Coffeelovers use a pressure cooker

May 14th UMIO’s Service Science Factory held a one day Hackathon at SBE: a collective event addressing an innovation problem for Maastricht iconic coffee roaster Blanche Dael (140 years young) and it’s spin-off brand “Coffeelovers”.

105 students in 21 teams from MSc Strategic Marketing (course marketing innovation management) tackled the question of how Coffeelovers can foster brand engagement of the young target group in order to elevate ambassadorship. The target given was to realise impact and create ambassadorship for the Coffeelovers brand.

The purpose of a Hackathon is to bring a tightly focused outside-in perspective to the company involved. The objective is constrained within a budget of 5000 Euro to ensure practical and ready-to-implement solutions.

The Hackathon is an example of how SBE not just links students with national companies but also with ‘local heroes’, to strengthen the link with local entrepreneurs and the region.

For students it develops their future strategic insight and serves them with a hands-on experience of Design Thinking: the pressure cooker approach of getting to a validated client centered solution in one day. The required speed of action was not always the easiest part for the students involved.

For Christophe de Warrimont, Head of Sales and Marketing with Maison Blanche Dael & Coffeelovers it was a memorable day: We want to develop a fan base among students in Maastricht for our brands. When they leave Maastricht after a couple of years, they are potential ambassadors in other geographic regions where we plan to expand. The input of 105 academically trained students was a big boost and a unique opportunity for our company.

The Hackathon delivered loads of input, lots of positive ideas with which we can get started right away. The aim was to create maximum impact in a short time with small hands-on ideas. Especially the personalization of the coffee cups is an idea with a lot of potential impact which is relatively easy to implement.

In short: there was a lot of positive energy floating around and that was very exciting to experience.