Dublin, Ireland – In 2014, 76% of patients surveyed stated their interested in pharma companies providing services that complement their products. In 2015, only 19% of patients surveyed stated that they are aware of the services available to them. In 2016, 85% of pharma companies surveyed stated they are increasing their investments in the services they provide to the patients that use their products. However, in Accenture’s most recent 2017 study of over 362 health care providers, the gap still remains – patients are still unaware…but why?

Accenture’s study breaks down three key aspects as to reasons why the services that are built and ready for patients never quite reach the engagement the pharma companies set out to achieve. And while there are more than likely additional reasons, here are the top three:

#1 – Only 40% of HCPs are very aware of the services available to help meet patient needs.

#2 – Only 15% of HCPs always talk about the services available to their patients.

#3 – Only 1/3 of sales reps reported discussing patient services as an integrated solution alongside the company’s products.

And to even further substantiate how impactful patients view and use the services when presented, Accenture did a deep dive into what they call ‘Super Recommenders’.

You can read more about super recommenders and the rest of this study on Accenture’s website here.

Why This Matters –

As marketers, we communicate for a living. Creatively we communicate to bring color to the mundane. Operationally, we communicate to move things, projects and life along the right path. And it is no surprise, that when communications break down, something suffers. 

With the study from Accenture, it is clear there are a couple ‘breaks’ along the way regarding patients understanding what services are available to them. While we’d love to think everyone is digitally savvy and can find these services on his or her own, most of us need a bit of a nudge – especially if we’re dealing with a new treatment for a disease we never thought would land in our laps.

There are several trends we’re following in 2018 (reserve your copy of all the shifts we’re following here!) that can help us as marketers better position the services we’re helping create and implement for patients. Here is a sneak peek at two trend introductions to curtail your curiosity and potentially help fuel your planning sessions with much more to follow in January!

Interfering With Indifference

There are plenty of brands trying to motivate people to change behavior in smart, strategic ways. But a growing number, are just going to get in your way.

We all know how difficult it can be to break through today. To earn quality time and attention and change behavior. The latest way brands are doing that is interrupting people in unexpected ways that instantly focus their attention.

Let’s Be Direct

Brands around the world are asking: why use a middleman when it’s so easy to go direct to the people?

They’re ditching channels, retailers and in-betweens to go direct to consumers with the experience -- and price! -- that people really want. In 2018, new DTC models will continue to blow up business models and challenge old categories to try bold new ways.

About the Author:

As Strategist of Innovation, Drew is charged daily with championing innovative thinking and doing. Drew is part of a global team that leads new innovative ideas that attract different advocates among existing and potential brands that are shared across all agency partners. Drew is backed by over 16 years of brand, sales and marketing experience with Fortune 500 companies such as Progressive and Nationwide Insurance as well as Founder & President of his own healthcare insurance agency for 6 years. Most recently Drew was part of the agency team that launched Briviact for UCB, Foundation Medicine as well as key roles with Eli Lilly Oncology and Johnson & Johnson.