The My Navi conference hall in Japan was abuzz with excitement recently when 100 women gathered to participate in an exclusive event hosted by Australian Macadamias and My Navi Women, Japan’s largest working women’s information portal.
Women of influence
My Navi Women is very influential, boasting membership of 340,000 women throughout Japan. It targets working women aged in their 20s, 30s and 40s who are passionate about work, health, beauty and cooking. They’re hungry for information, particularly relating to health and wellbeing, so a tie-up with Australian Macadamias is a great fit and a perfect way to spread the macadamia message to a highly receptive audience in one of our core markets.
The theme of the event was “Enhance your health and beauty with easy macadamia recipes.” The event was hosted by popular Japanese food personality, Shiori, who presented information about the benefits of macadamias and then prepared her original macadamia recipes that she had created specially for the event, with tasting plates available for guests, of course!
The 100 women who attended the event were selected from a pool of over 300 applicants and were chosen based on their social media influence. They eagerly photographed the prepared dishes and posted on their blogs and social media channels before, during and after the event.
Australian Macadamias representative, Eiko Mochizuki, opened the event, and introduced Shiori, the evening’s special guest.
Shiori shot to fame in Japan 10 years ago with the publication of her first book, Recipes For Your Boyfriend. She has since gained notoriety as a popular food stylist, chef and blogger, demonstrating her original recipes at events, on TV and in magazines. She has also gone on to publish a number of other recipe books.
Shiori’s extensive travels have taken her to a vast array of destinations globally, where she has learned to cook many different types of local food and she has visited Australia, although at the time, she confesses she didn’t realise it was the birthplace of macadamias!
Shiori was asked to create two easy-to-make Japanese recipes using macadamias and she unveiled them for the first time at this event.
Selling the whole story
While cooking with and tasting macadamias is the most satisfying way to understand their versatility, the event offered up the opportunity to introduce guests to some of the other layers of the macadamia story. As Shiori prepared to demonstrate her recipes, Eiko Mochizuki introduced guests to some of the other compelling elements of the macadamia, touching on the following themes:
- Many young working women in Japan often choose not to eat, due to being too busy or lazy to cook or being on a restrictive diet
- Neglecting to eat properly can negatively impact on a woman’s health and wellbeing
- Macadamias are a great choice because they’re quick, easy and delicious and contain a host of nutrients including monounsaturated fat, vitamins and minerals
- Australian macadamias are grown and processed in a clean and green environment, as seen in the “Life of a Macadamia” video
The novelty of cracking
Shiori led guests in a demonstration of how to crack a macadamia nut before inviting everyone to try it for themselves. This created great amusement among the group, and the room soon filled with the sound of laughter and cracking. Comments included:
“Wow, I have never eaten macadamia nuts in the shell. So delicious!”
“It’s a bit difficult to crack!”
“This is the first time I’ve tried this. Where can I buy it?”
The proof is in the eating
As appetites peaked, Shiori got down to business, demonstrating her two new macadamia recipes:
Inari sushi: crushed macadamias mixed with a herb called shiso were enveloped in sushi rice that was then wrapped in bean curd.
Macadamia miso dip: macadamias were mixed with miso and other ingredients and used as a dip to accompany vegetables and boiled chicken. Shiori highlighted that it would taste delicious with almost anything! She served it with fresh baguette and macadamia oil.
As she prepared the food, Shiori highlighted that although macadamias are traditionally associated with western food or sweets, they actually work beautifully in Japanese cuisine. “The creaminess and sweetness of the macadamia goes so well with vegetables,” she said.
Guests were each served a tasting plate of the prepared dishes, along with attractive tablecloths and napkins to optimize the opportunity for beautiful food photography. As an experienced food photographer, Shiori guided guests on how best to style and take their shots. Armed with this expert advice, guests enthusiastically snapped and posted their images on social media, with Shiori also posting several of her own photos.
With photography complete, guests wasted no time in tasting the food Shiori had prepared, with high praise flowing throughout the venue.
A positive impression
As the event drew to a close, Shiori reinforced the health benefits and taste of macadamias, and encouraged everyone to incorporate them into their daily lives.
The event garnered overwhelmingly positive feedback from all who attended, with comments including:
“Macadamias will satisfy an empty stomach. Rather than choosing not to eat and feeling stressed out, I will now eat these good nuts and make myself healthy.”
“My skin has given me a lot of trouble lately. Macadamias should help improve it!”
“I would like to try some of the macadamia recipes on the official website.”
My Navi’s post-event wrap attracted almost double the forecast page views in the week after the event, with visitors spending an average of 2 minutes engaging with the content – impressive considering the audience is time-poor working women!
In addition to coverage on the Australian Macadamias Japanese website and social media channels and those of Shiori, the event gained widespread traction via the blog and social media posts of the 100 attendees, creating substantial reach to a range of new audiences. Mass reach for the entire campaign was almost 895,000.
Once again, the value of these events was highlighted by the online activity and goodwill it generated. There’s no better way to spread the macadamia message than by showing what can be created in an intimate, expert setting. We extend our thanks to everyone involved!