ep today unveils a dramatic redesign of its Website which debuts with its annual autism issue. The updated Website marks the second step in a rolling redesign of eparent.com, which began with the combined re-architecture of “ep special needs connect.”
The ep website redesign enhances the aesthetics of eparent.com, while fostering participation and interactivity between readers, content creators and marketers in order to meet the demands of a new and evolving media in the special needs community.
“This is an exciting opportunity for ep to meet the ever-changing demands of the special needs audience while continuing to deliver the award-winning journalism that made ep so essential and helpful to our readers,” said Joe Valenzano , CEO at ep World, Inc. “Moreover, this redesign offers fantastic opportunities to deepen existing relationships by further engaging the special needs community.
The redesign allows ep to put information and education at the center of social media by creating new opportunities for content creators, the special needs community and marketers to participate in the conversation in real time, as it unfolds on our Website. It is yet another way to bring ep to life, augmenting its successful digital publication now in its 44th consecutive year of publication.
Tell me about the redesign Website in general and what you were trying to accomplish.
One of the things that we really wanted to do was to combine ep magazine architecture with ep special needs connect architecture to start to re-energize the Website so that we could begin to have a lot of voices in it; voices where ideas can be shared and families can connect on best practices for their loved ones with special needs.
The other underlining goal was to combine content, data and the conversation on the same page in a seamless way to enable new kinds of connections and relationships that people can have. We wanted the conversation in the page to show up in the social media stream as well, and also to make a very clean, open page format that had a lot of ability for horizontal navigation and drilling down. Most of all we wanted to provide a forum for families to share ideas and experiences and to eliminate the age-old feeling that they are all alone!
The release announcing the redesign said there would be a greater focus on special needs connect. How so?
ep Special Needs Connect’s Search & Respond enables you to reach out and interact with other families and caregivers who are just like you and can help you, using their own knowledge and experience. As with the people in the following situations, you will be able to post your questions on the site, so it can be read by other parents, caregivers, physicians, dentists, therapists, teachers, or people with special needs who’ve been in your situation—and you get to read their response. So, perhaps a mom in New Jersey is desperately in need of a pediatric special needs dentist for her son who has autism. Or, perhaps a military family stationed at Norfolk, VA has a child recently diagnosed with a mitochondrial disorder, and the family would like to speak with a physician with experience in this field. Maybe a family is simply looking for the best wheelchair to assist their son in his desire to compete in wheelchair basketball. Search & Respond allows you to reach out and touch someone in a network that has been designed with you in mind based on over four decades of work in the special needs arena..
What’s the next step for eparent.com?
We are going to be expanding our contributor base whether it’s digital journalists, authors, bloggers, academics, teachers, physicians or our readers who have topic- specific knowledge. Plus, to continue to expand the new social platform through updates in a lot of different ways to make it more social mediaequse. One of the things that’s important is what we’re doing here, in a sense, is extending the ep website to lots of contributors who produce content that is valuable to the ep readers. Those contributors and staffers are helping to aggregate audiences that are interested in those kinds of things. We become a place where people talk and exchange their issues, and there’s a forum for like-minded people. Sign up and Register for the new ep Website…….it is free…..and it will provide you with access to resources at your fingertips.
It’s an exciting time for ep and we invite you to view the new site, drop by the reader feedback and let us know your thoughts.