The concept of using ‘data’ in marketing is hardly new, though never has it been more present in our collective consciousness (just ask Zuckerberg). Even after GDPR and industry self-regulation though, the pace of advancement in data-driven marketing doesn’t appear ready to slow in the slightest.

So where do you start?

Use data to optimise creative
Typically, data collection takes place after campaign roll out as a means of evaluating and improving performance. Some of the most effective and inspired campaigns of late, however, have used data up front to inform strategy and creative. Just look at Lynx’s latest iteration of their “Find your Magic” campaign celebrating individual self-expression. Using search data, they found an overwhelming number of queries that spoke to an insecurity about what it meant to be a man. The resulting creative is not only inspired, it effectively tapped into a cultural trend – resulting in millions of views in the first two weeks of launch. You can view the full case study here.

Will this work in pharma?
Of course. Analysing search and social behaviours can give incredible insight into the patient experience, questions facing doctors, trends, share of voice, sentiment, geographic variations, and so much more.

2 things to get started
1. Use social listening to uncover topical trends in forums to inform content in your patient support programme (your agency can undertake this using tools like Netbase to aggregate trends)
2. Use Google Analytics to perform a key word search audit to uncover information gaps that could feed into online search & content strategy

Use data to optimise online experience
You’ve used data to develop your customer personas, found your insight and identified where and when to reach your audiences – job done, right? Sure. Or you could take a note from CheapFlights. Researching their audiences, they discovered that people were willing to travel to experience live events, like music concerts, but struggled to organise their flights. So they created drag-and-drop ads that allowed users to pull content about the concert into a CheapFlights ad, generating a customised travel plan without leaving the page. It’s certainly worth a watch.

Will this work in pharma?
Absolutely. Why not fact check online advice via a banner ad, or connect someone with the nearest GP practice or relevant specialist without interrupting their current online behaviour?

2 things to get started
1. Consider mapping your audiences’ digital engagement journey (HCP or patient) to assess opportunities to add value
2. Make your digital ads work harder – beyond awareness or drivers to a website – by designing them to work within their context

Use data to optimise campaigns after launch
It takes a lot of work to launch a new campaign, so it’s natural to want to move on to the next big challenge after it goes live. However, even with all the planning and testing you may have carried out in advance, consumer behaviours constantly change and content could always work harder. To stay ahead of changes, Hello Fresh adopted an iterative approach when evaluating their online performance. Rather than assessing ad performance based on the final click to website (last click attribution), they used attribution modelling (attributing a percentage of value to each ad the user may have seen or interacted with on their journey) to assess performance. This allowed them to allocate resources more effectively and increase conversions. You can view the full case study here.

Will this work in pharma?
Yes. Yes. Yes. From live dashboards to monitor performance to focused metrics, to planning data capture and learning objectives, there are many, many ways to take the guesswork out of effectiveness.

2 things to get started
1. Begin your campaign by outlining what you want to learn, such as audience insights and behaviours, not just want you want to assess. Build a dashboard to help you assess performance in real time. Try Google Data Studio to get going.

So make this your year of data – learn from it, be creative with it, connect to your audiences through it, improve your ROI from it, and be the star of the next industry case study. It’s already at your fingertips – now is the time to get inspired.

Article written by Kristen Dimmock, Planning Director, VCCP Health