We recently attended the MM+M Media Summit and they had no shortage of takeaways that had our industry buzzing throughout the event. Check out our learnings from trusted media partners and top pharma brands below.
Health equity is a big topic being discussed in our industry and this summit was no exception. With ROI commonly at the core of goals for pharma brands, health equity can be contradictory. However, there are ways we can help combat this. By using data to better understand underserved communities, brands can develop the right messaging to encourage patients to take care of their health. Brands can take those underserved communities into account when developing targeting strategies to boost awareness of treatment options and ensure they are not sequestered only to those with better access.
We noted from a panel that brands have a tendency to focus on offices where there is the highest propensity of patients to reach. This can result in inequity for populations that don’t live close to those offices. Brands can do better to broaden who they’re reaching and personalize messaging to the patients’ needs based on where they are in their journey.
Something that intrigued us during the summit was that brands should expand who their competitors are, it’s not necessarily only other pharma brands, but rather the disease state or condition their drugs treat. By finding ways to partner together, brands can drive better patient outcomes. As one panelist even said, “healthcare is a team sport.”
Misinformation was a hot topic throughout the summit, where panelists spoke at length about the challenges that misinformation creates and how it is the entire health industry’s responsibility to help fight against it. Doing so requires thinking big and finding ways to break through the noise. Regulation also needs to play a key role in fighting disinformation so that brands are held accountable for the consequences of their actions. Panelists spoke of the fight against disinformation on social media and often felt like they were playing whack-a-mole. It can be constant, but it is critical for brands to curb misinformation by being proactive about getting the truth out there.
Generative AI is on every marketer’s mind, including the panelists at the summit. Discussions centered around how AI has been at the core of programmatic technology for years now. And while the recent advances in AI will certainly drive further change in the programmatic space, we may not see a huge incline in disruption because healthcare marketing tends to move at a slower pace than other industries. Increased speed and efficiency using AI are the biggest opportunity areas where we should see the most impact in the near term, whether that be in the planning process to identify the right solutions faster or expediting the creative and MLR review processes.
Panelists also spoke of AI playing a big role in the pre-clinical trial phase, where brands will have the opportunity to move away from animal testing and speed up the process to get drugs in the hands of patients much faster. As for leveraging generative AI, even experts share they too are learning as the landscape is changing so quickly and constantly. The best brands and marketers can do is to continue to follow the latest updates and think about where there could be use cases to create value. Some ideas included measuring generative AI content against the content you were creating before as a benchmark of performance and ensuring that you are providing the right inputs and prompts to help the AI platforms develop content that is relevant and impactful. As one panelist said, “talk to your computer like it’s an intern, letting it know what you like and don’t like about the work it produced.”
Additional Notable Highlights
CTV is continuing to grow and brands need to further embrace this channel as a more targeted and efficient alternative to linear TV, which one pharma brand executive noted his peers continue to invest heavily in because “it’s what we’re comfortable in and it’s still considered a badge of honor to have your ad running on linear TV.” As marketers, we see growth in the discomfort.
Pharma brands need to put their fears aside if they want to be bold and innovative. As one panelist said, “too many brands claim they want new and innovative ideas, but then when presented with one they ask ‘where is the case study?’” This shows a hesitation if not unwillingness to be the first to market with something truly innovative. It’s also important to note here to not get so caught up in the buzz of searching for what’s innovative or flashy that you overlook the “simpler” tactics that have worked well and can continue to drive your KPIs.
Brands need to continue to personalize their messaging based on the patients’ needs and where they are in their journey. Serving patients with the right message at the right place and time is critical and all too often overlooked. Trust and embrace data to help you get there.
Staying on top of trends and learning from the industry’s top thought leaders is important to us and that’s why we value being able to attend events like the MM+M Media Summit. For more information on any of these topics or just to connect with our experts, reach out today!