The Audience Economy And Its Impact On Healthcare Media Strategies

Customers are demanding we satisfy their information needs as they manage and curate their own content. We have dubbed the shift to delivering messages to physicians and patients within an appropriate context, theAudience Economy.

No longer seeking mere eyes on the page, we now can offer our audiences meaningful information when and where they wish to engage with it. Within the Audience Economy, channels become secondary to audience and we are able to meld context, audience targeting and message. As media and search professionals, we are at the forefront of determining the best ways to capitalize on this evolving landscape.

Technology is our two-pronged partner in this meteoric advance; we learn about our customers quickly and profoundly and use programmatic tools to respond instantaneously. This real-time data response offers marketers tremendous flexibility and cost savings by allowing us to eliminate waste and focus on customers who have self-selected by engaging with content that aligns with the seller’s offering. Our partners now offer ways to email healthcare professionals (HCPs) after they’ve engaged in specialized content. This is de rigueur in the consumer landscape, but comparatively new to healthcare media. 



Many of our clients are unsure how to best use the data they’re collecting in terms of physician channel and content preference or how it can inform partner selection and audience targeting. Our clients grapple with the labyrinth of their Medical Legal Review (MLR) and internal infrastructure, together with a backdrop of a heavily regulated healthcare environment with its attendant legal and privacy limitations.

The complexity of patient journeys and varying needs and habits of multiple audiences (HCP and consumers) just muddies the waters as marketers seek to embrace the opportunity to meet their targets where they are engaging with their chosen content. Within healthcare media, choosing partnerships is dependent on our ability to marry our deep audience knowledge with data that allow us to optimize quickly based on content consumption.

Some of the best ways to embrace this entree into advanced technology, while remaining adherent to shifting legal requirements include:

  • Use of health focused programmatic trading which utilizes data to optimize in real time
  • Regular meetings with our clients’ MLR teams help to preemptively detail the nuances in our media and search strategies to put them at ease and speed up time to market
  • Working with brand teams to update internal corporate policies on digital, video and social media

Where do we go from here?

Our clients need our guidance to reorient their marketing work streams within this new Audience Economy. Many of their companies are still organizationally unable to be nimble in implementation of effective and rapidly changing digital programs. The kind of patient/customer level data needed to operate in the Audience Economy takes time and resources to build out before executing programs in real time.

Some of the ways you can pilot with your clients would be:

  • Begin to assert the need for new KPIs, which focus more closely reaching the customer within his or her chosen channel
  • Build and socialize case studies to reinforce positive outcomes of successful programs
  • Offer a brainstorming session with clients and selected partners; this will generate a deeper understanding of the landscape and create a solution mindset in bringing programs to market

The Audience Economy paradigm offers a way to reach HCPs with reduced spending and higher engagement because marketers can message to a self-selected audience of interested targets in the channels they most prefer.

By keeping the Audience Economy mindset at the forefront, marketers can use technical skills and savvy messaging to engage their most valued customers, gaining a significant competitive edge, resulting in greater share of prescriptions.

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