3 Trends Driving Healthcare Innovation
Years ago, patients would believe anything their doctors told them. Doctors were the ultimate authority and patients didn’t have the knowledge to push back or doubt them. You want to attach leeches to my arm while still covered in the blood of your previous patients? Sure doc, if you say so!
Additionally, doctors had a far more limited repertoire of treatment options to offer their patients. Take those aforementioned leeches—they were used to treat everything from headaches to hemorrhoids.
Obviously, this is no longer the case. Patients now have an abundance of medical information literally at their fingertips. And doctors have exponentially more options when it comes to the products and treatments they can offer their patients.
This shift in consumer knowledge and choice has quickly accelerated in the past few years, shaking the roots of what we thought we knew about healthcare and triggering a renewed focus on breakthrough innovation within the category.
With that in mind, here’s a look at three ways increased knowledge and choice are driving the future of healthcare innovation.
1. Patients in the Driver’s Seat
Patients are rejecting medical passivity and are inserting their voice into the conversation. Empowered by information from health apps and online sources, consumers have more confidence in their own opinions and want to know that their individual needs are recognized by the medical community.
CareMore Health is an excellent example of a health system that puts patients at the center of care. Their services focus on giving patients more time for individual attention and finding the root of health problems by analyzing individuals’ social, economic and behavioral factors. This model helps bring the patient’s voice to the forefront of the treatment dialogue so that they can receive better, more personalized care.
Key Takeaway: Businesses in the health field can stay ahead of the curve by innovating their offerings and marketing communication to center around patient needs. Letting consumers know that they are heard and that they have advocates in the medical community is more important than ever.
2. Taking Tech Queues
Fitbit, Facetime doctor visits, and health apps are just the beginning of the technological revolution happening in healthcare. Countless companies have started integrating technology with their offerings to help consumers continuously maintain their wellness.
Examples include products like the Zeeq pillow, which tracks sleeping patterns, and Upright Go, a posture-correcting-wearable—both of which have technology that communicates with smartphone apps.
Key Takeaway: Many products and services in the market have the potential to integrate new technologies that optimize the consumer experience and improve health. Companies need to remain vigilant so they can capitalize on opportunities to incorporate the kind of tech that can aid their consumers.
3. Medicine and Consumerism Collide
Consumers have more choice in medical products than ever before—and they often make selections based on emotional connections. There are nearly 50,000 class 1, 2 and 3 devices, many of which serve the same purposes. Similar to trends in consumer-packaged goods, consumers in the medical industry are increasingly looking for products that both suit their functional needs and provide an emotional benefit.
For example, Martin Bionics appeals to prosthetic limb users on both a functional and emotional level. While there are plenty of other sockets options, Martin Bionics’ socket is more customizable and enables the user to move more comfortably throughout their day—empowering them with a greater sense of freedom and confidence.
Key Takeaway: Medical products will need to highlight things like empathy-based design and emotional benefits rather than only functional elements in order to appeal to consumers more deeply. Companies that find ways to distinguish their products from the competition in these ways will have more success with modern consumers.
Check out the Life Sciences section on our website or contact Cherri Prince to learn more about how Seed’s expertise in Life Sciences can help you accelerate your growth.
Written by Maryanne Smith. Maryanne worked as a Strategy Summer Associate at Seed Strategy and is currently majoring in Entrepreneurship and Finance at Miami University’s Farmer School of Business. She is passionate about using her natural curiosity to improve the world around her through innovation.
Edited by Adam Siegel. In addition to being the Editor of The Accelerator, Adam is a VP, Creative at Seed Strategy where he draws upon his diverse experience in advertising, research and innovation to craft breakthrough creative and winning concept copy.
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