With sales reps grounded due to the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic and access to physicians more limited than ever before, direct mail and email marketing are essential to your pharmaceutical marketing success—but your campaign will do little to move the needle if you don’t target properly.
According to the healthcare nonprofit Kaiser Family Foundation, there are currently just more than 1 million practicing physicians in the United States, with about half of those being specialists. Each and every one of them is increasingly busy.
There are two forms of targeting that will make your campaign successful: pre-deployment segmentation, which determines who you’ll deploy to; and content targeting, which encompasses what channels you use to reach your audience.
Segmentation: The More Specific, The Better
When segmenting, consider the end goal of proving your product’s value to prescribing physicians. You wouldn’t send mailers about a new blood pressure drug to a podiatrist, of course, but segmentation goes beyond specialty. One of the key segments you need to pay attention to is prescribing behavior. When it comes to HCPs, the past is the present—and future: Prior prescribing behavior is one of the best indicators of future prescribing behavior, and therefore, one of the most important segmentations in your campaign.
Leveraging Claims Data
Prescription data is essential for your segmentation strategy, but of equal importance is claims data. Taking a look at the billing codes submitted to payers by HCPs and pharmacists alike will give you a broader picture of important psychographic information, including how willing they are to try new therapies and tests (and therefore, most likely, their willingness to try new medications).
Access to nearly real-time data on product attitudes and openness to early adoption will tell you who your target HCPs’ patients are, what medical conditions HCPs are testing and treating for, and whether or not now is the right time to target certain HCPs—or if you need to wait to deploy your messaging until the market is more familiar with your new product.
Content targeting will get your well-segmented campaign noticed.
We have told you this before, but it bears repeating: It’s not enough to have a well-segmented campaign. You need to know how to reach those segments you’re targeting.
Just as different people prefer varying forms of contact in their personal lives—texts, phone calls, or in-person meetings—so do HCPs when it comes to marketing communications. One segmentation you should have for any list is their preferred methods of contact.
Using a data-driven, multi-channel approach to HCP marketing has been shown to significantly increase your ROI. That means your deployment tactics are just as important as your segmentation.
Combine digital and traditional methods such as email and direct mail with the data you have on your targets—how they like to be targeted, for example—to more accurately target HCPs.
Utilize the best HCP email marketing lists by researching firms that adhere to industry best practices, deploy A/B testing, and track metrics to measure how your campaign performs.
Expanding to traditional channels such as direct mail can further increase ROI and revenue via eye-catching, brand-aligned designs that will make your product memorable to the right HCPs. Direct mail is highly targeted, and as such, will strengthen any well-segmented campaign.