The Challenge

The Service Innovation Team at Macmillan Cancer Support are tasked with finding new ways to meet the needs of people living with cancer (PLWC) through different service propositions. 

After interviewing a specific sub-segment of PLWC they identified a new need that wasn’t being served by their existing services - making peer to peer support more accessible and relevant, and to allow people to access advice and stories from others living with cancer without having to interact with them directly. 

They used this insight to develop an idea for a new digital platform that brings together advice and information for PLWC who are currently undergoing cancer treatment, provided by other PLWC. 

But it was just an idea on a piece of paper at that point, and before they invested heavily in launching it, first they wanted our help to build a low cost prototype and prove whether it really had potential. 

We were brought in to build it, and work directly with the target audience to test whether it appealed to them, identify any barriers to them using it and find new ways to fix them. 

The Solution

We designed, built and tested “Companion - Cancer stories and tips, from people who’ve been there too.” To get there, the project was split into 4 phases

  1. Website Design and Build - the build and design of a simple website, that can host several different types of content, including blogs, video, and quotes

  2. Testing Design & Set up -  to test multiple different assumptions over a short period. Within the website we swapped and change content to test appeal and engagement – such as the order of content, the presentation of content, and the logo / name 

  3. Qual and Quant testing - to maximise the use of the budget, we agreed to divide and conquer the testing between the Good Innovation and Macmillan teams. The Macmillan team led the quant, whilst we took the lead on the qual running 15 depth 1 hour interviews with people living with cancer across 3 different audience segments. 

  4. Tracking and Evaluation - translating everything we heard from the audience into a set of clear insights and recommendations on why and how to move forward. 

The Impact

The team at Macmillan are still reviewing the results from the testing before deciding whether to invest in iterating and launching Companion as a fully fledged service. Early signs are really positive and Companion is achieving better results compared to targets and existing benchmarks. 

"“We worked with Good Innovation to develop a new website to help people living with cancer to share their story and learn from other experiences. The Team were excellent at helping us to build out our concept, branding and customer journey, and created a fantastic working site. Ultimately, we needed to pivot our approach for various reasons, but Ryan was brilliant in allowing us to flex how we worked with Good Innovation, refocusing on delivering quality user experience research. They have helped us to flesh out our understanding of the appeal of the idea, its chances of success, and how we could better improve it to meet people’s needs – and created a fantastic video to summarise it all in the voices of our users. This has helped us as we further explore how this service could evolve in the future.”"

Tara Protheroe

Innovation Specialist