As a marketing professional, you can manage the basics, probably in your sleep. You develop ideal buyer personas, identify your target market, segment your list, and run efficiently executed campaigns. When you strategize on how to market to medical professionals, however, you need to keep additional things in mind to do your job effectively.
Physicians and medical professionals, more than most prospects in other vertical markets, have extremely demanding schedules, are ultra-focused on their work, and operate as part of complex organizations. They’re also inundated daily with messages, email, reports — and marketing material. Successfully learning how to market to medical professionals takes building marketing strategies that include these seven characteristics to help your campaigns rise above the noise.
Seven Medical Marketing Principles
Mass marketing probably won’t work in the healthcare industry. If your company is emailing announcements about a new system for cardiac ablation, it would just be clutter in an orthopedic surgeon’s inbox. Furthermore, sending irrelevant emails or messages may get medical professionals in the habit of deleting your emails or tossing direct mail without reading it because they assume they don’t apply to them.
Segment your list so you can specifically target campaigns to specific medical professionals.
Whether you’re reaching out via email, direct mail, or social media or making a visit, realize you have only a few seconds to capture a physician’s or medical professional’s attention. You may offer a MedTech system that could improve patient outcomes, revolutionize a physician’s practice, and save money, but if the only way for your prospect to find that information is digging into a lengthy report or white paper, that message won’t get through.
Boil down messaging to the most vital information — something a physician could quickly read on an iPhone.
As you are planning your marketing strategy, never lose sight of what you’re really selling: better patient outcomes, greater efficiency, time savings, cost savings, or other benefits.
Always emphasize the return on investment of your products, either in terms of dollars and cents or soft returns on investment, such as increased employee productivity and satisfaction or better patient experiences.
Marketing to physicians and other medical professionals doesn’t always have to center on your Medtech systems and products. If you have information that can make their lives easier, keep them informed of pivotal regulatory updates or give them a summary of innovations in their field, you can prove that you can be a valuable partner as well as a Medtech system provider.
Use your campaigns to nurture relationships as well as move prospects down the sales funnel.
Doctors are intelligent, educated, and discerning. They aren’t going to be impressed by fluff, inaccurate terminology, or typos. Besides, those aren’t things you want medical professionals to associate with your brand.
Take every measure to ensure factual accuracy, error-free text — and that you replace marketing fluff with hard data.
Does every one of your competitors use an image in their emails or brochures of an attractive, silver-haired woman smiling as she speaks to her doctor? Does every other product promise something that’s faster, safer, and more effective? Then, you probably want to go a different way.
Search for ways to make your marketing materials — and your brand — distinct from your competitors.
For most healthcare organizations, you will need to work with multiple decision makers. This fact makes it necessary to learn who those people are and keep your brand and your Medtech systems top of mind with all of them. It may require stepping outside of normal campaign distributions to share personalized messages and reference conversations you’ve had with colleagues.
Although automation and using boilerplate text saves time, it’s sometimes necessary to manually craft messages that align with the organization and the decision makers you are marketing to.
Get Better with Each Marketing Campaign
An important part of how to market to medical professionals is evaluating your team’s performance. Use A/B testing when you can in order to use the most effective subject lines or messaging, track click rates to learn which types of calls to action (CTAs) get the best response, and, when possible, attribute leads to campaigns that helped generate them. Also, monitor the responses you get from campaigns using different delivery methods and launched on various media channels. This will help you focus on the best way to get your message across — and the best way to spend your marketing budget.
Approaching marketing to physicians and other medical professionals without data on past campaign performance isn’t the most cost-effective strategy — or worse, it may not generate any interest at all. Monitor and measure campaign success, analyzing what you did right — or wrong — to get those results. Then, use that data to inform future initiatives to help produce better results.