Establishing an Omnichannel Content Strategy at Bristol Myers Squibb

When it comes to engaging healthcare professionals (HCPs), content matters. When used effectively, content can help improve promotional response, especially when paired with a blend of in-person and video engagement. In fact, according to the latest Veeva Pulse Field Trends Report, the most commercially successful field teams us content up to five times more frequently in meetings.

If content leads to longer and richer engagements with HCPs, how can commercial leaders ensure more impactful, effective assets are baked into their omnichannel strategy? Here’s how we developed our omnichannel content strategy at Bristol Myers Squibb.

Start with a common definition

At most organizations there seems to be some confusion around the definition of omnichannel marketing. Omnichannel, multichannel, and digital marketing all have some overlap but they each mean something different. So, one of my first goals was to demystify the difference between these terms and align around a common definition.

At Bristol Myers Squibb, we define omnichannel marketing as the strategic data-driven orchestration of all brand touchpoints and channels to deliver seamless, personalized, and meaningful customer experiences. Unlike multichannel marketing that places a greater emphasis on the channel, omnichannel puts the customer at the center of the journey. It’s about serving up the right content at the right time in the right place for that customer. And with that as our North Star — or what I affectionally call our “omnichannel ambition” — we then focused on getting leadership and cross-team buy-in.

Build advocacy internally

Defining your vision is the first step, but to then bring that vision to life, you need to gain advocacy and trust from the broader team. Getting everyone on the same page about how to get there and showing them what’s possible will go a long way in building advocacy. I also made sure to set expectations with our C-suite that there will be successes and failures along the way, and we will communicate those and learn from each one.

Successful advocacy requires frequent communication, education, and openness. Having a team of omnichannel evangelists will help you do this and help strengthen the partnership across the organization.

Design a culture of iteration

With content playing such a key role in omnichannel marketing, you want to make sure you’re giving it the level of attention it deserves. To build engaging content that grabs your audience’s attention and stands out in the noise, experimentation is key. Try new things in waves to help foster a culture of creativity and innovation.

Experimentation should not be an occasional one-and-done exercise. Think through how you can build an iterative process where teams can test, try, and fail. That’s part of the secret sauce driving an ambitious vision to fruition. There’s just as much to learn from your failures as your wins.

Having a culture of experimentation and creativity will help you think big, start small, and scale quickly.

Data should be the engine

Omnichannel excellence requires the four Ds: data, decision, design and delivery. At Bristol Myers Squibb, we start by listening — that requires ingesting the right data to make proper decisions. Aggregating first, second, and third-party data can help paint a picture of your audience and their behavior.

From there, you can build a story about your audience that will help ensure you’re creating personalized and customer-centric content — a cornerstone of omnichannel marketing. With the right content, teams can then start thinking about how to deliver it in an automated way, whether that’s by leveraging artificial intelligence or machine learning.

Read the Q&A with Ray Gomez to learn more about accelerating content deliver.

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