US consumers are turning to the Internet, even more so thantheir doctors, to research health information, according to a report fromdigital marketing company iCrossing.
According to the analysis, 59% of a group of 1,084 adult menand women surveyed said they used the Internet as a resource for health andwellness-related info, while 55% said they consulted with their physicians.
The report, How America Searches: Health and Wellness, wasconducted by The Opinion Research Corporation, an infoUSA research andconsulting firm, for iCrossing in December.
Although consumers prefer the Net for research, docs arestill the most trusted source of health info, the survey found. When asked toidentify the top three sources they trusted the most, 77% of consumers citedtheir primary care physicians, 55% their specialist physicians, and 37% theirnurses or nurse practitioners. Only 24% listed the Internet as a top trustedsource.
“Pharma marketers ought to consider channelsthat they hadn’t before—most particularly search engines,” added iCrossing VPof strategy Noah Elkin. According to Elkin, general search engines dominateconsumer research.