How to Market to Savvy Health Care Consumers

posted by Pivotal Health Solutions on Friday, October 2, 2015

Today's health care consumers have done their research.

With evidence-based health information just a click away, marketers have begun to realize that communications once reserved for the health care professional are in high demand by savvy health care consumers. 

Marketers should keep these three considerations in mind: 

1) Are you marketing to the patient or to the consumer? There's a distinct difference. Consumers are the general public, while patients are those who might specifically benefit from your product or service. If you're allocating valuable marketing dollars, it likely makes better sense to market to the 70,000 people who might use your service versus the 115 million fans watching the Super Bowl (and would be much more cost-effective!). 

2) Are you marketing in the right channels? Traditional communications channels still have their place. But everyone is talking about social media and online marketing because that's where patients go to find health information. The second--and potentially even more impactful--avenue is their physicians. Your direct-to-patients marketing strategy should focus on digital marketing and physician materials that they can then provide to their patients to support meaningful discussions on treatment options. 

3) Are you marketing the right messages? Finally, make sure your marketing messages are on point. Sharing relevant, meaningful information about benefits--backed by clinical evidence--is far more important than a pretty picture. Today's savvy health care consumers know the difference. 

Ten years ago, when clients came to us to launch or market a medical device, the patient was barely a tertiary audience, much less a decision maker.

We might produce a "What to Expect" handout to help prepare them for surgery or a patient information booklet to support them after discharge, but the real content and communications were reserved for the health care professional (HCP).

Today, consumers have become knowledgeable health advocates for themselves and their families — likely influenced by health care reform, aggressive pharmaceutical advertising and a wealth of information available online. In addition, many products that had always been viewed as consumer goods have entered the health and medical realm.

This shift has significant implications for marketers who need to find effective ways of reaching and impacting a discerning consumer audience.

This article excerpt, by Cassie Benowitz, originally appeared here:


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At Pivotal Health Solutions, our story starts with a table. Not just any table, but one that you helped us design from the ground up. From that single table, PHS has become a leader in offering beautifully designed, quality-manufactured products for the complementary health care field.

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