Case STudies


For ResMed, a health care company specializing in respiratory devices such as CPAP machines, the pandemic forced customers to learn how to use the machines virtually—a complicated process that had previously required an in-person clinical interaction. Today, said Christen Chavez, ResMed’s vice president of product marketing, during COVID in some markets 50% of therapy setup was done virtually. Yet that number tailed off as the pandemic slowed, however—not because the instruction was unclear but because the follow-on was complicated and uncoordinated. “Something that is virtual should be more convenient, but it can actually take more work for the patient and care provider,” she said. For example, the care provider must deal with the complexity of communications and messaging platforms and find out which service a patient will use—whether it’s Zoom or another platform.

This realization has shifted ResMed’s investment focus to more of what Chavez called “virtual pathways.” She said, “We realized the connectedness between these types of solutions that we’re developing is so important … potentially more important than the actual value of [an individual] point solution.” It turns out that there’s a lot more to the virtual customer experience than simply the interaction with the product. If the system doesn’t support the patient experience, it won’t work—which in ResMed’s case can have serious health implications.

As a result, said Chavez, ResMed is considering how care providers “think about something that used to be a single visit or encounter with a patient and spreading that out into an onboarding experience”—providing information before the visit and support after they leave. At the same time, ResMed is serving patients in a more personalized way; they can choose whether to come into the clinic or use the online instruction modules. “There’s been no negative impact on the level of patient service.”


Just 10 years ago, animal health company Zoetis used to do two-thirds of its business supporting farm animals and one-third for pets, and today the reverse is true based on increased pet adoptions and innovative new products. Although the pace of adoptions has slowed as people have returned to more normal work behaviors, the focus on the pet—and its health—has not changed. “There’s been this trend over time where the humanization … of pets is even more pronounced,” said Wetteny Joseph, EVP and chief financial officer. This is also a global trend. “[People] have a different view of what a pet means and what role it plays in their lives,” he said. Even as vet visits have come down since their height during the pandemic, he said, “What people are spending on a per-visit basis is up significantly.”

To address the growing demand for more products to improve a pet’s health, Zoetis has boosted its R&D spending to its highest level. Joseph cited a recent study Zoetis conducted in which people said they would maintain spending on their pet at the same rate, even if their budget decreased by 20%. Today, Zoetis’ dramatic shift to focus on pets is having a big effect on its innovations going forward.


Why do people lease cars, but own all their other household technology? It’s an area that’s ripe for innovation, when you think about it. To appeal to younger consumers’ desire to have the latest and greatest technology but also support sustainable practices, Best Buy Canada launched a subscription model experiment for laptops earlier this year. Said Polly Tracey, chief communications and public affairs officer, “This is about building a relationship with the customer. If technology is such a big part of your life, Best Buy becomes your tech partner.”

The marketing emphasizes saying “goodbye to FOMO forever” and offers a cost below that of owning the laptop, the ability to trade in at the end of the term, and a promise to refurbish or recycle the old device. For now, customers must do their trade-ins in a store because it’s an easier way to gather information. “Our advisors in stores are a massive part of the process; they tell us what customers want and what they want to sell,” Tracey said. The company is also experimenting with online marketing, pushing information about the subscription to customers browsing for laptops. “We’re very encouraged by the response—and uptake—by our customers and we’re expanding the program even faster than our original plans.”

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