June 26, 2021

How HLS Brands Can Achieve Modern Marketing Readiness

Workers in open office

Over the last five years, healthcare and life sciences (HLS) marketing teams have been faced with a challenging landscape: increasing customer expectations for highly personalized, highly relevant interactions, paired with a growing organizational demand to scale marketing capabilities across brands. Once the COVID-19 pandemic brought a sudden halt to face-to-face access to healthcare providers, many teams realized they were not equipped with the kind of modern marketing strategy and technology they needed to quickly shift focus and create digital-first experiences that delivered timely, relevant messages at scale.

To meet this unpredictable moment and define a clear path to digital transformation, organizations can look to the framework of modern marketing. At Intouch B2D, as healthcare marketing experts with 20+ years of experience, we rely on this methodology to help HLS brands understand their current opportunities and build a strong foundation for the future.

What is modern marketing?

Simply put, modern marketing is a gauge for our ability to influence customers with personalized experiences which demonstrate an understanding and caring for their needs.

Modern marketing is centered around the concept of building flexible foundations. An organization at modern marketing maturity empowers its teams to foresee change and respond reflexively — continually providing valuable customer experiences that demonstrate care and anticipate needs.

Our Modern Marketing white paper lays out this framework and how to assess an organization’s maturity in great detail. But to get a high-level perspective, it’s helpful to explore the three lenses of modern marketing: data relevance, customer experience and applied technology.

The three lenses of modern marketing maturity

Do you find your brands often struggle to access correlating data to support customer efforts? Do you wish you could mine your data for actionable insights more effectively? We probe into these questions while evaluating data relevance maturity, an organization’s ability to use data in customer identification and targeting, engagement and insight optimization. For example, an immature organization might collect data, but doesn’t actually leverage it to engage with customers in a personalized way. A somewhat mature brand could collect customer data and use it to segment and strategically target an audience. And an HLS marketing team on the mature end of the data relevance spectrum is using data not only to strategically target their customers but to drive strategy, surface insights and populate attribution modeling to anticipate customer needs.

How do you think your customers would evaluate their experience when engaging with your brand? Do they receive tailored messaging based on their behavior and data signals? These are the questions raised as we explore customer experience maturity, assessing channel selection, personalization and empowerment, and dynamism of engagement. In an immature organization, a marketing team will simply execute against channel-specific best practices. As a team matures, they’ll layer in distributed content strategy and segment by customer preferences. For truly mature brands, real-time and predictive data drives orchestration of customized experiences across channels and creates one-to-one dialogue.

Do you find that your tech stack closes more doors than it opens? Do different teams or brands use different tools to accomplish similar tasks? We delve into these questions as we review the applied technology that powers marketing activities, assessing an organization’s ability to scale marketing processes, strategies for adoption and system integrity, and approach to integration and implementation. Teams on the lower end of the maturity continuum tend to reactively implement technology in siloes, while more mature organizations apply governance and change-management to drive organizational adoption across brands. The top-performing teams have mastered data-driven marketing automation and harness intelligence to foster decision-making and customer-driven optimization.

Assessing modern marketing readiness

Our modern marketing maturity assessment workshop can help your organization quickly gain alignment on your current state of readiness to delivery expectational customer experiences for your commercial brands. It may feel intimidating to take an honest, no-holds-barred look at your organization’s performance, but the outcome is actually quite empowering — knowing where you stand means you can plan your path forward.

Some organizations may demonstrate a high level of maturity through one lens while falling short in another. To achieve true modern marketing readiness, however, all three segments must be elevated.

We evaluate this cumulative modern marketing maturity across five levels, each associated with an area of operational focus: Disconnected (channel-specific performance), Distributed (maintaining creative consistency), Optimized (collecting data and building customer profiles), Dynamic (mining insights and automating processes) and Transformed (anticipating customer needs by leveraging artificial intelligence and attribution modeling).

Understanding where your team falls on this spectrum is the first step to transformational change. What awaits you at the end of the journey? The ability to provide personalized HLS marketing at scale to drive your business forward by connecting you to new customers while strengthening existing relationships.

Get a new view of your marketing maturity

This is just a brief introduction to the robust framework of modern marketing maturity. To understand the full model and review the assessment questions, download the white paper.

And if your team could benefit from an expert guide as you take these first few steps, Intouch B2D offers customized, interactive workshops for individual brands, marketing organizations or cross-functional operational groups. With decades of hands-on experience in HLS marketing, our team understands the complexities of achieving modern marketing maturity — and is ready to accompany yours on the path forward, helping to bring your future into focus.