AlzLive is the premier online resource for caregivers of people suffering with Alzheimer’s disease and dementia. As such, the emphasis was on creating an application that felt current, informative, and friendly.

The AlzLive project build was extensive, and integrated various technologies to deliver an application that features original and curated content. The site was built around a content management system that was designed to be user friendly for its multiple administrators, copywriters and editors. It includes a full-featured user login system as well as user experience customizations that allow individuals to modify various aspects of the content.

Key Points

Strategy

The strategy behind the application was to bring together everything related to Alzheimer’s disease and dementia into one place. We were tasked with bringing as much as we could into one platform. No small feat. This meant we needed to map out a systematic approach to the application and incorporate all disciplines of the digital process together, from content curation and creation, to design, to marketing and advertising.

Additionally, we provided guidance for the business model of AlzLive to structure the business to maintain the digital resource’s effectiveness. We helped form the monetization strategy, cultivate strategic partnerships, and manage the company’s resources.

Planning

When planning an application of this size and detail, we looked at various inspirational sites, magazines, and publishers. Considerations were made regarding content, rich media, and interactivity, as well as business management, process, and accessibility. We worked closely with AlzLive’s founder to research content categories, create sitemaps and wireframes, and compile detailed composites; which included mapping responsive solutions for monitors, tablets, and phones to ensure the application would be visible across all devices and browsers.

Content

Content for AlzLive is created continuously by its staff writers and editors, as well as curated from additional resources. To produce the curated content, both the author and the source needed to be given credit for articles that were referenced; so we built a mechanism to allow for attribution where necessary. Along with the author and source references, the AlzLive content editors also have the ability to create connected content linked together by category, tag, publication, series, country, and status. Each post can also contain various rich media layout modules such as callouts, block quotes, inserted books, and polls.

Design

The design and branding of the site was built through frequent client consultations and collaboration. It integrates a front-end user authentication flow as well as a dashboard, and a carefully mapped user interface strategy. The design was conceptualized with community interaction in mind, and supplements the company’s social media channels. Additional third-party services such as Google Analytics, MailChimp, AddThisEvent, and Amazon products were also integrated to automate campaigns and tracking. AlzLive is built on a responsive framework, allowing the site to be viewed seamlessly on all modern devices and browsers. The design of this application is heavily influenced by magazines and magazine culture. The imagery is vibrant, to match the many bright colours within the brand’s palette. This was a conscious decision; and helps with distinguishing navigation from content.

The navigation is extensive yet simple. Drop-down lists group categories on desktop as well as mobile, and sleek touch and hover interactions add emphasis and excitement. Each post contains breadcrumb navigation to help users stay oriented if entering directly from social media or other external sites.

We chose typography on the site that merges bold and impactful headings with clean and modern body copy. This was chosen to help visually distinguish content sections and ideas, and establish concise page hierarchy.

Development

The development of this application was done in phases to ensure that its complex deliverables were completed in a timely and agile fashion. Within each page, interactive modules are combined to create flexible and unique layouts to best represent the content being published.

Professional coding standards, accessibility requirements, and page speed were key considerations during this process. This site was built using modern development build and deployment tools.

Analytics, Reporting, & Integrations

AlzLive features a revenue model based on Google Advertising, as well as custom in-house advertising. Ads are set globally across the site but can then be re-defined based on category, page, post, or series. Custom ads can be set to override Google Ads if desired. This allows for ultimate flexibility with regard to placement, and allows for specific posts or categories to be featured by a specific advertiser. It also means that the management team needs to be able to track and report on a variety of data and data segmentation. Using Google Analytics page and campaign tracking, combined with sharing integration and metrics, AlzLive always has a detailed breakdown of its traffic and monetary value of its marketing efforts.