SpinalHub was an initiative by the Royal Talbot Rehabilitation Centre to provide consumer-friendly content for people with spinal injuries.

Briarbird saw the opportunity to use online video to expand SpinalHub’s reach and impact. Our proposal and proposed approached ticked all the right boxes with the Austin Health and TAC, who were the major sponsors of SpinalHub.

Videos helped sell the message

One of the key messages of SpinalHub is to focus on what people with spinal injuries can achieve, rather than what they can’t, and who better to talk about this than the people who have a spinal injury themselves. They are the experts at the tips and tricks life of life in a wheelchair.

Briarbird developed an online video strategy called SpinalHub TV. We workshopped with staff to understand the needs and content areas, then piloted four initial videos. We then went on to implement the strategy.

Personal stories, simply told

We focused on personal stories, with people in wheelchairs demonstrating life skills. We went deliberately simple; most shoots involved only the camera operator who also recorded sound. This made us mobile and flexible. We sat at the same level as our subjects and asked them to simply explain, and show, a skill they used. These skills ranged from putting on shoes, cooking, car transfers, to playing tennis and wheelchair rugby.

We also included some experts suggesting tips about how to deal with common spinal injury issues such as hypersensitivity, skin care and preparing for overseas travel.

Great results

Briarbird delivered 60 video clips and launched the SpinalHubTV YouTube channel. To date the top 10 videos have had over 150,000 views.

SpinalHub won the Quality Development Presentation prize at the annual ANZSCoS (Australia and New Zealand Spinal Cord Society) scientific meeting (2011).