Anyone who works in healthcare knows how busy healthcare professionals (HCPs) are, which is why the secret to any successful HCP marketing strategy is understanding how to capture—and keep—the attention of these busy professionals.
To do that, however, you need to have an effective B2B marketing strategy. Here’s how to develop the best HCP marketing strategy possible.
Segment your audiences.
Before doing anything else, you need to segment your audiences. A message that works for one HCP will not necessarily work for another, so you need to break down, into as much detail as possible, who you’re trying to reach and what their needs are.
To do this, you need the following information:
- What kind of HCP are they? Physician, physical therapist, etc.?
- Who do they serve? (Consider demographic information like age and income level.)
- Where are they located? (Location-based segmentation is essential in B2B healthcare marketing.)
- Where do they work, and who owns that space? Are they in private practice or contracted with a regional hospital system? Perhaps both?
You can determine this by asking your sales and customer service teams; using content offers to gather information; conducting surveys with current and former customers; making educated guesses.
Once you’ve developed profiles (buyer personas) based on this information, you can segment your audiences. To do this, ask yourself:
- What kinds of purchasing decisions are they making?
- What products and services would help make conducting business and/or serving patients easier?
- Where are they in the buyer’s journey? Are they doing preliminary research or ready to buy?
Personalized content is king.
Just as segmentation will help you understand your audience, it’s also helpful for creating perhaps the most important piece of your marketing strategy: personalized content. This means content that is targeted based on buyer personas, what kind of HCPs you’re talking to (and, by extension, what products they’re most likely interested in), and their position in the buyer’s journey.
According to the San Francisco-based software company Salesforce, personalization is essential to effectively converting prospects into customers; almost 75 percent of buyers expect it.
Segmentation allows you to target prospects with content specific to their needs, pain points, and where they are in the buyer’s journey. The better you can showcase your understanding of your prospects’ lives and needs, the more likely they are to become customers.
For example: Say you’re targeting physical therapists who run their own private practices. You want to use language that acknowledges how busy they are not only performing the duties of an physical therapist but as a business owner. Additionally, you should send them content and marketing materials related to topical pain medications and therapeutic tools. You could even further personalize your offerings by sending ebooks, infographics and other downloadable pieces based on their position in the buyer’s journey (e.g., for a prospect who is in the decision stage, offer a free consultation with one of your sales reps).
To recap, the most effective content highlights how well you understand each and every prospect. Also, the more personalized your content, the more willing they will be to believe you can solve their problems.
Use digital marketing as much as possible.
Digital marketing makes all the difference in a B2B strategy: 72 percent of B2B buyers in the healthcare space start with online searches. That means you can capture a lot of prospects just by having a robust online presence and leveraging digital and email marketing.
Here’s what we mean.
You should have an easy-to-navigate website populated with relevant, helpful content for people at all stages of the buyer’s journey that’s optimized for search so potential prospects can find you. Make yourself an easy-to-use, trusted resource, and prospects will be more likely to think of you when it comes to making buying decisions.
Email marketing is one of the most effective tools you have in your B2B healthcare marketing toolkit, and it’s also one of the best ways to leverage personalized content. You can put your products and services right in front of prospects’ eyes instead of making them search for it.
Depending on the scale of your marketing efforts, you can do one-to-one emailing or broader campaigns, and use emails for all stages of the buyer’s journey, including to remain in contact with customers and continue fostering a positive relationship to increase the chances they’ll buy from you again and recommend you to other companies.
Be sure to use segmentation and personalization to send the right email to the right HCP.
Want to learn even more about crafting the strongest emails for your marketing campaigns? Download our free Email Guidelines and Best Practice Suggestions Ebook.
Mailers make up for sales reps’ reduced access to physicians.
Direct mail is one of the most effective forms of marketing in the B2B space, especially when it comes to healthcare. Where once, sales representatives were a mainstay of B2B healthcare sales, their access to physicians and other HCPs, “rep-accessible” HCPs have shrunk from 80 percent of HCPs in 2008 to just 44 percent in 2017.
As sales representatives’ access to physicians shrinks and the digital space remains competitive, direct marketing is still an essential piece of the HCP marketing puzzle.
Direct mailers have a high ROI—higher than paid advertisements, according to marketing thought-leader Neil Patel. So not only can you target specific HCPs (rather than, say, taking out ads in trade publications and possibly targeting the wrong location or practice type), but your message will be more effective.