Marketing for life science companies is all about finding and engaging with potential customers, clients and partners.
Sure there are the traditional marketing methods, such as print ads, telemarketing or networking at conferences, but maximising your marketing potential will causes limitations with traditional offline marketing.
Digital marketing offers plenty more, flexible opportunities to make sure that your life science company reaches the desired audience.
In this article, I will discuss some typical digital marketing channels to consider, and provide examples of how you can implement them into your overall scientific marketing strategy.
Here are some ideas – in no particular order:
SEO (Search Engine Optimisation)
First and foremost, one of the main ways that your audience finds and interacts with life science brands is through the use of search engines, such as Google, Bing or Yahoo.
There are two ways that an audience may approach this; firstly they are already aware of your brand and use a search engine to find your site.
Below, is an example of where somebody uses my name as a branded search and the first search result that shows up:
Secondly, they may look for a product, service or solution, with no brand or company name in mind.
The below example is a search for ‘Life Science SEO’, where my site shows up in the search results:
Either way, you need to ensure that you company is visible through search engines. That means by being able to find your branded website, or by finding key stakeholders and seeing where they are visible online.
If you offer products or services that best serve one locality, i.e. engineers to fix laboratory equipment, you will also need to ensure that you target the location(s) that you offer – and not just to anybody and everybody online!
I have written further about SEO for life sciences previously; just click the link to find out more.
Social media has too much of an impact on digital marketing to leave out of this list.
Although you may not consider, or want, your business to be associated with some social media accounts, there is definitely an importance of finding the right one(s) to focus on.
Social media helps you connect and engage with your audience.
For your followers that already follow your social media profiles, it is making sure that you are always present and reminding them of your presence in the market. This can be as simple as creating posts about what your team is working on, other customers you have worked with, testimonials, etc.
But there is also the potential to explain to your audience who knows little, or nothing about your business. If you can share content that is helpful, solves problems or simply interacts with professionals in your field, you will start to build a larger audience and introduce them to the top of your marketing or sales funnel.
Channels that are typically used by life science businesses include LinkedIn and Twitter, but there are also worthwhile causes to include networks such as Reddit or Instagram if you really want to build an audience this way!
Blog posts generally come under the term ‘content marketing’, but I have purposefully included this as a separate point before the next section in this post.
Blog posts are an informal way of producing content and publishing online via your website, perfect as part of a content marketing strategy.
There are almost no rules to publishing blog posts, as long as you make them the best they can be. This means creating content that is engaging, well written, has the necessary media or information where relevant but is ultimately useful to at least one person!
Blog posts can be incredibly beneficial to SEO; by planning content creation that is written about certain topics you want to be visible for online, you can find that blog posts generate traffic on an ongoing basis!
But that’s not it.
Blog posts are an incredible source of content, which can be re-purposed for other channels. Consider creating quotes from your blog posts or images, and sharing them elsewhere such as social media (mentioned above) or even via email (mentioned further below).
Additional Content Marketing
Blog posts may be considered the most common form of content marketing, but nowadays, there are plenty of alternative content marketing opportunities.
You should consider including into the mix, podcasts, videos and ebooks.
Creating a digital marketing strategy that encompasses all of these, plus other, examples of content marketing into the mix can quickly require a lot of time and money.
However, with some planning, there is the potential to re-use content across multiple use cases. For an example, videos can be turned into blog posts, podcasts turned into blog posts and multiple blog posts compiled in an ebook!
There is no right or wrong method here; just a bit of planning and implementation and you can soon have plenty of different types of content ready to utilise!
Traditional life science businesses may be fully aware of the impact of email as part of a digital marketing strategy, but even today, it is one channel where you truly have full control!
If you have (legally and ethically) acquired a list of emails of past, existing or potential customers, then you should be contacting them via email to let them know how you can continue to help them in the future.
This isn’t the authority to bombard your audience with sales and excessive marketing, but updating them on what is going on with the business, any special offers or providing other information that is useful and informative will keep your business at the front of their minds whenever they may require your products or services.
Typically, the same one email won’t be applicable to all of your audience all at once, so ensuring that you segment your audience into different ‘groups’ and communicating different messages with is likely to be most effective here.
Most email marketing tools will allow you to set up different lists and campaigns, so make sure you use it to its full potential.
And remember, your audience’s interests will change over time. Just because somebody doesn’t interact with your messages like they use to, or they just don’t read them, doesn’t mean you’re necessarily doing a bad job, it might just mean its time to cleanse your email list!
Most of the strategies mentioned already in this article are typically long term strategies, in that the longer they are implemented, typically the better the results.
However, sometimes it is not feasible or realistic to wait around to build an audience, let alone generate business.
This is where PPC comes in.
The paid strategy lets you determine the ads and the search terms you wish to be visible for and presents opportunities to generate leads and clients.
PPC requires money up front and it doesn’t always mean positive results.
But done well, and alongside some of the other digital marketing channels mentioned above, it can work wonders to an overall life science digital marketing strategy.
What strategy is best for me?
The purpose of this article is to highlight some of the digital marketing channels that lie science businesses can utilise to build their business.
It is not a case of picking a certain number of the above and sticking to that, but more a case of investigating which are best suited to your business and utilising correctly.
Some channels will have a better ROI than others, yet some will have a different impact of different periods of time.
The main thing is to be aware of them, how they change and what combined strategy will work for you.
If you are still not sure where to start, or you need advice with your life science digital marketing strategy, do not hesitate to get in contact with me for free, impartial advice.