Some DTC marketers believe that they need to have a mobile site in addition to their current websites, but that isn’t really true. The rise of mobile and tablet web usage means that the DTC marketers need to cater to people accessing websites in a variety of different ways—but rather than developing a website for each device DTC marketers can use Responsive Design.
Responsive Design essentially indicates that a website is crafted to use W3C CSS3 (World Wide Web Consortium Cascading Style Sheet version 3—see http://www.w3.org/TR/CSS/) media queries to adapt the layout to the environment in which it is being viewed. In simple terms, one website can work on a variety of devices from laptops and desk computers to tablets and smartphones. It also means that the website will have a similar look and feel, regardless of how consumers access it.
Why is it important for DTC marketers to think about where and how consumers are accessing their websites? Because it could indicate the type of information they are looking for. I am sure, for example, that nobody is going to go to Cymbalta.com on a mobile device to kill some time. In all likelihood they are going there because they are thinking of asking for an Rx or have just received an Rx. If marketers understand how people are accessing their websites, they can better provide content that can provide users with the information they want. If your website is accessed on mobile devices, a great idea would be to provide information on side effects, discounts, and how to take the drug, rather than a lot of information about the disease state.
How do you know how people are accessing your website? The answer should be right there in your website analytic program. If it’s not, you’re doing something wrong. One of the best analytic programs is Google Analytics, and the great news is that it’s free and has many features that can tell you about where consumers are going within your website. Remember, it’s about them, not about you. A good e-marketing person has to be able to bridge the gap between brand objectives and users’ needs.
Most good content management systems have a Responsive Design option, but you need to ask your IT people to ensure it’s enabled. It can save you time, money, and resources while providing greater access to information consumers want and need—and isn’t that what it’s all about?
Richard Meyer has worked in healthcare marketing for more than 12 years and is the author of www.worldofdtcmarketing.com and www.richsblog.com. He currently works in Internet consulting and can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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