The Visual Evolution of eHealth Innovation in Europe

Trends / Technology
Richard Drury
Maxine Ihezie
Apr 22, 2021
Comparing technology visuals used by European Pharma and Healthcare companies today and five years ago shows that they have come along way. The pandemic, demand for patient centric care and purposeful tech have undoubtedly influenced visual communication. We have identified three visual evolution stories, on eHealth innovation for European Pharma and Healthcare brands.
The Rise of Empathy

In the past 5 years, we have seen a visual shift from expertise to empathy.  In the last 12 months alone, customer searches on the Getty Images website for the term ‘Empathy’ grew by 52%, with brands looking to demonstrate an understanding of our shared human experience.
Traditionally in healthcare visuals, brands have focused on using technology within the realm of "expertise", usually by showing a group of medical professionals crowded around a device whilst consulting amongst one another. Fast forward to now, and we see that Covid has created a need for virtual interactions between the doctor and patient. The visualisation of these interactions are through through small device screens that draw attention to the eyes and facial expressions. Telemedicine although more distanced physically, creates more emotional engagement and therefore empathy with the viewer. We see this pattern consistently across European brands as well as Globally.

For more on Empathy, check out this article.
The Rise of Purposeful Innovation

European consumers want purposeful innovation. In our ongoing VGPS survey, nearly 70% of Europeans said there is no point adding technology if it does not add value to their experience. Additionally, one of the top visual preferences that drive European consumers purchasing decisions is seeing the ways a healthcare company fits into people’s lives. However, visualising the purpose and emotional reward of the intangible such as usability and data can be challenging. Five years ago, the dominant visuals for innovation were futuristic and conceptual with lightbulbs, CGI overlays and 1’s and 0’s. Now, we are seeing European Pharma and Healthcare brands show the rewards of data in real life as devices have proved particularly useful during the pandemic – i.e. AI operated chat bots or voice powered assistants.
For more on Visualising AI, check out this article
The Rise of Accessibility

Advances in technology and innovation has meant access to health and health information has expanded past the walls of a doctor’s office. We have seen a visual shift from controlled access, where it was common to see an anonymous doctor with a digital tablet in hand to greater and immediate access and control of our medical information. We now see Pharma and Healthcare brands in the UK, Germany, France, Southern Europe and the Nordics showing a person living with a condition and monitoring and managing their condition remotely. With technology, people are able to access information from a range of sources, including online communities. Technology also means that people living with conditions can conveniently monitor it remotely. In the words of McCann Health, doctors have moved from "linchpin to just another stakeholder ‑ now joining tech and data."
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