Awards in 2009 to highlight independent financial publishers.

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