Health apps have not yet caught on with the majority of US internet users, according to a September 2013 survey from AYTM Market Research, but there are still a fair number—more than one-quarter—who reported having health-related apps and turning to them at least sometimes.
More than three-quarters of respondents reported being at least somewhat concerned about their health, which is why more may eventually turn to health apps to monitor their daily well-being or seek counsel when they’re feeling a bit “off.” Such apps are not necessarily about illness. They are increasingly used for fitness and diet purposes as well.
The greatest percentage of respondents—50.9%—reported using fitness apps, followed immediately by 50.3% who used general health apps. Diet apps were popular with just over three out of 10 respondents. Those apps targeted to specific diseases were less popular, although this is likely—hopefully, really—because fewer people suffer from a chronic condition that would necessitate its own app. Still, 17.6% reported using one.
Of those who do use health apps, more than two-thirds believed the apps had a significant impact on their health—the greatest endorsement such apps could garner. As lifestyle improvement becomes a critical concern for individuals—and mobile use expands its reach across the older population—the likelihood that more will engage with health apps is high.
This poses real opportunity for healthcare marketers wishing to advertise in apps or create their own. The Mobile Marketing Association and mLightenment estimated that this year, the US healthcare and social assistance industry would spend $265 million on mobile marketing. And by 2015, the industry will devote $539 million to mobile efforts.
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