This week The Startup magazine had a very interesting interview with Nick and Chris Donnelly, the founders of Real Uni Guide. Real Uni Guide is a socially intelligent search engine to find the perfect university for a prospectus student. It provides its users with up to date, informative and student savvy information about applying and attending University.
1) Who is the Real Uni Guide aimed at?
Real Uni Guide is aimed at helping any prospectus university student. From 16-17 year olds beginning their university search, right through to those considering their PHDs.
2) What sets the Real Uni Guide apart from your competitors, and similar services?
Real Uni Guide provides individuals with an independent student opinion of applying and attending University. The socially intelligent search engines allows individuals to input their own criteria as well as the site utilising their social data to suggest Universities that their friends have attended and liked. It provides a detailed profile of every University, with video and interactive material.
3) What sparked the idea for the Real Uni Guide?
The idea for Real Uni Guide was born from the frustration of applying; Nick and Chris Donnelly realised they were spending a lot of money on visiting Universities and still they were not able to attain the ‘all rounded’ opinion that they wanted. Therefore they created the Real Uni Guide to allow people to accurately choose their top 3-5 universities.
4) How long has Real Uni Guide been in the making, and who are the team behind it?
Real Uni Guide has been in the making for two years. The team is comprised of current, ex and prospectus students and therefore to find the time to construct such a sophisticated service has been challenging.
5) Who are the team behind Real Uni Guide, and how did they come together?
The team is comprised of Nick, Chris and Will Donnelly who came up with the idea together as well as Matthew Wright (a graphic designer) and Warren Moore (a developer).
6) What stage of business development is Real Uni Guide currently at?
Real Uni Guide took an angel investment and now has a fully working website and the construction of mobile application is taking place currently. There is a full office based in London and the team continues to expand.
7) What would you like to achieve with Real Uni Guide in the coming year?
We would like to see students using Real Uni Guide to enhance their application process, to view our profiles, use our comparison functionality and ask us questions about the perfect university for them.
8) What has been your biggest challenge so far at Real Uni Guide?
The construction of the brand and web assets has certainly been the most challenging; many design companies have inputted into the process, but we feel we now have a brand that truly identifies with students as well as a website and search engine accurate enough to truly aid a student’s choice.
9) If you could give one piece of advice to someone thinking about starting a business, what would it be?
Make sure you know exactly what service your customer requires and what you are in fact going to give them.
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