Choosing the right engagement platform can be tough. Why choose ExtendMed over Within3?

ExtendMed partners with hundreds of pharmaceutical, biotech and healthcare communications companies to more efficiently engage key stakeholders in advisory boards, interactive training and speaker programs. Our program outcomes go on to influence key business decisions our clients make every day.

We know we’re not the only platform and service provider with solutions in this space and deciding which solution is best for your organization can be challenging. To make an informed decision, you need a clear understanding of your options and the differences between them.

So first, we’d like to acknowledge the team at Within3, a primary competing platform. They’ve built a great tool to help the biggest companies in pharma focus on global asynchronous engagement. If you’re here to understand the difference between ExtendMed and Within3, or are looking for an alternative, you’re in the right place.

3 key differences at a glance

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Customizability and Flexibility

ExtendMed offers highly customizable and flexible solutions tailored to small to mid-size life sciences companies' unique needs, unlike Within3, which focuses on serving larger corporations with a standard SaaS model. ExtendMed’s platform supports both synchronous (real-time) and asynchronous (time-shifted) engagements, providing a more adaptable solution for diverse communication strategies.

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White Glove Service and Support

ExtendMed provides personalized service, assigning dedicated program managers to each client. This ensures expert, hands-on guidance, enhancing the effectiveness of medical communications and engagements, contrasting with Within3's more generic, hands-off service approach. Teams choose us when they need both a platform and a strategic partner.

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Contract Flexibility

ExtendMed offers more flexible contract terms, including the option to start with short-term pilot projects, which benefits companies preferring to evaluate the platform's effectiveness without long-term commitments. This flexibility is ideal for companies needing adaptable contracting options to align with their project timelines and budget constraints, unlike Within3’s typical year-long-minimum agreements.

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What are the differences between ExtendMed and Within3?

Of course, there are feature and product differences between the companies, which we’ll get to in a moment. But at its core, ExtendMed was built exclusively for small to mid-size pharma, medical device, biotech and similar life science companies rather than the industry’s largest players.

This was accomplished with the unique knowledge and experience of healthcare education expert Amy Ravi, who’s spent over 20 years simplifying medical education and training solutions for medical communications agencies, medical associations and pharmaceutical companies.

If you’re a small to mid-size company, know that we understand firsthand just how challenging it is to leverage a small team with limited resources to engage with KOLs and thought leaders, convene advisory boards, build medical education programs, develop speaker bureaus and all the rest.

That’s why we’re able to provide a platform—and support it with expert guidance—that gives medical affairs and commercial teams, as well as the communication agencies they work with, the power to think globally and act locally, selecting the most relevant corporate assets and translating them to address local needs through an engagement platform that maximizes the frequency and value of your interactions at a third of the cost of traditional approaches.

While Within3 is focused on scaling its platform as a traditional Software as a Service (SaaS) product—where teams sign up to use the platform as built—our focus is on giving teams a more customizable, flexible platform wrapped in expert service as an extension of your team. We partner with our clients to help them set up and use our platform to the fullest.

The top four reasons companies choose ExtendMed over other platforms

1. We’re smaller, and focused on custom, personalized service rather than scaling a technology platform.

When you choose us, you get more than software. At ExtendMed, we assign senior-level healthcare technology experts to your account who work with you to customize and personalize our system to meet your specific needs, often resulting in faster reaction times. Moreover, we provide white glove service in interacting with your key stakeholders—whether we’re setting up a video shoot or balancing the insights we help collect during an engagement.

Each client is assigned their own dedicated program manager to provide development, implementation, training and follow-up support.


2. Our platform is focused on solutions for both synchronous and asynchronous engagements.

ExtendMed differentiates itself from Within3 and other platforms by focusing on both synchronous and asynchronous interactions and engagements, from curated, synchronous live or virtual meetings with interactive features to asynchronous surveys and discussion boards.

This combined approach to engagement offers some wholly new capabilities that teams find both convenient and extremely valuable. For example, ExtendMed offers survey tools that allow answers to be controlled and not viewable by other participants. This is perfect for teams who want to hear from each of their advisors and get their input on questions or topics that may be sensitive and not appropriate to make visible to others.

Our tools are also unique in that they enable teams to segment and quantify their market research in a way that is not so easy to do with live discussions alone. Teams can survey audiences with a more person-by-person focus, versus a discussion board, which gives everyone the opportunity to start to engage back and forth in new ways that may allow teams to collect insights in ways they simply couldn’t before.

Here are a few relevant capabilities that set us apart:

  • Host synchronous live meetings to facilitate a real-time conversation and gather insights within the same software as your asynchronous engagements.
  • Invite advisors to share answers to survey questions privately during a virtual meeting or conduct complete asynchronous surveys.
  • Invite participants to engage with one another at their own convenience using our discussion board feature.
  • Gather more of your insights into one platform to segment, quantify, and compare your market research.
  • Follow up a virtual meeting with reviews and discussion, moderated by an expert who can elicit further feedback from advisors.

We find that it’s often not enough to just offer a synchronous or just an async approach. They’re perfect complements to each other. Asynchronous gives participants flexibility in terms of when they want to provide feedback. Some people prefer engaging first thing in the morning. Others prefer to engage at midnight. But there’s also real value in getting people together synchronously in a live or virtual space and reacting to one another naturally so it becomes a real-time conversation as opposed to a discussion that's happening on everyone's own time for the duration of an engagement. ExtendMed, unlike other platforms, gives you the tools and capabilities to take this combined approach and really raise the level of quality engagement.”

 — Amy Ravi, CEO, ExtendMed

3. Our resource center allows participants to review resources at any time—inside or outside the context of a discussion, survey, or virtual meeting.

Our platform enables your team to communicate efficiently and consistently by providing experts with access to helpful resources such as articles, slide decks, or interactive visual aids on demand or during an interaction.


We’ve found that discussion boards work really well when your team has something to review. Maybe it's a follow-up to a virtual meeting. There's an opportunity for everyone to review materials and comment back and forth with their colleagues or peers over a specific time window—maybe a week to three weeks. With ExtendMed, they can have that discussion moderated by an expert who can probe deeper and get at some specific questions or share out a comment and look for further feedback from the advisors' part of that discussion. So it's really the combination of these things and the way we offer them, that's different from Within3. And we find that our clients find it valuable that way.”

 — Amy Ravi, CEO, ExtendMed

4. Our flexible approach to contracting enables teams to start with a low-commitment pilot project rather than committing long-term right away.

Our smaller size enables us to offer you much more flexibility when it comes to contracting. Within3 has done an impressive job serving the very top of the pharma market that is more comfortable and better resourced for immediate large-scale engagements.

Simply put, our tool is perfectly tuned for the mid-size market: those who may be more interested in starting with a six-month pilot rather than a longer-term commitment. Perhaps you’re working with a steering committee, which is only needed for a shorter period of time. Having that flexibility with us from a contracting perspective—as well as from a community-building perspective—is something our clients find particularly valuable. With us, you’ll get budget and project duration flexibility that’s hard to find elsewhere.

Client Showcase: Starting Small and Growing Smart

One of our engagements with a mid-size biopharmaceutical company demonstrates the value of starting with a small pilot program and building iteratively on its success:

  • Following the discovery of a new therapeutic area and market for one of its drugs, a biopharmaceutical company partnered with ExtendMed to engage a single community of nephrologists for the first time.

  • Starting mid-year, the relatively small team, working closely with ExtendMed, used our platform to rapidly build relationships with providers, ultimately extending the contract to build on this success—stretching far beyond the initial pilot.

  • The company then expanded its program again to other therapeutic areas and specialties. After building communities of physicians, the team began engaging nurses treating particular therapeutic areas and patients with a particular disease.

  • The team then expanded its platform further to engage its core group of rheumatology specialists.

What started as a smaller scale project expanded with incremental success—a sort of proof-of-concept to validate each move from market to market and across key specialties. Today, this engagement channel has the opportunity to expand even further. We’re currently considering how this engagement model could help the company address other disease states they're focused on—and by extension, other specialty areas of these clinicians.

Who is ExtendMed best suited to serve?

Typically, the organizations that see the most value from working with us:

Want dedicated virtual ad board hosting software.

Seek to consolidate their results data from ad boards, surveys, and discussion board interactions into one place.

Need a customized solution.

Need a solution that doesn’t require a long-term contract.

Are searching for a smaller partner that can provide both the senior healthcare technology guidance and versatile software needed to help them effectively build a community.

If your team is searching for a smaller, more nimble partner that can provide both the senior healthcare technology guidance and versatile software needed to help them effectively build a community, or is in need of a solution with flexible contracting, ExtendMed may be the partner you’re looking for.

ExtendMed is the perfect complement for medical communications agencies—and companies working with them

We understand that gathering, combining, and reporting the data from virtual meetings, discussion boards, surveys, and more can be a challenge to coordinate and execute efficiently and effectively.

Our platform solutions combine dedicated senior-level healthcare technology consulting with synchronous and asynchronous KOL engagement tools to help medical communication agencies and pharmaceutical companies facilitate communication, gather insights, and deliver outcomes faster, more efficiently, and cost-effectively.

For life science companies working with medical communications agencies

Your medical communications agency plays an essential role in understanding your market and crafting precise content and messaging. What’s often missing, however, is a technology partner whose expertise lies in sharing that message with your audiences and soliciting feedback and insights from them.

Often, this step consists of pieced-together tools and a less-than-ideal strategy. Meetings are hosted on one platform, surveys on another, and so on. Insights are siloed. Dots go unconnected. Without a dedicated set of tools for bringing your outstanding content to key audiences, it’s difficult to develop an overall communication strategy that achieves consistent, genuine awareness with providers, payors, patients, and others.

This is the critical gap ExtendMed fills. We complement the expertise and capabilities of your medical communications agency with a suite of engagement tools and the analysis capabilities that enable you to share your content, solicit feedback and insights from thought leaders, and distribute those learnings across the organization and outside of it. We bring unique expertise and efficiencies in producing content in different formats and facilitating the engagements you need—all at a fraction of the cost and complexity of traditional approaches.

For medical communications agencies themselves

Looking for a technology partner whose expertise complements your agency’s to provide a far better service to your clients? We routinely partner with agencies that are tired of managing franken-systems that frustrate clients and stakeholders alike.

Agencies typically partner with us when they’re ready to radically streamline all of these “curated” tools and technologies into one platform that provides their team, and their clients, with the convenience and rich insights they expect when it comes to stakeholder engagement, specifically.

Free your team to focus on crafting exceptional content and messaging while we provide the engagement tools that deliver desired outcomes faster and more reliably. We don’t replace what you do best, but rather, arm you with a mechanism for gathering, tracking, and distributing insights so you can spend more time and attention doing what you do best. Give your content the platform it deserves.

Our solutions—at a glance


Support rich expert discussion and debate within a secure online network. Host a virtual ad board, a steering committee, or a clinical study update meeting for participating sites around the globe.

Advisor engagement & speaker bureau solutions:

  • Streamlined pre-meeting planning and setup
  • Strict adherence to production scheduled with tight budget management
  • Website setup with custom branding
  • Invitation and RSVP management with personalization and calendar integration
  • Speaker prep and logistics rehearsal
  • Participant pre-meeting technical system checks
  • Professional meeting facilitation and dedicated technical support
  • Post-meeting reporting and artificial intelligence analysis of key themes / critical perspectives


Leverage educational content across regions, professions, and specialties. Manage faculty, curricula, multimedia, content, and certification in one platform.

Advisor engagement & speaker bureau solutions:

  • Provide resources to users and engage in ongoing discussion boards
  • Test participant knowledge or gain feedback about materials embedded in a questionnaire or posted in a resource center
  • Send reminders for required assessments or reach out privately to follow up on a discussion comment
  • Manage curriculum with portfolio planning, needs assessment, and outcome evaluation


Track how many participants have engaged in each of your activities in your portal through a simple reporting dashboard.

Advisor engagement & speaker bureau solutions:

  • Speaker contracting and aggregate spend tracking
  • Speaker training (and presentation building)
  • Speaker profiles and event planning
  • Automated email alerts to attendees for logistical updates and post-event evaluation questionnaire
  • Speaker ratings from sales reps and attendees
  • Program closeout in compliance with Sunshine reporting regulations
  • Dedicated technical and content support


We've helped hundreds of organizations advance patient care with more efficient systems for engaging their experts and moving products forward.

ExtendMed gave me wonderful support in running this program, once again. It is so helpful to have a reliable technology partner for our virtual peer-to-peer programs (aka speaker programs with bureau). They reached out before the program to ask whether I had questions, during the program to make sure everything was running smoothly and after the program to make it easy for me to close out attendance and expenses, online."

Bridget Tygh
Territory Business Manager, Nabriva Therapeutics

In 25 years of working with vendors, ExtendMed stands at the top of the list. How so? They're strategic partners, arming my staff with vital statistics and sharing their experience and ideas for the future. They're nimble. We've had to change course in our work together. They've anticipated issues, recommended new directions, and implemented our decisions efficiently. They understand our business. ExtendMed provides us with instructional design and marketing support, and they communicate stepwise progress towards attaining our goals."

Jamie Arvizu
Vice President, Head of Medical Affairs, North America. Ultragenyx Pharmaceutical Inc.

Work with a partner that gets results.

Since 2000, we’ve been helping leaders in the pharmaceutical, biotech, and device industries—as well as medical communications agencies, research, and education organizations—deliver the efficiencies and capabilities they need to focus on the work that matters most. Are you next?

A pharmaceutical company needed timely and frequent feedback from a panel of KOLs around the creation of a patient database to collect real-world data post-product launch.

ExtendMed saved them more than 200 hours by shifting away from traditional meetings. Our platform cut the cost of soliciting the perspectives of these thought leaders by two-thirds.

A mid-size pharmaceutical company lacked marketing focus and wanted to use a group of KOLs to assess their marketing strategy.

Using ExtendMed to streamline market testing between external experts and the commercial team, the company began monthly outreach to build stronger specialist relationships, differentiated its position in a competitive market, and enabled clinical experts to provide feedback at their convenience—better noting the actions taken from their input.

Your pathway to better expert interactions

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Schedule a call with our team. We’ll discuss your goals, challenges, and potential solutions.

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Get a personalized demo of our platform and services. If we’re a fit, we’ll work closely with your team to craft and deliver a solution to your precise needs.

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You save time planning, organizing, and facilitating interactions, harvest deeper insight from experts, and quickly deliver useful information and updates to stakeholders.

How long are you going to wait to solicit better insights across your programs?

Submit the form below and we’ll be in touch within one business day.