HealthDecember 06, 2019

The Role of e-detailing in your pharma marketing strategy

Finding it hard to get face time with physicians? Deliver a smarter, personalized message based on their needs and behavior through e-detailing.

With field sales force access to physicians becoming narrower, pharma marketers are on the lookout for more efficient ways to connect with physicians and deliver impactful, value-added messages. In this landscape, e-detailing — the use of electronic and interactive media to reach physicians — is becoming an increasingly important part of the marketing mix.

Most physicians own smart devices that allow for learning on the go, so connecting with them using digital media such as emails, videos, or online sample ordering makes business sense. A study conducted by Mariann Anderson, marketing manager for Pfizer, found that 97 percent of physicians prefer e-detailing to paper-based materials to explain complex information. It's in your best interest to take advantage of this growing preference for digital content and market to physicians on the devices they are most comfortable using.

E-detailing strategies are on the rise because they help surmount the challenges pharmaceutical sales reps (PSRs) face, like waiting for hours in the hopes of getting just a few minutes of face time with physicians. Digital technologies ensure that your message is delivered with less effort and is always available. Physicians can access the information when and where they like, giving you the opportunity to create brand awareness, educate, and facilitate sales without an in-person meeting.

Keep in mind that e-detailing and the legwork done by PSRs are not mutually exclusive. E-detailing works best when PSRs integrate these digital marketing strategies into their sales techniques and is most effective when campaigns answer questions and offer additional support. PSRs can increase their effectiveness by leveraging their relationships with physicians, along with data derived through digital outreach campaigns.

Indeed, a main benefit of e-detailing is the ability to obtain data on physicians' needs and behaviors in real time. Data gathered from digital campaigns can help you measure your campaign's effectiveness, then make adjustments so that your messages are more targeted and yield a higher return on investment (ROI). Data can include the number of views and downloads of your media, top viewed pages, time spent on each page, and geolocation and demographic information. PSRs can access this data in their customer relationship management (CRM) systems to glean insights into physicians' behavior, which allows them to adjust their sales tactics.

Think of all the ways you can be more impactful in your e-detailing strategies.  For instance, when did you last use 3D diagrams or interactive animation in your email campaigns? Are your videos engaging and optimized for mobile devices?  Also, consider the timing of your e-detailing campaigns, and how they integrate into your other marketing initiatives.

By understanding the value of e-detailing and integrating it into PSRs' marketing strategies, you'll have the tools to deliver information to physicians more effectively and generate higher ROI.

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