In today’s digital world, 64 percent of American adults own a smartphone and 42 percent own a tablet. Mobile app developers identified this growing market and responded by revolutionizing nearly every aspect of life, from paying bills and sharing music to tracking exercise.
And health industry leaders are not far behind.
Compared to 2013, over half of pharmaceutical, biotech, and medical device companies increased their budget for mobile apps that target HCPs, and over three-quarters increased their budget for apps targeting consumers. This, paired with a rapid decrease in budget allocation for printed materials, reflects a drastic shift in the way industry-leading health companies are communicating.
As a human visualization platform that powers custom medical apps, we know that companies shouldn’t just create a mobile application, but they should do it right. Whether you want to update your patient-facing app, or need to revive your clinical training or CME, here are 5 easy ways to make your app more engaging and increase ROI.
#1 Make it visual
Studies show that most people prefer visuals over written text when learning complex, technical information. But don’t start designing with ClipArt just yet.
Studies also show that 3D images increase medical understanding and improve academic performance by 17 percent. Use realistic 3D visuals to enhance your written content. And always provide visual context when introducing new information.
#2 Make it easy to navigate
To increase engagement, use large fonts, plain language, and don’t be afraid of white space. Include headers to keep distinct topics separate and add succinct, informative captions to embedded images.
The U.S. Department of Health & Human Services also recommends:
- Organizing your information in a way that minimizes scrolling and the need for multiple “click-throughs”
- Starting with simple information on the main pages, giving the user the option to navigate for more detail
#3 Make it interactive
Studies show that interactive, realistic simulations improve essential clinical skills such as the handling of instruments and cameras, suturing live tissues, and completing invasive procedures.
To increase learner retention as well as engagement, include explorable models and interactive games or quizzes.
#4 Make it accessible
While your app may not be offered to the general public, make sure it can be easily accessed by the audience you do want.
Recent studies show that the new generation of physicians prefer to access CME and training activities on their electronic devices (laptops, smartphones, and tablets) rather than from printed materials or in-person meetings.
Meet the needs of your users and make your content available any time, any place, on any electronic device.
#5 Don’t forget about the basics
As a medical app, it’s important to draw on what your users already know before introducing any new information.
Make sure your anatomical references are accurate, compelling, and tailored to your audience in order to reduce confusion and increase engagement.
The BioDigital Human Platform has created customized, 3D interactive applications for industry leaders such as Medtronic, Smith & Nephew, Lockheed Martin, and Novartis.