Supportive Care Services (The Patient Experience)

Supportive care program listings

Supportive Care Program Listings

Online coverage of the Cancer Center’s many supportive care programs was both sporadic and siloed. Broadening the scope of the Patient Experience project’s initial goal, to improve online information about our location and new patient induction process, I devised and built out a new section of the micro-site which integrated these disparate elements of supportive care into a directory of programs in integrative therapies and support groups.

There was also a major operational challenge to keep an up-to-date calendar of these many programs. Prior to my arrival, only PDF print pieces had been available, updated on a bi-monthly basis.

The Support Services Calendar

Embedded Support Services Calendar

 

I created a new operational process to feed group listings into a shared Gcal, which I then embedded onto the Cancer Center’s main site. This allowed group leaders to record and amend their own schedule in a dynamic form, without the delays of assembling a print listing, while also adding the Gcal’s many access, sharing and printing features to the online experience.

Social Media Campaign (The Patient Experience)

Screen shot 2014-11-24 at 2.08.06 PMAs our online “front door”, the Patient Experience microsite is the key portal for new and prospective patients at the Cancer Center. It was developed to be a crucial element of our patient accessibility features, and, as a means to communicate an approachable message about the Center’s mission, it is closely aligned with our social media activities.

Over the last 18 month, employing both traditional posts and a campaign of promoted posts, I have grown the Mass General Cancer Center’s Facebook page more than five fold. I also launched our Twitter channel to match the kick-off of our wider national awareness campaign, and it has gained a significant and accelerating following within the cancer care social media community.

This growth has been led by campaign and community blog posts and tweets, which are timed to match high traffic periods, with calls for follower engagement in response to prompts like “Tell us what’s everyday amazing in your life”. A post like this always runs with YouTube channel responses embedded on a dedicated the blog channel devoted to our Everyday Amazing national awareness marketing campaign.

To avoid fatigue from saturating our social media community with these postings, they have been interspersed with a wide variety of other content, which I have created to fit a schedule which covers multiple internal teams’ promotional needs. These include fundraising events, staff awards and achievements, and cancer related news from around the center and beyond.

By diversifying our social media offerings, I have been able to allow the Center to break down the barrier between its traditional website and its inbound marketing channels.

Integration Issues (Center for Cancer Research)

As I assessed the Center for Cancer Research’s (CfCR) online needs, it became clear to me that there was a significant challenge surrounding the research arm’s online relationship to the affiliated Cancer Center. From a web standpoint the CfCR seemed siloed, and although its audience of professional researchers was certainly distinct from the more patient-facing Cancer Center site, I felt that it was still important to indicate the real-world value of its research as part of such a prestigious organization.

The problem was compounded by a technical limitation within the wider hospital’s content management system, which wouldn’t allow the full merging of the two sites’ content under one branded top nav. Still, I strongly felt that both sites would benefit from highlighting their connections and shared mission.

My solution was three fold.

New Co-Branding Insignia

New Co-Branding Insignia

First, a new insignia was developed, which underlined that the CfCR (along with a number of other previously disparate linked groups and affiliates) was “An integral part of the Mass General Cancer Center”. Co-branding the Center for Cancer Research in this way allowed visitors to remain conscious of the connections between the two centers, and to perceive the main Cancer Center site as the online (and by extension operational) “home” for all visitors.

I also applied a tactic of establishing more patient-to-physician online content linking. For example, I brought several researchers on as contributors to the “What we talk about (when we talk about cancer)” community blog site, so that as they engaged on the site there would be overt links between these different constituencies.

Cross-linking of research news and events in the main site was also made much more robust, for example with a calendar for both researcher events and physician continuing medical education, mapped to display on both the CfCR site and the education and training section of the Cancer Center’s site.

Content Overhaul (Center for Cancer Research)

It was clear from the outset that any fundamental review of the Center for Cancer Research’s (CfCR) online presence must launch from assessing the effectiveness of the 40+ core laboratory micro-sites in engaging site visitors. The audience’s academic level must be considered too — quite distinct from other sites I manage — so it targets established and often very specialized professional researchers, along with post-doctoral fellows.

As such, I developed various new formatting designs for the laboratory sites, for example with small bursts of content available both in its searchable online form and in downloadable PDFs, for those looking to annotate and collate research findings off-line.

Redesigned Research Lab Pages

Redesigned Research Lab Pages

Beyond these developments, I concluded on reflection that this concern for the different type of research audience had been overstated in the site. High-level research content should not mean impenetrable limitations of site access and an austere presentation of this work. With so many laboratories, and several hundred staff, I felt it was would be very difficult for even academically advanced site visitors to really engage with its numerous studies and publications.

This conclusion was supported by the site’s analytics, which also reflected a higher than average bounce rate, suggesting that the site had a problem with its stickiness.

Although the core of the CfCR online content is this mass of research data and publications in each of the labs, the site had actually been suffering from this overwhelming quantity of valuable information.

Since so much of the research work carried on at the CfCR is very engaging to a research audience, my solution was to develop a new central news and events portal, intended to create a truly dynamic space with which researchers could engage.

CfCR News Page

CfCR News Page

This news portal includes a newly created welcome video by the center’s director, to show the center as approachable as well as studious, and a rotating spotlighted “Featured Lab” section, giving a foothold as a site visitor explored the site. There is also a large format recent publications slideshow, accompanied by informal images of relevant researchers.

This development allowed the center to be presented as a place attracting the highest quality of research work, and also humming with professional activity.

SEM Adwords campaign (Center for Cancer Research)

Managing our established SEM portfolio is already a core part of my role at the Cancer Center, including several thousand terms. As the overhaul of the Center for Cancer Research’s (CfCR) site progressed, it was crucial to support it with a targeted SEM Adwords campaign.

I began by creating keyword groups drawn from phrases used in the CfCR annual report because it includes numerous technical terms with low competition in Adwords, and high value in attracting our audience of specialist researchers to the center. I also redirected spend to follow the results of an analytics analysis of high traffic periods of the day and week. The increase in newly developed and cutting edge content on the site contributed to an improvement of the domain’s quality score, as did the addition of embedded youtube videos. I also increased the spend around the names of our Principal Investigators, to ensure we would own this traffic, as their numerous publications and conference presentations meant their reputations often preceded them.

As a result of these tactics, we were able to much more clearly tie this new online development to measurable traffic increases over the course of months around launch.

Planning and Development (What we talk about)

Initial Wireframe

Initial Wireframe

For the development of the “What we talk about (when we talk about cancer)” community site I led a group including a design agency and a web developer through multiple phases of conceptual sketches for IA, wireframing of design and layout, and functional mock-ups and staging server builds.

I managed an aggressive development timeline, which needed to match an upcoming nationwide marketing campaign across the Cancer Center.

A few months after the initial launch we began working on a phase II release, which allowed us to respond to the analytics we were collecting from our initial traffic.

For example, traffic appeared to drop-off somewhat in the early part of each monthly discussion cycle. This indicated to me that the site was perceived as having less content to engage with when only a few perspectives were visible on the homepage. As a result, I re-conceived the site’s overall architecture to work with our developer so we could create a new multi-channel format for the homepage.

WWTA phase I page in dev

WWTA Phase I in Development

 

Phase II Home Page

Phase II Carousel Development Option

Phase II Masonry Development

Phase II Masonry Development Option

WWTA final

WWTA Phase II

Content Creation (What we talk about)

A topic wordcloud, used to help review each topic for my review post

The content on the “What we talk about” community site that I developed works at the border of a traditional blog, with its content created by its contributors; an online magazine, with editorials created by me which draw conclusions from the discussions on each topic; and a forum site, open for all to comment, share and become full contributors themselves.

Creating a community space in which all these differing voices and differing levels of engagement can be accounted for began with me, as editor, establishing an initial list of topics — like “survivor”, “support” and “care” — and of the categories of community member “personas” we were seeking to engage — for example patients, physicians, caregivers, family members, administrators, etc.

I then produced a short list of initial contributors, to ensure the site launched with a balanced amount of content from each of these types of members. Prominent links to a “Participate” submission form then allowed more and more interested visitors to be added to this list (once each had agreed to a set of guidelines which ensured their posting would not violate patient privacy laws, etc).

After I have collected each set of contributions on a topic, and comments have come in from visitors to the site (each with my approval before going live, to avoid hacks or offensive posting), I create a post which collates and reflects on the ways in which the conversation has developed, to encourage further comments from visitors.

22 WWTA Survivor CODA

A review piece for the “Survivor” topic conversation

 

22 WWTA v2 everyday

The Everyday Amazing video channel

 

For the phase II release, a year after the initial launch, I added a new channel for video responses we collect from our community event van (part of the Everyday Amazing campaign). Our community now has over 50 regular contributors, and has had over 60,000 unique visitors.