Meredith Interactive Sees Record Growth For Web Properties

  • by March 19, 2003
Meredith Interactive, the division of Meredith Corporation responsible for its websites, announced today that it has experienced record growth for its Web properties over the last several months. BHG.com, the online companion to Better Homes and Gardens magazine, for example, was recently named among the top five home sites by comScore. Meredith Interactive’s distinctive branded content is a primary driver behind the recent company growth.

"We have been committed to providing compelling content around home and family throughout our extended history," said Doug Olson, Vice President of Interactive Media. "Americans’ renewed interest in home life, cocooning, and yearning for tradition makes our offering and perspective particularly topical right now."

Meredith Interactive, which counts sites including BHG.com (Better Homes and Gardens Online), LHJ.com (Ladies’ Home Journal Online), Americanbaby.com (American Baby Online) and HealthyKids.com in its interactive family, reaches more than 6 million unique users during every life stage, from young professional to homemaker to mom. The recent successes include:

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  • Site traffic. Traffic across the network of sites grew 123% for BHG.com and more than 600% for LHJ.com from November 2001. In addition, BHG.com was named in the top 5 Home sites, and in the top 6 sites for Women, according to comScore.

  • Magazine subscriptions. The publisher also has seen an 83% increase in the gross orders of magazine subscriptions through its core Web sites, from July through December 2002, compared with a year earlier.

  • Advertising. Finally, Meredith Interactive experienced a 129% increase in online advertising revenue for Q4 of 2002 compared to Q4 of 2001. This increase has significantly contributed to its parent company’s positive Q2 2002 results. (Meredith Corporation recently reported an operating profit increase of 21% and double-digit advertising growth for its overall publishing segment.)

    Meredith Interactive has been able to grow and flourish in a difficult economic environment, while many others in the interactive space have withered. In December 2002, as part of the company’s "Early Family Formation" strategy, Meredith acquired the American Baby Group from Primedia and has already begun to integrate americanbaby.com into its other online properties. The strategy, which is designed to enable Meredith to extend its brands to the rapidly growing young family market, builds on Meredith’s existing leadership in the home and family marketplace, and will give the organization fuel for the next wave of growth.

    "We now have the capability to reach women of all ages - from pre-conception through empty nesting - and we can address the issues that matter to them most. Our interactive properties make a clear contribution to this - by attracting a new, younger audience segment and by allowing us to convert that audience into magazine subscribers," said Steve Lacy, President of the Publishing Group at Meredith.

    Meredith Interactive’s unparalleled content has become increasingly relevant as social, economic and political developments have fostered a revitalized focus on home and family. The online publisher’s goal - to help its audience turn inspiration to action - resonates particularly well as a greater number of consumers seek household comfort, ways to express individuality and money saving tips and projects. Additionally, Meredith’s stable of trusted brands appeal to cautious consumers and the popularity of women’s Web sites continues to grow steadily, with the latest stats from comScore charting visitors to such sites at 34.8 million in December alone.

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