Skip links

Omnichannel Success Series, Part 1: The Evolution from Multichannel Strategies

Unleashing the Power of Omnichannel in Pharma: The Evolution from Multichannel Strategies.

This four part ‘Omnichannel Success’ series, created in collaboration with Uptake’s in-house omnichannel and digital healthcare consultancy experts, aims to demonstrate actionable ways to unlock of the power of an omnichannel marketing strategy in the healthcare sector. With each part, we have included a free resource to help you shift from thought to action. Scroll to the bottom for the download.

In the ever-evolving landscape of the pharmaceutical industry, adaptability is key. One of the most significant shifts we have seen in recent years has been the transition from traditional multichannel strategies to a more dynamic and customer-centric approach known as omnichannel. In this article we explore the evolution of this concept and delve into the key elements driving the transformation within the pharma marketing industry, to best equip you with the skills needed and inspire exceptional omnichannel strategies and success.

Omnichannel vs multichannel: Understanding the difference

For years, the pharma industry has relied on multichannel strategies to engage with healthcare professionals (HCPs) and patients, but what does multichannelmean and how does it differ from Omnichannel? Before explaining this, it’s important to understand what is meant by channel as part of your approach to anomnichannel strategy.

A channel is any way that you communicate to your clients to promote your brand or a service you offer. This could be face-to-face meetings with patients orHCP’s, a website, brand emails, phone calls, social media or even physical media such as billboards or printed advertisements. These channels can all be used as part of a multichannel or omnichannel strategy, so let’s take a closer look at the differences between the two.

Multichannel marketing

A multichannel strategy typically involves utilising several channels such as sales representatives, digital channels, including your website and email marketing, as well as traditional advertising to communicate with a target audience. However, these channels usually operate independently of each other, meaning theaudience may see different brand messaging or have a different experience depending on the channel they use.

While multichannel marketing strategies have proved to be effective to some extent, they have often lacked cohesion and have struggled to provide a seamless experience across various touch points often resulting in poor customer journeys.

Omnichannel marketing

Omnichannel marketing utilises the same channels as multichannel, however its aim is to allow the audience to seamlessly continue their journey between different channels regardless of their initial contact with the brand. This consistent journey is more likely to engage the audience and helps increase the likelihood of them using that brand’s services.

The Birth of Omnichannel

The pharma industry has recognised the need for a more integrated and customer-centric approach to its pharmaceutical marketing which will allow it to reach and engage both HCP’s and patients alike, and with that, the concept of omnichannel was born. In contrast to traditional multichannel strategies, which have focused on individual communication channels in isolation, omnichannel strategies aim to create a unified and harmonised experience across all touchpoints. This omnichannel approach understands the value of the patient and puts them in the centre of strategies. It acknowledges that patients and HCPs interact with multiple channels simultaneously. Omnichannel marketing seeks to deliver a consistent and personalised experience throughout their journey to make a positive impact ontheir lives regardless of which channel they use.

Customer-Centricity at the Core: One of the central themes driving the evolution towards omnichannel strategies is the focus on customer-centricity. Today’s empowered HCPs and patients expect personalised, relevant, and timely interactions with their chosen pharmaceutical brand. By embracing omnichannel strategies, we can gain a deeper understanding of customers’ needs, preferences, and behaviours. This knowledge will allow us to better understand the challenges they face and help us to deliver tailored content, support, and resources across various touch points, ultimately helping to build customer engagement and satisfaction.

Seamless Integration and Data Synergy: Omnichannel strategies also emphasise the importance of seamless integration and data synergy. By leveraging advanced technologies, pharma companies can integrate data from different digital marketing channels such as social media, websites, mobile apps, and patient portals. Integrating data supports a holistic view of interactions and preferences, which facilitates the delivery of targeted and personalised communication across channels.

Furthermore, through the use of advanced analytics, a data-driven approach enables the industry to gather insights and measure the effectiveness ofomnichannel initiatives, helping to optimise future strategies and tactics over different channels.

Empowering HCPs and Patients: Another key theme in the evolution towards omnichannel strategies is the empowerment of HCPs and patients. HCPs requireaccess to comprehensive and up-to-date information about medications, treatment guidelines, clinical trials, and more. By harnessing the power of omnichannel strategies, we can provide HCPs with easily accessible resources, educational materials, and digital tools that support their decision-making process. Similarly, patients can benefit from the improved customer experience offered by an omnichannel strategy through educational content, face to face visits, disease management tools, remote monitoring, and convenient access to healthcare services such as drug delivery.

The transition from traditional engagement to omnichannel pharma strategies represents a significant paradigm shift in the pharmaceutical industry. With patient-centricity, seamless integration, data synergy, and empowerment at its core, cohesive omnichannel experience strategies pave the way for more effective and personalised ways to engage HCPs and patients. As pharma marketers, if we collectively embrace the benefits of omnichannel strategies, we enable pharmaceutical companies to enhance their relationships, improve patient outcomes, and contribute to the overall advancement of healthcare in the digital age to positively enhance and change more patients’ lives. By staying ahead of the curve and embracing the omnichannel concept at the right time, our industry can unlock the full potential of our omnichannel engagement strategies and help increase commercial growth across all channels for the brands we work with.

You can read part two of this series of articles, Transforming Brand Planning for Enhanced Customer Experiences here.

Get started

With our free resource: the Uptake ‘omnichannel strategies implementation checklist’.

Speak to the experts

At Uptake our digital and omnichannel experts are well-versed in the intricacies of omnichannel success and can provide bespoke guidance and expertise to drive your team towards excellence in customer-centric engagement.

Contact us for healthcare consultancy from our experienced team