New to marketing your business or simply looking for more direction on how to grow an independent pharmacy? We’ve got you covered. We understand at PharmacyLive, knowing the key drivers of a successful marketing strategy for your community pharmacy ultimately can feel like a daunting task. Don’t worry; we’re going to be breaking the process down, giving you a top-level insight into what you should be considering for a successful marketing approach.
What is the Process of Building a Successful Pharmacy Marketing Strategy?
Here’s a step-by-step process you can apply in your business to easily build an effective and successful marketing strategy:
1. Decide Your Marketing Goals For Your Pharmacy
– There are different strategies to grow your pharmacy, which will work for you?
2. Set Your Target Market
– Who is your customer? What are their habits and trends?
3. Build A Strong Brand
– Perform a SWOT (Strength, Weakness, Opportunities, Threats) Analysis for your pharmacy.
4. Keep Your Prices Competitive
– Stay in touch with the competition in your area and online.
5. Create an Online Marketing Strategy
– Take advantage of all things digital to grow your business.
- Decide On Your Marketing Goals
If you’ve got no goals, you’ve got no direction. It’s as simple as that! Some pharmacies look towards management or operational issues; other’s deal with increased brand awareness, developing new services and growing their script count. We will focus on developing the brand and increasing script count through digital marketing efforts. It’s essential to any long-term strategy to outline these goals, considering timelines for these to be actioned and accountant for.
Once clearly considered, it’s time to outline deliverables for this strategy. Basically, how will you achieve these goals in their considered timeline? Break it down. Remember, it’s not a race to the finish line; it’s a crucial step in driving success and growing your business. Having a good pharmacy marketing plan is the first step to succeed!
Although they might not yet be fully lined out, we’d recommend considering any financial aid to back these goals. For example, we recommend our clients to spend $500-1000 per month on marketing efforts. This can include a variety of marketing approaches including:
- Social media marketing and ads
- Dedicating time to meet with prescribers in your area
- Google Ads and Google Business optimization
- In-store and exterior signage
- Updating your hold and greeting music
- Developing brochures and doctor detailing items to leave with doctors
- Set your target market
Something that a lot of business owners forget is that a lot of answers lie in their customers. Who are the regular customers of the store? Is it the clientele you’re looking to attract? Identifying and meeting these customer requirements enables you to build a company tone of voice, generate sales and thrive.
You can gather this research through two ways:
- Traditional Questionnaires – Next time you’re serving your patients, ask them if they could take five minutes to fill in an online questionnaire that can help provide them with a better service. If you don’t think that will do the trick, give them an incentive for their time such as a $5 OTC voucher!
- Generating Profiles Through Platform Insights – Online tools such as Google Analytics and and Facebook Business provide significant breakdowns into your core demographic if you’ve currently got an online presence through a website or social media.
By taking the time to consider your customer, and their needs – driving sales comes as second nature.
- Building A Strong Brand Is Essential
Now we’ve got the ball rolling in your brand direction, why stop? It’s time to differentiate yourself from the rest of the market. Otherwise known as Unique Selling Point, they highlight WHY a patient should be filling their prescriptions at your pharmacy. Customers can get their prescriptions filled at any grocery, large chain pharmacy or even online; by driving a different or enjoyable experience that stands out from the crowd – you’re giving these patients additional reasoning to fill with your brand.
A traditional yet effective method to help you outline this is called a SWOT analyst. When you break down the name, it stands for Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities and Threats. Working through each of these, similar to the goals, highlight four key bullet points minimum for each topic. Guiding you on this, we’ve left a breakdown of what these mean below.
Strengths – What’s built the brand you’ve become today? How will you maintain these wins, and why do your frequent customers love to shop at your location? It’s time to dive into the questions you very well might have already been asking yourself and recognizing everything already achieved.
Weaknesses – Every Pharmacy has them; it’s time to bring this reality to paper! Weaknesses aren’t a sign of weakness; if anything, by highlighting them, you’re showing you’re aware of the issue and driving towards an alternative or an outcome.
An example of a weakness may be a lack of digital brand awareness. Is your website 10 years old or looks cluttered? Does the website make sense and is it easy to read? Does it stand apart from your competition? Check out our modern and SEO optimized websites if your website needs a fresh look.
A professional and updated website builds trust with potential patients and prescribers. Don’t forget about boosting your SEO with a new website.
Opportunities – Slightly going back to those goals, what driving factors will be forcing the company forward? Highlight these opportunities, but don’t forget the small-term wins, example: keeping the pharmacy store open later on a Wednesday as that’s when the pharmacy seems a bit busier near closing time.
Threats – Most people would look at this and assume that logistically the only ‘threat’ could be another pharmacy; we want you to think a lot deeper. Could you potentially have a lack of staff on a weekday, a smaller product offering than other stores? Although not prominent, these can stand as threats in a competitive market.
- Keep Your Pricing Competitive
We understand that generating a competitive price whilst maintaining company targets can come with its stresses. Keeping ahead of the competition, you need to put yourself into the mind of the consumer. As alluring as a product could be if they know that they could get it cheaper elsewhere will most likely have them running to the competition.
Keep in the loop, not only on pricing but understanding what promotional campaigns they’ve got running; who knows, maybe you could give your clients an offer they couldn’t refuse in response? One example would be come up with a $4 generics plan for your patients. However, you will need to make sure you promote this plan and make sure customers know you have a lot cost generics plan.
- Create an Online Marketing Strategy
Hit the ground running with a Pharmacy Marketing Plan that works! At PharmacyLive, we know a thing or two about running a successful marketing strategy; as pharmacy owners ourselves, we understand the importance of having clear online visibility to target your consumers effectively.
It’s our goal to drive your pharmacy in the right direction, from our Google Ads + Social Media Services to our Pharmacy Website Design.
There are no secrets or shortcuts in building a successful marketing strategy. Investment and effort plays a vital role in building your business and if you’re ready to take your business to the next level, you’re in the right place.
We also have something more & very helpful to read for independent pharmacy businesses, kindly click here!
Contact our team today, and find out how we can help your business thrive.