It’s no secret that traditional marketing methods are increasingly slipping onto the back burner in favour of digital marketing trends. After all, marketing is all about communicating the value of your products and services to your potential customers, and where are all your potential customers these days? Online.
E-newsletters are no longer considered a revolutionary marketing technique. Nor is social media marketing, pay-per-click advertising or search engine optimisation – techniques that pose every company challenges, regardless of the industry.
So, where does that leave the heavily regulated pharmaceutical industry? Many choose to sit back and ignore the social media volcano erupting around them, using their lack of time, guidance or know-how as excuses. Others, though, do embrace the opportunity to enhance their online presence and connect with their customers with a little help from PR and marketing agencies.
If you think your company is missing an opportunity and you’d like to get social with your potential customers, here are some tips to ensure you never miss a trick.
Set yourself apart as an industry leader with the content you share
Although it’s important to update company profiles regularly, it’s also important to remember quality over quantity. Those who follow your company on social media will expect you to be expert in what’s happening in your industry, so you should utilise your profiles to share interesting and relevant articles you’ve read, as well as your own company news. At ramarketing, we recommend our clients add a blog section to their websites so they can write opinion pieces on industry trends or events which helps set them apart as industry leaders. This also makes for great content to share on social media and is an excellent way of adding personality to your company.
Collate a network of industry relevant connections
Just as important online as it is offline, you need to ensure you’re connecting with the right people, whether this be leads, existing clients, suppliers or information sources. If you decide to create social media profiles for your company it’s important to connect with relevant accounts and collate a network of industry relevant contacts. This means you’ll see relevant content in your timelines, giving you content to interact with and share with your own network of followers. It also gives you a platform to lay foundations for working relationships offline.
Utilise images and videos where possible
That old saying “a picture paints a thousand words” is also relevant on social media, as research finds that posts with an image or video get 53% more engagement compared to plain text (Hubspot research). Something attractive, relevant and compelling can go a long way to bring your content to life. Whether it be images of your equipment, your team, or short videos sharing tips and tricks, if it’s relevant to what you want to say, use it.
Choose the right platforms
With social media there’s no one size fits all approach. There’s no point creating a company profile on every social media site going to try and have a presence. Do a bit digging to see what you can do on each profile and whether that’ll work for your company. The more profiles you have, the more you’ll have to update them with relevant content. At ramarketing, none of our pharmaceutical clients have Facebook accounts. Instead, they utilise Twitter and LinkedIn, as that’s where their target audiences are. Rather than create a profile for the sake of it, they’ve found what works and where the people they want to connect with go.
Although it can be difficult to measure a return on investment for time and money spent on social media, it can be used to gather intelligence which can support business development or recruitment, or competitor monitoring. By monitoring who’s following your company on social media, you can judge why they’re following you. Are they recent graduates who’ve re-shared posts about vacancies within your business? Are they contacts you’ve met at a recent conference? Are they competitors trying to see what your business is up to? Or, could they be a business you’ve been trying to connect with for a while?
It’s a social media jungle out there, but with professional guidance and perseverance you can navigate the chaos to get reach your customers and create a stronger relationship with them.