Friday, February 6, 2015

Rocking ROI: Taking an Integrated Marketing Approach

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This blog is co-posted with Medicine in the Moment.

Many clients find themselves contracting with different partners for different tactics, working one channel with one partner, and another channel with another partner, rather than looking at their network of tactics systematically. The business rationale for this, presumably, is that working with a partner that is highly specialized around one channel will yield the greatest results for that channel, and that, when the best results within each channel are achieved, those results will be the best for the business. Yet, we’ve seen evidence that the “specialized” approach often adds to less than the sum of its parts.

I’d like to make the case for an integrated marketing approach. With integration, all aspects of a media plan can be optimized, from strategy to measurement to results. An ecosystem in which the relationships among individual tactics can be understood and optimized, instead of scattering resources for short-term gains and siloed responses, unlocks potential for significant pay-offs across the board.

Yet, integration does not equate to lack of focus. Unified media plans still have the potential to be highly targeted, but become more cost-effective because they represent a smarter deployment of resources. One-off campaign initiatives rarely achieve this kind of success (to borrow an old adage, the right hand may not know what the left hand is doing). Sometimes, they may even compete with each other for results.

With an integrated marketing approach, you can experience greater accountability in terms of how your money and resources are spent. You can be more responsive—and divert resources from one aspect that isn’t working to fund an initiative that is.

Consider this case: a digital campaign for a mature cardiovascular drug that involved an eNewsletter, eDetail, eSample, and mobile tactics—with a methodology in place to measure the true impact of the campaign on prescribing.

The program was designed to reach a target audience of about 28,000 neurologists and primary care physicians; it provided several touch points for the user to engage with the brand. Upfront costs were minimized by tying program fees to actual incremental revenue generated by the campaign. During the first six months, NRx among physicians increased, resulting in $1.36 million in incremental revenue and a projected annual impact of over $4 million.

Some companies may be reluctant to commit to a large-scale investment with a single marketing partner. Yet, in our experience, well-executed efforts based on solid strategies and well-structured media planning mitigates risk while delivering intended value. Marking service providers with risk-sharing and accelerated ROI agreement structure have the ability to align corporate and agency incentives, positioning both parties to do well over the long run.

Author: Joe Caso, Chief Business Development Officer, Physicians Interactive.  

Physicians Interactive is a Gold Sponsor of this year's ePharma taking place February 24-26, 2015 in New York City.  As a reader of this blog, when you register to join us and mention code XP2000BL, you can save $100 off current rates!
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