Business marketing and media and information senior Nicholas Stachurski is just like a lot of MSU students. He hangs out with friends, goes to class and bleeds green and white. But there’s one thing that sets him apart from most — he is a student entrepreneur in charge of his own company.
Stachurski started Eightfold Marketing and Creative LLC., a marketing company with a primary focus on commercial production, in July 2013.
Over the past year-and-a-half, they’ve done 18 regionally-aired commercials, two music videos and are working on their first short film.
“We do a lot of branding, marketing campaigns, a lot of commercials that speak more to what the brand represents versus what they’re actually selling,” Stachurski said.
The branding they do is developing video content that, in his eyes, goes parallel with entertainment and marketing.
“You’re able to entertain your target market, but you’re also marketing something,” he said.
One big project Eightfold worked on was for the Book Industry Charitable Foundation, or Binc, a non-profit organization that helps bookstores in financial crises.
For example, Binc helped bookstore owner Clarey Rudd, who almost had to shut down his four bookstores due to the expenses of treating his cancer.
“Binc stepped in and helped eliminate over $114,000 of his medical bills,” Stachurski said. “So they sent us out to L.A. for nine days to capture his story of the process of being diagnosed, his surgery and then his recovery and how Binc was able to step in and help recover as well.”
In addition to helping organizations like Binc, Eightfold has been in pre-production for the past five months to make a project by MSU basketball guard Keenan Wetzel become a reality.
Wetzel wrote and will be directing “The Cager,” a short film about an injured college basketball player who can’t make it to the professional league.
“(The main character) was supposed to be the top 10 pick in the country and gets hurt during one of his games and isn’t able to go to the pros,” Stachurski said. “So he’s in this crossroad position in his life, where he has a daughter and a girlfriend who’s his high school sweetheart and he feels trapped ... he feels caged.”
Eightfold is working side-by-side with Wetzel and another company called Rumor Production, also founded by MSU alumni, on “The Cager.”
The short film stars former MSU basketball player Delvon Roe, who will play the main character, Wes, who undergoes a situation similar to the one Roe faced in his college basketball career.
“So the film isn’t based on Delvon’s life, but Keenan Wetzel as he was writing this, it was a heavy influence what had happened to Delvon,” Stachurski said. “That’s kind of what I would say inspired him. I can’t speak for him, but I do believe that he was really inspired by Delvon’s situation.”
Stachurski said they started production Sept. 19 and hope to have the final edit done sometime in November.
Staying in school
Working on so many projects, owning his own company and being able to support himself, many wonder why Stachurski even needs to go to school.
“Why I still have stayed in school? Because I wouldn’t be where I am today without Michigan State,” he said.
Stachurski said when his company started last July, a huge influence was the Hatch, a business incubator for MSU students in East Lansing and a part of Spartan Innovation.
“They were really the first stepping stones in getting our company launched,” he added. “I won the Hatching, which is a competition they put on. They helped me get my LLC., helped me register my company and kind of get those first baby steps into really having a company, an operating, functioning company with cash flow.”
Now, Stachurski has not only been able to support himself under his company’s name, but provides income for other students.
“It’s really powerful to be in school and be able to support other students,” he said.
Stachurski wants other Spartans to be able to experience entrepreneurship while they’re attending college and surrounded by resources. He said there are so many other students and professors that want to help.
“That is my biggest advice — capture it now,” he said. “It doesn’t matter if you fail, but create a team, create these relationships while you’re in school because as soon as you graduate, you’re kind of out in the jungle and those resources aren’t right at your fingertips.”
He said school is a great time to not work and be social, but it’s also a great time to build a professional network.