Monday, December 2, 2013

You Ignored Your Market. (Part 1 of 2)

It’s perplexing to me how those who designed Obamacare did not accurately evaluate the market they would ultimately have to rely on for its success. The Millennials. 
The creators of this bureaucratic healthcare machine had access to the greatest minds in the areas of marketing, branding, technology, cultural studies and framing the debate. Therefore, it’s befuddling how and why they did not cover all their bases sufficiently to ensure our buy-in.  

The Millennials’ participation in the healthcare exchange is part of the necessary equation to make the system succeed. In a sense, we are the oxygen to the body: without it, the body dies. An article from notes: “…the administration is relying on a number of young people to sign-up for coverage on the Obamacare exchanges to balance costs of older and unhealthy people who enroll.” My question then is - if Millennials are necessary for its full success, is it possible that Millennials lack of buy-in could lead to an end of Obamacare – altogether?
If President Obama and his colleagues did include Millennials in the design stage, they most assuredly did not listen to or implement our suggestions to the project. As this young author highlights, there is a difference between studying Millennials and actually having them at the table for insight and participation, to influence the end product. Judging by the muddy predicament Obamacare is in right now – I’m fairly confident our involvement was disregarded and simply put – not wanted.
Those writing the strategic plan on implementing Obama’s healthcare should have understood these pre-requisites for Millennials. Because these items were not accomplished tells me they really didn’t do their homework:
Millennials need to want healthcare bad enough to take the journey to get it. The lingo of President Obama and his team’s narrative has captured our emotions – i.e. Millennials would say healthcare is a right because everyone should have access to great care. But, to a live-by-the-moment generation, the distance between buying into an emotional talking point and then doing what needs to be done so it comes to fruition is very far between. When it comes time, as it has now, for us to take our emotional buy in (everyone deserves healthcare) and put it into action through a long, tedious process, this requires more of us than we want to give. We have many strengths, but understanding the trajectory implications of buying into a giddy-feel-good talking point is not one of them. Yet.
If healthcare is “given” to everyone that means it impacts the pocket book of a Millennial. But, by our own weakness, we have not counted the long term cost to us that healthcare for “everyone” will require.
This Rare article says: “Bottom line — with an increasingly choked job market, rising health-insurance premiums, compromised personal records and decreased work hours — young Americans want nothing to do with Obama’s spoonful of ‘medicine.’” Aka – we do not want Obamacare.
Millennials need to need healthcare. The President’s team has not convinced us of our own personal “need” for Obamacare. And, who wants something they already have? President Obama’s big government has provided the luxury that Millennials can skirt by on our parents’ insurance until we are 26 years old! Our desire for individualism and freedom from our parents is not that great that we’ll take on an un-necessary burden to pay for our own healthcare! President Obama is trying to sell us something we frankly don’t need. (And for the Millennials who are over this age bracket? Consider all the other points in this piece to explain their dis-interest.)
Millennials are health conscience via natural means, not through health insurance. We are more likely to be in good health because of our youth, but also because of our own personal interest and responsibility. 

This generation is working hard to be very aware of our bodies and strive to live healthier lifestyles including working hard to eat healthier (i.e. changing to gluten free diets, eating organic etc.). Marketing executives and restaurant management with Subway and Tim Hortons for example, understand they must tweak their approach, the options on the menu, the portion size – if they are going to solicit our business.

With those trying to “sell” us government healthcare, it’s as though they are trying to convince us we should make a winter coat, when in reality we live year round in tropical paradise. Their idea is illogical!