Professional Audience Targeting
Publicis Health Media
Alison McConnell, Chief Marketing Officer
Targeting HCPs through search has long been a challenge for the pharma marketer. In the past, marketers have relied on two core tactics to distinguish between patient and professional audiences: 1. Selecting and prioritizing keywords which infer the audience’s knowledge level and intent. 2. Customizing ad creative to prequalify the audience prior to their click. But these approaches present some limitations. From the patient perspective, well-informed and/or chronic sufferers of a condition tend to become well educated regarding their condition. And HCPs leverage “natural language” when researching treatments to understand the type of content their patients may be engaging with online.
Enter PHM’s Professional Audience Targeting (PAT), a proprietary solution that enables PHM’s search marketers to definitively target verified HCPs searching on Bing. In collaboration with Bing and third-party data suppliers that PHM typically leverages for display and programmatic buys, the agency created a first-in-pharma approach to building HCP audiences in search. PAT works by matching digital IDs to verified HCPs through use of their National Provider Identifier (NPI) number. This technology provides paid search marketers with access to 36 different segments of physician audiences, which they can overlay alongside keyword targeting within Bing campaigns.
Early performance measurement demonstrates that PAT-informed campaign click-through rates are 28% higher versus non-PAT campaigns. Additionally, cost-per-click is averaging 6% lower versus non-PAT campaigns, and time on site has increased by 13% while bounce rate has decreased by 5% versus non-PAT campaigns.
Beyond the ability to target verified HCPs, PHM can apply learnings from these audiences to non-search tactics across the digital media mix. Specifically, learnings from A/B tests of landing pages, ad copy, devices prioritization, and other aspects of audience-informed search campaigns can be applied to campaigns across channels.