Our client was looking to better understand what the key unmet needs patients, caregivers, and HCPs face when living and caring for a mental health condition, and what drives people to seek treatment. They hypothesized that people’s lack of engagement with their condition led to low levels of engagement with treatment.
We know that unlike conditions that can be more clearly defined (such as kidney disease), with this condition people find themselves in an in-between and undefined space: they are neither sick nor healthy. The typical labels of “patient” and “caregiver” no longer resonate. Understanding how people make sense of their own “condition” (as opposed to assuming they see it as a concrete disease or see themselves as a patient) is key to uncovering opportunities for engagement and intervention that truly resonate with the people who are living with this condition.
We started with a Stakeholder Kickoff to define the challenge and map human-centric hypotheses.
Conducting ethnographic interviews allowed us to immerse ourselves in people’s lives and understand their deepest unmet needs: immersions in the homes of people living with the condition and their loved ones, in the offices and homes of physicians, and virtual ethnographies with pharmacists, payers, and nurses.
By mapping the journey we were able to bring the experience to life, showcasing the role of different actors, and key moments of intervention that the brand can leverage.
The development of personas highlighted the different experiences with the condition and associated strategic areas of opportunity.
Leading a strategic ideation session helped the team define key areas of engagement, that relate back to people’s deeper emotional, social, and clinical unmet needs.
Finally, an ethnographic video drove home the key insights and opportunities and became a tool for the organization to drive wider empathy for the experience of the people behind the illness.
Deep immersion in the lives of people allowed us to reframe the human problem - people do not push off treatment because of lack of engagement with their condition.
The impact of this condition is often life-altering. How people make sense of their condition defines how they treat it, and many people see this condition as being a symptom of a different underlying illness. As such, treatment was only sought when the underlying disease was addressed or diagnosed by a physician.