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Over the past decade, approaches to pharma marketing have made significant swings—from “content is king,” an over-reliance on digital, a scramble for big data, and the exclusion of effective channels because physician-level data (PLD) aren’t available. Despite these significant swings, true omnichannel marketing yielding the highest return has been a constant.
Marketing is a conversation aimed at changing knowledge, attitudes, and behavior. Omnichannel uses data and channel variance to orchestrate storytelling and focuses on user experience. It aims to meet the user’s need for relevance and utility and increases the overall impact of marketing efforts.
Nonetheless, omnichannel plans can be too often heavily weighted with tactics providing reach at low cost and returning PLD. This hyper focus on PLD and efficiency tends to omit proven channels that have greater impact. This “efficiency model” has pushed marketers to focus on line-item channel performance versus the overall impact of a campaign. We’re trained to look at the “parts” of a campaign, for example, open rates of an individual email, and use them as guidepost for campaign success rather than seeing the sum of the parts.
As marketers, it’s important we reset our beliefs on what good looks like
No single channel can accomplish the reach and depth of engagement needed to deliver true impact. A well-designed campaign should look like an investment portfolio; an effective, balanced mix designed to drive return and manage risk. How healthcare providers (HCPs) engage with marketing is similar in concept and underscores the importance of channel mix. Some HCPs are high email engagers, others prefer print, and still others are heavy users of videos and websites. Similarly, some HCPs engage with sales representatives, and some do not. It’s important to understand the value and limitation of each channel.
Channel variance is a critical component of omnichannel marketing. True omnichannel campaigns are designed using data to determine targeting, spend levels, messaging, and varied channels with coordinated delivery. Feeding promotional response data into client sales force automation systems, like Veeva, to drive appropriate action by sales representatives integrates all channels. In fact, in a client-provided ROI, it was demonstrated that when an HCP engaged with non-personal promotion that was followed-up, in proximity, to personal promotion activity, the ROI of each effort increased compared to non-coordinated activities.
Creating an HCP Impact ScoreTM
Measuring omnichannel requires us to look past line-item channel performance. Reporting and optimization should be organized to help demonstrate the value of each tactic. This can be done through an HCP Impact Score™. In this model, each tactic is assigned a value based on message and depth of engagement to determine a total “achievable score.” The greater the channel variance, the higher the achievable score becomes. As the assets push into market and HCPs engage, each tactic engagement is scored and weighted. At the end of the campaign, the total value of engagements is measured against total targets to provide the “earned score” achieved. Experience has demonstrated that higher HCP Impact Scores are an effective leading indicator of ROI.
As we work to address the need for more advanced omnichannel efforts, it’s important that we anchor on the concept of having meaningful conversations that drive changes in behavior. We can accomplish this by using data and channel variance to orchestrate storytelling and focus on user experience. Equally as important is breaking the habit of viewing the performance of a single channel as a success indicator of our campaigns. We should be measuring the impact of the total campaign on the HCP, appropriately across all channels, with a focus on proving that we changed their behavior. If this approach isn’t included in your plan, it might be time to revisit your omnichannel strategy.
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