A 'digital nomad,' Jessica uses mobile solutions to effectively run her business all over the world.
Research guru and self-proclaimed “digital nomad” Jessica Broome is founder and primary researcher at Jessica Broome Research, a marketing and opinion research company that helps businesses run better by getting a deeper understanding of their people.
Jessica has a unique approach to market research. She combines her impressive academic training (PhD in Survey Methodology and MS in Applied Social Research) with her 16 years of real world experience as a strategic researcher to help companies collect all kinds of information. Information could include anything and everything, like what kind of shoes people like to why they choose one brand of pizza over another. She then takes that data and uses it to offer her clients data-driven recommendations to help solve problems.
As a result of Jessica’s globetrotting ways, she doesn’t have a “home base” and changes cities as often as every few months. She uses mobile solutions to effectively run her business all over the world and to stay in touch with clients. While this lifestyle can definitely present its challenges, it also keeps things spontaneous and interesting.
Intrigued? Meet Jessica Broome of Jessica Broome Research:
What was life like before Jessica Broome Research and what motivated you to quit your day job and start your own business?
I was working in the research arm of PR agencies. I love primary research but not sitting in a cubicle, wearing high heels and making money for someone else.
Jessica’s 3 pearls of wisdom for entrepreneurs:
- Ask a lot of questions.
- Get as much exposure as you can to the field you’re interested in.
- Everyone is a contact… you don’t know who they know!
Describe the biggest challenge you’ve experienced as a small business owner and how you dealt with it.
Things I’ve realized over the 4 years of living this way is even if my location is not stable, my routine is stable. Wherever I am, I get up and do the same things in the same order. I work at the same time and follow the same patterns and routines.
I connect with people in all kinds of ways: going to coworking spaces, finding a new bar or coffee shop or connecting online with the wider ‘digital nomad’ community. A lot of apps and online tools make connecting with others a lot easier.
Share an interesting or unexpected story with us.
Almost anywhere I go I work in coworking spaces. I’m a huge fan of the coworking model. I’ll even look for an Airbnb near them. I’m very extroverted so I need the social touch but, at the same time, I’m always on the phone so I also need an “office” space.
Once, I was living in rural Vermont in an old farmhouse. It was beautiful but very isolated and remote. I drove an hour to a coworking space in Burlington, Vermont and they had a member bulletin in the bathroom where members could advertise stuff. I posted my card on it and forgot about it.
After I left Vermont I went to New Orleans, then Thailand. Someone emailed me when I was there who ran a non-profit in Vermont. They had seen my business card on the bulletin!
They ended up becoming my client and it was a really amazing experience. I credit coworking with those types of connections.
It’s a typical work day. Where can we find you?
Coworking spaces, coffee shops and Airbnb’s all over the world.
— Jessica Broome (@JBroomeResearch) October 5, 2015
Inspiration or perspiration?
The harder I work, the luckier I get.
The harder I work, the luckier I get. I think there’s an intersection of the two. I spend a lot of time reaching out to people and networking. Sometimes the immediate payoff is not obvious, but they might call me for a project 10 years later (it’s happened!)
Who is your role model?
My dad. He started his own law firm with two friends right out of law school and, 43 years later, still loves going to the office every day at 6 a.m. I always knew I wanted to work as hard as my dad and never considered doing something I didn’t love.
Do you have a motivational mantra or inspirational quote that helps you get you out of bed in the morning?
Good things come to those who hustle.
Work-Life balance is *tough* for a small business owner. How do you stay balanced?
I exercise every day, get enough sleep and remember that technology is a good slave but a bad master!
My nomad gym pic.twitter.com/yabBkCHoJK
— Jessica Broome (@JBroomeResearch) November 17, 2014
What’s next for Jessica Broome Research?
Growth! Making a few part-time hires, becoming the ‘go-to’ research partner for a few small PR agencies and redesigning my website.
Jessica is not a fan of winter. This is what originally motivated her to start moving from one city or country to the next.
Learn more about Jessica and Jessica Broome Research:
Want to be featured in FreshBooks Customer Stories? Fill out this submission form.
about the author
Amanda is a content editor at FreshBooks, writing and producing blog content to help small business owners achieve their goals and enjoy (yes, actually enjoy!) running their business. Amanda’s background in education and customer support makes her a natural communicator who loves empowering others to succeed. When she’s not writing and editing content, Amanda takes her dog, Jonny, on adventures searching for the best coleslaw in Toronto.