The traditional means by which pharmaceutical companies engaged with healthcare providers (HCPs), such as sales representatives, medical conferences, and dinner meetings, have become less effective for a variety of reasons. HCPs are busier than ever, treating an increasing number of patients and spending more time with insurance providers. Their busy schedules simply don’t allow for significant time each day trying to stay on top of new advances in clinical medicine, including information on drug therapies from pharma. HCPs are also reporting that they often find minimal value in the content available on pharma websites and rarely consult them for clinical guidance. This has resulted in pharmaceutical firms increasing their use of digital means to connect with target HCPs.
The need for effective marketing campaigns to bridge the communication gap between pharma/biotech brands and HCPs led to the launch of BioPharm Communications nearly 15 years ago. Over this timeframe, BioPharm has collected data on HCP behavior through more than 1,500 successful marketing campaigns with over 20 million HCP interactions each year and created their Insights 360° database. Key information in this database includes HCP prescribing behavior, affiliations with health systems, and medical insurance coverage for their patients. The database also includes proprietary behavioral information on over 1 million US-based HCPs, including the most effective channels to reach them through and which messages they engage with most often. This enables creation of target HCP microsegments for personalization of BioPharm’s omnichannel campaigns. Jeff Persinger, President & CEO of BioPharm Communications, stated that “BioPharm delivers omnichannel marketing services and solutions to our clients by developing content that is highly relevant to HCPs, and delivering this content through channels with which they have a demonstrated history of strong engagement. In addition, we provide this content through a portfolio of proprietary tools with high HCP recognition and perceived clinical value.”
The next step is to then develop an engagement plan utilizing BioPharm’s various trusted third-party brands to complement and reinforce first-party campaigns coming directly from the pharma sponsor. Jeff Persinger said that “this is an important contributor to campaign success, as research has shown that 3 of 4 HCPs are more likely to engage in content that comes from a known and trusted source.” BioPharm Communications recognizes that different approaches to omnichannel marketing are required depending on the current stage of the brand in the product life cycle. For example, brand promotion and awareness are critical during product launch. Once this step is achieved, HCPs then need to understand clinical attributes of the sponsor’s drug and appropriate patient selection. This can be best reinforced by use of a medical expert in developing content for use in BioPharm’s third-party opinion-leader solutions. Persinger cited research that “over 80% of HCPs are more likely to prescribe a new drug if it’s endorsed by a clinical expert.”
Once content has been developed, BioPharm then utilizes up to 7 different channels to create personalized journeys for HCP microsegments based on their channel affinity obtained through the proprietary Insights 360° database. BioPharm has a sophisticated CRM platform that delivers business-rules–based dynamic journeys, triggered campaigns, and integration between non-personal promotion and personal selling. “All our programs are delivered across multiple digital and print channels, leveraging our sophisticated marketing automation platform,” adds Persinger.
With the landscape undergoing constant transformation, BioPharm Communications is continuously developing new solutions to cater to the changing needs of the clients. The company strives to keep up with the trends in the ecosystem by looking to enhance the channels used to connect with HCPs, placing increasing focus on social, video, programmatic display, and voice channels. BioPharm’s clients reap significant benefits for their brands through campaign engagement by HCPs and campaign ROI well in excess of industry benchmarks.