In April of 2011, Jeffry Harrison took a tour of the Southern Illinois University Carbondale (SIUC) Research Park as the Southern Illinois University Edwardsville (SIUE) Student Trustee. While touring the incubator on campus, Jeffry met the founders of RoverTown, a student discount program that started off with plastic discount cards and evolved to a university wide discount program using a smartphone application. After meeting and speaking with the founders, he decided to work with the SIUC founders to bring the RoverTown Student Discount Program to his campus at SIUE. In the first 30 days, the application was downloaded over 1,000 times.
Now operating as the COO of RoverTown, Jeffry has helped the company expand to 72 colleges and universities. Although the competition is stiff for reward programs, Jeffry gives several reasons for RoverTown being able to set themselves apart from competitors.
What sets RoverTown apart?
– Marketed directly towards college students
– Discount listing, not daily deals
– 100% digital
– Colleges work directly with company and promote from within the school
Asked if he has always been entrepreneurial, Jeffry said yes, and he blames his father. Growing up as the son of a dentist who owned his own practice, he often helped out with various aspects of the business and grew a strong passion for wanting to one day own his own company as well.
2013 CEO National Conference
As a student in 2009, Jeffry Harrison competed in the National Elevator Pitch Competition, which is the featured competition held during the Collegiate Entrepreneurs’ Organization (CEO) National Conference. This October, he will return to the conference to share his experience and tips with young entrepreneurs. He will be speaking about sales in a startup and how important it is to a new business’ success. “Sales solve all problems,” says Jeffry. Through developing early sales, Jeffry has helped lead RoverTown to success without needing significant investments from venture capitalists or angel investors.
To hear Jeffry and 80 other entrepreneurs and business leaders at the 2013 CEO National Conference, register here! The event is open to college students and general public and will welcome over 1,000 attendees from across the nation. To find out more about CEO, visit www.c-e-o.org.
LISTEN TO THE FULL INTERVIEW WITH ROVERTOWN COO JEFFRY HARRISON HERE!
– Best piece of advice: “Sales. Sales. Sales.”
– Why Jeffry is excited about coming back to the 2013 CEO National Conference in Chicago.
– How RoverTown sold their product before being developed.
– What Jeffry does to relax. “If you don’t relax you’re going to burnout.”
– The one entrepreneur Jeffry Harrison would add to his team at RoverTown: Richard Branson. “Has a great vision and likes to have fun.”