The “yellow pages” of student entrepreneurs is coming to Florida A&M University’s campus in September.
The Green Pages, a student business directory aims to bring small student businesses to the forefront and encourage students to choose student businesses as a primary source, not an alternative.
“Got Green?” is a strategic marketing campaign set to launch this fall.
The business directory of student entrepreneurs was founded by The Alexander Companies Inc. ACI’s founders are Mitch Brooks, 21, CEO and a senior business administration student from Washington and Jonathan Taylor, 21, president and a junior business administration student from Chicago.
“Through direct marketing, advertising and the internet, The Green Pages will be a vessel to inform college students on the services and products available to them at a price complimentary of their level of income,” said Brooks. “Yet at a service parallel to big companies and corporations.”
The directory is divided amongst several categories from entertainment to services.
“A lot of people get discouraged, when they don’t have the know-how, now they are at the forefront,” Taylor said. “We do the advertising for them.”
Students who are interested in advertising their businesses will have to go through an application process to ensure that customers receive quality service.
“We don’t want to promote sub-par businesses,” Taylor said.
The first step is to fill out a Listing Interest form. The application will be filed and the business will be categorized in Entertainment or Services. Marketing plans will also be provided including design logos, fliers and posters.
A customer service check will also be implemented. Businesses will be given a stamp of approval by The Green Pages if their customer service is of good quality. All businesses do not have to be certified.
Rebates will be published in the coupon section of the directory for businesses to create incentives for customers.
A circulation of over 2,000 directories will be distributed to students at locations around campus including: “the dorms, apartment complexes, restaurants and barber shops,” Taylor said.
This project will start on campus, but Taylor and Brooks said they hope to take it to other schools.
“We are not just focusing on our students, but all student entrepreneurs as well,” Taylor said.
Directories will also be available to Florida State University and Tallahassee Community College students as well as students across the region.
“I’m focusing on the bigger vision,” said Brooks. “We want this to be a cross -country, campus wide event after here. We want directories to be at Clark-Atlanta University, Howard University, and other institutions.”
“Everything I do is one of a kind,” said Tiffini Gillespie, 23, owner of T.Corrine Handcrafted Jewelry and senior business administration student from Atlanta. “I’m very passionate about what I do. I can create almost anything. I’m willing to be open and work with a lot of people.”
Gillespie started her business a year ago after people began to admire her talent. “I don’t like to have the same stuff everybody else has,” she said. “People told me (my jewelry) was good and that I should sell it.”
Her jewelry is custom made and she said she does not duplicate pieces.
The Green Pages hopes to encourage more students to be entrepreneurs and to be more serious about their craft, Taylor said.
Contact Christy G. Bennett at firstname.lastname@example.org.