Big vision ideas and great thoughts for the future of sales and marketing in the life sciences industry (both real and imagined) proliferated at the recent Digital Pharma East in Philadelphia. The conference also provided attendees lots of readouts of surveys and other data that's been collected from health care providers (HCPs). While all of this information was interesting, one stat stood out to me:

40% of doctors want resources they can email to their patients.

This is interesting because the solution to this problem—sending doctors content they actually want—aside from being relatively easy, allows you to reach a few of your goals simultaneously. First, this is an opportunity for your marketing teams to provide physicians with content they will view as valuable. Second, it will allow your marketing teams to make reps happy by creating something valuable for them to use. This helps promote the integration of sales and marketing teams, which most of us agree is the way of the future. Third, it takes advantage of one of the few opportunities to integrate both HCPs and patients in one marketing program.

Many companies have already started implementing programs to provide information electronically to HCPs using the sales force. Most often these emails include PDFs of clinical reprints or other typical marketing information (i.e., the sales aid revisited). While these programs tend to be used on a very limited basis, there is a lot of opportunity for you to solve the needs of HCPs and their patients, as well as achieve some of your own goals, by providing physicians valuable content through technology you already have in place.

Those who have made the most of this opportunity and effectively executed these digital marketing programs have exercised a customer-centric approach. So while Digital Pharma told us that 40% of HCPs want patient-facing resources, the other 60% may not find them valuable. Instead of delivering this content to your entire customer base, with customer-centric marketing you target only the 40% that actually want it.

With the clients I work with, the biggest obstacle isn’t the desire to implement a new approach, but rather knowing where to start. The path to customer-centric marketing starts with preference-driven marketing. Watch this video to see how standing in the physician’s shoes when developing your promotional strategy can help you increase customer engagement and sales and marketing effectiveness.

Topics: customer-centric marketing, CCM, patient marketing, preference, doctor