How Are Big Tech Companies Changing Pharma Marketing?
Uber is getting into patient transport. Samsung is rolling out healthcare-providing bots. Apple healthcare continues growing. Amazon is entering the prescription drug market. The big tech companies are entering the healthcare market, and disrupting everything they can, as usual.
When big tech enters a field, they aren’t just another competitor – they tend to be game-changers. They only enter a field when they feel that they can use their technological skill and scale to radically overhaul, streamline, and transform an industry. In other words: they disrupt. And once they’ve disrupted, there’s no going back – but disruption brings plenty of opportunities.
The speed, ease of use, and digital-first outlook that are big tech’s bread and butter are arriving in healthcare and pharma marketing. Mobile devices, wearables, and the like have become the medium through which people receive services, and become aware of services. Big tech has tackled retail, entertainment, finance, and customer service – and now, it’s beginning to look at healthcare sector.
So what does this mean for healthcare & pharma marketers?
Audiences are expecting more, and faster.
Whether you’re marketing towards the public or healthcare professionals, your audience has become familiar with the speed and ease-of-use of big tech. Even if they still expect traditional marketing, they know what it’s like to shop on Amazon, or do online banking. Previously tiresome tasks can now be done in several clicks – for perpetually-busy physicians and administrators, that’s a huge plus.
For marketers that can deliver their message quickly, clearly, enjoyably and memorably, this is a huge opportunity. E-detailing can reach health care providers who don’t have time to meet with reps, and email drip campaigns can keep in touch without overwhelming. An email campaign with a dynamic video element can reach thousands of people in minutes, take up much less of their time than a face-to-face meeting, yet still make a big impression. And, as an added bonus…
You can (and should) take advantage of analytics.
Digital-first marketing lets you get really great user data. Who got the email, who visited the website, who watched the video, how long they watched for, which links they clicked, how long they read for – online experiences are not only rich, but data-rich. All big tech companies use big data this way – and so can you, even if your big data is small. You can generate leads and track your campaign success in fine detail – all it takes is a well-thought-out digital marketing campaign.
The market is getting more crowded, and you’ll need to stand out.
New companies entering the field means new competition you’ll need to beat. But the way forward is known – products like dynamic videos, assessment questionnaires and user-focused websites, and practices like personalization, community building, content marketing and gamification, have become standard operating procedure in digital-forward industries. Using them can help stake out a claim in the digital pharma marketing land rush.
Take advantage of tech
The hard part is already done – technology is already present. iPads have already swept through the health care world, and health care providers (and their patients!) spend their days with their faces glued to their devices. Take advantage of these devices (and their platforms) to provide information where it will be seen. iPads offer excellent opportunities for e-detailing, and health-related apps can be delivered instantly via app stores to mobile and wearable devices. Your audience’s attention is already on mobile – meet them where they are!
Big tech’s entry into the healthcare market will change it – not just through the services they sell, but by their very presence and way of doing business. It’s disruption – a tale as old as this millennium. And it’s an opportunity – a chance to leapfrog ahead of your competition, and rise to the top of your field, by adopting tried-and-true practices of leading-edge digital marketing.
Rich Media has helped companies from a wide variety of industries make the leap to digital and stick the landing. Reach out or check out our portfolio to see what sort of marketing could lie in your future.