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Crush $1000 in Debt: Our Tour Sponsor & RV Wrap…

in MvD Updates, Pay Off Your Debt, People & Products, Travel, Videos

Finally!

Today I’m proud to announce that we’ve finished our RV Wrap and can finally share my excitement for our mission and sponsor!

Back in December, after buying our new-to-us RV, I put out a call to any like-minded companies or sponsors that may want to help get the word out on the tour. Several companies and/or organizations contacted me for more details, but one among all others stood out…

We’ve joined forces with the Adaptu.com team!…

Adaptu is a brand new personal finance community with dozens and dozens of resources on everything from paying down debt to saving for retirement. One of the neatest features is the ability to pull all of your financial accounts into one single profile.

This means not only can you see, control, and manage all of your accounts in one simple snapshot – but you can instantly access additional communities of like-minded people based around your interests, lifestyle, or financial questions.

The best part?  It’s free.

100% free.

When Adaptu first contacted me, I was super excited. Here’s a sponsor whose values are:

  1. Community
  2. Transparency (opening up the conversation on personal finance topics)
  3. Bringing a fresh, exciting voice and message into the arena.

And their service is free?  Bingo!

You can see why I’m pumped about having a partner that fits so firmly with our values here.

Crush $100 of your Debt!

Take the Pledge!… Crush $1000 of your Debt!…

After we both realized what a great fit a partnership would be, the next item on the agenda was how to frame our fun, family road tour in a way that could help inspire others.

We wanted something simple… something nearly anyone could do… but something that would get people into action.

So we came up with a challenge.  A “pledge” if you will.

As we continue to tour around the country, we’re challenging people to pay off $1000 in debt by the end of our tour.

It can be any type of debt. You can choose, but we want to encourage people to actually *take action* and get started.

We’ll have a way for people who come meet us in person to sign the “pledge” and Adaptu has set up a fantastic web page that allows people to “sign” digitally (all it takes it your first name and zip code – simple & easy).

[Click here to join the cause to Crush $1000 of your Debt…]

Note: At the very least, check out the video I did for the landing page. I sound so much like a used car salesman it’s unreal! Haha, I’ll be rerecording it soon – so hop over and have a quick laugh before I replace it.  ;-)

It’s my hope that this simple, but fun challenge can help us grow our message and reach an audience that may be new to the personal finance journey. If you have any suggestions on how we can play off the “crushing debt” theme – let me know!  I’m always up for crushing random things!

Check out the new RV wrap! (Video below)…

One of the most fun parts of this process has been helping design, apply, and wrap our RV. I wanted it to show off Man Vs. Debt in a fun, creative way without being annoying, gaudy, or plastered with my face on it.

To give you a sneak peak to the process, here’s what happened:

  • First, Courtney and I took a tape measure (by hand) and measured every conceivable length, width, and depth on the entire RV. I believe it was below freezing when we did this – and I know it was snowing. I’m also positive we made at least a dozen mistakes.
  • The crude measurements were sent over to Adaptu’s creative team who put them into a template and proposed the first drafts of what the RV would look like.
  • Several weeks of back and forth tweaking and editing were made on the design. Each iteration being hand-sketched.
  • The final hand-sketch was turned into a vector (I think?) and sent to Jay Kelly at Signs By Tomorrow in Baltimore.
  • Jay worked extra – over the weekend – to print over 20 different 10 foot tall panels.  I came in on Sunday to help him trim, cut, and package the panels for the installer.
  • I drove the panels to Washington D.C. to a profesional installer – whom had never seen the design, was not included in the process, and talked to me for less than 30 seconds.
  • I waited 3 days, closed my eyes, and prayed that somehow all of this would come together.
  • It all came together. Somehow. It looks freakin’ awesome – despite my hours and hours of worrying.

I have no idea how something didn’t get messed up at one stage or another, but I’m so stoked at the final result.

Again, I owe a huge thanks to Jay Kelly from Signs By Tomorrow – who not only donated the printing, but lined up 3M to donate all the plastic for the project. He also worked overtime to secure a professional installer on short notice. I owe him big time!

In the end, we came out with this:

What do you think? Let me know below!

Once again, it’s big processes and events like this that make me realize how awesome it has to have a community of supporters online.

Sure, things were stressful – I worried too much about the outcome (as usual) – and we spent an extra month stuck in icy Baltimore working out the kinks.

But it’s done now. The RV is wrapped. We have a new mini-message to help spread. And we’ll be ramping up the miles as we drive to meet as many people as we possibly can.

This is just the start. Thanks for being on board for the ride!

And if you see a big orange RV driving next you… be sure to honk!!!!  ;-)

Xoxoxo,

-Baker

p.s. If you have an extra 5 seconds, please sign our new pledge. The more people we get to fill it out, the more we can leverage it to help the message spread. All it takes is your first name and zip. I’d really appreciate it.  :-)

{ 67 comments… read them below or add one }

Angie Bryant February 15, 2011 at 6:09 PM

YAY!!! Totally in alignment with what you are about. LOVE IT! Can’t wait to see it on the road in the PacNW.

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Joel February 15, 2011 at 6:10 PM

Baker, that is sweet! Looks Awesome. Congrats on finally getting the wrap done. Very well done. Can’t wait to see it in PDX!

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Jay Skiles February 15, 2011 at 6:11 PM

Baker: The wrap looks sharp! Beautiful job and on point besides. (You guys are always doing stuff like that.) See you at WDS and safe travels!

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Dave February 15, 2011 at 6:31 PM

Hey Baker,
For those of us in countries without 5-digit ZIP codes (eg, Australia), can we just invent one for this pledge?
Great work on the wrap!

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Jenna February 16, 2011 at 1:47 PM

We created an international group. Please use the zip code: 00000

Thanks!

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Caleb February 15, 2011 at 6:34 PM

Looking good Baker. I bet you’ll get plenty of people driving next to you pulling out their smart phones and typing in adaptu.com. Better watch out for swerving…

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Jenna February 16, 2011 at 12:53 PM

Maybe their co-pilots can check us out! Save travels everyone!

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Chase Night February 15, 2011 at 6:39 PM

Dude, this is so awesome! I want an RV so badly I can taste the bitter tang of fuel on my lips.

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Glenn Dixon February 15, 2011 at 6:42 PM

Wow! Baker, you are crushin’ debt AND crushin’ tha biz! Nice lookin’ wheels dude!

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Manuel February 15, 2011 at 6:47 PM

This is really cool; comgrats about the wrap.

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Andy Hayes February 15, 2011 at 6:49 PM

The wrap looks gorg! And what a great story to go along with it. Love!

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Sean February 15, 2011 at 6:53 PM

Stoked to see you working with Adaptu! I’ve met a few members of their team out here in Portland, and they’ve really developed something useful.

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Jenna February 16, 2011 at 12:53 PM

Nerd…

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Adam February 15, 2011 at 7:03 PM

This is so awesome! And such a great sponsor too. I can’t wait to put my hands on the RV in person when I fly over from the UK to Austin. Safe travelling! :)

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Karissa February 15, 2011 at 7:10 PM

Looks like fun!

I tried to sign up but I’m in Canada :(

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Jenna February 16, 2011 at 1:48 PM

Adaptu created an international group. Please use the zip code: 00000

Thanks!

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Jenna February 15, 2011 at 7:17 PM

YAHOO! Congrats everyone! Now let’s crush some debt!!

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David February 15, 2011 at 7:26 PM

Love it! I was very curious to find out who your sponsor was going to be, and like Angie said, they seems very aligned with your mission. Nice work, and safe travels!

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Damon Day February 15, 2011 at 7:27 PM

Hey Baker,
It looks awesome. I am glad it all came together for you. I just got off the phone with my friend Steve Rhode from getoutofdebt.org and he told me he was actually on his way to meet you over at the coffee shop in NC. So sounds like you guys are well into the road trip. Take care, enjoy your time on the road, and keep spreading the word.

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Satya Colombo February 15, 2011 at 7:27 PM

Well done Baker…! :)

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James Schipper February 15, 2011 at 7:39 PM

Looks great Baker! Can’t wait to see it when you get here!

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Dan February 15, 2011 at 8:27 PM

This is really pulled off in a classy way, I love the style of the artwork.

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Marnie - The UnBlogger February 15, 2011 at 8:36 PM

Looks fabulous. I tried to sign up for the challenge but it wouldn’t accept my Canadian postal code. Is this for US residents only?

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Jenna February 16, 2011 at 12:56 PM

Hey Marnie – I just asked our team about this issue. I’ll get back to you as soon as we come up with a solution.

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Jenna February 16, 2011 at 1:48 PM

Hey Marnie – Adaptu created an international group. Please use the zip code: 00000

Thanks!

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Joan February 15, 2011 at 9:02 PM

I am so excited! That looks great, and I’m glad to be able to officially join the challenge. I’m also definitely signing up for Adaptu; ever since hearing you talk about it in broad terms, I’ve been excited to find out “who” it was!

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Jenna February 16, 2011 at 12:56 PM

Thanks for checking us out! Let me know what you think of the site!

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Joan February 17, 2011 at 1:20 PM

I am liking a LOT of the content so far. I’m having a bit of trouble linking a couple of my accounts, including both my small local bank checking account and, more surprisingly, my ING Orange savings. Not errors so much as timeouts when trying to connect. I’m guessing you guys got hit big when Baker’s news went up, so I’m planning to try again over the weekend!

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Jenna February 17, 2011 at 1:36 PM

Hey Joan –
Want to check out: http://getsatisfaction.com/adaptu to get help with your accounts. Or email support@adaptu.com for more help.

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Denise @ The Single Saverth February 15, 2011 at 9:07 PM

Awesome, Baker. Great job. I watched your video on Adaptu. My first thought when i heard about your challenge was “darn, I don’t have dept and I want to join in the fun.” But you reminded me that mortgage debt counted (duh) so I signed the pledge and will be making an extra $1,000 towards my mortgage this year, My goal is to get my mortgage paid off ASAP so every little bit will help.

Incidentally, your webpage is one of the web experiences that inspired me to start The Single Saver (www.thesinglesaver.com). Thank you.

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Denise @ The Single Saver February 15, 2011 at 9:09 PM

Can’t believe I misspelled my own name above… I will blame it on my excitement on joining the pledge! ;)

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Christine McCarthy February 15, 2011 at 9:49 PM

That is really awesome, Baker and family! Love the mission, the pledge, and the big orange sun on the back!

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Living the Balanced Life February 15, 2011 at 10:35 PM

Very cool! Definitely going to go check out Adaptu and the challenge!
Bernice

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Jenna February 16, 2011 at 12:57 PM

Glad you are going to check out Adaptu! Let us know what you think!

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Heidi Howes February 15, 2011 at 11:07 PM

It looks awesome!!!! Wanna come to Northern WI?

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Justin Hamlin February 15, 2011 at 11:51 PM

Baker – Glad to see all the waiting in Baltimore paid off. Looks awesome!

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Andy February 16, 2011 at 12:06 AM

Looks great. I’d love to see a map showing the areas of the country with the most pledgers. Is that the idea behind gathering just a first name and zip? To boldly go in the RV where debt needs to be crushed the most?

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Jenna February 16, 2011 at 1:02 PM

You’ll see. We have a lot of fun stuff planned for the summer.

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Edwina February 16, 2011 at 12:32 AM

The wrap looks AWESOME!!!

Would it be too late to recommend flipping the Man vs Debt image on the front hood so that it’s backwards and will read frontwards in a rear view mirror? Like an ambulance.

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Charles February 16, 2011 at 1:56 PM

From the “Adaptu Creative Team” here. Funny you mentioned that, we actually made a version like that and went back and forth about it internally. The un-reversed look won out in the end. :)

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SJ February 16, 2011 at 1:41 AM

Great to see the RV in person! Oh yeah, and to meet y’all, too. :-) That rig is awesome and I cannot believe how tweaked out it is. I also cannot believe that Milli is even cuter in real life – those ringlets, oh my word. I’m so glad I was able to see you while you’re in my neck of the woods, and I hope lots of other folks take the chance to shake hands and meet and greet. You might be hearing from Sue Stock or someone else at the New & Observer, I couldn’t help myself and shot her a FB message. Safe travels and keep up the great work.

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Elizabeth Van February 16, 2011 at 8:32 AM

You’ve got to go global!! I’m another Canadian who is trying to sign up….

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Jenna February 16, 2011 at 1:00 PM

Hey Elizabeth – Our team is working on a solution. Let you know what we come up with as soon as I find out.

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Jenna February 16, 2011 at 4:19 PM

Hey Elizabeth – Adaptu created an international group. Please use the zip code: 00000

Thanks!

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Cherie @Technomadia February 16, 2011 at 9:00 AM

Congrats, Bakers… the wrap looks awesome, and this seems like a *perfect* fit with your mission.

Would love to join your pledge to support you guys.. except we have neither Zip Code (umm.. nomads, hello??) or any debt. Nope.. nothing. Been completely debt free for 4 years now (once I finally sold the darn house).

But I am going to check out Adaptu as an alternative to what I used Mint.com for.

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Jenna February 16, 2011 at 1:03 PM

Hey Cherie – We are working on a solution right now. I’ll let you know as soon as I know. But feel free to check out Adaptu in the mean time. And let us know what you think.

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Jenna February 16, 2011 at 1:49 PM

Hey Cherie – We created an international group. Please use the zip code: 00000

Thanks!

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Aaron February 16, 2011 at 10:29 AM

Cool – will look for you when in the midwest!

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Sara Mathewson February 16, 2011 at 11:04 AM

The wrap looks awesome! I will definitely look into Adaptu. I do have debt and have paid off a chunk and will pledge to pay off $1000.00 more by the time this tour wraps up! Thanks for the inspiration:)
Are you guys coming to Mpls.?

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Jenna February 16, 2011 at 1:04 PM

Glad you are checking out Adaptu. Let us know what you think!

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MikeworX February 16, 2011 at 11:19 AM

SAAAWeeeet!!!! How can we miss you!! Nice sticker!

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Louise February 16, 2011 at 11:43 AM

The wrap turned out very nice! Signed the pledge because we have decided to completely pay off the mortgage on our rental property in March. Woo hoo!

As someone who blogs about our travels in another eye-catching RV, I encourage you and your family to discuss how you will handle “stalkers.” These are the usually harmless, but often annoying, people who will follow your travels online and seek you out at inappropriate times. I’m not talking about folks who email you to arrange a meeting and turn into be fantastic new friends (Hi, James Schipper and Cherie! :-) No, I mean the ones who see your rig at the grocery store, laundromat or dump station and immediately want to come inside for a tour. Sometimes they knock at 6am or 11pm. Sometimes they literally chase you down and circle you with their cars.

You are now a highly visible, easy to find minor celebrity, which can take some adjustment. Have a plan, be clear about your boundaries, and practice your polite but firm ways to say, “No thanks.” My standard catch phrase is “I’m sorry, this isn’t a good time.” My husband Sean often says, “My wife isn’t up for a tour right now.” Repeat as necessary.

Best of luck, and may you find many friends and few stalkers!

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Cherie @Technomadia February 21, 2011 at 7:41 PM

Yup yup.. definitely concur with this advice! (And Louise, you guys wrote us :) ).

There will simply be days that you just want to be at home – not being on tour. In our Oliver, we can hardly stop anywhere and be outside our rig without attracting attention (either from readers or just folks curious about our rig). Some days, it’s great… and other days, I just wish I could hit the ‘cloaking’ button and be in a normal boring RV.

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Pace Smith February 16, 2011 at 11:44 AM

Baker,

How long is your road trip gonna be again? I want to know how long I’ve got to pay off the $1000. (:

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Giber February 16, 2011 at 12:45 PM

Baker,
The RV looks awesome my man! When you stopping by Phoenix?

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MutantSuperModel February 16, 2011 at 1:14 PM

The wrap is great! The pledge is signed. I really hope I can see you guys in FL!

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Evan February 16, 2011 at 4:15 PM

Jenna has commented on my site often and until today I never checked out her site…I am heading over there now!

Thanks Adaptu for hooking up Baker

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Jenna February 16, 2011 at 4:21 PM

Hahaha! Glad you are finally checking out Adaptu Evan! Thanks for being a rockin’ blogger too!

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Claire February 16, 2011 at 9:12 PM

Just wanted to flag that you are asking people to sign up to crush $1000 in debt before you finish your tour but its really hard to find anywhere that says how long you’ll be on tour for… From what I recall of your initial blog posts about it is that its kinda flexible depending on a bunch of things (like getting the RV wrapped, congrats on that btw!). I haven’t been able to find the info on Adaptu and your blog post here doesn’t mention it.
I’m all signed up and payments are being made but knowing how much time I have is kinda important!
All the best with it!

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D R at Motivating Minutes February 20, 2011 at 8:08 PM

Awesome story – when does the tour end again?

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Jenna February 28, 2011 at 5:57 PM

It’s a six month tour – but you can crush debt anytime!

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Dr. Timothy Lawler February 21, 2011 at 9:09 AM

Great post and congrats on finishing the wrap! I will be sure to look for you in the news! I will also be sure to check out Adaptu. Seems like a great resource. Keep up the good work!

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Jenna February 22, 2011 at 1:36 PM

Hey Dr. Timothy Lawler – Let us know what you think of Adaptu.

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Dr. Timothy Lawler February 22, 2011 at 2:12 PM

I absolutey will! Take care!

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Kerry-Ann February 21, 2011 at 5:19 PM

What an awesome idea you have. Crushing debt, but making the amount small enough that people don’t feel overwhelmed, yet empowered that they can make a difference. So important at this time to reduce as much debt as possible! Love your van – must have been stressful waiting for the finished product, never know how it is going to turn out. Turned out great!

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Erin Wilson February 21, 2011 at 8:59 PM

ps. Just wanted to follow up. I signed your pledge a few days ago, and put my money where my mouth was by paying off the last of my debt. Not as much in savings, but it feels great to be debt free and not paying interest on that credit card.

I think signing the pledge was effective for me. I probably would have (stupidly) just left it ride a while longer otherwise.

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Jenna February 28, 2011 at 5:58 PM

Sweet! Good luck crushing debt @Erin WIlson! I’m rooting for you!

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