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People-based Marketing in Healthcare: How to Shift to More Personal HCP Experiences

At first glance, digital healthcare and pharmaceutical marketing might appear to be a few years behind the technology curve. In truth, it’s progressed rapidly in the past 10 years. With today’s fundamental shift away from rep-led engagements, digital communications are dominating our multi-channel marketing landscape.

The health industry might be lacking in overall digital maturity, but it’s making up for it with a willingness to explore newer formats and ways of connecting. Never before have health marketers had such a great opportunity to refocus and improve on how to connect with healthcare professionals and their patients. Additionally, there’s now a way to build a new communication model that has the potential to connect with key customers and foster greater levels of trust in the process.

Build a more connected and personal model

Today, marketing agencies are converging with technology and data agencies to include greater levels of customer centricity in marketing efforts and improve on the engagements we deliver in the process. Advances in data collection and management are enabling us to deliver more personal experiences for customers in the form of communications that can be tailored specifically to the needs of individuals, not just market segments — and that’s where things get even more exciting.

The more we know about individual health professionals and their behaviors, the more we’re able to craft customized marketing experiences and messaging that resonates with them — increasing the propensity for engagement.

Reaching your target audience

People-based marketing (PBM) is a holistic approach to managing marketing interactions to known individuals with a focus on maximizing customer lifetime value. With the precision to move beyond cookies to real people, PBM represents the future of audience addressability, personalized experiences, and brand loyalty over time. It’s from this strategy that we can begin to address and overcome the lack of engagement we’ve seen in previous CRM models.

And for an industry already inundated with impersonal and irrelevant communications, the ability to deliver far more personalized and relevant content comes as a very real and refreshing change.  

What this means for healthcare and pharma brand managers is the ability to break through the communications clutter and move beyond one-size-fits-all communications and one-way, disconnected communication streams to deliver relevant and timely content.

Ensuring for rep-centric connections in the customer journey

As new CRM models are designed, they can be applied to ensure a more rep-centric approach to augment and support existing relationships.

Let’s take a look at what this might look like in practice. For example, in the rollout of a new high-tech, high-touch therapy, medical team training is a common necessity that requires sales rep contact and orchestration. Incorporating triggered events into CRM tactics, such as rep contact reminders about training opportunities, can be essential to a successful launch. We can also track physicians’ online behavior across branded sites, display ads, social media, and other media channels. Once behavior is identified, triggered communications prompt the physician to reach out to their rep with questions, schedule a visit, or coordinate with their practice on training events.

The ability to support the relationship with content that HCPs need and with connections that feel increasingly personal can help build credibility and trust over time. And as healthcare manufacturers seek to establish genuine and lasting value for the entire industry, people-based marketing can elevate the perception of your sales reps as working in far more consultative partnership roles for the physicians they serve.

If you’re interested in learning more about how to implement personalization into your marketing strategy, request to join us at our annual Health Executive Exchange on February 22-23, 2018 in Sarasota, Florida. Or, you can view our on-demand webinar with Google’s Danielle Bulger titled “Personalization is Now: Providing Utility to Win Moments that Matter.”