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Category : Demand Generation

Encouraging Action

Life science marketing often involves an abundance of technical information. This is often for good reason – scientists are inquisitive and want to know what they are potentially buying. What amazes me is how often, in the whirlwind of technical information, lists of benefits, and descriptions of products, life science marketers fail to use effective calls to action. Alarmingly frequently, life science marketing materials contain a complete lack of any call to action whatsoever. There have been brochures, product pages on company websites, and a host of other materials where I get to the end and think “so if I’m a customer, how do I go about buying this or making an inquiry?”.

There is no excuse to not have a strong call to action in your marketing materials, be them print, web, or other. Calls to action to not detract from the content of the message, they don’t have to be distracting, and they are incredibly easy to use. Simply think at what point(s) a potential customer would want to place an inquiry or make a purchase and provide them simple, straightforward directions for doing so. If you want them to call to make an inquiry, tell them to call in order to do so. If you’d like them to fill out an online form, provide a link or put the form in a sidebar, etc. If they can purchase online, put an “add to cart” button on your site or direct them to your e-commerce page.

When you get your marketing message in front of potential customers and you have their attention, you have successfully completed one of the most difficult tasks in life science marketing. Don’t waste that opportunity by failing to lead them to the next step in the sale or inquiry process. Continue the engagement by using calls to action which inform them how to continue to the next step in the purchase process and encourage them to do so.

"Is your marketing not as effective as you would like it to be? Would you like to simply and effectively improve your marketing ROI? If so, talk to BioBM. We can help you develop top-quality materials that are designed specifically to draw customers into the sale or inquiry process."

Be The Expert

Project yourself and your company as life science experts in your field to improve customers perceptions of your brand and company.The life sciences are, almost by definition in being a science, a highly technical field. Most life science products, and certainly life science services, are of a similarly highly technical nature. At the same time, experiments are precious and expensive. In this environment, scientists want to be sure that the products and services they purchase will provide high-quality results, and they are often highly skeptical customers. For many small life science companies which may not have the strong branding or widely adopted products or larger companies, such skepticism can be especially acute. Making customers comfortable enough with your company and products to shake this skepticism can pose a challenge, but there are strategies that small life science companies can leverage to help preempt it. Among the best strategies is to project an image of being an expert in the relevant scientific areas. This requires two things: actually having expert knowledge and understanding, and successfully projecting that knowledge.

Being an expert is often the easier component of the strategy. Chances are if you are creating a product for a particular purpose you already have members on your team who are experts in the the relevant scientific area. There are rare situations where this is not the case, however, and the solution is straightforward – learn. Never will a scientist run from your company faster than if your customer-facing employees don’t know what they’re talking about.

Projecting your expertise is harder. Some customers will contact your company if they have doubts, giving you an opportunity to demonstrate your knowledge and ability to them, however many customers will never contact you in the first place if they question your knowledge and skills in key areas. This requires you to be proactive in projecting your expertise. You need to actively seek out opportunities to show the scientific community that you really are a top-caliber thought leader in your field. How can you do this? There are many ways, and here are a few ideas (this list is nowhere near comprehensive):

  • Discuss new research and ideas in your field on social networks
  • Present at relevant scientific conferences
  • Author or co-author methods papers or other journal articles
  • Make compelling presentations of your technology on your website
  • Draft white papers
  • Maintain a blog where you address current topics in your field
  • Create a website with updated information relevant to your life science field


Scientists want to do business with people and companies that it has faith in, and a large part of that is faith that you have sufficient expertise. By effectively projecting the image of an expert, you will simultaneously improve your brand image earn the trust of scientists, effectively making them more willing to do business with you.

"Does your company want to improve how the scientific community views it? Would you like your company to have a stronger or renewed brand image to encourage more potential customers to choose you? If you want to design and implement successful strategies to improve the way scientists view your company, feel free to contact a BioBM Consultant. We’ll work with you to design custom solutions to assess your needs and solve your company’s problems."

Lowering Barriers

Lower the barriers to purchasing your products and services to increase your life science sales.Life scientists are busy people. Between bench work, meetings, writing, presentations, seminars, and everything else they may have to do in their day, their time is limited. As such, they appreciate (knowingly or not) situations where the purchasing of products that they need is easy, fast, and simple. While the ease of the purchasing process is usually not so important as to change the mind of someone who has decided on purchasing a given piece of lab equipment, antibody, reagent, or other bioscience product, it can easily sway the undecided buyer one way or the other. By identifying and lowering or removing the barriers to purchasing your laboratory products or services, you can sway those undecided minds in your life science company’s favor.

This is a bit of an oversimplification, but for brevity’s sake we can break down the sales process, from the eyes of the customer, into three steps:

  1. Finding your product / service
  2. Obtaining the desired information
  3. Acting on the desire to purchase


The first step is arguably the most important. It should go without saying that unless scientists can find your product, they are not going to buy it. Getting found is a multi-faceted issue that has no single solution, but rather many different potential solutions that can be used in combination based on your company’s situation. Having distributors list your products in catalogs, traditional marketing campaigns via print advertising in scientific journals, banner advertising on relevant websites, e-mail campaigns, search engine marketing, social media marketing, search engine optimization, word of mouth marketing, and utilizing in-house sales teams are all options with different benefits and drawbacks and a unique mix of any of these may be appropriate for your company and product (note that this list is not meant to be exhaustive). Identify how you can maximize your exposure in a cost-effective manner and implement those solutions so your life science products are easily found.

No matter how a customer finds your product or service, you always need to make sure you provide them with the desired information to get them interested in buying. As a general rule, more information is better so long as it is well-organized, relevant, and positive. Use this information to keep them engaged the entire time they browse it. Any time a researcher wants more information about your product but doesn’t find it is an opportunity for them to walk away or look for different products, so even if in formats not well suited to containing large amounts of information, the location of additional information should be given and this information should be as easily accessed as possible. A key component to this, since it will almost inevitably contain the most information about your products or services, is having a website with all the necessary product information laid out in an easily navigable way. (you can learn more about streamlining your website for additional sales here)

Lastly, the ability to act on the desire to purchase should be a fast, simple, and easy process (or at least as much is plausible given the nature of the product or service). For example, if your product does not require a quote-driven sales process, e-commerce allows your customers to order quickly and easily. Online forms for quote requests or demonstration requests are similarly low barriers to action. Where possible, free samples are a great way to get your products in front of the customer. If the customer needs to contact your company, let them do it in the manner that they prefer to, be it e-mail, phone, a simple contact form, etc. to ensure that they are comfortable establishing the necessary communication to further the sales process.

Scientists, lab managers, purchasers, and procurement agents all prefer simple and streamlined sales processes, and reducing the barriers to purchasing your bioscience product can be an easy way to increase your conversion. While the ease of the purchasing process is most often not important enough to the customer to change a purchasing decision altogether, it can easily sway the undecided buyer one way or the other. By streamlining your sales process, you can tilt those undecided buyers in your favor and increase your life science sales.

"Would you like to make it easier for life scientists across pharma, biotech, and academia to buy your products and / or services? Want to use a streamlined sales process to tilt undecided buyers towards purchasing your products? BioBM Consulting’s marketing and internet consultants can help you streamline your marketing and sales process. Talk to us and we’ll help you boost your conversion by identifying and lowering barriers to purchase."

The Power of Remarketing

It’s the season where all retailers start to think about how to spike their sales as much as possible, and while there is a lot of marketing information and tactics which are generally inapplicable to companies selling products to the life science research market, there are certainly some things to be gleaned from the marketing fervor of the holidays as well. One that struck me was highlighted in an article posted today on the website of the E-Commerce Times. Before I say anything else PLEASE remember that this article is written with the target audience of retailers who are marketing to the average consumer making personal purchases – this is not who we are, not who we sell to, and a lot of the advise in there is not good for our purposes. What is good for our purposes, however, is the general idea of remarketing and how it can empower your marketing campaigns.

What is remarketing?

Remarketing is displaying targeted advertising messages to prospective customers who have already shown interest in whatever it is that you’re selling by viewing or responding to initial marketing efforts. For example, if you have a customer on your website who looks at product X, that indicates the customer is interested in X, so sending that particular individual a marketing message focused on product X would have a far higher conversion than either sending an unfocused marketing message to that customer or sending a marketing message to people who have not previously expressed interest in the product. A remarketing effort does not have to center on your website, however, but could be based around an e-mail campaign, online advertising, or even a well thought out print marketing campaign. In other words, remarketing is a fairly flexible tool that provides a far higher return on investment than traditional marketing, although it still requires that some form traditional marketing precede it.

Don’t just take my word for it, though – according to a study from comScore, remarketing yielded over 1046% more online searches for a product and 726% more website visitation within 4 weeks of exposure to remarketing, as compared to not utilizing remarketing. While they didn’t provide data on how the massively increased search and views figures relate to conversion, we can see from these figures that that the customer who has been remarketed to expresses far more interest in the product or brand than the customer which has not been remarketed to, and this increased level of interest is certain to lead to a dramatically improved conversion.

How are you utilizing remarketing? Is remarketing part of your marketing strategy? If not, how will you fit in this highly effective form of advertising?

"Are you unsure how to most effectively utilize or implement remarketing? Are you unsure if remarketing is right for your brand or products and would like to discuss it with a team of professionals? BioBM Consulting can help you design and implement a highly effective remarketing campaign that will increase your marketing ROI. Contact us to talk about how you may be able to take advantage of remarketing to boost your sales."

One last thing while I have your attention – BioBM is offering 10% off all consulting and outsourcing contracts quoted before the end of 2010! Contact us now to take advantage of this one-time offer!

Leveraging a Weak Dollar

Take advantage of a weak dollar to drive international sales.[one_half]Small or start-up businesses are rarely sitting on stockpiles of cash reserves. Quite the opposite, cash is usually a bit tight, so if you are running a small life science company you probably want to take every opportunity you can to improve your cash position. What you may not have thought of is leveraging the weak US dollar to generate short-term revenues and grow your cash-on-hand.

The US Dollar Index, which tracks the dollar’s value against a basket of nine other currencies, is down over 11 points from its 52-week high of 88.71 in June. Put simply, that means that if your goods are priced in US dollars, they will be a lot cheaper to customers and distributors in other countries who use currencies that have comparatively appreciated. For example, the dollar is down about 15% vs. from it’s highs against the euro and the Japanese yen, and is down about 10% from the highs against the Brazilian Real and the British pound. Your dollar-denominated products are now 15% cheaper to customers in the Eurozone than they were just four months ago! That’s a substantial discount, and one that you can flaunt to your customers and distributors in these areas and others whose currencies have similarly appreciated against the dollar.

How do you take advantage of this? Simple! Send marketing messages specifically targeting customers in a particular region and bring up the favorable exchange rate. Call your distributors and encourage them to buy now since restocking on your products is now cheaper. Don’t drag your feet, either, since the dollar may begin to re-appreciate in the near future. If you are in need of short-term revenues or an improved cash position, highlight your newly cheap products to your international customers and distributors now![/one_half]

A strong Euro makes your products cheaper in Europe. Use it to increase sales to Europe. A weak dollar / a strong pound make for good conditions to boost sales to Britain Take advantage of a weak dollar to get a boost of sales to Japan Emerging markets such as Brazil may also provide an opportunity for increased sales due to a weak dollar

"Have any questions on topics of exchange rates and dollar value or how to leverage the value of the dollar? Not sure what markets are most appropriate to target because of a weak dollar? Unsure how to appropriately frame a marketing message for your customers discussing it or talk to your distributors about it? Lacking the international distribution network to properly leverage such an opportunity? These are all things that BioBM’s skilled team of business and marketing experts can help with. Contact us for a consultation on how we can help you drive international sales, and assist in any other aspects of your business as well."