Though the Web has been around for 20 years, pharma marketers still struggle to understand precisely how HCPs use their brand websites. Google Analytics can identify your most popular content, determine what people are searching for on your site, and provide other aggregate performance data. But, as you know, it can’t provide specifics about individual website visitors. It can’t tell you what content works best by specialty or what path physicians, as compared to mid-level prescribers or nurses, follow across your website.
We first launched the Audience Identity Manager℠ (AIM) in June, and we have recently accumulated enough data to reveal some interesting insights about individual physician website behavior. One of the first things we noted is that physicians aren’t really using the HCP-centric websites that brands design especially for them.
Engaging the Individual Visitor
In the age of content marketing, providing a steady stream of relevant, high-quality information is essential for engaging HCPs, developing their loyalty, and converting them to prescribers. Often, this content resides on a special physician-centric portion of the brand website.
This is a great approach, in theory. A separate HCP-facing website should make it easier for physicians to find what they’re looking for. It also allows brands to make their primary website consumer-friendly, which is increasingly important as consumers become better informed and more involved in their own healthcare decisions. The problem is that more physicians use brand consumer sites than view physician sites. This isn’t a guess. Our audience identity management technology has reported this browsing behavior on actual pharma websites.
Because AIM recognizes all of the tagged HCPs who visit a specific website, it can track their individual journeys across that site. We’ve analyzed this data to identify patterns, including whether physicians navigate from the brand home page directly to the professional information available on a physician site – or instead, wander through consumer-focused articles looking for the clinical trials data and dosing information they need.
What You Can Do About It
AIM data can’t tell us why physicians are using consumer sites, but we have some ideas. Often, the link to the physician site is just hyperlinked text in a small font. Its placement in the upper right corner of the home page is easy to miss. On other websites, the physician link is buried in a drop-down list of the brand’s other websites.
You can test this theory by increasing the font size or placing the link in a more prominent place. Pharma companies that use AIM can determine how many physicians use their physician site now and compare that data to the number who use the site after the link has been improved.