Firms need to step up to drive lasting impact in healthcare e-commerce in Asia | Healthcare Asia Magazine
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Firms need to step up to drive lasting impact in healthcare e-commerce in Asia

Shift to a proactive digital-first mindset is a must for healthcare and wellness brands.

Brands and marketers will have to step up their game to capture the huge potential in the booming healthcare e-commerce industry in Asia, according to service provider Ogilvy Health Asia.

Companies need to step up their game in product-oriented healthcare rather than having a service-focused only strategy to improve convenience and accessibility to care, Ogilvy said 

In a recent report, Ogilvy said the region’s consumer health industry rose dramatically with the rise of e-commerce during the pandemic and the transformative change has just begun. Online sales of consumer health products are expected to grow double by 2025 and consumers are willing to pay a premium for the right product.

“This represents a huge opportunity for healthcare brands but one fraught with challenges,” said Pierre Robinet, president at Ogilvy. “Health marketers must reassess their approach and brands must shift to a proactive digital-first mindset.”

For instance, companies can widen their offerings from purely services to product-oriented healthcare by adding medication delivery options to online consultations. 

Having a “continuous commerce” is also crucial in creating a seamless buying experience for consumers. Firms can do this by maintaining social platforms, hiring service agents and even leveraging AI chat platforms. 

While major e-commerce platforms like Lazada and Shopee are not the go-to healthcare marketplaces for most consumers, they can be pivotal for companies expanding their reach so having an effective operating model to leverage these platforms is key, according to Ogilvy.

It said adopting direct-to-consumer models are also particularly important for health and wellbeing brands to add value to their offerings.

Lastly, it noted that capitalising on the wide reach of social media influencers can help brands spread awareness and boost sales so it is important to have the right persons as “virtual storefronts” for brands.

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