Savvy Health Consumer
The article from Ogilvy might dismiss too easily the new power of the savvy health consumer as well as benefits from therapies such as homeopathy. However, it is bang on about increased consumer engagement in health.
With consumers keener than ever before when it comes to their health, brands must ensure that the services they provide offer accountability, autonomy and control across all aspects of wellness.
The consumer’s growing insistence on taking ownership of their own health and wellbeing coincides, unsurprisingly, with the proliferation of personal trackers and a host of other wearable devices which provide people with unprecedented insight into their own bodies. This enables a level of personalisation, from workout recommendations to preventative health measures, that we’ve never seen before. “Averages are great in concept, but silly in our daily lives,” says Kimball Leslie. “A BMI is like a caveman calculation; it’s not that great an indicator of how healthy we are. Big data is able to deliver exactitudes.”
It’s possible, even likely, that the modern human instinct to save and share content will translate to our health data. And so the challenge facing the healthcare world is building a platform which encompasses myriad elements; devices and diagnostics, therapists and practitioners, hospitals and home health agencies. “With 1,100 terabytes of data generated per lifetime, there’s an arms race going on right now, regarding who’s going to build the health platform of record,” she adds.
Not Data But Knowledge
It is not the terabytes of data that will improve health. It is what we do with that data. Sometimes we need an atomic clock. Sometimes a sun dial will suffice. More data in a sick care model only means more efficient sick care. However, those brands that meet the consumer’s desire for health (not sick care) will prosper greatly. The target for those forward-thinking brands will be the “physical, mental and social well-being and not merely the absence of disease or infirmity”, as the World Health Organization defined “health” decades ago.
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