Changing Marketing Paradigms

Traditionally, consumer marketing has focused on the “young invincibles” as they are sometimes referred to in healthcare. Those are the 18-34 year olds that traditionally were the DINKs (dual income no kids) and younger population with more disposable income or focused on acquiring goods (as they bought homes and started careers).

Well, I think this quote by Sunil Gupta summarizes the issue:

If [young adults] have no money in their pockets, there is nothing to sell them.

With 46% of those age 18-24 unemployed and 20% of those 25-34 living at home, this group’s financial dynamics are very different. The focus on both those with money and those driving the healthcare costs have shifted to Baby Boomers. (Facts from Time article on page 16 in the 4/9/12 edition.)

At the same time, I read an article about marketing to women which continue to make majority of healthcare decisions both for themselves and their families. (and caregivers (often women) are less likely to be adherent to their own medications.)  Here were the recommended approaches:

  • Offer highly personalized formats
  • Provide complete anonymity
  • Eliminate the middle man
  • Understand self-perceptions
  • Consider the unique point of sale

And, some of these changes are driven by the economy. For example, according to NCH Marketing and Parks Associates, 81% of people are using coupons regularly and they redeemed them for 3.5B in 2011. (Of course, the jury is still out on the Groupon model…)

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