Creating educational tools for orthopedic patients and their surgeons


Partner: Brainlab
Roles: Project Leadership, Research, Design, Production
Deliverables: Responsive Website, Patient Report, Printed Marketing Kit


In 2011, I was brought in to help surgical software company Brainlab with their brand strategy and digital marketing efforts. After a couple years working with the organization on various campaigns, I saw an opportunity for the company to expand their communications beyond the then current customer base of surgeons and hospitals — and begin outreach to patients. 


Once I developed a vision, strategy and plan to engage with patient communities, I pitched it to the CEO in Germany. As it turned out, this was something he had been wanting to do for many years. Together we developed a strategy for the company's first patient communications initiative, and I began a discovery phase with pre-surgical patients. We held a series of design studios with patients anticipating an upcoming hip or knee replacement surgery, for the purpose of understanding their unmet needs in terms of the information and support they were seeking or lacking. In a secondary phase of the design studios, we shared prototypes of an educational website and asked for feedback on the content as well as design.   


After the design studio research, I created patient journeys to help provide an "at-a-glance" takeaways for the marketing communications team, to help them conduct informed ideation sessions around content strategy, creation, and intervention points.


A major early outcome from the patient research was the creation of a responsive educational website at I translated the research data into actionable changes to the content as well as style guide, and saw the website through to development. Working with an international team, I developed and executed a social media strategy to support the ecosystem of, which continues to this day.


These patient engagement efforts drew interest from other teams at Brainlab and I had the opportunity to work with on a variety of patient outreach and education efforts. One of my favorites was working directly with the Germany-based orthopedic marketing manager to strategize and create new versions of the patient report following an image-guided hip or knee surgery. I worked with the team to understand what was / not working with the current reports and developed a new, friendlier visual language by redesigning the information architecture, data visualizations, style and graphics. 

Screen Shot 2018-01-23 at 10.51.46 PM.png

Another fruitful project was the development of a marketing kit for orthopedic surgeon customers who recently purchased Brainlab image-guided software. The kit was a value-add to the sale, as it enabled them with a helpful marketing guide in addition to patient-facing pamphlets to have in their waiting room or on-hand. I worked with the marketing team to develop the components of the kit — this included sourcing materials, developing visual style, and seeing the print pieces through to production.