Bolder Thinking Blog

eHealth ramped up national TV advertising for AEP

December 9th, 2020 | Nicole Bond

eHealth doubled down on its national TV advertising as the 2020 AEP got underway, increasing its investment by more than 700% from September to November. This marked the highest national TV spend for the aggregator in 2020, with its investment outperforming any previous month by at least $1.5M.

With the AEP at its peak, eHealth prioritized daytime and early morning programs to be sure to reach its Medicare-eligible audience. Research shows adults aged 50+ spent at least five hours per day watching TV — with the bulk of their viewing happening during the daytime hours.

Prioritizing this daypart is a cost effective strategy, since daytime programs are less costly than primetime while still amplifying the aggregator’s name out there for an older audience during their peak viewing hours.

In display ads, eHealth further emphasized ease of comparability as a key tenant of its service, touting a Medicare plan “that’s right for you.” Navigating Medicare is no easy feat; offering transparency, simplicity, and a multitude of options during the selection process is a key differentiator for the aggregator.

Source: Comperemedia Omni

In an emotionally charged TV ad, eHealth layered vivid imagery of 2020 challenges as it urged viewers to explore their Medicare options for 2021. 

The aggregator continued to address the difficult year in Facebook ads as it promoted ease and peace of mind to a wider audience. With distinct imagery and tone, eHealth went beyond Medicare as it promoted its services to a seemingly younger audience as open enrollment approached.

What we think 

Simplifying the Medicare selection process should bode well for those able to follow through. When it comes to Medicare, navigating the abundance of options and weighing the benefits of various plans can be no easy, or enjoyable, task. According to Mintel’s research, only 19% of Baby Boomers have researched Medicare health insurance coverage, leaving a large number of eligible consumers in the dark or unable to grasp the benefits of plan research. Aggregators should remind beneficiaries of the possibility of better options, proving the value in comparison. 

To gain traction with the Medicare audience, they should consider: 

  • Mixing up the messaging: Add a sense of variety to messages by finding different ways to show, not tell, one’s added value, instead of bombarding consumers with redundant, generic claims. 
  • Maximizing relevance: Ensure marketing resonates with the Medicare-eligible audience, making them feel seen and understood on mediums they are comfortable with and trust.
Nicole Bond

Nicole Bond

Nicole Bond is a Senior Research Analyst, interpreting cross-channel marketing and consumers trend with a focus in telecom and financial services. Nicole also has a Master's in Integrated Marketing Communications from Northwestern University, contributing to her passion for identifying consumer drivers and helping clients develop omnichannel marketing strategies.