Healthcare is one of the largest industries in our nation’s economy, accounting for more than 18% of U.S. GDP in 2021. Annual expenditures on healthcare average nearly $13,000 per person and roughly 7% of all searches on Google are health-related.
However, healthcare marketing efforts sometimes lag those of other massive industries. For example, while 70% of B2C marketers now use content marketing, only 28% of healthcare marketers have clearly documented content marketing strategies in the marketing mix.
ICD Healthcare Network recently explored the topic of healthcare marketing and some of the things to watch for in the coming months. Here are four healthcare marketing trends that are expected to gain momentum in 2024.
4 Trends to Watch in Healthcare Marketing
1. Generative AI Content Debates
The recent Hollywood writers’ strike has placed artificial intelligence (AI) in the spotlight throughout the creative community. Will writers, artists and performers eventually be displaced by AI-generated content? While that story has yet to be written, AI and its various ethical questions are topics of conversation in healthcare marketing circles as well.
AI already has powerful applications when it comes to analyzing patient data and predicting future healthcare trends. But what about healthcare marketing? Are any ethical issues created when AI is used to generate blogs, email campaigns or other patient-facing materials? Digital watermarks that indicate AI-generated content may be part of the solution. However, you can expect to see concerns about plagiarism, authenticity, accuracy and job security arise among healthcare marketers.
2. Hyper-Personalized Healthcare Experiences
AI is a source of angst in some areas but also has the potential to revolutionize the patient experience. Not limited by the time, retention and attention span of the human brain, AI has the power to scan an entire lifetime of medical records and seek meaningful patterns. So, instead of trying to get to know a patient by asking cursory questions and scanning EHRs, a physician may soon use AI to form a much deeper connection with a patient and their medical history.
This personalization can go both ways, of course. Patients may soon be able to access detailed dossiers about their doctors and nurses as a way of easing anxiety and enhancing patient-provider communication.
3. Immersive Patient Rooms
In-room patient experiences are also positioned to benefit from the use of AI and data analytics. Imagine a digital display that projects the photo and specialty of every doctor who enters the room. A simple RFID tag embedded in the provider’s name badge is all it takes.
The same applies to the ubiquitous patient whiteboard. Instead of using dry erase markers to hand-write information that may or may not be up to date, a digital whiteboard can display physical therapy schedules, lab test times and other critical information in real time.
4. Direct Mail
The fourth and final healthcare marketing trend for 2024 is somewhat of a throwback. As consumers become jaded by endless emails and banner ads, studies reveal that direct mail outperforms digital marketing in many regards.
According to the 2022 ANA Response Report, direct mail letters average a marketing ROI of 43%. Other sources reinforce this finding – and signal a potential shift toward tried-and-true direct mail marketing tactics:
· Up to 90% of direct mail gets opened compared to only 20-30% of emails. (Data & Marketing Association)
· 73% of American consumers prefer being contacted by direct mail because they can read it whenever they want. (Epsilon)
· Only 44% of people can recall a brand immediately after seeing a digital ad compared to 75% who receive direct mail. (Marketing Profs)
About Taylor Healthcare
Taylor Healthcare has been serving the healthcare industry for more than a century. From forms, labels and wristbands to facility signage, promo marketing, digital informed consent solutions and more, Taylor Healthcare is a leading provider of communications solutions throughout the continuum of care.
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