Virtual and Augmented Reality and the Future of Healthcare Marketing

Virtual and Augmented Reality and the Future of Healthcare Marketing

Technology merges with healthcare marketing through VR and AR.

Since the phenomenal worldwide success of “Pokemon GO” in 2016, augmented reality has been a hot topic of conversation for techies and healthcare marketers alike. Virtual reality in the healthcare market has already grown to $976 million.

Augmented reality (AR) allows users to view their surrounding world on a screen with superimposed CGI effects, blending the real world with technology in a way we haven’t seen before.  You may be more familiar with virtual reality (VR), which encompasses users in a completely digital landscape.

It seems we’re finally reaching the precipice of what we’ve dreamed society might look like in a technology-driven future, and the potential for augmented and virtual reality to become platforms for healthcare marketing has the industry more than excited. So, how can AR and VR be incorporated into healthcare marketing?

Groundbreaking Therapies

Developing and having access to the most innovative and successful healthcare therapies is at the forefront of a hospital’s goals. Being able to tout virtual and augmented reality related medical therapies that have a successful track record is a marketing tool that hospitals won’t want to be without. Here are some prime examples of how VR and AR are helping doctors treat and communicate with patients.

Preventative Care

AR and VR have huge potential for preventative care and are already being used to give patients a first-hand look at what health-risky behaviors could lead to in their futures. For example, virtual reality can place a person under the future medical conditions that they might experience if they continue an unhealthy lifestyle. Imagine being able to virtually see your body under the conditions you would experience from long term smoking, illegal drug use or unhealthy eating and drinking habits? Because virtual reality allows a user to mentally process an experience in much the same way they do a real life experience, VR can impact a user’s emotions and decisions in a more effective way than a commercial or pamphlet. Pharmaceutical companies that develop treatments for the effects of unhealthy lifestyles can utilize this technology to better sell patients on the benefits of treatment.

Healthcare Training and Assistance

The potential and existing use of AG in healthcare training and assistance are still being explored. Technologies already exist that help train and assist nurses with completing intravenous injections. AccuVein is an AG scanner that helps healthcare practitioners pinpoint where a vein is in a person’s arm – making those missed needle sticks a thing of the past.

Promoting new technology like this will be at the forefront of healthcare marketing trends in 2017.

Creating Informed and Trusting Patients

As marketing and branding in general shift toward straightforward, authentic, and honest storytelling, technologies that assist in creating well-informed and trusting healthcare patients will be a huge asset to marketing in the healthcare field. Pharma companies can now market their drugs to physicians, nurses and administrators along with technology that will help them better explain the effects and benefits of their products.

Augmented reality is allowing patients to view exactly how a drug works in their body. This visual representation puts patients at ease and creates an element of trustworthiness between pharmaceutical companies and medical technology innovators, physicians and patients. Furthermore, it’s a healthcare marketing strategy that focuses on creating visually captivating and informative content that is not ad-driven.

Take a look at how Bayer Healthcare is using AR to promote their treatment for atrial fibrillation.

Patients can better grasp their treatment with these innovations, so pharmaceutical companies that utilize and market this type of technology along with their products will surely have an advantage over those that don’t.

Incorporating AR and VR into marketing in a seamless, non ad-driven method is where healthcare marketing is moving. It’s exciting to see where these technologies will take us and how they will further advance medicine and healthcare. If you’re ready to add a more tech-driven approach to your healthcare marketing initiatives, contact us today.

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