Online Health Care Ads Drive Consumer Action

by | 2 minute read

We’ve all been there: accessing the internet to figure out whether that rash is from a tick bite or poison ivy. Consumers’ increasing use of online resources to access medical information is an opportunity for your clients. Here’s how online ads are influencing consumers who want to know the latest on important medical topics.

Kantar Media’s 2018 MARS Consumer Health Study focused on U.S. adults’ attitude about medical information they find online. In the past three years, the number of consumers accessing the internet for health-related information has skyrocketed from 71% to 80 percent. And, nearly 23 million adults are accessing this kind of information through their smartphones. Consumers participating in Kantar Media's survey spend at least three hours a day with digital media. Of that time, about half is devoted to mobile devices.

Receiving an official diagnosis drives consumers to begin online research. Whether it’s diabetes or strep throat, consumers want more information. To get it, they look at the following sources:

  • Health information website 68%
  • Search engine results 66%
  • Website dedicated to specific medical condition 59%
  • Online support groups/social networks 42%

Consumers are also noticing health and wellness ads online and on traditional media. They also take action after watching ads they see on:

  • Mobile devices 60%
  • Internet 55%
  • TV 42%

For purposes of the Kantar Media study, taking action included started an online search (24%), refilled a prescription (17%), or took medication (14%.)

These survey findings are in line with the data on diabetic adults reported by AudienceSCAN found at AdMall from SalesFuel. According to that study, at least 61% of diabetic adults have taken action as a result of a TV ad they’ve seen in the past year. And nearly 50% have taken action after noticed a sponsored search result.

The Kantar Media study serves as an important reminder for health care advertisers. Consumers are looking for information online. When they see online ads for related products and services, they’ll start making calls, asking questions and ultimately, making purchases.

Kathy Crosett
Kathy is the Vice President of Research for SalesFuel. She holds a Masters in Business Administration from the University of Vermont and oversees a staff of researchers, writers and content providers for SalesFuel. Previously, she was co-owner of several small businesses in the health care services sector.