Top 10 Reasons Your Brand Needs a Health Hackathon

By | 2016-11-04T16:56:51+00:00 May 5, 2016|Best Practices, Innovation, Viewpoints|

Are you looking for new ideas for your brand? Need to amp up the authenticity in your communications? Open to connecting with your customer communities like never before? Well todays your lucky day. We’ve got a list of the top reasons your brand needs a health hackathon!

At SXSW, JUICE Pharma partnered with MIT Hacking Medicine, Abelson Taylor, and HCB Health to create a highly inspirational health hackathon called The HackMed Health House, an effort to put a diverse group of brilliant minds together to tackle the challenges of chronic disease.

How can a bunch of programmers locked in a room solve such wide-reaching issues? Let’s find out.

1. Hackathons arent just for coders

When we talk about health hackathons, we’re not talking about a roomful of programmers hacking away on code for hours on end. Our HackMed Health House was broken up into a series of sessions over 3 days and included designers, entrepreneurs, healthcare professionals, and patients. No one did any coding. We were hacking ideas, discovering challenges, and inventing solutions.

2. Your brand needs new ways to engage

Health hackathons offer the wisdom of a crowd. Often a highly intelligent, creative, and inspired crowd, gathered together for a common cause. Add in key stakeholders like patients and HCP KOLs and youll get ideas beyond anything possible in a standard conference room brainstorm.

3. You like to save money and time

Although there can be up-front costs to sponsoring or running a health hackathon, they can’t compare to the amount of money and time some companies will spend trying to discover innovative approaches in isolation. Hackathons offer a concentrated burst of innovation, enthusiasm, and creativity.

4. Networking helps everyone

Did we mention the wonderful mix of folks we had in attendance at the HackMed Health House? I met someone from the CDC who was over the moon collaborating with the developers and docs at his table. One of the prizewinning ideas came from a team that met just that day and hoped to continue their idea on into the future. Companies are using hackathons to replace career fairs.

5. Theres no substitute for passion

One thing that’s great about health hackathons is that there are hundreds of things that are great about health hackathons. Every participant comes with their own passion and applies it to the shared task at hand. It’s like calling in the All-Star team to take on your customers healthcare challenge.

6. Connecting stakeholders amps up authenticity

Whatever tactics, apps, promotions, or messages come out of a health hackathon (and any one of those and many more ideas could come out of a health hackathon) it will come from the insights gleaned from all those varied and collected passions and inspired minds working together. Hard to beat.

7. Collaborating spreads your name

Involving patient advocates and HCP KOLs in the pursuit of answers to health challenges at health hackathons offers an opportunity for your brand to be a part of the healthcare conversations already happening among the followers of those thought leaders.

8. Building trust with the community = priceless

In todays world of mistrust and fear in healthcare, health hackathons offer an excellent opportunity to act with transparency in a public forum and do the real work of working with communities to come up with solutions in collaboration.

9. Your tactics get a huge head start

Health hackathons are all about that concentration of effort to produce actionable ideas. That focus and concentration gets actionable ideas on the table ready to test, develop, and deploy.

10. Its easy to get involved

From national events like South by Southwest, to local patient or HCP conventions, there are opportunities to create or sponsor health hackathons that focus on solving challenges specific to your customer base.

Wrapping up
Need any more convincing? Have questions? Just want to hear more about health hackathons or the SXSW HackMed Health House? Give us a call or send us a message.

We look forward to hacking with you soon.

About the Author:

Alec Pollak
VP, Director of User Experience and Content Marketing

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