Anticoagulants are a tough sell. They don’t make you feel ‘better’. In fact, the only thing you might notice is how a cut will bleed a little longer than before. Whatever way you look at it, blood thinners aren’t a thing people relish taking. But when it comes to Atrial Fibrillation, they’re all that’s stopping you from deep vein thrombosis,a stroke, or worse.
So what Pfizer needed from us was a way to help people understand just how important this medication is and why you need to continue taking it even if you feel fine.
The intricacies of anticoagulants and how they bind to cells in the left atrial chamber of the heart are hard to explain. And what people can’t visualise and understand, they ignore. So short of showing how AF and anticoagulants work at a cellular level, it was always going to remain an abstract concept to people. But this gave us an idea.
What if we could take people on a journey inside their own hearts to see what AF really means? If you can see first-hand the implications of a condition like Atrial Fibrillation, and how anticoagulants prevent its effects, you’ll understand why it’s so important. And if we make the experience an entertaining one, people will learn this by proxy.
Our solution was to create a 360° virtual reality experience that takes you on a journey into your heart. We called it ATRIA. And we chose to tell this story through CG, and developed a character to guide you through it. Because even though the subject matter might be serious, the tone we used didn’t have to be. It could feel a bit like a Pixar short in 360°.
Enter HARV: your Holographic Alternate Reality Videogram. A robot with impeccable bedside manners, he
transforms the dry, impenetrable lesson into an entertaining experience.
Before ATRIA, the task was simply to educate HCPs on how to better explain anticoagulants and their role in treating AF. But by creating ATRIA as a virtual reality short with a brand, a character and a story above and beyond the educational piece, we’ve created an experience that entertains first, educates second. Which means that what began as a B2B challenge was transformed into a consumer facing platform to promote and share across Pfizer’s social channels too.
As a result, ATRIA – an idea conceived, developed and executed right here in Ireland – is soon to be adapted, translated and localised to Pfizer’s markets across Europe and the US. The ambition is that HARV becomes an IP Vocal and Pfizer will continue to use as the bridge between the intricacies of modern medicine and the patients who take them.