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Driving Exceptional Customer Experience and Growth within the Health & Life Sciences Industry

Emily Hoffman

The health & life sciences (HLS) industry is defined by continuous change. New competition– from holistic and homeopathic providers to wellness and healthcare mobile apps–are constantly surfacing, new regulations and policies are emerging, and payment models are always in flux. Marketers across providers, payers, medical devices & diagnostics, and pharmaceutical companies are all striving to keep up with the changing landscape, and keep up with the priorities and behaviors of patients.

The customer journey has become critical to marketing success and this is indisputable within the HLS industry. 51% of HLS marketers view the patient journey as the primary vehicle for improving patient experience and 64% of HLS marketers say they view patient experience as a key competitive differentiator (“State of Marketing Report,” 2019, Salesforce & “Marketing Trends Across Health and Life Sciences,” 2017, Salesforce). Industry innovation and technology, as well as the hyper-personalization patients already experience within retail and service environments, have elevated expectations.They value customer support (77%), follow-ups on progress/outcomes (63%), relevant and specific communications (52%), self-scheduling appointments (47%), and more (“Connected Healthcare Consumer,” 2019, Salesforce). And these patient expectations remain the same across payers, medical devices & diagnostics, and pharmaceutical companies.Consumers Value a Personal Touch from Providers

While the industry overall has been slower to move into a digital world, HLS marketers are working to meet patients across every channel, with 59% saying that their company has increased focus on providing patients with consistent experience across every channel (e.g. in-store, online, email, mobile, social, sales, service) (“Marketing Trends Across Health and Life Sciences,” 2017, Salesforce).

Data Proliferation Creates Challenges 

Among the top challenges that HLS marketers face in creating a seamless customer experience, difficulty leveraging data from different sources and disconnected tools and technology across the business are at the top. HLS marketers use up to 12 data sources to develop personalized relationships with patients–to understand their needs and how to best engage with them. 

The majority of HLS marketers say data unification yields higher ROI. However, less than half of HLS marketers say they’ve accomplished this. Given data proliferation, it’s no surprise that unifying disparate customer data streams is a top priority for 89% of HLS marketers (State of Marketing Report,” 2019, Salesforce). Without a single, connected view of the customer and corresponding marketing activities, , marketers are unable to be efficient and accurate in the way they attract and engage patients.

This is a barrier that marketers must overcome in order to maintain and gain customer loyalty, as 66% of customers say they are likely to switch brands if a company treats them like a number instead of an individual (“State of Connected Customer,” 2018, Salesforce).

Alignment Across Business Units is Lacking

The key to achieving a holistic customer experience and driving business-wide growth lies in connecting and collaborating across business units to ensure that marketing, patient care, support, sales, and all other touchpoints are aligned. Patients ultimately see one organization, not individual departments or services, and HLS marketers are challenged with aligning all departments to achieve a holistic and authentic patient journey. Additionally, as marketers are being tasked with increasing responsibility to connect every marketing activity and investment to ROI, it is more important than ever for them to create solid data foundations and measurement systems that allow for key insights to be shared across stakeholders. However, only 22% of HLS marketers are extremely satisfied with their ability to collaborate with other departments. And a mere 17% say that their current tech stack is extremely effective at driving collaboration across the business (“Marketing Trends Across Health and Life Sciences,” 2017, Salesforce). 

Creating a single source of truth 

Marketing intelligence platforms, like Datorama, allow marketers to connect and unify fragmented data sources, providing a single view of all of their marketing activities – a view that so many marketers lack. Marketers can combine data across traditional channels (print, TV, radio), email, as well as revenue and conversion data which may be captured by medical device sales, appointments attended, treatments, RX fill rates, and more, into one holistic view, to gain real-time insights into trends, campaign, and sales performance. This increases operational efficiency and ensures that teams across the organization are working from the same set of facts, KPIs, and taxonomies – ultimately laddering up to a common set of goals across the business. On top of working from a unified set of data, Datorama adds cross-platform and cross-channel analytics, instant and customized data visualization, and intelligent recommendations to help optimize marketing KPIs. 51% of high-performing HLS marketing teams are utilizing marketing analytics tools/technologies (“Leading the Customer Experience in the Healthcare and Life Sciences Sector,” 2016, Salesforce). 

With the HLS industry adopting more and more digital marketing strategies, HLS marketers can embrace marketing intelligence solutions to keep up with the resulting data and analytics necessary to foster patient-centric customer journeys, drive business growth, reduce churn, and increase sales and conversions. 

For more information about Datorama, schedule a demo at

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