Medical Device Marketing: Look beyond the bullet points.
Updated: Feb 1, 2022
Congratulations! You received regulatory approval to launch and commercialize your new device. Now what? Do you fall back on your boilerplate launch plan with the requisite PowerPoint® and/or product datasheet featuring an intricate product illustration and standard bullet point callouts that features and benefits showcasing how your product is better/faster/easier to use than your competition?
Your audience has likely heard it before. Most devices with similar treatment indications communicate virtually the same benefits.
How do you make your product stand out? Does your product have unique features that clearly distinguishes it from your competitors? Trying to over-engineer a product just to add value, may not be enough.
Think about what makes your product, or your product portfolio valuable? Is it how the product is manufactured? How does the product perform? Does it prevent patient harm, and if so, how? Why will your customers value your product's features over another? Is the product's launch success partly based on the company’s reputation itself and sells, services and supports its brands? It is often a combination of all the above.
The days of just publishing a product image, bullet points and a clinical chart or two are not enough.
Marketing a new product launch should be supported, in part, by:
A strong master narrative that combines is a comprehensive content strategy document. The components include: a powerful and true brand position
- 4-5 primary key messaging pillars (or buckets)
- Secondary reasons-to-believe supporting those pillars that will create compelling storytelling.
- Clinical data to support product efficacy
Product features and benefits will always be foundational part of your marketing strategy, but they shouldn’t stand alone. Bolster them with the support of established corporate innovation and a heritage of trust and service. Work with professional copywriters who can help you execute a high-level creative strategy that includes clear messaging that is on-brand and on-message without being overly promotional or salesy, while remaining focused on efficacy. Working with a creative director can help you communicate the emotional impact of this strategy in a way that is visual and memorable.
2. Know your buyer’s persona. A buyer persona is a description of a group of users who have similar characteristics and buying habits. These characteristics include their demographics (age, gender) and psychographics (personality, values, attitudes). Buyer personas help you understand the people you're selling to and allow you to make business decisions by providing insight into potential problems before they arise. To stand out in a crowded space, you must find an emotional place in the buyer's mind that isn't already occupied by one of your competitors. This is why it’s crucial to truly understand your buyer persona before designing your marketing strategy.
3. Be mindful of the customer journey. Map out the complete purchasing cycle of your product from the customer's perspective. Outline each touch point a customer has with your company. Focus on user experience, reliability, and situational requirements during and after the sale. Identify the factors at each touch point in sales and post-sales cycle that may lead to a positive or negative experiences with your product or organization. Every interaction with your customer is a touchpoint including customer service, billing, product training and troubleshooting, opportunities to share successful case studies and continual education support of your products that improve patient care.
A firm understanding of the entire sales and post-sale process helps all corporate departments work together to achieve operational and customer service excellence.
About Brand Device, LLC:
Brand Device merges intelligent, strategic branding solutions with powerful, imaginative and interactive creative driven by a team of leading healthcare marketing veterans with a rich history in promoting medical devices, hospital products, nutrition, health institutions, pharmaceuticals, direct-to-patient and physician practices.
About Lisa Silverman: Silverman is principal of Brand-Device, LLC. As a senior account director, branding and content strategist for over 30 years, Silverman has stewarded regional and global brands with an unparalleled skill set and a proven record of success in team leadership, driving growth strategy, executing marketing communication plans and creating billions of dollars in ROI for healthcare and financial clients.