What's Your Digital iQ

Putting technology and trends to work for healthcare marketing

Ben Harben, Associate Creative Director of Innovation bharben

How to create eDetails that HCPs look forward to reviewing


Put yourself in an health care provider’s (HCP) shoes for a moment. Imagine your busy day of seeing patients. It is now 2:45pm, you have so many things on your mind, and there is so much still left to do when you realize you have a 3:00pm meeting with a pharmaceutical sales representatives. How would you feel about this upcoming meeting?

Let’s be honest, most HCPs would not look forward to this meeting.

At GSW Worldwide we counter this feeling by creating engaging multimedia eDetail experiences that attract HCPs to the brand’s message. However, there are times where even the best visuals and interactions aren’t enough.

So we asked, how could we create an eDetail that’s more engaging?

When asked this, we were reminded of a similar question asked for trade shows. We answered this by creating iQ.rival our turnkey gaming platform for trades show exhibits. By applying gaming to exhibits we not only found that we increased exhibit traffic, but we also increased return traffic. This was due to participants wanting to not only play, but they wanted to replay to beat or keep their high score.

With that said, our obvious answer to making an eDetail more engaging was to combine Rival with iQ.mercury our in-market iPad eDetailing platform.

Now put yourself back in an HCP’s shoes. Imagine knowing in your upcoming 3:00pm meeting you’ll be able to compete against Dr. Harben, a local HCP who always brags about beating you in golf. How would you feel about this upcoming meeting now?

We took these feelings into consideration when creating our latest prototype:

Rival IVA – the gaming layer applied to traditional IVAs to make eDetailing informative and entertaining


How the Kinect could Retain Patient Motor Skills


Our first experiment Circuit, created by iQ back in June of 2010, was developed to make everyday interactions better. Because 15 minutes in the exam room is never enough time to treat and manage a chronic illness, physicians need to understand the patient’s daily journey. Circuit helped with this by utilizing the iPad’s accelerometer to do simple range of motion tests like moving a ball over a mountain to test relative dexterity. Tests like this, would be uploaded to a detailed dashboard that patients can view, share with their physician, or append to their electronic medical record.

Since developing Circuit, we’ve been following health related apps and games to see how we could enhance Circuit. Today we’re most interested in Microsoft’s Kinect PlayFit, a new dashboard that tracks fitness activity on the Xbox. Kinect PlayFit’s aggregation of data from games like Dance Central 2, Your Shape Fitness Evolved 2012, Kinect Star Wars, and others is used to provide personal fitness stats. This service allows players to earn achievements, gamerscores, and avatar awards.

As we looked into the Kinect PlayFit, we we’re excited to see their use of stats like calories burned and daily streak. We quickly started to see how these stats could be applied and modified to manage chronic illness. For instance, say a patient’s disease state affects their flexibility, the Kinect could be used to record their flexibility baseline. Each day, patients could try to match or beat this baseline in a game. During game play, data could be captured showing the retention or improvement of their flexibility over time. Achievements could be awarded for retention, improvement, and daily streaks. Buddy scores could be shown to motivate patients to retain or improve their flexibility.

So we asked, why can’t brands create their own Kinect game to help patients retain and even improve motor skills affected by their disease state?

Our latest prototype Circuit 2.0 contains our thoughts on how brands could do just that.


Why Pharma Should be Detailing at Patients’ Homes

Brand Visit

Remember the days of the door to door salesman? Perhaps you recall the vacuum salesman pouring dirt on your carpet to show how well their product worked. Those days seemed to have been put behind us with the advent of product websites, product performance videos on YouTube, and Amazon product reviews. However, today we’re seeing a resurgence in the at home sale. Take Liberty Mutual for example, when customers are curious about their products, they will send a local representative to discuss their services with you and your family so that the household can ask questions and make an informed decision together.

When making life altering decisions, like starting a prescription, wouldn’t it be nice if you, along with your caregivers, family, and friends, could speak with a brand representative?

Now I know you’re probably thinking:

“Shouldn’t customers get all their information from their HCP?”
“Isn’t the branded website and patient education materials enough?”
“Customers don’t typically trust Pharma. Why would they want to talk to them?”

I admit, there are a some healthy discussions to be had around this topic. However, my challenge to Pharma marketers is to consider the possibility. As we continue to see a resurgence in at home sales, brand transparency, and personalized customer service we should consider changing how we market too.

Our latest prototype Brand Visit contains our thoughts on how detailing to potential patients at their homes could work.


Improving Patient Adherence Through Mobile


Helping patients adhere to their medication has been a long time challenge. There’s an array of adherence challenges, such as, forgetfulness, too busy, cost, experienced (and potential) side effects, and the list goes on. Today, there are plenty of devices that work to address and solve these challenges. For example, devices helping with forgetfulness can range from basic weekly pill organizers to the more advanced GlowCaps. A downside to devices like these is that they must added to one’s environment and routine. However, with the advancements of mobile technologies, we’re able to replace adherence devices with apps. These mobile apps are added to one’s mobile device which may already be apart of their environment and routine.

Below is a listing of mobile applications that address specific adherence challenges:

CHALLENGE – Forgetfulness

RxmindMe (A)
Created for users who forget to take their pills, RxmindMe allows you to create nine types of reminders – daily, every “X” days, hourly, weekly, on specific dates, on a specific day of the month, and on a specific week of the month. It allows unlimited prescription entities to track all your medications.

OptumRx (B)
The upcoming mobile app from OptumRx will allow members to fully manage their medications with the convenience of a mobile app. Subscribers will be able to set reminders and track their medication consumption for all their prescription and non-prescription medications.


Duet Health (C)
Duet uses reminders, triggers, and reward systems to reinforce behavior that results in more positive outcomes. This experience creates engagement that is personalized, interesting, and informative making adherence a desired event rather than an added chore.

Avatar Alerts
A prototype by iQ that turns adherence into a rewarding game. By applying a gaming layer to adherence, users are more likely to take time out of their busy schedule to receive rewards such as points, level ups, and more.


Walgreens (D)
Designed to make everyday tasks easier, with convenient features, the Walgreens app offers mobile coupons. Users can get access exclusive mobile coupons available for in-store purchases. For example, for transferring your prescription to Walgreens, users can receive $25.

Caremark by CVS allows users to check drug coverage and cost from their mobile device. This feature allows you to discover to actual costs rather than assuming the cost is going to be to high for you.

CHALLENGE – Experienced Side Effects

Fluent 2.0
A prototype by iQ that communicates side effects that may be expected during time of use. Because you may be unaware of your medication’s known side effects, Fluent 2.0 sends text messages during your treatment to educate you on what you may experience and when.


Motivating Positive Health Behaviors Via Mobile

Mobile Inputs

Within healthcare today, it seems as if everyone wants to capitalize on mobile technologies. From smartphones to tablets, we’ve seen tons of apps and devices for everything from nutrition to disease-specific services. Out of these apps and devices, it’s the ones that utilize specific mobile technologies that not only stand out from the rest but tend to meet the user’s needs best. Below are a listing of technologies available within the iPhone and healthcare-related use cases:

A. Text messaging

, aka EndoGoddess, is known for her text messages to diabetic patients. Jennifer sent personalized texts reminding her patients to check their blood glucose levels and to educate them on why checking is important. Jennifer found that texting worked best for her younger patients as they always had their mobile phones on them. Since using texts, Jennifer has been working with Duet Health, a resource for mobile patient education for specialties ranging from OB/GYN to cardiology, diabetes, orthopedics and more.

B. Calendar

RxmindMe utilizes the calendar to set notifications to remind prescription users to take their medication. Users can schedule notifications for multiple prescriptions, dates and times to accommodate any prescription regiment.

C. Internet

With WiFi access and 4G networks becoming more accessible, mobile websites are now a standard. Mobile-optimized websites, such as www.webmd.com, make it easier for users to touch, read and experience content.

D. Apps

You can’t talk about mobile health without talking apps. Apps, like Carb Counting with Lenny, are applications that are installed and used on mobile devices. These health apps can leverage specific mobile device capabilities like the accelerometer or multi-touch. This leveraging tends to deliver apps that are more interesting and more often answer a specific need.

E. Geo-location

With geo-location, mobile users are not only able to see their current location, but track where they’ve been, how fast they’ve traveled and how high they’ve climbed. RunKeeper uses this technology to track, measure and improve a user’s fitness whether they’re walking, running or cycling.

F. Charge/SYNC

Devices can be connected to the charge/SYNC input to expand upon the mobile device’s technologies to offer additional capabilities. Withings blood pressure monitor connects to the iPhone and is then operated through an app to track, measure, and record the user’s blood pressure.

G. Video

At home aerobic workouts are no longer constrained to the living room. The cable station ExerciseTV offers instructional workout videos for download through iTunes. Although this example is downloadable, mobile-optimized videos can be streamed online, making videos more accessible to mobile devices.

H. Camera

The app Instant Heart Rate utilizes the camera to monitor the blood flow in the user’s index finger to track and record their pulse. Hard to believe? See how it works in our Digital Mythbuster video on YouTube.

I. Video conferencing

Video conferencing, also referred to as telemedicine or telesurgery, has been utilized by healthcare to coach doctors through surgery, perform check ups with patients, and offer speech therapy and healthcare services to remote areas. Although this is typically used on desktop computers or custom devices, there’s no reason why this couldn’t be done on mobile devices, too.

J. Find my friends

Apple’s iPhone app, Find My Friends, uses geo-location to track the location of your friends. Technologies like this have been utilized by caregivers to track patients that tend to wander away from their care facilities. Again, although this is typically used on desktop computers or custom devices, there’s no reason why this couldn’t be done on mobile devices, too.

K. Phone

This most basic feature of the smart phone has been used within healthcare to call for help, communicate with healthcare providers and receive information through automated systems.

L. Headphone jack

Although the primary use for the headphone jack is audio, some devices utilize this technology to connect to other devices. Jawbone’s Up, a wristband that tracks and measures fitness and sleep, connects to the iPhone through the headphone jack to download data to the mobile device.

Within a saturated market of healthcare apps and devices, it may be daunting to step into the mobile space. However, as we’ve seen here, strategies that utilize specific mobile technologies as tools, not toys, tend to not only be notable, but more importantly, extremely useful to the end user.


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