Henry Jicha
Henry Jicha
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Sometimes, all it takes is a nice, simple network with really tasteful tweaks to get the job done, and the OpenWine Consortium is a stunning example that’s only become more graceful since we last wrote about them in March.

This global industry association is “on a mission to improve the world of wine,” and if they’re as good with wine as they are with the impressive fine details of their network, I think they’ll succeed.

Most obvious, take note of how they’ve used the Language Editor feature to change the titles of some of their main page modules. On the network’s Main page they call their blog module, “Highlights from the Community.” Doing so gives the network’s blogs a more cultured feel, and encourages members to create content that will be featured in the “Highlights.”

Perhaps most creative is the clever use of a text box to create a “Special Thanks” area on the main page, currently in appreciation of a member who worked on the network’s logo. Just like the “Highlights from the Community” title, there’s no better way to get your members to contribute good material than to thank them publicly and prominently for it!

All of this nuance comes from a Main page with a plain white background and a relatively small, black-and-white logo. OpenWineConsortium truly is a great study in how to do simplicity well, and proves beyond doubt that you don’t need to get flashy to create an amazing and successful network.