New mother of one, Bognor resident and digital mumpreneur Catherine Jones launched Family Friendly Online on 1st February 2017. The service aims to provide information about local family friendly events, activities and resources, and offers promotions for businesses who want to reach those families.
A qualified teacher of 15 years’ experience, Catherine started to collate information about local children’s activities when she struggled to find out what was happening in her local community during her maternity leave.
“I joined lots of different local Facebook groups for mums, but soon got fed up of trawling multiple news feeds every week to find what I was looking for. So I created my own Facebook page called Family Friendly Bognor & Chichester to try and collate all of that information.”
Starting as a social media feed in November 2016, this resource quickly became popular, achieving over 1000 likes in just the first 6 weeks with a reach of over 30,000.
As a busy new mum, Catherine was quickly overwhelmed with requests for promotion from local groups and businesses, but also recognised a gap in the market and the potential for founding her own business that could be run from home, allowing her a level of flexibility to work around her baby’s needs that teaching could not offer.
Catherine has developed Family Friendly Online into a unique family-focused site with topical articles, events calendar, business listings and distinctive branding.
“There are lots of events websites out there, but I found my niche by looking at other events pages and seeing their issues. Other sites may fail to be comprehensive, targeted, current or user-friendly. This is how we aim to be different. Parents don’t have the time for complex search functions when trying to find their local softplay centre on a rainy Saturday; they need a quick, easy to use, up-to-date resource. I can help with that whilst also supporting my local community.”
Catherine lives in Bognor Regis with her husband, 1 year old son and Poppy the rescue dog,Visit Family Friendly Online