Authors: Luuk P.A. Simons; Wouter A.C. Van Den Heuvel; Catholijn M. Jonker
Addresses: Computer Science, Delft University of Technology, Van Mourik Broekmanweg 6, 2628 XE Delft, Netherlands ' Health Coach Program, Stevinweg 1, Delft, Netherlands ' Computer Science, Delft University of Technology, Van Mourik Broekmanweg 6, 2628 XE Delft, Netherlands
Abstract: WhatsApp was evaluated as group support tool for a high impact healthy lifestyle intervention, with 11 young professionals. Users valued the WhatsApp group as an attractive social support addition to the existing eTools and personal coaching. Based on preliminary results: 1) the WhatsApp group generated higher participation than most other social media; 2) deploying social media use motives; 3) possibly due to the relatively high 'presence' and 'engagement' attributes of WhatsApp; 4) contributing to healthy behaviours and health advocacy. Peer coaching was confirmed as promising. However, participation declined after the initial weeks. A design lesson was that users wanted more support for community forming. Several improvement suggestions are provided.
Keywords: eHealth; WhatsApp group; peer coaching; service design; healthy lifestyle; work site health; blended care; social media; social support; efficacy; motivation.
International Journal of Networking and Virtual Organisations, 2020 Vol.23 No.2, pp.112 - 127
Received: 17 Nov 2018
Accepted: 18 Feb 2019
Published online: 24 Apr 2020 *