When someone asks how you’re feeling, the typical response is somewhere along the lines of, ‘Oh, fine.’ Not convinced this was true, pharmaceutical company Help Remedies decided to dig a bit further and find out how people were really feeling.
Tracking weekly state-level sales data for eight of their over-the counter-products (ranging from anti-nausea to blister remedies), Help created the site ‘What’s Wrong, U.S.?’ that shows the most common ailment affecting a state’s population.
The site shows a color-coded, interactive map of the United States; each state’s color matches the Help Remedy with the highest sales during the previous week. When users scroll over a state, they see the breakdown of sales for all eight Help Remedy products and how product sales in that state compare to the national average. Users can click on each state to see an even narrower geographic breakdown of Help Remedies sales, watch videos from regional experts explaining why a state might be experiencing a particular ailment, and are even empowered to make suggestions themselves about why a state has an ailment and how to solve the problem.
For example, right now South Carolina is light blue, meaning the ‘help I have a blister‘ product has been the most popular Help product. When a user hovers over the state, they can see that people in S.C. are much more likely than the national average to have blisters, and if they click on the state, they’ll notice that people in S.C. living in the ‘low country’ region are more likely to have blisters than those who live in the ‘upstate’ region.
While Help Remedies is opening up their sales data to give people knowledge about common ailments, they more importantly want to use the data to see how they can better help people. Help Co-Founder and Creative Director Nathan Frank on creating ‘What’s Wrong, U.S.?:’
The anomalies are what we are looking for because that’s where we can help. Say there’s a massive spike in headaches in Duluth. We can send a team to figure out what’s causing the problem. If there’s a gaudily colored building on Main Street that everybody complains about, we can repaint the building. People might ask, isn’t that counter productive? Don’t you want to sell more help I have a headache?’ We want to help people. If we can do that without drugs, all the better.
So what’s wrong, PSFK readers?