One of the most successful online entrepreneurs and lifestyle bloggers, Sean Ogle spent the past two months in Bali and I had the chance to meet him and learn a whole lot about who he was and how he has been able to build such a successful business model. While in Bali, Sean launched his product called Location Rebel and anyone who is interested in making money in Bali or anywhere else in the world for that matter should check out Sean’s website. Being “location independent” as he likes to call it, Sean has already moved on to his next destination, but was more than happy to do an interview with BaliManual about his time spent here on the island. He has volumes upon volumes of information that he can teach to anyone wondering how they could make a living from abroad. Let’s hear more directly from Sean:
First of all, who are you and what were you doing in Bali for the past two months?
My name is Sean Ogle, and I run a lifestyle entrepreneurship blog called Location 180. For years I was making good money as a financial analyst, but was miserable. I wasn’t getting any closer to my goals of traveling the world and starting my own business, so I quit, and worked on building a series of web based businesses.
For the last two months I’ve been living in Bali running those businesses, launching a new website, and enjoying all of the great things that Bali has to offer.
You chose to launch your latest project, Location Rebel while in Bali. Can you tell us a little bit about Location Rebel and how being in Bali during the release helped?
So in the last two years, I’ve started a series of successful businesses ranging from freelance copywriting and SEO, to affiliate marketing, to even professional blogging. I was getting a lot of people asking how I was able to do it, and how they could do the same thing.
I realized most people were going about this process the wrong way. They were focusing solely on internet marketing, and all of the traditional “4 hour work week” style businesses. The reality is the best way to be successful is to actually learn a series of useful skills that you can freelance. I created Location Rebel as a way to teach people those skills, and then help them turn those skills into a successful location independent business.
Upon releasing the program, I figured if I was going to create a course called “Location Rebel” I’d better do it from a pretty cool location – Bali definitely seemed to fit the bill, and add to the credibility of the course.
Do you think that Bali is a good place for an online entrepreneur to make a living?
I think Bali is a fantastic place online entrepreneurs. I was actually kind of surprised by this, but for a few reasons I think it’s one of the best places in Asia for online entrepreneurs.
First, it’s diverse. You can live a cheap lifestyle in Bali, but at the same time you have the ability to go blow it out and live the high life whenever you want as well. It’s also very geographically diverse. You can hit the beach in the morning and then head inland and climb a mountain in the afternoon, which is something that makes Bali much different than many of the Thai islands for instance.
Second, there’s a great community of entrepreneurs living there. One of the most successful things you can do as an internet entrepreneur is surround yourself with other like-minded people. Over the last few years Bali has exploded as a hotspot of entrepreneurship, and being around likeminded people is not something to be taken for granted.
Finally, there’s a constant inflow of smart people. Bali is a world-class travel destination, so at any given time there’s always an abundance of smart people coming and going. This gives you great networking and business opportunities.
What advice do you have for anyone looking to move to Bali and work online?
The best advice I can give to someone looking to move to Bali and/or work online is to just do it. These are both things that many people will always talk about doing, but the bottom line is, until you take a chance and work to make it happen, you never will. You can live a comfortable life in Bali for less than $1,000/month. Go out for a couple months, work hard on your business, and I think you’ll be amazed at just how possible it is to create a successful online business.
How long have you been living this location independent lifestyle and how long did it take you until you were able to quit your job and live off of your own ventures?
I’ve been living this lifestyle almost two years to the day. About 2 months after quitting my job I moved to Bangkok to begin building skills and learning how to run my own business. Within a matter of weeks I was able to find freelance work and begin making money online. It was about 3 months before I was making enough to live off of, and by 6 months I was making more than I was at my previous job.
How did you find your cost of living in Bali over a 2 month period?
Like I said before, Bali is great because it can be really affordable. During the time I was there I probably spent about $600/month, and that was doing everything I wanted to do. Going out, traveling, leisure activities etc. The only thing that didn’t cover was rent, as I had a free place to stay. It was great because I could eat $3 meals that were fantastic, and if I wanted to go out for something nicer, there were practically limitless opportunities.
What were some of your favorite things that you saw/did while in Bali?
Oh man, where do I start. First off, one of the best things to do in Bali is get a motorbike and just cruise around the island and get lost. I did this more times than I care to count and it always resulted in a good story and great experience. There’s lot of temples and such to go check out, especially if you’re into photography (I’m partial to Tanah Lot).
If you’re into watersports, you can surf, bodyboard, kiteboard etc. It’s also a great place to learn if you’ve been wanting to give it a shot.
Along with all of that, one of my favorite things to do was just head down to one of the bean bag bars on Seminyak Beach, and have a couple beers with friends. There’s very few places in the world that can compare to that.
Is Bali going to be on your list of destinations to visit again?
This last trip was my second trip to Bali, and will definitely not be my last. I’m hoping to head back sometime next year to continue to build the relationships I made this time around, and escape the cold weather of Portland 🙂
Thanks Sean for the great interview. You really have built a business and lifestyle for yourself that is truly admirable!
The best part about Sean is that he loves to share his secrets with others and you can learn exactly how to build a business and lifestyle just like Sean’s with Location Rebel. Check it out, seriously, you won’t regret it!
Great interview, thanks, and well-written. What I can’t seem to find info on is the Indonesia Visa situation—what kind of Visa allows people to work online? Seems very confusing…thanks for an answer.
Thanks Charles. Indeed it is very confusing. Currently there is no kind of visa that covers this sort of work. When you think about it, even western countries like America are barely recognizing the fact that people can be capable of making an income while working on the internet for themselves, so I think it will be quite a while until SE Asian countries like Indonesia also come to this realization and create a visa for it or incorporate it into an existing visa. Sean and his many entrepreneur friends were all on various types of visas and I have NEVER heard of a case of someone getting in trouble for working from the internet – it is quite hard to prove that what you are doing is actually work and it doesn’t take away from an Indonesian’s salary which is the main reason for cracking down on working illegally. I would say whatever visa you are on is just fine although try not to go running around talking about what you do for work all the time just to be safe.