The Goal: An Engaging Virtual Experience

The Objective
Natera is a global leader in cell-free DNA testing. Their mission is to change the landscape of disease management worldwide with a focus on delivering patient outcomes in prenatal care, oncology, and transplant medicine. In June of 2020, the brand holds its first annual Organ Health Patient Town Hall — virtually. The goal of the Natera Virtual Town Hall, “Navigating the COVID Crisis & Reopening as a Transplant Patient,” is to deliver an engaging virtual experience that far exceeds a basic webinar platform.

The Natera Virtual Town Hall brings together transplant patients, patient advocacy groups, organ matching organizations, and transplant societies in real time. The technology platform fully integrates registration, speaker presentations, videos, and attendee networking. The end result is a cohesive, compelling, virtual experience.

For two hours, town hall attendees, including keynote speaker George Lopez, engage with each other in an open chat forum, with transplant patients and health professionals sharing experiences, advice and more. As a kidney transplant recipient himself, Lopez is a natural choice to be the event’s keynote speaker. In addition to raising awareness about kidney health, Lopez continues his advocacy efforts through the George Lopez Foundation, which is dedicated to improving the lives of people affected by kidney disease.

The Design
The Natera Virtual Town Hall runs exclusively on the Sparks Digital Platform as a custom branded website. This comprehensive virtual platform boasts several high-end features that streamline the event process including: registration, lead capture, content live stream, live group chat, meeting scheduler, and more. The site’s responsive design is suitable for devices of all types. The Natera brand look and feel of the experience creates a warm, familiar environment for the town hall.

The Natera Virtual Town Hall puts the patient first and places community and engagement at the forefront of the design. Throughout the digital experience, attendees engage in meaningful interactions with each other through a live mass chat that allows viewers to engage directly with Lopez as well as representatives from various kidney advocacy groups. To foster a sense of community and inclusivity, Sparks opens up the group chat prior to the event allowing viewers to share their stories, express their excitement and connect.

The digital platform provides Natera with promotional assets for use across multiple marketing channels such as social media and email campaigns. The brand uses the platform for future events including on-demand viewing of the Organ Health Virtual Patient Town Hall.

The creation of the Natera Virtual Town Hall Perfectly underscores its mission to improve disease management on a global scale, particularly through the use of technology. In bringing transplant patients, healthcare professionals and advocacy organizations together virtually in real time, Natera bridges information and knowledge gaps — more important now than ever in the wake of a global pandemic.

A Breakdown of the Virtual Town Hall Design

The Pre-Event Site
The Natera Virtual Town Hall pre-event website is easy to navigate, with a registration form link in the site header that triggers a pop-up that provides a simple, quick sign up. The site accommodates an event agenda with times and details, event speaker bios, information on partnership organizations and their leadership bios. The Resources section is where to find downloadable PDFs and videos. The pre-event experience is user-friendly and designed to give attendees all the details they need to know about the live event as well as communicate what Natera is doing to help the kidney transplant patient community.

The Live Event Site
On the day of the Virtual Town Hall, registered attendees join the live event via the main website header. Similar to the pre-event website, the live event page provides the agenda, speaker and partner information and resources. Users watch the live stream and live chat with other attendees as a Natera moderator monitors the conversations.

Post-Event Site
A “Thank You For Joining Us” message takes over the site header as a banner alerts attendees of upcoming session recordings. The site includes a post-event meeting scheduler for attendees to follow-up with each other. When ready, the virtual town hall recording flanks a photo of the keynote speaker, George Lopez. Speaker and partner information as well as resources continue to be available.

Each iteration of the website is warm, inviting and intuitive. The user friendly experience is easy to navigate and is visually appealing and fun.

Innovating the User Experience
One of the smartest user experiences of the Natera Virtual Town Hall is safely connecting transplant patients with healthcare KOLs and fellow patients in a trusted digital environment. In the open chat forum, transplant patients and health professionals share experiences, advice and reactions in real time. Moderators with custom usernames from four advocacy organizations highlight reputable statements and are a trusted source of information.

The platform, and the town hall itself, is built to be viewer-agnostic — Natera engages with both patients and providers and needs to create a digital space that speaks to the needs and interests of both groups. Sparks works with Natera to gather resources, finesse language, and ensure that both patients and providers find the tools they need.

The Results
The first annual Natera Organ Health Virtual Patient Town Hall is a success! 220 attendees come together to engage in one-of-a-kind, meaningful transplant care conversations. The custom town hall, powered by Sparks Digital Platform, is an informative and immersive virtual experience. Its design reflects Natera’s brand personality as well as its mission to develop life-changing solutions for the transplant patient community.

  • Virtual town hall powered by Sparks Digital Platform
  • Custom branded site design
  • Features keynote speaker, George Lopez
  • Attendees include transplant patients, patient advocacy groups, organ matching organizations, and transplant societies
  • Hosts live stream speaker presentations and viewers for 2 hours of content
  • Pre, live and post event states for registration, live stream and on-demand access



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