Why is Mobile an Afterthought for Healthcare Marketing?

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When 25% of people use their smartphones to browse the Internet, why is it that only 10% of websites are mobile optimized, whether through the use of a responsive design approach or a separate mobile website. This is a significant, and unfortunate, wasted opportunity for healthcare brands (which happen to trend less than this general statistic).

Marketing Healthcare (given the value of what organization’s can provide and the value that people are seeking) is one of the biggest opportunities for the utilization of mobile web content. Yet the industry tends to ignore the mobile web channel. As such, an organization’s ability to stay relevant and close to its customers, and connect to new ones, is marginalized.

Missed Opportunities for Brand Engagement

There are a lot of opportunities to promote brand engagement in places where patients might already be browsing on their phones and tablets. For instance, according to Our Mobile Planet, 70% of women will browse on their phone in waiting rooms at a doctors office. What a timely and natural opportunity for them to browse your content or sign up for classes or newsletters related to the purpose of their visit. However, they will be less inclined to engage if your site is not optimized for mobile viewing. For these women, it’s on to their next task.

Getting More Mileage From Content Creation

Many healthcare brands create separate mobile sites that only include a small subset of their full website experience. They include locations, contact info, and find a doc functionality. Yet the more useful and brand-enhancing videos, articles and calendars of events, for instance, are rendered unusable. Again, another wasted opportunity for two-way value creation.

Content creation for the web, especially for large healthcare organizations with multiple hospitals and medical specialties, is a time consuming and exhaustive process. It is important that the content you are creating is getting as much mileage as possible. That means getting that content in front of multiple audiences regardless of where they are and the device through which they’re connecting.

Perception is Reality

Don’t underestimate the power of perception. Healthcare marketing and advertising is a billion dollar industry with much emphasis placed (whether right or wrong) on touting advancements in medicine and technology. But are consumers supposed to believe that an organization is on the bleeding edge of technology when its web presence looks dated and its mobile site is non-existent. You only have one chance to make a first impression, and websites are so often that first impression.

You can continue to simply communicate that your technology is cutting-edge. But if you are wrapping that information up in a way that does not look and feel advanced, and doesn’t meet customers needs in ways they want, then it looks like (in fact is) an empty promise. Customers don’t compartmentalize their experience with brands. So you can’t just claim your position, you need to demonstrate it with a smart interface and a consideration for the modern web technologies and resultant benefits that are integral to, and possibly make a difference in the lives of, your audiences.

2 thoughts on “Why is Mobile an Afterthought for Healthcare Marketing?

  1. Good points Chris.

    Healthcare marketers must be able to communicate with, and deliver value, where, when and how audiences want. If not, they’re leaving valuable connections and relationships on the table for others to grab.

    Eric

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