An early partnership
As any digital publisher will tell you, simply building something does not necessarily mean that the audience will come. And this was particularly true of an audience that was only just coming to grips with what the internet offered.
From the early days, Poole knew that he had to find an organisation that had a strong connection with the target market, as this would provide a means by which to increase awareness of GrownUps.
“We looked at organisations around the place who were in that kind of space and SeniorNet were teaching people, at that stage, how to turn on computers and where to go to from there. It was really basic stuff.”
While SeniorNet’s role in familiarising users with the internet was certainly an added bonus, it was actually the organisation’s massive database that presented the biggest opportunity to GrownUps.
“They had about twenty or thirty thousand members at that time,” says Poole.
This provided a great starting point, from which the website was able to grow a loyal readership.
“GrownUps became an online lifestyle magazine, social club and brain training hub,” says Poole.
Alongside a steady stream of articles on issues relevant to readers older than 50, GrownUps also arranges social meet-ups, runs free classifieds and publishes annoying addictive brain-training puzzles on a regular basis.
Over the decade, GrownUps has stockpiled over 6,000 articles, many of which have retained their relevance and can be republished when certain topical issues arise.
Poole says that GrownUps also has a very active community, which guides the editorial team toward stories they’d like to see covered.
“A large part of our job is getting feedback from the readers to see what interests them and what they’d like to see more of.”
This approach has certainly proved successful, with the website pulling in between 80,000 to 100,000 unique readers on average every month.