If there’s one thing we know about a new year it is that people have a renewed focus on their health and personal fitness. After dealing with the past two and a half years of the pandemic, healthcare has become an even greater if not the most important focus in our lives. From personal fitness goals to chronic illness, the world of healthcare is vast and frankly, dense, for marketers on internal and agency teams to crack.

The trick, however, is to understand who you want to reach and how to get them. Doing so requires key data insights around behavior, consumer spending habits, and demographics and the way that they all coalesce into your target demographic. What’s fascinating from the Dstillery side is how much our healthcare audiences have grown and changed over the course of the pandemic and how new pockets of overlaps and intenders have emerged.

In addition to making pre-pandemic healthcare assumptions, marketers must open their minds to healthcare’s newer audiences and the ways they overlap with other consumer segments such as fitness and mental health, along with industry mainstays such as chronic illness and medical procedure research. This means looking at more data over a wider array of topics and data points to drive interest and return on investment. Luckily for those in healthcare, the data is out there and it is plentiful.

Choosing Your Targets

If one industry is tried and true with its audiences, it’s healthcare. People all follow the same arc, they’re little, they grow, and they grow, and they grow, and suddenly they’re old. Within all of that growth, they’re getting sick, recovering, developing new health conditions, and making lifestyle changes to increase the longevity of their lives. The life story has a ton of component pieces that Dstillery has taken and parsed out into tons of pre-built audiences that can be utilized for marketing campaigns. Considering the three main stages of human life, let’s look at three segments of healthcare consumers:

  • Children and Teenagers
  • Middle Aged People
  • Elderly People

Understanding the Influence of Healthcare Trends

Sure, it’s easy to identify the three most obvious groups of consumers in healthcare but let’s bring it down into a more approachable level. Looking back on 2021 it seems like everyone was wrapped up with COVID in mind regarding their personal health. 

However, many personal healthcare motivations remained the same. For example, many people renewed their interest in personal fitness early in the year. Kids are outdoors more than ever, but also more digitally connected with devices and screens for schooling and leisure activity. Over the summer, we began to see a renewed interest in action sports and physical activity that required consumers to be outside and engaged with their bodies. For older consumers, there was a blanket uptick in regular check-ups, with an emphasis on heart and lung health as well as increased interest in exploring regular exercise activity. 

What this tells us is that the average healthcare consumer within our classic targeting groups is much more dynamic and sophisticated than being summarized as simply a “fitness intender” or a “medical procedure researcher.” The three demographics we looked at before suddenly become more interesting when you view them like this:

Children and Teenagers 

  • Eyeglasses Shoppers
  • Eyeglasses and Contact Lens Buyers
  • Dermatology / Dermatologists
  • Pediatricians
  • Asthma Sufferers
  • Dentists

Middle Aged People

  • Cardio Health Researchers
  • Vegans / Vegetarians
  • Oncologists
  • Endocrinology
  • Fertility Treatment Researchers
  • Gastroenterologists 
  • Reproductive Health

Late Aged and Elderly People

  • Joint Pain Sufferers
  • Generic Prescription Pill Shoppers
  • Arthritis Sufferers
  • Neurologists
  • Heart Surgery Researchers
  • Orthopedic Health Researchers

Observing and Predicting Healthcare Trends

Now that you can begin to see how complex the average healthcare consumer is and how their needs are determined by lifestyle or seasonal activities, you can begin to needle in on new ways to leverage their motivations. 

Healthcare marketers must understand that one-size-fits-all audiences may be useful in gaining large swaths of consumer segments, but needling in and understanding their behaviors seasonally or habitually will provide the most return on investment. These audiences can come from our recommendations based on pre-built data segments and seed sets, or via first-party data. 

With an ever-changing and evolving customer base, our audiences can be as fluid as your campaign demands. 

Consumer Trends and Data Privacy

One approach to reaching new healthcare-based audiences is to leverage our ID-free Custom AI solution to provide a more privacy-forward and behavior-forward audience solution. ID-free is built differently than our cookie-based audiences. The product is a new privacy-by-design patient targeting solution that reaches your healthcare brand’s best patients while protecting their privacy. Unlike wasteful and stagnant audience segmentation, ID-free is a dynamic model that targets individual impressions based on patients’ behavior. This is all done without any user tracking ensuring 100% compliance with all laws, policies, and guidelines.

Powered by patented neural network technology, the product constantly analyzes hundreds of millions of anonymous patient journey patterns and learns the health condition and behavioral signals underlying any web visit. Using a healthcare brand’s first-party data, the product creates a just-for-your-brand model that evaluates anonymous impressions individually to select the ones most likely to convert.

We do this all without the use of cookies, but rather behaviors that we see trend across websites, seed sets, and other data points to build privacy-forward audiences to help future-proof digital marketing campaigns.

Leveraging the Signals

The segmentation and trend analysis we just walked through is commonplace within all Dstillery campaigns. Consumers broadcast tons of signals out into the ether of the internet and it’s our job to understand and distill that information into useful, tangible results for digital marketers. There’s a huge chance that your brand has useful seed set data for us to utilize and build custom AI audiences for your next marketing campaign. 

It’s not worth the time or money to throw marketing dollars into the hands of audience solutions companies that won’t explain, research, or optimize your campaigns for you. Our audience solutions are dynamic, cutting edge, and built on seizing opportunities as they are and as they arise.