It's Not Easy Being Green, Unless You're ALOHA, that is
Elisabeth Brier and Constantin Bisanz

If you haven’t heard, health is hot and leading a holistic, green lifestyle is back en vogue.

Society’s newfound reverence for things such as kale, quinoa, and of course, avocado may be considered the apex of this movement, but turns there is so much more to it.

In recognition of this sort of “green crusade” numerous companies have sprung up promising to be the be all and end all of a healthy lifestyle.

They all claim to have the best products out there, but all too often fall short on their outlandish guarantees.

ALOHA, a health & wellness startup, however, has broken this mold by actually offering plant-based nutrition products that live up to their claims.

Yet beyond having an inherently great and disruptive product, ALOHA has been able to reach the level it has today by remaining obstinately authentic.

The company's founder, Constantin Bisanz, sat down with TechDay to discuss how he achieved this.

As a new wave of health consciousness has overtaken modern society, how does ALOHA become part of this narrative and join the conversation?

Over the last few years, people have become far more interested in holistic health & wellness and the kinds of foods they are nourishing their bodies with. The reason I started ALOHA is that I wanted to become the healthiest, happiest version of myself but I was so confused by all the conflicting messages out there. There are countless brands claiming to be healthy, but hiding sugars and chemicals in their products. I wanted ALOHA to be different; I started a brand that deeply cares about using high-quality ingredients that are not only good for you, but are tasty and affordable, too.

How are you able to differentiate ALOHA products from big name competitors in terms of value props, different markets, brand voice etc?

What sets us apart is our authenticity. At the brand’s inception, we teamed up with like-minded health experts (you can check out aloha.com/experts). We combined traditional wisdoms and practices (like ayurveda) and the latest scientific research to come up with products that truly make you feel great. We don’t take any shortcuts. We only use the highest-quality, certified organic, whole foods ingredients, which are all thoroughly tested for quality and taste. We are a value-driven challenger brand, and we are proud to have higher quality ingredients than many of the big-name competitors. Thanks to all of this, we were recently named the number one protein powder in the market by a top publication in the space. And lastly, we firmly believe in building authentic relationships with our consumers and providing a high-quality experience, which brings us to the next question.

With a pretty strong Instagram presence, how does ALOHA utilize social media to gain new users and foster brand visibility?

Social media is super important to us because it allows us to connect with our consumer and share our brand beliefs and philosophies. ALOHA is far more than just a food products company; we are a lifestyle brand. We use our social media to educate consumers on our Five Pillars (nourish, move, think, relax, connect), which are the foundation of our brand. We believe you can only be your happiest and healthiest self when all five aspects are working together in harmony.

Now that so much product discovery is done online and on Instagram, we work closely with influencers and tastemakers in the space to put our products in front of health-conscious individuals. Instagram is so visual - it’s almost like it was made for showcasing drool-worthy recipes. We love seeing what creations our fans and followers come up with using our products. And best of all, we try to share as much user-generated content as possible, because it’s a great way to connect with our followers. And lastly, we make it a point to respond to every single comment and message we receive, because we truly care about our consumers’ feedback and input.

What other marketing strategies have you used that have successfully gained awareness for ALOHA?

From day one, we teamed up with like-minded health experts, such as doctors, nutritionists, and health coaches. We wanted to create products that they would actually consume themselves. These people are the true innovators and tastemakers in the space, and they helped us gain awareness and attract fans. But at the end of the day, our strongest marketing tool is our amazing products. It’s amazing how far word of mouth can take you. We get e-mails from consumers saying, “I tried one of your bars at my friend’s house and ordered from your website on the spot.” It’s amazing how hooked people become after just one taste.

What advice could you offer startup founders attempting to bolster startups involving food? How is it different?

My advice is to focus on quality; never sacrifice quality for convenience. Challenge big food - food is the foundation of our health and well-being and there are far too many bad, processed food products out there. Skip the bullshit, and use truly good-for-you ingredients. And finally, authenticity is key - build an authentic brand that truly cares, because big food will never be able to compete with that.

What's coming up next for ALOHA?

We’re seeing really exciting momentum with more and more retailers requesting to carry ALOHA. Adding distribution is super important for us since our mission is to make superfoods accessible for everyone. And of course, we have some exciting new products in the pipeline, but those are under wraps for now!