Healthcare is changing rapidly. Key discoveries in healthcare are being introduced at an ever-accelerating pace, transforming the practice of medicine. In the 1950s, practicing physicians could expect the total amount of medical knowledge to double every 50 years. Now it’s estimated that by 2020 medical knowledge will double every 73 days.
The innovation and complexity of medical device technology is particularly challenging for doctors. The World Health Organization recognized in a recent report that the growing complexity of technology is contributing to adverse events and misuse.
The evolution of our medical education system is vital to overcoming this daunting challenge for practitioners. One emerging trend in medical education is the role of the medical device company and other industry players in the educational process. Industry has begun to pay attention to how they can help alleviate this firehose of information in looking to engage doctors with a new product.
Not only is the speed of innovation impacting how doctors consume new information, the system’s shift to evidence-based medicine is a trend the industry can no longer overlook. Now, the focus is on ensuring doctors have access to comprehensive, up-to-date information for making the most informed treatment decisions.
Making informed treatment decisions is a crucial part of evidence-based medicine. With more options for treatment, physicians are doing their due diligence to properly research and educate themselves before integrating anything new into their practice.
This is why we designed VuMedi to be a one-stop shop for comprehensive medical education driven by peer-to-peer interaction.
When looking to make an informed decision, doctors trust their peers most. The result is an engaged audience with a high level of trust for the content on the platform. Today, over 250,000 physicians, 150 leading hospitals and medical conferences, and 5,000 content authors come together on VuMedi to embrace a new way of keeping up with the pace of innovation. Clinicians can watch videos and decide for themselves which approach they want to use in their practice.
This reach has afforded us an understanding of how digital marketing efforts can better impact doctors. Digital will never replace the value of meeting with a rep, especially for complex devices. But video education platforms give marketing teams an easy place to step into the digital marketing world with data and feedback on performance that they’ve never had before.
Consider the marketing tactics and ROI brands are typically investing in. There’s a large investment in activity driven marketing that covers the placement of print ads, interactive labs and conference presence. Here, ROI is primarily calculated based on perception of how busy a booth seemed or how many people attended.
On top of that, these efforts have largely been disconnected from sales as CRMs and other platforms have had slower adoption in the industry. The result is little visibility into ROI and a marketing team that operates in a silo.
Focusing on online education not only gives doctors the depth of information they need to make decisions but also provides the marketer with a digital touchpoint that can be tracked and understood.
Additionally, it allows marketing to align messages with evidence-based medicine. Evidence-based medicine is reliant on three key pillars: patient values, clinical expertise, and research. Long-form video education allows them to grow a stronger foundation for both clinical expertise and research.
We’ve seen industry partners find a way to embrace this shift using the platform. Unlike content hosted by life science manufacturers or other education sites that tend to promote only paying manufacturers, we curate content from competitive hospitals, manufacturers, and key opinion leaders (KOL). All of this content is educational in nature; not promotional.
Device manufacturers are investing heavily in peer-to-peer communication that aligns with evidence-based medicine, and this is an important part of their content strategy.
Industry has gotten very creative in its use of KOLs and creating practice-changing content; content that adds to doctor’s level of clinical expertise and is supported by clinical research. Doctors engage with four types of KOL videos: broad education, case-based education, best practice and procedural videos.
- Videos that focus on broader education of the disease or diagnosis that device impacts are very common and very helpful. These videos add to a doctor’s clinical expertise and help in better identifying and understanding of the disease state.
- Case-based education walks a doctor through a specific case that was encountered and all considerations in working through it.
- Best practices typically come from those who have already adopted the new procedure or device in practice regularly and look to provide tips on how to be most effective.
- Procedural videos hone in on a specific step or highlight the multiple steps needed to be taken to do something correctly.
The engagement levels on VuMedi speak to an opportunity for device marketers to deliver messages that matter to their target audience and track the ROI that digital marketing affords. On average, a doctor watches six videos on VuMedi for over 40 minutes every month. For device content specifically, a video captures approximately 13 minutes of a physician’s attention. Brands have an exciting opportunity to bring value to the doctors they are trying to reach. The opportunity is authentic, thoughtful dialogue that contributes to the clinical decision making process.
Roman Giverts is the CEO and founder of VuMedi, the leading healthcare video education network for doctors. As a student at the University of California, Berkeley, Giverts created VuMedi while working as one of TechCrunch’s first interns.