Optimize Digital Services in the Health Care Space

Health care costs are high and rising. And many health care companies are leaning on digital services to reduce costs while improving customer satisfaction. To fully realize these benefits, companies need to understand the relevant attitudes and preferences of both multicultural and generational consumers.

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Consumers want lower healthcare costsThe cost of health care is a top concern, not only for patients, but for providers, insurers, and vendors too. As a result, organizations and companies working in the health care space are constantly pressed to produce better outcomes on tightening budgets. Tighter margins and the need for change is giving rise to technological innovations that reduce costs.

We’re already seeing digital service innovations take hold in this space: online and mobile platforms to manage health care and insurance plans, virtual visits, and apps and wearable tech to monitor health. These services offer clear efficiencies that translate into hard dollars for health care companies including

    1. Reduced administrative staff
    2. Improved consumer satisfaction
    3. Opportunity to leverage collected data

Digital services can be beneficialBut to fully realize these efficiencies, organizations need to drive mass utilization of their digital services. This is where marketing and branding have a huge role to play—driving digital service utilization among consumers.  And to do this right, companies need to understand the attitudes, preferences, and behaviors of diverse consumer segments to know how to capture their attention and drive utilization.

In late 2019, we spoke with our membership to understand their most pressing questions about complex digital services in the health care space. We heard the same three questions asked time and again, across health care vendors, providers, and insurers:

    1. Why don’t people use their health insurer’s digital platforms?
    2. What do people want from their digital platform?
    3. What are the emerging trends in health care digital services?

To answer these questions from both the multicultural and generational lens, we conducted a nationally representative survey this January with 2,442 respondents. We over-sampled consumers of older age groups so that we could analyze data with added precision for the Boomer+ generation. We also over-sampled the Hispanic segment across acculturation levels.

Strategic takeaways from our research include:

    1. The top reason consumers don’t use their health insurer’s website or app is that they think it’s unnecessary. They’re used to communicating in other ways, like over the phone. Clearly show them how using digital services will make their lives easier.
    2. People most want to learn about health care topics from online sources. Engage consumers with captivating online media that’s informative and connects them with your services.
    3. Younger and multicultural consumers are the most interested in virtual visits, but they’re also among the most skeptical of the quality of care. Put virtual offerings front and center, and make sure to convey the standards that ensure a high-quality visit.

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