Thursday, January 19, 2006

Manhattan Research: The Top Physician and Consumer eHealth Marketing Trends of 2006

Manhattan Research: The Top Physician and Consumer eHealth Marketing Trends of 2006

The Top Physician and Consumer eHealth Marketing Trends of 2006 Manhattan Research to Host Webinar on February 1, Revealing Insights into the Year Ahead

NEW YORK, January 17, 2006-- Manhattan Research, a healthcare marketing information and services firm, today revealed the top trends for ehealth marketers to consider in 2006. The insights are based on comprehensive research studies conducted in the U.S. and in Europe over the past ten years. These market trends will be discussed in a free webinar on February 1st at 2:00pm (EST), and attendees will receive The Year Ahead: eHealth Marketing Trends in 2006 (details below).

1. Search Engines Essential for Physicians and Gateway for Consumers One of the most dramatic shifts in online behavior of consumers and physicians is the increasing reliance on search engines as a primary means of locating health information online. On a trended basis, consumers were 30% more likely to begin their online health session with a search engine than by going directly to a known website.

2. Broadband Explosion Revolutionizes the Way Consumers and Physicians Use the Internet For the first time, the number of consumers with a broadband connection exceeds those with a dial-up connection -- a trend which has paved the way for interactive applications such as games and online video to become a mainstream part of the online experience. The increase in broadband connections -- 31% over the past year -- also had far-reaching effects on the amount of time consumers spend online, as well as the frequency of Internet use.

3. "Alternative" Media Is No Longer Alternative With online video, blogs and podcasts gaining popularity at an exponential rate, information sources previously considered "alternative" are quickly becoming mainstream, with more than 61 million U.S. adults participating in one of these activities today. The number of consumers relying on these information sources is expected to experience double-digit growth in 2006, making them part of the "everyday" media consumption of the average consumer.

4. Prescription Product Websites Become Viable Destinations A select group of product sites, including those for Lipitor, Allegra, Zoloft, Nexium, Wellbutrin, Ambien and Viagra, are generating annual traffic of at least 2 million visitors. In fact, many of these high-profile products now generate several times the traffic on their websites as in their 800-number call centers. Product sites are emerging as robust information sources for patients and physicians alike -- often in response to advertisements seen offline.

5. Europe Untapped -- Above Average Growth Potential for Engaging European Physicians Despite the fact that the vast majority of European physicians are online for more than five hours per week, they have yet to adopt more advanced professional activities that have become commonplace among U.S. physicians. However, this lagging adoption is not necessarily a function of lack of interest, but rather a lack of offerings.

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MEDIA CONTACT: Erica Alexander Manhattan Research, LLC 212.255.7799

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