One of the fundamental steps of growing a business is getting a product in front of more people. Whether a local shop or a multinational corporation, all businesses benefit from a marketing strategy that makes people aware of their product and drives them to buy.
The majority of companies can follow roughly the same formula, but there are certain industries that have a certain amount of red tape to deal with while promoting their products. The pharmaceutical industry has seen a huge boom since marketing became more commonplace, but advertising regulated substances brings its own share of challenges that companies might need a little help to overcome.
Just as a prescription drug can improve a patient’s health, a comprehensive “prescription” for marketing pharmaceuticals can put your products on the map. A dedicated pharmaceutical advertising firm is a valuable partner to have while growing your business. Let’s talk about why.
While most companies have a good amount of leeway in the type of advertising they engage in, the same cannot be said for manufacturers of pharmaceuticals.
These companies create a valuable product that can really make a difference in people’s lives, but anything with an impact on patient health is heavily regulated by agencies like the FDA.
If there’s one thing that can stop a company’s growth in its tracks, it’s getting sued by consumers or fined by regulatory bodies for failing to follow the rules that are put in place to promote responsible marketing.
When marketing pharmaceuticals, it’s incredibly risky to dive in without a solid understanding of the limits and format that advertising has to take. Many medications are prescription only and can be dangerous if used incorrectly, so it’s important that pharmaceutical manufacturers stay on the straight and narrow when it comes to promoting their products.
Sometimes even companies with the best of intentions can find themselves in hot water due to failure to adhere to the strict regulations put in place to protect patients.
In this sort of situation, it just really isn’t feasible to leave marketing to anything less than a marketing firm familiar with the ins and outs of the industry. Pharmaceutical marketing takes specialized knowledge and a firm with significant experience navigating an arena rife with regulation.
Just as a patient would trust a doctor to take care of their health due to years of training and extensive knowledge, it’s important for pharmaceutical companies to recognize when it's time to put their outreach in the hands of the experts.
The majority of businesses function pretty similarly. Whether you’re selling Pizza or IT services, the basic idea boils down to providing a product or service to a customer and turning a profit.
The same can be said for the pharmaceutical industry, with one major catch: the prescription model.
There’s an incredible potential for profit within the industry, and major drug companies are taking in billions of dollars each year - and a large part of that success is through marketing. But unlike most businesses that can sell their product directly to the consumer, a drug company needs to pass through the middleman of a doctor in the majority of cases.
What sets pharmaceutical marketing companies apart from a traditional marketing firm is their understanding of the business model and the type of advertising that is necessary to raise awareness of pharmaceuticals and convince medical professionals to prescribe them to patients.
Oftentimes pharmaceutical marketing companies will be marketing to doctors as much as they will the patient, so it’s really important to have a firm with a really solid understanding of both sides of the equation.
We talked a bit about the regulations that make marketing pharmaceuticals a complicated task, but the truth is that those rules are put in place for a reason.
A quality marketing firm will be able to navigate the complications that advertising within the industry has by default, while providing value and accurate information to the consumer.
While profit is a motivator for pharmaceutical companies as much as it is any other business, these companies also provide a product that can significantly improve the quality of people’s lives. Effective marketing should drive sales, but it should also provide accurate and realistic information about the benefits that the medication has to offer.
Patients are putting a lot of trust in a drug company when they take a new medication, and it’s important that a marketing firm be able to foster that trust without misleading consumers.
A lot of this article has focused on what sets the pharmaceutical industry apart from the general business community, but the basics of marketing are the same regardless of the industry.
Sure, there are some extra hoops to jump through and specific strategies to keep in mind when marketing pharmaceuticals, but it’s important not to neglect the same services that position successful companies ahead of the competition.
Seek out a pharmaceutical marketing company with a background in the industry, but make sure that they have experience in more general marketing as well. A telling sign of a top-quality marketing company is the ability of their team to adjust dynamically to suit the needs of your business, and while general marketing success may not always translate to expertise in pharmaceuticals, it’s often a decent indicator.
Just like any company, there are a variety of aspects that all combine to form a quality marketing strategy. A full-service digital firm can handle creating advertisements that work within a regulated environment, but they can also handle aspects like SEO and CRO, social media management, the balance between marketing to providers and patients, and so much more.
Simply put, when you pay for a marketing firm, you should be getting the whole package. Focus on the health of the patients, and put the health of your marketing in the hands of equally capable professionals.
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