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How to introduce a product to the market?

How to introduce a product to the market?

Photographer:Fotograaf: Loraine Bodewes Fotografie

Make a Move Career Week

Wednesday morning in the Crowne Plaza Hotel. A low buzz comes from the lobby, where students are gathering for the second day of the Make a Move Career Week. For the first time, Make a Move has organised a day focused on German students and companies. “The students who come to this career week are mainly studying at the School of Business and Economics”, says Daan Eijwoudt, logistics manager at Make a Move. “Many of them are German, so it would be strange if we didn’t act on that.” The response of the companies was enthusiastic. “We went from three German companies last year to ten this year.” But this doesn’t mean the audience today is solely German; on the contrary, most people are speaking English. “We have presentations in German and English – we’re also aiming at students who want to work abroad”, says Eijwoudt.

One of the companies presenting is Philips. “We’ve had positive experiences with students from Maastricht”, says Koen van den Broek, controller of the Philips Aachen website. He and his colleagues will give a workshop to 19 selected students. “We looked for people who showed they have an international interest. For instance, did they study abroad? We also looked at their extracurricular activities. That might be serving on the board of a student association, but also organising an event or doing something special abroad. Something that makes them stand out.”

Today’s task is to make an investment plan for a new Philips product: the OLED. This organic LED lamp is very small and thin, comes in all shapes and sizes, and can react to movement and sound. The students should think about what market Philips should introduce this product on, how much it will cost and when the investment will be paid back. Soon the groups are deep in discussion. “If we cut out round lamps, we’re wasting material”, one of the students says. “Who cares?” responds another. “As long as it makes money.” At another table, they’re already further innovating the product. “If you put them on the window and have solar panels on the back, they can generate their own electricity.”

After sixty minutes it’s time for presentations. Some groups aimed at the fashion industry, others thought airline companies would be an ideal target group. Finally, Philips shows what they came up with themselves: in collaboration with designers, they made design lamps that are unique pieces. An idea with a fair chance for success, according to the participants. “That’s a really cool product.”

 

Cleo Freriks

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