Leveraging a successful email automation campaign to physicians starts with strategy, is told through the vehicle of story, and produces the best results when cycled through a workflow.
True North Custom Chief Marketing Officer Jason Skinner describes the way we help clients reach this elusive and busy audience with email automation campaigns.
“Essentially, the entire email campaign is programmed to react to user response, and the email list stays continually updated,” Skinner says. “When new users are added, they are automatically placed into the beginning of the email sequence, which uses a combination of drip and trigger emails. If users aren’t engaging, we’ll periodically ask them if they are still interested in receiving emails, removing any from the list who opt out. For those who show interest (based on open and click rate) we continue moving them along from awareness to conversion.”
The overall goal of physician nurturing is to engage, educate, and prompt action, but before we set out on a specific campaign, we work with clients to move them through groundwork steps, Skinner says.
Masterminds at Work
Developing a successful physician email automation nurturing strategy starts with a thorough understanding of your goals and metrics for success. First, we meet with you to learn about the target physician audience to ensure the email content aligns with their needs and preferences:
- Identify the audience. This step hones in on the type of physician you’re looking to reach. Say you want to communicate with primary care physicians (PCP) to drive referrals to orthopedists for knee or hip replacement. At this stage, we would identify the unique needs and preferences of that audience in planning content.
- Create a targeted list. We pull PCP emails from your opted-in list based on identified demographics to create a target audience email list.
- Outline the scope of the campaign. Together, we determine the number of drip emails, the cadence for sending them, and when to employ trigger emails.
- Select topics and content variety. You want to marry interesting topics with a variety of content types—long form, short form and infographics—to tell your story in a comprehensive and concise way.
“This is where we create and design custom content based on your individual preferences and campaign scope,” Skinner says. “It’s the life of the entire campaign. Without relevant, dynamic, compelling content, everything plummets.”
- Organize and launch. Since this is about telling a story, we organize the emails into a sequence that is fluid. Then, we input them into an automation sequence.
- Optimize based on A/B testing. The story isn’t over after hitting send. We monitor how emails are performing, and gauge click-through rates and drop-off timing. We also look at which subject headlines are doing best, and adjust accordingly.
“We lean into the data to find out what is working and what needs refinement,” Skinner says. “If there is a 75% drop-off rate after email six, let’s talk about reducing content. Alternatively, we might see engagement spike after email five and see a need for more content. Whatever the case, this is our health check, and we make adjustments based on what we find out.”
A Spike in Referrals
As this process unfolds, the results become clear: Physicians refer patients to your specialists. Reaching these busy professionals can be a challenge, but a targeted and smart email automation campaign can make the difference between engaging with that physician or winding up with a missed opportunity.
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