5 tips for better online collaboration with your HCP customers

By Joseph Lester

Continuing with our series of posts inspired by the book 101 Ways to Transform Your Brand Strategy, this week we are looking at great ways to collaborate with your healthcare professional (HCP) customers online.  We have seen through our market research with Creation Pinpoint that many doctors and other healthcare professionals are really keen to communicate with one another using online platforms. Finding new ways to interact with these HCPs can help you to build strong relationships with your customers and serve them better.

In the book, Daniel Ghinn and Paul Grant say:

Digital and social media offer incredible potential for customer engagement, but can be complex environments for regulated pharmaceutical companies. By learning from real activity and views of healthcare professionals, you can develop successful digital strategies without the guesswork.

Here are 5 ways in which you can use insights from Creation Pinpoint studies collaborate with HCPs online:

  • Create Shareable Online Assets.

Create sharable online assets

Many social media users love to share content, and HCPs are no exception. The most shareable kind of content is visual or rich media, such as infographics or video. In the absence of these kinds of assets, we have seen HCPs take rigid PDF documents  supplied by pharma companies and adapt them themselves into tables and graphs for sharing online. Why not consider how your existing materials could be converted for social media by presenting them in easily-shareable forms?

  • Collaborate on Twitter

Collaborate on twitter

Twitter can be a great platform for connecting with your HCP customers, and empowering them to engage online. Why not consider including a medical expert in a Twitter chat, as Boehringer Ingelheim did when it hosted a COPD Twitter chat session with Prof. Andrew McIvor? By collaborating with Prof. McIvor in social media, Boehringer Ingelheim was able to profile his expertise in COPD online, adding value for both the pharmaceutical company and the professor.

  • Ask the right questions in closed social networks.

ask right questions

Closed doctors’ networks such as doctors.net.uk, Sermo or Coliquio provide communities of doctors that pharmaceutical companies can engage through targeted questionnaires and advertising. Before investing in a  survey in one of these closed networks it would benefit you to first see what HCPs are saying about your therapy area in public platforms. Being able to address any concerns or questions they have will better shape your market research in closed groups, allowing you to make the most of what can be a significant investment.

  • Train your medical team to use social media

train medical team

Is it time to give your medical team a social media 101? By offering your team some basic online training they will be better equipped to follow and engage with digital opinion leaders in your therapy area. They will also learn what content works well for different social media channels, helping the company to build a strong engagement strategy. Strengthening your team’s online skills can also transform the way you communicate offline, such as during a congress meeting.

  • Create a private linked in group.

private linked in group

In our first post in the 101 Ways to Transform Your Pharma Brand Strategy series, we highlighted that it is important to be where your HCP customers are so that you can collaborate with them better online. We have found that many HCPs use LinkedIn as a primary online platform. With this information you could decide to set up a private LinkedIn group to bring together important key and digital opinion leaders. Setting up a group provides a closed environment for conversations about your therapy area among your customers, whilst also offering a place for feedback and questions.

For pharmaceutical brands, engaging HCP customers online can be daunting, but with insights from their real behaviours and conversations in public social media, you can make informed decisions and develop successful strategies. To find out more about how Creation Healthcare can help you achieve this through Creation Pinpoint, our online HCP market research service, request a free presentation on HCPs in public social media.

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Meet the Author

Joseph Lester