Healthcare professionals (HCPs) are an important target group for many companies in Life Sciences & Health. Traditionally, sales reps approach HCPs offline, but this is becoming less effective. HCPs obviously receive many visits and have little time. Furthermore, many sales reps are now using digital technology. Like Veeva Engage, for example. However, this only works if you are already in contact with HCPs. If not, you need different online channels to reach them.
The focus is rapidly shifting to online: 67% of HCPs are digital native and gather their information online.
This page shows some of the online marketing methods that we commonly use.
Our approach in brief: first we study the product, segment, company, the market and target group. After that, we determine the online goal, derived from the company’s objective. Now it’s time to establish KPIs which will enable us to make the online objective measurable. In an online marketing strategy, we then describe the most effective way to reach the target group and achieve the objective with a selection of online channels and media. We subsequently implement the strategy ourselves, in partnership with the client.
There are three important phases when setting up an online campaign: research, strategy and concept. In the research phase, we look at the current online landscape. For example, a pharmacist wants to set up an online campaign for a disease. The pharmacist wants to offer online tools to HCPs to help them make better diagnoses. In this case, it’s important to know what kind of online tools already exist. And where there are opportunities. The research also reveals which search terms are used by the target group in Google. Are the ones you originally thought of really the terms they use? We also explore which social channels the target group uses and whether these are relevant for the campaign.
Extensive research is in fact the start of the strategy phase. It’s now time for strategic considerations, an in-depth study of theoretical models, selection of channels, etc. The intensity of this phase varies with each project. One client is keen to build on an existing online strategy, while another prefers to develop a strategy from scratch. In the above example, the strategy offers insight into the relevant channels for promoting the online tools. The strategy also explains how a potential campaign website is searchable in Google and what tone of voice is suitable.
In the concept phase, our creatives start work. They read the research and the strategy and give full rein to their creativity. For us, this is one of the most enjoyable phases. Brainstorming sessions produce ideas about the concept of the campaign. We usually develop different directions to present to the client. This might involve a concept which is mainly informative, one which plays on the emotional side of the HCP or one which is extremely prominent. Together with the client, we choose one direction which we elaborate in full.
Web & App
At Medical Digitals, we make various website platforms for HCPs. In many cases, a platform is the heart of an online campaign. Here are some examples of website applications for HCPs.
Websites with HCP login
There are various ways to reach HCPs via website platforms. For example, we make websites with a closed section for HCPs. This section of the platform contains medical content about the relevant disease. Incidentally, we also make platforms on which the HCP content is public, so not requiring a login. In these cases, however, we ask the visitor to indicate whether they are a care professional or not.
Landing pages for continued training, webinars, online events
We regularly develop independent web pages to promote continued training, for example. This works as follows: through channels like LinkedIn and mailings, we send short, attractive articles about continued training on behalf of our client. These messages contain a link which the HCP can click to reach a landing page. Such a page is dedicated to generating enrolments to continued training courses.
Custom-made e-mail technology
Another web application that we use a lot is custom-made e-mail technology. This technology enables HCPs to view content behind a login from a mailing. This is possible for e-mail addresses verified by the pharmacist (or other LSH company). The HCP doesn’t need to create an account, which boosts user friendliness.
Product websites or product-specific pages within own domain We are also experienced in creating product websites and product pages. These might include websites and pages which have their own visual style and perhaps functions to promote products.
High traffic & complex CMS
For European online campaigns, we encounter high volumes of traffic on one domain. Our systems, and the specialists behind them, guarantee that high traffic runs smoothly. We are also familiar with complex Content Management Systems (CMS). Over the years, we have got to know multiple systems, such as WordPress, Drupal, Umbraco, October and Sitecore. Furthermore, our talented developers are quickly able to adapt to new systems.
Most of the platforms that we develop contain a lead generation function. The potential to generate online leads has obviously soared in recent years. Lead generation is primarily about collecting data from someone in your target group and obtaining opt-ins. For Life Sciences & Health, these might include:
registrations for a mailing list, webinar, continued training or e-learning;
registrations for a congress or event;
new accounts on a closed HCP platform.
Interested in a detailed handbook to reach HCPs through lead generation? Leave your e-mail address and you will receive our whitepaper in your mailbox!
Many corporate websites of Life Sciences & Health organisations are outdated. We still see non-responsive websites, non-user-friendly tools and dead links. Many web designs are also very old fashioned. We understand that many local corporate websites are bound to rules from the global organisation. That makes it an interesting challenge for us to update and modernise an old corporate website. There are often more options than you think. A while ago, we wrote an analysis blog about 5 corporate websites of pharmacists.
Content on the website
Usually, we don’t just design and build platforms, we also provide all the content on them. This ensures a fast lead time for the project. That might include the website texts as well as photography, animations and videos. Alongside an entire team of copywriters, medical writers, designers, animators and photographers, we develop content for online applications. Read more about content.
HCP support with a digital survey tool
Many HCPs benefit from digital tools for patient information. For one client, we developed a web application that can be operated on a tablet. HCPs use this app to interview patients about their illness. The information is then stored according to the guidelines and made available for research and development. Read more about content.
Our way of working in five steps
We work on a website or app project in five steps.
Before we create a platform, we analyse the patient journey and highlight where conversions need to take place. In this phase, we determine the extent of innovative functionalities and the technologies we use. We also create a visual concept as a starting point for the platform.
How do you ensure that extensive platforms are easy to navigate? And that all the creative choices are focused on the patient journey? We accompany our client in the User Experience process to develop a well-considered product.
In this phase, we make a framework of all the pages. We show how they are related. The strategy behind the website is visually elaborated here. This overview makes the customer journey tangible and conversions clear.
We make wireframes of all the pages of a platform. A wireframe is a blueprint of a web page. This shows where the various content forms come on the page. We outline where the header, body and footer will come. It also provides insight into the position of text, pictures, videos or other functionalities. Because the elements in this phase have not yet been designed, we can make modifications much more efficiently if necessary.
A good design is vital. It ensures that content is accessible and therefore contributes to the platform’s goals. When designing websites or applications, we check which target group we want to appeal to. We create a visual style which is recognisable and as simple as possible. In this way, we prevent interference, so that the reader is focused on the content.
When a platform has a lot of content, it is useful to define when which content is shown. We consider the following questions: ‘How will the next paragraph be shown when you scroll down?’, ‘How can we ensure that important call-to-actions are highlighted?’ and ‘What is the page transition?’. These micro animations ensure good interaction between user and content and make a platform modern and attractive.
For an optimal user experience, it is important to use the latest technologies. Our expertise covers a wide range of front and back-end frameworks like ReactJS & React Native, Vue.js, Node.js, PHP, Laravel, Bootstrap, BEM, CSS Grid, Sass and .NET.
We also regularly work with complex Content Management Systems, like Sitecore, Umbraco, Drupal, October and of course WordPress. Every platform has its own wishes and requirements. We therefore regularly anticipate when an organisation uses a technology throughout the company for developing products, for example.
This is the phase when we fill the platform with content. Our copy and medical writers work closely together with our strategists and designers to make sure that the message is communicated well. In text, image and video. We ensure that the necessary content always complies with the guidelines of the KOAG/KAG and the CGR. Read more about content creation here.
Going live is not the end – it’s just the beginning! Platforms are dynamic products. Scalability is important and Content Management Systems must be maintained. How do we ensure that the servers can cope with high traffic? How often do we make back-ups? How do we manage GDPR: what data do we process and what not? All these things are addressed in the after care of a published platform.
Content is the main theme in every online campaign we implement. We develop:
We specialise in textual and visual content for healthcare professionals (HCPs) This target group requires a specific approach. For example, a doctor expects a text at a certain medical level, including the use of medical terms and the right citations. A doctor must think: this was written for me. The sender speaks the same language.
If a pharmacist brings a new treatment to the market, they obviously want to inform doctors about it. In many cases, online content is a good medium. This might include information brochures, LinkedIn content and e-mail campaigns. For example: a pulmonologist uses LinkedIn to read about the latest developments via medical groups. By targeting this group, the pharmacist can reach the pulmonologist through advertising with content about the new treatment. By clicking on the advertisement, the doctor arrives on a landing page with all the relevant information. Here the doctor can register for a webinar about the new treatment, for example.
Online copywriters & medical writers
Our team includes online copywriters and medical writers. This combination ensures that texts are medically correct, read well and match the target group. This is essential in the Life Sciences & Health sector and we are uniquely aware of this. If the project requires it, one of our search engine specialists joins the team to write texts that are optimised for Google.
Besides text writers, our team also includes online designers who create house styles, animate videos and design social posts. These designers are involved in a campaign from the start. They create the visual campaign style and apply this to the various content forms.
The possibilities for generating online leads have soared in recent years. The simplest definition of lead generation is: ‘Acquiring new potential clients.’ Nowadays, this is mainly done online. More and more organisations are engaging in lead generation. Particularly in a competitive market, generating high-quality leads is virtually a necessity. In the LSH sector too, online lead generation is becoming more common.
Lead generation is primarily about collecting data from someone in your target group. For Life Sciences & Health, these might include:
registrations for a mailing list, webinar, continued training or e-learning;
registrations for a congress or event;
new accounts on a closed HCP platform.
Interested in a detailed handbook to reach HCPs through lead generation? Send us an e-mail and you will receive our whitepaper in your mailbox!
When we started Medical Digitals in 2010, social media was still in its infancy. Only a few companies in Life Sciences & Health were using social media as a marketing channel. Things have changed now. In today’s online campaigns, social media is almost indispensable. It is an important link in reaching healthcare professionals (HCPs). HCPs are very active on social media. They check their newsfeeds on LinkedIn and Twitter for news, trends or new treatment techniques.
Social media strategy
To obtain a clear picture of the goal of social media, a successful social media campaign always starts with a strategy. Likes, shares and clicks don’t just fall from the sky. For us, analysing the target group, objectives and possibilities is the basis for a strategy. However, we don’t do this alone but together with the client. Our strategists need the client’s indispensable knowledge and experience to be able to provide pertinent advice. This advice focuses on various issues, like choice of channel, content type(s), visual style, tone of voice or advertising.
Content creation for social media
Stories, carousel posts, link images or videos. The potential of social media grows by the day. However, the Life Sciences & Health sector is bound by strict rules. Our content specialists are aware of the latest trends and current legislation and regulations. We feel that’s vital. This is the only way to create effective, rule-bound social content for Life Sciences & Health.
Community management and webcare
Social media is accessible to everyone. And that means that every doctor, GP or nurse can respond to the content you publish. Which might sound worrying, but it is an opportunity to create a bond with the target group. We can help you do that. For example, by responding spontaneously and substantively to questions and comments from the community. This keeps the community lively. We naturally submit all the reactions to the client and only post them after official approval.
Another essential element is a webcare plan regarding how to respond to comments and a social media protocol. The social media protocol describes the specific procedure to be followed if an adverse effect (AE) is mentioned. We have developed several webcare strategies and social media protocols for both Dutch and European campaigns. This experience helps us seamlessly align new protocols with the existing way of working with respect to reporting adverse effects.
To reach HCPs, it is essential to share content at the right moment and using the right channel. What if they don’t see the content? A whitepaper, animation or social media post will then obviously lose its value. Advertising therefore deserves an important place in an online campaign. With online advertising, you reach a specific target group in a very focused way. There are numerous options. Here are some examples.
Social media platforms have access to a lot of user data. This makes it possible to target very specifically. Every social media platform therefore offers the possibility to use advertising. One platform may do this more extensively than another. Besides standard advertising options on social media channels, we also use a different method: hypersegmentation. This is a refined method to reach very specific HCPs on channels like LinkedIn and Twitter. Based on big data, the method provides insight into target groups and assembles specific target groups very securely. These target groups include exactly the people you want to reach. Without interference advertising, which ensures an efficient use of the budget. By inserting the social ads in a way that they are clickable, we generate a lot of relevant traffic to the client’s platform.
Would you like to know more about how hypersegmentation (microsegmentation) works? We will be happy to call you or send an e-mail with a detailed description. Send an e-mail to email@example.com or call +31 (0)20-3080208.
Due to the speed of online, people expect to receive an answer to their question in seconds. An HCP won’t therefore go to page two of Google. So, make sure that your content is posted near the top of the first page. Search Engine Advertising (SEA) makes this possible. This specialism ensures that your website appears directly above the organic search results. After performing the keyword research, we know exactly which search terms your target group uses. This means that the advertisement is only shown if the HCP uses specific search terms, improving the relevance of impressions and clicks. Our specialists know where advertisements may be placed or not and can write advertising texts in such a way that we comply with legislation without missing out on results.
GPs, pulmonologists or oncologists: different specialists who consult different websites to follow the latest developments in their field. The revenue model of these websites often consists of native advertising: offering sponsored content which corresponds with the platform on which it appears. Because the sponsored content resembles regular articles on the platform, the user experience is almost the same. This makes native advertising less ‘aggressive’ than other forms of advertising and it converts better.
A website is usually the basis for an online campaign. Also in Life Sciences & Health. There are various ways in which such a website can generate traffic. For example, advertisements on social media or links from external platforms. But in many cases, Google is the main source of traffic. This is where many people start their search for information. As a marketer, you can ensure that your website is high among the search results for search terms relevant to you. Organic and paid. In brief:
SEO: Search Engine Optimization SEO activities contribute to the organic positions of web pages.
SEA: Search Engine Advertising SEA involves the design, publishing and optimisation of the advertisements which appear above the organic positions.
Keyword research Keyword research forms the basis for both SEO and SEA campaigns. Google’s keyword planner gives us insight into the search behaviour of your target groups. For example: a pharmacist wants to target HCPs with an informative website about the treatment options for a skin disease. The content is public and appears before a login. For an online bicycle shop, selecting suitable terms is easy. For medical purposes, it’s different. What terms do HCPs use when looking for information about that skin disease and the treatment options? And imagine that the pharmacist wants to use Google Ads. What terms are frequently used in competitor advertising? These are important insights which determine the SEO and SEA strategy.
Every day, our SEO specialists make sure that web pages get a good organic quality score in Google. Organic, i.e. without paying for advertisements. A lot of factors are involved here. For example, the technology of a website. Is the website responsive to several devices? And does it have an SSL certificate? Content also plays an important role. Are the texts optimised for Google? And do the images have the right tags in the CMS? We call technology and content ‘on-site optimisation’. Getting relevant links to the website is ‘off-site optimisation’. This contributes to the authority of the website.
Do you want to be shown at the top of Google search results? If so, choose SEA. This specialism ensures that your website appears directly above the organic search results. You do pay advertising costs, but it can be very worthwhile. It means you can focus very specifically on your target group and you can always control what you spend. Our specialists have experience with SEA in the Life Sciences & Health sector. They know where advertisements may be placed or not and can write advertising texts in such a way that we comply with legislation without missing out on results.