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Pharma going virtual due to Covid-19

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Appetite Creative consider the digitalisation of the pharmaceutical sector because of Covid

The majority of industries in the world have been affected by the pandemic, including the pharmaceutical sector. As countries shut down borders, quarantines were put in place and movement restrictions became a part of daily life, where people, companies and employees had to adapt to a ‘new normal’.

Core to the pharmaceutical industry are in-person meetings with doctors, in-lab clinical trials, participation in large medical congresses to share clinical results and many other face-to-face activities. However, all of those engagements were halted during lockdown, either cancelled, postponed or moved online.

Pharma and virtual exposure

The pharma industry has increasingly adopted a virtual world over the past few years with the exponential increase in usage of online tools such as video calls, health management apps, social media, messaging platforms and more. Now, due to the pandemic, reliance on this new virtual reality only continues to grow. Many pharma companies have adopted online platforms and digital channels to share important information, such as results of clinical trials, as well as a boost in online meetings.

New ways of interaction between healthcare professionals

The virus has changed the way pharma representatives interact with doctors, which is likely to continue once the pandemic is over. Indeed, studies and trends show that many people will prefer the combined approach of virtual meetings where possible and in-person meetings where necessary. In addition to being a convenient form of communication, virtual meetings also prove to be fast, effective and both time and cost-efficient.

In a recent webinar, How to Connect with Healthcare Professionals and Consumers in the New Digital World, we discussed new ways of communication in the pharma industry. Take a look at the summary or watch the full webinar on YouTube. Key highlights include the shift from face-to-face meetings towards remote engagement and digital transformation that was pushed by the pandemic

Improved digital strategies

Previously, doctors and medical professionals tended to communicate with pharma companies through a single channel – the sales representatives. With this increased adoption of digital channels, the pharmaceutical industry will also benefit from improved digital strategy. Indeed, digital touchpoints now offer more communication options and other benefits such as accessibility of information, less time-consuming interactions and being able to fit more easily around a busy schedule.

Other benefits of digital channels

Additionally, pharma professionals can go virtual by using digital methods to offer online marketing and training materials. These can be in the format of training videos, emails, websites or webinars. The possibilities are endless and much less limited than that of conventional events, resources and conversations. By using online tools, the content offered can be personalised and tailored to specific audiences, allowing for a much better chance of reaching the desired target audience.

If you liked this article, you might also like our article How Digitalization Evolved in the UK During the Lockdown. And join us for our new webinar, What Impact Has Covid-19 Had on the Healthcare Industry?, this month by signing up for free here.

Jenny Stanley is the managing director of Appetite Creative.

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