Maintaining and Enhancing Your Customer Presence in Our Current Virtual Environment

Published on March 20, 2020

Having an online presence and providing virtual content is not a new practice, in fact, over the last 20 years, virtual opportunities have expanded and been refined to allow for some amazing experiences.  However, with the need for social isolation there is a sudden stop to social situations, including those on which many companies depend. There is a choice that must be made, to halt activities or find alternative approaches. Due to the uncertainty around timing for restrictions to be lifted, we advocate finding new approaches to continue business.

Office visits are on hold, but that doesn’t mean the relationship has to be.  Be aware of healthcare practitioner demands and priorities, and provide options aligned to their needs.  

As a medical communications agency supporting pharmaceutical, medical device, and biotech companies that rely heavily on face-to-face interactions, we are here to help clients consider opportunities to transform themselves and ensure they maintain their presence in new and relevant ways despite emerging challenges. Some challenges might include information dissemination that is typically done in a live format—whether at a large medical congress or one-on-one between a medical science liaison and a physician or treatment team member.

The great news is that you do not have to start from scratch!   There are various simple things you can do with your current content that can make it virtual friendly. First of all, you can take existing core content and break it into shorter, more focused modules.  Virtual attention spans are shorter than in person, and audiences are more likely to click through multiple shorter modules than a single long one. Additionally, automation of a presentation can make it more interactive and engaging, holding attention further. This can be done with voiceovers to allow a more human touch, inserting animations or videos to further elaborate on key points of the content, or simply adding questions and physical interactivity. Ultimately this can create a more engaging experience in an on-demand, available-anytime format.   For a very targeted experience, consider audience choice online learning modules.  The experience is customized by the decisions each user makes and they can receive real-time feedback during their journey. 

Virtual events can be incredibly engaging, especially if you build them with the participants in mind.  Participant experience is key to engagement and thus ensuring knowledge resonates and leads to proficiency.  A key part of the experience comes from the platform chosen. There are several virtual meeting and event platforms available. Selecting the right platform for your needs is key!  Do you need to transform your product launch, live sales kickoff, advisory board, or speaker training to a virtual experience?  Do you need to split your audience into breakout sessions, host a panel discussion with live Q&A, share documents, or collect real-time feedback?  All of this is possible virtually.

In this new day and age of social isolation, it is critical that we think beyond a moment in time.  Before assuming you need to recreate content, look to what you already have and consider how else it can be used. Precious dedication of resources and limited time with key customers could have broader ROI if created in a way that can easily be updated and syndicated. At the end of the day, providing HCPs with accurate information to make the best decisions for patient care is our most important job and we must find new expeditious ways to fulfill this commitment in the new virtual environment.


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