Case Study: Next Generation Blend

Emotive transmedia learning 

LAS partnered with a large pharma company to create a next generation learning blend to support a new team in understanding and selling an innovative new drug.

The issue

We were approached by a large pharma company to help train a new team on an innovative new drug. Their philosophy has its foundations in a patient-centred approach, so it was vital to put the patient at the very heart of the learning. This was a massive opportunity for them, to be the first to market and also to make a life-changing difference to people suffering fromthis particular disease.

The Challenge

To create impactful, insightful training that was driven by empathy. Bringing a new team on-board by giving them an in-depth understanding of the drug and patient journey within a set timescale, so that the company could make the most of this opportunity. We wanted to introduce the idea of Next Generation Blends. An evolution of the traditional blend which:

The Solution

Their previous experience of elearning had been fairly traditional but they had a real appetite to do something different. Together, we decided on a transmedia approach – storytelling that bleeds into the real world using different channels. Transmedia was made popular for marketing purposes but also can be equally and very effectively, applied to learning. 

We used an actress to play a patient through 12 years of her condition. The patient’s story unfolds through ‘self-shot’ video diary entries,Facebook updates and SMS conversations over the course of the programme. The actress was aged with make-up and costume to make it really authentic. The narrative arc was designed so that the content maps to it logically. For example, after being married a while, the patient and her husband start to think about starting a family and she has to consider her choice of treatment during pregnancy. At this point on the learning journey, the learners explore the different types of treatment and the possible side effects and make recommendations about which might work for her.  

Living with the condition through the patient is highly emotive. The learners see her upset, happy, despairing, relieved. They share good news and bad with her. We know that we are more likely to pay attention to things that create an emotional response in us. Developing that connection through storytelling is a very powerful aid to memory. 

Alongside the story, they also access other learning assets along a learning pathway. These include videos. animations, documents,interactions, quizzes, Google Hangouts, research activities, offline activities and team activities. The programme runs over 5 days and the learning is drip fed as a campaign over this period, although they can go back and access the assets at any time as a reminder.

The Results

This way of blending is a step-change from the simple blends of the past which may have included an Information-based elearning course, a workshop to practice skills and maybe an implementation document to help put learning into practice. It plays on our natural human curiosity and emotions, mixing up the modes of delivery and making the learning into more of an adventure. This is what helps it to really stick.

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