Q 1. Kindly give our readers an introduction to your business. Please include what your business is all about, in which city you are located and if you have offices in multiple locations/ cities.

Ans: Nomad was created to reinvent the way people get oil changes for your vehicles.
Most people don’t have a convenient way to fit car maintenance into their busy schedules, so Nomad takes reservations online – right from a smartphone – and brings oil changes directly to your car wherever it is parked. We offer a full array of preventive maintenance services such as oil changes, tire rotation, air filter replacement, wiper blades, even brakes. Nomad serves individuals, offices, and even commercial fleets with thousands of vehicles.

Q 2. Kindly give us a brief description about yourself (it should include your brief educational or entrepreneurial background and list some of your major achievements).

Ans: I started my career in consumer marketing, and have 13 years’ experience in brand management, product management, and marketing strategy. I learned a lot of my fundamental skills working in CPG, and then for a while ran ultra-premium/exotic vehicle rental and young-driver products for one of the major car rental companies. There seemed to be a common thread that my biggest successes were finding solutions to un-sexy problems; overlooked categories or under-supported products can sometimes shine with just a small injection of fresh strategy and executional excellence.

Q 3. What inspired you to (start a new business venture) or (to make significant changes in an existing business)? How did the idea for your business come about?

Ans: During those corporate years, it clicked for me that myself and everyone around me put a lot of miles on our cars commuting, and we all made good salaries. Yet it was a giant nuisance to get our cars maintained, and there seemed to be zero auto maintenance options that had been built around working people. How strange is it, that shops are only open when their best clientele is at work? It’s completely upside down! And then, as I sat at my desk one day, I watched a glass repair service replace an entire windshield in the parking lot. Maybe, I thought, the auto service industry was just way behind. Any industry where people still write on triplicate, or don’t use email, is due for a shake-up. What would it look like if you rebuilt it from scratch, completely around the current consumer instead of around the shop owner?

Q 4. What three pieces of advice would you give to budding entrepreneurs?

Ans: 1. Give your dreams more than one shot. Have a side gig that can help you through lean times. Even if you’re super smart, just realize things aren’t going to work on the first try, and you need to be able to lower the stakes for yourself when you’re first trying things in the market without knowing what will work. I’ve consulted (leaning on my brand strategy skills and contacts) for much of the time Nomad has been growing to help generate stability and supplemental liquidity.

2. Don’t make it about you. Being an entrepreneur has become an aspirational badge, it seems some people are most interested in saying they’re an entrepreneur or printing their own business cards with “CEO” on them. Well, your story and image is not as important to people as the contribution you make to their lives, the problem you solve. If you want to be an entrepreneur, make sure it’s because you have a vision to make something better. On a related note, it’s a pretty lousy way to get rich fast, so that goes back to being passionate about the work vs. the vanity elements.

3. Curiosity and selflessness are everything. If you keep your ears open more often than your mouth, and find ways to further those around you, you will find yourself surrounded by a network of people to support you on your journey.

Q 5. What would you say are the top three skills needed to be a successful entrepreneur?

Ans: Curiosity, Follow-Up, Flexibility

Q 6. How many hours do you work a day on average?

Ans: Usually about 11-12, but it’s quite unpredictable.

Q 7. To what do you most attribute your success?

Ans: I think it has a lot to do with being experimental. If you let yourself go into an experience without knowing the answer, you’ll learn from those experiments very rapidly. Nomad evolves constantly as things don’t work. We may take on a new type of client or new booking process and struggle for months to get the kinks worked out before things start being a win. If we wanted things to be easy from day one, we would have passed up on many of our most loyal accounts. Commit to doing something first, then jump through the hoops to make it happen.

Q 8. How do you go about marketing your business? What has been your most successful form of marketing?

Ans: We are active in networking, social media, and SEO. We’ve tried a huge range of tactics, sometimes giving them a year or more to evaluate if they’re effective. The best sources of new business are personal referrals, and people seeing our online reviews during a search for oil change service. These earned referrals take the longest, so it’s frustrating because you can’t just make it happen overnight.

Q 9. Where did your organizations funding/capital come from and how did you go about getting it? How did you obtain investors for your venture?

Ans: Nomad is self-funded. It was important to me to demonstrate the viability of the business model so when we do partner with outside investors, we are doing so from a position of strength.

Q 10. What is the best way to achieve long-term success?

Ans: I believe it’s a combination of flexibility, perseverance, and flexibility. There is no champagne moment, but rather a long series of steps and lessons that slowly – sloooowly – position you to do great things later on.

Q 11. How important have good employees been to your success?

Ans: Vital. Every 5-star review, the lifeblood of our customer acquisition, is due to an amazing technician giving a client that flawless experience. There’s a clear division of labor at Nomad, so we wouldn’t get very far if it was just me working on the website. A key piece of our model is the human, responsive, professional service you get once we’re on-site.

Q 12. What motivates you?

Ans: I love cars. The service industry is pretty lousy though . . . the idea of reinventing auto maintenance so that caring for cars was as fun as driving them is an exciting idea to me.

Q 13. What are your ideals?

Ans: I always try to connect with people as humans, rather than as clients, or employees, or cross-functional-colleagues etc. People trust you more if you’re a person instead of a robot. That, and I like to think that what sets Nomad apart is that we “give a s***”. In our industry, having a culture around doing the right thing for its own sake is a huge competitive advantage, and highly motivating to a good technician.

Q 14. How do you build a successful customer base?

Ans: Satisfaction and repeat business is incredibly important. If you make someone very happy, they might tell a friend. But even if they don’t, they’ll come back in 4-6 months. Over time, your calendar fills up with happy people coming back. It’s an annuity that keeps paying.

Q 15. What is your favorite aspect of being an entrepreneur?

Ans: I’m compulsive about client service. I think it’s a duty we owe to each other, so even for the worst clients (yeah, we have some bad ones) it’s not something I can turn off. Being better at client care than our competition is where I derive my confidence and enjoyment from.
I think seeing someone enjoy the service is my favorite part. And I don’t mean that in the cliché way. I mean, people come into an oil change service half expecting it to suck. They are sometimes surprised afterwards at how painless it was, and that good will is really gratifying to see and sometimes a bit amusing.

Q 16. What has been your most satisfying moment in business?

Ans: There’s always the most recent mega account we closed that seems to stick in my mind as evidence we’re doing something right. Racking up those wins over time helps you stay optimistic when you hit hurdles or come up empty on other opportunities.

Q 17. What do you feel is the major difference between entrepreneurs and those who work for someone else?

Ans: I think there’s a stability / excitement trade-off. I don’t derive that much enjoyment from comfort, but I do from doing something new. It’s a restlessness. Neither is superior in my opinion . . . in fact, my wife prefers stability while I prefer the riskier path, so we complement each other perfectly. The important thing is knowing which one you are. If you try to force it in the opposite kind of role, you’ll be miserable.

Company Detail:

Company : Nomad Oil
Address : 288 Claremont Ave
City : Montclair
State : NJ
Zip : 07042
Phone : 973-744-7069