Doctors tend to hear from patients when medications fail, not when they work. But hearing positive feedback can sometimes
be just as valuable. Doctors want to know that the drugs they prescribe produce positive outcomes and boost compliance. Yet,
many have little information about the efficacy of these drugs because they don't have time to follow up with each patient
and track their progress. Without reinforcement of their prescription decisions, doctors may feel less certain about their
choices and more open to trying a different script on their next patient. But marketers can change this mindset of uncertainty
by validating physicians' prescribing habits. By presenting doctors with positive feedback from their patient pools, marketers
can help boost doctors' script-writing confidence, and help shape their brand preferences.
Positive Patient Input Counts
Patient data represents a powerful marketing tool, especially when the data is customized. Instead of presenting generic clinical
trials evidence, marketers can now offer data from a doctor's own patient population, collected through electronic surveys.
In these surveys, marketers ask patients specific questions about relief of symptoms, ease and convenience of use, and drug
productivity. Armed with this data, reps can incorporate the results of these surveys into the detailing process. Not only
does this personalize the often impersonal detailing experience, but it also helps marketers increase their chances of creating
positive brand impressions.
Avelox Patient Experience Program
The survey results go into a linked database of information about the participating patients and physicians. Every time a
patient inputs information, the doctor automatically receives a report. If the doctor sees that the patient is struggling
with compliance, he or she can follow up with the patient by phone. The data can be repurposed for additional uses:
- Market research Physicians and their patients develop an understanding of the medication experience they've shared, allowing insight into
the choices and beliefs that each party made with regard to the product.
- Patient education The database provides a vehicle for educating both patients and physicians about which educational messages were delivered
- Compliance/Loyalty For compliance and loyalty, continued brand-use follow-up surveys of patients provide notifications of brand termination
and inform physicians about their patient's treatment stoppage, thereby allowing the physician to intervene when appropriate.
- Outcomes studies Unified patient-experience marketing allows researchers to have precise information about new patient starts, length of continuous
use, and insight into product use. This information can be exceedingly difficult to gather without access to electronic medical
records and claims datasets.
Beyond these areas, the collected patient-experience data can be repurposed for use in specialty conferences and journals.
The data can also support abstracts, poster presentations, and manuscripts.
This marketing strategy can also benefit patients. They take comfort in knowing that their doctor is monitoring their compliance
with the medicaiton. They also tend to appreciate the increased communication with their doctor. As a result, they spread
the word to other patients about their positive experiences with a particular prescription.
Ironically, most of the economic benefits that result from higher script writing are actually conferred by patients unassociated
with the program. Marketers know this phenomenon as the "spillover effect," or the positive change in prescribing that results
from impressions generated from one patient "spilling over" to other similar patients in that physician's practice.