From Dorm Room Idea to Viral Success: Hayden Rankin of Nice Shirt Thanks LLC Joins the Createur Podcast

In a recent episode of the Createur Podcast, Hayden shares how he transformed a small idea into big business.
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Seth Hurd

February 21, 2024 Academics, Business

Haydin Rankin talks with student at createur conference

In a recent episode of The Createur Podcast, hosts by Karli Byrd ’23 and Spencer James ’24, from Olivet Nazarene University’s McGraw School of Business, had the pleasure of hearing from an inspiring Christian entrepreneur, Haden Rankin ’22, the founder of Nice Shirt Thanks LLC. This episode delved into the intricate balance of maintaining one’s identity in Christ amidst the challenges and successes of entrepreneurship.

After a spine injury derailed his plans of joining the military, Hayden found himself exploring new paths at Olivet. His entrepreneurial journey began in Chapman Hall, where he started a custom print on-demand apparel company. This venture wasn’t just a business endeavor but a journey intertwined with his growing faith.

Faced with physical and emotional challenges, Hadyen turned to reading, particularly the Bible, which deepened his relationship with Christ. His faith played a pivotal role in his recovery and entrepreneurial spirit. As Hayden put it, “my testimony and the Nice Shirt Thanks story are very synonymous.”

Nice Shirt Thanks blossomed from a simple idea during his junior year into a rapidly growing business. Hayden’s unique approach to combining comedy and art into apparel resonated with a wide audience. His first viral video garnered 1.4 million views, selling out his initial stock of 85 shirts in just eight hours and garnered major media coverage in outlets like Mashable.

Throughout his journey, Hayden emphasized the importance of staying humble and grounded in Christ, especially during rapid success. He shared how constant prayer, good mentorship, and an acute awareness of his flaws kept him anchored in his faith.
Hayden’s story is a powerful reminder for aspiring entrepreneurs at Olivet and beyond. It highlights the importance of adapting to life’s challenges, leveraging personal strengths, and staying true to one’s faith and values. This episode not only provides practical insights into entrepreneurship but also serves as an inspiring narrative of how faith can guide and sustain us through various life phases.

For more on Hayden’s journey and insights into Christian entrepreneurship, tune in to The Createur Podcast, where faith and business meet. Listen to the full episode via your favorite podcast app, or via the Spotify player embedded below.

The Createur Podcast is the media arm of the Creatuer Conference & Pitch Competition on the campus of Olivet Nazarene University, April 15-16, 2024. Apply to attend for free, or pitch your idea to win a share of the $15,000 investment pool.

To learn more about the McGraw School of Business at Olivet, contact the Office of Admissions at or 800-648-1463.

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Seth Hurd

Seth Hurd (’06, ’08 MOL, ’12 M. Hist) is the founder of Manx Solutions. He lives in St. Louis, MO with his wife Amanda, and daughters Ava and Emery.

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