High TechFebruary 28, 2020

Personalization in Healthcare, a Global Perspective

In an effort to understand how consumers view personalization, including how they…
Avatar Irma Rastegayeva

In an effort to understand how consumers view personalization, including how they define it, how important it is to them, and what they are willing to give up in order to achieve it, Dassault Systèmes commissioned CITE Research to carry out a global online Personalization Survey of 3,000 adults across 3 countries: United States, France, and China, with 1,000 participants from each country. The survey explores how consumers view personalization in four categories: transportation and mobility, healthcare and life sciences, retail and the environment, their city and home.

In this post, I will summarize survey results as they apply to Healthcare.

You can also listen to a live audio broadcast from CES 2020, where Evan Kirstel and I discuss the survey results while at the Dassault Systemes’ Media Event.

Consumers are excited about personalization

84% of consumers surveyed said they want personalization in products and services, and they want it now. From the 3,000 people surveyed globally, Healthcare generated the highest interest (87%) when it comes to products and services personalization. The second-highest category of interest was Retail, with 85%.

It’s important to note that the other 3 categories of interest identified in the survey — City with 78%, Mobility with 76% and Home with 74% — are closely connected to the Healthcare category. We live such interconnected lives these days with many technologies converging. Many new smart homes, mobility and smart city solutions are aiming to address growing population health challenges, individual chronic health conditions, aging in place goals, monitoring and caregiving challenges, and more.

The specific areas of personalization that generated the most interest were products designed to:

  • Fit the body (87%)
  • Enable notifications in time-sensitive home emergencies (87%)
  • Send location to police during times of safety concerns (84%)
  • Broadcast crime alerts based on location (82%)

Additional top-ranking products and services included personalized preventative health plans based on behavior (81%) and alert systems for falls (80%).

Younger generations lead the personalization push

Not surprisingly, the survey had identified a generation divide between different generations. 91% of Gen Z, 93% of Millennials, and 89% of Gen X said personalization is very or somewhat important. Younger consumers are more likely to say personalization is important now and is also enticing in the future. Younger consumers are more likely to be interested in personalization for every industry and for many specific products/services.

Younger consumers have a clear understanding of how personalization will benefit them and are more likely to expect benefits of personalization generally, and benefits of personalization by industry. They are also more likely to agree that personalization saves them time, saves them money, and makes them feel safer.

As a result, younger consumers are willing to pay more for personalized products and services.

The most important benefits of personalization

Consumers see better products, improved quality of life, and safety as the most important benefits of personalization. These benefits cut across industries and most converge on health-related concerns. For example, “living with better health” and “faster transit times” are contributors to improved wellbeing and quality of life. When consumers express interest in better safety in their environment and mobility, that feeling of safety is connected to their mental health and physical wellbeing. Younger consumers are more likely to express interest in the environmental benefits of personalization, such as energy efficiency and lower emissions.

What are we willing to give up?

Nearly all consumers are willing to share some or all of their data in exchange for personalized services. In Healthcare, the highest number of people (22%) were willing to share all data compared to other sectors. And 61% of people were willing to share some data. It makes sense, as when it comes to health, the stakes are arguably the highest, so people might take on higher risk with their data in hopes of better outcomes. When asked about sharing anonymized data, 60% of consumers say they’d be more willing to do it.

Younger consumers, more accustomed to sharing their data as part of their daily lives, are more likely to say they are willing to share all their data for personalization in each industry.

Concerns about data sharing and management remain

Despite relatively optimistic survey responses about personal data sharing, data concerns remain top-of-mind, with expectations that demands and regulations will help properly protect consumer data.

91% of consumers want to know what data is being collected before sharing it for a personalized experience. 88% would discontinue a helpful personalized product/service if they were unsure of what was being collected or how it was being managed. Only 4% of consumers globally are not concerned with data security.

Consumers expect data protection to happen through: consumer demands (68%), global regulation (61%) and local standards (56%).

What is personalization?

Despite strong preferences and desire for personalization, consumers still can’t clearly define it. People are mixed as to whether it is products/services selected from a list of options, products/services they customize before purchasing, or products/services based on personal data. This creates an opportunity for the industry to define personalization for consumers.

The majority of consumers across regions say personalization in products and services is important, with those in China being especially likely to say it is very important. French consumers are significantly less likely than other regions to associate personalization with the usage of personal data. Early tech adopters are especially likely to say personalization uses personal data (63%).

How much are we willing to pay?

Consumers are willing to share data, especially if it’s anonymized. They will pay more for personalization (on average 25.3% more), but also expect savings (an average of 25.6%) if they provide personal data to achieve that personalization.

This cost/benefit is an area where preferences vary by geography. The US consumers are willing to pay significantly more (28%), while those in China expect to save significantly less (22.9%). The groups willing to pay the most are: Early tech adopters (36.7%), Gen Zers (30.5%), Millennials (29.6%), those with children in the household (29.5%), car owners (26.8%), and Generation Xers (25.1%). These groups also expect to save significantly more than other segments.

What’s technology got to do with it?

In order to achieve personalization, many different technologies are necessary, especially for health care. About half of consumers globally believe AI, 5G and Home Assistants are necessary for personalized products/services to be delivered for consumers. 50% of consumers think 5G is very necessary for the delivery of personalization in health care. While it is seen as less vital in retail, for example, 76% of global consumers still say it is necessary (very or somewhat).

French consumers think 5G is very necessary for personalization in healthcare, home and city, and transportation and mobility, while American and Chinese consumers are more likely to see 5G as vital for every industry.

Watch the Consumer Survey video from CES 2020.

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