By Michael Deichmiller, account director, Butler/Till Health Group



Data is everywhere! And, as marketers, we should leverage data to improve our ability to reach the target audience that is most likely to be receptive to and engaged with our messages. As pharma marketers, we have a unique challenge, as the highly restrictive advertising landscape that we work within presents its own set of obstacles. But we’re up to the challenge; we know that if any industry can benefit from the ability to use data to increase the relevancy and results of digital campaigns, it’s the pharma industry.

Let’s explore a few ways that we can leverage data to improve our healthcare professional media campaigns:

(1) Digital location-based targeting is nothing new but the precision in which it can be done is greater than ever before – in some cases, we can target someone based on which floor/section of an office space they are located. Using this technology to target HCPs when they are at key conferences and trade events can be a critical element to any media campaign, enhancing the at-show promotions to meet a variety of objectives. There are also opportunities to retarget an audience based on their previous location, which can help with post trade show follow-ups or re-contact strategies.

(2) Diving even deeper in to location-based targeting, we can leverage data about how frequent a specific mobile device ID is at a specific location and use that data to make an educated guess about who the mobile device belongs to – very frequent visitors to medical offices are likely HCPs, non-frequent visitors are likely patients. This can be particularly important in a hospital or clinical setting where the physicians are hard to reach, or in cases where reaching the support staff is extremely important. Combining this data with a brand’s target list can be even more impactful – using media as a support mechanism for the sales force.

(3) Anonymized prescribing data can also be leveraged to reach a sub-set of professionals that are much more likely to take an action or consider a brand/product based on previous behavior. This strategy can also be employed in an attempt to increase share of voice with a specific segment of HCPs based on their prescribing habits in the category (e.g. competitive treatments). We’ve also successfully targeted HCPs based on their prescribing habits of treatments for known comorbidities of the specific disease states for which our client’s brand is indicated.

(4) Lastly, we have recently seen an increase in the number of media partners that have the ability to provide physician level reporting on those HCPs that have engaged with the media campaign/program. While the opportunities to garner this level of detail are still limited, the data is powerful for both sales and marketing to consider. Data regarding the physicians that engage with a particular piece of content on a social platform or publisher website may lead a brand to modify its sales approach with that physician during a subsequent sales visit – providing different materials, brand attributes or clinical data points. As larger trends emerge within the physician engagement data, a brand may consider developing new sales material for a sub-segment of the HCP audience or potentially revamping their current materials to appeal to a specific type of physician.

Data is a powerful thing and as marketers we have the opportunity to leverage data in new and exciting ways to better our campaigns and provide more relevant, timely messaging to our audiences. In the years to come, there will be more data created than has ever existed in the history of mankind. How will you use it?