Unlike Medical Device, Digital Health is a more trendy vertical because it is, by nature, a B2C one. It is easier to sell a service or a product when you sell it directly to patients and it is less of a challenge to develop strong communities of patients and caregivers for a digital product. Everyone today carries around at least one small computer in the palm of their hand (the smartphone) but usually also a tablet and sometimes a laptop. We are connected to everything, anywhere, at all times.
In that sense a digital health company that is wise enough to recognize where its potential communities are and empower that connection of the members to one another and to services, will be a winning one.
Some of the challenges most Digital health companies encounter are:
- Determining their initial market segment or niche – so it is not too broad or competitive yet not too small to damage profitability
- Planning the digital product correctly – UI/UX is crucial to these companies and often they skip this part or “save it for later” because they haven’t enough funding yet. When is the right time to invest in design? How much and why?
- Building a marketing strategy that is long term enough and strong enough to stand above the noise in the hodgepodge of digital products (any!) out there. So many digital products that were not meant to be medical take on medical market segments because there is a need. How do you convey to the patients that yours is a real solution to their ailment?
- Connection to hardware – many digital health entrepreneurs find out after they develop their product that it will not work unless connected to hardware, such as a wearable (or will work better with it) – how do you foresee these requirements before you spend a lot of time and money on a product that doesn’t work well or at all? In other words – how do you improve your chances for product – market fit?
- Finding partners – for a digital health product to be successful it can never stand alone. At the very least it has to be easy and affordable to use by the patients, but the whole point of such products and services is the connectivity and access to caregivers, knowledge, treatment… without partners to provide these added values to the patient community, your product will not soar. How do you find these partners? Which community is the first one your should build? the patients/users, or the partners?
There are more challenges but listing them all will not help you overcome them (though talking to us might!) 🙂
Over the years we’ve been working with and consulting for digital health products for various ailments (Behavioral and habit changes, Sleep monitoring, Autism, Stuttering, Fitness, wellness, nutrition and more).