In 2021, KPMG outlined how the Indian healthcare market was at the “cusp of technology-led revolution.” The Big 4 accounting firm emphasized that the digital healthcare market will grow at an excellent CAGR of 27.4% up until 2024.
Fast forward to today, these projections seem quite in line — especially in the wake of discussions around AI’s substantial inclusion in healthcare heating up. The market growth can be attributed to the rise in the adoption of electronic medical records, telehealth, medical devices, infrastructural digital transformation, etc.
But what does this mean for healthcare-tech product companies? Can they leverage this opportunity?
Benefits and Opportunities for Product Companies
Product companies should focus on driving innovation in their offerings by developing new healthcare products and services or transforming the existing ecosystem.
Improving Operational Efficiency
A Deloitte report indicates that innovative healthcare-technology companies will achieve operational excellence as they respond to the rising healthcare needs of an aging population, prioritize home-based care, and adapt to changing wellness trends.
The evolving nature of healthcare offerings is paving the way for product companies to consolidate user-friendly interfaces, intuitive designs, and simplified workflows that can increase adoption rates among healthcare professionals and patients.
Collaboration with Healthcare Providers
Establishing partnerships with healthcare providers is allowing product companies to gain valuable insights into industry needs, validate products, and tailor solutions that align with healthcare workflows and requirements.
Developing Innovative Products
As per McKinsey, technology-driven and technology-enabled innovations have propelled medtech product companies to become the healthcare industry’s fastest-growing profit pool in the last five years.
Tech-led healthcare landscape ensures seamless integration and interoperability of products with existing healthcare systems, electronic health records (EHRs), and other healthcare technologies. This works well — both from the patient’s and the institution’s point of view.
But Product Companies Are Facing Challenges
A McKinsey report highlights varying growth rates among healthcare service and technology segments, with technology-enabled areas projected to proliferate compared to traditional sectors. While this report emphasizes the US-demographic, the case for technological penetration in the Indian healthcare landscape also rings true.
In fact, Niti Ayog has previously reported that there are almost 600 investment opportunities in the country’s healthcare sector — a good portion of which are directly associated with tech use-cases.
However, there is intense competition with multiple companies offering innovative solutions. Therefore, product companies need to differentiate their offerings and employ effective marketing strategies to distinguish themselves in the market.
Healthcare institutions and professionals have been slow to adopt technology such as wearables, augmented reality, and AI. A study by Rock Health suggests that people are more trusting of their doctor, health insurer, and pharmacy than tech companies.
This entails product companies to bring their narrative out in the wild so as to let the potential stakeholders understand the value that technology can accrue in the long term. They need to substantiate their digital-first argument by defining the benefits to the healthcare ecosystem — something that’s only possible when they actually connect with relevant people in the industry.
Adoption and User Acceptance
Again, convincing healthcare providers and professionals to adopt and embrace new technologies is an uphill battle. The lack of understanding, adoption, and user acceptance are the barriers that product companies face. As such, they need to demonstrate their products’ value, usability, and clinical efficacy by publicizing them through various methods of digital marketing to gain trust and overcome resistance to change.
Data Security, Privacy, and Regulations
As per the reports released in 2022, around 1.9 million cyberattacks were recorded against the Indian healthcare system. This jarring statistic is enough to warrant healthcare companies to develop solutions with built-in security features.
But while they’re fully capable of such progress — relaying their prowess to the concerned stakeholders remains a challenging prospect. They need a content strategy that can quickly dispel doubts, bolster customer confidence, and encourage adoption.
So, What’s the Way Forward for Healthcare-tech Product Companies?
Surely, the new landscape of healthcare is one that’s driven mainly by technology. A study published in the National Library of Medicine (NLM) found that factors such as perceived usefulness, ease of use, and social influence can influence users’ adoption intention of healthcare technologies.
So, it bodes well for product companies to:
- Build their narratives on top of work they’ve done with medical professionals
- Build relationships with stakeholders on social media platforms such as LinkedIn and Twitter, where they can have more in-depth dialogues
- Begin with a small test group that they can interact with and share feedback regularly to ensure maximum product adoption
- Document their product’s journey to evangelize its value in the market
- Ensure branding consistency to create a strong identity for their products
To lower the entry barrier to the above steps, we have documented a content marketing roadmap for product companies to leverage. Access it here.