Hearing Healthcare, Our Demographic Are Not Online, The Lie Put To Bed

Senior Internet stats, how they shape up and why you should look at your online marketing strategy

Demographics_of_internet_users_USA

When I speak to people in our industry, I hear consistently “Well our demographic aren’t online really”. I have one word to say to that, Bunkum, here’s a second, Balderdash! Only this is a family blog there would be other more interesting words.

I present, to the left, thanks to Pew Research Center, the survey stats of internet users in the United States. I would like to point your attention to the age demographics results. 91% of individuals between 30 and 49 are active on the internet. These are the children of your prospective Patients.

77% of adults aged between 50 and 64 are online, these people should be viewed as your long term prospects. In fact some of them are your prospective Patients right now. 53% of 65 year old and plus use the internet. These are your prospects and your Patients. 53% ladies and gentlemen, theoretically you have the opportunity to reach 53% of your prime target market via the internet. So, don’t you think that it is time that everyone in Healthcare, not just Hearing Healthcare, have a look at their online marketing strategy? 

Who are we kidding here, your prime demographic is online, they are online and they are active. But lets go one step further, what are they doing online? Back to Pew:   

Internet activities (all)      
According to our February 2012 survey, 80% of American adults use the internet. Here are some of the things they do online:
       

 

% internet users who do this

Survey Month

Survey date (approximate)

Use a search engine to find information

91

February 2012

01/02/2012

Send or read e-mail

91

August 2011

01/08/2011

Look for info on a hobby or interest

84

August 2011

01/08/2011

Search for a map or driving directions

84

August 2011

01/08/2011

Check the weather

81

May 2010

01/05/2010

Look for health/medical info~

80

September 2010

01/09/2010

Look for information online about a service or product you are thinking of buying*

78

September 2010

01/09/2010

Get news

76

May 2011

01/05/2011

Go online just for fun or to pass the time

74

August 2011

01/08/2011

Buy a product

71

May 2011

01/05/2011

Watch a video on a video-sharing site like YouTube or Vimeo

71

May 2011

01/05/2011

Search for info about someone you know or might meet*

69

September 2009

01/09/2009

Look for “how-to,” “do-it-yourself” or repair information 

68

August 2011

01/08/2011

Visit a local, state or federal government website*

67

May 2011

01/05/2011

Use an online social networking site like MySpace, Facebook or LinkedIn.com*

66

February 2012

01/02/2012

Buy or make a reservation for travel 

65

May 2011

01/05/2011

Do any banking online

61

May 2011

01/05/2011

Look online for news or information about politics*

61

August 2011

01/08/2011

Look online for info about a job*

56

May 2011

01/05/2011

Look for information on Wikipedia

53

May 2010

01/05/2010

Use online classified ads or sites like Craigslist

53

May 2010

01/05/2010

Get news or information about sports* 

52

January 2010

01/01/2010

Take a virtual tour of a location online

52

August 2011

01/08/2011

Do any type of research for your job

51

March 2007

01/03/2007

Upload photos to a website so you can share them with others online

46

November 2010

01/11/2010

Send instant messages

46

December 2010

01/12/2010

Pay to access or download digital content online*

43

August 2008

01/08/2008

Look for info about a place to live*

39

August 2006

01/08/2006

Download music files to your computer

37

December 2007

01/12/2007

Get financial info online, such as stock quotes or mortgage interest rates 

37

May 2010

01/05/2010

Rate a product, service or person using an online rating system

37

May 2011

01/05/2011

Play online games*

36

September 2010

01/09/2010

Categorize or tag online content like a photo, news story or blog post

33

December 2008

01/12/2008

Read someone else’s online journal or blog^*

32

May 2010

01/05/2010

Look for religious/spiritual info

32

September 2010

01/09/2010

Post a comment or review online about a product you bought or a service you received

32

September 2009

01/09/2009

Post comments to an online news group, website, blog or photo site

32

September 2010

01/09/2010

Share something online that you created yourself

30

September 2010

01/09/2010

Research your family’s history or genealogy online*

27

September 2009

01/09/2009

Download video files to your computer 

27

December 2007

01/12/2007

Participate in an online auction

26

September 2010

01/09/2010

Make a donation to a charity online

25

May 2011

01/05/2011

Make a phone call online, using a service such as Skype or Vonage

25

August 2011

01/08/2011

Participate in an online discussion, a listserv, or other online group forum that helps people with personal issues or health problems*

22

December 2006

01/12/2006

Download a podcast so you can listen to it or view it later*

21

September 2010

01/09/2010

View live images online of a remote location or person, using a webcam

17

September 2009

01/09/2009

Use Twitter

15

February 2012

01/02/2012

Create or work on web pages or blogs for others, including friends, groups you belong to, or for work

15

September 2009

01/09/2009

Take material you find online—like songs, text or images—and remix it into your own artistic creation

15

May 2008

01/05/2008

Download or share files using peer-to-peer file-sharing networks, such as BitTorrent or LimeWire

15

August 2006

01/08/2006

Sell something online

15

September 2009

01/09/2009

Create or work on your own webpage

15

January 2010

01/01/2010

Create or work on your own online journal or blog*

14

May 2011

01/05/2011

Buy or sell stocks, bonds, or mutual funds

11

September 2009

01/09/2009

Use an online dating website*

8

September 2009

01/09/2009

Visit virtual worlds such as Second Life

4

September 2009

01/09/2009

 Irish_Internet_statistics

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Source: Pew Internet & American Life Project Tracking surveys (March 2000 – February 2012). Please note that the wording for some items has been abbreviated. For full question wording, please refer to the questionnaire.

While this list contains many of the activities the Pew Internet Project has asked about, it is not a comprehensive list. For a complete list of our activity tracking since 2000 please refer to the Usage Over Time spreadsheet.

* Item wording has changed slightly over time for the items marked with a single asterisk. Please see questionnaires for question wording.
~Based on a series of questions about specific health topics.

Last updated: February 2012

     

About Geoffrey Cooling

my name is Geoffrey Cooling and I am the author here at Just Audiology Stuff. I have been involved in the Hearing Healthcare Profession for several years now. I initially worked as a Hearing Healthcare Professional for a large national retailer in Ireland. After several years in Practice I was approached to work for a manufacturer, where I was employed for five years. I am now the Co Founder of a business called Audiology Engine. We design websites, undertake content marketing and generally look after everything digital for audiological practices. I am also a contributor to many hearing profession periodicals and websites. I have written two commercially available books, The Little Book of Hearing Aids which is written for hearing aid consumers and Audiology Marketing in a Digital World which is written for Audiology Practice Owners. They are both available in Paperback and Kindle versions on Amazon. I also write for consumers on the website Hearing Aid Know, which is a website with the mission of demystifying hearing aids, their types and their technology. I have a great interest in commercial strategy as it applies to Healthcare in general and specifically to Hearing Healthcare. I also have a great interest in the psychology of sales and human interaction. I have been involved with social media for some time, both personally and professionally. I find the engagement and discourse on some social media channels fascinating. I instituted social media strategy for the company I worked for as an experiment. That experiment soon spread throughout the company and I am proud to say that the company is probably one of the most active in the industry. I would like to point out that all views, opinions and thoughts here are mine own. Unless of course they have been planted by the pod people, you just can’t take your eyes off the pod people. Those views do not necessarily reflect upon any views or opinions held by my employer, if I ever get another one. I think that our industry is in the middle of a time of huge change, I think that the change will be forced by both internal and external pressure. I think that private Independent Healthcare Practices will have to be smart and lithe of feet in order to meet these changes. I hope that some of my blatherings are of benefit to those Practices, Independent Hearing Healthcare Practices need to survive. I believe that if that occurs it will be of real benefit to Patients. I hope that I, and my writings will play a small part in their continued success.

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