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 customer 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 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 really 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.
Omnichannel marketing is not about the technology – it is about recognizing touchpoints with clients. Nearly 40 percent of pharma companies admit they don’t understand the customer decision journeys well enough to map digital touchpoints and tailor a digital strategy [source]. These statistics show that the pharma industry may have trouble collecting insights or cannot process them. Another factor troubling companies 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. Good recognition of the customer’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 those needs. Personalize and tailor your communication and, last but not least, measure the impact of your campaigns, not only open rate.