What types of sales and marketing software should medical device and equipment manufactures be considering as part of their Go to Market Strategy? This is a question we often get from our clients. The answer is that it is highly dependent on several factors such as the size of your marketing and sales team, the stage of growth your company is currently at, the type of products that you sell, your budget, and a range of other factors that are specific to your market. Building the right marketing technology stack can provide a substantial boost to marketing and sales efforts by providing important lead data and extending reach, as well as automating and streamlining crucial business processes. Here we discuss the essential elements in a successful MedTech marketing stack and evaluate some of the best automation options available for medical device manufacturers to build a tech stack best-suited to your company’s current resources, stage of growth, and the nature of your product and market.
What Is The Best Website Content Management System (CMS) for Healthcare Technology and Medical Device and Equipment Companies?
Choosing the right CMS, or website content management system, is integral to building an effective and scalable tech stack. When building or auditing your tech stack it is important to review which (if any) CMS is currently in use and what features it offers, and to consider how these can help achieve your business objectives. Choosing a CMS that can be easily updated by non-developers on your marketing team helps to ensure long term change management is efficient. In terms of website functionality, businesses may need the ability to create and store client accounts with specialized information, as well as to offer various billing and payment options to clients. There may also be a need to store client invoices and order histories, as well as credit card information.
The most popular CMS in the world is WordPress, which serves as the industry standard CMS for B2B tech websites. One of its chief benefits is ease of use: non-developer in-house resources and agencies can easily upload and manage new content. WordPress also offers a host of SEO functions to aid in optimizing content, and various plugins are available to supplement functionality. Additionally, from a resourcing and change management perspective, new and existing inhouse resources or outsourced agencies are much more likely to know how to use WordPress, which will lead to more efficient delivery of web-based tasks.
The other consideration for medical device and equipment manufacturer websites is deciding whether to enable ecommerce functionality on your website to simply display your products along with prices, or give your online customers the ability to checkout and pay for your products directly on the website. Regardless of whether you’d like to achieve the former or the latter, WooCommerce is the flagship ecommerce system for WordPress – although some of our clients use a combination of WordPress for the content-driven side of their website while bolting on Shopify as their ecommerce platform.
In addition to the functions the CMS provides on-site, it is also important to consider how easily it can be integrated with third-party applications. Tech stacks are commonly formed of a wide range of marketing and sales technologies that serve overlapping business objectives, so choosing a CMS that slots neatly into the stack is desirable. For example, your CMS should integrate seamlessly with your CRM (e.g. HubSpot, Salesforce, Zoho) in order to automatically insert and assign webform leads from ‘Request a Quote’ forms.
It is also beneficial if the CMS can work alongside customer support ticketing software (e.g. ZenDesk, Zoho Desk, Gainsight, etc.), and marketing automation software (e.g. Pardot, Marketo, HubSpot, Zoho Campaigns or Zoho Marketing Automation). While these features can improve the functioning of your tech stack, it is important to remember that they do not take account of the copywriting material present on the site, the quality of the user experience, or best practices for B2B website setup (a separate topic altogether which we will address in another article).
Inbound Marketing Tech Stack
Before You Start: Invest in Conversion Optimization and Display Retargeting
Another pillar of the tech stack is built on inbound marketing software and technologies. This branch of the tech stack deals with applications and processes that generate inbound website traffic and then track engagement to aid in converting web visitors into sales opportunities. However, before investing in the generation of new leads, medical device and equipment companies should make sure to optimize their approach to generating leads from their existing traffic. There are two techniques worth starting with for a company at any growth stage: (1) Website Conversion Optimization; and (2) Display Retargeting Advertisements.
Website Conversion Optimization is the practice of analyzing the quantitative and qualitative data gathered from website visitor user behavior in order to uncover both impediments and opportunities to better conversion rates. For most medical device and equipment companies, a conversion on a website will likely be defined as a web form submission that is related to a demo, a request for quote, or download of a whitepaper or e-book. Your conversion rate will be the percentage of website visitors that fill out a webform during a certain period of time (for example, if 1 in every 100 website visitors fills out a webform, your conversion rate will be 1%). Subsequently, optimizing your conversion rate is the process of re-engineering the user experience on your website to increase your average conversion rate from 1% to 2% or greater.
The second technique to consider before investing a lot of time and effort into generating new inbound traffic is display retargeting advertising. Retargeting campaigns work to leverage traffic that is already finding its way onto your website, showing adverts to users who have previously visited your site.
This helps to keep your business top of mind for users who already have some level of familiarity with your brand or products, helping to maintain contact as they descend the marketing funnel. Display retargeting advertising is a powerful tool for start-ups and growing companies looking to scale. By choosing to focus on visitors that have already entered your website, some level of intent can be ascertained, and it is assumed subsequently that leads visiting your website are warmer than those who have not hit any touchpoints with your business. Retargeting advertising is relatively inexpensive when compared to pay-per-click (PPC) options, where you bid for keywords within user search queries that will produce links to your website on search engine result pages. Furthermore, there is functionality to allow the establishment of a timeframe in which prospects will see your ads. This allows businesses to designate when ads should show, optimizing reach in a cost-effective way and allowing advertising budgets to stretch further. Some channels to consider for retargeting advertising are LinkedIn, AdRoll, and Google Display. Integrating advertising channels into your tech stack helps boost lead generation and enables you to make the most of existing traffic.
Social Network Channels
Another important set of features in your marketing tech stack are your social channels. Growing your company’s social network helps to extend reach and also provides ready-made marketing platforms that are likely frequented by many potential or existing clients. To this end, LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram are all excellent tools for placing your marketing materials in front of target audiences. The first two platforms are particularly effective in growing a network of business contacts, whether your outreach is directed towards acquiring clients or partners. Facebook and Instagram are more useful in showcasing company culture, and providing social proof of your products and services.
In order to efficiently manage posting on multiple social channels, and minimize the time that resources on your team need to spend executing these tasks, you may want to consider social media posting and monitoring software such as HootSuite or Zoho Social.
As well as enabling marketing outreach, social media provides effective lead generation and lead tracking. By embedding UTM tracking parameters into social posts, you are able to track interactions on your website with users that arrive via company social media links. This provides useful metrics on the reach and effectiveness of your social posts, while getting your marketing materials directly in front of target leads.
Prospecting, Lead Management and Sales & Marketing Automation for Medical Device Manufacturers
Prospecting tools, Lead management software, and sales and marketing automation software applications, should also be considered carefully when building a marketing tech stack. There are specific prospective tools available which provide specialist lead data related to the healthcare and wellness industry that are worth considering. Definitive Health and ZoomInfo are tools for prospecting leads, the former specializing in providing data related to hospitals and the healthcare industry. While these two products offer similar services, each has unique benefits which should be evaluated when assembling a lead management stack. If your business transacts primarily with hospitals, Definitive Health may be more beneficial due to its network mapping features which populate data for health networks and the individual hospitals and health centers within the networks. Furthermore, drilling down from health networks to retrieve information on target executives or individual hospital features is quick and simple. The software delivers clear network hierarchies, presenting information concisely on where executives or staff members are based, and simplifying the process of establishing a healthcare client’s potential needs. An area where Definitive Health may lag behind is in the fidelity of contact information provided on its database – something that ZoomInfo has an edge in: if you’re interested in giving it a try, check it out here.
Prospecting tools can also be used in conjunction with lead management software for maximum effectiveness. Tools such as LeadFeeder provide data on visits to your website, including visitor company information, session length, pages visited, contact form submissions, and visitor location. This information pertains to warm leads with demonstrated intent and provides actionable lead data. By providing information on the website visitor’s company, as well as where the user visited from, LeadFeeder enables targeted and precise outreach. One of the principal benefits of LeadFeeder is its usefulness in scaling in-line with the traffic on your website. ZoomInfo WebSights provides similar functionality, but may be best suited to companies with large growth budgets.
CRM & Automation for Medical Device Manufacturers
A CRM, or customer relationship management software, is a crucial component of any tech stack. When choosing a CRM, it is important to consider again the particular needs of your business and what kind of functionality is needed to carry out marketing and sales processes. One automation consideration for medical device and equipment manufacturers is the company’s inventory management needs. Some CRMs are designed to handle complex inventories better than others – for example, do you need to track sub components or only finished products? Is it important for you to track serial numbers within your CRM to allow for precise customer support, repair, and warranty servicing? These are just a few of the initial questions that you may want to ask when weighing CRM options.
Furthermore, the payment structure for your product or service should also factor into deciding which CRM to use. Does your business operate on a recurring billing model, or exchange products on a single purchase basis? Be sure to seek out a CRM that can effectively support whichever payment models your business operates on. Whether you offer ongoing support or field service agreements for your products may also affect which CRM is the best fit. Consider whether your prospective CRM has native system support for managing service agreements, or whether this functionality needs to be outsourced from a third-party application.
The size of your sales team will also help determine which CRM best services your company’s needs. Smaller teams or smaller marketing budgets may be best suited to Zoho CRM or Hubspot, whereas larger departments and businesses may opt for Salesforce which is designed to serve larger organizations. Furthermore, different CRMs provide various marketing automation tools relevant to medical device and equipment manufacturers, and they should be compared to determine which functions are most appropriate for your business. MedTech sales operate along a longer sales cycle, with prospective clients needing to research and plan extensively for acquisitions of new devices, services, or technology. This means that your business is likely to benefit from technologies which can nurture and score the suitability of leads over time. Functionality which can provide alerts for repeat website visits, email replies, or other lead interactions helps streamline and amplify marketing and sales efforts.
A final but important marketing function to consider is email marketing automation. Some CRMs provide marketing automation tools as add-ons to the core CRM package – Zoho and Hubspot, for example. Similarly, Marketo and Pardot serve as best-in-class bolt-ons for Salesforce. As a more budget-friendly alternative for start-ups, Mailchimp is well-known for its accessibility in providing core email automation functionality.
Building Your Sales and Marketing Stack
While there are many automation applications and technologies available for streamlining marketing processes, finding the best fit for medical device manufacturers involves auditing your current tech stack and evaluating how restructuring could better advance your business goals. Here at RFDM, we specialize in providing a white glove service in auditing and setting up tech stacks, and have an extensive background working with firms in the healthcare industry. Get in touch today to find out how changes to your stack could help you get the most out of your marketing efforts.