A nut grower harvests consumer-provided content for its new web site

Royal Hawaiian Orchards lets consumers share photos and short descriptions of how they 'live aloha.'

Allison Enright

Royal Hawaiian Orchards LP, which bills itself as the largest grower of macadamia nuts in the world, launched its first consumer-facing web site in November. The site serves the needs of consumers looking to research and buy its branded products online, and also is designed to serve resellers. It includes a contact page for prospective resellers and a password-protected area that will let Royal Hawaiian Orchards’ existing resellers download marketing and ordering materials.

The site is built using the enterprise edition of Web Cube’s e-commerce and content management software. The site took about five months to design and develop. The e-commerce and content managements systems together cost $17,000 up-front and $700 per month, Web Cube says.

The site includes a blend of content produced by Royal Hawaiian Orchards, brand ambassadors like surfer Laird Hamilton and Olympic swimmer Dana Vollmer, and consumers who share photos and 140-character descriptions of how they “live aloha,” or apply the traditional Hawaiian spirit in their lives. All content components are managed through the content management system. For example, consumers enter their aloha descriptions into a text box on the web site and click Browse to upload a photo. Web Cube’s content management system batches these submissions together and e-mails notifications to Royal Hawaiian’s web team. Once approved, they can upload them for public display in bulk. 

Other social components include a blog and a Facebook plug-in that lets consumers logged into Facebook to simultaneously post comments about products on the site and on Facebook. Consumers can also Like or tweet about a product from the product page and rate and review products.

On the business side, a “broker downloads” link in the page footer takes resellers to a log-in page. Although it is not fully in use for business buyers yet, Royal Hawaiian Orchards plans to use it to share marketing material with them. Right now, the brand’s ambassadors use it to grab logos and pass information to Royal Hawaiian Orchards.


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