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One of the biggest challenges facing health care today is how to target and engage millennials.

Numbered at 71 million, millennials are the fastest growing population in the U.S., exceed Generation X and baby boomers alike, according to a report by the Pew Research Center.

While retail brands successfully engage millennials with personalized, multi-channel marketing, health care continues to struggle to reach this unique demographic.

Unlike older generations, millennial consumers want their health care to be convenient, cost-efficient and consumer-focused.

They want to read online reviews of doctors, make their appointments online and find out what their health plan covers—all with one swipe on their mobile devices.

Millennials also lack loyalty and will switch providers without a second thought.

While understanding consumer behavior and buying decisions are important first steps, health care must find ways to engage millennials in order to lower attrition and create loyal health care consumers. Here are 3 ideas.

1. Create short, snackable content

 

With so much content vying for their attention, finding a way to cut through the noise with clear, engaging content that they can quickly digest is key.

Although images, infographics and blogs can all be effective, video is vital.

According to a 2018 survey by ClearVoice, when video is available and the information in the video is the same as an accompanying article or blog post, four times as many millennials said they prefer to watch the video.

When creating your content marketing strategy and editorial calendar, consider creating video welcome messages, educational videos about health conditions, patient stories and testimonials or physician profiles. The key is to keep it short—between 30 and 60 seconds, the same survey found.

2. Incentivize millennials for taking control of their health

 

According to 2015 study by ZocDoc, 9 in 10 millennials admit they delay or forego preventative care, which could lead to costly hospital admissions and claims.

Offering rewards such as gift cards, cash or premium discounts can be an effective way to get them into the doctor and keep them engaged in their health care.

When UnitedHealth Group implemented Rewards for Health, a plan which gives employees the opportunity to reduce their insurance premiums by up to $1,200 per family per year for having health screenings or achieving certain health goals, the result was improved employee health and $107 million in savings over 3 years.

3. Target millennials with the right channels

 

To improve millennial health care engagement, it’s necessary to use the channels they prefer and are more likely to engage in like email, social media, SMS and apps.

In fact, according to a 2016 joint survey by Salesforce and Harris Poll, 70 percent of millennials would choose a primary care physician who offers a mobile app to book appointments, view health data and pay bills, over one that doesn’t.

 

 

How does your health care organization market to millennials? What has proved effective for you?