4 Pitfalls of Traditional Healthcare Market Research… And How Virtual Solutions Solve Them

If the past few years have proven anything, it’s that healthcare is an increasingly important need in our society. We’ve leaned on doctors, pharmaceutical companies, and researchers to deliver the medicines and devices we need to remain healthy and prevent future illness.

While these groups have continuously delivered revolutionary medicines and care in record time, methods for researching these products and services in the market are stuck in the past.

This blog will explore four ways traditional research methods fall short for healthcare marketers and how today’s agile research solutions address the pitfalls of traditional methods.

Why should you conduct healthcare market research?

Conducting healthcare market research can help you tailor your marketing messages, gain a deeper understanding of the patient experience, test medical devices before they reach the wider market, and more. Whether you’re part of a hospital, a pharmaceutical company, or another member of the healthcare community, patient and healthcare professional insights are vital. Speaking directly to doctors and patients can help you to make better medical products, create better drugs, and overall improve doctor and patient experiences.  

Where traditional market research falls short

Traditional research methods fall short when it comes to healthcare. Here’s how:

  • Traditional research methods are time-consuming and inefficient. Today, most healthcare market research is conducted in smaller-scale groups or in one-on-one interviews. Conducting in-depth interviews (IDIs) on a one-by-one basis can be tedious. You need to conduct several interviews to gather information from doctors and it’s difficult to gather more than a few healthcare professionals or specialists in one group in person at the same time. What’s more, once you have the information you need, you must piece it together to gather insight. 
  • Current video methods of conducting research can pose security risks. Conducting focus groups or interviews over video conferencing software, the phone, or telehealth tools can pose security risks. Patient privacy is of the utmost importance, so conducting research in this way can potentially be risky. 
  • Doctors and patients can be difficult to recruit for research. Doctors have only a small amount of time in their days to dedicate to something other than their jobs. That makes it difficult to recruit them for research. If you’re conducting research for a particular group of doctors like cardiologists or surgeons, recruits can be even tougher. Patients, too, can be reluctant to share information about the difficulties they face. Because of this, they may be hesitant to participate in research.
  • Smaller-scale research can skew results. Traditional, in-person research conducted through IDIs, surveys, and focus groups can often only be conducted on a smaller scale. It’s difficult, if not impossible, to gather large groups of doctors — especially those focused on specific types of medicine — in one room at one time for research. Gathering a sufficient number of patients with a rare illness, for example, can also be limiting. 

How virtual research solutions address common obstacles

Luckily for today’s healthcare marketers, agile research solutions like Invoke’s address the common pitfalls of traditional research. Here’s how:

  • Virtual research solutions enable greater patient and healthcare professional privacy. Privacy is a top priority for healthcare professionals and their patients. Virtual solutions like Invoke’s have stringent privacy measures built into the system. This addresses the privacy concerns doctors and patients commonly voice.
  • Virtual solutions bolster flexibility, enabling a better experience for researchers and harder-to-reach recruits. As mentioned before, doctors are busy people. They’re notoriously tougher to reach and recruit for research projects than the general population. Research conducted asynchronously directly addresses this concern by enabling doctors, patients, and other participants to take part in research during their own time. Asynchronous research sessions stay open for a period of time, allowing respondents to log in and answer questions when it best suits them.
  • Online research tools cut down the time needed to gather meaningful research insights. By using virtual research tools to conduct your healthcare research, you cut down the time it takes to gather insights from your target market significantly. Gathering people in person to interview them or conduct a focus group takes time and resources. Virtual tools significantly cut down the amount of time and resources needed to conduct research. 
  • Conducting research online enables unprecedented scale. Difficult-to-reach recruits become far more efficient and scalable when they’re conducted online. The space-related obstacles that typically hinder in-person research are completely eliminated when the recruit and research are both conducted virtually. This allows you to gather more participants for your sessions at once.

Conduct fast, conclusive healthcare research with Invoke

If you’re looking to conduct innovative healthcare research that will help you gain a deeper understanding of patients and healthcare professionals and their needs, look no further than Invoke. Our proprietary research platform provides companies and teams with the insights they need to make fast, consumer-driven decisions at scale. What’s more, cutting down the number of research sessions you must conduct and eliminating space-related constraints and resources significantly cuts the amount of spend you need for research projects.

Interested in learning more? Request a demo to speak with our experienced team today.

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