Local students branch out into online sales

MARQUETTE– It’s not a typical lecture for NMU students in an eCommerce Marketing Class after creating a product to sell for a class assignment. The UPockets are a hit, with sales from Hawaii all the way to Texas.

The class brainstormed multiple product ideas such as coffee, and a phone pocket. According to students-it turns out coffee has a lot of regulations. Everyone carries around a big wallet and phone, so they decided to try and make things a little easier.

“The text book for that class is about 800 pages long and about $250 for the students. When I first looked at it I thought it’s going to be a really hard semester, but then what about pitching to the students the idea of developing a product, getting that product made, and actually selling it online,” Professor Derek Hall said. “That’s the purpose of the class, eCommerce marketing, sell something online. So beta test week we basically made the money back that I had spent on buying the product.”

The class brainstormed multiple product ideas pitching them all to Hall, who funded the business personally. UPockets were selected based on timeliness and shipping. Students did target marketing, created social media, digital advertising, and a website.

“Have everything all in one spot and everyone always has their phone on them so we decided to do these pockets,” Market student Hazel Foster said. “Then we we’re trying to come up with a design and where we wanted to target them. We decided that we should just keep it local with the U.P. and then we have the Great Lakes versions. On the phone is what they’re mainly for but my friend has a pocket in her so whenever she is crossing the bridge she can conveniently keep her four dollars in there so it’s ready to go.”

Students also suggested using the pockets to store registration and insurance. Positive feedback has been given all around for the first time online salesmen.

Hall said it has been educational for everyone involved.

Visit UPockets for more information.