In the dynamic realm of life sciences, where clinical innovation is paramount, medical and commercial leaders in pharma and biotech companies are often challenged to effectively blend cutting-edge and traditional methods for insight gathering. Although some late adopters might long for the days of traditional engagements, one thing the last few years have taught us is that leveraging the right technology, at the right time, is transformational in capturing diverse perspectives and integrating competitive and strategic insights across a wide variety of business use cases. In the arena of key opinion leader (KOL) engagement, harmonizing the efficient use of technology with the invaluable human elements of scientific knowledge and high-touch client service to guide business strategy is key to success.
The Indispensable Human Element in KOL Engagement
As stakeholder needs become more complex, so do their communication preferences. This ever-evolving landscape provides a unique opportunity for life science companies to use different forms of technology to support insight gathering as they seek to inform critical strategy. The key to a successful insight-gathering strategy is having the right KOLs for your objectives at the table. Relationships cannot be automated, and machines cannot offer informed and nuanced profiles on your KOLs. However, when you marry state-of-the-art technology, deep-seated scientific expertise, and the art of relationship building, the result is access to opinion leaders and partners with deep knowledge sets that quickly result in actionable recommendations, impacting market outcomes.
Supporting Technology With Scientific Expertise
Pharma and biotech leaders are increasingly recognizing the need for unified KOL engagement technologies—a solution that is not only straightforward and refined, but also rich in scientific expertise and strategic depth. The ideal vendor provides a singular, elegant platform designed by medical and scientific communication professionals, that not only encompasses a suite of innovative tools, but also brings strategic acumen to the design of the program and execution of the agenda. This eliminates the complexity of coordinating with multiple vendors and leads to timelier strategic adjustments. Choosing the right vendor means asking the right questions:
- Is the use of artificial intelligence, KOL identification, and social listening aligned with my strategic goals?
- When new KOLs are identified, can the vendor also provide support in tiering, engaging, and contracting these KOLs, or will I need to have my team, or another vendor do that work?
- Is the vendor’s technology platform flexible? Can I decide which modules best meet my business needs? For example, can I use just the asynchronous platform? Can I use a combination of KOL ID and the asynchronous platform? Will the vendor help my team with the contracting and payment for the KOLs?
- Will my team or another vendor be required to learn new systems and develop the content for the engagement? Does the vendor provide not only technology but also on-staff scientific experts with therapeutic area expertise to help develop questions, create discussion guides, and moderate asynchronous programs, if needed?
- Will the vendor provide an actionable report based on the discussions from the engagement including recommendations for strategic next steps?
- Are the vendor’s technology usage terms flexible?
Blending Digital Innovation With Personalized KOL Engagement Strategies
An agency that can skillfully blend innovative digital tools with scientific and strategic expertise, as well as high-touch interactions for KOL engagement, will stand out as a leader in the field, offering a comprehensive and cohesive approach that delivers both efficiency and personalized experiences. The ideal vendor understands and embraces the traditional value of face-to-face exchanges with advisors and then elevates them with technological integration, presenting clients with an optimal mix of live and digital engagements, as executed by a single, unified agency partner.
ClinicalMind is a rapidly growing, award-winning healthcare communications company known for providing innovative technology solutions, outstanding scientific storytelling, and exceptional client experience. ClinicalMind combines a diverse portfolio of capabilities into a seamlessly integrated set of solutions for pharma and biotech clients. For more information visit http://clinicalmind.com.