Integrating Payers Into Your Digital Communication Plan

Brand Insights - Thought Leadership from Marketers I Paid Program

An evolving system requires a focus on digital channels

Payer marketing efforts are designed to influence physician prescribing patterns by conveying product value to payers, thereby securing a product’s desired access. Until recently, the healthcare ecosystem was thought to consist only of the patient and the provider. But the reality is that healthcare is a complex system of interrelated stakeholders working together to drive patient outcomes at an appropriate cost.

Delivering the right message

Within the access community, organizations are consolidating across diversified business lines. Some of this is expected, such as the formation of large joint payer and pharmacy benefit manager (PBM) enterprises, while other consolidation is more unusual, such as payers and health systems partnering with trade and distribution entities. Furthermore, large regional health systems can exert access control by leveraging their relationships with payers in a given geography. Organized customer groups, clinical pathway organizations, and professional societies can also exert significant control over access to therapies, depending on the disease state or product. As the system goes through this period of consolidation, identifying the key stakeholders and delivering the right messages to those who control access via the channels they engage with requires an evolved approach.

Delivering the right message to a variety of stakeholders who control access, particularly at launch, has never been more important.

Personalizing digital engagements

While digital engagement is not a new form of payer communication, it is more important now than ever before. A study by the Decision Resources Group surveyed 189 pharmacy and therapeutics committee members at hospitals, integrated delivery networks, PBMs, and managed care organizations. Respondents reported spending more than three hours per day accessing digital resources to inform their committee work, and 80% of respondents stated they prefer using digital sources of information to offline tools when making formulary placement decisions.1

Payers are engaged and comfortable with digital channels, and COVID-19 has only accelerated the number of digital interactions in healthcare as well as the importance of digital engagement.

It is imperative that payer marketers strategically develop their digital outreach, tailor it to the individual stakeholder, and define clear metrics for these interactions.

Integration is key

Integration of key data across healthcare system stakeholders can drive valuable insights about patient care and help tailor your digital message.

Additionally, given that payer marketers must frequently target the same healthcare providers as brand marketers in the consolidated market, the new ecosystem requires complex orchestration to select channels and tailored content that speaks to the needs of each stakeholder to effectively drive a value-based marketing strategy.

Digital marketing to payers—especially when a manufacturer understands that those data and impressions are linked to the insights captured from omnichannel marketing to providers and patients—is the only way to develop a 360-degree view of the brand across the entire value chain.

1. Decision Resources Group (2017). Multichannel Payer Marketing. https://bit.ly/2PEL0Ls