Medical Education: Surround Sound Marketing - Pharmaceutical Executive


Medical Education: Surround Sound Marketing
Look to product promotion tactics to increase share of voice.

Pharmaceutical Executive

Be creative. Given the volume of invitations that doctors receive in the mail and under their door at medical meetings, marketers should think about different ways to make their invitations stand out. Don't just direct mail invitations. Polybag them with well-read medical journals or, as brand marketers do, advertise in those journals. Companies may also decide to have reps hand out invitations that contain CDs that connect to the internet and offer video highlights of the program. After all, it gives reps a way to get the information into physicians' hands, even if they're not interested in attending the meeting.

Share of Voice In addition to examining the marketing mix, executives can increase share of voice by changing one or more of the following variables:

Donna Wolff
Product. Make sure that programs provide maximum value to the target audience. The best programs integrate traditional and innovative approaches to deliver content healthcare professionals want to know about.

It's important to "gut check" the med ed initiatives by asking the following questions:
  • Is this educational program providing maximum value to the customer?
  • Is it different, interactive, and engaging?
  • Is the information that's being presented new and compelling?
  • Are there great speakers that people are eager to listen to?

Price. Most med ed marketers can't reduce the price of their programs—they're already free for healthcare professional attendees. However, they can increase the value proposition to customers to make their "freebie" feel more important and worthwhile. Companies can start that process by infusing value into each piece of promotion. For example, an e-mail invitation can link to a registration site that can contains information physicians may be interested in, such as reprints of journal articles by the med ed faculty or a sample of slides that will be presented.

Distribution. It's not only about how many people are in the seats on the day of the meeting, but how companies broaden the reach of the information presented to a virtual audience. For instance, companies can now use e.serts—an advertisement that has an embedded CD that can be polybagged or bound into medical journals—and webcasts to get symposia proceedings to as many people as possible.

What many companies don't realize is that they should leverage their strong commercial expertise in promoting their med ed programs. Doing so can make all the difference.

Awards Advanced Health Media ranks 238 on the Inc. 500, a list of the nation's fastest-growing private companies. " Deloitte & Touche named Medsite one its Fast 50. The e-pharma marketer is the 28th fastest-growing tech company in the metro New York area. Photosound Communications won eight IN-AWE Medical Marketing Association Awards.

Launches Advanstar Medical Economics will provide CME content to Albert Einstein College of Medicine, New York state's largest CME accreditor. Ethecol Institute will obtain research on med ed efficacy from partner Outcomes. HMP Communications acquired MultiMedia Healthcare/Freedom. Medsite launched the Medsite Education Group, an online med ed (CME) division. Pri-Med initiated Pri-Med Online, a no-cost source for CME activities. ProCE's in-flight CME program, Inflight CE, has taken off.

People WentzMiller added associates Edwin Borman, John Kelly, MD, PhD, and Charles Baker. Brian Carlock was named senior vice-president, design director at GHG Advertising. Medsn added Tony Coughlan, Tom Doorley, Mike LoPresti, and Andrea Magda as area vice-presidents. The Center for Advanced Medical Education promoted Paul DeLisle to president and named Kathleen Ingalls, PharmD senior vice-president, medical. Mary Elizabeth James joins MEDCON as vice-president, client services. Michael Nielsen is AAF-MED's new national sales director. Health Learning Systems named Stacey Singer president and promoted Gisela Paulsen to general manager. Scientific Frontiers appointed Barbara Stafford CEO, Wilson King vice-president, strategic program development/medical services, and Katherine Mann, PharmD, vice-president, medical services & strategic development. Donna Wolf becomes executive vice-president, scientific and strategic services at Summit Grey.


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