Flu Shot: Yes or No?

Is your drug not selling at your ideal level? Wondering how to boost sales?  New research suggests that using physician prompts via electronic health records (EHRs) could significantly increase the number of flu vaccinations given. 

In this study, scientists used EHRs to notify physicians when a patient was eligible for a flu shot.  These prompts encourage physicians to discuss flu shots with patients by asking them to mark “yes” or “no” for the patient’s decision.  As a result, flu vaccinations increased 6% at the clinic in this study.  Compared to the previous year, this is a 37% relative increase in flu shots.  This method works by changing the choice architecture and adding a level of active, emotional engagement to the decision-making process.

What is the current choice architecture surrounding your drug? Hypothetically, choice architecture should have no impact on a completely rational individual, but behaviour science tells us that real people are anything but rational.  What can you do to make behaviour change easier?  Remember the details matter, and the answer to increasing sales might be as simple as asking a “yes” or “no” question.