Almost 20 years ago we were buying software in a box. We were paying for it once, and with time we were receiving a possibility of additional updates. The software at that time was quite expensive.
Since a couple of last years, there has been taking a change of the model – the new one is based on repeatable subscriptions – like leasing software. On the one hand, a customer is bound to the software supplier (quitting a subscription we can’t use the software anymore), on the other hand, a customer has higher comfort of using it by erasing single fee for the benefit of the smaller monthly ones.
Today we were living in a world of subscription.
The way we consume content.
There is a continues change of a way in which we consume content. Years ago, we mainly used favorite newspapers, later popular website portals.
Search engines and social media constituted another leap towards new behaviors of content consumption.
The content started to be created socially. Journalist became a thing of the past. Influencers – bloggers, vbloggers or celebrities started to be a significant source of information.
The differences in content consumption are significant.
At the first stage, the quality was proven by a brand of the portal which was edited by the journalists.
At the second stage, our friends became a source of valuable content.
The third stage is all about influencers. In the world of medicine influencers for decades have been fulfilled by key opinion leaders – professors.
It is a natural evolution – resulting from overwhelming and unlimited amounts of content around us.
In the past the king was content, today the king is a sender. Let’s take a look at the insta-story where we open a video clip not because we know what there is inside but only because we know who broadcasts it. This person – influencer – constitutes the essential magnetic force for a reader nowadays. It’s credibility, and the number of followers shapes our content value perception.
When we add to that new technologies, the fact that we use the internet mainly on smartphones and we prefer video to text, we shall notice that the evolution towards influencers and video services is a natural outcome. Shorter and convenient formats, identifies an author, expected quality of content.
The service great comeback.
At the latest Apple conference, Tim Cook used multiple times word ‘service’ to literary read its definition:
“Service – the action of helping or doing work for someone.”
according to the Cambridge dictionary:
“Service – a business that offers a particular type of help or work”
The service and its quality become the investment and a key differentiator. It will allow companies to dominate the market by creating bound with customers. Companies can quickly test services against meeting specific expectations of customers, too.
An essential element of building a successful service is a proper opt-in customer. The services do not operate “on general consents of data processing.” A successful service must be “presented” or “sold” by a representative or recommended by another doctor. It’s all about offering the right value proposition to end customer in a context of his current challenges.
To evaluate the value of service, you may ask a target group a set of questions in the matrix.
Therefore, let’s think about how today’s operations of pharmaceutical companies meet the definitions of “actions helping doctors at work.” Does a sending of leaflets and mailings help a doctor at work? How much energy do I have to use to make a doctor remember the domain address, login, and password to it to use the content service which I placed there effectively?
Another challenge is content delivery methods. I believe that a reader shall more and more value newest news, delivered by various types of notifications in uncrowded and preferred smartphone channels like SMS or notification.
Modern services should respond to the real needs of an HCP, for example:
coverage from international conferences implemented by an influencer in a particular environment.
therapeutic program news or new treatments for patients held by unquestioned professional and fan promoting know-how and advice
short reminders related to guidelines, therapy algorithms and medical procedures which can listen on the way to work
In the result, an excellent service around influencers is a perfect communication channel – adjusted, recommended, building reader satisfaction and increasing involvement or key message recall.
Can a marketer dream about anything more?
Is there someone who reads spam emails anymore?
With about 14,5 billion spam emails sent every day, this question is worth the comprehensive answer. 
According to multiple sources, even 70 to 90 percent of all the emails we get are considered to be spam. People don’t trust messages that are coming from an unknown person, mainly when he or she aims to sell something. The most popular cloud-based mailing solution like Gmail has automated filtering of messages to such an extent that the majority of incoming emails are not reaching the general income box and finish unread in some tab called Updates or Promotions. With roughly 70 million Gmail accounts and about 50 more million G-Suite users, you can imagine how much emails, which are not treated as spam will never get the attention.
How to get attention?
Getting the attention of the targeted demographic is what marketers struggle every day. How can you make your message heard, in all this noise? Do you really want to spam doctors or instead make them feel comfortable with your products and salesforce?
If people don’t read mass emails and are equipped with tools to skip them seamlessly, why they consume more and more content? It is all about the personalized digital experience. Salesforce reviewed this trend and found out that for 58 percent of consumers it is absolutely critical for companies to provide a personal experience.
More human touch needed
What is more, 84% of customers agreed that being treated like a person, not a number, is very important for companies to winning their business . The best players on the market learn from this and add a lot of human touch to their services. When Uber realizes that clients would like to listen to the songs they want during the ride, the company allows customers to sync a Spotify playlist with the car audio system.
The rising number of on-demand services and platforms is another example. Users value their time more than ever before. When they would like to watch something, move or series, they will not wait until it is presented on TV. They have Netflix. Not only to watch what they want, whenever they feel hunger for it but also to get the suggestion, what to watch next. The learning algorithm is following every individual to recommend movies or shows that will suit the user with a high likelihood.
The rule behind it is very simple. The user instantly feels a connection with the message if the experience is personalized. The same was in a Starbucks case. The brand keeps customers engaged with its mobile app just by integrating company’s reward system with the option to customize orders via the app. Collecting the data like location and purchase history makes it as personal as it can be. In the end, the app generated about 22 percent of all US sales.
Is the society asking for personalizing experience?
No. The mainstream generation is not asking for it, but demanding it. Standing out from the noisy crowd is a tough nut to crack for digital marketers. Every day they are looking at the metrics wondering how to improve conversion rates, drive more leads and finally increase the company’s revenue. When you know, where the demand is, you don’t bid against it but deliver. According to Harvard Business Review “personalization can deliver five to eight times the ROI on marketing spend, and can lift sales by 10% or more”. It is huge. It may be the winning strategy for the companies struggling in a highly competitive market.
A video is the king of content
There is one more thing that describes the mainstream. People cherish video content more than any other. A little over a decade after the first smartphones appeared on the market, almost everyone can afford a device that gives the opportunity to watch high-resolution movies or video messages. For over 70 percent of marketers, a video is number one in producing conversions. From the customer experience point of view, it is undoubtedly more engaging and memorable than a text. We can see it in a marketing budget, where the expenses on video content are rapidly rising.
We now consumers expect a personalized video experience. We are also aware of the fact that this kind of content can boost sales by 10 percent or more and deliver five to eight times the ROI on marketing spend. Now the most intriguing question is how to do it?
How to implement personalization in the pharmaceutical industry?
Should I hire the video team and produce more video content to publish on YouTube? That may be a question some of the CEOs ask themselves. Probably there is no need to run a separate department in your company, but rather consider a hyper-personalization of digital services. There are tools like Highp platform, made to do it for you with the smallest effort. Especially in the medical and pharmaceutical industries, where you need to build a strong relationship with the doctors, keeping the highest ethical standards.
Highp is paving the way of the responsible communicating with MDs. Thanks to it you can build highly personalized digital services that will seamlessly align with your customers’ journey. Creating video content is easy and can be made by your sales representative equipped only with the smartphone.
Highp Services can be triggered automatically or directly by field force as part of your sales and support communication with customers. As a result, your brand will provide improved customer experience along with content fully aligned to your customer’s needs.
According to ePharma Physician report by Manhattan Research, 64 percent of U.S. physicians reported meeting with sales representative face-to-face in the last six months. But 60% declare that they would like to meet in person in the future. It is meaningful. Connecting via video messages could be more efficient.
No more spam
Don’t hesitate to rethink your communication strategy. Personalization of messages and video usage are going hand in hand to deliver a better ROI, especially when combined with the marketing mix, and the greater mass media campaign. It is also clear information for the doctors: you know from who you get the message, the channel is safe and personal and the video content from the rep is credible. It doesn’t matter if it brought during a pharmaceutical event, a meeting or conference. It is understandable that communicating to doctors is different than advertising to the mass market. But in the end, both targets are people, and in 2019 they hate spam more than ever.
Multichannel touchpoint consists of well-aligned emotional and rational salesforce activities. Take a look at best performing next generation of Multichannel Touchpoint Roadmap. In this case, it is set up of Veeva + Highp + Adobe Marketing Cloud + Mobile Apps.
As can be seen in the above graph, the division of activities into 4 key moments in which the representative gives a clear picture of the situation and enables to secure expectations.
Before the visit, the representative expects data support and recommendations for conducting the meeting, as well as constant education and information about changes that are understandable. Like a doctor, he has trouble reading all emails.
This process is secured today by several tools, from reporting tools that provide insights, training and finally communication.
At this point, it is worth to mention the difference between integration and automation. Integration is the first stage of application association in which selected data is transferred between systems. Automation allows you to enter the logic of the next actions based on them. Thanks to automation, we can not only react but above all react in accordance with the expectations of the user – increasing his level of satisfaction – which is crucial.
In the second stage, the representative visits the doctor. This is the key moment of building relationships – the moment in which we try to convey the emotional element of communication. We aim to provide rational messages too – providing CLM slides in front of HCP – which has become a curse of meetings and instead of helping, in the hands of poorly trained representatives, spoils the entire emotional effect and does not provide a convincing rational message.
We can improve the process by providing a presentation with video comments from an expert, so that the representative focuses on the emotional message, reinforcing the rational credible message.
Having acquired data from meetings, collected by the representative in CRM or by gathering activity during the presentation, we can automatically perform a number of additional activities. Make additional profiling and provide more information after the meeting. In this way, we will increase the number and quality of rational messages transmitted.
A visit is a great moment to invite a doctor to a dedicated service. Such services can be offered by several companies, from documentaries from key international conferences to instructions and guidelines for therapeutic programs. The website is a service providing information in the form of a series of messages, in accordance with the expectations of the doctor and preferably – responding to the doctor while using the site. Proactive sending of the website to doctors allows providing minimum information, without the need to involve the doctor in pro-active activities like visiting websites, providing the same or better experience and quality.
The communication format is not insignificant. The level of relationship with the sender and the contextuality of the message affect the engagement of the people. These are the intuitive arguments that each of us naturally uses by sifting unwanted messages. T
The next element is “format attractiveness”. The text is replaced today by video in all channels – from Facebook, Snapchat to internal communication. People prefer short, reliable video content from text and static images.
In the next stage after the visit, we can perform a series of actions that will allow us to increase the reach, quality of communication, recall and the value of our offer. The representative can send a message after a visit, or instead of a visit. A representative can align the content to HCP, add a personal element of communication, to build relationships remotely.
The next step beyond email and short text messaging is the opportunity of remote meetings that will be more and more appreciated, especially by specialists. Remote meetings may include an alternative to a doctor’s appointment or an added value in the form of round tables in a small group of doctors. Returning to the automation, it is worth to ensure that all data from these activities are available to the automation system. Thanks to this, we can re-profile our doctors and provide automatic actions or entire services.
Measures aimed to activate HCP and equip with self-learning tools, such as websites, bots, mobile applications, are out of the scope of this article. I hope this short description of the touchpoints will help you to formulate your roadmap and to notice the differences between the communication formats and the time of use. Nowadays, companies are implementing a new approach to integrated communication, which assumes strengthening sales with digital tools available so far only in mass communication.
Being a great pharmaceutical rep is becoming more and more difficult. With almost unlimited Internet access and tons of available materials about medicines, doctors are expecting from reps the most up-to-date knowledge.
What is the risk of having poorly trained reps?
Pharmaceutical representatives are at the forefront of the company communication channel to doctors. With a week performance, the costs could be enormous. Losing physicians trust due to the lack of knowledge or miscommunication is like operating to the detriment of the company. How managers and sales directors can act to avoid such situation?
A traditional way of teaching reps
In the era when the Internet was used rather out of curiosity, for fun or perhaps to send an email, pharmaceutical companies were accustomed to the traditional way of training representatives. The whole company gathered for two or three days in nicely looking hotel localized in the beautiful environment and a professional set of trainers though and motivate reps to work. Although the conditions were perfect and the trainers were the best in their class, after two days of intense learning, not so much was absorbed. And with the integration party at night, the second day of training for some attendants was most often described by the saying “the spirit is willing, but the flesh is weak.”
Those kinds of meetings are essential for companies and need to be organized for keeping the team motivated, learning soft skills and integrating with each other. But for difficult to acquire pharmaceutical industry knowledge, there are different, more effective ways of learning. Especially now when the Internet changed mostly everything, and the costs side of the project is more important than ever. The ROI from training sessions must be ensured so that companies could invest in the new training. Let’s be frank, the whole company gatherings or even regional ones are very expensive and time-consuming. Comparing to not so great results, there is a lot to consider.
What can you do better?
Are you familiar with the phrases “the new millennium learner,” “knowledge workers” or “digital immigrants”? All of them refer to current times when in information buzz people are overstimulated and needed to adapt to this situation by changing the way they learn. To illustrate it, let’s just focus on books, having in mind that the Internet is a way bigger source of information. According to the New York State Library Bookboard, less than 10 thousand books were published in the US in 1907, but in 2010 it was about three mln. During a century US population quadrupled, and the number of books published was 300 times greater. Huge, isn’t it?
For the older generation (before Millennials) books were one of the most important sources of knowledge. But the example above confirms that with such waste number of options it is not anymore possible to become knowledgeable fast and in the traditional way. To many sources from which you can get the knowledge make the task very difficult. Adding the Internet to the quotation we know, that achieving the expected effect can be practically impossible. It is how microlearning was invented.
Microlearning – learning solution of our times
The main idea behind microlearning is to facilitate self-directed lifelong learning, divide it into smaller activities which can be easily integrated into everyday activities. As a broad term, it can be used in various situations, but what should interest the pharmaceutical management team are the short, work-based training formats. Sometimes it is a kind of support for informal learning or self-contained training. But the best way is to use it consistently, every day for a short period. It may not be easy to manage it by oneself, but fortunately, there are platforms which makes it simple.
Using Highp platform to fulfill reps need for knowledge.
Highp platform gives the opportunity of sending short video messages and afterward, measure results and collect all of the necessary data. In the pharma business, rep gets a quick, 30-second long material every day, and can display it straight on his or her smartphone. It is a convenient and aesthetic way to refresh the knowledge of a certain topic. The next day another video incomes, preceded by a short question about the piece of information received the day before. It definitely raises the memorability.
It is straightforward, cheap and easy to implement, without any type of gamifying, can be run on any smartphone device and is highly rated by the users. Why is that?
First of all the message is short, very informative and rep gets it before 7, and 8 am while he or she is heading to the first meeting. They can focus on it without getting involved in technical things like opening some app or login in. For managers, the outcome is even better as the platform collects very detailed data.
Collecting data from the platform
Here are the outcomes from one of the Highp client who carried out 50 campaigns containing 1366 messages. The open rate was more than 83 percent. Campaigns took three months and were supported by 16 audiobooks or PDF materials. The CTA of 98 percent from users who opened the message is huge. What do you think about that?
Managers and sales directors of pharmaceutical companies could benefit a lot by taking part in such a platform. It is very cost effective and doesn’t take much of a highly prized representative time. Highp fits the microlearning trend which makes it one of the most effective way of learning and consolidating knowledge. Of course, there are other methods that base on the Internet environment, like e-learning platforms, emails or recurring meetings. But all of that requires proactive participation of the representative which is time-consuming.
In the end, the pharmaceutical company will get well trained, motivated personnel, more time to manage the results and a reason to organize an integrational meeting just to celebrate and teamwork after a good quarter or year. Would you like to try it?
We are happy to announce that Highp Presentations add-in to PowerPoint is now available in the Microsoft Office 365 Store. From now on, creating a Highp presentation will be as easy as creating an ordinary one.
With the Highp Presentations add-in, you can create a new presentation or edit an existing one in PowerPoint window, within a few clicks! Create engaging, non-linear presentations of PowerPoint slides and record video comments to each slide.
How to install Highp Presentations add-in in Powerpoint
Open your PowerPoint and choose the “Insert” tab.
Go to “Add-ins” section and click on the “Store” icon.
Type “Highp” in the searching box and click on the “Add” button when you see the add-in on the list.
After adding the add-in, you will have to log in to your panel, using the Product Manager’s credentials. Done! Now you can create your Highp Presentations in PowerPoint.
How to create Highp Presentations in PowerPoint
Open an existing presentation or create a new one in the panel on the right. In Highp Video presentation panel on the right (by default) click import slides. Highp will export your slides to static image format. Now you can add these slides or add and connect instantly.
Choose slides you want to add to your Highp Presentation in the panel.
Once added, you can connect your slides, change their order, add a video comment and a chapter of your presentation.
If you have changed something in your PowerPoint slides and want to replace it in your Highp Presentation, click on the “replace” option in the slide’s menu and choose a slide from the list.
When everything’s set, publish your presentations so your representatives can start using it immediately. Once you publish your presentation, you can export as a public link, include it in one of your Highp online course or export it to Veeva CLM format.
See step by step, how to add and start using add-in:
Is it the time to say farewell to traditional methods of conducting medical conferences?
Medical conferences and events play an important part in the pharma industry. Practitioners treat them as a primary source of expanding their medical knowledge. [source] They get the latest medical news and learn how to help their patients efficiently. They have the possibility of networking and exchanging valuable professional experience. Advantages are apparent, and so are disadvantages. In a hectic life of a practitioner, a conference means taking some absences from work, time-consuming trips, incurring additional expenses and some unpredictable factors which need to be considered such as, e.g., illness. Looking at conferences from the perspective of an organizer, they are a must in the highly competitive pharma business. They are also quite demanding in terms of content, compliance and toughening legislation. [source] Organizing a conference can mean continuous challenges: to find an exceptional place, to secure KOLs (key opinion leaders) and to assemble an appropriate number of returning and new participants. It means providing outstanding lectures, meaningful interaction and some entertainment afterward. All of the above within a certain budget. All the above to make it up-to-date and memorable experience.
The conferencing business quickly embraces technology. Acc. to Market Research Media, the overall virtual event market is predicted to grow from $14 billion in 2018 to $18 billion in 2023. [source] It further assumes that traditional conferences and trade shows will gradually move towards virtual events, either to be completely replaced by them or will create a hybrid combining elements of a traditional event and a virtual one. [source] American Express’ Global Meetings and Events Forecast presents some main trends within the conferencing business which turn technology to the unique customer experience. [source] One of them is the use of augmented reality (AR) or virtual reality (VR). Both become more and more affordable these days. The idea behind is to share the experience among the participants during the conference. In 2017 alone, 42% of examined companies used augmented reality during conferences and corporate events and 39% were using virtual reality, with further plans of usage at the level over 85% among the examined companies in 2018. Both technologies can sound even more alluring when thinking of 3D live-streaming during conferences. Artificial intelligence (AI) is another big tech thing to be further used during conferences. 42% of examined companies claim to use AI during conferences. AI can take the form of chatbots answering the participant’s simple questions or become a part of a conference mobile application which will further help in, e.g., networking. [source] Furthermore, event apps gain on massive popularity, with 91% of event planners seeing a return on investment from event apps. [source] Event apps allow for embracing augmented reality (AR) or virtual reality (VR) technologies, networking and many more. Last but not least, for an up-to-date conference, one cannot imagine buying a ticket or registration without social networking websites, combining the social aspects of human life with professional ones.
The situation in the pharma conferencing industry, which constitutes the biggest part of the education sector, is hardly different. [source] In the report “The Future of Medical Conferences” (FirstWord Perspectives Report) one can see that 86% of doctors use a smartphone for work and 53% use a tablet for work. There is a growing number of digital-natives and millennials who favor a 24/7, on-demand training to traditional conferences. [source] The report states that doctors were asked to assess in 2016 their physical and virtual attendance during conferences in 2021. Generally, respondents declared participation in person in a smaller number of conferences. [source] When asked about the impact of online interactive medical conferences on their ability to access knowledge, over 54% saw a positive impact. [source] The main drivers for attending a virtual conference were: comfort to access the conference anytime (acc. to 32% of respondents) and progress in technology (28%). [source]
Highp conferencing comes as the answer to the growing demand for digitalization in the field of the pharma conferencing. This is one of the services available within the Highp tool, other being: follow-ups, video messaging, audio messages, education programs, and promotion campaigns. Highp as a tool is easy to use and does not require a user to be tech-savvy. No app installation is needed. Designed to be as intuitive as the use of a smartphone, the messages are sent as SMS but opens in a rich feature format (audio, video or presentation) supplying information and education straight to a doctor´s mobile.
Highp conferencing helps cascade global trends into the local practitioner’s environment. It acts as a newsroom, so a practitioner does not need to wait for updates published in pharma magazines. The messages from the conference can be simply seen or heard on the go. They are usually quite short: 2-3 minutes long so they can be easily squeezed into a practitioner’s agenda with a possibility to request more detailed information. Highp holds communication with a non-physically attending doctor the same way as it does do with attendees. One can find there a pre-congress phase which builds the excitement, a core conference, i.e., supplying the daily highlights from the conference, and finally, a wrap-up stage (with a survey and a key message recall). The conferencing functionality in Highp has been successfully tested several times, to mention some recent conferences as ASCO (the American Society of Clinical Oncology), EBCC (the European Breast Cancer Conference) or ECTRIMS (the European Committee for Treatment and Research in Multiple Sclerosis).
The advantages of using Highp are numerous. A pharma company can attract the group of practitioners who otherwise would not be able to attend. Both for the company and for the practitioner the cost of virtual attending is lower than participation in person. Practitioners have hands on latest knowledge immediately just via a smartphone, which everybody has.
It seems that further progress in digitalization of pharma conferences is inevitable. The quicker one adopts efficient tools, the bigger benefits one obtains. With Highp tool lagging behind is not an option. On the contrary, it means getting a competitive advantage over other pharma players.
As those are the number from the United States, it can be quickly confronted with other markets and economies. As the most significant group of potential candidates is among the millennials, building employer branding strategy needs to contain knowledge about them.
Who to employ?
Among all of the generations available on the market as potential employees, Millennials are the most significant and most promising group. They are in the age to start their professional career, have a lot of desired skills and are open for the new challenges. But on the other side, they also have big expectations.
According to a Business Insider survey, “69% of people 18 to 34 years old said they thought they learned more from technology than from people, compared with 50% of people older than 45 who said the same.”
Nowadays, getting the job is much easier than five or ten years ago. The unemployment rate in most of the developed countries is declining year after year. A lot of companies are fighting not only to recruit the right person but also to maintain such environment to keep the new employee satisfied and stay longer within the organization. And potential employees know about that, so they don’t take the first offer, but do research, read the opinion about companies. According to the Gallup survey, 75% of them turn to family and friends when making career decisions. They also try to find out the way the future employer could fit into their path of development. And this is one of the most critical factors.
We are living in the environment overloaded with data and distractors that are ubiquitous. Time is becoming the most valuable asset. Especially for the millennials. Their expectations are much higher comparing to older generations. Taking as much as they can from every situation, living each day to the full is what they need. An old model in which you work in one or two places for the whole life to live a stable and predictable life isn’t what they need. Looking at millennials parents whose goal was to work entire career to earn for the dream retirement isn’t appealing anymore. They are afraid that when they become elderly, they wouldn’t have the vital strength to realize their plans. So they are looking for a workplace which will respect their time.
How to respect Millennial’s time?
The potential employer should take a look at the workflow inside the company. How is it organize? How much time is consumed by endless meetings, conference calls, stand-ups? What is the model of sharing knowledge, learning new things? As the older generations are used to course books, and long lasting lectures, for people born after 1990 there are much more options to choose. Millennials, mostly raised in an internet era, have a whole spectrum of learning facilities. They are great in searching and filtering of unnecessary information. Spending three hours at the traditional training session to learn some new feature could be a waste of time since they can get into this knowledge faster and more efficiently.
So how do they learn things? The era of social media changed the way people process information. From long forms, in case of which the full and undistracted attention was needed for an extended period, it developed into short but aggregated forms. Few words, one picture or a short movie and a bunch of hashtags, the modern version of catalog cards in the library, revolutionized communication. While people used to it, they change not only the habits of social activities but also how they learn new things. A few years ago the infographics became very powerful and effective solution. Mixing words, images, and milestones was an excellent idea to summarize the knowledge. But it still wasn’t the best way to teach new things. Now it is going even further thanks to microlearning.
What is microlearning and why it is so beneficial?
Microlearning is a metaphor describing various micro aspects of different learning models, concepts and processes. By dividing a full range of material into smaller pieces, it is more useful to learn. What’s more, it seems to be the perfect solution for millennials, as they are used to that way of absorbing knowledge. Being accustomed to it is just one benefit. Another one is even more important. With microlearning, time is the essence. Small units of knowledge are more manageable than old-fashioned training, so it is easier to put them into the busy corporate calendar. Not only millennials will appreciate that. It is a win-win situation for all company’s stakeholders. Only one question remains. How to do it?
One of the best options to provide the benefits of microlearning is to use Highp. It is the platform that offers a modern solution for communication with employees regardless of their technological advancement and technical skills. Thanks to the intuitive system of video messages it is perfect for microlearning. The owner of the platform could analyze the effectiveness and assess the knowledge of the employees.
What is more, Highp uses audio and video to reach employees directly with the knowledge they need at the specific moment, when they can get acquainted with it. With the whole range of short tests, it will adapt to their needs. The minimum amount of information at one time is beneficial. As the Highp message can be sent in accordance with the schedule of each user or accelerate depending on the engagement Highp allows you to present knowledge to millennials in a tailor-made way. The course can be adjusted which gives the opportunity to choose an educational path which the employee more expects at the moment.
For companies that believe in employer branding, it is an affordable form of reaching employees with short but critical information. It increases the involvement in a company’s life, its goals, products, mission and much more. On the broader spectrum, it builds the company’s image and offers the employees a continuous and substantive development. For millennials staying on the market as a qualified professional is substantial.
That could be the first and easy to reach the step of becoming not only the respected employer but also the one that listens to its employees and takes their needs into account. As financial benefits are essential, probably the most valuable ones are those related to time. It also helps in checking what is crucial for the ones who are building the organization. If time is this factor, it is also great news for the board. There is nothing better than having a team of professionals who are concerned about time management. That shows dedication to push things forward.
It seems that most of HR departments are more occupied with the problem what are employees’ training needs rather than what method should be picked up to have good and long-lasting training results. Repetition and hands on activity are vital to retain knowledge. It is also fundamental what tools are used since they can hugely impact employee’s knowledge retention. Microlearning, though gaining more popularity, is still not used to such an extent as one might expect. The aim of this article is to present how microlearning is employed by some of the companies to achieve outstanding business results, but also to make the learning journey an attractive experience for their employees.
Microlearning is the method to grasp knowledge presented in small chunks. A learning session takes place on the mobile device. A module is short, usually around 5 min. or even less. It is packed with essentials. One microlearning lesson has only one specific goal to perform. Videos or other rich formats accompany the training to accelerate the learning process. Gamification i.e. using the elements from games or game convention is often used in microlearning. Moreover, learner can decide when or where to take the lesson. It is the learner who is in the center of attention and his/her needs. Retaining knowledge is fundamental. Continuous learning in small bites guarantees best results. Microlearning is the learning method which has appeared as the answer to growing number of millennials as the workforce but its appeal is much broader. The method is said to bring high engagement among the participants and give outstanding business results.
One of the examples of microlearning’s use is onboarding prepared by Domino’s Pizza. The idea was to give its new employees a standardized training when they come to work. Onboarding is often overloaded with knowledge, sometimes it discourages new staff. They have to learn many different things: ingredients, quantities and recipes and it’s tough to prioritize things in the beginning. Additionally, the tasks need to be done in a limited period of time. The training aimed to engage them with their new duties, to quickly teach them know-how and give the possibility to come back to the training if needed. The formula used in the training was gamification and it was highly rated by the staff. As a result, Domino Pizza claimed increase of speed to competency among the employees, cost savings due to learning right proportions from the beginning and as a result more satisfied customer.
Another example of using microlearning method was employed by American retailer Walmart who introduced a compliance training for the employees. Walmart needed to introduce safety culture which would affect in the decrease of injuries and accidents at work and last but not least save a lot of company’s money. Additional challenge was the fact that the workforce was multi-generational. Instead of traditional trainings, Walmart introduced Axonify™ microlearning platform. Employees were supposed to log into the platform while they had some down time during each shift. They had a task to play the game for 3 to 5 minutes and after to answer some questions regarding safety. They were given instant feedback on their results and the system remembered answers so it was able to come back to employee’s gaps in knowledge. The platform acted as a continuous loop. Both knowledge and behavior were tested to make sure that they were implemented on a daily basis. Walmart successfully diminished number of injuries and accidents at work. It increased significantly the knowledge on safety regulations among the employees. The platform gained huge popularity, not only was it focused on individual needs but it also did it in a funny, engaging way.
BT Consumer, a division of British Communication group, also used microlearning for training. Their aim was to improve customer service since many customers complained about it. Many unsatisfied customers had to phone several times to solve their problems. Additionally, BT Consumer recruited a lot of employees and needed fast onboarding training. Similarly to Walmart, the training had a game formula and microlearning bites ensure that the learning was efficient and interesting. Since the number of employees was around 2 500, it was vital that learning was individualized to cater for different knowledge and experience. BT Consumer claimed that the customer service had improved, which manifested itself in reduced number of callback rate. Customer value improvement grew by 5%. Reduction in call-handling time caused that customer service could handle more customers in shorter period of time.
Microlearning is also utilized in product training to help the staff remember product specifications. One can find such an example in Toyota, in the USA. The car company helped car dealerships learn the specification and differences regarding different car models. It was available for 25 000 representatives. The company noted 5% increase in their sales satisfaction index and increased sales. Not only did it help the staff to remember specifications, but it positively influenced their self-confidence making them better salespersons.
Examples of microlearning can also be found in a competitive pharma industry. Connectmedica™ uses microlearning in its Highp platform. Highp allows to send personalised messages via SMS, e-mail or push-up notification. Microlearning is one of the aspects of the platform. Additionally, it has also tools to conduct account-based campaigns, can be used for customer services and allows for follow ups. Highp microlearning is an up-to-date solution which can be used for onboarding new employees, product training or just-in-time training. It allows the employees to have trainings without disturbing their daily working routines. For the company it means cost savings as trainings can be easily updated and they are cheaper in comparison to traditional trainings. Messages are positively assessed by 90% of recipients. Highp gets very positive feedback from the leading pharma companies.
Microlearning can be used for different trainings with different purposes. Its up-to-date features (mobile use and usually game-like formula) make it appealing to employees. Microlearning opens a new chapter in learning methods.
A popular joke among professionals presents two managers talking at work about a training for an employee. The financial manager says ¨What if we invest in him and he leaves the company…¨. ¨What if we don’t and he stays…¨, answers the other. It seems that most of companies have successfully gone through the questioning of the training needs. No doubt, in the fast-paced, technology-dominated world employees need trainings. The more relevant question is how to make most of trainings, so both employees and employers maximize their gains.
Changing learner’s profile
According to Forbes, a learner profile is undergoing serious changes nowadays and it has a huge impact on the training model. Forbes points out to some of the demographic and social changes. Growing mobility of workforce can be treated as a constant now. Increasing number of millennial employees is another important aspect. Acc. to PWC millennials will constitute half of the global workforce by 2020. Millennials bring some expectationswith them, such as needs for development and training, preferably in flexible hours, so they can choose time for training themselves e.g. while commuting. Forbes also points out that most of the workers are not available at their desks even up to 50 or 60% of their time during their workday, because of on-the-go schedule, flexible time or remote work. Additionally, one can see that there is a need for highly qualified staff on the market and employees are expected to have broad knowledge and learn fast.
Why current methods are not enough?
When one thinks of a traditional training session with a coach, problems such as time, cost and efficiency pop up. Long training sessions take much of employees’ time. It’s already a challenge to organize them amid busy working schedules. The cost cannot be overlooked because training needs for different employees are various while budget limitations do not change. Efficiency of a whole day training event can be sometimes questionable. Trainings can be interrupted by external factors and the attention span has also its limitations. Success of the session depends on the effectiveness of the instructor. 
Computer-Based Training (CBT), quite a popular tool, has also some basic disadvantages such as: not enough of interaction, not suitable for teaching soft skills or simply being monotonous.
Other training methods such as mobile applications seem not to work in companies which claim “bring your own device” policy (BYOD). Smartphones, for example, have different operating systems and the factor can exclude some of the staff from training.
Even online trainings, reported by the ASTD “State of the Industry” as extremely popular these days, have some disadvantages. They are usually generic trainings and not tailored to companies’ needs. Moreover, they are expensive to create. Companies’ hardware can impede training. Participants sometimes feel awkward to ask questions online and impersonal nature of the training can act as a disadvantage. 
Microlearning as the option
According to eLearning Industry, microlearning becomes more and more popular and it is claimed to be a milestone in learning. Microlearning is today’s answer to millennials’ learning needs but its appeal is much broader. It uses the advancements in brain science and progress in technology. Microlearning is self- paced, on demand training which allows a learner to take frequent, bite-sized microlessons, so called learning nuggets. The popularity of the tool can be attributed to mobile technology and game-like formula. It’s designed to be used on the move, so by its very nature it is short – up to 5 minutes or less. It is packed with essentials. Videos seem to be much more preferred over other mediums, but there are other options available: audio, presentations and games. The aim is to concentrate upon one objective per training. Small chunks of knowledge supplied regularly in an attractive format seem to work better than traditional methods.
There are many advantages of microlearning use. Its concise form helps to keep dwindling attention span. It engages learners and allows them to complete even a few microlearning modules. No stress, no feeling of being bored or overloaded with a long training session. Concepts are memorised better because a microlearning module concentrates on one specific aim. Microlearning sessions are constructed in such a way that they help to overcome Ebbinghaus’ “forgetting curve”, the phenomena of natural knowledge loss over time if no attempt was made to repeat it. Microlearning sessions can be taken at any time, any place. They do not distract an employee from the work, since they don’t cause long breaks. They combine new material with repetition. For a company they are much more affordable than training sessions. They are quick to develop and update.
eLearning Industry claims that microlearning has versatile usages. It can be used for employee’s onboarding or getting the professional knowledge about the company and its products. It can be used for trainings of the staff working in retail industry, helping them to explain the working of a tool or a product specifications. It can also be used for compliance trainings to teach the staff e.g. safety procedures. It can be used to develop professional skills trainings. The possibilities are numerous. All materials are presented in an up-to-date, attractive and easily digested way.
Microlearning in practise
Currently growing number of companies use microlearning as an efficient way to train their employees. Connectmedica™ sees a high potential in microlearning and incorporates it in the tools which are developed. Designed for pharma industry Highp platform is such an example. It is a communication tool between the sales representative and the customer. Highp allows to send personalised messages via SMS, e-mail or push-up notification. It allows to publish interesting educational materials such as video or audio (2-3 minutes long). Supplying up-to-date concise knowledge in an attractive packaging is important, but equal emphasis is put on the retention of the material. The microlearning Highp training is linked with a short test to check knowledge. Highp platform is all about mobility. Apart from possibility to open messages on tablet, PC or Mac, it can also be opened on smartphones. It is a perfect tool to be used on the way to work in a car or on a bus. A special automation system allows to put the messages in a que. Progress of an individual can be checked and one can see whether a lesson has been finished or abandoned. It is vital that system can be customised for each employee so they learn exactly what they need instead of having “one fits all” training.
Highp microlearning is an up-to-date solution which can be used for onboarding and just-in-time training. The technical capabilities of users are not important. Every smartphone user is able to use it since the platform is intuitive.
It is important to stay updated esp. in the fast changing and competitive industry such as pharma. Highp is the platform that gives most advanced tools and makes sure that microlearning is interesting and efficient. Highp is eagerly used by professionals who have busy schedules and who know the real value of time. It does not overburden them with long training sessions but offers essentials which are needed. Highp has been trusted by numerous leading pharma companies.
To make microlearning more practical, let’s characterize it. This term is often connected with microcontent. It could be some short quote, a few seconds movie clip, flashcard, short podcast, SMS and more.
It is believed that we can call the process microlearning if it can be done in the amount of time between a few seconds to about fifteen minutes. It could also be connected with other short-lasting activities. Nowadays it is most widely used to describe the informal way of how people are learning thing using all of the available sources, especially the Internet and some new and advanced technologies.
According to the report “Microlearning: an emerging field in science” by Theo Hug from the University of Innsbruck (Austria) “Freeing MicroContent from its container allows for all kind of new ways of using, reusing, hashing, mixing and mashing content. Content gains new meaning in new contexts, well beyond the intention of the original authors.”
To be sure, that we are dealing with microlearning, let’s take a look at all of the dimensions that characterize it. The first one is time, as we previously said, it should be short. A low afford kind of shortness. The second one is the content, that should be presented in small units, concern relatively simple issues, and possibly narrow topics. It should also be informal, as it is easier to memorize. What form should it have? The best way is to present content in episodes. In this case, you could provide a lot of knowledge in the most digestible way. Two last things to have in mind is the mediality of the content and the consistent learning type.
How Walmart increased personnel safety thanks to microlearning?
When we think about a Walmart, a multinational retail corporation, the last word that will come to our mind is “micro.” We name this hypermarket chain operator with adjectives like biggest, wealthiest, most significant, most prominent and so on. But there is one activity in which Walmart excels with “micro” in its name. It is called microlearning.
If you are one of the biggest employers, sooner or later the safety of your personnel will become a significant and vital issue. With 150 distributor centers across the United States with more than 75 000 associates, the chance of an injury is quite big. It is why in 2010, Ken Woodlin, Vice President of Compliance, Safety and Asset Protection for Walmart Logistics decided to introduce a safety program. His goal was to go one step ahead and build a world-class safety culture. He decided to implement it by microlearning.
Woodlin hired a company that was supposed to face a few key challenges. Reducing safety incidents in Walmart Logistics locations was the first point of the agenda. Woodlin wanted to improve employees’ knowledge about safety practices. With multi-generation staff, he needed a solution that could engage all of the employees. The last task was to predict at-risk behaviors.
After recognizing the main problem, the company decided to use microlearning as the best tool to implement solutions that would work with all of the four generations of employees. Something that could be beneficial for the Traditionalists, Baby Boomers, Generation X, and Millennials. In 2012 he implemented a microlearning platform which identified the knowledge gaps and gave the employees the ability to perform their roles in the best way. The platform works like a quiz that should be taken during each shift. It takes about three to five minutes of playing the nice game and answering some critical questions meanwhile.
The results were magnificent. Incidents at eight of Walmart’s centers decreased by 54 percent. About 96 percent of employees applied their knowledge on the job. With more than 90 percent of voluntary participation, it showed that the staff accepts this kind of training. Other results showed that the knowledge level on the topics around safety increased by 15 percent and the employees confidence in this field increased by 8 percent.
If Warren Buffet uses microlearning, you can’t just pass by.
One of his companies, Berkshire Hathaway Media Group, is managing over 100 newspapers, with over 30 of them published daily. With multinational and multicultural sales team it wasn’t so easy to find the one way to prepare a training program that would fit everybody. Thanks to microlearning platform, 98% of all of the participants found it useful and said that with just-in-time learning options it met their needs perfectly.
How expensive is that solution?
Walmart is a big company with almost 12 000 stores worldwide and more than 500 billion dollars in revenue. That is huge. The organization is wealthy enough to use the most expensive tools. But we need to remind one thing. Walmart strategy is to be cost-efficient. That is why this company is an excellent case study for other, much smaller organizations. And microlearning is one of the best examples of that thesis. It is a cheap, efficient, easy to use and engaging proposition for all sorts of companies.
What are the microlearning tools available on the market?
One of the most affordable platforms to use is Highp. Highp is a platform which allows to send short, personalized video and audio messages via SMS or email. The solution is a non-traditional one – since it is not an app, the user doesn’t need to log in or install anything on their mobile device. Thanks to which it can be used in a variety of different situations. The messages are short enough to be listened to in the so-called “meantime”. The recipients choose when and where they want to get acquainted with the content – whether it is in the car, the elevator, the gym or during the lunch break. Highp is user-friendly, designed to be used by everyone, including those who do not use mobile devices on daily basis. The platform allows to make a queue for messages which is adapted to the needs and individual progress. The owner of the process can quickly check which employees finished the program and who stuck along the way.
Microlearning as a tool for onboarding.
One of the best examples of an activity which is crucial for every company, and could be quickly done with microlearning is the onboarding process. When a new employee appears on the deck, it is a must to introduce them to other employees, their tasks and responsibilities. Even in the smallest organization, it can be a painful and inefficient process. Thanks to microlearning solutions such as Highp-based onboarding package, the process of introducing a new employee to the organization’s structure could be conducted in a much more comfortable manner almost effortlessly. It could also be essential in building a professional and modern image of the company. Used worldwide it might help the busiest and hard-working employees to focus only on the essential matters, avoiding unnecessary meetings, never-ending emails, and conference calls till the wee hours. What is even more critical, micro-knowledge is easy to memorize and it is less likely to be forgotten.
If the best-managed companies on the planet could use microlearning platforms and get results, it is a perfect solution for every organization. Highp, created by experts from Connectmedica with the help of the best trainers and training authors seems to be the right choice for every aspiring business.
Conference. If you begin to shake every time someone says this word because you know how much effort it costs to show your company up at such event and how miserable effects it brings, it means you are the right person to receive this message. We understand you.
Too many tasks, too little time
We know that when you think about an event your actions focus on how will people see your company at the exhibition hall – your booth, fliers, booklets, etc. And of course, participating in conferences and congresses and the way your company presents itself plays an important role in creating brand awareness but…
Well, there are few “buts”. First of all – where’s your audience? Did you invite them to the event? Yeah, ok, you emailed them but did they open the message? Did they like your message? Secondly, will they show up at the event? How long will they remember of your company?
It is extremely important to remember that the lifetime of information is very short. According to Ebbinghaus’es Forgetting Curve, people lose around 70% of what they have learned just 3 days after the event. And when it comes to your clients, you don’t want them to forget about your company, do you? The solution is very simple – remind of yourself after the conference! Look at the Forgetting Curve below. If you provide a proper follow-up, your audience will remind themselves about you immediately.
Introducing Conferencing solution
We divided conference activities into 3 phases to make event promotion more efficient. First, you need to plan your actions and collect customer opt-ins. In the pre-conference phase, your main challenge is to increase awareness of your brand and engage your audience. We provide integrated tools to build detailed database – Datuso – and initiate the communication – Highp.
Phase 1 of conferencing
Then there’s the event. Usually it’s more than just one day event, and to differentiate yourself, you have to be one step further than other companies. Think of the daily highlights from the conference, wouldn’t be that nice to receive a brief info on the most important information via SMS and emails, when you’re back in your hotel? As they say, repetition is the mother of all learning – that’s why we deliver more and more via Highp messages.
Phase 2 of conferencing
Speaking of the repetition – it’s quite usual that companies end their conference activity on the last day of the event. To stay remembered it is highly important to keep the communication ongoing, for example by sending Highp follow up messages weekly. Your company may also attach interactive DBE presentations, video commented by Key Opinion Leaders, to increase the credibility of the communication.
Phase 3 of conferencing
There’s another advantage of Connectmedica’s conferencing solution – you may use once built database during future conferences and stay remembered longer than others.
For the majority of HCPs, conferences are the venues where they can learn about new research, drugs and essential studies. In the best case scenario, as a CMO of the pharmaceutical company, you should do everything to cover as many medical conferences as it is possible. But there are a few drawbacks.
Conferences are expensive.
In every possible way. If you are planning to emphasize your presence, you either need to be an organizer or one of the primary sponsors. How much to pay for it? There are a lot of offers to look through, even open to the public, like this World Cancer Congress that will be held in Kuala Lumpur later this year.[source]After reading almost thirty pages of this spectacular presentation, you will be probably convinced why it is so essential to becoming a sponsor, but also how to get rid of hundreds of thousands of dollars. And to be frank, it is not just a well-marketed pharma needs creation. It is a plain fact. Conferences are costly. At least, classic ones.
As this conference example covers only one event for the one branch of the medicine, usually pharmaceutical companies have a more comprehensive offer to sell. With a broader range of drugs, different specializations, CMOs needs to reserve millions of dollars to reach the audience of the leading medical conferences each year. According to the report from the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education, the pharmaceutical industry spent on accredited continuing medical education in 2016 hit $704 million [source].
The top of the iceberg
Is it rational? If you can afford it, then yes. Sponsorship of the conference gives you a lot of opportunities, but to materialize you need a lot more than just paying for sponsor package. When the event day arrives, you are becoming a captain of a ship during a storm. All hands on deck needed.
To squeeze the most from what you paid for, you should provide a little army of staff, who would take every opportunity to talk to the doctors, lead the keynotes, present your drugs and research, speak during the banquets, presentations, ask questions. It is an unfinished list of things to do during the conference. And it also cost a lot. Just take logistics, accommodations, outfits.
After having all of this you can probably call yourself a conference winner, but when you look at it from the broader perspective, you will see that it is just a top of the iceberg. Thera is plenty of other conferences that you can’t attend. More doctors that will not hear a word from you, and you never know, who will become the most influential practitioner or academic researcher in the upcoming years. Maybe he or she is not present at the event you are paying to attend.
So how to get the most of it? What is growth hacking and how to implement it in your pharma marketing plan?
For many reasons, growth hackers are focusing on innovation, scalability, and user connectivity. Instead of a traditional way of buying the access to the target group by advertising, sponsorship and so on, they are thinking about cheaper but as well or even more effective alternatives.
It is thanks to the fast development of the new technologies that we can try the new possibilities. Twenty years ago we read every email we got from the top to the bottom of it, sometimes several times. Now, we don’t. With so many of them, our mailboxes, like Gmail can even categorize them as offers, notification, and social media related content, that we don’t even see it in our main inbox. There are a lot less so-called evergreens that in previous years. What does it mean? That if you are doing something first from the crowd, you can gain much more than when everybody does so.
So what about conferences? Is there any modern alternative for it?
Conferencing is the new deal
There is a new solution called conferencing. It is very basic in the formula but can lead to the unexpected outcomes. It bases on the video messages called Highp videos, that can be quickly sent through the SMS without any need of login to the particular platform or account. Companies who offer this solution, like Connectmedica, cooperate with the most recognizable doctors worldwide. These top medical influencers are attending a lot of conferences, and they become the source of the knowledge for the other doctors who are not present. Usually, an attendee records few videos: useful materials before the conference, some highlight during it and recalls just after it. The statistic shows that the open rate of that kind of messages is enormous. In about two hours after receiving, about eighty percent of the recipients open the message. What is more important, it is valuable for the doctors. For nearly ninety percent of them, getting the news from other professor is trustworthy. As being so intuitive, they prefer this type of connection. Not to mention that it is straightforward to profile the needs of doctors and send them only info that is highly recommended for them.
There is a rising demand for the knowledge, exceptionally accessible one. The option of the conference coverage enriched with the video messages is highly attractive. It can even use powerpoint slides to picture the topic better.
Thanks to the ease of getting doctors contact data like their phone number or email address it is more comfortable for the pharmaceutical companies to use the big data solution to even better communicate.
But first and foremost it broadens the audience for the fracture of the typical conference costs. As conferences are usually only marketing and brand awareness events, and sales go only through the medical representatives, in conferencing, you can merge those actions as the reps could efficiently use video messages to show the interesting conference data to the doctors they are cooperating. In 2018 conferencing is present on more than 20 international events like ASCO, EULAR or EADV.
For at least 15 last years, the topic of pharma’s marketing return on investment is a hot one. There are organizations which entirely focus on that matter, making annual conferences and writing reports. It is because the market defined the need quite clearly: to deliver more significant profits from increasingly smaller promotional budgets. 
However, measuring ROI in pharmaceutical marketing is a little bit tricky. It would be perfect to know the exact value of this factor, especially when CMO is talking with CFO on the next year budget. However, the fact is, not all of the marketing goals are easy to count or capitalize. Which part of the marketing budget is countable? The answer is quite simple – conferences. They can absorb even 70 percent of the total marketing spending.
First of all, medicine is a very fast growing branch of science and doctors, both educators and practitioners, need to be up to date with the latest knowledge. Exchange their thoughts, findings, and experiments. Conferences are the best to accumulate all of it in one place and make it in the short period. Labeling such vital gatherings with a pharmaceutical company logo is expected to be beneficial.
Moreover, it is. According to Keyword Pharma report by Dr. Barrie G Jamesdoctors are more keen to prescribe a drug they heard of during an event. It is in their top four decision-making factors, just under such undeniable as being asked for a specific medicine by a patient or being used to prescribing some drug. In this case, we are talking about a sales perspective. However, what about going a little bit deeper? Is it possible to connect conferences to the production process?
It is imperative. None of the drugs could enter the market without the proper research. Moreover, that is made by scientists, doctors who are working at universities and has the knowledge, skills, and reputation to carry out the appropriate tests. For this academics, being a keynote speaker at the major conference is desirable. For the pharmaceutical companies, the higher-ranked scientist to perform drug tests means the easiest way to get all the needed approvals. Benefits are mutual. So pharma wants to pay for the best keynoters available.
On-demand society changes everything
We are living in an on-demand society in which learning new things is quite simple and determined mostly by the internet connection. Almost every knowledge is right there, just one click away. If you would like to read a rare book, not present in any library or bookstore near you or even learn the Etruscan language – you can do it. Whenever you want and wherever you are. However, with the medical subjects, things are a little bit different, and more difficult to reach. We are not talking about some scientific disputes, but the life-changing knowledge that can do much good, but if not understand correctly, can also do immeasurable harm. That is why the medical research took time, and the conferences are the best venues to present findings by its authors and contributors. It is another example of why these meetings are so important for the healthcare development.
Financial drain for pharmaceutical companies
However, on the other hand, organizing such a significant event is a financial drain. Even short, two-day conferences for not more than 300 participants could cost about $ 1 mln. Of course, the top-notch lecturers demand the highest wages, but there are a lot of peripheral expenses that make the final amount goes through the roof. Logistics, hotels, booth makers, staff, security, catering to name the few. Is it possible to cut some of it down? For years it wasn’t an option, but now, the new possibilities appeared on the horizon. Thanks to the latest technologies, a pharmaceutical company could organize top events for a fracture of the original price. Here are some hints.
As all of us probably agree, the conference attendants, both the lecturers and the audience, are the core and the most important added value of the conference. However, should they meet in a real conference room? It is not needed anymore. Some companies are trying to change it and go into the future. Video recording of the sessions is becoming more and more popular. The others try to gather all of the local doctors in one place, like a movie theatre, and then organize live streaming with a famous speaker. Some try to record short interviews and sum-ups with the keynoters and then send it to the audiences, usually weeks after the event. Those are some excellent directions for changes but still not enough. The real future lies in a process that covers more than those single actions.
The future of conferencing
Doctors need some pre-conference materials to get to know the topic and prepare for the central part. Then many highlights during the conference and recalls after it. Only practical solutions could work properly. That is why video messaging like Highp are getting more and more attention. Due to its high open-rate (80% of the doctors watch the video in just 2 hours after getting it) and simplicity – just getting the link via personal SMS, it seems to be the perfect solution. For 90% of the doctors, a video message from the professor is considered to be reliable. Whats more, the simple way of getting it, which not require any particular actions, logins or registrations is making it even more attractive. Last but not least, the messages could be personalized according to the preferences of each doctor.
This conferencing solution is getting more and more users as its credibility goas higher thanks to its presence on the leading conferences, like ASCO, EULAR or EADV, to name just a few. For the pharmaceutical marketing departments, it becomes a tempting alternative to broaden the audience for less than a fracture of an original cost. Once they cope with expensive conferences ending up with getting common effects, now they can extend those costs to a broader group of doctors.
According to the data analysis, conferencing help in building brand awareness and getting the real leads. The knowledge of what do doctors need is also crucial. What is more important, it engages about 55 percent of the physicians. When the keynote speaker is a match, the engagement rate rise to even 72 percent.
When talking about ROI, in this case, it is not even an investment but rather wise decision to be made to reach for more with spending much less.
 Pharmaceutical marketing return-on-investment: a European perspective – Michel Rod, Nicholas J. Ashill, and Janet Carruthers
Anyone who attends conferences knows how crucial it is to be up to date with the newest data. What is even more critical, having a chance to listen to the most influential people and their current findings in the fields we are interested. But it is not effortless.
Conferences as seen from a pharmaceutical company perspective
One of the values of conferences that are crucial for the pharmaceutical companies is to build trust among the doctors. Achieving this goal is easier when the keynote speakers are experts and have a perfect reputation. On the other hand, thanks to an added value, and the ability to deepen doctor’s knowledge, organizers could influence the most ambitious attendants to become a keynote speaker one day. Not to mention that during medical conferences a lot of meetings and a backstage conversation took place, which in connection with the newest knowledge and the up to date research data are the key values for this group.
Both pharmaceutical companies and the doctors are aware of the fact that in today’s digitalized world the masses are dealing the cards. With so many troubles to maintain working and affordable health care system, everyone knows that refundable medicines are the most important ones. But to be a part of this system, the drug needs to have a support from the opinion leaders, which could be built during the conference.
A lot of companies find it crucial to becoming a partner of a significant branch conference, having the proper booth and a chance to make a prelection. Especially for pharmaceutical companies, the expenses for the Continuing Medical Education (CME) are enormous. According to an annual report from the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education, companies from this sector spends more than $700 million on that goal. About half of this spending goes just for the registration fees. It is huge. There are some two-day events that cost a single company about $750 000. 
We are facing a situation in which the majority of company’s marketing budget goes for fees, booths, logistics, travel, hotels and so on. Not to mention providing stuff to handle the conference. What are the outcomes of the enormous financial investment? Unfortunately, in the vast number of cases, potential revenues do not offset the costs incurred. Why is that?
The needs of an attendant
Conference attendants use new technology to peak information that is most important to them. Thanks to event calendars that are present all over the Internet, they can choose the conference that matches their needs the best way. What’s more, equipped with mobile applications, participants can plan their presence on the speeches or accompanying events that suits them best without the need of attending everything the agenda contains.
Shortcuts – the new beginning
It is a significant change, like comparing the old IKEA style. Everyone knows this pattern in which clients went through the whole store until they reached the check-out. The new model, on the other hand, allows you to get to know the exact location of the product you picked before you even leave your home and finally you can use the shortcuts to get them the fastest way.
The same is with conferencing. Let say that you spend a big part of your marketing budget on the proper booth. It may not be a bad idea if it is located on the main route that most of the attendants must walk every time they go for or back from the lecture. But what if you have not so visible but still expensive place in the second or third row? Your opportunities of getting the proper attention are decreasing. It is because people, especially medical doctors, are smart enough to assume that it is your duty to get their attention. On the overcrowded marketplace, and the pharmaceutical industry is one of such, especially in the era of patent cliffs and generic medicines, doctors know that companies will do everything they could do to contact them. So the option of even seeing the pharmaceutical company booth may seem to some them not very important.
How to be remembered
In that case, you may not reach your primary goals which are entering the broad group of doors and building the healthy and impactful relationship with them. What more, due to the vast numbers of companies like your at the conference it is more than possible, that your target group will quickly forget you and your message. A pharmaceutical company could try to gain maximum attention by organizing the conference by themselves, but in this scenario, costs will rocket through the roof. Providing top-notch lecturers is expensive. While the company needs to reach the broad range of the healthcare practitioners, focusing on the few may not be the best solution. Thanks to the new technology, there is a solution.
Virtual Congress – the solution of the 21st century
The most important results of attending the conference are being up-to-date with the newest medical research and getting to know people, which means building face-to-face relationships. With virtual conferencing pharmaceutical company could easily reach both goals or rather provide the benefits of it to doctors, attendants of the event. Seeing the world as a global village is crucial.
Let’s suppose that company would like to target doctors from the US specializing in one medical field. After the research, it cames out that there are some great scientific authorities from Argentina, France, South Africa, Japan and New Zeland. It is usually costly to have them all in one country. With the virtual conference, you don’t need to worry about the logistics and its costs. What is more, you can not only invite few most prominent doctors from around the world but the whole groups from their countries. That could be very important for your US target group. Building a relationship with the colleagues from other nations, that in another case wouldn’t come to the conference. That is an extra benefit which doesn’t make the organization of the conference more expensive.
How does it work?
The future of conferencing is in the video messages. That is how the system works. Virtual Attendants can have access to pre-conference materials – series of videos from the lecturers that could build an image about the topic of the conference speech. Next, during the conference, they get the highlights and after it, series of recalls. It is crucial to maintaining doctor’s interest through the more extended period. It also answers the need of providing knowledge on demand. Congres attendants could access materials whenever they like.
The crucial factor which determines if the virtual congress will end up as a success is simplicity. One of the best solutions provides Highp system. It simplifies the way that video messages get to the final recipient who only needs to have a smartphone without any particular application installed. That is a cost reduction as well.
For decision makers in pharmaceutical companies marketing departments, it is a game-changing ability. Knowing their budgets, they can now spend more time and money on activities that are crucial to generating valuable leads than spending a lot on other people businesses like hotels owner, airlines, booth producers and lots more.
Situation in pharma industry
There are many challenges in the pharma industry nowadays. Patent expiry and loss of revenue from the blockbuster medicine (patent cliff) is one of them. Despite different strategies aiming to prolong a medicine’s lifecycle, patent cliff is inevitable. It becomes also a challenge to replace one blockbuster medicine with a new one, since the complexity of new medicines is higher, research takes more time while the time pressure is very big.
Another important aspect is the communication between a pharma company and a practitioner. Reps seem to be the best solution but in the case, cost effectiveness plays a key role. At the same time, communication via automated tools such as emailing is not effective any more. Doctors receive numerous mails and either they don’t have time to open them or they are bored with this sort of communication. Despite the efforts to make emailing more personalized, the tool assumes mass communication which is less and less involving. It should not be a surprise that its efficiency stays on a very low level.
In a highly competitive pharma industry there is a need to maximize the sales of the existing portfolio within the limited time period. The tools are to be chosen with care as the industry pushes for cost and performance effective digital marketing. One of the market proposals is broader usage of relationship marketing.
Relationship and personalization are key words in the business today. According to Gartner, the year 2018 is likely to become the year of the customer for marketers. With 64% of marketing leaders who report using or showing intent of use of personalization technology, the customer-centric trend is here to stay.[source]The trend is also observed by McKinsey and personalization is called the heart-beat of modern marketing, next to data activation. [source] Relationship marketing is an aspect of customer relationship management (CRM). It places communication between a company and a customer in focus. In the business relation, customers are more of partners in the dialogue and ideally, they should become brand ambassadors one day. The idea is to give customers an added value, show them their importance to the company before one can expect any transaction. The communication with a customer is two-way. Not only does the company communicate the message to the customer but it is also interested in gathering feedback from customers. The move of communication to the digital world was the next, natural step. As a contrast to relationship marketing, one can point transactional marketing which aims at a closing transaction and not establishing any relation with customers.
Market shows that there is a need for high performance digital relationship marketing tool created specifically for the pharma industry. The ideal tool should be up to date and it should use modern channels of communication. Building relationship between reps and practitioners should be simplified. The content, which a practitioner gets, becomes better targeted and much more interesting in terms of tools. It should allow for better communication between the brand and the practitioner. It should allow for quick response to the doctor’s request.
Relationship marketing tool for pharma
As the answer to the demand, Highp comes up and improves communication between a company and a practitioner. Highp is a communication platform to the existing CRM tool in the company. It empowers the marketing and sales team to deliver best Customer Experience (CX) by supplying one unanimous message to the customer. In the highly competitive environment it is important to use channels which are effective but not overcrowded. Highp uses SMS or mail as media. Mobile devices are called by Gartner most popular consumer engagement points these days [source], while Deloitte predicts further that the usage of smartphones will be even more extensive.[source]The real change, however, comes with the fact that more interesting formats can be embedded into communication, such as: personalized videos or presentations. Videos have gained much popularity in social media recently and they are much more impactful than any other format. Videos allow for personalized message in an easy way and shorten a distance in communication between a practitioner and a rep. On the side of the practitioner, there is no receiving barrier since no effort is needed for app installation. The message opens easily on every device: be it a mobile, iPad, PC or MAC. It should be also noted that the flexibility of the tool allows for working within smaller teams as well as large ones.
As noted by McKinsey, technology is at the point where the real-time data can be used in a way that is beneficial for customers and profitable for companies.[source]Highp allows for reaching and communicating with the customer in real time. The same refers to reporting. Highp allows for tracing customers behavior and instant campaign evaluation based on previously set KPIs. The platform allows for option such as ‘call to action’ or decision based presentation (DBE) which makes the interaction between a rep and a doctor more vivid.
From the user’s perspective, Highp platform received very positive feedback: 93% of customers report positive experience with the tool, 55% were engaged in the message communication and 67% requested further contact. Comparing to emailing which has the opening rate of less than 10%, the double-digit figures speak for themselves. The channel used for communication is yet not so much crowded which makes the engagement higher than with other traditional marketing tools.
Deloitte states that “winning and retaining customers in the digital era requires a mix of personalisation, relevance, exclusivity and engagement across all the different channels”.[source] It seems that Highp has found the recipe for the digital relationship marketing tool. The solution has been trusted and implemented by numerous global pharma brands.
The patent cliff is not a new phenomenon for the pharmaceutical industry. The day when the loss of exclusivity happens usually begins the last phase of the drug’s lifecycle. Not to mention, the costly one, with the dramatic price drop as the primary sign of it. Companies use a lot of different strategies to minimalize costs of the patent cliff, but in a digitalized world it is becoming harder.
Quality of the brand
Some of them follow the path of quality. Being the first and well-known producer on the market, you have a brand. And your competitors not. That could work for a while justifying the slightly higher price of your medicine. But in the long run, the distant tail of generic rivals will pave the way to costumers recognition. That means the next price drop.
Another strategy to perform is renewing or broadening the license. It is possible, by making, for example, some molecular modification. That means a lot of additional costs in R&D, drug certification and finally, no one could guarantee that the customers will pay for the new product. If the original one was good enough for them, they might wink at the cheaper, generic competition.
The pharmaceutical industry must go digital
There is one more factor to consider. Digitalization. According to the McKinsey&Company report “The road to digital success in pharma,” pharmaceutical companies should have in mind that the patients are already there: in the digital world. Thanks to health and fitness wearables such as FitBit and Apple Watch patients start to believe in their ability to take responsibility for their health. Knowing how to access online resources to help them do so and becoming less dependent on their doctors for advice they convert into challenging to grasp target.
Pharmaceutical companies are more aware of this fact but only a few tries to follow the trend, mostly because the way is steep and unknown. More questions than answers appear for producers that are on the eve of loss of exclusivity day. If consumers are more independent then ever and don’t necessarily listen to their doctors, what should justify the sales reps expenses? Especially when talking about the products that will soon lose its battlefield to cheaper generics. Pharma doesn’t have proper databases that would help distinguish doctors with more patients trust from others. And the decision to surrender and stop sending med reps or make them not to talk about specific drugs isn’t easy. But in this case, the digitalization trend has the brighter sight too.
The future is video messaging
If a pharmaceutical company face the patent cliff and don’t want to lower the frequency of the med representative’s visits to doctors offices they have an option. It is digital and called video messaging. Pharms, thanks to video communication platforms could keep their impact and lower costs. The significant advantage of this technology is that you can maintain the personal relation your sales representative has with a doctor. You don’t introduce some John Doe, but a trusted partner, only using the new medium.
McKinsey report states that in the United Kingdom, some political parties are working to enable patients to use video software like Skype to call their general practitioners by 2020. Other countries, like for example Poland, are trying to adjust the regulations for patients who are visiting their doctors just to renew the prescription. In coming years they probably will get the prescriptions online. Both cases show that countries are willing to validate digitalization in medicine and for pharmaceutical companies, it is better to be at least one step before.
Simply and trendy
Video messaging seems to be one of the simplest ways to reach medical doctors. Latest Cisco shows that video will absorb 80% of world’s Internet traffic by 2019. And the mobile video will be on the top of it. It is expected to grow from $6.72B in 2017 to $9.90B in 2018. What is essential, there are some companies like gethighp.com that offers simple and easy to use tools which even don’t need a particular application to run. You just record your message and sent it as a link via e-mail, SMS or event on Messenger.
In the times when doctors are becoming more and more digitally connected with patients, med reps shouldn’t be out of it. The newest technology helps to build the firm and trustful relations between them and physicians. It could be used just in time, without losing the time of both parties. It makes it easier to build measurable and trustworthy databases which could influence the strategic decisions of the company. Thanks to the short form of it, you can decide to deliver only the message that is important and do it more frequently comparing to face-to-face meetings that happen not so often. It is the more efficient solution.
As a result, the doctor spends more time with the brand and its message than before. On the other end of this chain, for the pharmaceutical company, it is vital to have one tool that allows them not only to deliver the information but to get all required marketing approvals. It should not only enable sending the news, but it also should provide the option of the online video conference with the physician.
Human-to-human relations is the winning strategy
Finding examples of a patent cliff winners is hard. There are some companies whose product is so specific and hard to manufacture, that their competitors are not willing to even try. But in most cases, generics will get some part of the once protected market. Pharms can try to eliminate unnecessary costs and shift forces to more profitable activities.
What is crucial, the real human-to-human relation is hard to beat. Using video messaging shouldn’t be considered as a fully automated process. On the other side, there is always a real person.
How many times have you heard pharma companies have to switch to digital communication? That they have to engage customers with digital dialogue and become customer-centric? Now, have you done anything with this? No, really, is your company digital or is it just a bolt-on to its business model? If digital is still not a complete approach of your company, you certainly should familiarize yourself with what I’m going to tell you.
Why your company can’t afford traditional marketing?
There are few factors that make traditional marketing expenses. Today’s marketing in pharma industry should be personalized to be effective.
Today, everyone along the pharma value chain (…) has a digital “self” that is generally far more open to sharing in cyberspace than in the real world.
It is a very long and expensive process to get to know your customers in a traditional way. It often requires engaging Key Opinion Leaders in meetings with representatives and increases costs. The number of customers is still growing and it becomes very hard for representatives to keep contact with them. So what to do then? There’s no other way than to adopt digital solutions to empower representatives. And as mentioned in Time for Pharma to Dive into Digital, even partial adoption of digital can reduce promotional costs by between 20 and 50%. [source]
There’s one more important thing. Customers are becoming very aware of their needs and they actively look for services to fulfill them. Nowadays, almost everyone is online, and it is very important for pharma to understand that customers’ expectations and behaviors were shaped by the other sectors. They search for information on the Internet, and pharma needs to accept that it’s not going to change anytime soon. So the big challenge for the industry is to be where the customers are – in the digital world.
One of the greatest advantages of digital solutions is automation of communication, which eases representatives’ work, and saves their time – automated communication sends adjusted message to the particular client at the right time. Today’s reps have so many clients can take care of more clients, with less effort. Another big advantage of digital solutions is they allow for tracking user’s activity and interests, so your company gets insights at almost no cost.
It’s not so difficult to become digital if a company follows few basic rules. First, digital must become a guiding principle in the company. The entire organization has to be engaged in the process of transformation and it should be supported by the management. Employees need to understand why the transformation is so important to the company and use technology in everyday work. It’s a task for leaders to understand the digital world, make sure company needs to be a part of this dialogue and to lead the company into the new territory. The second rule is that the company needs to act fast, as technologies and regulations change rapidly. It is very important to be agile and react to these changes and to manage risk. The third rule says it’s necessary to observe competitors as well as outside-pharma industry organizations, as they are a great source of insights (and the same time a source of threats). Now, if your company is ready for transformation there’s one more essential rule – never settle for one thing. Experiment, but remember about the scale of these experiments – they should be large enough to be memorized and easy to adapt to the whole organization. Small pilots are often a waste of time, not only because they quickly get forgotten, but also because they don’t bring any spectacular effects.
Digital life cycles are very short, often measured in months. Organizations need to be agile – experimenting, adapting, and moving on – and this can be a real problem for many pharma companies.
Digitalization surely is a trend but one thing is obvious – not following this trend might be expensive and bring a lot of trouble for companies. So it’s time to decide what to do with this fact and how to build a proper strategy.
Conference. If you begin to shake every time someone says this word because you know how much effort it costs to show your company up at such event and how miserable effects it brings, it means you are the right person to receive this message. We understand you.
Too many tasks, too little time
We know that when you think about a medical conference, your actions focus on how people will see your company at the exhibition hall – your booth, fliers, booklets, etc. And of course, participating in conferences and congresses and the way your company presents itself plays an important role in creating brand awareness but…
Well, there are few “buts”. First of all – where’s your audience? Did you invite them to the event? Yeah, ok, you emailed them but did they open the message? Did they like your message? Secondly, will they show up at the conference? How long will they remember your company?
It is extremely important to remember that the lifetime of information is very short. According to Ebbinghaus Forgetting Curve, people lose around 70% of what they have learned just 3 days after the event. And when it comes to your clients, you don’t want them to forget about your company, do you? The solution is very simple – remind the clients about you after the conference! Look at the Forgetting Curve below. If you provide a proper follow-up, your audience will remember you immediately.
Introducing Conferencing solution
We divided medical conference activities into 3 phases to make event promotion more efficient. First, you need to plan your actions and collect customer opt-ins. In the pre-conference phase, your main challenge is to increase awareness of your brand and engage your audience. We provide integrated tools to build a detailed database – Datuso– and initiate the communication – Highp.
Then there’s the conference. Usually, it’s more than just one-day event, and to differentiate yourself, you have to be one step further than other companies. Think of the daily highlights from the conference, wouldn’t be that nice to receive brief info on the most important information via SMS and emails when you’re back in your hotel? As they say, repetition is the mother of all learning – that’s why we deliver more and more via Highp messages.
Speaking of the repetition – it’s quite usual that companies end their conference activity on the last day of the event. To stay remembered it is highly important to keep the communication ongoing, for example by sending Highp follow up messages weekly. Your company may also attach interactiveDBEpresentations, video commented by Key Opinion Leaders, to increase the credibility of the communication.
There’s another advantage of Connectmedica’s conferencing solution – you may use once built database during future medical conferences and stay remembered longer than others.
In modern marketing gaining leads from your campaign is as crucial as campaign itself. You push message to gain personal requests from your customers. We use for this Call To Action buttons and all actions that customer can interact with message and presentation. In real-time.
Empowering your representatives
We all believe that people-to-people relation in business is still crucial. In the pharmaceutical industry, it is almost impossible to run product promotion without field force. The process of transferring knowledge and changing the behavior of your customer is long term and risky investment. We believe that modern representative can be much more efficient with new set of tools in his iPad or iPhone from Highp
Automation in real-time
The magic will happen behind the courtains. If you create a message, include call to action button, you can design reaction of the system to each customer actions.
You can inform your field force representative about next call request or automaticaly send further messages to your customer. Perfectly alignt to customer demand.
Highp changes the way pharmaceutical industry communicate with customers pushing the envelope of effectiveness to the next lever.
Our mission is to extend relationship with customer (HCPs) beyond the face to face visit.
Highp implicates the new trend, using what’s the most effective – multichannel, personalization, mobile devices and video. All of that together increases the performance of marketing and sales teams up to 55% average engagement rate.
Highp stands for high performance
Highp digital relationship marketing platform is created for the companies which focus on the relationship with customers as the priority, so they can reach their customers fast and effectively beyond face to face meetings. Highp messages are being opened within 2 hours from sending. Depending on database quality and a relationship between the representative and clients, the Highp engagement rate is between 25%-65%. Customer’s positive satisfaction rate of using Highp is 90%! In fact, Highp is highest ranked messaging tool comparing to email, call center, and plain SMS.
Advantages of Highp
Highp is highly effective thanks to unique smart design:
Highp uses both channels: SMS and e-mail
Customer opens Highp rich media messages on any device. No app installation is required.
Highp sends messages on behalf of representative and automagically is highly personalized
Each Highp message may include personal video introduction from the key opinion leader or representative to the customer
Highp is safe – you can easily disable message by message or change content after being distributed
Highp allows the customer (HCPs) to get back to previous messages
Highp offers analytics
Highp delivers pre-approved content only
Better than email or text
The fundamental difference between email or SMS and Highp is an innovative distribution process and analytics. To mimic Highp you have to use multiple platforms. Highp is the smart solution to deliver rich media messages and gather important feedback to deliver another aligned message. Start the digital dialog through predefined pathways.
Complete control and security over communication with a customer
Another key feature enables representatives in digital to send pre-approved personalized messages to customers. It is up to the representatives when they want to send a message from the available campaigns aligning the communication to the customers’ needs.
Everything goes through a server, so the message is always visually rich, safe – only the recipient can see it. The server follows all consumer’s activity.
Highp is also a tool which creates a spectacular follow-up, realizes webinars, creative product launch, enriches landing pages… The sky is the limit.
Insight is the key
It is more than obvious that e-mail has a serious competition, which brings digital communication to the new level, unavailable for email or call center. Highp is integrated with the biggest CRM and Marketing Automation systems. Thanks to Call to Action options and full analytics, companies using Highp can effectively collect insights, both declarative and nondeclarative. It is an essential function, especially in professional sectors, such as banking, pharmaceutical industry or e-commerce.
Time to implement
Highp is already used in 22 countries (and growing) by the leading pharmaceutical companies.
Last decade’s global financial crisis forced big companies to brutally cost-cut on marketing and advertising. Lean Management divisions filled corporate space, it was all about the economy. Nowadays markets are slowly recovering from the breakdown, still, most companies seek new, profitable sales tools.
As sales director or product manager, you are probably looking forward to economizing on your sales force. The best way of accomplishing this is to complete the representative – client face to face contact with mobile device tools. In the US, mobile advertising is projected to increase to $28.48 billion in 2015. According to CMO Council site research, 28% of marketers have already reduced their advertising budget to fund more digital marketing. The key is to effectively balance multi-channel campaign expenses.
What is the range of expenses allocated to sales force work?
Let’s make an equation on the example of medical reps hired by global companies. Their yearly pays are usually very attractive and consist of base and bonus, giving a total of 140 000 dollars in the US, 40 000 pounds in the UK and even 70 000 euro in Spain for an experienced employee. As I learned from my friend engaged in the Polish pharma industry, big companies pay a sum of around 15-20 000 zlotys monthly for a representative. Assuming the rep has 5-8 daily visits in hospitals and private clinics, the real value of one visit comes up to 50 euros.
Of course, client’s contact and his trust are priceless… Or do they have a measurable cost? What if I told you the same representative – physician communication could be done for the price of less than 10 euro?
Email is not enough
‘Email and SMS, we know all of that’- you will think – ‘SMS with high open rates or emails filled with attachments, nothing new…’ Has that crossed your mind?
If your answer is yes, please keep in mind the following facts: SMS can contain only 160 characters and are therefore used mainly to inform about a promotion, drive clients into a store or offer a coupon. Emails give the opportunity to send rich content, but only a few clients will actually read them. A pharma marketer needs a combination of both: valuable e-mail content + SMS sending channel PLUS the thing making content outstanding compared to the other sales campaigns.
This thing could be a personalized video recorded by your Key Account Manager or representative and sent to the client with Highp video messaging platform. This solution replaces most face to face sales visits by personalized video messages followed by various product attachments like PDF, PP, docs. No need to engage your rep to travel each time there is new content to deliver. Normal sales contacts require about five representative visits in order to drive physician focus on the product. You can do the same with one Highp campaign.
According to Smart Insights Email Marketing Statistics for 2015, emails from the healthcare sector obtain a 23% open-rate. One email sent to a physician from exterior database costs 25 cents. This seems ok, but in reality, the messages do not engage recipients, as only 3 % are clicked-through. So about 33 emails would be needed in order to have the certitude your client opened the email. Total cost: 82,5 euro. And you have to pay no matter the effect.
Highp is the most reasonable choice for sales campaigns. It lets you get extremely high open-rates for a very good price and our cost policy ensures you pay only for the messages which succeed. All that for one reason – when our client is happy with what he gets, we are happy with what we do.
Marketing automation (MA) has become the key to success in building a relationship with clients. As the company grows, there’s no chance to maintain 1:1 relationship with every customer. Many can say that automation excludes any personalization, but that’s not true – MA helps to reach the right people at the right time, and it is more user-friendly than any other communication method.
According to Nucleus Research [source], it drives a 14,5% increase in sales productivity and reduces marketing overhead by 12,2%. However, it isn’t a piece of cake – there are a few steps every marketer needs to walk through. These steps are a base for building a good MA strategy.
Setting a marketing automation strategy
To implement marketing automation successfully, your company has to know the customer’s profile first. This step is about using collected data to segment the communication – to automate the communication it’s necessary to know when and how often messages should be sent, who should receive them, what kind of messages they should get and which channel is most effective for the particular recipient. It’s essential to keep the data up-to-date, as customers change their contact details, workplace or interests.
The next very big step is creating content. It’s very common that companies start their marketing automation programs with too few materials and quickly run out of content or forget that messages. In such programs must be adjusted to the customer’s needs and send too many not-so-interesting communicates.
But sooner or later marketing automation is all about software. There are plenty of MA solutions offered on the market, but most of them are quite complicated to use.
59% of companies admit they do not fully use the technology they have available.
Almost one third (32%) of marketers surveyed in the Marketing Automation Trends Survey 2016 say that MA is very successful at achieving marketing goals. 59% of them rated it as “somewhat successful”. And what are the most important goals for them?
Measuring performance of marketing automation, companies usually check conversion rate, revenue generated, leads generated and engagement.
It seems that marketing automation should be – the same as personalization – the next priority for Pharma. It’s an endless source of information about customers and converts into improving business on a daily basis.
56% of B2B sales are primarily initiated by telemarketing. That’s a whole lot of business to business potential, don’t you think? So, stats prove this technique is effective but is it liked? To do marketing properly, you need to feel your promotional actions are just right. Marketing is emotions – we all use this basic truth to influence our customer on the B2C level. But what about our own feelings towards marketing campaigns? Which telemarketing styles or tools do we prefer and why? I asked marketers and consumers on their opinion.
Ursula, Generalist Physician: ‘I receive several phone calls as part of telemarketing campaigns from pharmaceutical companies, but most of them occur while I’m working and this really bothers me. Also, I suspect that in case of any additional product questions from my side, these marketers would not be able to provide any details, as they do not have a medical formation.’- she says. ‘I also receive emails from representatives which visit me face to face, but I would sincerely prefer SMS promotion channel, as I use my private mobile at work and each email viewing requires internet usage, which means costs.’- she explains.
‘SMS campaigns are short and concrete’ – summarizes Dorothy, marketing manager in a Swedish bank – ‘that’s what I like the most about them, they fit my communication style’- she adds. Many managers support Dorothy’s opinion: ‘our latest SMS campaign received a 51% open-rate. I trust these reports. The best thing about SMS marketing is the positive, innovative side. Of course, the texts need to be good quality, beautiful messages, not just any SPAM’- she explains. ‘But the main quality in favor of this marketing type is speed. I like the thought my company is probably first to reach the client’.
Does this mean marketing agencies sell a lot of SMS marketing services?
‘It has been said for the last three years that SMS campaigns would be a revolution in marketing, but it really started to incite major interest only during last year.’- says Warsaw promotion agency owner. ‘Marketers gladly wander around unexplored multichannel areas and the SMS fashion enhances more and more people to buy smartphones. Project managers trust this technique, as open-rates are very high and call-to-action buttons create instant leads. I gladly observe niche SMS campaign usages, e.g. for small, regional campaigns dedicated only for district habitants.’ – adds the entrepreneur.
It looks as if most marketing and project managers enjoy testing new promotional channels and clients also like receiving them. SMS telemarketing biggest pros: speed of delivery, variety of attachments, instant call-to-action. So what are you waiting for?
Conferences, congresses, and symposiums are a crucial part of pharmaceutical marketing activities. At the same time, it is very important for pharmaceutical companies to participate, especially if they have a new product that they are bringing on the market or have some new research they are going to share. These are big opportunities for the pharmaceutical companies which can’t be missed out. However pharmaceutical companies don’t always have an influence on how big percentage of the invited population will attend or how much time they can spend with Health Care Professionals. It is also a big cost. Many companies spend even 2 – 4 million euro on investing on these congresses and events over a year. Conferencing focuses on getting the biggest return on investment.
Tools providing a digital service at medical conferences are a necessary addition to standard conference activities.
Build your own, complete service, based on the Conferencing tools provided by Connectmedica and engage 45%-75% of HCPs in your target group.
Enter into relations with your receivers and build contact database
Get to know your receivers’ expectations and opinions
Ask physicians about their needs and interests
Promote effectively after the conference
Keep a tight-knit contact delivering valuable content
Conferencing is a complete service delivered to doctors, on a basis of sponsored medical events. This modern service for pharmaceutical companies meets marketing targets such as:
Collecting up-to-date database with consents for processing personal data
Building brand image, based on innovations
Engaging doctors effectively before, during, and after the conference
Effective return on investment with relatively low costs, Conferencing allows for a significant increase of promotional ROI
Step by step how to introduce Conferencing in your team
Create the list of events you plan to participate in.
Contact your consultant at Connectmedica – consultant will create a program, adjusted to your conference activities: collecting data and opt-ins, pre-conference activities, conference activities or post-conference activities.
Learn the fundamentals of Connectmedica solution – risk balance, number of communique, HCPs exposure to the brand, full database service and learn how we can help with overcoming the Ebbinghaus Forgetting Curve.
Use our help to create business cases and content – we will recruit Key Opinion Leaders for your service
As mentioned before, the goal for Conferencing solution is to change the way that we look at conferences and events and redefine this opportunity. We want to get a wider percentage of Health Care Professionals involved. During the event we make sure to keep our promise to deliver a service to be able to provide daily highlights of that international event or Congress to Health Care Professionals, making sure that we are touching a wider population of the HCP universe and taking some pressure off of not just focusing on physicians that are able to attend but making sure that we are able to hit the targets that are not able to attend because of various reasons. We have an opportunity to engage them a little bit further and keep that relationship going.
It is well known that today’s sales model should be focused on the customer, not on the product. The decision on whether to make a purchase is usually based on the overall experience of a client with a company or a brand. For the pharma industry, it is more than obvious that using digital communication is the future of shaping the customer experience. Many marketers are trying to implement new technologies to improve their business, but the key to success lies in building a strong relationship with a customer. A relationship which converts into sales.
Most companies are only at the beginning of creating comprehensive customer-insights programs.
To build a relationship with customers, it’s becoming necessary for companies to offer a proper omnichannel communication service. There’s still a big gap in understanding what this means, but the sure thing is that it shouldn’t only be a tool for collecting customer insights. Providing such a service requires a good communication strategy with developed automation of the processes where human intervention isn’t necessary, and the messages are personalized. The communicates must be easy to understand for the customers and rather focused on opportunities which bring the company and its products to the attention of the client. The biggest issue for companies remains to show the added value that customers get when purchasing their products.
Digital dialogue in personalizing marketing
Omnichannel marketing is not about the technology – it is about recognizing touch points with clients. Nearly 40 percent of pharma companies admit they don’t understand the customer decision journeys well enough to map digital touch points and tailor a digital strategy [source]. These statistics show that the pharma industry may have trouble collecting insights or cannot process them. Another troubling factor is that the pharma industry is changing rapidly and so designing and managing the customer experience becomes very complex. So where to start?
Personalized marketing is a two-way street: the customer provides signals – information about his or her needs and intentions (…) The company responds to the signal with a relevant and timely message, which we call a trigger, that is sent to the individual customer.
First of all, a company must leave the “push” model of sales and marketing and switch to a “pull” model – based on customer engagement. And what exactly is engaging customers? It is precisely the action of addressing their needs and frustrations and delivering the right aligned message, at the right time. Proper recognition of the client’s behavior allows for implementing real-time automation of communication, which is very important in holding the dialog. A fundamental to automation is designing a proper communication flow, which leads to increasing reactions and decreasing costs. As pointed in the National client email report 2013 prepared by DMA, over 75% of email revenue is generated by triggered campaigns, rather than one-size-fits-all campaigns. Automated email campaigns account for 21% of email marketing revenue [source].
A study conducted by Forrester Consulting [source] in July 2016 on a group of 100 marketers from the USA and Western Europe, shows that 67% of marketers use behavior-based data to develop the right content based on insights and emotions, and 64% of them use customer data to create individualized content and offers on a channel-specific basis. However, 61% of marketers surveyed point that the biggest challenge with content creation is to deliver more content on demand across channels. Marketers admit their companies still struggle to measure the impact of content creation because of three reasons: lack of skills and/or knowledge, lack of tools and lack of staff.
It is highly important for the companies to remember few rules and implement them in their digital strategy. First of all, is always pull and never push your customers – listen what they need and respond to these needs. Personalize and tailor your communication and, last but not least, measure the impact of your campaigns, not only open rate.
We are all witnessing a process of transformation in recruitment.
The economic world crises of 2008 got us used to an employer’s market and tightening the belt. Filling a vacancy for recruiters was a piece of cake. Luckily harsh times have passed and the economy has managed to recover. Unemployment has been shrinking and more jobs are available on the market. The market advantage has shifted to the employee.
We could open Champaign with happiness, however, what does the employee’s market mean for talent acquisition professionals and recruiters?
Now is the time where the best-qualified applicants get multiple job offers and can be picky. Therefore it is getting more difficult to flood your company with top talent. There is no doubt that e-mail is a top communication channel in the recruiting field. However, this channel is also the most cluttered. Imagine your perfect applicant sitting in front of his/her computer checking an e-mail post.
Can you guess how many messages he/she gets with job offers?
The answer is: too many. If your e-mail is one of many others, it is highly possible that it will be unnoticed. What to do to break your offer through the noise? We need to understand the target group and what will catch their attention the most.
By 2020 the Millennials generation will account for 50% of the workforce around the world[source].
There is no surprise that this new generation is taking over the market but companies must be well prepared for answering their needs. Generation shifts at companies demand a change in work culture and organization. So which aspects should recruiters focus their full force?
Focus on innovations. Millennials have grown up with new technologies. At times of war for talent, your recruiting process should stand out. Awake their curiosity to your brand from the very beginning.
Make it personalized. Believe me, your offer is more likely to be memorable if the candidates see that the message they receive is crafted for them.
Build strong Employer Branding. Focus on a long-term strategy. It is worth investing money in marketing tools which will successfully support Your Employer Branding.
You may wonder how to put this information into practice? My suggestion to you is:
Deliver your message to an applicant not only by e-mail but also by mobile text (SMS).
Make it unique by enclosing personalized video in which HR Specialist invites applicants to the interview. Such video messages highly support Your branding strategy and show your professional attitude and commitment to the recruiting process. Furthermore, videos for business has become the most powerful way of business communication[source]. Squeeze the lemon and make full use out of it.
Introduce top talent to your company. Use a wide range of multimedia to present information you want to share using videos, graphics or short presentations.
Focus on job seekers’ interests. You may prepare automatic follow up communique by collecting this data.
Do not forget to keep in touch with applicant after the interview. You may send him/her a video message with, for example, thank-you note or congratulations for getting a job in your company. Why not send a welcome message to the new team member with a short video from the CEO?
The ideas listed above are easy to implement with a marketing tool called Highp.
Not so easy if you want to take the long way with traditional multichannel tools (emailing, text messaging, video html5, RWD and more capabilities are necessary to make this work perfectly and provide great customer experience).
Highp messages put emphasis on a user-centric approach and implement a pull model based on user engagement. This all-in-one omnichannel communication platform is dedicated for forward-looking companies ready to invest in strong employer branding.
Contact with Connectmedica consultants to get personal webinar and pilot offer.
Stop chasing top talents, make them chase you.
Improving customer satisfaction in hospital or doctor’s office is not an easy job. You need to connect all the technical dots to start working based on your customer journey. Highp comes with a simple handy solution that any hospital can setup and design.
The goal – quality and patient service improvement.
We want to enable quick, direct and personalized communication which supports both physicians and administrators of the medical unit with patients. We offer the platform that works in an extremely easy and modern way.
Step by step improvement process.
Patient registers on the digital platform by filling out a special form which allows adding a handwritten signature for data processing and acceptance. This data is stored and used only by given medical units without any interference from third parties. You can use Android or Apple devices to collect opt-ins and patient insights. Highp app for opt-in and insight collection called Datuso will be installed on devices and synced in real time with the platform.
Highp provides a web version of opt-in and insight form to so you can insert it easily into website too.
After a physician’s appointment, the patient gets a personalized and modern video message on his/her mobile with a thank-you note and a request for filling out a satisfaction survey. A video message is prepared by the treating physician or by medical unit administrators responsible for quality service. A patient can fill out a survey in which he/she can evaluate the appointment and present his expectations for future appointments.
All data gathered from patients is saved in real time and passed on to the administrator who has up to date records. Whenever a patient negatively evaluates his/her appointment, the medical unit is able to react quickly and clarify the situation. Given information helps medical units to avoid such situations in the future and at the same time improves the quality of client service.
The satisfaction survey can be modified and extended with additional elements. Subsequently, consecutive messages can automatically be sent out to patients who already received a video message in order to emphasize customer care. Such processes highly support customer engagement and play an important role in influencing loyalty to the medical unit.
Additional information such as future appointments or procedures before the specific medical examination can be added to the video messages at any time.
The Highp allows sending out messages with information about
practical information how to prepare for a visit in the hospital
current and planned health campaigns.
educational programs to help patients look after their health
support the patient journey.
customer satisfaction queries
procedure and drug reminders
Gain more vital information about emotional and engagement score of your service. You will discover quickly how important for your customer is complete, aligned to their needs, direct communication process.
Highp Engagement Platform offers dedicated app called “Datuso” for perfect opt-in. App can be installed on your representative ipad or iphone. You can install that app on Conference Host ipad, to acquire more new customers during conferences.
Why you need Datuso?
Sync process is bulletproof. You will never loose data.
All data is synced in real time – if you are online – in background
All changes are tracked field by field
Connect your app with automation and send automatic invitations or responses based on detailed fields in forms
You can change your form in real time from web admin panel
Keep your data tidy. We save external-ids to update your masterdata (salesforce, ims, veeva, other crm)
There is no doubt that the email marketing era is about to end. Customers seek more engaging forms of communication. According to Cisco, by 2019, 80% of traffic on the internet will be used on videos [source]. So here’s the next big thing for business communication – using videos for business purposes can increase conversion by 80%.
82% of marketers noticed a positive impact of video marketing on their business.
There are plenty of expectations for videos, depending on the audience or where they are watched. Forbes surveyed 300 C-level and senior executives, to find out their attitude towards using videos in business. They admit that when searching for work-related videos, they most often seek out business news (74%), then KOL advice (64%), speeches and presentations (57%), case studies (56%) and product reviews (54%). Majority of them agree that they watch a video first, if it covers the same subject text does. 65% of them declare they visited a vendor’s website after watching the video [source].
Research shows that video communication is a great solution for B2B, especially for decision makers such as executives. But creating more and more video content is not enough.
Rather than using video exclusively as a storytelling mechanism, think of it as a tool for storymaking, in which consumers get to take part.
Videos, same as any other type of content, must be aligned to customer’s needs so the customer chooses to watch it – and the more personalized the video, the better. Customers point out that the most preferred length of business videos are between 3-5 minutes (47% of surveyed executives). 36% of them prefer shorter videos: between 1-3 minutes. You may think it’s not enough but according to Forrester analytic, James L. McQuivey, one minute of video is worth 1,8 million words…
Video vs video
But let’s widen the picture. Video is not only about posting on YouTube or advertising on a company’s website any more. Today’s digital tools allow for fast and effective video communication with clients but many ask if it’s necessary or how it works. For example, to fulfill growing Pharma customer demands and build a strong relationship, representative or KOL can send a short video. The most important advantage of such videos is they seem natural and that customers can see the sender’s body language, so the communication seems to be more personal – and that’s the crucial factor in the era of relationship marketing.
Say goodbye to email
Let’s follow some statistics: The average open rate for email in pharma industry is 19% [source]. Adding a video to the email can cause boost of click-through rates even by 200% – and customers who have viewed the video are 1.7 times more likely to buy the product than customers who haven’t. But the email channel is very cluttered and engagement is poor. Companies should focus on solutions increasing open rate and engagement.
A great example of a tool allowing for 1-1 video communication between the representative and customer is Highp, powered by Connectmedica. Highp is a business video messaging system which combines videos with other components, such as images, hyperlinks, presentations, Call To Action, etc., sent through texts and emails. Using the SMS channel is a great advantage – not only is it less cluttered than email, it’s more personal as well.
Clearly, videos are becoming more and more popular – both for private and business users. It is up to companies how they use this knowledge. But one thing is sure: creating video content is not enough. The question is how to deliver it to the customers, to engage them properly.
Highp, the gold sponsor of eyeforpharma Barcelona 2017 is happy to share with you a presentation “Physicians’ Perspective on Omnichannel” which took place during the eyeforpharma conference and was a spectacular success.
The presentation was delivered by Dr. Slawomir Chomik, M.D., Ph.D. at Institute of Cardiology and Michael Komorniczak, Global Sales Director for Highp.
The secret of high open-rates – marketers would kill for it… Sell their souls for a simple rule boosting their e-mail clickability 40 or even 30 %. They could certainly use a good tip, so let’s help them out and analyze.
What do we know Customer problems?
First truth: the longer your recipient list, the lower your open-rate. A possible reason for this is because smaller companies are more likely to have personal relationships with their subscribers.
Secondly, people prefer to read content from organizations they belong to or support, like churches, foundations, and sports teams.
Furthermore, the more specific and narrow your topic, the more your message will be viewed. As for sending time, 50% of opens occur within the first 6 hours after the email is sent, and 80% in 48 hours.
Now 5 Tips that will help you reach the customer with 55% open-rate (using Highp tool). Notice: Highp messages are sent as links and received via SMS (recipient just requires a smartphone) and e-mail.
And by that, I do not mean a simple email with Dear mr.X greeting on the top. Of course, you can play it this way and model yourself onblogs but… that’s passé. Who reads spam with their name in the title? You don’t.
What kind of personal greeting is actually credible in marketing? In the studied case physicians had regular contact with representatives, so the relationship had already been personal. This contact was leveraged to add personalized video greetings; the representatives recorded messages, like: ‘Hello Mrs. Yand, it was great seeing you yesterday. I am now sending you some additional info about the product we discussed’.
The video greeting is a smart novelty, very powerful in marketing, sales or education. Depending on campaign purposes, it can be recorded by product managers, marketers, thought leaders or salespeople.
Obvious of the obvious. And yet, let me repeat. Highp campaign consisted of various content forms: video message with content “teaser”, short message and attachments including Power Point presentations, PDF files, images, and text. This way, marketing content becomes highly interesting.
A message for everyone is good for no one. Be sure to adapt your content to a specific group of recipients! Do NOT bombard teachers with construction gear publicity. Craft your message using language and topic which are understandable for your chosen group and take the time to pick only the right contacts from your list.
Notify about campaign BEFORE it takes place
Highp messages were anticipated because representatives told physicians they would receive some news soon. A telemarketing campaign supported the whole action.
If you wish to increase open-rates, inform your customers about the upcoming campaign and get their opt-ins.
Tuesday afternoon – according to surveys, it’s the perfect moment for high open-rates. Sadly, this period is also considered to be THE worst time of the week for most of us due to emotional and professional stress. Important: As for this point you still have to conduct research on your target group. Maybe their work or social specific slightly differs from the average and another day would be more suitable?
So here you have five essential tips to remaster your sales campaign and boost your open-rates. You can do it step by step on your own, or use a creative tool, like Highp.
Highp – High-performance video messaging tool designed to deliver personalized content to your customer, just in time.
Rich media is taking over digital advertising. But to use them properly it’s necessary to understand what drives the real value and what is only the fancy addition. And what most people think is hidden behind the rich media term?
Well, usually it’s associated with video content, and obviously it is a main “catch”, however, it’s very important to remember there’s a lot more to offer to the customers. And as trends in marketing change every day, so the form of promotion should. Today’s consumers are very overwhelmed with the number of advertisements they are surrounded with, especially those which don’t fit their interests and those which surprise them with unwanted interactive content (such as those with too loud, automatically played videos). It is now more than ever – quality over quantity. Though I hope that you haven’t crossed video off from your marketing to do list yet – according to Cisco, by 2019, 80% of traffic on the Internet will be used on videos [source], so it’s more about how to make it effective than how to replace it. And to increase its effectiveness you need to do just two things: personalize and automate it.
“The key to successful online video campaign is understanding that video spot on the internet does not fulfill users’ needs. They expect something more. They expect what rich media can offer.”
However, as I mentioned before, rich media is not only about video. Let’s get a closer look on a great example of what they are and what they can – introducing High-performance business messaging system. Highp is an omnichannel communication system which allows for advanced messaging and holding digital dialog between the customer and company real time. How does it work? A company starts a new campaign. It can be sent to the clients by representatives or centrally, on a behalf of them. Customers get synergic notifications via text and e-mail, containing a link to the website. After clicking on the link, a proper message will appear.
The message sent by a representative may contain a short welcoming video, where rep can tell the client what the message is about and refer to the previous message or the last meeting. It is a very simple (and low cost) way to build a strong relationship with customers. To engage them even more in the communication and get instant feedback, a company can ask for rating the video. If something went wrong and the feedback is negative, a rep can react immediately.
Everyone knows that message should be sexy to interest the audience. Highp allows for adding many attractive components to the message, e. g. navigation bar with company’s logo, cover photo and thumbnails, sender information, quotations, videos and much more.
But the most interesting components are those allowing users to interact. Imagine you’re a doctor attending to a two-day conference organized in a city you’ve never been to. All you need to know before the conference is in the Highp invitation you get, within few clicks distance. If you’re driving a car or using public transportation, you can click on the google maps and get directions; if you’re not registered to the Congress, you can click on the link and you’ll be switched to the registration website; in the attached PDF file, you can see the agenda of the Congress, and – if you have any special requirements – you can just click on one of the Call-To-Action buttons and someone will contact you and fulfill your needs at the Congress.
After the first day of the Congress, you’ll get an overnight report, containing interactive DBE presentation, video-commented by the Key Opinion Leader. If you want, you can take part in a quiz challenge, to check on your knowledge.
Rich media hold users longer. It’s like playing with technology – they have fun clicking on interactive components and they wait to see what’s going to happen. And the longer exposition to the brand, the bigger conversion to sales.
The pharmaceutical industry went through a massive transformation over last few years. There’s a significant impact of digitalization noticeable in the way companies communicate with their customers. Today’s communication is no longer limited to sending messages – it’s all about delivering an experience to the clients. Statistics indicate that the most common way of communication is still email, even though the average open rate for emails is only around 19%. While the pharmaceutical market is changing fast, companies should focus on building an innovative service for clients, based on various channels.
How to empower communication?
The key to success in communication lies in personalization and automation.
Still, there’s a significant role for the representatives in the company-customer communication.
Reps can be effective messengers for digital messages. Doctors are far more likely to open an email that comes directly from their pharmaceutical rep (35% will open such correspondence) than if it comes from the manufacturer (3%). [source]
But the email channel is getting less effective every day. Not only is it cluttered – it doesn’t allow for the ability to hold a digital dialogue between a company and its customers.
While companies are struggling to segment their clients and target their communication, the real challenge is how to start interacting with clients, so the company gets to know what they really need. So here’s the question…
Has your company already used other communication channels and increased its message open rate by up to 55%?
There’s a digital race among the biggest pharma companies. In the era of online marketing, companies must focus on unique solutions which combine rich visual effects, true personalization, automation and which allow building a relationship with customers. This is all so they can create a customer-driven service. An example of such a solution is Highp – a modern omnichannel tool for marketing and sales teams.
Using Highp, your company sends communiqué via emails and text messages.The SMS channel is less cluttered. Also, texts are more personal than emails so recipients open them more often [source].
If you already wonder how much more revenue personal text messages will generate, you should hear more of High Performance messaging for business.
More about Highp
Highp is much better than sending 160 characters – you send a personalized notification with a hyperlink. There’s no need to install any app – just click on it, and your customer gets a full message with a welcome video from the representative, predefined videos, pictures, presentations – all they need in just one message. But there’s another essential aspect of Highp communication – two-way dialogs thanks to “Call to Action” buttons, which allow to collect insights, build advanced customer profiles and automate communication. Fully tailored communication!
So this is exactly what companies should do to increase their open rate even by 11 times and convert it to more sales.
There are many things you can do to enhance your communication with Healthcare Professionals and drive their attention to your product or educational campaign. In fact, technical novelties empower you with the possibility to base your entire promotion on one smart application.
Highp is a good example of digital marketing communication tool used by top global pharma companies. Basing on real campaigns conducted with the use of Highp in 2015, we have selected top nine effective techniques to catch the doctor’s eye and attention:
Highp campaigns are sent viaSMS or e-mail with a link directing the receiver to a short personalized video, text message and rich attachments in PDF and PP.
Send the physician an innovative expert bulletin on his mobile.
This brochure should contain expertise articles in the field of new medication, treatment methods or therapy success stories. Thanks to Highp, all this will be preceded by an entertaining intro video recorded by Key Opinion Leader, expert in the field. If the doctor wants to know more on the subject, he is invited to send a ‘I have further questions’ request. Studies prove such multichannel marketing gets around 35% open-rate and 90% positive feedback among recipients.
Invite the doctor to an educational session taking place on a conference
It’s easy – collect telephone numbers to physicians participating in the event and send out video invitations to a specific lecture, discussion or work-shop. Add some materials about the event and just wait for the guests to appear! Afterwards, you can summarize the session with another Highp message.
If you have medical representatives in the field, equip them with personalized video follow-ups
This is the newest generation of mobile marketing, as 2016 will be about video and who uses it effectively. Salespeople can deliver valuable information about the product in Highp messages and doctors view them on mobile in their free time. But, what is key to this follow-up contact – your representative will maintain close relations with the Healthcare Professional. How? By sending that particular physician a video dedicated to him. It could look like this: ‘Dear Doctor, after the last meeting we held, I would like to share more interesting materials about our product with you. I really enjoyed our conversation on international vaccination policies. Let’s continue the topic next time!’
Strengthen relations with the physician by sending him occasional Highp video greetings followed by a beautifully crafted card.
Pharma marketing must-have! Provide physicians, who could not make it to an important event, with the most important, relevant outcomes from an international conference or symposium. Keep them informed by sending live or daily streaming from lectures. You can deliver various messages – daily event program, summaries from workshops, video interviews with important speakers and streaming from lectures. That’s a very powerful tool to communicate with physicians, as you provide them with they really expect and enjoy – knowledge from respected conferences for free.
Invite HCPs to online streams
Just like during conferences, you can put together doctors and patients from different countries and specializations. The difference between the events is webinars do not need any special occasion, you can organize them whenever you need.
Motivate your employees by using Highp for internal communication
Imagine your representatives, product and project managers receiving short videos recorded by your Head of Division or HR employee, encouraging them to read a report attached to the message or invite them to an annual company event. It’s concrete, quick and fun, people will like it.
Build loyalty programs for customers
Automatically send educational messages and tips to registered patients. If you think about optimizing your 360 marketing, Highp might be the element you missed to deliver promotion that reaches the customer just about everywhere.
Effectively communicate in the region
Coordinate all the communication with cooperators, internal and external partners and suppliers by sending them Highp email and SMS messages with invitations for internal meetings, quarter or year summaries, new activities and plans. You can also manage tasks assigned particular regions by your headquarters.
The year is quickly heading towards its end. The few last pages on your thinning calendar remind you the sad truth: Time is money and you have not much time and not much money left.
As pharma marketing director or key account manager you race to find some quick and brilliant ideas to use the staying sum of your yearly promotional budget. Often, funds which stay untouched in November get wasted. Usually, Q4 means the funds left for product promotion are pretty low, but companies which have come across rule 78know each dollar spent on marketing at the end of one year means 78 dollars of sales during the year to come.
So, you need a quick, great promotion, but have no money for big advertisement like TV or billboard campaign. On the other hand, cheaper options, like mailing or flyer printing just doesn’t convince you, they may not bring any effects at all. What should you do?
In this situation you can create and quickly send a rich campaign with Highp video messaging tool. Create your own video campaign and send it to your customers via SMS or email as a creative way of telling your customers ‘Hello, you are important to us. Please have our product in mind when preparing your next year budget!’ All you need is a mobile device. Here are four simple steps to do it:
Contact Connectmedica sales experts to help you create a Highp environment. You will then be able to buy credits and provide Highp experts with all your campaign content. This can be done in 1 day.
Take a mobile device and record yourself or a colleague, e.g. Key Account Manager, Sales Director or Key Opinion Leader. This short film is a personalized video greeting viewed by your customers at the beginning of the message. For best effects, the speaker should be a person your customer already knows.
Then add text and attachments about the product, like PDF files and PP presentations.
At the final stage, add a call-to-action button, like a ‘Would you like further contact from us’ question. And send this message to your list of recipients.
There, your Q4 sales budget is spent fruitfully. Highp pricing policy is company-friendly, as you pay for opened messages only. Costs start with a 2.5 euro per viewed message. Now you can close your yearly budget with the certitude this money has been spent in the best of possible ways… Enjoy!
When you hear ‘email marketing’ you think: Outlook, e-newsletters, short and witty subject line, 10% open-rate and many bounce mails. Despite what we’ve been told lately, email marketing days are not consistently fading away. Quite the contrary: email marketing expenses grow 10% year over year, 44% of email recipients made at least one purchase based on a promotional email last year. Experiments show your marketing message is 5 times more likely to be seen through email than on Facebook! It certainly is a field to fight for in you want to keep up with the best horses in this marketing race.
But don’t rush. You can’t send just any add or newsletter, it has to be outstanding, as there is NOTHING irritating people more than useless mails. Take a look at blog posts and web discussions about unwanted content. Let me assure you that ‘useless junk mail’ is the nicest description I could find. Not to mention quotes about those who SEND the adds. I was surprised by the amount of hatespammers incite.
Email campaigns including VIDEO are bringing 40 % higher revenue than sole text + pictures. Unfortunately, incorporating video into mails meets various technical obstacles and is not used by marketers. Why? We asked Highp Research & Development Team Leader, Greg Kolasa to explain it to us in understandable terms:
There is an opinion in the sales world that video mailing campaigns are very difficult to conduct. Why is that?
G.K. Well, the main problem is video file size. If a normal text mail has 0.001MB, a high quality 15 second long film takes… 10MB! You can also fit the file to take 2-3MB, but the quality will be very bad. Imagine you try to send a 10MB video to 10000 clients. What you get is a whole lot of data which is likely to get lost on the way.
Will it be dropped to the SPAM folder?
G.K. It’s highly probable. Usually, servers try to protect us from unwanted advertising which could contain harmful messages. If you subscribe for a newsletter, or opt-in for brand publicity, your mail client won’t really know what to do with it. Usually mailboxes capture content, which is sent to many users in identical forms. This is the reason companies started addressing these mails “Dear + name”, so the server sees the message as personal. Still, the content is so similar, it will often be classified as SPAM or even rejected in the cloud.
This is exactly the problem we tried to minimize while creating our tool. Messages sent with Highp technology are personalized right from the start: They are usually sent by a sales representative, so the recipient already knows the sender. On mail level, this sender is a real person, with a name, not a company. So we have one personal account sending a message to one specific group – let’s say, 1500 clients. Chances the system will throw that content in SPAM bulk are small.
Great job, Greg.
We have recently launched the new Highp 2.3 release, hope we’ll meet again to talk about it soon.
According to data collected in “SMS communication in Poland in 2013” research, SMS messages are the most universal and most gladly used communication channel among smartphone and regular phone users. 8 out of 10 Poles admit they send and receive text messages – 66% of them use short messages everyday.
Over 75% of survey participants think that – despite of mobile technology development and increasing sales of smartphones and tablets – SMS communication stays easy to use, fast and effective communication tool. Almost three fourths smartphone owners stated they prefer SMS messages more than mobile communicators.
Many of respondents consider SMS with promo info as interesting – even 36,6% of them is willing to get more such messages. 81,2% of respondents declare that SMS with shop promo info would make them visit store website or point of sale. Similar percentage of respondents (80,4%) declares that such SMS would convince them to visit stationary shop to get to know more of the products.
The respondents are most interested in discounts. Three-fourths of them are interested in receiving promo SMS which allows them to get discounts for their favourite products.
In the era of mass e-mailing, modern apps and a strong interest in multi/omnichanneling, SMS (text) communication doesn’t seem “so sexy” anymore. It seems, that marketers’ eyes, turned towards innovative digital solutions, web analytics and user paths based on Google’s ZMOT concept didn’t notice the tool, which has been a leader of outreach, Gross Rating Point and communication personalization for over two decades.
According to the Central Statistical Office of Poland, the number of mobile users (both plan and prepaid) in the end of March 2013 was 54,85 million. It’s 2 times more than in 2007. Today, according to the research, there’s 1,5 mobile phone for each Pole. For one household the number is close to 4.
Year on year, the number of mobile phones with software allowing to install applications and big screen making using of multimedia easier, is growing sharply. In 2014 almost half of the Poles had smartphone-kind device. Mostly, the owners of such devices were young people age 15-19 and 20-29 (70% total). According to the TNS Polska’s prognosis the percentage of smartphone ownerswill increase up to 60%.
According to data collected in “SMS communication in Poland in 2013” research, SMS messages are the most universal and most gladly used communication channel among smartphone and regular phone users. 8 out of 10 Poles admit they send and receive text messages – 66% of them use short messages every day.
Many types of research point, that SMS open rate is around 90-98%. In comparison, 20% open rate for e-mailing campaigns is considered, as exceptionally effective.
Why do we read SMS more often than e-mails? The answer to that question is very complex. The simplest reason is that SMS is most important communication way because we communicate significant information through this channel more often than through any others. As a consequence, the average time from receiving SMS to reading it is less than 3 minutes.
Traditional marketing SMS communication understood as sending advertising information is accepted by 36% of Poles (Serwer SMS, 2013). The acceptance rate depends on the industry and content.
A positive segment to the communication and the sender increases with the relationship between the company or its representative and the recipient. People that we know (added to our phonebook) are potentially the sources of essential information, so we are more interested in their communicates. Modern marketers should pay special attention to this form of communication and use the potential of SMS communicates.
Personalization of communicates
SMS marketing is no longer about sending 160 characters, inviting to visit a store or informing about a new promo.
Modern SMS marketing allows to build whole campaigns, containing innovative digital solutions. The great example is Highp powered by Connectmedica. Highp allows for creating lists of recipients and personalized messages with videos (html5) and attachments.
What more – recipients have constant access to the history of communication with the representative, so they can always go back to the previous messages. Highp connects the potential of SMS marketing with unlimited opportunities for innovative digital solutions, without any necessity to develop another mobile app.
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