Pharmaceutical companies today face greater challenges to gain and maintain leads among healthcare professionals. Increased market competition, the rise of specialized pharmaceuticals, the rise of niche focuses among physicians and advancements in technology mean marketers and data managers within this industry should go above and beyond to make meaningful contact with professionals within the medical world.
Another issue pharmaceutical companies must address to increase their sales and conversions with healthcare professionals is physician confidence. Econsultancy shared data from Deloitte that showed there is a significant trust gap between pharmaceutical companies and people working in healthcare. More specifically, the data revealed 75 percent of physicians do not trust the information provided to them by those marketers.
This in mind, pharmaceutical companies can begin to fill the trust gap by finding new ways to legitimize their messages and interactions with providers.
Healthy relationships start with data
Effective marketing and strong lead generation both start with good data. Regardless of the medium – medical email marketing, social media or online advertising – healthcare professionals will respond with hesitance if data isn’t a key part of strategy development. The role of data in good marketing is very apparent. By leveraging strong and managing their databases using data cleansing services, marketers can ensure they are reaching the right doctors with the right information. As a result, marketing efforts are more targeted and effective.
Beyond that, however, is the challenge of trust-building. Pharmaceutical companies that use high-quality, organized data to analyze potential leads and deliver them information they need before they even ask for it are better positioned to earn trust. According to a study conducted by EY and Forbes Insights, more than 81 percent of CMOs believe data and analytics will be an important tool with which to build and measure trust. For example, survey participants noted they used data to measure their effectiveness with delivering their brand promise based on customer interactions and perceptions.
With good data, pharmaceuticals have the opportunity to take a closer look at the interactions with healthcare professionals, engage with them on a more human level and remain sensitive to their very specific needs and interests. Further, insightful data combined with effective lead nurturing can help pharmaceutical companies gain a deeper understanding about how both patients and providers perceive their products, and optimize their marketing efforts based on this information.
Choose value over quantity
Medical professionals today are more likely to trust pharmaceutical companies that have the best interest of their practice and patients in mind. However, the reality is that practitioners are inundated with marketing and educational material at a near constant basis each day, which is exacerbated by their heavy workload. Pharmaceutical companies can break through the noise and earn the trust of their target leads by delivering marketing content that is more valuable than promotional, and more focused on quality than quantity.
For example, the HealthLink Dimensions white paper “Breaking Through The Noise” outlined a handful of key areas medical professionals value most, including industry news, product updates, research and educational opportunities, and patient education materials. Pharmaceutical companies can go above and beyond to deliver high-quality content to potential or existing leads by conducting qualitative and quantitative research surrounding physicians’ interests, needs and patients. Through this extra effort, pharmaceutical marketers can show healthcare professionals they are invested in their unique needs as well as improving the lives of their patients.
“Pharmaceutical companies can go above and beyond to deliver content to leads.”
Trust requires a multichannel approach
Gone are the days when marketers in the life sciences industry could rely on cold calls, direct mail and office drop-ins to make a sale. Today, building trust with physicians is largely dependent on a company’s presence and activity across multiple digital channels. Physicians are now heavily active on mobile devices throughout their workdays and even turn to social media for pharma-specific information.
According to the Deloitte study, over 52 percent of physicians surveyed expressed interest in interacting with pharmaceutical companies through social media. More specifically, doctors hope to leverage these channels to gain information surrounding drug efficacy and outcome data, clinical guidelines and other factors that ultimately influence their drug utilization decisions.
Pharmaceutical companies can deliver valuable, data-driven marketing content to medical professionals by engaging with them across all channels. Not only does it indicate transparency, it ensures the practitioners will see the message on the platform where they are already participating in dialogue. In order to effectively reach this audience, marketers must work to create a seamless experience across all platforms including medical email marketing, social media, digital ads and even in-person interactions.