Dr. Harshit Jain is the Founder and Global CEO of Doceree, the First Global Network of Physician-only Platforms for Programmatic Marketing. With Doceree, he is aiming to address the acute problem of rising cost of healthcare by bringing in efficiency and effectiveness in marketing to Physicians by pharma brands on digital platforms with methodical use of data and creativity.
The digital pharma ecosystem is evolving fast and marketers are quickly adapting to the changing landscape. The traditional model of accessing physicians in person is no longer the only way to engage them. Marketers who were earlier wary of using digital means to reach out to physicians — and even if they did it was not more than a checkbox activity – they have now fairly warmed up to the medium. With physicians switching to digital platforms for patient consultations and managing their practice, incorporating digital campaigns in marketing plans has become quite a necessity for marketers to achieve business goals.
Also, in the context of Prime Minister Narendra’s Modi recent launch of Ayushman Bharat Digital Mission, there is a renewed focus on digital healthcare, which is definitely going to push telehealth consultations and electronic medical records. It is time that pharma brands quickly adapt to the evolving digital ecosystem and combine the best of both the offline and online worlds to engage physicians better. The future of pharma marketing is hybrid and brand marketers need to look at ways to move from traditional routes to a more innovative approach where the offline and online touchpoints of physicians can be tracked well.
The Optichannel Approach
The more physicians are on digital platforms, the greater is the need to engage them there. Besides, it is also required to not miss other touchpoints where they are digitally active. Why optichannel solution beats other digital marketing solutions is because it delivers the messages in the form that is best suited for specific channels. The contextuality of messaging depending upon the channel it is served on makes physicians resonate with it better and that’s is why optichannel marketing solution has immense power to democratize physician marketing.
Increasing Physician Touchpoints
The digital presence of physicians is spread across different channels, depending upon their professional needs. To consult patients on digital platforms, telehealth platforms are the ideal source for them to be on. The popularity of these platforms has grown immensely after the pandemic and gaining access to the physicians while they tend to patients online is something pharma marketers cannot ignore anymore. Similarly, managing practice digitally with the help of Electronic Health Record (EHR) and other practice management software has been gaining traction with physicians. Physician networking sites and medical journals are other digital platforms where they are active professionally. Besides, they are also on emails and SMSes throughout. When the physicians’ touchpoints are so varied, missing out on the opportunity to reach them on any particular channel is denting the digital marketing effort. The optichannel solution ensures marketers are optimally utilizing the physicians’ touchpoints and no channel is missed where they could not showcase their brands’ messages via display, email or sms.
Not just it is important for marketers to gain access to physicians on different channels, it is also equally required is to provide them channel-centric messaging. Contextually-relevant messages garner far lot attention than those ones with which physicians can’t relate to. That’s why optichannel solution has an edge over any other marketing approaches. It takes care of how a message should be depending upon the channel. The channel-wise curation of brand messages provides marketers a leverage and improves business outcomes as performance of the campaigns enhances. Coherence in messaging ensured by optichannel marketing solution goes a long way in improving performance of campaigns, something that marketers look for.
For physicians’ behaviour change, the key lies in delivering the same message across channels with required tweaks. With this, the impact of messages get much pronounced. This experience can’t be achieved with different messaging on different channels. That’s where the far-reaching impact of optichannel solution in improving business outcomes lies. The possibility to gain this kind of experience is near impossible with delivery of different messaging on different channels. Coming across the same messaging even while physicians are either tending to patients on telehealth platform or checking an email or checking an SMS reinforces what the brand or product has to say, leading to a shift in physicians’ behaviour as they start to resonate with the oft-repeated messaging.
Eventually, the output of optichannel is optimized engagement. The purpose of optichannel marketing gets served with marketers witnessing improved business outcomes. Optimizing touchpoints result in optimizing engagement which in turn leads to optimal business outcomes. Targeting physicians on digital is not just about investing money randomly or for the sake of it. It is now about engaging physicians in the best possible manner. Gaining access to physicians on effective digital channels raises engagement levels.
Times are exciting for pharma marketers with newer and result-oriented digital solutions being available now. Optichannel marketing solution is going to bring huge transformation in pharma marketing space and would become a unique tool for marketers to engage physicians, helping them sharpen their marketing efforts and optimize their business outcomes.