Feb 25, 2010

Don't forget the campaign operations planning!

I have seen this time and again, across multiple clients and brands, over the years. Marketers launch a series of concurrent marketing and sales tactics at the same time, and yet do not plan for the operational coordination between them. How does this show up? Here are some examples:

* Banner ads or print ads drive to web, and the landing page is not ready yet.
* Media on a coupon offer is launched late, and is not in market until the expiration date is almost offer
* Registration form questions that are inconsistent in print, website, and phone channels.
* Patient feedback systems like Infomedics are underutilized and misunderstood by the sales force.
* Not being able to tell which acquisition tactic brings in leads, due to lack of source coding.
* Direct mail is sent to long expired addresses, not cleansed by change of address.

I could go further, but these are just examples.

The consequences: bad customer experiences, and missed opportunities.

Campaign management and operations is a discipline that insures reliable patient and physician experiences witin relationship marketing. It is a combination of database skills, project planning and oversight, and optimization. Make sure your agency has specialists who can bring these skills, and make that investment. Also, check out the Direct Marketing Association for best practices.

Not only are problems avoided, but there are positive benefits to campaign operational planning. Cost savings, better targeting, and better patient and physician loyalty.

Feb 21, 2010

PMSA Promotional Workshop - Measurement planning key; digital analytics rare

Three weeks ago I had the pleasure of joining 75 of the industry's deep thinkers at The Pharmaceutical Management Science Association's PMSA's January Symposium on Optimizing Promotional Spend, held in Philadelphia,January 28 - 29, 2010.

Most attendees expected to see extensive mutlivariate regression models for optimizing the media mix. There was some of that. However, far more extensive was discussion of measurement planning: aligning to business goals, and gathering the right information sources. The message, do not save analyses until after the campaign is over - Plan Ahead!

Anoher surprise was a question posed to manufacturers in the audience: how many are actively analyzing performance of your websites? Zero responded affirmatively. As digital channels grow ever more dominant in CRM, we need for digital agencies and manufacturers to more closely collaborate in optimizing digital media and the websites they drive to.

Feedback Loop in Pharmaceutical Sales

Increasing numbers of pharmaceutical companies are investing in tablet PCs for their sales forces. The motivations are multiple, including regulatory as described in a recent Wall St Journal article.

See this link from MedAdNews by Steven Niles on the Feedback Loop enabled by electronic sales tablets. The by-line is somewhat ambitious: "New technology is making closed-loop marketing more effective and creating a stronger connection between sales and marketing through real-time feedback from physicians."

However, an incremental phased approach should be taken to develop a feedback loop. Think about what types of information can be shared with sales representatives without distracting them.

Plan quarter by quarter as to what can be achieved. Feedback may be partly manual at the start. Develop a measurement plan, and continually optimize and improve each quarter.

Measuring Social Media in Healthcare

Before diving into a digital relationship marketing program, marketers should understand what conversations are already taking place. This is especially true for social media.

A disciplined approach is required to measure social media conversations in healthcare.
Certainly, one has to have query tools like Radian6 and Visible Technologies, but those are just part of the solution. See the recent article below for how to use business objectives, medical taxonomies, and insight mining to better understand what consumers are saying.

Medical Marketing and Media, "The Science of eavesdropping," May 2009

Starting a New Blog - Healthcare RM

This is a new blog related to Healthcare Relationship Marketing. An experiment that will aim to pull together direct response marketing, online media, technology trends, and analytics. All focused on healthcare, Both for patients, professionals, and payers.

Sometimes there will be original posts from what I've noticed surveying the marketplace. Other times there may be a reference to other companies, or examples of noteworthy projects.

Let's see what the volume and readership are like. Looking forward to the venture.