ELITE 2021 Strategist Leah Christoffersen of Merkle

Leah Christoffersen

Senior Strategy Manager


Providing Vaccination Opportunity Information

As a global society that has had to drastically change how we live due to COVID-19, we are all ready to get back to a life that resembles normal. A key part of that is the vaccine. With a leading retail pharmacy tasked with vaccinating America as her client at Merkle, Leah Christoffersen was presented with perhaps the most crucial challenge of her career.

Knowing that demand would be drastically exceeding supply in early 2021, Leah proposed fast-tracking a way to capture the interest of consumers who were shopping around to see when and where they can get vaccinated. By harnessing this consumer interest, in the form of email sign-ups, her client could then maintain a multichannel relationship with interested customers during the waiting period between interest and local vaccine availability/eligibility. Keeping interested customers informed and lightly engaged with the brand is key to increasing the likelihood that the customer will choose to come to them (and not a competitor) when the vaccine is available.

So, she helped develop a substantial, MarTech-enabled customer nurture journey for her retail pharmacy client. In just the first three weeks of being consumer-facing, over 1.1 million people have already signed up to receive weekly COVID-19 information, tips, and expert advice. Of these interested customers, 32% are net new and 16% are re-activated—expanding and re-invigorating digital customer relationships. Additionally, 60% of these sign-ups are not existing pharmacy patients. This sets a strong foundation to provide valuable and relevant information as the CDC, state, and local governments release updates.

Leah recognized how important it was to establish this meaningful dialogue with customers well before the vaccine was even ready. And yet, with time of the essence, she was able to pioneer this idea, fit it into the client’s digital ecosystem, and author the high-profile and nuanced customer journey that follows in a just matter of weeks. In doing so, she helped her client be the first retail pharmacy in the market to establish more than a “come-back-and-check-again-later” stance with their customers. Instead, customers could rest easy knowing they would be kept in the loop.


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