Grant Aldrich is an advisor, board member to nonprofits, and a purpose-driven entrepreneur.
Grant is CEO and founder of OnlineDegree.com. He founded the company in 2016 with a mission to make higher education more accessible and affordable for everyone. Six years later they are well on their way.
Grant has spent his entire career working in startups with nearly 15 years of experience.
Now, let's hack…
Highlights from the interview
- [4:20]: “How could you know anything if you don't know yourself?” For Grant, this concept has been a key factor. When people are looking into business ideas — how to scale them, how to market them — they don't always ask, “Is this business the right fit for me?” Entrepreneurship has shown Grant a lot of things about his own strengths and weaknesses.
- [11:40]: Grant got the idea for OnlineDegree.com in 2015, when he had a near-death experience that caused him to start thinking about what he really wanted to do in life. He had left college with a lot of debt, which he paid off throughout his 20s. So, he decided to try to find a way to make education more available and accessible to people.
- [15:00]: After coming up with the mission statement — to make college more affordable and accessible — Grant had to figure out how to monetize the idea. This was an immense challenge, especially as higher education costs continue to grow year over year. He decided to focus toward working adults who want to go back to school, but are put off by the cost and the prospect of potentially crippling student debt. It was a very complex two-year process to get things off the ground for launch.
- [19:45]: When the site finally launched, they had over 1,000 signups right off the bat, without having done any marketing for it. It was the most successful launch of Grant's entire career. Word of mouth continues to be a major source of publicity and marketing for OnlineDegree.com.
Resources and links from the episode
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