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Tag : life science marketing

Search Engine Marketing Tips

Life science search engine marketingThere are many reasons why any life science tools company should be using search engine marketing (SEM), yet many do not. Scientists are frequently on search engines to look for publications, protocols, product info, scientific knowledge, and more. In a field so highly dependent on information, and on such a wide variety of information from so many different sources, you can bet that scientists are on search engines a lot. Search engine marketing can not only provide a large audience to market to, but since you select which search terms you want your ads to appear on, it can provide a highly targeted audience as well. Best of all, and my favorite thing about any cost-per-click (CPC) based marketing – you only pay for results.

Please note that the following advice pertains mostly to major search engines (such as Google, Yahoo, and Bing), as they will have the full set of features that these tips assume the search engine to have. There are certainly other search engine tools that have reasonably good features and very competitive cost-per-click rates, but although some of the advice will likely be applicable to smaller and / or more focused platforms as well, we will leave those for a separate discussion.

Understand how SEM works

If you and your life science company are new to search engine marketing, you’ll want to familiarize yourself with the basics. It’s easy to have a poor ROI if you don’t know what you’re doing. Each search engine will likely have a wealth of literature for you to read and watch, likely enough for you to gain quite a good proficiency with each system if you bother to take the time. For example, you could spend weeks reading all the information that the Google AdWords help center provides. Perhaps one of the most important lessons to learn before you initiate an SEM campaign is how the bidding process works and how CPC is determined. Again using Google AdWords as an example, they have a helpful intro video explaining the process (albeit a bit simplified from how it actually works).

Use the tools that each SEM platform provides

Google AdWords, for example, will provide you with all sorts of lovely info. It will give an index of competition for any given keywords, provide estimates on how many searches are performed for any given term, both globally and within a given region, and estimate the cost-per-click that you would need to bid. It will even provide suggestions on additional search terms, and give historical search estimates month-by-month. This information can help you tremendously in determining what search terms are best to target.

Be an opportunist

In part because life science tools companies do so little search engine marketing compared to the breadth of terms used in the field (and perhaps in part due to many life science marketers general inexperience with SEM), there are a lot of opportunities out there that can drive down your cost-per-click, drive up your ROI, and result in more sales. To start doing this, think like a scientist. What could they be searching for that may not be a product, but may be related to your product. For example, if you are selling DNA extraction kits, perhaps you could target not only users who are searching for DNA extraction kits, but DNA extraction protocols, phenol / chloroform extraction, DNA purification, etc. There are many terms that would indicate that someone is performing DNA extraction. Alternative methods, related upstream or downstream procedures, and even names of competitors products are all good search terms to consider. Find those terms with a low CPC and take advantage of them.

Monitor, update, repeat

Major search engines will try to maximize their income by displaying the ads that make them the most money. This, simply stated, is based on cost per click multiplied by the click-through rate (CTR). Click-through-rate is the rate at which your ad is clicked on by searchers for any given term. If your ad gets clicked on a lot, the search engine gets more money, and you get more visitors. Everyone goes home happy. Search engines will reward ads that have a higher CTR with lower CPC, higher ad placement, or both. An eye-tracking study found that the top-placed ad to the right of Google search results is viewed five times as frequently as the ad that is fifth on the list, so ad placement is an important thing that should not be undervalued. By monitoring your results and tweaking our ads as necessary, you can drive up your CTR, lower your CPC, and improve your ad placement.

One last thing deserves mention. We are often asked by life science companies how much is the correct amount for them to dedicate to search engine marketing. This question doesn’t have a numeric answer. The answer is: as much as you can while getting the desired ROI (and without breaking your budget). Note that this will not be an “infinite” amount of money; you will be limited by the number of searchers. However, so long as you are achieving the desired return-on-investment from your SEM campaign, you should continue to reinvest in it to continue to drive sales growth.

Search engine marketing is a valuable, highly scalable, and readily accessible tool that can generate lots of traffic for your site and, more importantly, lots of sales for your company. Properly utilized with a well-designed site including the appropriate landing pages, your life science tools company can realize a high ROI from your SEM investment and grow both your sales and your company.

"Want to create highly effective life science search engine marketing campaigns? Want to ensure that you get a great ROI from your SEM? Well then, you’ve come to the right place. BioBM Consulting’s expertise running SEM campaigns of all sizes is here for you to leverage. By creating great campaigns from scratch or finding and implementing ways to improve existing campaigns, our services pay for themselves by delivering high-ROI campaigns that get results. If you want SEM campaigns that are effective, efficient, and scalable, contact BioBM. Our experts are here to help life science companies just like yours get the most from search engine marketing."

Life Science SMM: LinkedIn

Using LinkedIn for life science social media marketingThis post is the third in a series of primers on various platforms available for life science social media marketing (SMM). The first SMM primer, about the use of Twitter, is available here. The second, on using Facebook for life science SMM, is available here. Check back for more primers on the use of youtube, forums and other means of life science social media marketing.

LinkedIn is somewhat unique among social media platforms. It is a professional social network. That means that unlike Facebook, Twitter, and other “personal” social platforms, on LinkedIn people are looking to interact on a professional level. While 0.2% of all human-experienced time in the world isn’t spent on LinkedIn (only Facebook can make that claim), it still surpassed 100 million members in March and is a ranked the 13th most popular website (according to Alexa at the time of posting. Perhaps most importantly, LinkedIn provides a unique opportunity to interact with individuals who may otherwise be difficult to reach, influence key opinion leaders, and become a thought leader among a crowd of influential experts.

LinkedIn is also interesting because most of the interaction that your company does on LinkedIn has to be personal – there are very limited ways in which the company, detached from the employee that is performing your SMM, can interact with individuals. Most of your interaction must be done as a person. This in turn requires that LinkedIn be a highly personal endeavor and that employees performing SMM on LinkedIn take ownership of the content that they post. This has pros and cons. On the positive side, your customers will be more receptive to the messages that come from people (rather than companies) and will be more likely to engage with them. On the downside, much of the benefit of developing relationships will be lost if the individual managing your LinkedIn SMM effort changes. In most cases, however, the pros far outweigh the cons.

From a strictly corporate standpoint, LinkedIn does allow you to create a page that provides a brief overview of your company as well as provide a description of your products and / or services. While you should complete your company’s description (it looks more professional), your product and service page will likely be so infrequently viewed that it is unlikely to be worth maintaining unless you have a large amount of resources or your product / service offering is only changed very infrequently. You can also provide a feed of your Twitter and blog, and I recommend doing both since it is a good way to direct viewers to that content as well. These tools, however, are the far smaller component of where value can be realized on LinkedIn.

The overwhelming majority of the value that you can realize on LinkedIn is via groups. LinkedIn groups are places where you can connect and interact person-to-person with people who are very likely to be a) highly networked, b) thought leaders, c) highly targeted to your area of interest. In many cases, the demographic that you want to target will already be congregated into a LinkedIn group. Do you sell products or services to proteomics researchers, for example? There are two groups specifically focusing on proteomics with over 1000 members, and many others that are either somewhat more broadly focused or also highly focused but with memberships in the hundreds. Granted, some of those members probably do not receive group updates and visit the group page only infrequently, but a good portion likely check it occasionally, and perhaps 10% of the members of any given page view it regularly and / or receive daily or weekly e-mail updates. For groups with members in the 1000s, that’s a very good audience ripe for quality content marketing. (Think about it – how much would you love to have hundreds of people attend one of your webinars, etc). If a page for your company’s specialization doesn’t exist, and you think that there may be sufficient interest to sustain a group, then make one! You can gain as much if not more benefit from running your own group, and there are even ways to “brand” the group (via the logo, name, etc.).

Don’t forget that posting on LinkedIn groups, like other forms of SMM, should be approached as content marketing. The benefits to doing so on LinkedIn are even greater, as content that creates discussion is rewarded by placement in the highly visible “most popular discussions” section. Also, since LinkedIn groups all have a moderator, frequent promotional posts may result in censorship or removal from the group. To avoid this, be sure to build some goodwill within the group before you make any pitches.

LinkedIn, while not as popular for life science social media marketing, presents unique opportunities which are potentially higher value than those likely to be created via other social networking platforms. In large part due to the focused communities and personal nature of interaction via LinkedIn, high-value relationships can be built and prospective customers can be more effectively engaged by leveraging an effective social media strategy.

"Are you interested in using LinkedIn or other social media platforms for life science marketing? Want to efficiently build lasting relationships with both existing and potential customers but don’t know how to effectively do so? That’s okay. BioBM Consulting is here to help you. With social media marketing solutions designed especially for small life science companies selling research products and services, we have the niche focus and high degree of marketplace understanding to create custom tailored solutions that create breakthrough marketing ROI for your company. Call us today to discuss how we can help meet your marketing needs."

Life Science SMM: Facebook

Facebook for life science social media marketingThis post is the second in a series of primers on various platforms available for life science social media marketing (SMM). The first SMM primer, about the use of Twitter, is available here. Check back for more primers on the use of youtube and other means of life science social media marketing.

Facebook is hands down the largest social media platform in the world, and it wouldn’t be difficult to argue that Facebook is the most pervasive and influential website that has ever existed. According to their own statistics, Facebook has over 750 million active users and each user spends, on average, about 30 minutes per day on Facebook. The rest of the statistics are almost equally staggering. Users install 20 million applications per day. More than 2.5 million websites have integrated with Facebook. According to Alexa, Facebook is the second most popular website in the world (Google is first), reaching an estimated 44.9% of global internet users on any given day. Over 7% of all pageviews occur on facebook.com; this means that, statistically speaking, for every 14 pages that any internet user anywhere views, at least one of those is on facebook.com. This makes facebook the most viewed website in the world and in my opinion is an absolutely staggering statistic. In the US Facebook is even more pervasive, and a comScore study found that 1 in every 8 minutes spent online is spent on Facebook.

Your customers are on Facebook. Probably a lot of them. In fact, it is very likely that you have more customers that are on Facebook than have ever been to your company’s website. According to our internally compiled data on 400 small life science and analytical laboratory products companies, 31.0% of small life science have a presence on Facebook. In most cases, however, a presence is all it is. There is no engagement. Updates are infrequent and not customer-centric. There is no enticement for customers to like the page, to use the page, to visit the page, or even to view the content that gets posted. That is a heck of a shame, especially since Facebook offers the most versatile social platform available for social media marketing. So what can life science companies do to more effectively utilize Facebook for marketing purposes?

Step 1: Build

Build a great and attractive page. Facebook allows you to custom build html-based pages for your Facebook page, and you should leverage those appropriately. There are also great, free tools to feed in content – we recommend checking out Involver for some great free and paid Facebook apps (we are in no way affiliated with Involver; we just like their apps). Always remember that your customers are almost exclusively on facebook to socialize and be entertained and keep that in mind when designing your page and deciding what content to automatically feed into it.

Step 2: Grow

You have a Facebook page – great! Now to get found. Unlike Twitter, which actively promotes users finding other users with similar interests and doesn’t discriminate between personal and corporate accounts, on Facebook your customers mostly have to actively find you in order to connect with you (the exception to this would involve paid advertising on Facebook). This is a hurdle that you need to actively overcome. Some ideas on how to get around this include placing links to your Facebook page on your website and in e-mails, letting your customers know that you’re on Facebook in support and marketing communications, and offering exclusive Facebook-only promotions. If you can create a clear benefit to “like”ing a page, you’ll get a lot more likes.

Step 3: Engage

There’s almost no value to having a huge fan base if you’re not doing anything with it. Provide your fan-customers with information and content that they will be interested in. Facilitate more interaction amongst your fans. Project your expertise on relevant topics. Because of the way that Facebook determines what should appear on a user’s “top news” news feed, which shows users more updates from the pages and people that they engage with most, that a successful engagement strategy will build on its own successes. Always keep in mind that social media marketing is better suited for branding than lead generation, so try to keep branding as the focus and stay away from making too many pitches or overly discussing your products; tactics that could disengage your audience.

Step 4: Maintain

Don’t let your page or your content get stale! If your incentive for getting your customers to like your page gets old and ineffective, replace it. If you aren’t growing the rate at which your customers like, comment on, or share your content, revamp your strategy. As with any branding effort, the payouts are relatively longer term. Giving up before you can reap such benefits is a huge waste. Return-on-investment from SMM efforts can be difficult to measure and because of this managers often are quick to cut SMM if there is any contraction in the marketing budget or if they are evaluating marketing efforts by standard methodologies. If you are in charge of an SMM effort, be prepared to use “soft” measurements, nonstandard metrics and, perhaps, a few reasonable assumptions to make your case for continuation of SMM.

Social media marketing on Facebook is an integral part of any life science social media marketing campaign, and with the right strategy and execution, it can be a highly effective avenue for SMM as well.

"Life science SMM can be complex and difficult to grasp and analyze. Don’t let that stop you from connecting with your customers on a highly personal level and building critical, long-lasting connections. If you’re looking for a high-power SMM campaign that is not only tailored to your currently needs but can readily adapt to your future situation as well, contact us at BioBM Consulting. You can win the hearts and minds of your customers. BioBM will help you do so."

Life Science SMM: Twitter

Twitter is the most popular platform for life science marketing, and can be a powerful tool when used correctly.This post is the first in a series of primers on various platforms available for life science social media marketing (SMM). Check back for primers on the use of facebook, youtube, and other means of life science social media marketing.

Twitter has undeniably become the social platform of choice for life science marketing. Based upon our in-house research performed on 400 small life science companies (in this case “small companies” is defined as those with 200 employees or less), 39.5% of small life science companies have twitter accounts, however only 31.0% have facebook accounts. Of the life science companies that use twitter, however, only a fraction make optimal use of it. Most commit multiple social media marketing faux-pas, and their marketing efforts are, in whole or in part, wasted as a result.

The first thing to remember about any life science social media marketing, and something that I reiterate over and over again, is that you are effectively on your customer’s “turf”, and you need to play by their rules. They are there for a reason, and that reason may be to network, socialize, follow topics of interest, etc., but you can be relatively certain that they are not there to read a stream of advertisements. If your twitter is effectively just a feed of new product announcements, press releases, sales and promotions, don’t waste your time. Either step up your game or shut your twitter account.

Remember that social media marketing, especially SMM on twitter, is far more about branding as opposed to lead generation. If you’re expecting twitter to be something that’s going to provide a short-term ROI, you’re probably barking up the wrong tree. (there are methods to realize a more near-term ROI, but this should be a small piece of your social media strategy). Think long-term. Think of it as an outlet that will project an image or an expertise. It will be one of the “faces” of your business, and its value will be in helping to shape and control your brand image.

When it comes to social media marketing, it is often good not to think of your target audience as current / potential customers but rather as scientists (or whatever subset of scientists you are looking to target). This will help you get out of the more traditional marketing mindset. Now, what would those scientists be interested in? How can you deliver content that is interesting to them as well as relevant to your business? That line that achieves both interest to your audience and relevance to your business is your sweet spot – stick to that as closely as you can. The source of the content can be external or internal, in fact most sustainable social media strategies by necessity rely more heavily on external content as generating the majority of content internally will either be too much of a burden or leave you posting too infrequently.

This is not to say that some more traditional marketing can’t be worked in, it just has to be communicated in terms of how it would be interesting to your audience. New products can be discussed if they are sufficiently interesting and you can add value to a conversation. Promotions can be announced if they are compelling to your audience. Just try your best to avoid making too many pitches, if any.

The next thing to remember is to engage. You need to promote and create bi-directional communication with your audience. Even if your audience is too large to listen and respond to a significant number of them, reach out to some eventually. Share what they have to say, respond to topics of interest, and talk to them. Just like conversations offline, people like it when what they say is acknowledged. Show your audience that there’s a real person (maybe even one that’s not wearing a tie) behind your twitter avatar. Being human is so much better than being corporate, and will help them foment a positive opinion of your brand and create an emotional attachment.

I’ve heard some prominent life science marketers predict the downfall of twitter as a marketing platform (just as, they say, e-mail has fallen out of favor as a marketing platform). I would go so far as to say they are outright incorrect. Unlike e-mail, where you are not always in control of who is sending you messages, twitter users choose who they want to listen to. If they feel they are being marketed to more than they desire, they’ll simply follow fewer corporate accounts. This can, however, be overcome by using marketing methods that don’t “feel” like marketing (such as content marketing), avoiding pitches, creating engagement, and being human.

Most twitter users don’t know most of the people they follow; they follow them because they’re interested in what they have to say. Put extremely simply, for a life science social media campaign on twitter to be successful, all you have to do is be relevant and interesting.

Don’t forget to follow BioBM on twitter! @BioBM

"Don’t let life science SMM intimidate you. If you want to get more out of your SMM, develop a strategy that will help you engage your audience and deliver value to your company, and / or have your social media marketing professionally and personally executed by life science SMM experts, call BioBM Consulting. You can become an authority in your field via social media. BioBM can help you get there."

New Paper from BioBM

BioBM Consulting has released a new white paper entitled: “Life Science Marketing on a Low Budget: How Start-Ups in the Life Science Tools Sector Can Drive Product Awareness, Sales, and Sustainable Growth on a Limited Budget”. This paper addresses ways for small or start-up life science tools manufacturers with a low marketing budget to achieve a high ROI and drive growth by carefully selecting and properly utilizing the best marketing tools and channels.

This new paper is the first paper released by BioBM. To commemorate this milestone, principal consultant Carlton Hoyt gave the following statement:

Statement from Principal Consultant Carlton Hoyt

BioBM’s development and strong growth has both motivated and allowed us to devote more resources into activities that provide value to our current and potential clients, as well as to the industry in general. We hope our continued growth will allow us to more regularly provide such high-value documents to the life science tools community and look forward to creating more papers and reports in the future.


To learn more about the new paper, to preview it, or to request a copy, please visit: http://biobm.com/idea-farm/reports-papers/

MarCom: Leads vs. Branding

In order to achieve the maximum value from your life science marketing communication efforts, be sure to understand the strengths of each medium.Not all forms of life science marketing communications should be presumed to serve the same purpose and looked at in the same manner. Indeed, the audience themselves have a tendency to view various advertising platforms differently, and treat advertising on each platform according to their views of it. There are also technical considerations which make some platforms more suitable for branding and others for lead generation. By understanding the factors which come into play and how each method is likely to be perceived, we can align our life science marketing communications to be in line with our overall marketing strategy.

Generally, there is a large gap between digital and print advertising. Digital advertising is far more capable of easily promoting immediate action by allowing the process from advertisement viewing to lead generation and capture to be wholly smooth and uninterrupted. At no point do prospective customers ever have to get up from their computers. With print, calls to action are effectively asking customers to actively go and do something, be it make a phone call, go to a website, etc, and therefore are less effective for lead generation due to that additional motivational barrier. There are exceptions to this, however, as well as things that can do to augment any particular platform’s effectiveness at each. Print advertising, for example, can be made far more effective at lead generation by offering captivating promotions that provide additional incentive to take up a call to action. Digital advertising can be made more effective for branding through providing higher-value messages, such as in content marketing, and by increasing the quality of the advertisement itself (think along the lines of “production value” for movies). Social media marketing is an example of an exception to the rule. The rules of social media are different from most digital marketing and SMM is far more based around content, engagement, and other activities which are usually not geared towards short-term lead generation. Indeed, life science social media marketing efforts too heavily focused on traditional marketing and / or advertising are doomed to failure.

This understanding of various marketing platforms and their fit for different marketing purposes must then be reflected in the marketing communications across each platform. If we are looking for short-term revenues then we want to target platforms more amenable to lead generation and capture and design our marketing communications appropriately. For example, such marketing communications should have a strong call-to-action and, when possible, be directly actionable themselves (such as by being hyperlinked). If you are looking to improve your branding, then the marketing communication should make a broader, more generally positive sentiment about the company or product line, or provide value to the customer in ways that compliment and highlight a company’s competencies and products / services.

While not a dichotomy, many marketing platforms can be scaled based on their utility for lead generation or branding. By understanding the unique advantages of various marketing platforms, life science companies can better utilize those platforms to achieve their goals.

"Are your life science marketing communications and advertisements not generating the desired results? Are you looking for a partner who understands all aspects of life science advertising and marketing? Poor marketing communications can stunt sales growth, but BioBM Consulting can help your company conceptualize, create, and deploy high-value marketing communications. We can also revitalize your marketing communications strategy to ensure you’re sending the right messages at the right times to the right people. Call us today to start improving your life science MarCom and growing your sales."

Google+ for SMM: too early?

UPDATE (1/24/12): Google has made changes to its search algorithms that have caused us to change our position on Google+. For more recent information, please see our newer post: Google Wants You to Plus.

YES, it is too early to effectively use Google+ for social media marketing. Put very simply, Google+ is too young of a technology and hasn’t developed any tools that would make it genuinely useful for companies. If you want to use it for personal networking purposes or just to get a feel for it, then sure, create a Google+ account but your Google+ account has to reflect YOU (literally – Google doesn’t allow corporate accounts yet). There is also a very high likelihood that you’ll have to attempt to recreate all of your connections if something akin to a facebook “page” is developed for non-personal uses.

When Google+ begins to allow corporate accounts and / or develops other tools that allow companies to leverage it effectively, that’s the time you want to jump in. Until then, it simply won’t provide anywhere near a desirable ROI and there are no benefits to attempting to be an extreme early adopter (or “innovator”, as the technology adoption lifecycle would call them).

"Want to know how your life science company can achieve a high and measurable ROI with social media marketing? Talk to us and we’ll help you build a strategy and solution to do just that."

Scientists: Your Best Marketing

You can proactively use the sentiment of satisfied life science customers to improve marketing and sales.We have previously discussed how word-of-mouth marketing (also known as referrals) is limited in a life science environment because of the segregation of customer populations. That doesn’t mean that the opinions of your customer can not or should not be used in marketing. In fact, scientists can provide you with some of your best marketing ammunition. Since word-of-mouth marketing is not sufficient to rapidly grow sales, it becomes your job to spread the sentiment of your brand and product “evangelists”, and there are plenty of tools to do so.

The easiest and most simple ways of leveraging positive customer sentiment is through testimonials. This is a two-part process that bridges marketing communications and customer relationship management. First, customer sentiment needs to be obtained and recorded. This can be done manually by visiting, calling or e-mailing your customers or automatically by using a CRM system with e-mail capability (which most have). Side bonus: proactive engagement of your scientist-customers by your support team to see how they like your products and if they have any feedback or issues frequently improves their opinion of your customer service and support. Praise can then be used in testimonials – most useful on your website, in e-mail marketing, and in social media marketing, but sometimes usable in more traditional digital and print advertising. While the influence of unknown scientists will be less than that of known colleagues, properly used testimonials can still go a long way in earning the trust of life scientists. Feel free to get creative with testimonials as well. Audio and video testimonials, while far more difficult to convince users to send (there are techniques to overcome this), will provide a more tangible and humanized testimonial and have a greater impact.

Another way you can “stretch” word-of-mouth marketing is by using highly satisfied customers as references. If a sale is becoming difficult, having the prospective customer speak directly to a satisfied current customer can be a highly valuable process. Referrals also tend to be self-replicating, as those customers who have requested or been put in touch with a referring customer prior to purchase will very often agree to be used as referrals themselves (so long as they are satisfied with the product, of course).

There are other ways of leveraging customer sentiments in marketing, and even ways of leveraging the sentiment of scientists who aren’t yet customers in order to generate high-value marketing materials. Such non-customer scientists are often wholly impartial, and techniques that generate marketing materials from their sentiment can be some of the most high-value marketing material for a life science company.

While the structure of the life science research landscape often prevents the fluid and open communication necessary for word-of-mouth marketing or scientist-to-scientist referrals to be effective as a stand-alone marketing tool, there are plenty of things a company can do to use positive customer sentiment and product / brand evangelists. Such means can provide a significant boost to marketing efforts across many channels, and customer sentiment should be obtained and used in order to realize this improved marketing effectiveness.

"Is your life science marketing not as effective as you would like? Would you like help capturing and using customer sentiment to improve your marketing materials, marketing ROI, and sales effectiveness? BioBM can implement simple, cost-effective, and rapidly deployed solutions that will have you fully leveraging customer sentiment (for marketing and other uses) and reaping the benefits. Contact us today and we’ll discuss your situation and how we can help."

Avoid Cheap Catch Phrases

I just was on a life science tools company’s website (not a clients’, and the company will remain anonymous) and this company seemed to describe every one of their products as an “industry standard” in the first sentence. This pains me.

Scientists aren’t stupid. Catch phrases like “industry standard” or “market leader” are readily identifiable and dismissed by a generally intelligent and analytically-minded scientific audience. Such statements also don’t provide any of the information that customers are looking for. If your product really is an industry standard or is a market leader, don’t just state it and expect them to take your word for it. Explain it. Say “more researchers use X than any other product for [purpose]”. It’s a stronger, more definitive statement that at least looks like you’re attempting to provide meaningful information. Just stay away from the cheap catch phrases, especially if you can’t back them up.

Why Are You Marketing?

Make sure you've answered all the right questions before you launch an advertising / marketing campaign.One of the worst things that you can do in life science marketing is not fully understand why you’re marketing. In other words, each time you publish an advertisement, change content on your website, post an article on twitter, or do anything else related to marketing communications, it should have a purpose and you should know what that purpose is ahead of time. Your message and marketing content should then be designed to successfully fulfill that purpose.

The reason I’m bringing this up is because of the disjoint between intention and execution that I so often see in life science marketing. I’m certainly not one to say what other people are thinking, but it seems that a lot of marketers get caught up in trying to be creative and / or make the marketing materials look pretty, or simply don’t ask themselves the right questions when designing their marketing. Some of the disjoint may also be ascribed to a lack of understanding of scientist behavior (or consumer behavior in general). Marketers often simply fail to think about how the audience will think of something rather than how they want them to think or what they want them to do. They ask themselves “does this contain the message we want to convey?” and forget to ask if the message as its presented will actually be effective. Simply adding a call to action to a marketing message, while a good idea in most situations, neither gives it purpose nor ensures effectiveness.

You should be able to answer: why is this marketing going to be effective? If you don’t have a concrete answer for that question, then you either didn’t care enough (surprisingly common) or you didn’t ask yourself the right questions (more common). If that is the case, ask yourself some of the following questions then revisit any marketing communications in question:

  • What is the ultimate goal of this marketing communication? What do we want the customer to do or think?
  • What is the message that we are trying to convey? How do we know that is the right message given our target audience?
  • What will the customer be doing when they our marketing message? How will that affect their behavior and perception of the message? Given those things, are they likely to be receptive to this message?
  • Does this marketing material engage the customer? Will it be compelling to them?


This is a small sampling of potential questions that could be asked to help ensure the execution of your marketing communications are in line with your intentions and will actually be effective. If you find a problem area or have difficulty answering one of these questions, let that lead you deeper to more questions until you have a better understanding of how to match purpose with function and / or have a better understanding of your audience. Retaining the lessons learned from asking these questions will help both current and future marketing campaigns, and the improvement in effectiveness and ROI will be well worth it.

As a general rule we don’t do this, but given the breadth of this topic I wanted you to be able to access me personally with any questions you may have. If you want to ask a question and fill out the contact form below it will go to my inbox and you’ll get an answer straight from me.

"Are you looking for ways to improve your marketing ROI? Would you like to send more powerful, more effective marketing messages? Are you simply looking for better ways of targeting potential customers? Not to worry – BioBM is on your side. Our life science marketing and advertising experts can help you design, target, and execute marketing campaigns that improve your ROI, drive more customers into your sales channels, and help you grow your revenues and your business. For access to a full range of marketing services and expertise, contact BioBM. Our professional consultants will help you understand what needs to be done to improve your marketing and what you need to do to get there."