formative + generative + evaluative research + strategy
Activities were conducted in 2016/2017 to gain a stronger understanding of targeted audiences, their current understanding of the topic, and validate the effort to establish a positioning statement.
UX Research Lead
Empower this marketing team with an understanding of how Oncologists think, how much they understand, their attitudes and expectations, as well as their gaps in knowledge around this new perspective and approach to fighting Cancer.
Results will be used by a third-party agency in the redesign the .Com as well as this marketing team’s other offline and online work.
Validate the direction of a new positioning statement.
I was originally asked what approach I would take to answer specific research questions to inform the redesign of the .Com and how to validate positioning statements. However, I recommended a more holistic approach that would inform much more to ensure the team is working consistently across projects and media with a cohesive understanding of who they are targeting and how to target.
The Session + Activities
I recommended activities that would reveal insights into customer/user groups, their needs, their relevant tasks, and validate the direction of positioning statements while eliciting feedback to finalize them. My recommendations included an open card sort to explore Oncologists’ mental models and perspective of Cancer Immunotherapy to inform information architecture and navigation schema with an emphasis on qualitative data; an interview to understand more about who they are; a validation activity that would reveal the most relevant direction for the positioning statement and elicit insights into how to inform revisions and ensure success with the broad audience; and a survey with basic demographic and psychographic insights to inform planning and drive a more in-depth insights with each of the activities. 
We agreed on a formal approach to ensure the strength of the data, and I planned for 1 hour per activity. However, somewhere the communication broke down and only 1 hour for all activities was budgeted. [gulp]
The recruitment profile was high-level and based on the client’s knowledge. It included representation of the type of location (urban, suburban, rural), type of Oncologist (academic, community), and years of experience. Recruitment was handled through a firm specializing in doctors.
It was recommended that a look at Oncologists across the industry to compare to this representation to understand the strength of representation.
One hour sessions
The sessions were conducted remotely via Webex and recorded for further analysis and sharing with the client. I choreographed a tight session script. The card sort used a remote tool that did not include analysis features. The validation of positioning statements was conducted harnessing Google Docs to allow participants to view and edit.
The sessions were very insightful and fruitful. The client listened in on a few sessions. The sessions consistently revealed attitudes (unelicited) about pharma companies and the Oncologists’ levels of distrust due to the conflict of interest (profit) – an introduction of bias. The client was getting discouraged by the comments. I explored this bias as I knew I would need to empower the client to understand it and work with it.  It was clear that certain Oncologists would not listen to anyone from the pharmaceutical industry while others were open to various roles – but the client did not hear enough sessions to hear the various perspectives. I knew I had to address the clients’ concerns and fears, and show how those insights vary – and how they were useful. 
The insights were holistic revealing how to reach the targeted audience from attitude, knowledge, and vehicle of communication. Personas were harnessed to not only communicate the groups but also communicate the variation of results to empower the team in their .Com redesign, designing marketing communications, and conference experiences.

Positioning Statement Validation
The validation activity revealed a need for a balanced, humble perspective with insights into terminology that would shut down the target audience.
The first positioning statement was far off and elicited a consistent reaction – dry and uninterested.​​​​​​​
The different activities revealed expectations and perspectives of a few topics that were consistently brought up – unelicited.
The variations of unexpected perspectives were presented using personas to explain why the variations exist and how to leverage this insight.
I was aware that I would present to a small group, and then the report would be passed to other groups. I presented the results to the client and empowered them to understand the approach, results, and the usefulness and usability of the artifacts. I was careful to document the activities and approach to communicate the strength of the data.
Report of Findings
Validation Results
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