The changes in how we relate to each other brought about by the Covid-19 pandemic have prompted many companies from various economic sectors to accelerate their digital evolution processes. The pharmaceutical industry, of course, has not been the exception, having to rethink its strategy, tactics, and operation to continue contributing to updating the knowledge of health personnel, continue disseminating scientific advances in the industry and, of course, guarantee its growth dynamics.
In a sea of uncertainty, moving from traditional formants to innovative models has been essential to open hybrid spaces and implement alternatives that take the relationship between brands and their audiences to another level.
Digital innovation in the pharmaceutical industry has begun to play a leading role in the sector, initiating a transformation with leaps and bounds.
Transformation of pharmaceutical marketing
The great challenge for pharmaceutical laboratories is to establish a relationship of trust with their audiences. This allows the laboratories to act as credible sources, sharing pertinent and groundbreaking knowledge. Here lies the need for pharmaceutical laboratories to focus efforts on innovation – innovation from a digital perspective through which the creation, consolidation, and communication of digital ecosystems serve the needs of the medical community and the industry.
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In two years, the sector went from lectures and face-to-face medical visits to new and exciting options that today include phygital experiences (physical + digital), among which we can find Holostreaming, Holodisplay, Mappingand Augmented Reality, among others.
Today, it is not enough for the public to see and hear information but also to feel. However, based on the post-covid “new normal,” every experience should not only “feel” real but “be” truly real. For this, the implementation of digital tools is essential.
2020 brought us new communication challenges
2020 brought us pivotal challenges, not only in health and self-care but also in how we relate to each other. Communication changed completely, moving to virtual scenarios where the only window of connection with the world was the screens of electronic devices.
The dissemination of messages, transfer of information, and the interaction between the different audiences was limited by the prevailing need to prevent contagion and stop the increase in cases of Covid-19. However, the pharmaceutical sector turned the crisis into opportunities – finding alternatives that would help healthcare personnel stay up to date on advancements in molecules, treatments, and other scientific developments, which are key in dealing with the pandemic.
Given the impossibility of establishing traditional communication with their medical panels, different pharmaceutical laboratories rethought their tactics, opening the door to truly impressive experiences that would carry a positive message for the industry.
To achieve comprehensive strategies, the use of technology and the different formats was vital for producing an acceptable operational dynamic that would be perfected in the following months. Today, we see the results, with effective and innovative lines of communication between brands and health personnel.
What is the goal of innovation in the pharmaceutical industry?
This new panorama also manifested opportunities to forge an unbreakable bond between science and creativity. Companies once resistant to change were embracing these innovative platforms.
Many companies in the sector rose to the challenge. They created advancements that impacted audiences in a new way while still managing to comply with social distancing. New spaces were created that, in virtuality, raised the need to be increasingly inventive to stand out and gain traction against the competition.
Innovation in this field for the pharmaceutical industry leverages effective positioning. Initiatives associated with omnichannel and multichannel, with different digital formats, create new and differentiated communication mechanisms.
New marketing strategies for the pharmaceutical sector Pharmaceutical
Digital marketing comes from the hand of the CME, Continuing Medical Education, understood as the set of activities that allows health professionals to update their knowledge and train them for the performance of your activities; causing the model to change completely.
Not only is the traditional method no longer used, but digital tools are beginning to be used with virtual scenarios that launch the so-called omnichannel, where various communication channels are activated to reach the target audience.
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We then find e-mailing, landing pages aimed at professionals, e-learning, digital clinical cases, phygital activities, among others, that complement the experiences and generate statistical data on the attendance of the public, their interests, interactions, the time they stay connected to the tools and lets us know if they received the content or not, if they recommended it and how they rated it.
Based on our experience and degree of specialty in the pharmaceutical sector, we consider these five market strategies as the main ones:
· Creation of value content.
· Dynamics of virtual reality and augmented reality.
· Digital assistants with Artificial Intelligence.
· differentiated communication.
· Medical and pharmaceutical influencers
These strategies align to create relevant brand positioning and audience engagement.
Digital Marketing consists of applying various strategies through digital channels to promote a product, brand, or content. Playing an important role in speed, immediacy, social networks, interactions, and dynamism.
Other digital tools have emerged that assist the sales force within the digital plane. Virtual reality and augmented reality are two examples that offer different degrees of interaction and generate a higher level of recall in users.
Although the importance of storytelling has long been used to connect an audience and brand, adding an immersive component leads to more significant customer acquisition and loyalty.
The omnichannel focuses on the customer, with the main objective of satisfying them in the best possible way. Thus, no matter where you are located or through which channel you communicate with our brand, you will not find differences between the different media when interacting with us.
Companies that apply this technique align their messages and objectives across all channels, assigning the same value to each experience and creating an entire ecosystem around the brand. This experience also includes the online and offline environments, enhancing hybrid experiences.
Once implemented, the advantages of omnichannel include:
- The generation of new insights and action plans.
- The collection of customer data in real-time.
- Broader strengthening of the relationship with our products or services.
Digital solutions that adapt to the consumer
Igloolab is the pioneer company in the use of omnichannel marketing for the pharmaceutical industry in Colombia.
For more than a decade, we have changed communication models to involve digital tools and engagement measurement in physical settings, improving the user experience every day.
Our focus is on constant updating and innovation, to provide solutions to the pharmaceutical industry, aligned with what is happening in the international market and its trends. Each of our strategies and contents is preceded by research and studies of international markets, scientific societies, and recognized laboratories, which have allowed us to consolidate a complete portfolio that adapts to each type of consumer.
Our creative laboratory generates effective strategies for brands or therapeutic areas and executes these strategies. To ensure effectiveness, we include innovative EMC tools – Continuing Medical Education- with a complete suite. Here we offer e-learning, clinical cases, virtual congresses, symposiums, and organ atlases. We also offer options for sales representatives and other stakeholders in the pharmaceutical industry and scientific societies.
Thanks to our experience in physical events, amid the Pandemic caused by Covid-19, we created a digital solution called eCongress. This forges the possibility of hosting virtual events – recreating events that take place in the physical events with national and international exhibitors.
With more than 12,000 registered users, we launched a large format with a technological platform, content creation, and logistical support.
Today, our clients have access to a commercial area, academic agenda, and scientific material (content micro-hub) that can be hosted on the platform for a specific amount of time and utilized in the future.
With 68 activations in 3 main cities in the country, Stand Touch was a proposal that allowed us to reach 457 doctors on the panel, 606 doctors outside the panel, and 180 health professionals (nurses and administrative) in 67 medical institutions, avoiding unnecessary trips and optimizing doctors’ times and schedules.
This is the provision of a lectern inside certain medical institutions, which users can leverage for a medical visit with a sales representative located in a different geographical area.
In this case, the user experience prevailed in terms of ease of use, guaranteeing efficiency when carrying out an exercise previously conditioned by attendance.
Match Zone is a combat dynamic (boxing type) recreated in seven hybrid events. Activations were carried out in six cities while a virtual re-transmission of each of them was made in an of our digital tools.
Nearly 2,000 doctors participated in the different events, with 70 attendees in physical spaces and 1,921 virtually.
As part of the dynamic, interaction with the attendees was built around the attendee’s various professions, interests, and participation in the discussion forum; success is reflected in the more than 70,000 interactions per event and an average rating of 94.2/10 by the attendees. At igloolab, we are always looking for innovative ways to simplify science. This drives us to transform scientific and structured topics into dynamic, playful, and entertaining content that is easy to understand and facilitates continuous learning. In a joint effort, hand in hand with our clients, we rise to the challenge of innovation every day – in formats, experiences, and solutions that help them in the task of caring for life.
Luis Alfonso Ruíz