While regular readers already know that persons turn to trusted in-person as well as virtual "friends" and "communities" for health care advice (past DMCB posts on the topic are here and here ), the DMCB may have underestimated the full implications of just how real and behavior-changing an on-line relationship can be.
No, the DMCB is not suggesting that PHM vendors start hot chatting with clients.
But it is saying that vendors as well as buyers who discount "remote" web-enabled and text coaching versus in-person services may need to take another look at their future business plans and underlying value propositions. Maci and Kyle's dysfunction are teaching us that remote texting has far more "connectedness" potential than generally appreciated. If a social-media-based relationship's downsides can capture Maci and Kyle's attention, why can't the upsides also be harnessed to change behavior?
We have a lot more to learn about the determinants of on-line relationship building. Companies that figure it out will win.