Where Are They Now? Follow Up with Yellowbrick.me Co-Founder Matt ConnellInnovation Destination Hartford met with Yellowbrick.me Co-Founder Matt Connell, EDD, in August 2016 (read the interview: Social Impact Startup Is Building an Online Community for Parents and Families). Yellowbrick.me is an online tool that provides parents, families, and communities with the resources needed to raise socially responsible children.
Since its launch in 2016, the social impact startup has reached several milestones and Matt has taken on a new role at Goodwin College. IDH Website Curator Nan Price caught up with Matt, who shared updates about his entrepreneurial journey.
NAN PRICE: Congratulations on the new position at Goodwin College. Can you tell us a little about how that will tie-in with your role at Yellowbrick.me?
MATT CONNELL: Thanks! I’m excited about my position as Program Director at the Business Administration Department at Goodwin College.
Goodwin has always had a practical learning focus. I have an entrepreneurial background and I’m in the midst of building a business—so I can bring the balance of theory and practicality. It will be good for students to see someone in the trenches, who can provide a level of experiential expertise.
As my position grows, I foresee more tie-ins and synergies with Yellowbrick.me.
NP: Let’s talk about the evolution of Yellowbrick.me. When we last met, the startup had recently launched.
MC: We’ve reached a lot of milestones since then. We recently hit our break-even point.
In October 2016, we secured some funding from angel investors which we used toward marketing, and engagement growth. The funds also enabled us to expanded team from three to 11 full- and part-time employees.
We have three sales people dedicated to advertising and marketing and we now have two team members focused on content and community engagement. Lacey Byrne is a Staff Writer and Sarah Calatayud is our Head of Community Engagement. With their contributions, the quality of content has jumped 1,000-fold.
NP: How so?
MC: When John Christensen and I co-founded Yellowbrick.me, our mission was always to develop research around social responsibility and how to help parents develop socially responsible children. While we were working to get the startup off the ground, we got a little off track with our content and covered a broader range of topics.
As we were able to bring in more people, John and have been able to refocus and develop content that is more focused on our original mission.
It’s been great to have people on board who are invested in our mission and keep us focused.
NP: It’s good that you were able to recognize the mission was shifting and regroup.
MC: Right. Life requires that you’re nimble in order to succeed. It’s not necessarily about pivoting; it’s about adapting to change.
NP: And moving forward.
MC: Exactly. The only obstacle to success is when you stop trying. When you stop navigating around obstacles, you fail.
NP: Sound advice. What’s next for Yellowbrick.me?
MC: We’re working on growing relationships with strategic partners and increasing our membership growth. We currently have content views reaching 1.5 to 2 million views per month—that’s up from about 50,000 a month when we first began. We’re excited to engage more members and share our message.
Interested in learning more about Goodwin College? Read our interview with Founding President Mark Scheinberg:
Entrepreneur, President and Founder of Goodwin College