When developing a promotion plan, most Life Sciences companies ensure that the message is delivered through multiple channels. It’s almost as if companies go through a check list:
Sales force? Check! Banner ads? Check!
Website? Check! Email? Check!
Direct Mail? Check! Peer to peer? Check!
Television advertising? Check!
And once these promotion channels are in market, how do we know they are working? Almost all companies track activity data – details from the sales force; click through rates / cost per click from banner ads; website visits / length of visits for websites; open rates for emails, etc. And for traditional promotion – sales force, television advertising – efforts are made to link promotion to changes in sales.
However, when it comes to digital data, most companies simply track activity data in aggregate. I’ve seen many brand teams with reports providing insight into this week’s click through rate and cost per click. Typically these reports will show trends as well. For example:
“Click through rate decreased from 0.2 to 0.18 week over week”
“Cost per impression decreased from $1.01 to $0.97 week over week”
Brand teams then make further investment decisions based upon this activity data.
This is a missed opportunity. Digital data can be tracked at the cookie / IP address level. This data can then be merged with other customer level data. Using the combined digital and off-line data, statistical modeling can be used to develop an empirical relationship between digital investment and sales gain. Promotion optimization decisions can then be made based upon the amount of sales generated, not by the level of engagement with the digital asset. In fact, we have seen data showing that the highest ROIs are not necessarily generated from digital assets with the highest engagement activity.
So, if you are spending the money to promote using digital channels, spend a little extra time in setting up the process to collect the digital data at the cookie / IP address level. You’ll be glad you did!