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Healthcare marketing trends: Three potential game changers we’re watching

My smart colleagues from around the industry pack my RSS reader with hundreds of trends and insights every week. Of everything we’re talking and tweeting about right now, three things stand out to me as potential game changers in how we market to healthcare providers and people like us:

Apple dominates physician mobile views: iQ is often asked for research about what kind of smart phones docs are carrying – Blackberry? Android? Apple? Our client teams want to know what platforms to invest in (for native apps, text messaging formats, etc.) Maybe we were asking the wrong question. It may not matter what phone they’re carrying if they’re not using it to access mobile content. Bulletin Healthcare delivers daily email briefings to more than 550,000 healthcare providers, including more than 400,000 physicians (all opt in subscribers). They recently released some data about how those HCPs use mobile to access their content. The big news: 90% of mobile opens of their briefings occur on iPhone and iPad. Android got 6%. And, Blackberry/RIM barely registered. The analysis also showed that mobile consumption of medical news climbed by 45% between June and February. The result is that almost three in 10 healthcare professionals now access the daily medical information contained in their briefings on mobile platforms, while seven in 10 continue to use traditional desktop platforms. Read more

There’s big money behind a mobile physician-to-physician community: The founders of Epocrates (arguably the digital brand physicians trust most) recently secured $10.8 million in venture capital from Emergence Capital Partners and InterWest Partners to continue to develop Doximity, a secure physician community accessed primarily via a mobile app. This is a huge development for marketers who’ve been relying on the reach of Sermo. Epocrates has unequaled reach into the physician community with its medical reference content and its apps are already among the most downloaded and consistently referenced. Doximity could potentially leverage that audience to quickly grow from its current 7000 to hundreds of thousands.

In addition to being optimized for mobile interactions, Doximity is also real time and NOT anonymous. If Doximity chooses to create listening packages for advertisers, we’ll have an unprecedented view into who the true digital KOLs really are. However, much of the content and context will be private – Doximity supports very specific expert search as well as private text and MMS messaging. Sermo killer? Or really tricked out yellow pages? Read more

Kinect SDK could open the door to the next big thing in UX: This is a fantastic one – Earlier this month, Microsoft released a software development kit for its motion-controlled gaming system Kinect. That means third parties (like us) will be able to develop games and experiences that work on Kinect. You can imagine how this could reinvent how we think about UX. Today, most of the experience revolution is happening on the touch screen (in the apps and tools we’re developing of iPads and other slates.) Kinect opens up the potential of creating motion-based interfaces that connect with real-world human behavior. There’s big potential here because this is a hugely popular system/experience for consumers. After launching in November 2010 on the Xbox, Kinect became the fastest selling electronics device ever – eclipsing the iPad in units sold. It also looks like Microsoft is increasingly moving toward integrating Kinect with its core Windows operating system, which could bring Kinect-style functionality to the office and the exam room Read more. If you’re interested in this dynamic of reaching people where they really spend time (in the living room), don’t miss Jonathan Richman’s post on What Healthcare Educators Can Learn from John Madden – really good stuff

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