Kyle Gray: Leveraging College to Become an Entrepreneur


Kyle Gray, author of The College Entrepreneur and founder of Conversion Cake is a tenacious young business owner with some great advice about creating your own career path, even if you've started on a somewhat traditional trajectory.

The College Entrepreneur is the missing ingredient to a lot of the problems that students are having when they are graduating and can’t find a good job that they love doing. “There’s more opportunity than ever, so it’s a shame to see so many students struggling.” It’s not that everybody should be an entrepreneur, but when you’re able to embody the skills that entrepreneurs need, you can be more proactive in whatever position or job you do have. You might even be more fulfilled by it!

In The College Entrepreneur, each chapter opens with a story about a student creating his/her own business, and then breaks down the specific action steps taken; it serves as kind of a playbook.

Kyle couldn’t connect with a lot of the classes he took in college. They didn’t relate enough to getting out in life and being successful. “This book details the changing of that process, discovering how I could use my university to connect with the real world. Build up a business or build something that I really cared about and that I wanted to do and that I could direct, instead of simply always having a professor guide me or someone at a job tell me what to do.”

I had this asset that I was building while as a student, and using my universities’ resources to grow it and to make connections with different entrepreneurs, different thought leaders, and building a brand around it.

At one point, Kyle worked with Chandler Bolt from Self-Publishing School to develop his content marketing strategy. Learning from Chandler's 'launch-team' strategy--how to put together a team of people that will help you launch your book and make a big impact early--was particularly helpful. “What I think Chandler does really, really well is give people a perspective to do this if they don’t have a big brand, or a big business already … he gives you a strategy to put together friends and family, and anyone who is interested on social media.”

Even for somebody who doesn’t have a large brand yet, you can have an impact and a successful book launch with some of the things that Chandler gives you. When people feel like they have contributed to the end product, they are more willing to share it and they want to see you succeed.

The College Entrepreneur

Kyle had a unique way of reaching out to people and making them feel involved when his book launched: he offered to write a postcard to anyone who reviewed his book during launch week, thanking them for participating and helping out.

In 2013, Kyle founded Conversion Cake, a digital marketing consulting agency that helps small businesses with content marketing strategies, email marketing automation, and sales funnel implementation. His challenges have involved trying to find the company’s unique voice, and deciding which market to target, and what their core offer is. 

If you just have that one offer dialed in, and you can just create a great experience, I think that’s when things can really start to take off. You can scale, you can grow, and you can market yourself in a lot of better ways.


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  • Does the book document Kyle’s story or is more of a how-to (spoiler: it’s both)?
  • Is the book applicable for someone who has never thought of themself as an entrepreneur?
  • What did Kyle learn from Self Publishing School that helped him strategize the launch?
  • What are some of the experiences or opportunities that Ryan has been able to have by going against the grain?
  • What are some of the struggles in building up Conversion Cake?


  • Why The College Entrepreneur is the missing ingredient for many students who graduate, but can’t find a good job that they love
  • How to leverage the resources at college to develop yourself as an asset
  • How to have a successful, self-published book launch
  • How Conversion Cake is helping small businesses with content marketing strategies, email marketing automation and sales funnels
  • Plus much more…