Years ago, healthcare marketing interactions were limited to face-to-face communication. Personal meetings in hospital offices and lunches in fancy restaurants were the order of the day. But all of that has changed recently, as you’re likely aware.
Access to doctors is now highly restricted, and they no longer meet with most salespeople or marketers. More than 53% of physician outreach now takes place digitally or indirectly — through email, mobile alerts, direct mail, and other mediums. This creates an opportunity for healthcare marketers to create conversations and deliver high-impact engagement with physicians across multiple channels.
Even with a robust digital marketing plan in place, many healthcare marketers still struggle with the question of scale. How do you grow your physician customer base and evolve your marketing along with them? The answer is marketing automation.
Buying cycles in the healthcare and life sciences industry are long, which means customer relationships need to be long-term. Marketing automation allows marketers to continually send content to prospects and customers while measuring and adjusting campaigns based on data — giving you everything you need to find success as you scale.
Follow these five steps to make the most of marketing automation for healthcare and scale your physician outreach:
MAKE YOUR CRM YOUR SOURCE OF TRUTH
You may already be using customer relationship management (CRM) software to manage your databases of physicians and other healthcare clients. To effectively scale your audience, it’s essential for your marketing technology to be able to sync with your CRM quickly and effortlessly, no matter the size or amount of data being moved around.
Syncing to your CRM provides you with real-time data that feeds into a single aligned data set, which is what you need in order to scale. If you’re working with multiple separate data sets across multiple platforms that aren’t synced, it’s impossible for sales and marketing to be fully aligned.
When all of your data connected, it becomes simple for you to manage all of your account information and easy for your sales reps to follow up with correct information and relevant offers.
TAKE A PERSONALIZED, ACCOUNT-BASED APPROACH
When you take an account-based marketing (ABM) approach, you treat your highest-value accounts as markets of their own. A successful ABM approach starts with being account-first, building your strategy around the account information in your CRM.
In healthcare marketing, your highest-value accounts likely include individual healthcare professionals (HCPs) as well as members of value analysis committees (VACs) at healthcare organizations. Often, VAC members are the gatekeepers to one-on-one access to physicians and other HCPs. It’s essential for marketers to build strong relationships with VAC members in order to earn their buy-in.
That’s where ABM comes in. To develop an ABM strategy for physician outreach, begin by identifying the top accounts you’d like to go after and analyzing the information you already have about these accounts in your CRM. From there, research the key influencers at your targeted healthcare organizations and segment these influencers based on the characteristics you want to target.
After you’ve identified the accounts you want to focus your marketing on, you can tailor campaign content to them throughout their customer journeys.
SCALE YOUR OUTREACH WITH AUTOMATION
To get the most out of your account-based marketing strategy, you will need marketing automation technology. To handle an ever-increasing number of physician prospects and customer relationships, it’s important to use a platform with substantial computing power and an intuitive user interface.
As you scale, you’ll need to store many different records and content assets, and manage various automation settings that tailor messaging to your audiences. User-friendly UI is a must when it comes to organizing and handling all of this digital material. You’ll need to be able to trust that your team can easily navigate your marketing automation platform and that all automations will run reliably.
Automation can engage your audiences with ongoing nurture campaigns, which allow you to continuously educate physicians and keep your brand top-of-mind with them. Intelligent lead nurturing adapts to your audience based who they are and the actions they take. For example, if one of your leads is a cardiologist at Scripps Health in San Diego, your marketing automation platform can send them down a nurture path customized for cardiology in that area.
EMPOWER YOUR SALES TEAM WITH ACTIONABLE INSIGHTS
Whether you’re a pharma rep, medical device rep, or physician liaison, you need actionable insights that let you know when to engage with leads, and with what content. Artificial intelligence can predictively score leads, track their activity history, and give you alerts that tell you the right time to reach out — as well as the right messages to reach out with.
Through advanced reporting and analytics, AI can also tell your team which physicians are engaged with your outreach, what could be changed about current campaigns, and how to reach out to new leads next. This data can help you deliver increasingly connected customer journeys, which 71% of healthcare marketing leaders say positively impact revenue growth.
UNLOCK SCALE WITH MARKETING AUTOMATION AND ABM
With industry-leading processing power, speed, and reliability — as well as complete integration with other Salesforce technologies — Pardot is an easy-to-use marketing automation platform that can scale with any B2B enterprise, healthcare or otherwise.
For more ways to scale your healthcare marketing and physician outreach, read our e-book The Healthcare and Life Sciences Guide to Account-Based Marketing: A Prescription for Successful Client Relationships.