How Visuals Can Help Boost Engagement in Pharma Marketing

21 October 2019
How Visuals Can Help Boost Engagement in Pharma Marketing

They say that a picture paints a thousand words, and this certainly rings true when designing an impactful publication or marketing plan for Pharma.

Gone are the days of traditional publishing where extensive, text-heavy research articles, reports and guides were the only options to disseminating research. It is critical for HCPs to be kept up-to-date with scientific and therapeutic advances in their specialty area and yet we all know that they are increasingly time poor.

While pharma might lag behind other industries when it comes to creative strategies to support publication planning and marketing, change is in the air. Publication planners looking to disseminate scientific and clinical data to HCPs, as well as Marketing Managers looking to offer relevant education around a therapy area, are increasingly considering more interactive formats.

A visual revolution is therefore underway. Short, easily digestible, visual content – including graphics and videos – have become a crucial part of the publisher offering. This must be managed carefully, with the choice of formats and medical writers conscious of target audience preferences. The results, in terms of engagement, speak for themselves.

Our own research into visuals

Here at Wiley, we recently carried out our own analysis to verify the impact that our promotional services have on articles. We examined the Altmetric Attention Score and key usage metrics of articles in Wiley Online Library, our home for all our digital journals (WOL), containing a cover image, video abstract (for the clinically literate) or video byte (for lay audiences), compared against the average metric values of articles that were published in the same issue.

The results were pretty impressive and told an interesting story. Embedding visual content into research articles significantly increased engagement with the articles. All our visual formats had a positive impact on Altmetric Scores and WOL usage. Video bytes rocked the numbers, averaging a 1,150% increase in Altmetric Score, a 76% increase in the article abstract view and a 155% increase in full text total views of the article itself. This was followed by video abstracts, which delivered a 207% increase in Altmetric Score, an 80% increase in the article abstract view and a 155% increase in full text total views of the article.

We can see that creating informative and engaging videos can really help to skyrocket your pharma publication or marketing strategy.

Ultimately, visuals should be thought of as one piece of the communication pie, so to speak. Whether you’re repurposing clinical information or data into a short video, creating an infographic on a piece of research or adding images to support a product release, visual content will help Publication Planning and Marketing teams to effectively engage, inform and educate your audience.

Why visual content works to drive HCP engagement

IA recent MediaPost article confirmed some of the benefits of incorporating visuals into your pharma marketing strategy.

It makes clinical text easier to digest.

Embracing visual content into your Pharma publication or marketing plan is complementary to traditional research articles, rather than a substitute. Our research mentioned above shows that graphics can enhance and support the content of clinical articles, making them more engaging. This ties in with research carried out by the University of Minnesota, which found that images are processed 60,000 times faster than text by the brain. By including great visuals within your clinical articles, you’re not dumbing it down; you’re helping to get your message across to HCPs (and therefore ultimately patients) more efficiently.

It drives impressions.

A study from PR Newswire found that articles containing images get 94% more views than ones without, while 91% of respondents to a DemandGen report admitted that they now prefer visual content over written content. More clicks on your content means more HCPs finding out about your research or related educational content, driving impressions and engagement as a result.

It makes consumption a more natural process.

Visuals are a way of actually showing HCPs how your information such as research findings or data actually relate to their clinical practice. It’s also an opportunity to create compelling content that’s more in line with how today’s professionals are consuming content naturally in their lives outside the workplace.

Credible, quality content is what Wiley is known for – that’s why we have 54 million unique visitors accessing our health titles on the Wiley Online Library and 108 million downloads a year – and now we can help you design for the digital age. Get in touch today to find out how our publishing expertise and local knowledge can help you drive engagement for your brand.