Health Care Marketers Promoting Healthy Behavior Modeling Tools

BY Courtney Huckabay
Featured image for “Health Care Marketers Promoting Healthy Behavior Modeling Tools”

Technological solutions, like assistive tech or smartphone apps, can play a big role in monitoring and communicating with the health care team more frequently, according to Marc Iskowitz. According to a Compuware study in 2013, though, anywhere from 80% to 90% of all downloaded apps are used once and then eventually deleted by the users. Read on to see four trends that hold the promise of nudging healthier behavior along the patient journey.

Clinicians have a limited understanding of what makes people's lives tick. “Most physicians only see patients maybe once or twice a year if they're stable — maybe four times a year if they're unstable,” adds Dr. Majmudar, who's also a board member of the MIT Hacking Medicine Institute. “So it's very hard for us to have a meaningful impact on a consistent and continual basis.”

Doctors and clinics can help change and reinforce patient behavior through advertising in health and medical sections. AudienceSCAN reported 15.6% of adults said the health and medicine sections are their favorite sections to read in newspapers and magazines.

1. STAGE: EXPERIENCING SYMPTOMS | TREND: Marketers get serious about behavior change

Behavior change has been in place in a lot of ways in marketing for decades and decades,” says Johanna ­Skilling, EVP, director of planning, U.S., at Ogilvy CommonHealth Worldwide. “Every time you ‘click here' or ‘call here' or download something, that's behavior change. We just didn't call it that. So we've been doing it, we just didn't necessarily mean it.”

If the patient is not ready to change, even the most innovative intervention could be useless. “Most of our interventions seem to be focused on the action phase, and there are maybe 20% of patients in healthcare [who] are actually in an action stage,” noted Dr. Richard Payne, a behavioral psychologist and consultant, at the 2016 MM&M Transforming Healthcare conference.

"What's the upshot for marketers? It's not to provide a silver bullet for influencing people's decision-​making, said Guidemark Health's Fred Petito at MM&M Transforming Heathcare, but to achieve a slightly more nuanced understanding of decision-​making so that marketers can engage a bit better.
Novo Nordisk's Cornerstones4Care is a prime example. This program added co-​pay support, email reinforcement, and personal coaching from a certified diabetes nurse educator."

In the next 12 months, 66.5% of Health and Medicine Readers want to buy things that help them feel "healthy," AudienceSCAN revealed.

2. STAGE: DIAGNOSIS AND DECISION | TREND: Virtual humans make their presence felt

"Conversations are an extremely powerful tool to drive changes in behavior. More than a dozen published studies show Kognito's VH simulations result in statistically significant and sustained increases in motivation and skills to engage in conversations, according to the firm."

3. STAGE: TREATMENT | TREND: Health tech goes granular

"Behavior change in healthcare is perhaps most associated with chronic disease, but diabetes and heart disease tend to attract the most attention. A number of new companies are now tackling other chronic health problems such as depression."

"One of these is Iodine, whose Start app aims to help people make an informed decision, after six weeks, as to whether an antidepressant is working for them or not by tracking doses and monitoring side effects. It can also be used to share progress reports with doctors."

"It was one of six CareKit apps available, as of this writing, following Apple's March 2016 launch of CareKit to give developers a framework for building apps that manage daily well-​being. It followed Apple's March 2015 launch of ResearchKit, which seeks to help researchers gather data for clinical studies, and HealthKit, the platform launched in fall 2014 that lets app developers ­integrate tracking of health metrics."

"While it's very early days in terms of their use, 15% of online U.S. adults already say they want their care team to monitor their health remotely but their doctor doesn't provide those services yet, according to Decision Resources Group. “It's the holy grail of patient centricity,” quips DRG principal analyst Matthew Arnold.

According to AudienceSCAN data, in the past 6 months, 19.3% of Health and Medicine Readers have used smartphones or tablets to read the local newspaper via their website or app, so tech can serve the health care industry well – and so can ads placed here.

4. STAGE: CONDITION MANAGEMENT | TREND: Uber fuels on-​demand ride revolution

"Some 3.6 million patients miss their appointments annually due to lack of transportation access. What if someone could soften the issue of patients getting to their lifesaving appointments? “For the disabled low-​income populations that rely on nonemergency medical transport, this is a real issue,” reports John Brownstein, the PhD epidemiologist behind digital health tools like the MedWatcher mobile app and StreetRx​.com. He has partnered with Uber on a new effort called Circulation to eliminate bottlenecks at this leg of the patient journey. Circulation is a HIPAA-​compliant cloud-​based software tool designed to help triage the right ride for the right patient."

AudienceSCAN data is available as part of a subscription to AdMall for Agencies, or with the SalesFuel API. Media companies can access AudienceSCAN data through the AudienceSCAN Reports in AdMall.