Pharmaceutical brands had their sales staff grounded during the COVID-19 pandemic. As a result, marketers within those organizations - which had primarily focused on in-person communications to reach physicians - were forced to swiftly shift to a digital approach.
During this period, pharma marketers experienced a greater ROI for marketing initiatives by implementing campaigns on endemic networks and Point of Care platforms to better connect with physicians. Currently, 48% of U.S. physicians are treating patients via telehealth platforms, which has risen drastically since 2018, when it was only utilized by 18% of physicians.
eMarketer reported that spending on digital advertising in the healthcare and pharmaceutical industry grew in 2020 up to 9.53 billion dollars. So, pharma marketers can raise their ROI on campaigns by turning to endemic and Point of Care platforms as the adoption of digital mediums usher in the new normal for physician marketing.
Take advantage of real-time audience insights to optimize digital campaigns
Digital marketing for physicians was once a black box marketing approach — with data only being available at the end of a campaign. To raise ROI of a campaign, marketers need to know what is and isn’t having an impact in the midst of marketing efforts.
Now, pharma marketers can utilize real-time analytics to their advantage to measure the efficiency of campaigns. Instead of having to wait for the results at the end of in-person efforts, marketers have the capabilities to identify areas of effectiveness and just as importantly, ineffectiveness, to better allocate funds during the course of marketing initiatives. With the solutions to measure the engagement, along with identifying the messages that are resonating most with physicians, pharmaceutical brands are able to drive the ROI of a marketing investment. Further, if a telehealth medium is garnering more traction with physicians compared to the messages displayed via a physician networking platform, then as the engagement rate becomes unfavorable, the resources can be allotted towards the more impressionable outlet to garner greater traction for the campaign.
Assess contextual relevance when placing physician marketing messages
Choosing the digital platform is crucial for the success of a marketing campaign. After all, a message being sent to a physician during their personal time while they are sharing a family moment on Facebook or online shopping, hinder the impact of those messages. Physicians are simply not in the mindset to receive and engage with the messaging and additional medical-related messages that may benefit their patients during their personal time. The impact of sharing physician-centric messages is thus higher via endemic and Point of Care networks — EHR, online medical journals and telehealth channels — when physicians are conducting professional activities. Upon entering these online portals, it is signifying to marketers that physicians are in the medical mindset and messages can be shared at opportune moments messages with the help of AI-enabled solutions about the latest products, treatment or to raise awareness about a disease.
Showcase hyper-personalized messages on telehealth platforms
With telehealth projected to reach 175 billion dollars by 2026, pharmaceutical brands will continue to strongly devote resources towards physician marketing via endemic outlets. Telehealth platforms have become the new normal with patients gravitating towards digital communications with physicians. Now, pharma marketers are tasked with a digital medium that has the physician’s attention while documenting, diagnosing and prescribing the patient. While chatting with a patient, a message can be shown on the screen during the discussion without disrupting the physician, and a physician can be shown a video message while waiting for a patient to join the channel for their consultation. Most importantly, hyper-personalized messages need to be delivered in order to have content that resonates with the physician to achieve the maximum impact. Messages during patient exchanges should be educational and not interactive. In Point of Care networks, pharmaceutical brands should deliver their communications to physicians that don’t require interactive clicks that lead them to another screen. The value of telehealth messages instills the ability to raise awareness with physicians in the moment to best advise the patient.
Digital physician marketing campaigns will continue to evolve following behaviours that physicians adopted during the pandemic. With marketing solutions available for brands to better understand physicians in real-time, pharma organizations can pursue new technologies that will elevate their messages within endemic and Point of Care platforms. The adoption of endemic networks across digital mediums has altered physician marketing for pharmaceutical brands and will advance the way data analytics are leveraged by marketers to receive the highest levels of engagement during campaigns.