Not long ago in 2005 consumer products giant, and marketing juggernaut, Proctor and Gamble coined a term to describe how consumers were making purchase decisions. The First Moment of Truth described the moment a consumer got to the shelf and stood in front of an array of products. That moment is when P&G determined the consumer decides what to buy. That decision was so important, in the minds of P&G, that they created a Director of First Moment of Truth to oversee store displays, shelf space and in store advertising.
According to P&G shoppers make up their mind about a product in three to seven seconds, this is the FMOT. Preceeding the FMOT was the stimulus for the purchase, typically an advertisement. The 2nd Moment of Truth is when the consumer experiences or uses the product and what they had to say to friends and family about it.
The Zero Moment Of Truth
Fast forward a few short years and everything has changed. Google has recognized a new force at work in consumer decisions of all products and services. The Zero Moment of Truth (ZMOT). ZMOT refers to the time after the stimulus when consumers now go online, or simply pull a smart phone out of their pocket, and read reviews or look for videos about a product, or service. ZMOT has become the most powerful force in buyer decision making today.
The Zero Moment Of Healthcare Truth
Medical practices are subject to these forces as much as any other service or industry. Perhaps more. Although ZMOT may be a term that is new to you the shift in consumer behavior is something you have already been dealing with. Consider this:
- Entire companies have formed to protect physician reputation (reputation.com)
- Influential Drs. are publishing books about protecting your online reputation
- Yelp, Google+Local, Doctoroogle have certainly been popular topics of conversation due to physician reviews
- Patients are going online in droves to research doctors, healthcare
We'll be discussing ZMOT and how it affects your medical practice marketing in a series of blog posts. Some important questions that ZMOT raises include:
- How important are online reviews and reputation and how much do they affect healthcare choices?
- Do patients still give as much authority to the referral from a generalist to a specialist? Or is there much more at play now?
- Where can patients effectively be reached online?
- What are the best ways to reach them?
Weigh in in the comments and let us know if you have seen this change and how you are dealing with it.