Forget the Old Adage of 'An Apple Day Keeps the Doctor Away' -- Today's Consumer Wants an App

Well-th: Ketchum's Health and Wellness Trends Report Unveils People's Growing Reliance on Technology for Health and Wellness Advice

WASHINGTON, July 19, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- The American consumer's approach to personal health and wellness is constantly adapting and, along with many other aspects of life today, technology is becoming the main influencer. The inaugural Well-th: Ketchum's Health and Wellness Trends Report revealed a paradigm shift – it concludes that people are looking more to the tools and technologies they regularly use for information and personal guidance and then seeking healthcare providers and advisors for "second opinions" to validate their own conclusions.

"People rely on technology today to manage their health and well-being, and this behavior has become pivotal to prevention maintenance and treatment decisions," said Leslie Schrader, partner and director of Ketchum's Washington, D.C., Brand and Marketing Practice. "For companies, brands and communicators to be relevant and meaningful, it's imperative they curate content and tools that reach people where they intersect with technology and health and wellness so they are well-informed when they meet with their healthcare providers."

Ketchum's Well-Connected specialty – a communications team with brand, food and health experience – developed Well-th to pinpoint health and wellness drivers and identify key trends. First revealed at the Marketing to Women in Health and Wellness conference (M2W-HC), the trends show how people make personal decisions and identify ways to help companies successfully engage them with health and wellness products and messages that fill their needs.

Among the report's findings, health and well-being will continue to be a strong individual-driven pursuit for the foreseeable future. This year's Well-th report insights highlight:

  • Public shifting from a "self-help" to "self-health" mindset. Today's consumer is actively seeking information on the Internet to diagnose and even treat medical conditions. Physicians are becoming the second step in the health journey; rather than delivering the initial diagnosis, they are confirming or reviewing information patients bring to them. Brands with a health offering have an opportunity to be a trusted resource and engage consumers at the beginning of their wellness pursuits.
  • Instead of an apple a day, it's now an "app a day" – or 10 a day – as health apps may increase from 9,000 to 13,000 in this year alone, according to MobiHealthNews. From games to useful information tools, brands and wellness organizations can harness the power of mobile and create touch points to deliver valuable messages to consumers whenever and wherever they are in their search for health and wellness information.
  • Social health will be the new frontier as consumers continue moving to social networks and online communities for diagnosis, support, information and treatment recommendations. In this age of "social wellness," like-minded people are sharing their personal health experiences. Brands can become involved with communities or foster new ones by creating easy and useful spaces for consumers.

"Consumer products – those at the crossroads between mass retail consumer goods and pharma – are catalysts of growth for 2012 and beyond," said Kelley Skoloda, partner and director of Ketchum's Global Brand Marketing Practice. "Our Well-Connected specialty area helps brands and companies capitalize on the trends and tell compelling stories that create consumer opt-in."

Well-th: Ketchum's Health and Wellness Trend Report is distributed by Ketchum's Well-Connected team in conjunction with Ketchum Global Research & Analytics and Ketchum Digital, and includes unique insights from Now Plus One.

About Ketchum

Ketchum is a leading global communications firm with operations in more than 70 countries across six continents. Named 2012 Agency of the Year (PRWeek) and the winner of an unprecedented three consecutive PRWeek Campaign of the Year Awards, Ketchum partners with clients to deliver strategic programming, game-changing creative and measurable results that build brands and reputations. For more information on Ketchum, a part of Diversified Agency Services, a division of Omnicom Group Inc., visit www.ketchum.com.

About Diversified Agency Services

Diversified Agency Services (DAS), a division of Omnicom Group Inc. (NYSE:OMC) (www.omnicomgroup.com), manages Omnicom's holdings in a variety of marketing communications disciplines. DAS includes over 200 companies, which operate through a combination of networks and regional organizations, serving international and local clients through more than 700 offices in 71 countries.

About Omnicom Group Inc.

Omnicom Group Inc. (www.omnicomgroup.com) is a leading global marketing and corporate communications company. Omnicom's branded networks and numerous specialty firms provide advertising, strategic media planning and buying, digital and interactive marketing, direct and promotional marketing, public relations and other specialty communications services to over 5,000 clients in more than 100 countries.

About Now Plus One

A creative research collective, Now Plus One uses its culturally-immersive methodologies to engage, challenge, and inspire client teams while uncovering key insights and developing on-trend innovation output. Since the agency's inception in 2006, Now Plus One has developed trend-driven projects for major brand clients, as well as through retainer partnerships with leading communications agencies. The agency's highly experiential offerings include Trend Treks, Insight Immersions, Expert Sessions, Consumer Sessions, and Innovation Labs. For more information on Now Plus One, visit www.nowplusone.com.

SOURCE Ketchum

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