HCP education is now more important than ever. Physicians seek in their interactions with brands an experience of value and worth. For that to happen, pharma companies must target these at the right channels with content that is both timely and relevant.
Scientific journals and magazines were once the main sources of information consumption in the pharmaceutical industry. Nonetheless, such has changed with the dissemination of the Internet and widened accessibility to a myriad of different content. Both easy-to-access and more interactive. This is what HCPs look for.
With this in mind, we have gathered for you a list of the top channels for HCP education that will help you improve physicians’ journey with your brand.
The channels of choice
1. Online search engines
Over half of today’s HCP are digital natives or people who have become acquainted with the Internet and digital gadgets. As a consequence, in the past years, there has been a shift in the way in which consumers, namely physicians, seek information and educate themselves.
Search engines are the stepping stone to most people’s journey into online channels. It is there that one tries, through keywords, to find the relevant information and platforms through which to obtain and/ or consume content. And it has proven to be particularly resourceful to HCP.
Online search engines such as Google and Bing offer immediate responses to particular needs. And all in a matter of seconds. One only needs keywords that will direct it to the most relevant channels and sources.
For example, physicians can mainly use it after an appointment with a patient, if they have a particular doubt or question on a certain subject that needs an immediate answer. From there, they can then move on to narrow their options and venture into using particular channels of their preference.
Research shows that over 50% of HCP seek information online several times per week as a way to support patient care and improve their response to each individual’s unique circumstances (2040 Digital).
So, most physicians today are online. And it is there that they strive to educate themselves to better their decision-making. Pharma companies must, then, think of it as the right channel in which to target HCP and turn their attention to their expertise and educational value in the field.
2. Video explainers
Video is a growing trend in pharma marketing that has changed the way people access and consume information. Viewers are thought to spend a whopping 100% of their time on websites and digital platforms that have videos (Archive Boston). But how is this true for HCP?
Already in the early 2010s physicians displayed a preference for content consumed online in different formats, such as video. It is an informative and interactive tool that has proven to be successful in translating complex information into memorable, bite-sized experiences.
This format is a tool thought to be useful, as it adapts to HCPs’ busy schedules, helping them respond quickly to patients’ needs. And so, most of the videos created in pharma, but also in other businesses are explainers.
Video explainers constituted 74% of the videos created in 2021 (Wyzowl). Through these, pharma companies share with HCP:
- Details on a product’s MoA;
- Information about contraindications and results of a drug’s effectiveness; and
- Share research data collected throughout the different stages of the product’s lifecycle.
Did you know that…95% of information conveyed via video is retained by the viewer? (Arkadin) Create your first with RedNovius’ PubVisual, today!
There are many benefits to including video in your marketing strategy. HCPs see in them an educational value, that is effective in positively changing opinions towards a brand and/or specific product.
3. Virtual conferences and webinars
The pharmaceutical industry is ever-changing and evolving. And the pace just dramatically increased with COVID-19 and the necessity to respond effectively and quickly to the population’s needs. And so, HCPs had to find new ways in which to educate themselves on the new products that are launched into the market each year.
As the pace increased for pharmaceutical companies, it equally did for physicians. Despite seeing a dramatic decrease in office visits from patients, they had to adapt to the new technologies that bridged communication.
Virtual conferences and webinars have become one of the preferred methods for keeping up to date with the latest developments in the field. These are educational events that allow physicians to come into contact with other practices in the field and see how they can be adapted, reinvented, or even perfected.
Webinars and online events break cultural barriers and time zones, bringing people from all corners of the globe together. Thus, these are unique learning experiences that open the door for continuing education and evolution in the field. Which brings value both to brands and HCPs alike.
Podcasts are one of the most popular content formats consumed by people today. Raise your hand if you listen to crime podcasts or just informal conversations on contemporary society! The truth is, this is a format favored for its flexibility and versatility. And HCPs value it for their education journey.
Already in 2019, a survey by Kantar Media found that 75% of healthcare professionals listened to podcasts on their phones. And this trend has just been growing. With busier schedules and less availability to expend on time-consuming research initiatives, physicians appreciate the digestible character of online alternatives such as podcasts.
“The threshold to maintain the energy to actively listen is much lower than the energy required to be doing the research.” – Doctor for Academic Medicine (Wolters Kluwer)
Perse, podcasts offer a format that concedes HCP with power over their education and that is resourceful. Physicians choose the topics they want to follow, and the stories they want to hear at their chosen time. On top of that, podcasts are timely. Every day there is a new episode to discover or a topic to explore. For that this channel is a valuable tool for HCP to maintain up-to-date on the latest discussions in the field. Furthermore allowing the detection of what is of relevance at a certain time and moment.
On a concluding note…
The future is now. And is digital. Hence, Pharma companies only have to gain if they target HCP at the right place and time. And to do so, they must choose the channels through which to communicate with physicians. So, why not consider a podcast, video, or webinar? These can be the way forward to strengthen the relationship with your key stakeholders.