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B2B Healthcare Marketing for 2020 [Top 3 Areas of Spend]

By: Andrea Panno

Policy and payment changes are two trends predicted to shape the healthcare industry in 2020—but what will be different about how B2B healthcare companies reach their buyers and stakeholders? Two words: digital transformation.

Website development, digital marketing, and tradeshows (which now feature major digital marketing components) topped the charts of the 2020 B2B Marketing Mix Report, which surveyed B2B healthcare marketers, among others, to understand their top areas of marketing spend for 2020—and the results were digital.

Has your healthcare company incorporated these strategies into its 2020 marketing plan?

1. Website Development for Healthcare Companies

An impressive web presence is critical for healthcare companies competing in a saturated landscape. Whether for life science organizations, software companies, or clinical research firms, a healthcare website must reflect your company’s advanced capabilities through design and development. As you build your new website in 2020, be sure to think carefully about how you include these must-haves1:

  • Minimalistic design that drives higher engagement and faster load times
  • Personalized UX that uses intuitive navigation strategies
  • Chatbot usage from applications like Drift that improve engagement
  • SEO driven content that keeps you competitive on the search engine results page (SERP)
  • Mobile-first development practices for the increasing amount of on-the-go users
  • GDPR compliance that demonstrates your website meets current best practices and regulations

Investing in a new website also requires conversation about which content management system (CMS) is right for your company; often it’s a toss-up between WordPress or HubSpot. Read this blog to weigh the pros and cons and determine which CMS is best for your company’s marketing needs.

2. Digital Marketing for Healthcare Companies

Search engine optimization (SEO) and search engine marketing (SEM) comprise the second area of marketing spend for healthcare professionals in 2020. SEO, which is the process of increasing your website’s visibility and subsequent visitors, is a necessary tactic that will support your website investment. Keep in mind that SEO is a long-term strategy: it’s a slow and steady build of consistent, high-quality website content and backlinks to your website—things that can’t happen overnight.

SEM, however, is the real investment since it’s primarily executed through paid advertising. Healthcare marketers and advertisers, however, run into the challenge of highly competitive and expensive keywords as one in 20 searches on Google are health-related, according to a Google study. So, it becomes a matter of getting creative with your healthcare campaigns and tactics.

LinkedIn InMail and Programmatic Advertising, for example, are highly targeted. LinkedIn InMail lets you send personalized messages to LinkedIn members based on demographic criteria, while Programmatic Advertising uses automated processes to show your ad at the optimal time and place to an audience you create.

Tradeshows, which are the third area of marketing spend for healthcare companies in 2020 (and our next topic), also provide creative opportunities for SEM. Geofencing and geotargeting let you select a specific area, such as a conference center and its surrounding areas, to send your online ads.

3. Tradeshows & Events for Healthcare Companies

Not surprisingly, tradeshow and events are the third area of marketing spend for healthcare companies in 2020, and for good reason. Event marketing is the second-highest source of leads for healthcare marketers, right after referrals. And it makes sense because events and referrals both indicate a personal connection. For B2B healthcare purchases, which are often major investments, having a personal connection can be necessary to getting the conversation started at all.

So while tradeshows and events do require a large investment—from the tickets, exhibit space, sponsorship opportunities, and travel to the marketing collateral, booth, and pre-show, in-show, and post-show marketing—B2B marketers know the effort is worth it because the ROI is proven.

Are You Budgeting for These Strategies in 2020?

B2B companies that successfully master digital transformation have 8% more shareholder returns and five times more revenue growth than their peers.2 So, as we look at the top three areas of marketing spend for healthcare companies in 2020, we’re not surprised that digital strategies topped the charts.

Make sure your 2020 marketing program is on par with the healthcare-industry standard. Get your copy of the 2020 B2B Marketing Mix Report now. If you’re not sure how to execute on a certain trend or need help tailoring tactics to your audience, contact Sagefrog, a B2B marketing agency dedicated to accelerating your success. We love learning about new companies and brainstorming the best ways to reach an audience.

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  1. 10 Web Development Trend Predictions for 2020, Running SEO
  2. How B2B digital leaders drive five times more revenue growth than their peers, McKinsey & Company