3 Key Takeaways from the 7th Annual Digital Marketing for Medical Devices Conference

     

EXLDigDevicesEast.jpgIn the digital age, your hard thought-out messaging often lives and dies in a matter of minutes. The internet is a graveyard of forgotten messages and unread blogs. For example, did you know that the average lifespan of a tweet is a mere 18 minutes? And yet, if someone happens to be looking for what you’re writing about, they’ll find their way to you faster than you can say, “RIP tweets.”

This is as true for the medical device industry as any, but there’s the added concern of regulatory risks. At the 7th Annual Digital Marketing for Medical Devices Conference, med device marketers gathered to share and learn what’s working in their industry. Here are 3 key takeaways:

Alignment
It’s no secret that there has been a rift among sales and marketing teams since, well, probably the beginning of sales and marketing teams. But when they share the goals of driving company growth and improving patient lives, shouldn’t they all just get along?

Some conflict can be the fuel that drives your teams to reach their common goals, but if sales and marketing work together, your company could generate 208% more marketing revenue. Through account-based marketing (ABM), sales and marketing are encouraged to open the door to collaboration, since it’ll require data from both areas. According to Jeff Rummer, Director of Global Marketing Ops at Medtronic, the three key ingredients to the “secret sauce” of account-based marketing: alignment and account planning, content and personalization, and aligned sales and marketing execution. “Alignment” is mentioned twice because it’s twice as important. Without sales and marketing alignment, you might as well shake your Magic 8 Ball for help, but most likely it will tell you, “Outlook not so good.”

Transparency
Thanks to the internet, the answer to just about everything is always at your fingertips. We have become a culture of fact-checkers. So, if your messaging conveys promises that can’t be kept or worse, proven, your product will never be trusted. Instead, we must strive for honesty, even when admitting weakness. Patients don’t want the product that claims to be the best. They want to know their chances, the potential risks and side effects, recovery time, and how your product may affect their future. They want the truth so they can make an informed decision. Yes, they’ll search for the same answers around your competitor’s product, but they’ll also compare the story you tell and the value it demonstrates.

Today, marketers must provide value, not a sales pitch. If consumers care - it’s content. If they don’t - it’s an ad. Messaging must be meaningful, so it’s important to always be aware of “occasions to capture” -- stories are all around, you just need to have your antenna up. There is enough fake new and false pretenses in the world. Make it easy for the consumers you target to find genuine information and in return you’ll receive their genuine interest.

Inception
Consumers are getting smart, so marketers must be smarter. Staying a step ahead and predicting needs are integral to marketing. As marketers, we have little moments of inception where we plant an idea, and those ideas grow into valuable selling opportunities. That’s why it’s important to survey your market and figure out where your customers hang out so you can ensure they see your message. 90% of doctors use social media daily, 22.4% use it to make sure they don’t miss anything. If you can find the platform your customers use most, you’ve found the best possible place to share your message. Plant your message in the places where consumers are most likely to see them. Overtime, the more they see your message, the more likely you are to win their business.

Although much is changing in the medical device industry, these takeaways are ideas that have been around for awhile, waiting to become standards. Use these to help guide your marketing endeavors as the industry continues to change so you can evolve along with it. To see more live tweets from the conference checkout #digdevices.

Photo courtesy of @jonathancatley 

Sales Enablement Med Device Marketers

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