LiveBetter + Ginger = 🙌
I spent an entire decade of my career developing advertising technology, first at Right Media and later at a startup I co-founded — AppNexus. After a decade, I realized I was burnt out when I started having night terrors. I decided enough was enough and went on a journey of self-discovery and healing. On this journey I discovered that the “secrets” to being happier and healthier aren’t actually so secret, but quite well known. The problem is… incorporating those behaviors and habits into daily life is really, really difficult.
It’s with that context that I started LiveBetter in 2015. The mission was simple: to use my background in adtech to influence behavior at scale, for the greater good. Specifically, I wanted to develop a technology that could help anyone with a smartphone incorporate the secrets of better mental health and well-being into their lives… to .. well… live better 🙌.
Over the past five years, LiveBetter has reached thousands of people around the world through our interactive, conversational app experience paired with engaging, evidence-based activities. Our research has proven that the use of LiveBetter can decrease stress, boost confidence and support people with challenges including anxiety, stress and self-confidence. And most importantly, unlike many other mental health technologies, our service is entirely free. Our customers range from average 20-somethings searching for purpose to unemployed single parents, and everyone in between.
I’ve written before about the fact that we can’t change the status quo if we stay within it. I continue to believe there is something fundamentally broken in our current mental healthcare system that simply leaves too many people behind. These people deserve to be happy and I know that we can help. The challenge is finding a way to reach these populations scalably and effectively. This is something we have struggled to do as a for-profit business. Those that need the most help tend to have the least resources to pay for it.
This gets me to today’s announcements! 🥳
First, we are selling the technology behind the LiveBetter app to Ginger, an on-demand mental health company. Ginger brings a fully integrated, behavioral health coaching, therapy and psychiatry system to nearly half a million people around the world through their work with employers and health plans. Our research has shown that pairing real people with our technology delivers the best results. And with this, we feel that bringing together our technology with Ginger’s existing platform and team of providers will help maximize the positive impact they are already having on their customer base.
Second, we are officially converting from a for-profit enterprise into a 501(c)3 recognized non-profit.You might be scratching your head and wondering, if we’re selling the technology, what’s the non-profit going to do? Well, Ginger lives by their values, and despite taking ownership (and continued development) of the technology platform, they are granting a perpetual license to the LiveBetter non-profit to continue operating the LiveBetter App… for free.
This means we get the best of both worlds. Not only will our technology now extend to Ginger’s growing customer base around the world, we can also focus our energy on what we are passionate about — figuring out a way to reach those that are being left behind. Thanks to Ginger’s support, LiveBetter can continue to offer its free services to those who can’t afford or do not have access to mental healthcare.
Perhaps the most appropriate way to end this post is with some gratitude. Did you know, research shows that expressing gratitude is proven to boost your happiness 😉? I’ll try to not make this sound like an Oscar speech but… thank you (in order of appearance) to Igor, Andrew, Laurent, Tom, Maya, Ismael, Christine, Jackie, Ona, Laura, Kevin, Kira, Erin, Alex and Laurel for all your hard work in making LiveBetter the product and company it is. All of you put a bit of your true selves into this project, and certainly more emotional energy than you needed to, and I am eternally grateful. Your faith in this project gives me the energy and confidence to continue with the next chapter. Thank you.