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A September 2015 study from Lansons, a London-based consultancy, found that lots of UK internet users consider mobile apps and online communities to be useful for providing health information. Indeed, almost half (47%) of respondents ages 18 to 40 said they found online communities useful for diagnosing symptoms or providing reassurance about health issues; a further 42% said the same of mobile apps.
But while consumers in the UK are increasingly taking their healthcare online, the industry isn’t following with ad spend. According to Standard Media Index (SMI) data from September this year, digital ad spending in the UK pharmaceuticals sector accounted for just 1% of total ad spend for the industry in 2014.
An August 2015 report from video ad platform Videology painted a similar picture, albeit from a slightly different perspective. It found that as a proportion of all video impressions served via its platform, pharmaceuticals accounted for just 2% in the UK.
Whatever the measure, there’s an interesting juxtaposition between growing consumer engagement with digital healthcare and laggard digital marketing tactics among those in the pharmaceuticals industry.
Wearable tech looks set to push digital healthcare still further ahead. Marketers in the industry may want to get out of the slow lane to keep up.
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