B2B Healthcare Marketing in 2024: A Comprehensive Guide
Elevate your B2B healthcare marketing strategy with our comprehensive guide for 2024. Learn the latest trends and tactics on our blog.
January 8, 2024
The healthcare sector is highly competitive. Companies that sell to healthcare organizations need an innovative marketing strategy. In this post, we'll cover everything you need to know about business-to-business (B2B) healthcare marketing in 2024, including:
The latest market trends in healthcare
B2B marketing strategies and best practices
Overcoming the challenges of marketing in the healthcare industry
What Is B2B Healthcare Marketing?
B2B healthcare marketing is the process of promoting and selling products or services to other healthcare organizations, such as hospitals, clinics, and pharmaceutical companies. This type of marketing requires a deep understanding of the market, industry trends, and the specific needs and challenges healthcare businesses face.
B2B Healthcare Marketing Trends in 2024
A recent article by Smart Insights listed four trends in the healthcare space for 2024:
- Digital transformation
- Direct-to-consumer (D2C) approaches
Digital Transformation in the Healthcare Market
Digital transformation refers to the integration and use of technology in all areas of business and care. This transition has changed how providers deliver services. Digital transformation aims to optimize processes, improve patient outcomes, reduce costs, and enhance patient experiences.
Here are some examples of how digital transformation is taking place in healthcare:
Electronic Health Records (EHRs): These digital health records provide real-time, patient-centered information instantly and securely to authorized providers.
Telemedicine: Allows healthcare professionals to evaluate, diagnose, and treat patients at a distance. This can improve access to services in rural areas or for immobile patients. The next section of this post covers telehealth in more detail.
Mobile Health Apps: These health applications help patients manage their health and wellness, access health information, schedule appointments, and more--right from their smartphones or tablets.
Wearable Technology: Devices like Fitbits and Apple Watches offer ways to monitor aspects of a person's health, like heart rate, sleep patterns, and physical activity. Data from these devices can be shared with doctors to provide real-time health monitoring.
Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Machine Learning (ML): AI is being used for everything from sorting through medical images to helping design treatment plans. It can also be used to monitor patients' vital signs to predict potential health issues.
Online Scheduling and Prescription Services: Many hospitals and clinics can schedule appointments and have prescriptions filled online and shipped to the patient.
Virtual Reality (VR): VR has several uses, such as training doctors, surgery simulations, and patient treatment. For example, it can be used to help stroke patients recover faster by creating virtual environments they can interact with as part of their therapy.
Chatbots: Healthcare providers use chatbots online to manage patient queries, schedule appointments, or even diagnose conditions based on symptoms.
How Healthcare Marketers Can Embrace Digital Transformation
B2B marketers can use digital channels and platforms to expand their client base in several ways.
First, marketers can leverage programmatic advertising. This type of advertising uses AI to automate ad buying, which enables marketers to target more specific audiences. IBM uses AI to deliver personalized ads to diverse industry stakeholders. This strategy makes it easier for them to reach many different client types.
Quality content marketing now goes beyond blog posts to include video marketing, infographics, and podcasts. Siemens, for example, employs videos and webinars to explain complex industrial products to potential customers.
Augmented Reality (AR) and Virtual Reality (VR) are other resources for B2B marketers. Businesses like Ikea set the standard using AR to let customers visualize products in their homes. Marketers can use this strategy to demonstrate their product's value during trade shows or presentations.
Social media marketing is playing a bigger role in lead generation. For instance, marketers can use advanced targeting and retargeting techniques on LinkedIn to attract clients. A case in point is Adobe. They've created a LinkedIn marketing strategy using personalization. As a result, the brand saw a significant spike in engagement, customer acquisition, and return on investment.
CRM systems enable B2B marketers to efficiently manage customer relationships and interactions with prospects. These digital solutions enable marketers to predict customer behavior.
Digital Healthcare Marketing Campaigns
Digital marketing allows businesses to reach a wider audience through various online channels. Social media, email marketing, and search engine optimization (SEO) are examples. Companies can create targeted digital campaigns for brand awareness and lead generation. Digital platforms provide data and analytics that can help marketers optimize campaigns for better results.
Digital channels offer a cost-effective solution for B2B healthcare marketing professionals. Compared to traditional methods, such as print advertising or trade shows, businesses can use digital to reach a larger audience at a fraction of the cost. Digital channels also make it easier to allocate the marketing budget efficiently reach the right people on platforms they prefer to use.
As the COVID-19 pandemic unfolded, telehealth and remote patient monitoring (RPM) solutions helped providers deliver vital patient support in various locations and situations.
Since then, these technologies have expanded access to healthcare services. Telehealth makes it possible for patients to consult with physicians from the comfort of their homes. This minimizes the risk of infection, saves travel time, and reduces costs.
RPM technology allows physicians to monitor a patient's health data in real-time using wearable devices and IoT technology. This technology enables physicians to detect potential health issues earlier.
Telehealth as a Healthcare Product
If your company offers telehealth solutions, consider these strategic marketing approaches:
Content Marketing Strategy: Create informative content highlighting the benefits of telehealth. Share this content with professionals, policymakers, and other essential parties to spread the word and get more referrals.
Social Media Engagement: Use social media platforms such as LinkedIn and Twitter to promote the advantages of telehealth services and educate healthcare professionals and consumers alike about its benefits.
Telehealth Training: Provide telehealth training to equip providers with the knowledge and skills to use telehealth services effectively. This strategy has been shown to increase the adoption rate of telehealth services.
Case Studies: Develop case studies demonstrating telehealth's impact on patient care. Share these case studies with providers and stakeholders to help them understand the tangible value of telehealth.
E-detailing (electronic detailing) uses online content like videos and webinars designed to build partnerships with healthcare professionals and pharmaceutical and MedTech companies. Digital sales content delivered through mobile devices can increase interactivity and capture providers' attention. It also allows tracking, providing valuable data to meet providers' needs.
To maximize the benefits of e-detailing, follow these strategies:
- Use a Digital CRM: Track interactions, look for patterns, and plan to follow-up using customer relationship management (CRM) tools.
- Timely Follow-ups: Regular follow-ups are crucial in converting leads into customers. Automate this process with e-detailing to ensure no leads slip away.
- Provide Expert Consultations: Offering virtual expert consultations through video calls or webinars adds value and builds trust with potential clients.
- Use Data Analytics: Leverage the wealth of customer behavior data generated by e-detailing to refine your marketing strategy.
With the right tools and tactics, e-detailing can transform interested consumers into long-term clients.
The one-size-fits-all marketing approach can have costly implications. But when marketers take the time to understand potential clients' needs, wants, and pain points, they can create marketing messages that resonate. This makes all the difference.
B2B marketing in the healthcare sector doesn't involve throwing information en masse to anyone and everyone. Instead, companies must develop the customer journey (or buyer's journey) and a personalized marketing strategy.
To develop the buyer journey, marketers must understand how the client will interact with their brand from the initial discovery stage through consideration, decision-making, and beyond.
Using Data Insights to Improve Healthcare Marketing Strategies
Data insights can help marketers uncover new opportunities. For instance, a pharmaceutical company can use data analysis to determine which geographical areas have a higher prevalence of a specific disease. Then, they can focus on promoting medication that treats this disease to providers in those areas.
It's also important not to overlook thought leadership. Sharing expert content and insights strengthens a marketer's authority. For example, a company specializing in healthcare IT solutions can regularly publish white papers or host webinars on the latest industry challenges. As a result, they can showcase their expertise and become a go-to resource for potential clients.
Marketing Challenges in the Healthcare Industry
Healthcare marketing professionals face unique challenges for many reasons. Here are the most common:
HIPAA Compliance: The Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) sets stringent rules regarding using and disclosing protected health information. This can limit personalization and make it challenging for marketers to reach their intended audience.
Public Perception of Healthcare: The industry is often viewed with skepticism and mistrust. This challenges marketers who must build trust and credibility with their audience.
Tight Budgets: Healthcare organizations often operate on tight budgets. Limited resources can limit the amount of funding available for marketing initiatives.
Increased Competition: With so many healthcare businesses vying for the same market share, standing out from the crowd is a significant challenge. Companies must focus on building strong brand positioning to remain competitive.
Technological Advancements: Technology advances rapidly in the healthcare sector. So, marketers must continually update their strategies and tactics to stay relevant.
Measuring Success in B2B Healthcare Marketing
Measuring success in B2B healthcare marketing can be complex. However, tracking results and ROI with the right key performance indicators and tools is possible.
For example, businesses can track the number of leads generated, the number of conversions, and the cost per lead. This data can be used to calculate the ROI of their marketing efforts and help them improve their campaigns.
Understanding the revenue attribution for each campaign is another essential metric. Calculating the customer acquisition cost (CAC) and customer lifetime value (CLV) helps evaluate the results that impact the bottom line.
Engagement metrics, such as click-through rates and social media interactions, are essential when tracking brand awareness. However, don't put too much focus on these vanity metrics. Likes are nice to get, but comments and shares drive conversions.
KPIs paint a picture of campaign performance. Healthcare marketing professionals can monitor these metrics to stay on top of trends, establish benchmarks, and measure progress toward business objectives. However, they should also use A/B testing to fine-tune their campaign strategy.
A/B testing is a way to compare two versions of a single variable to determine which one performs better. This technique offers quantifiable data on what impacts the target audience. This information shows you exactly what to do to get better results.
Do you need help with B2B Healthcare Marketing?
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