Smarter Marketing in Action: Highlights from Digital Pharma East 2023

September 21, 2023
Sanwari Gupta

As one of the industry’s largest annual convenings, Digital Pharma East brings thousands of thought leaders and experts together over four days to shape the future of pharma marketing. PulsePoint had the privilege of attending this year’s conference as well as participating in and leading several panel discussions about smarter marketing, omnichannel campaigns, and optimizing DTC marketing. We walked away with new insights, reinvigorated to continue developing technology at the cutting edge of the digital healthcare frontier.

The themes of this year’s conference were omnichannel engagement, HCP engagement, patient solutions, and media, with featured speakers from many of pharma’s top players, including Bristol-Myers Squibb, Medscape, Komodo Health, Eisai, CMI Media Group, and Bayer Pharmaceuticals. Not able to join? Read on for a brief recap of PulsePoint’s sessions as well as our key takeaways:

PulsePoint Keynote: One Brand’s Journey Towards Delivering Smarter Marketing

Malcolm Halle, VP of Strategic Accounts at PulsePoint, sat down with Glenniss Richards, Sr. Director of Digital Media Activation at Bayer, to talk about how “smarter marketing” helped Bayer overhaul their omnichannel campaigns.

Malcolm started with a brief introduction of “smarter marketing.” It all comes down to seamlessly connecting intelligence with marketing activation in near-real time, he said, and this is a big change from traditional workflows that were built on disparate technology stacks and clunky information-sharing processes.

After realizing that their media buys were fragmented and siloed across the company, Glenniss’ team at Bayer decided to implement a smarter marketing approach. To streamline their consumer omnichannel experience, they connected their TV buys with their digital outreach campaigns and encouraged collaboration between their digital strategists and their brand team, ensuring a fully integrated approach across both technology and people.

“It is a continuously evolving journey, so while we launched quickly, we can validate and quantify our reach across our target audiences,” Glenniss said. “We’re also getting the appropriate insights to make dynamic changes across other placements."

Panel Discussion: Effectively Implementing a Next-Best-Action Strategy to Enable Omnichannel Orchestration

What is a next-best-action strategy and how can a brand use it to enable a true omnichannel campaign? PulsePoint’s VP of Platform Becky Hallam joined experts from GSK, CMI Media Group, and Eisai to talk about creating a more customer-centric approach, as well as how to use AI and machine learning to improve and scale next-best actions.

Moderated by Elaine Gamble, CNS Omnichannel Strategy and Experience at Otsuka Pharmaceutical, the panel focused on how brands can engage thoughtfully with patients and physicians at both a massive scale and on an individual level.‍

“That’s where platforms come in,” Becky said. By leveraging the latest technology offered by platforms, brands can understand where audiences are in their journeys and automate the system that allows them to connect with audiences individually, all while ensuring there’s one centralized structure across all entities.‍

Kallie Carter, Senior Director at Eisai, made the point that only about half of the industry has made moves into omnichannel, even though the technology for it is available. While omnichannel can be intimidating for many, Becky said that the best way to build an omnichannel campaign is to prioritize the technology, figure out what works, and then scale from there.‍

Panel Discussion: Maximize the Efficiency of DTC Marketing to Drive Better Engagement

Consumers today are better informed and educated than ever before, and they have access to more information. They want relevant content quickly, which means DTC marketers need to understand their unique mindsets and behaviors and reach them where they are—and at the right time.

This panel brought together PulsePoint Senior VP of Data & Analytics Jonathan Zile with patient and consumer outreach experts from Healthline Media, Janssen NA, and Dermavent Sciences to discuss the best channels for DTC outreach, as well as the benefits and limitations of each.‍

The panelists gave examples of the channels they’re currently leveraging, as well as the steps they’re taking to build trust with patients. Every patient journey, from symptoms to diagnosis and treatment, is different, Jonathan said, and each campaign to reach those patients has different needs. For example, many brands use audience quality (AQ) to measure success. AQ is an incredibly powerful metric that tells the marketer if they’re actually reaching the intended patient, Jonathan said, but it’s also important to look beyond AQ to metrics such as new patients and script lift to really leverage your data and optimize for success.‍

In addition to our sessions, PulsePoint and Medscape hosted Digital Pharma East's biggest party to kick-off the conference on a high note. The Gatsby-themed event transported guests to the glamorous 1920s and was a great way to celebrate everything we had accomplished alongside fellow industry leaders, clients, and friends.‍

Join us at our next event or contact us for more information:

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