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Contently Case Story: How Lifetime Daily Used Tech to Scale Its Content

By Erin Nelson September 14th, 2016

Harold, a burly 66-year-old man, was devastated when he lost his wife. Exhausted from depression, he could barely get out of bed, let alone run his business. After a few sessions with psychologist Dr. Jacqueline Simon Gunn, Harold took her advice and began an endurance training regimen. Each day, Harold increased the distance he rode his bike and lifted more weights. Slowly, he grew stronger. Dr. Gunn’s endurance routine didn’t just strengthen Harold’s actual heart; in pushing through his physical pain, Harold found a will to live.

While the story sounds like a captivating Oprah episode, it is, in fact, an anecdote from an article on Lifetime Daily, an online publication geared toward empowering and informing adults over 55.

Launched in July 2016, Lifetime Daily’s goal is to provide older adults with credible information on medical, fitness, nutrition, financial, and lifestyle topics.

“People don’t just want to live longer—they want to have lives that are active and fulfilling,” said Victoria Bushnell, Lifetime Daily’s managing editor. “There’s a huge demographic shifting into this state of mind.”

To distinguish itself and address the needs of its target audience, Lifetime Daily focused on building a specialized team of writers. It tapped Contently’s talent network to source the majority of that team, using Contently’s technology platform to scale content production.

A pool of expertise on demand

Rather than hiring “any old blogger,” Bushnell organized the publication around a team of experts with experience in health and wellness for people over 55. By accessing the Contently talent pool, Bushnell was able to efficiently find the expertise required for the publication.

“For us, it’s about having expert writers—journalists and professionals who are renowned in their fields,” Bushnell said. “They also need to understand the mindset and behaviors of our audience.”

“These writers are top-notch professionals who know what they’re doing, are responsive, and come up with ideas that have a unique angle because of their experience”

In addition to Dr. Gunn, who has extensive experience counseling Baby Boomers and is the author of “The Psychological Benefits of Endurance Training,” Bushnell found writers like Monica Reinagel, a licensed nutritionist, and Jeanne Faulkner, a registered nurse, in the freelancer network.

“These writers are top-notch professionals who know what they’re doing, are responsive, and come up with ideas that have a unique angle because of their experience,” Bushnell said.

As it turns out, they’re also social media influencers, which came as a surprise to Bushnell: “When Monica Reinagel started pushing out her pieces, she’d send me messages saying, ‘Four hundred people just visited this piece I wrote because I posted it on Facebook!'”

Content technology

While talent was important for Lifetime Daily, it also needed a technology solution to manage its content operation.

“From a tech perspective, it’s not just about finding the right caliber of writers, it’s actually as or more important that we have a system for organizing and processing articles,” Bushnell explained.

The Contently platform allowed Bushnell to manage writer pitches, assign stories, follow story progress, and oversee the entirety of Lifetime Daily’s editorial production in one place.

“Editing is a time-consuming endeavor, and this simplifies the process,” Bushnell said. “The fact that I can assign a piece, give it a workflow, give it due dates, send them out the door, and be notified when a story comes in to edit—there’s just no way we could do that efficiently if we didn’t have a comprehensive editorial process with an assigned workflow.”

This combination of specialized talent and comprehensive technology has helped Lifetime Daily grow to meet the needs of a trillion-dollar senior market and compete with the industry’s biggest players.

“In today’s market, quality is key,” Bushnell added. “We need to efficiently create articles that are that are credible, intelligent, and informative, but do it in a cost-effective manner.”

Image by Getty
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