The pandemic obliged pharma reps to become “digitally present” as opposed to face-to-face. It also pushed HCP to evolve their expectations regarding the interactions with the businesses. All as new digital natives in a hyper-connected atmosphere.
This also means that they are in demand. And rely more on valuable communications via digital channels, such as email. Product and brand information is now expected to be consumed through resources received directly in the inbox.
More than selling something, HCP expect pharma companies to be partners throughout their journey. By having relevant data delivered at the right time.
So it’s becoming more and more important that pharma companies have a greater knowledge of the audience’s needs, expectations, behaviors, and preferences.
The most recent post-pandemic figures, show us the best practices for the new era and the right direction to go in 2022.
Email: HCPs’ favorite interaction channel and device!
According to HealthLink Communications Report 2020, 65% of HCP consider email to be their preferred channel of interaction when it comes to information related to product announcements.
And it’s also the number one in Pharma when marketing to HCP. In fact, according to Viseven, pharma is marketing to its audience through:
- Emails – 81%;
- Medical News / Clinical publications – 80%;
- Direct mail – 51%;
- Online physician communities – 32%;
- eDetailing– 30%;
- Mobile apps – 29%;
- Online advertisements – 12%;
- Websites/Portals/Landing Pages – 12%;
- Social media – 10%.
When it comes to the device of choice, namely to view and engage with email content, the desktop remains the number one preferred device. But mobiles don’t come too far behind. according to HealthLink:
But don’t get too salesy…
61% of HCP are receptive to digital healthcare advertising (HealthLink). However, these interactions must be meaningful and deliver quality information.
Here is a small list of some identified as unhelpful or annoying communications in the voice of the HCP:
1) Unsolicited emails or phone calls;
2) “Helpful hints” that disguise sales efforts;
3) Multiple, overly frequent email messaging;
4) Misleading or out-of-date information; and
5) Embedded ads that don’t deliver value for the click-through.
Top Tip: A high percentage of HCP share the educational resources provided by the organizations to help and educate the patients!
When creating content, add value through the resources shared. Not only to HCP but also to patients!
And this can be as simple as adding an explainer video to your email marketing campaign.
Best subject lines for HCP
Based on their campaigns, the Orientation Agency gathered the subject lines that had generated the higher engagement of HCP.
Here are the ones that stood out for open rate results:
- Are your…;
- Discuss your…;
- Address the needs of…;
- Looking for…;
- Launch: (then details of the product);
- New and exciting…; and
- Join us at…
Also, the ones that stood out for the Click-Through Rate (CTR) results:
- Unlock your…;
- Looking for…;
- Discover more…; and
- Registration is open for…
Fun Fact: When looking back at 2019, emails sent by pharma companies to HCP only had a 9.4% open rate (DMD). Jumping ahead to April of 2020, we’ve watched a 300% increase with an open rate average of 18.9%!
Did you know that video in your email marketing can increase open rates by 19% and boost click-through rates by 65% (CampaignMonitor)?! Start adding valuable video resources to your campaigns with PubExplainer today!
The perfect time to reach out
We already know the right channel, but what do the numbers tell us about the right time?
Optimizing the time slot for sending your pharmaceutical prospecting emails can improve your open rates by 94%, your response rates by 131%, and your lead rates by 1513% (Sopro).
According to Sendinblue and Sopro survey results:
- Over 85% of opened marketing emails were sent on weekdays;
- Over 90% of marketing emails that received clicks were sent on weekdays;
- In general, it’s better to send email campaigns in the middle of the week between Tuesday and Thursday; and
- Email engagement is generally best for emails sent during mid-morning at 10:00 or mid-afternoon at around 14:00.
- The worst response rate comes on Friday at 16:00, with just 10.5%;
- The best response rate comes at 17:00 on a Wednesday, with 24.2% of replies from customers;
- 10:00 is the perfect time for email recipients to get to work and check their inboxes; and
- At 15:00 and 16:00 is likely that there’s a new check on the inbox after lunch, as well as before leaving at the end of the day.
Tip: Think globally and segment your target audience considering the location. And you’ll be spot on with your email marketing time optimization all around the globe!