To make the best new apps for cancer care, we want to get feedback and insight from patients and doctors who want to give or get better cancer care. Makes sense right? Ask your customers what ideas and features they like best and you will get a better product. But how do we connect innovators to the crowd that care most about their creations? We have found that a crowdfunding project is a very effective way to get opinions, feedback, adoption, and awareness for a new idea. A great crowdfunding project is a co-creation engine. I should know, I built MedStartr as a co-creative process, first with the H2NYC community and presently with innovators and leaders around the world.

This is why the National Cancer Institute and the Office of the National Coordinator for Health IT have asked us if we can list the finalists in their Crowds Care 4 Cancer Challenge and help get as many people to engage in the co-design the solutions. So the finalists have loaded up their projects and they are doing great, getting lots of attention, feedback, customers, and partnerships – in addition to raising significant funding. They are off to a great start, but they could really use your help in reaching the entire Crowd that Cares, the over 14 Million cancer Survivors, Care Team, and Oncologists in the US. One of the key elements of crowdfunding is that it serves as a place where everyone can meet and DO SOMETHING about a problem. In phase 1 of the Crowds Care for Cancer challenge, we sought innovators and received a record number of submissions, thanks to the help of Livestrong, Health 2.0, ACS, Stupid Cancer, Cancer 101, Health 2.0 NYC, HIBC.tv, Sperling Greene, and many others. Now in phase 2 we are ask for your help in spreading the word through newsletters, tweets, and social shares.

To make this easy, we created what we call the “PromoPack.” Included in the PromoPack are a number of items that we ask that you do. All can be modified to suit your audience, these are only suggestions. Once again, thank you for your assistance in the next three weeks while Phase 2 continues (until July 5th) and the final grand prize winner is determined. See below for our top ten items too!

Try to do one or two of these or even make it your daily vitamin and do one a day. Thank You!

Include something like this in your Newsletter (please!)
“The US Government is sponsoring a contest to help develop the best new way for cancer survivors to stay connected to their care team and stay cancer free. Three finalists have been selected and they want your feedback, votes, and support. The Grand prize is $25,000 and your vote counts so find, feedback, and fund the finalists at www.MedStartr.com/CrowdsCare.”

Thank a Judge
We have amazing judges for this challenge. Here are a few you could thank and a typical tweet:

“Thank you for judging the Crowds Care 4 Cancer Challenge @Naveen101 of @LIVESTRONG The Finals are On! www.medstartr.com/crowdscare #CC4C13”

Thank all the Judges on twitter:
@chemosabe1 (Richard Just, MD)
@StupidCancerCEO (Matt Zachary)
@CasualCorp (Thor Ernstson)
@s57BenChodor (Ben Chodor)
@Cancer101 #S4PM (Sarah Krug)
@drseisenberg (Steven Eisenberg, DO)
@kimwhit (Kim Whittemore)

Join us in our many Online places and share the care
Here are all the links and info you need.
• The Link: www.medstartr.com/CrowdsCare
• The Hashtag: #CC4C13
• Our Weekly Tweetchat: Tuesdays at Ten PM EST on #HCCF
• MedStartr’s Facebook page: www.facebook.com/medstartr

10 more ways you can help make the Crowds Care for Cancer Challenge be all it can be:

1. Join the Crowd: Set up your TweetDeck or go to Hootsuite.com and follow #CC4C13, retweet or talk about what interests you. You can also just click here and get engaged in the conversation about cancer survivor care.

2. Tune In! Listen or call in to the Stupid Cancer Radio Show with Alex Fair, Jean Luc Neptune from Health 2.0 and Carly Parry. Here is a tweet about it to make it easy to share: “Join @alexbfair @jeanlucneptune and @TheNCI’s Carly Parry on next Mon’s (6/17) @StupidCancer Show LIVE@8pm/ET stpdcn.cr/16VwhP8 @health2con @MedStartr #CC4C13
Or the facebook or linkedin version:
“Join Alex Fair, Jean Luc Neptune, and Carly Parry from MedStartr, Health 2.0 and The National Cancer Institute on next Monday’s (6/17) StupidCancer Show LIVE@ 8pm/ET stpdcn.cr/16VwhP8”

We will also be on mHealthzone and perhaps NPR, so stay tuned for more dates there.

3. Cross the Streams: Keep using the Twitter Hashtag #CC4C13 on all tweets and join the conversation. Cross over into #HIT and #HCSM #BCSM liberally by tacking them on where relevant. Don’t do it too much or you will be what they call a “Hashtag Spammer” and we wouldn’t want that!

4. Get Chatty: Join us for the Weekly Tweetchat: Tuesdays at Ten PM EST on #HCCF The Finalists will be there as special guests. Also consider joining the other Tweetchats that we will participate in like #BCSM on Mondays at 9 EST. Watch #CC4C13 for updates

5. Facebook it: Believe it or not, facebook is our #2 source of traffic, so please use this powerfull message spreading tool to engage your crowd that cares. Please put a link on your company or group page or into your general stream. Paste in the main link and a description of what to do. Here is an example:
““I am helping spread the word for the Crowds Care 4 Cancer Challenge. In this first ever Crowdsourcing / Crowdfunding contest, the US Government has asked the public which ideas they like best and asked people for their feedback on the designs and utility of each tool. The goal is to improve care for cancer survivors (estimated at 14 million and growing). If you know, love, are, or support a cancer survivor, we would love if you would share this with them and ask them to please check out and provide feedback for their favorite new idea to improve cancer survivor care. Thank You! See the finalists at http://medstartr.com/CrowdsCare

6. Press Buttons – Use the Sharing Buttons: Under each project are social media sharing links, use them all! We count this as a “vote” in our data too!

7. Get Embedded: Embed the projects, or just your favorite, on your blog. Instructions here: http://about.medstartr.com/medstartr-school-how-to-drive-everyone-to-your/

8. Good Ol’ Email: Spam for a good cause! Consider sharing among your personal Crowd that Cares. These are the people that you think will care about this. This shouldn’t be your entire address list and we don’t really consider this to be spam if done well. Here is sample text, edit to make it your own. Done right, it adds a great viral component:

“Dear ,
There is a project I am helping out with that is pretty amazing, and I think you will agree. There are over 14 million cancer survivors in America today, and this is a great testament to the advances in cancer care. Unfortunately, while they may be cancer free or in remission, survivors still face significant challenges in their daily life dealing with a fragmented healthcare system and the aftermath of treatment. Returning to normal life, choosing the right on-going treatment options, and staying connected with their care team is all difficult. So the US Government, specifically the National Cancer Institute and the Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology, teamed up to create an innovation challenge to encourage people to come up with new ideas to solve this problem. This approach, called Crowdsourcing worked fantastically and patients, care givers, engineers, scientists, and doctors, all of whom understood the problem and were passionate about solving it, stepped up and designed some great solutions for survivors. Three finalists were selected by an all-star panel of cancer survivors, oncologists, designers, and thought leaders in the field. Now the 3 finalists are being Crowdfunded on the MedStartr healthcare crowdfunding site. Please take a moment and help spread the word about these new ideas. We are asking for your feedback, sharing, and, if you are inspired, support for these great new ideas in cancer care. I am sending this to you because I consider you part of my “Crowd that Cares” about improving healthcare and specifically for cancer care. The campaigners have until July 5th to receive and respond to feedback from the crowd. Their final submissions to the challenge will be judged on how well they incorporate this feedback in a process called “co-design.” Please weigh in on these tools by commenting on the campaign or privately emailing the innovators. Critiques and praise are equally welcome! See the Finalists here and pass on the message to your Crowd that Cares about cancer. http://medstartr.com/CrowdsCare
Thank you for your support in this and all our other efforts!

9. Tweet your people well: No one wants to be bored or marketed to, so tweet with tyle! Tweet out a few of these beauties or make up some of your own:
a. Know a cancer survivor? Support the solutions they need http://bit.ly/CC4C13 #cc4c13
b. Cast your Vote by Sharing via Social Media your favorite Finalist in The Crowds Care 4 Cancer Challenge • Medstartr http://bit.ly/CC4C13 #CC4C13
c. See the Finalists in the Crowds Care For Cancer Challenge – Help design the future of cancer survivor care http://medstartr.com/CrowdsCare #CC4C13
d. Mom, dad, brother, sister, friend: Cancer Survivor –Crowds Care 4 Cancer http://bit.ly/CC4C13 #cc4c13
e. Support Cancer Survivors by giving feedback to 3 innovative #healthIT tools! http://bit.ly/CC4C13 #cc4c13
f. Supporting cancer survivors: Is there an app for that? Crowds Care for Cancer Challenge: http://bit.ly/CC4C13 #cc4c13
g. Solutions to Stay Connected to your care team AFTER you make it past cancer http://bit.ly/CC4C13 #cc4c13
h. Thank you @TheNCI and @ONC_HealthIT for inspiring and supporting 14 million Cancer Survivors. See the #CC4C13 Finalists here and vote for your favorite: http://bit.ly/CC4C13
i. For the Cancer Survivors in your life – Please tell us what you think of the #cc4c13 finalists and spread the word http://bit.ly/CC4C13
j. Cancer Sucks, but staying connected to your care team afterward will suck less thanks to the CrowdsCare4CancerChallenge – vote on the best: http://bit.ly/CC4C13 #cc4c13
k. I am part of the #CrowdThatCares, please join me in co-designing Cancer Survivor Solutions at http://bit.ly/CC4C13 #CC4C13
l. Please join the #CrowdThatCares, review, vote on, share, and support #Cancer Survivor Solutions at http://bit.ly/CC4C13 #CC4C13
m. …make up your own or just pull on from the #CC4C13 stream to retweet, reply, and mention!

10. Talk Amongst Yourselves: Start a Discussion on Reddit or LinkedIn in relevant groups (i.e. healthcare related, cancer related, health communication, informatics, public health, and research). Here are some topics and don’t forget the link http://www.medstartr.com/CrowdsCare:
a. How can health IT help improve cancer survivors’ quality of life?
b. How can health informatics improve health care for cancer survivors?
c. 14 million cancer survivors (and rising). Survivor needs are real and solutions from innovators, researchers, and developers can help!
d. What can developers, researchers, and innovators do to improve the lives of cancer survivors?
e. Can Crowdfunding replace the growing funding gap in health and medical innovation? The Crowds Care 4 Cancer Challenge combines a government grant challenge with a Crowdfunding program for cancer survivors.

Thank you for your assistance in spreading the word about this challenge. It is fantastic to work with such an all-star team and we are humbled by what the applicants created and what you have helped ONC and NCI do. Already the finalists have earned over $6,000 more in crowdfunding from the crowd and garnered three more partnerships plus 24 news stories we are aware of. We want to reach every cancer survivor though and to do so we need your help. We can do this together! If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to call.

Warm Regards,
Alex Fair
Chief Crowdologist. | MedStartr, Inc. | 530.MED.STARtr