Harnessing intelligent data.
by Ellie Hughes

With more data available than ever before, it’s hard for businesses to identify what they need to know, and how to use it effectively. We know that data is integral to the operations of any business and developments in data are now enabling companies to seek out new sources of competitive advantage and make intelligent decisions.

Data needs to be accurate, up-to-date and relevant – businesses need to extract meaningful insights that support their objectives, in much the same way oil is refined for specific purposes.

Data is growing.

A recent report ‘Data Never Sleeps’ estimates that by 2020, 1.7MB of data for every person on earth will be created every second.† This explosion in data has been driven by the internet, smart phones and social media growth. With so much data out there how do you utilise it in a meaningful way?

Mass-marketing has been overdone.

The practice of sending out communications to as many people as possible has been proven ineffective.

The ease with which email communications can be sent has seen a surge in volume that is rendering them ineffective as a marketing tool as people become overloaded, with even seemingly personal emails actually being a newsletter or sales communication in disguise. Many of the more junior marketers have only ever known email marketing and are often more process driven on getting emails sent than looking at the effectiveness.

Post GDPR and reduced budgets.

With so much data available profiling and targeting the people most likely to be interested in your product or service is not only possible but this can significantly reduce the spend required to reach the people who count.

The introduction of GDPR, has often seen consumer databases within companies reduced, whichever legal option (consent or legitimate interest) underpins the marketing activity. However it is still possible to utilise data to profile and target without using personally identifiable data.

Clever targeting for maximum results.

A survey by software provider Veritas revealed ‘92% of marketers think their organisation will benefit from better data’ and almost half, 45%, expect to reduce costs, increase revenue or market share, with better data management. The upshot being less is more – clever, intelligent use of the data available not sending communications to your entire database but selecting those for whom your communication is more relevant.

Where budgets are tight and with a limited sales team we have found using data intelligently it is possible to carefully target those areas with high indexing for a specific treatment or consumer type. This approach helps achieves a greater ROI.

Case study: A branded vaginal moisturiser.

Vaginal dryness is very common, affecting more than half of women aged between 51 and 60 years, and 1 in 6 women under 50 will suffer from vaginal dryness. Vaginal dryness symptoms include itching, irritation, discomfort and painful sex. The confusion around symptoms can lead to patients’ misdiagnosis and use of the wrong OTC treatment. Only 1 in 4 women will actually seek advice and there is still a huge taboo surrounding the whole subject. Because of this, the manufacturers of a leading vaginal moisturiser planned a National TV advertising campaign to highlight how women who suffer from vaginal dryness can get effective, yet long-lasting relief by using their product.

Alongside the consumer advertising campaign, it was important for the brand to be available in as many Pharmacies as possible to ensure product was available at point of sale to be purchased. With sales force activity focussed on the National Multiple groups and limited field salesforce coverage of the rest of the Pharmacy universe, the brand team were looking for a creative and innovative way to build distribution amongst Independent and Regional Multiple Pharmacies, ahead of the start of the consumer advertising campaign. Also, given budget constraints it was important that any campaign was targeted to areas with the most potential to stock and recommend the Brand.

A Direct Mail campaign was developed to deliver a complimentary pack of the product in a special presentation box to 3,000 target Pharmacies, across the UK. Pharmacies were selected based on high indexing geographic areas for branded prescriptions, cross matched against consumer profile data highlighting households with a higher than average likelihood of using over the counter vaginal moisturisers.

The campaign ran for 4 weeks starting ahead of the consumer advertising and targeted Independent and Regional Pharmacies. The Presentation Boxes containing the brand were mailed to 3,000 Pharmacies – all of whom were new target pharmacies not currently being called on by the field sales force. The campaign delivered 100% of the mailers, as measured by The Royal Mail, with NO returns to Precision Marketing Group, as reflection of the accuracy of the database. Overall, the campaign achieved some sort of action from 5% of the recipients.

Results show that 80% of Pharmacies recalled receiving the activation mailer.

Case study: A natural alternative for hayfever.

As the No1 GP recommended brand in the Nasal Saline category, this brand is especially effective as a natural alternative for hayfever. The brand team identified a strategic objective to leverage this prescription brand heritage into Pharmacy. With limited direct field sales force coverage, the brand needed an innovative campaign to engage with Pharmacy staff.

The model was to send an initial mailer, followed very rapidly with an email follow-up, and then man the phones for the Telemarketing campaign. This multiple touchpoint approach was designed to maximise engagement and response from target Pharmacies. To make sure they have seen the mailer, understood the content and responded to the call-to-action, which in this case was to take advantage of the promotional offer, order POS material, complete some training, and inform staff that there was to be TV support for the brand.

The campaign ran during the hayfever season, targeting 6,000 Independent and Regional Pharmacies, plus consumer profiling which highlighted geographic areas with a high proportion of households who are likely to have hayfever sufferers who may be searching natural alternatives for hayfever treatment treatments.

The team combined pharmacy location data, with data on the high levels of hayfever prescribing, together with consumer households with children under 15, and an interest in natural healthcare. This analysis coupled with a very accurate Pharmacy database allowed a highly targeted and personalised mailing to be sent out to those pharmacies identified as having the most potential.

Overall, the campaign achieved engagement from 8% of the recipients, compared to a Direct Mail industry average of 7%.

Graphic with healthcare icons and doctor holding stethoscope up to them on screen

There may be an avalanche of data available and concerns around GDPR, however with clever application and better data, this can lead to much more effective targeting giving you ‘more for less’, more relevant targets for less marketing spend.

Ellie Hughes
Ellie HughesDirector of Healthcare Client Services
Ellie is a strategic thinker, fantastic communicator, and has an eye for maximising consumer insights. With over 40 years of experience in the OTC healthcare she's a big name in the industry. When Ellie is not tackling your latest strategic challenge you may find her walking her dog, horse-riding or practicing her listening, coordination and team-building skills with her local bell-ringing crew!

Get in touch with Ellie:

Ellie Hughes
Ellie HughesDirector of Healthcare Client Services
Ellie is a strategic thinker, fantastic communicator, and has an eye for maximising consumer insights. With over 40 years of experience in the OTC healthcare she's a big name in the industry. When Ellie is not tackling your latest strategic challenge you may find her walking her dog, horse-riding or practicing her listening, coordination and team-building skills with her local bell-ringing crew!

Get in touch with Ellie:

Our latest insights.

Sign up to our newsletter.

To get our latest insights, essential news and helpful guides straight to your inbox.

Memberships and Accreditations

DMA
PAGB
ISO
ISO 2
The Drum
SMP