Use and Effectiveness of a Video- and Text-Driven Web-Based Computer-Tailored Intervention: Randomized Controlled Trial

M.J.L. Walthouwer*, A. Oenema, L. Lechner, H. de Vries

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review


Background: Many Web-based computer-tailored interventions are characterized by high dropout rates, which limit their potential impact. Objective: This study had 4 aims: (1) examining if the use of a Web-based computer-tailored obesity prevention intervention can be increased by using videos as the delivery format, (2) examining if the delivery of intervention content via participants' preferred delivery format can increase intervention use, (3) examining if intervention effects are moderated by intervention use and matching or mismatching intervention delivery format preference, (4) and identifying which sociodemographic factors and intervention appreciation variables predict intervention use. Methods: Data were used from a randomized controlled study into the efficacy of a video and text version of a Web-based computer-tailored obesity prevention intervention consisting of a baseline measurement and a 6-month follow-up measurement. The intervention consisted of 6 weekly sessions and could be used for 3 months. ANCOVAs were conducted to assess differences in use between the video and text version and between participants allocated to a matching and mismatching intervention delivery format. Potential moderation by intervention use and matching/mismatching delivery format on self-reported body mass index (BMI), physical activity, and energy intake was examined using regression analyses with interaction terms. Finally, regression analysis was performed to assess determinants of intervention use. Results: In total, 1419 participants completed the baseline questionnaire (follow-up response=71.53%, 1015/1419). Intervention use declined rapidly over time; the first 2 intervention sessions were completed by approximately half of the participants and only 10.9% (104/956) of the study population completed all 6 sessions of the intervention. There were no significant differences in use between the video and text version. Intervention use was significantly higher among participants who were allocated to an intervention condition that matched their preferred intervention delivery format. There were no significant interaction terms for any of the outcome variables; a match and more intervention use did not result in better intervention effects. Participants with a high BMI and participants who felt involved and supported by the intervention were more likely to use the intervention more often. Conclusions: Video delivery of tailored feedback does not increase the use of Web-based computer-tailored interventions. However, intervention use can potentially be increased by delivering intervention content via participants' preferred intervention delivery format and creating feelings of relatedness. Because more intervention use was not associated with better intervention outcomes, more research is needed to examine the optimum number of intervention sessions in terms of maximizing use and effects.
Original languageEnglish
Article numbere222
JournalJournal of Medical Internet Research
Issue number9
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2015

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